Waynesville Inn sold, will see extensive rehab

An iconic Waynesville landmark sold for nearly $9 million last week, but the new owner’s plans to renovate the 165-acre property, the 111-room hotel and the 27-hole golf course will also become one of the area’s most significant economic development investments — more than $25 million — once it’s completed.

Smoothing the way to LeConte: Smokies completes $1.3 million trail project

The few remaining leaves hanging in the trees shine like stained glass as the morning sun rises high enough to outrun the slopes above Trillium Gap Trailhead in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The abnormally warm November day is perfect for hiking, the play of sunlight on autumn leaves and the sweeping views glimpsed through mostly bare branches commanding complete attention. It’s easy to forget the ground beneath your boots, feet moving forward automatically as eyes focus up and around, only occasionally flickering downward. 

Hope for Scotts Creek: Report yields optimism for creek’s restoration

Sylva got some good news about the creek that runs straight through its heart at a Nov. 8 town meeting. 

Scotts Creek has been on the state’s list of impaired waterways since 2008, continually testing above acceptable levels for fecal coliform bacteria, a group that includes dangerous pathogens like E. coli. Aside from implications for the health of the aquatic ecosystem, high concentrations of such bacteria can make streams unsafe to boat, wade or otherwise recreate in. 

Jail program offers wake up call for women

At 27 years old, Samantha Ledford found herself addicted to prescription pills and heroin. Her daily life had become consumed with finding her next high and there didn’t seem to be a way out. 

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