President Trump thanks Mills River business

President Donald Trump made an appearance in Mills River on Monday, touting a food program designed to reduce food insecurity and retain jobs in North Carolina’s critically important agriculture sector. 

Open Door goes mobile with Salvation Army help

The Coronavirus Pandemic has made it that much more difficult for many low income and unsheltered individuals to feed themselves especially with Frog Level’s Open Door being closed, but thanks to a partnership with the Salvation Army, volunteers will soon be able to take meals, mail and clothing to people who need it. 

Food and beverage industry reels from Coronavirus Pandemic

Last Tuesday, on what would normally be a bustling St. Patrick’s Day, owner Dan Elliot sat in his empty Sweet Onion restaurant in the heart of Waynesville’s downtown tourist district just after sharing some difficult news with his staff of 34 employees. 

The long wait is finally over

I didn’t know how much I would miss Shoney’s biscuits and gravy, potato soup, and hot fudge cake until they were torn cruelly away from me a few years ago. Locals will remember the day when that bright, shining “Shoney’s on the hill” — as we came to call it — was sacrificed on the altar of road improvements. Indeed, the road has improved, especially now that people have more or less learned how to use the roundabout in a way that they have not over in Jackson County, where many drivers continue to struggle with the concept of “yield.”

It’s time for hog jowls and greens

Editor’s note: This article first appeared in a November 2003 edition of The Smoky Mountain News.

When I was a boy, mother had to force me to eat cooked greens. But the older I get the more I have looked forward to eating them. 

Feeding the fight against food insecurity

On one of the first warm sunny Saturdays early in Western North Carolina’s tourist season, the traditional signs of a Maggie Valley summer — small groups of motorcycles and pedestrians idling down Soco Road — were on full display. Not far off, on a small parcel of land nestled between a Baptist church and a distillery, a different group of people was planting some seasonal signs of their own. 

This must be the place: Chasing the American Dream of Breakfast

It’s the only way to eat breakfast.

Two eggs, two slices of toast (cut into four triangular pieces), a side of meat, a side of hashbrowns or homefries, a cup of coffee and the day’s newspaper alongside. It is, quite literally, the American Dream in a meal.

From enemy to ally: Kudzu Camp seeks to overturn misconceptions

It was 1983 when Avram Friedman first rolled into Sylva, driving the repurposed school bus that was home for him, his wife and their 18-month-old son during their cross-country trek from California. They were looking for a more permanent living situation, and while most would have passed over the 3-acre property that is still the Friedman family home, to Avram it was perfect — mainly because the land and the house combined cost only $12,000. 

“We didn’t have any money,” Avram laughed. “We were just poor hippies.”

Trail town chow down: Franklin A.T. season launches with hiker meal

When Sharon Van Horn organized the first-ever Thru-Hiker Chow Down in Franklin, she and her husband Bill were pretty fresh off the trail themselves. 

The Van Horns started hiking the 2,000-plus-mile Appalachian Trail piecemeal in 2005, getting more serious about it in 2010 and completing two 300-mile sections per year thereafter until their 2013 finish. During that time, they became well acquainted with the ways of hikers, from Georgia up to Maine. 

Whatever you think honey, really

“I’m absolutely starving,” my wife says, digging through her purse for something as I walk into the kitchen, clearing my throat to get her attention. “Wow, don’t YOU look nice!”

I do feel pretty spiffy. I am wearing my new brown pants and a striped blue shirt. My belt and my shoes match. My hair is combed and sprayed, though it is really not so much “hair” as the suggestion of hair, a few brave and resilient strands that remind me on darker days of crabgrass growing in the crack of a sidewalk. She finds this preferable to the way I used to wear my hair, which is not at all — in those lonely days before she came into my life, I shaved my head, fancying that I looked more like Yul Brynner or Mister Clean than Uncle Fester.

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