Politicians pandering to American paranoia
 

Politicians pandering to American paranoia

By Martin Dyckman • Guest Columnist | Two heart-rending articles occupied the front page of the Florida newspaper that I…
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Vaccine mandates a good bellwether
 

Vaccine mandates a good bellwether

To the Editor: Cops threatening to quit over vaccine mandates is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to reform police departments. Let them…
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Climate columnist cherry picked facts
 

Climate columnist cherry picked facts

To the Editor: After reading guest columnist Patrick Gleason’s column in the September 7 issue of The Smoky Mountain News,…
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Does Gleason think the earth is flat?
 

Does Gleason think the earth is flat?

To the Editor: The SMN does not have any comics, but some of the letters to the editor are a…
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Democrats try to destroy America
 

Democrats try to destroy America

To the Editor: Our forefathers proclaimed in the Declaration of Independence that we have certain inalienable rights, those being the…
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Gleason’s reality is a fantasy
 

Gleason’s reality is a fantasy

To the Editor: In his editorial, Patrick Gleason claimed that Dr. Curry’s editorial on climate change was not based on…
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Is this really our democracy?
 

Is this really our democracy?

To the Editor: “Dissent is the highest form of patriotism” was a popular statement in George Bush’s presidency during protests…
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Local officials including (left to right) Sheriff Greg Christopher, Commissioner Brandon Rogers, Sen. Kevin Corbin and Rep. Mark Pless talk to residents of Laurel Bank Campground on Sept. 2. Cory Vaillancourt photo
 

The weight of the wait: Local governments look forward to FEMA reimbursements

The aftermath of deadly flooding that killed six people in the Cruso community of Haywood County on Aug. 16 saw…
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Homes throughout the Cruso area were left destroyed after the floodwaters receded. Scott McLeod photo
 

‘And then it was too late’: Flood warning timeline reveals challenges of mountain forecasting

On the afternoon of Tuesday, Aug. 17, Rob Young was watching the rain fall. He watched it first through the…
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The AstroTurf was damaged at Pisgah Memorial Stadium following Tropical Storm Fred. Greg Boothroyd photo
 

Haywood County Schools has $10.5 million in flood damage

Beginning Sept. 20, students at Central Haywood High School will return to part-time in-person learning. These students have been learning…
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Resignations plague Downtown Waynesville Association board
 

Resignations plague Downtown Waynesville Association board

Updated at 10 a.m. Sept. 15: The Waynesville Board of Alderman voted unanimously at Tuesday night's meeting for the town…
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Elected officials, employees to see raises in new Cherokee budget
 

Elected officials, employees to see raises in new Cherokee budget

The $633 million budget Tribal Council approved Sept. 7 represents a return to growth, after a cautious 2020-2021  budget relied…
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How to apply for FEMA assistance
 

How to apply for FEMA assistance

Residents of Buncombe, Haywood, and Transylvania counties who were affected by the remnants of Tropical Storm Fred from Aug. 16…
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Permits required for bridge rebuilding
 

Permits required for bridge rebuilding

Many smaller, private bridges were damaged in Tropical Storm Fred, and homeowners are understandably anxious to get them replaced. 
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Swain man found guilty of murder
 

Swain man found guilty of murder

A federal jury in Asheville convicted Shane McKinley Swimmer, 21, of Cherokee, of second degree murder last week, announced William…
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Franklin’s new town manager no stranger to WNC
 

Franklin’s new town manager no stranger to WNC

A little over a year after she left for a town manager job in Altavista, Virginia, former Waynesville Assistant Town…
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The Twin Towers.
 

This must be the place: ‘Tall building shake, voices escape singing sad, sad songs’

Sitting in a camping chair next to the small fire, I sipped a nightcap and reached for my phone to…
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Tamara Thompson addresses Tribal Council on Sept. 9.
 

Cherokee upholds same-sex marriage ban

After nearly two hours of discussion, debate and even tears during its Thursday, Sept. 9 meeting , the Cherokee Tribal…
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Enrollment dips at WCU
 

Enrollment dips at WCU

For the first time since 2015, Western Carolina University has posted a fall enrollment figure lower than that of the…
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Biden declares major disaster in Haywood County
 

Biden declares major disaster in Haywood County

More than three weeks after deadly flash flooding along the East Fork of the Pigeon River killed six and displaced…
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River’s Edge Park in Clyde — designed to survive frequent flooding — was coated with several inches of mud the morning after the flood. Cory Vaillancourt photo
 

Below the waterline: Fred’s impact on aquatic life remains to be seen

Eric Romaniszyn had been Haywood Waterways Association’s project manager for less than six months when the legendary floods  of September…
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Good folks and a wicked man
 

Good folks and a wicked man

Years ago, a friend and I were watching some news show like 60 Minutes about juvenile murderers. The point of…
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Reflections of a 9/11 mental health volunteer
 

Reflections of a 9/11 mental health volunteer

By Scott Hinkle • Guest Columnist | Twenty years ago on September 14, I was one of only two passengers…
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Finding an antidote in baseball
 

Finding an antidote in baseball

Aside from the global darkness of a pandemic, political strife, natural disasters and the impending anniversary of 9/11, there is…
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The time to act on climate change is now
 

The time to act on climate change is now

By Steve Wall • Guest Columnist | The place — Canton; the time — 7 a.m.; the date — September…
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WCU students Kinley Cook, Laila Figaroa and Megan Gorman stand in front of Sylva’s new mural by Worth LaRose. Hannah McLeod photo
 

What’s new in downtown Sylva?

