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Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Opportunity for Highlands birders

Free, weekly bird-watching trips from the Highlands Plateau Audubon Society will start up in Highlands beginning May 3. Walks leave from Highlands Town Hall at 7:30 a.m., with binoculars, field guides and knowledgeable leaders provided. 
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Fishing festival to take over

A deluge of fly fishermen will soon descend on Western Carolina University. It’s the annual Southeastern Fly Fishing Festival, and for the second year in a row, it’s happening in Cullowhee. 
When I finally roll up Pavilion Road for my casting lesson, I’m nearly half an hour late. A wrong turn had set me back, but Mac Brown seems pretty unperturbed. He’s standing in the field uphill from the Swain County…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

A story in which nothing is as it seems

Early in this novel, an old retired teacher with Alzheimer’s, mistaking a visitor for his son, gives the young man a copy of a novel by Charles Brockton Brown and suggests that he read it. The novel is Wieland (1798,)…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Moscow Festival Ballet to hit Franklin stage

The Moscow Festival Ballet will perform “Sleeping Beauty” at 7:30 p.m. Friday, May 9, at the Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts in Franklin.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Art After Dark returns to Waynesville

Art After Dark continues from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, May 2, in downtown Waynesville.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:02

Blues, brews and BBQ

“Woofstock — Blues, Brews & BBQ” will be held from 2 to 8 p.m. Saturday, May 3, at McGuire Gardens in Sylva.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

REO Speedwagon to play Harrah’s

Iconic rockers REO Speedwagon will play at 9 p.m. Feb. 14 at Harrah’s Cherokee Event Center.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

This must be the place

What does a washboard, a bucket and a beard have in common? They make up the melodic magic that is The Reverend Peyton’s Big Damn Band. A three-piece country-blues outfit barreling out of southern Indiana, the group has one foot…
Running downhill with a tray of wine glasses, Janelle Trevino had a simple objective: she didn’t want to drop any. “It was intense,” Trevino said. “It’s a lot harder than it looks. I was pretty nervous.” A server at Tipping…
By Don Livingston • Guest Columnist Congress is not our most popular branch of government, not by a long shot. Its lowest job approval rating, according to one respectable polling organization, was 9 percent late last year. Earlier this year,…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Same-old, same-old just won’t work

To the Editor: I read with interest the article regarding Western Carolina University and the regional tourism conference with hopes of learning something new in the industry. Disappointment set in knowing that the same-old, same-old hadn’t changed over the years.…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

The Republicans are right

To the Editor: This may be liberal heresy, but it is true. Republicans are right about many things: “Family Values,” education and jobs. Republicans clearly saw the serious social damage caused by ignoring these issues. Republicans correctly argue that the…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Don’t let anyone buy your vote

To the Editor: Rumor has it that once again vote buying may be taking place in Swain County and on The Cherokee Reservation. These vote buyers will use cash, liquor or fear to get your vote, because your vote is…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Making adjustments for mom’s new job

Friday afternoon on the deck. The kids are home from school, and the three of us are enjoying another beautiful spring day, watching the squirrels and chickadees compete for the bird seed strewn all over the deck, thanks to the…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Cullowhee’s vision

A public input session regarding the future growth in Cullowhee is scheduled for 6 p.m. May 6 at the Cullowhee Valley School Library.  The session will focus on the Cullowhee Vision Plan, which has been prepared based upon comments provided…
A controversial proposal to roll back Jackson County’s steep slope rules has become politically charged in the countdown to county commissioner elections this fall — prompting the sitting commissioners to delay their discussion of it until after November.
Folkmoot USA International Dance Festival once again saw its grant funding cut by the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority. The  event that brings in international folk dance and music troupes from eight to 10 countries for a 10-day extravaganza has…
It’s an unenviable task, but one Haywood County tourism leaders face every year: weighing dozens of festivals and niche marketing campaigns vying for a share of tourism promotion dollars. Deciding which festivals hold the most promise for luring coveted tourists…
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Bridge Park is public place finalist

Whatever qualities make for an ideal public space, Sylva’s Bridge Park seems to have them. At least Sarah Graham thinks so.  “That’s exactly what everybody had in mind,” Graham said. 
The cemetery is up a dirt road, past an old barn and its bygone basketball  hoop. A tread-worn path leads up the hill, where Confederate reenactors have arrived in pickup trucks. 
By Jake Flannick • Correspondent He had gained enough wealth as a young marketing executive to fulfill almost any of his aspirations. But the very trappings of success are perhaps what led Justin Phillips, 33, to turn elsewhere for clarity.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Parsing out a position in party primaries

Next week is decision time for voters who disagree with the new conservative tack of North Carolina’s policy makers and want to reverse the emergent Republican majority now at the state’s helm.
It’s been three decades since the shooting range now operated by Southwestern Community College first opened, and the college is hoping for some money to address issues that have been mounting since then.
Not everyone was happy about the free shoes. Betty Cloer Wallace was more concerned about the “holy war.”
Give a museum director an open opportunity to tout his facility’s newest this, unique that and state-of-the-art these, and no one could blame him for taking it.    But talking with Bo Taylor wasn’t like that. Just named director in…
A life-sized bronze sculpture of three children catching tadpoles will soon have a new pad in the Frog Level district of downtown Waynesville.
Wednesday, 30 April 2014 00:00

