fr littlejohnA Swain County social worker pleaded guilty in court this week to doctoring and fabricating records two years ago following the death of a 15-month-old baby.

Despite a big wish list, Swain County school leaders won’t be asking the county for more money next year.

Swain school officials instead have posed a quite modest request — just don’t cut our budget. 

Magic in a bottle

art frIf you build it, they will come. 

If you brew it, they will come and party.

Celebrating the fourth release in their “Trail Magic Ale” series, Nantahala Brewing Company in Bryson City will host a weekend of music and craft beer on March 22-23. The festivities are all in an effort to showcase the adventurous spirit of Southern Appalachia and the mystical ways of the Appalachian Trail that runs through the heart of Western North Carolina.

fr corkandbeanWhen a building on a town’s main street sits empty, either because a business closed down or moved away, it’s usually a bad omen.

Swain County School administrators began an internal investigation Friday after videos surfaced of a “fight club” among ninth grade boys in the gym locker room at Swain County High School.

Swain County could receive as much as $2 million in , one-time grant funding from the Golden LEAF Foundation for community betterment projects.

A long overdue $4 million payment may finally make its way to Swain County after languishing for the past year in the budget dungeons of the National Park Service.

The payment is part of a larger $52 million cash settlement the federal government pledged to pay Swain County — a deal intended to finally compensate the county for a road that was flooded when Fontana Lake was built in the 1940s.

Plans for a riverfront park behind the historic courthouse in Bryson City got a boost thanks to $150,000 from the N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund.

coverOfficer Michael Harrison has confiscated everything from buck knives and Airsoft pistols from students at Swain High — but never a real gun. Until last week.

Harrison and the principal discovered a .22 Remington rifle and assorted ammunition in the tool-box of student’s pick-up truck left behind in the school parking lot after the 17-year-old was arrested for unrelated charges.

coverThe Smoky Mountain News takes note this week of some of the newsmakers of 2012 by handing out our annual awards. Back issues of the newspaper never fail to reveal a variety of humdingers: the funny, the astonishing, the interesting, the dismaying. Some we’d like to forget, others we love to relive for the good laughs they bring.

For those who made the list, hats off to you for giving us something to write about this year. For those who didn’t, there’s always 2013.

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