Building a community that’s resilient to climate change
On April 17, 2021, volunteers from Haywood Waterways, Haywood Community College, Climate Action Coalition, and others, gathered at River’s Edge Park in Clyde. Our job was to plant native species of deep-rooted trees and shrubs to stabilize the banks of the Pigeon River. There was a sense of urgency. When the job was done and over 40 specimens were planted, the group gathered together to share some thoughts.
Finishing the job: Canton budgets for the future 18 months after Fred
When Canton officials and administrators met for their annual budget retreat last year, Town Manager Nick Scheuer’s presentation was riddled with question marks — signs of uncertainty after widespread flooding caused more than $18 million in damages to town infrastructure and killed six.
Canton selects architects for municipal buildings
The town that refuses to stay down made another big move toward getting back on its feet last week, selecting architects who will design replacements for municipal buildings that were damaged or destroyed during flooding in August 2021.
Emergency watershed protection coming to East Fork
Asheville-based McGill Associates will begin work to provide emergency watershed protection in areas affected by Tropical Storm Fred after Haywood commissioners approved an $800,000 contract on Jan. 17, but at least one commissioner thinks it may not be enough.
The truth about climate change is staring us down
The truth, even when it’s staring you down Clint Eastwood style, is easier to ignore than to act on. Just human nature, I guess, but something has to give.
‘It can’t be like that all the time’: Farmers recover from Fred amid inflation, weather worries
When Gary Griffith woke up a rainy Tuesday on Aug. 17, 2021, he never imagined that by the next morning, the 12 acres of green peppers he’d grown along the Pigeon River in Bethel would rest in drifts miles downstream, the unofficial symbol of the catastrophic tragedy that was Tropical Storm Fred.
This must be the place: Ode to the flood, ode to Cruso, Bethel and Canton
Sitting on a barstool at The Water’n Hole in Waynesville last Monday afternoon, I took a pull from the cold Budweiser bottle and let out a slight sigh. Stories and tales were being exchanged all along the bar counter about where folks were and what they were doing during “The Great Flood of 2021.”
A year later, there is still much to be done
Earlier this week, I had started writing a column about the progress made in the year since the flooding from Tropical Storm devastated parts of Haywood County. Then, as I started talking to our writers about the stories they were preparing for this week’s edition — one year after the flood — I could tell they had the recovery efforts well covered.
After the Flood: Trying times, trauma, trepidation and triumph
Hours earlier, Natasha Bright had been trapped atop a bunk bed in a barricaded bedroom with her dogs, her cats and her brother, watching the floodwaters from the furious Pigeon River rising through the floorboards beneath them, but after a long, cold, wet night the waters finally receded so with an armful of children’s clothing and mud squishing between her toes, Bright headed out of Cruso on foot into the pale sunshine looking for a shower.
Haywood Schools still face deluge of flood repairs
On Tuesday afternoon, Aug. 17, 2021, the second day of the school year, Haywood County Schools Superintendent Dr. Bill Nolte announced that school would be closed the following day. “Early and extensive flooding from Tropical Storm Fred” had damaged several roads used for bus routes, and there was uncertainty about scheduled food deliveries to the school system. It would be an optional workday for teachers, not a remote learning day for students.