SMN staff

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A horse in Henderson County has been tested for suspected equine infectious anemia shortly after a horse in Surry County was found positive for the disease. 

The National Park Service has found that allowing an underground natural gas pipeline within the Blue Ridge Parkway will have no significant impact on Park Service resources. 

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Progress continues on the Hurricane Ridge Fire, which in a final update from the U.S. Forest Service Friday, Dec. 2, was 796 acres with 55% containment.

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A proposed management plan for Laurel Falls Trail in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park is out for public comment through Friday, Jan. 6. 

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Help save hemlock trees from the hemlock wooly adelgid by participating in one of the several upcoming volunteer workdays organized by the Hemlock Restoration Initiative. Each volunteer will be paired with an experienced, licensed professional who will offer instruction and guidance on treating hemlock trees with insecticide that prevents infestation. 

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Friday Night Ski & Snowboard is back through Jackson County Parks and Recreation, with group rates available on Fridays to ride Cataloochee Ski Area. 

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A Holiday Homecoming event 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 10, at Oconaluftee Visitor Center in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Cherokee will offer visitors of all ages the chance to celebrate Southern Appalachian winter holiday traditions. 

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Mountain Projects and Waynesville Rotary Club paired for many years to coordinate a popular Christmas holiday blanket drive.

The Western North Carolina Historical has selected author Brent Martin’s “George Masa’s Wild Vision: A Japanese Immigrant Imagines Western North Carolina” for the 2022 Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award.

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Students from Western Carolina University’s Kimmel School of Construction recently had the opportunity to participate in real-world construction scenarios at the Associated Schools of Construction Region II competition in Atlanta.

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Jackson County Americana/folk duo Bird in Hand will perform at 6 p.m. Friday, Dec. 16, at Mountain Layers Brewing Company in Bryson City.

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A special holiday production of “A Christmas Story” will hit the stage at 7:30 p.m. Dec. 9-10, 16-17 and at 2 p.m. Dec. 11 and 18 at the Haywood Arts Regional Theatre in Waynesville.

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With Thanksgiving in the rearview mirror, the holidays are in full swing.

The Wildlife in North Carolina Photo Competition is now open, accepting entries until 5 p.m. Jan. 31, 2023.

The North Carolina Parks and Recreation Authority, which oversees the Parks and Recreation Trust Fund, recently approved $17.4 million to fund nine capital improvement projects and six land acquisitions for North Carolina state parks.

Winners of EcoForesters’ Annual Awards were announced this month, celebrating achievement in ecological forestry and highlighting important issues that the region’s forest face — and the people making a difference. 

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The Joyce Kilmer National Recreation Trail in Graham County is reopen after more than two years of closure. 

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One of rock-n-roll’s legendary events is being recreated as a musical with “One Christmas Night in Memphis” hitting the stage at 7 p.m. Friday, Dec. 9, at the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin.

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Beloved Appalachian storyteller, author and playwright Gary Carden will be telling tall tales from 6 to 7 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 7, in the Meeting Room at the Macon County Public Library in Franklin.

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To the Editor: Here I am, a constitutional conservative who for 40-plus years has voted, held office, and worked as a Republican volunteer, sitting at my computer feeling thrilled to death over the Republican red wave that wasn’t.

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To the Editor: Rob Schofield in last week’s Smoky Mountain News decried the current Supreme Court of the United States (SCOTUS) as “political” because it has taken the words in the Constitution literally and seriously. Seriously?

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To the Editor: A college football coach will tell you there are three basic units that comprise a football team: offense, defense and special teams.

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Western Carolina University’s human remains detection cadaver dog training program was recently awarded the 2022 University Professional and Continuing Education Association award for special populations at the UPCEA South Conference in Atlanta.

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Students from Western Carolina University were given the opportunity to network with students from other Southern Conference schools and expand their knowledge of other academic areas at the SoCon Undergraduate Research Forum held in October.