Like the rest of the world, Sylva has had to grapple with the ongoing Coronavirus Pandemic and the ensuing economic…
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Bernadette Peters started her new job as the Main Street Sylva Association’s executive director on July 1. Donated photo
 

Labor shortage will be focus for Sylva’s new downtown director

Bernadette Peters arrived in Western North Carolina in 2011 as a novice in the world of food service and an…
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Hook, Line & Drinker Festival at Bridge Park in Sylva.
 

Sylva wraps up summer festival season

Planning events during the COVID-19 Pandemic has been no picnic. Just as businesses and agencies make plans for their next…
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Pride Parade participants march down Main Street in Downtown Sylva. Hannah McLeod photo
 

Sylva shows community ‘Pride’

Under bright blue skies filled with hot sun, Sylva hosted its inaugural Sylva Pride celebration this past Saturday. Over 500…
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WCU waives application fees for 2022
 

WCU waives application fees for 2022

Western Carolina University officials are waiving admission application fees for both undergraduate and graduate programs for students wanting to enter…
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Fleeing man pleads guilty in Macon
 

Fleeing man pleads guilty in Macon

A man who sped in a stolen vehicle through Franklin last year in a botched attempt to evade law enforcement…
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A rooftop terrace offers sweeping views of campus, native plant gardens and a convenient spot for astronomy observations. Holly Kays photos
 

Training tomorrow’s scientists: WCU opens $110.5 million science building

Until 2016, then-Chancellor David O. Belcher spent much of his time and energy as leader of Western Carolina University in…
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Waynesville’s Board of Aldermen considers the formation of the homeless task force in December, 2019. Cory Vaillancourt photo
 

Waynesville homeless task force foundering

Waynesville’s homeless task force, now rocked by resignations and dissention, failed to meet a deadline to present recommendations to the…
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Katie Dean promises ‘blue collar’ campaign in NC11
 

Katie Dean promises ‘blue collar’ campaign in NC11

Born and raised in North Georgia, Katie Dean has taken a different path to the NC11 Democratic primary than most. 
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New EBCI budget includes salary increases for employees, elected officials
 

New EBCI budget includes salary increases for employees, elected officials

Tribal Council passed a 2021-2022 budget today that incorporates recommended salary increases for employees, board members and elected officials following…
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The Infamous Stringdusters.
 

Travelin’ this lonesome road: Jeremy Garrett of The Infamous Stringdusters

With its latest album release, “A Tribute to Bill Monroe,” The Infamous Stringdusters pay homage to the long gone, yet…
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Matthew Shepard. (photo: Gina van Hoof)
 

This must be the place: Ode to Sylva Pride, ode to all the colors of the rainbow

Kudos to the town of Sylva for hosting its inaugural Pride celebration this past Saturday in downtown. A day filled…
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Two incumbents defeated in Council elections
 

Two incumbents defeated in Council elections

Three current Tribal Council members will not return in October following the Sept. 2 General Election, but the 2021-23 government…
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Alcohol referenda pass in Cherokee
 

Alcohol referenda pass in Cherokee

In a historic vote, Cherokee voters said yes to expanded alcohol sales on the Qualla boundary following a Sept. 2…
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Madison Cawthorn speaks in Sylva during the 2020 caqmpaign.
 

EXCLUSIVE: Conservative firebrand Cawthorn responds to furor over insurrection comments

Western North Carolina Congressman Madison Cawthorn is known for making controversial statements, but video footage from a recent Macon County…
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Franklin man pleads guilty to robbery with AR-15
 

Franklin man pleads guilty to robbery with AR-15

A Franklin man will spend at least 118 months and up to 128 months in prison after admitting in court…
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319 new COVID cases in Haywood, 3 more deaths
 

319 new COVID cases in Haywood, 3 more deaths

In the week since the last press release, Haywood County Public Health has received notice of 319 new cases of COVID-19.  As…
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WCU waives admission application fees for 2022
 

WCU waives admission application fees for 2022

Western Carolina University officials are waiving admission application fees for both undergraduate and graduate programs for students wanting to enter the…
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Log jams like this one on the upper Davidson River in the Pisgah National Forest could burst at any time, creating danger downstream. USFS photo
 

Lasting damage: Recreation impacts from Fred could linger for years

A week before Tropical Storm Fred unleashed historically high floodwaters on Western North Carolina, Greg Philipp was in Washington fighting…
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Abrams Falls. NPS  photo
 

Smokies sees two fatal accidents in one weekend

Two men died while visiting the Great Smoky Mountains National Park last weekend, one due to drowning and another resulting…
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Current and former Haywood Community College students Alec Parsons (from left), Ben Knicely and Darby Hand recently competed at the STIHL Timbersports US Championships in Little Rock, Arkansas. Donated photo
 

HCC student wins national timbersports title

A Haywood Community College student earned the 2021 U.S. Rookie Champion title at the recent STIHL Timbersports U.S. Championships in…
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Dispose of chemicals safely
 

Dispose of chemicals safely

As floodwaters recede and cleanup continues, the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services urges farmers and homeowners to evaluate…
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A quiet place: the book nook
 

A quiet place: the book nook

Readers generally look for a special place to sink into their books, to escape the noise and hubbub of the…
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Oliver Wood. (photo: Joshua Black Wilkins)
 

Kindness is my religion: A conversation with Oliver Wood

When the entire music industry shutdown for the foreseeable future in March 2020, many artists and bands didn’t know what…
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Charlie Watts.
 

This must be the place: ‘And the drummer, he’s so shattered, trying to keep on time’

Oh, Charlie, Charlie, Charlie.  Charlie Watts. Drummer of The Rolling Stones. The backbone of rock-n-roll. Gone last Tuesday at age…
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