Iconoclast hiker conquers Mountains to Sea Trail
 

Iconoclast hiker conquers Mountains to Sea Trail

Scot Ward isn’t a missionary, but he does have a burning message. An experienced thru-hiker who carries a copy of…
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Maggie may get on board with county erosion control
 

Maggie may get on board with county erosion control

The Town of Maggie Valley recently transferred the responsibility for building inspections to Haywood County. Now, Maggie is considering handing…
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From searing to sautéing, the competition is hot at Mélange of the Mountains
 

From searing to sautéing, the competition is hot at Mélange of the Mountains

Foodies can have it all at the sixth annual Mélange of the Mountains culinary gala in Haywood County. Many of…
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Swain passes moratorium on utility projects
 

Swain passes moratorium on utility projects

The setting may have been humble –– a nondescript meeting room in a county administration building –– but the Swain…
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Recurring money problems pit HCC, county against each other
 

Recurring money problems pit HCC, county against each other

Haywood Community College leaders are at odds with county commissioners over funding for the college. The county slashed capital contributions…
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Smoky Mountain Center to offload psychiatric services
 

Smoky Mountain Center to offload psychiatric services

Smoky Mountain Center has begun the process of transferring its mental health services to private companies in a move that…
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Restaurant ‘ghost’ plays tricks on owners
 

Restaurant ‘ghost’ plays tricks on owners

Cindy Robertson never for a minute believed in ghosts — that is, until she moved into her new restaurant outside…
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The ‘loser’ case may not be all that it appears
 

The ‘loser’ case may not be all that it appears

By Chris Cox I did not expect to, but I feel sorry for Enka Middle School teacher Rex Roland, who…
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Franklin becomes an Appalachian Trail Community
 

Franklin becomes an Appalachian Trail Community

The town of Franklin has been officially designated an Appalachian Trail Community. A new program of the Appalachian Trail Conservancy…
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The Naturalist's Corner
 

The Naturalist's Corner

Invited for tea I opened the door around 7 a.m. last Saturday and spring hit me square in the face.…
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Maggie eases proposed design standards
 

Maggie eases proposed design standards

The Maggie Valley Planning Board has eased requirements on a proposed set of design standards that would shape the town’s…
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Learning to treat injuries in the wild
 

Learning to treat injuries in the wild

What can you do with a foam pad, rain pants, sleeping bag and an old T-shirt? A whole lot apparently,…
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SBA spreads the wealth wide and far in I-40 rockslide loans
 

SBA spreads the wealth wide and far in I-40 rockslide loans

The U.S. Small Business Administration plans to hand over more than $1.4 million in disaster relief loans to a host…
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Dixie dog transport saves lives
 

Dixie dog transport saves lives

With the euthanasia rate at area shelters fluctuating between 50 and 70 percent, animal rescue advocates are literally going the…
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Waynesville on target with sidewalk construction
 

Waynesville on target with sidewalk construction

Waynesville is a leader when it comes walkable communities, according to a consultant hired to develop a long-range pedestrian plan…
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Maggie Valley to compel Ghost Town to stabilize lingering slide threat
 

Maggie Valley to compel Ghost Town to stabilize lingering slide threat

Ghost Town is far from off the hook for repairing the latest landslide in Maggie Valley. The Rich Cove slide…
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‘Robinson Kephart,’ editor of adventure books
 

‘Robinson Kephart,’ editor of adventure books

My weekly deadline is looming. I’m not sure how this is going to turn out. But I’ve been thinking about…
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Sylva board blesses Community Table move
 

Sylva board blesses Community Table move

Community Table, Sylva’s nonprofit community kitchen, has outgrown its existing facility and is targeting a move to the town’s now-vacant…
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Double your money and land on the Wall of Fame
 

Double your money and land on the Wall of Fame

In today’s economy, people want to stretch their dollars to the max. What if you could actually double your money?…
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Tract with road side views of Cowee Mound conserved
 

Tract with road side views of Cowee Mound conserved

The Land Trust for the Little Tennessee has saved a key tract from development along the Little Tennessee River near…
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Fighting hunger, one bowl at a time
 

Fighting hunger, one bowl at a time

Fill a bowl, feed a soul, and help fight hunger with a warm heart and a full stomach. The second…
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The Naturalist's Corner
 

The Naturalist's Corner

White Nose Syndrome just miles from WNC The Tennessee Wildlife Resource Agency (TWRA) announced in mid-February that two bats from…
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Sylva pedestrian plan takes shape
 

Sylva pedestrian plan takes shape

The Town of Sylva finalized an agreement with the N.C. Department of Transportation last week that clears the way for…
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No relief for crowded schools
 

No relief for crowded schools

Despite using every nook and cranny available, Swain County schools are still struggling to track down classroom space for its…
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Volunteers fight to save animals from euthanasia
 

