Arts + Entertainment

fr pawnshopsSecondhand dealers in Franklin will soon be required to report their pawned items electronically to the police department within 48 hours, or they could face a $500 fine. 

The new requirement, which will go into effect July 1, doesn’t seem to bother many pawnshop owners who are already submitting their pawn tickets through a nationwide searchable database called Leads Online. 

art frJohn MacLean will never forget his first photo shoot.

“I was 19 years old and it was at a meat packing plant in New Jersey,” he said.

Standing in the basement of the Cullowhee Methodist Church at Western Carolina University last Saturday, MacLean told two-dozen folks of the Sylva Photo Club about how he got into the business.

fr scottishScotland’s roots run deep in Western North Carolina. Since before this country’s inception, Scottish immigrants have been migrating to these hills that remind them of home. 

So, it makes sense that the only museum outside of Scotland that’s dedicated to the Scottish tartan — the various criss-cross patterns most associated with kilts — is nestled in an unassuming storefront on Franklin’s Main Street.

fr greaseThe new wastewater treatment facility in Franklin cost the town more than $5 million to build, but within months of its summer 2013 opening, superintendent Wayne Price noticed a problem. 

“Within six months of putting that into operation, we had fats build up on the walls,” Price said. “It was already getting 2 inches, 3 or 4 inches of fat all around, and there’s no way for us to treat it. We had to do something.”

fr franklinDowntown Franklin is sporting some fresh paint after an October decision to spruce up the fading road lines, but over the winter town aldermen will be considering some changes that could be a tad more noticeable.

“During the winter when things slow down a little bit, it will give us time to think about it in more depth,” said Mayor Bob Scott. 

op nikwasiBy Bob Scott • Guest Columnist

In a letter to the editor published in the Nov. 5 edition of  The Smoky Mountain News, Rachel Truesdell wrote that as mayor, I “have a lot of explaining to do because most of the arguments in the media from the Town of Franklin are horribly invalid and definitely culturally insensitive.” She was speaking of the Nikwasi Mound.

Of the shoppers polled while coming and going from the Bi-Lo parking lot in Franklin on a recent Thursday, none had to be told what Nikwasi Mound was, and nearly all were aware that the town of Franklin and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians are currently at odds about the mound’s future. 

When a property tax bill for the old town hall building showed up in the Town of Franklin’s mail, John Henning, the town’s attorney, was surprised. The bill called for a payment of $2,872.22 on a property that Henning said, as a piece of public property, should be exempt from property tax. 

The Franklin Town Board unanimously approved a petition to rezone a small piece of property off Clyde Street at its meeting Oct. 6, but the public comment preceding that decision was far from unanimous.  

“My main concern is if it does become commercial, things may change and some of the improvements we’ve done to our home will start to fade,” Miguel Santos, 15, told the board, “and I would just really appreciate it if it would stay residential for the peace of our neighborhood and our home.”

Franklin leaders made their intention to keep Nikwasi Mound in town possession clear this week, rejecting a formal call from the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians to hand over the property. 

The resolution, passed unanimously, declares that the mound will continue to stay in town possession but that Franklin is open to working out an agreement with the tribe for them to maintain the site.

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