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In a five-year agreement to improve watersheds on national forests and grasslands, the U.S. Forest Service will give Trout Unlimited up to $40 million for projects including cleanup of abandoned mines, removing barriers to improve fish passage and stream habitat improvements. 

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Environmental groups in Haywood, Buncombe and Madison Counties were recently awarded grants totaling $197,500 from the Pigeon River Fund of The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina.

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Drought conditions have improved across much of the state following rains from Tropical Depression Nicole, but the westernmost counties remain quite dry. 

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Work has started on a $1.3 million effort to repair bridges at 19 locations in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, with construction to continue through August 2023. 

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A project to improve a tributary to Shelton Branch that runs through East Street Park in Waynesville is now complete. Through the project, the stream was relocated and raised up in order to address erosion and protect town utility infrastructure. Meanwhile, the stream corridor through the park was improved for public enjoyment.

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Old Saint Nick will visit Chimney Rock State Park in Rutherford County Saturdays, Dec. 3 and 10, for the 25th year running practicing his chimney-climbing game on the iconic rock as Christmas festivities abound. 

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To the Editor:

By the time you read this letter, we will have outcomes of the 2022 mid-term elections.

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To the Editor:

Long-time Haywood County resident Kitty Phillips passed on Election Day this month.

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To the Editor:

Driving through Sylva today I noticed the steps of the old courthouse beautifully decorated with rows of American flags. It was breathtaking. This display was in observance of Veterans Day, and I was filled full with pride and gratitude.

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A dispute about a pig that escalated into attempted murder ended last week with a Tuckasegee man ordered to serve at least two decades in prison, District Attorney Ashley Hornsby Welch said.

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Jackson County Sheriff’s deputies arrested a former Cashiers resident this week for first-degree murder, Sheriff Chip Hall said. 

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George Vanderbilt first opened Biltmore, his magnificent private estate, to family and friends on Christmas Eve 1895. Today, his descendants continue welcoming guests with that same spirit of gracious hospitality.

Cataloochee Ski Area opened for the season Monday, Nov. 14, after starting snowmaking with the onset of cold weather the previous day. 

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A new agreement between the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians and the U.S. Forest Service will allow the two entities to collaborate on management of the tribe’s 54,000 acres of forestland. 

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The latest drought map released Nov. 10 shows strengthening drought in the mountain region, but significant rain from Tropical Depression Nicole that fell after the Nov. 8 data cutoff may result in an improved situation when the new map comes out Nov. 17. 

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An environmental assessment investigating potential impacts of water and wastewater system repairs at Balsam Mountain Campground and Heintooga Picnic Area in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park came back with a finding of no significant impact, meaning the park can proceed with the project. 

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A $250,000 grant from the Tennessee Valley Authority’s Connected Communities Pilot Program will support development of a second campus for the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. 

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To the Editor:

Let me start by saying that on November 8 I worked the polls, and the views I am expressing are strictly my own and should in no way reflect the opinions or policies of the Haywood County Board of Elections and its staff.

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To the Editor:

Could someone please explain to me why an experienced, qualified tax collector who has successfully run the office for Haywood County was voted out in favor of a college student with no experience and no qualifications that I am aware of?

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To the Editor:

I would like to express my gratitude to the Macon County community for their support and encouragement throughout my campaign for county commissioner.

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The Haywood 4 Good community wellness program is pleased to announce a new feature: continuous enrollment. Participants may register for the current session any time before the end of December.

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Haywood Regional Medical Center announced that Chris Brown has been named chief executive officer (CEO), effective Nov. 28, 2022. 

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On Sept. 14, 2022, Vecinos, a free clinic for uninsured, low-income adults in Western North Carolina, received a $1 million grant from the USDA Emergency Rural Health Care Grant to assist in renovating the upcoming Community Health Hub in Franklin.

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Americana/bluegrass star Darren Nicholson will be joined by Tim McWilliams, William Ritter and Audie Blaylock, with the group performing at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Dec. 13, at the Folkmoot Friendship Center in Waynesville.

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