Volunteers fight to save animals from euthanasia

Thousands of animals end up in the shelters of Western North Carolina each year, and a small group of volunteers,…
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Sylva woman shares experience of Chile earthquake
 

Sylva woman shares experience of Chile earthquake

Sylva resident Susannah Patty thought her trip to Chile would be an adventure, but she didn’t count on living through…
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Haywood health board gets more than it bargains for
 

Haywood health board gets more than it bargains for

A proposed health board rule in Haywood County has reignited a debate about how far officials can go when it…
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Cullowhee school grows beyond expectations
 

Cullowhee school grows beyond expectations

Landmark Learning based in Jackson County offers 80 courses a year providing wilderness medical training to 2,000 people across all…
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Cherokee hospital uses art to build community
 

Cherokee hospital uses art to build community

When the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians took over the Cherokee Indian Hospital from the Indian Health Service in 2002,…
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A requiem for Cataloochee
 

A requiem for Cataloochee

Requiem by Fire by Wayne Caldwell. Random House, 2009. 335 pages Dear readers, if you have some slight respect for…
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Elder abuse case shines light on larger issue
 

Elder abuse case shines light on larger issue

If you believe people usually get what they deserve, then the recent conviction of a Jackson County man on elder…
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Ghost Town faces June deadline to stave off foreclosure
 

Ghost Town faces June deadline to stave off foreclosure

Ghost Town in the Sky amusement park could be foreclosed on as early as June unless investors step forward with…
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A guidebook for raising boys
 

A guidebook for raising boys

Wild Things: The Art of Nurturing Boys by Stephen James and David Thomas. Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., 2009. 368 pages.…
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HART brings edgy plays to WNC — and succeeds
 

HART brings edgy plays to WNC — and succeeds

Any actor or director at Haywood Arts Regional Theater will tell you there’s nothing wrong with “The Sound of Music.”…
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Presentation of Carden plays to benefit library fund
 

Presentation of Carden plays to benefit library fund

Two plays crafted by Sylva writer Gary Carden will be presented at Western Carolina University in March to benefit the…
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Macon Airport runway extension faces more questions
 

Macon Airport runway extension faces more questions

Macon County Airport Authority members are confident their application with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is moving forward, but…
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EPA takes aim at Canton paper mill
 

EPA takes aim at Canton paper mill

A water pollution permit for the Canton paper mill has come under fire by the Environmental Protection Agency. The pollution…
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The calm of a winter’s night
 

The calm of a winter’s night

It’s Saturday night as I write this .... going on toward midnight. I read the thermometer mounted outside the kitchen…
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Rickman Store celebrates 85 years
 

Rickman Store celebrates 85 years

A community-wide open house celebration featuring a full day of entertainment and cultural events will mark the 85th anniversary of…
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DOT plans ahead to stave off slides
 

DOT plans ahead to stave off slides

Rather than continuing a reactive approach to rockslides on Interstate 40, the DOT is making a widespread effort to prevent…
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Evergreen’s fate is important to WNC
 

Evergreen’s fate is important to WNC

Mix a strong environmental ethos, economic realism and strong community pride all together in the same brain (mine, in this…
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Delays in rock slide cleanup push back I-40 opening
 

Delays in rock slide cleanup push back I-40 opening

Harsh winter weather has delayed the reopening of Interstate 40 until late April, according to the North Carolina Department of…
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Family hopes elder abuse case will help future victims
 

Family hopes elder abuse case will help future victims

The conviction of former Jackson County employee Marc Hawk on elder abuse charges last month closed the book on a…
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Tapping the power of the sun
 

Tapping the power of the sun

Progress Energy customers can now claim a fraction of their power comes from the sun. A new solar farm is…
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Swain County moratorium could stop Duke substation
 

Swain County moratorium could stop Duke substation

Swain County has entered the fight over Duke Energy’s proposed electrical substation that would mar views in a rural farming…
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Budget cuts put fairgrounds in a bind, forcing county back to the table
 

Budget cuts put fairgrounds in a bind, forcing county back to the table

With a large loan payment looming and not enough money to pay it, the fairgrounds turned to Haywood commissioners this…
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Beating bugs the natural way
 

Beating bugs the natural way

It all started with a stranger’s death. At the time, Carl Hughes was working as a construction supervisor for the…
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Sylva may be stuck with cell tower
 

Sylva may be stuck with cell tower

The Sylva Town Board opposes the construction of a 195-foot-high cellular communications tower on the main commercial drag of N.C.…
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The Naturalist's Corner
 

The Naturalist's Corner

ake J eagle Not a winter has passed in the last four years or so that a bald eagle —…
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Cherokee outfitter store to offer premium guide service
 

Cherokee outfitter store to offer premium guide service

Cherokee’s trout streams have earned their reputation as the crown jewel of North Carolina’s trophy waters, and now the area…
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