Jessi Stone

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Updated at 10 a.m. Sept. 15: The Waynesville Board of Alderman voted unanimously at Tuesday night's meeting for the town to take over management of the Municipal Service District due to the resignation of Downtown Waynesville Association executive board members. 

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Planning events during the COVID-19 Pandemic has been no picnic. Just as businesses and agencies make plans for their next festival or fundraiser, the virus takes another unexpected turn. 

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Already in an affordable housing crisis, Haywood County agencies are now confronted with trying to find emergency housing for families displaced by the devastating floods on Aug. 17. 

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“This is my kind of church.”

That’s how one participant described the lunar women’s circles I started hosting recently.

Folkmoot Executive Director Glenn Fields has announced his plans to return to Louisiana in a memorandum to the Folkmoot Board of Directors this week. In his announcement, Fields related having received an offer for a position with The Acadian Center for the Arts in Lafayette, Louisiana, as the programming director, a position he had sought three years ago.

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A group of Western North Carolina residents has filed a class action lawsuit against Mission Health System and its parent corporation HCA Healthcare, claiming the health care giants are operating a monopoly that violates North Carolina’s antitrust and consumer protection laws. 

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A couple of Haywood County businesses have had to shut their doors temporarily after several employees were exposed to COVID-19.

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A video showing two white men and one Black woman wielding a machete in the middle of Georgia Road in Franklin on Aug. 8 circulated on social media, causing misinformation to spread in the community. 

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People keep talking about summer coming to an end, and I’m not ready for that yet! I know kids are returning to school over the next couple of weeks, but there is still plenty of time to fit in a few more summer adventures. 

Two of Swain County’s largest tourism brands — Nantahala Outdoor Center and Great Smoky Mountains Railroad — are engaged in a lawsuit regarding right-of-way access over the railroad tracks. 

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Like much of the U.S., North Carolina’s efforts to recover from the COVID-19 Pandemic are backsliding as the Delta Variant of the virus has caused cases to trend upward once again. 

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It’s come to my attention that there are still some women out there who’ve never been to a passion party and that must change.

Macon County commissioners recently approved $55,000 worth of emergency funds to KIDS Place Child Advocacy Center to ensure the nonprofit can continue to offer services to children who’ve experienced trauma. 

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Swain County Board of Commissioners plans to pass a resolution showing the county’s support for Medicaid expansion in North Carolina following a presentation from Casey Cooper, CEO of the Cherokee Indian Hospital.

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The Macon County Public Library provides a number of diverse educational opportunities for youth, but a book display promoting Pride Month in June led to several parent complaints at the last board of county commissioners’ meeting. 

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No matter where your house is located, how much sun it gets or how inept you think you are at caring for another living species, there is the right house plant for you.

In what feels like a never-ending quest to feel my best, I’ve been working on honing in on my health and feeding my body the nutrition it needs. 

I’ve been an official member of Women of Waynesville since 2015, but even before that I say I was an honorary member since 2013 when I moved here and met this amazing group of women. 

“Were there any cars in the parking lot when you got here?” Lisa Morris asked. 

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Having just celebrated the Summer Solstice last weekend, there is something so exciting and magical about welcoming the Strawberry Super Moon this week. 

Macon County commissioners are trying to move forward with plans to give the Nantahala community a new library and community center, but disagreements over where the facilities should be located could further stall the process. 

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Trying to speak honestly about the relationship I have with my dad can feel icky. It’s complicated — and I’m sure many of you can relate.

If your dad is like mine, finding a good gift can be difficult, but really what your dad wants is to spend some quality time with you. So here are a few Dad Date ideas for this weekend.

Ashten McKinney is the new kid on the block, but already she’s making friends with her neighbors and offering a welcoming, safe space for her community. 

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JE Dunn Construction was hired by HCA Healthcare to build the new Angel Medical Center in Franklin, but Superintendent Steve Suttles recently told the town council the company wanted to be remembered for improving the town’s future in another way.

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Macon County commissioners approved the 2021-22 fiscal budget, but two Republican commissioners opposed its passage because they disagreed with increasing the tax rate. 

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While everyone with families takes advantage of the summer months off from school by getting out of town for a while, I prefer to spend the summer months right here in Western North Carolina. 

County Manager Derek Roland was tasked with delivering a flat budget for the 2021-22 budget year, but after countless hours of heated discussions, Macon County Commissioners approved increasing property taxes with a narrow majority. 

