Cherokee businesses feel pandemic impact

With the economic powerhouse that is Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort surfacing as one of the pandemic era’s most-impacted local businesses, it stands to reason that the future of Cherokee’s business community would be among the region’s most uncertain. 

Why not grow? Mike Coble’s hope for downtown Waynesville

By Boyd Allsbrook • Contributing writer | It’s 10 O’Clock on a Monday morning. I stroll into J. Gabriel Home and Gifts on Waynesville’s Main Street and am greeted by a blur of commotion. Though the store’s just opened, people are already popping in and milling around displays of jewelry, clothes and chocolate truffles. There’s a flash of grey fur by my feet and I’m suddenly being nuzzled by a gorgeous ice-eyed husky. Pleasantly shocked, I reach down to pet it, but am interrupted by a short whistle that sends the dog careening away across the shop. 

Half of 2020 is behind us, thank goodness

I was walking my animal last night at sunset, enjoying the evening views and cool temps, thinking back to the July 4 weekend. Along the way, it hit me that half of 2020 is now in the history books. The verdict is still out as to how this time will be viewed by those who look back, but hell, it sure feels like the world is in a different orbit.

Economic development boom in Maggie Valley

After years of languishing in the shadows of a shuttered amusement park, Maggie Valley’s west end is now seeing substantial commercial development resulting in several major new or renovated businesses. 

Customer service should be a powerful connection

By Gerri Wolfe Grady • Special to SMN | Customer service is an important commodity for any business and particularly to those locations reliant on tourism. This is an area that isn’t necessarily taught or trained with new employees, often because of time constraints or because the business owner hasn’t given it any thought. This essay was developed to provide a different view of customer service and how it was conveyed for 20 years by my father, Jerry Wolfe, greeter at the Museum of the Cherokee Indian.

Looking for answers in a time of uncertainty

By Bob Scott • Guest Columnist | I am in the market for a good, slightly used, Ouija Board.  I need it to make accurate predictions of what is to come in Franklin and our westernmost counties as we face uncertain times and as we begin to reopen. 

COVID-19 has been devastating health-wise as well as economically. 

TekTone becomes majority owner of Stay Smart Care

As part of its mission to continuously provide communication solutions that evolve with the needs of our world, TekTone (based in Franklin, N.C.) has acquired majority ownership in Stay Smart Care, a company whose expertise lies in Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) solutions. Stay Smart Care will operate as a subsidiary of TekTone, allowing the two companies to provide a wider variety of intercommunication solutions and resources to care providers in a variety of markets.

One-way traffic proposed for Main Street in Waynesville

As small businesses begin to reopen following the Coronavirus Pandemic, some cities and towns are finding creative ways to help their businesses recover from the shutdown. 

Haywood takes steps to open businesses safely

Since the Coronavirus Pandemic began in earnest in Haywood County in mid-March, emergency physician Dr. Mark Jaben has been the face of the county’s response, so much so that he’s now regularly stopped on the area’s hiking trails by strangers exclaiming, “Hey, you’re the guy from YouTube!”

What we do to survive, and why

It seems every time I sit down to write these days, it has something to do with journalism and the state of our industry. Forgive me my obsession, but during this time of isolation it’s difficult to concentrate for long on any other topic. I am obsessed — a strong word, I know, but the truth —  with steering our company through this strange, once-in-a-lifetime business disruption.

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