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Is it 2022, or 2020 part 2?

Is it 2022, or 2020 part 2?

Looking back to early 2021, we all thought this was going to be our year. I mean, how could it be any crazier than 2020?

Well, can you say increasingly-crazy politics, a seemingly never-ending pandemic, a disastrous flood and yet visitors and newcomers alike still streaming to these wonderful mountains in search, perhaps, of some healing salve. All kinds of news, some that warms the heart and some that drags down the soul.

But before we move on, The Smoky Mountain News once again takes a look back to reflect on the last year of news. Some of the headlines that have graced our pages could pass for a satire headline from The Onion, but sadly, they’re all too real. However devastating and infuriating the news has been this year, it’s still important to find a little bit of humor in the absurd.

Our annual Spoof Awards and Fake News Freakout pay tribute to the people, places and events that have made 2021. Congratulations and condolences to those who have earned an award this year. We appreciate the laughs among the tears and hope you can find the courage to laugh at yourselves as well. If you didn’t make the cut this year, there’s still plenty of time in 2022 to leave your mark.

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