May the North Shore Road rest in peace

Swain County native Heath Shuler is doing his home county a favor by putting together a powerful congressional coalition to support a cash settlement in lieu of building the controversial North Shore Road. Truthfully, there’s little chance that this road was ever going to get built, so taking a $52 million payout seems a much smarter option than holding out hope that a decades-old promise would ever be kept.

Cousin Eugene fights the train

By Carl Iobst

Ed Stephens of Dillsboro recently had a problem with the Great Smoky Mountain Railroad. According to the Sylva Herald, Stephens said the railroad is abandoning old train cars on his property. Stephens “called them and asked them to remove the cars.”

There’s no acceptable reason not to recycle glass

He’s on record, and we for one will hold him to it: Haywood County’s new solid waste director says anything that “can be recycled should be.”

Meal deal shines light on Swain’s dirty politics

It’s not clear what Swain County commissioners are hoping to accomplish by turning over to the District Attorney’s office the investigation into the way the sheriff’s office handled excess meal money, but there’s evidence that a long list of people could be implicated if this probe is taken seriously.

Be a sport, get involved in Senior Games

By Dick and Sandy Michener

Are you a serious competitor or a weekend athlete? Are you an accomplished artist or a hobbyist? Regardless of your abilities and goals, you have a place in the 2007 Haywood County Senior Games (and the Senior Games in all the counties in Western North Carolina for that matter).

In truth, boating won’t harm the Chattooga

By Bruce Hare • Guest Columnist

I would like to respond to Mr. James Costa’s letter (March 14, The Smoky Mountain News) expressing his concern about kayaking and canoeing on the headwaters of the Wild and Scenic Chattooga River.

Initiative puts a new face on an important issue

Being environmentally conscious has become mainstream, but we still have a long way to go before mankind figures out how to live and prosper without negatively impacting the very earth that sustains us. A relatively new front raising awareness in this arena is coming from organized Christian religions, and an upcoming conference at Lake Junaluska is a great example of a progressive movement whose time has come.

Giving up too much for fear

There’s been a lot of discussion about the attack on the student in the cafeteria of Tuscola High School a few weeks ago where one student beat up another and inflicted some relatively serious injuries. Apparently it wasn’t the guilty party’s first incident. I never have understood those for whom fighting is just something that happens on a semi-regular basis, but then again, there are a lot of personality traits I see in others that I can’t comprehend.

A mother’s remedy for shark attacks

By Stephanie Wampler

It was one of those days .... One of those days when an unnecessarily shrill alarm clock tears you from deep slumber, when you swing out of bed and land your foot on a particularly sharp Lego, and while you are hopping and cursing, you crash into the corner of the door.

Contacting my hirsute love

Back in the early 1950s when Western Carolina University was still Western Carolina Teachers College, I got a crush on a feisty little co-ed named Hedy West during my sophomore year. Hedy played a banjo and sang exhilarating songs about dying miners and terrible injustices visited on people who worked in cotton mills.

Smokey Mountain News Logo
Go to top
Payment Information


At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.