Students get hands-on with science

Rocky Peebler’s wearing waders and a white T-shirt as he kneels on the shore of the Oconaluftee River. His boots are dripping from a recent foray into the river, and he’s picking through the critters wriggling across the surface of…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 15:11

Greening Up the Mountains 2014

The 17th annual Greening Up the Mountains Festival will be held from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 26, in downtown Sylva. Named for the way spring’s green gradually progresses up a mountain, the festival is Sylva’s largest annual…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:19

Behind the ballad of Kidder Cole

Judge Felix E. Alley (1873-1957) was a native of Whiteside Cove, near Cashiers and Highlands. During most of his legal career as an attorney and superior court judge, he resided in Waynesville and served, on occasion, as the attorney for…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:16

Spring celebration planned for Parkway

Live raptors, green building and spring flowers will all be part of the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Greening of the Parkway special event, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, April 26, at the Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center.  In this combined…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:11

Wildflower Whimsy kicks off in Highlands

The Wildflower Whimsy event, May 2-3, at the Highlands Biological Foundation, will feature guided garden tours, a live plant auction and reception — with live music — guided wildflower walks and a lecture. At 6 p.m. on Friday, Peter Loewer…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:09

Farmers market kicks off in Waynesville

Another season is underway for Haywood’s Historic Farmers Market, which starts up again at 8 a.m. Saturday, April 26. The market will run every Wednesday and Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon until mid-December at the parking lot of HART…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:08

Rain barrels available in Haywood County

Rain barrels made from recycled food-grade containers are available for purchase at the Haywood County Chamber of Commerce and the Haywood County Cooperative Extension Office. They can also be ordered through the Haywood Waterways Association.  The barrels have bug screen…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:07

A boon for bears

Bear management will get a boost in the Smokies with $4,000 in Appalachian Trail license plate sales to go toward repairing damaged cables in the cable-and-pulley systems installed at each backcountry campsite and shelter in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Volunteers are needed to help Haywood Waterways root the invasive plants out of Richland Creek’s banks at Vance Street Park in Waynesville. From 2 to 5 p.m. April 29, the group will remove Japanese knotweed, multiflora rose, oriental bittersweet, Chinese…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:05

Skatepark closed for repairs

The Waynesville Skate Park will be closed from April 28 to May 2 for repairs. The park will reopen May 3.
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:03

Smokies celebrate Junior Ranger Day

National Junior Ranger Day will spur festivities in Great Smoky Mountains National Park from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., April 26 at Oconaluftee, Sugarlands and Cades Cove visitor centers.
The woods are quiet on a cool Saturday morning in late March. There’s no wind swaying the still-bare trees or the rhododendrons clustered along streambeds. In this, one of the most remote trails of the Shining Rock Wilderness of Pisgah…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:55

Curmudgeon offers words of wisdom

May is fast approaching, and with May comes the season of graduations. Daughters and sons, nephews and nieces, young people we’ve cherished for one reason or another: they’re about to embark on the next journey in their life, and we…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:48

Pigs in a Poke

To the editor: The election season is here. Several candidates are promising to cut government costs or taxes, but they won’t say what services will be cut. These people either don’t know enough about the job they’re trying to get,…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:47

Make your vote count this election

To the editor: Children are our future and as a former educator, I’ve been concerned about the cutbacks in spending for our schools. Teachers need to make a living wage and class size needs to be reduced so students can…
By Doug Wingeier • Columnist Good news! General Mills has recently announced that — in response to consumer pressure — it has removed GMOs (Genetically Modified Organisms) from its original Cheerios cereal. And Post has done the same with Grape Nuts.…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:45

ABC merger agreed to by town and county

Jackson County and the town of Sylva agreed this month to merge the entities’ separate Alcoholic Beverage Control boards. The deal means that Jackson and Sylva will share in the overall profits generated throughout the county, including those generated at…
Nine months ago, a federal sex abuse case against Harland Squirrel, of Cherokee, ended in dismissal after the jury failed to reach a verdict. But the case hasn’t gone away. In May, Squirrel will face the charges again in tribal…
The bridge carrying eastbound Main Street traffic across the Little Tennessee River in Franklin will be close to 90 years old by the time its newly planned replacement is up and running at the end of 2017. The N.C. Department…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:41

Jackson justice center squeezed for space

The verdict is in, and Jackson County Justice Center is a little too small. To be exact, it’s 35,807 square feet too small.  At least according to the results of a needs assessment by Heery International, the same company that…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:36

The same, the change and ‘the machine’

Swain County’s clerk of court race is an early-season affair. With no challengers looming on November’s general election horizon, the contest will be decided in next month’s primary.  The Swain clerk’s contest is also a race that offers voters a…
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 13:36

Wearing it on their sleeves

When cyclists roll through Jackson County during the Tour de Cashiers May 3, some of them will be sporting new jerseys.  “This is the official bike jersey,” said Stephanie Edwards, executive director of the Cashiers Chamber of Commerce, Edwards showed…
The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority may be ready to start thinking about hiring an executive director. Board members of the still-new tourism organization are currently forming an exploratory committee to ponder the possibilities.