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Some of us were there to get out of the house. Some of us were there to escape our grief. Some of us were there to strengthen our aging bodies. Some of us were there to get away from our husbands. Some of us were there to let go of stress and control. Some of us were called by a higher power to be there. 

All of us were meant to be there. 

The amount of time Legal Aid lawyers spend on helping clients with housing issues doubled during the pandemic.

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Dogwood Health Trust recently invested in affordable housing initiatives in Haywood and Jackson counties by awarding a $872,671 grant to Mountain Projects.

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Swain County will hold a public hearing at 6 p.m. June 10 to give residents an opportunity to comment on the 2021-22 proposed county budget. 

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May 29 is National College Savings Plan Day, and the NC 529 Plan through the College Foundation of North Carolina is celebrating with a new giveaway to promote saving for education and planning for the future.

There is so much I love about Brandi Carlile I don’t even know where to begin, but at the moment I am in love with her memoir released last month, “Broken Horses.”

Helping Hands of Haywood is a new nonprofit that is making a tremendous difference in the community by reaching out to help those most in need. For Mental Health Awareness Month, Director Nicole Kott shares more about the organization's mission and how experiencing homelessness impacts people's mental health.

Plans to construct a new Franklin High School are back on the table as Macon County commissioners weigh the costs — financially and politically. 

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A packed room of Macon County residents pleaded with county commissioners during a May 13 meeting to provide the school system with more funding for arts education. 

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After passing a resolution at its May 13 meeting, Swain County will be asking its state representatives to introduce legislation that would allow the county to levy an additional 2 percent room tax.

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Because it’s Mental Health Awareness Month, Rumble reached out to someone who deals with behavioral health issues in Western North Carolina. Becca Swanger, the Jackson County Director for Meridian Behavioral Health Services, took the time to answer some questions about how people are coping with mental health during the pandemic.

The Franklin Town Council board room was standing room only last week as several local teenagers expressed their desire for a skatepark to be developed somewhere within the town limits. 

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There are so many ways to celebrate Mother's Day in Western North Carolina, whether you take her out for a meal, sign her up for a spa day or take her out on a date! Here are just a few highlighted special events going on across the region to make the day extra special. 

The Town of Bryson City has been removed from a piece of state legislation that would have allowed the town to levy its own occupancy tax and establish its own tourism development governing board.

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HCA Healthcare officially broke ground last Friday morning on a $68 million facility to replace Angel Medical Center in Franklin.

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I’ve spent many years wondering about how to stay motivated — personally and professionally. I’ve read a ton of books and listened to a shit ton of podcasts about it. I’ve worked with a life coach and I’ve gone to therapy. I’ve researched and asked other inspirational women around me. So now I’m going to pass on what I’ve learned to all of you to save you the time.

A group of women across several local and statewide organizations came together during the pandemic last summer to make sure people’s needs were being met during such a difficult time. Now the group has organized its third Community Resource Fair, which is scheduled for 3 to 5 p.m. May 5 at the First United Methodist Church in Waynesville.

Professors at Western Carolina University are tired of just talking about the importance of diversity within the teaching industry and are committed to turning all the talk into meaningful movement forward. 

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Since I started hiking in late 2019, I have a new appreciation for the land in which we occupy here in Western North Carolina. 

Dr. Diana Messer, a forensic anthropology professor at Western Carolina University, is working on groundbreaking research that could drastically improve the methods used to estimate the timeframe of a child’s injury, which is essential evidence needed to identify and prosecute child abuse cases. 

Franklin Town Manager Summer Woodard recently submitted her resignation letter after accepting a position as the town manager of Reidsville. 

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Habitat for Humanity of Haywood County plays a major part in helping people toward financial freedom, and many of these people are women — single moms, with kids, taking care of their parents, trying to get back on their feet. It’s a beautiful transition to watch unfold because when women are able to find a secure and affordable home, more possibilities unfold in their lives. 

Habitat for Humanity’s Executive Director Jamye Sheppard has a true passion for helping others help themselves and recently took the time to talk to Rumble about a new exciting fundraising opportunity for women in the community. The Ladies Level Up campaign to raise $60,000 to build a Habitat home in Waynesville is a testament to how women from all walks of life can come together to make a big difference in the lives of other women. So far, the campaign has raised $30,000 and is well on its way to reaching the $60,000 goal.

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