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Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:59

Dressing right for winter weather

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By Doug Scarborough • Contributing writer With the winter season here, dressing appropriately to prevent cold injuries is often overlooked.…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:58

Voters to decide on alcohol sales at Harrah’s

Voters in Cherokee will decide whether alcohol should be sold at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino now that enough signatures have been gathered to put the measure on the ballot. The Cherokee Board of Elections has certified 1,536 signatures. Only 1,534 signatures,…
Haywood Regional Medical Center will terminate its contract with the corporate physician staffing outfit that supplies doctors for the hospital’s emergency department, according to hospital CEO Mike Poore. “What we are trying to do is improve our overall emergency department,”…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:56

A stellar year for Cataloochee’s elk

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When the first batch of 25 elk were released in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park seven years ago, it…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:55

Land use plan review ‘back on track’

Waynesville leaders vowed to speed up a review of the town’s land use plan after an article in The Smoky Mountain News two weeks ago revealed the process is months behind schedule. The town board directed Town Planner Paul Benson…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:53

That’s me on the couch, counting my blessings

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The holidays are upon us, I’m walking almost normal, and I’m ready to sit on the couch and count my…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:52

Chili’s scouts Waynesville as possible location

Even as one national retailer — Home Depot — is pulling its plans for a Waynesville store, the national restaurant chain Chili’s Grill and Bar is setting its sights on the small mountain town. The West Waynesville commercial area near…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:50

Sustainable travel makes sense

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By Cynthia Deale • Western Regional Representative, Center for Sustainable Tourism Editor’s note: This series of green living tips is…
Two recently created tourism boards in Macon County met last week to begin discussing how they can make the area more of a tourist destination. The groups, the Tourism Development Authority and the Tourism Development Commission, represent the town of…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:48

DOT meeting should have been advertised

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By James McCarthy • Guest Columnist Did the N.C. Department of Transportation hold an illegal meeting on Dec. 4 at…
By Christi Marsico • Staff Writer North Carolina’s poet laureate Kathryn Stripling Byer listens to the CD “Alma,” composed by…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:45

Swanger back in the game with EDC seat

Haywood County Commissioner Mark Swanger is back on the county’s Economic Development Commission five years after he played a critical role in overhauling the organization and redirecting the county’s strategy for economic development. Swanger recently regained his seat as a…
Charles Phillips of Waynesville may be monetarily poor, but he is rich in the Christmas spirit. Each Christmas Phillips covers his small house on Frazier Street with colorful lights and adorns his yard with Christmas trees, Santa Claus statues and…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:43

Was the night really that silent?

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According to old Appalachian tradition, you don’t have to be named Doolittle to hear the animals. You just have to…
Lynn Collins, the director of Maggie Valley Chamber of Commerce, was unanimously appointed as the new director of the Haywood County Tourism Development Authority this week following a muddled process involving three separate votes. The process and the outcome seemed…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:40

Heritage center welcomes new curator

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Trevor Jones, a native of St. Cloud, Minn., is the new curator at the Mountain Heritage Center, Western Carolina University’s…
Wednesday, 24 December 2008 15:39

Music for the land

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Dirt Music by Tim Winton. Scribner and Sons, 2003. 411 pages. Well, dear reader, we are about to discuss a…
When Haywood Regional Medical Center suspended its care of Medicare and Medicaid patients last February, Jim Pressley realized there was no time to waste. The announcement, kept secret by the hospital CEO until the last minute, was effective immediately. The…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:26

Historic harmony: “Songs From Haywood County”

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By Christi Marsico • Staff Writer Providing a historic glimpse into triumph and tragedy of real life in Haywood County over…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:24

College students squeeze value out of trash

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It took a team of Western Carolina University students just 10 days and dozens of discarded plastic bottles to design…
The North Carolina Court of Appeals has dismissed a lawsuit filed against a domestic violence shelter by the family of a woman who was murdered by her deranged husband at the facility. Woody Woodring broke into the REACH shelter in…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:23

Public land stewardship as economic stimulus

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Editor’s Note: The following is testimony delivered by Mark Singleton of Sylva, who is the chairman of the Outdoor Alliance.…
Editor’s note: The following is series of student-written excerpts from a five-day camping trip taken to the Hazel Creek area…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:21

Franklin development pushes village-style design

The days of suburban sprawl could be coming to an end as a new type of development — mixed use — is ushered in. With carbon footprints and gas prices on the minds of so many these days, mixed-use development…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:20

The Naturalist's Corner

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Gun-toting tourist deters smarter than average bear Setting: A campground in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, nightfall, Jan. 13,…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:19

Waynesville needs to get going on land use plan update

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It’s time for Waynesville to get going on its land use plan review, especially since the economic downturn has slowed…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:19

School air data suspect, officials say

Officials from Haywood County and the state Division of Air Quality are disputing a recently released report by USA Today that lists two schools in the paper mill town of Canton as among those with the worst air quality in…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:18

WestCare, Haywood hospitals hunt for partner

The boards of Haywood Regional Medical Center and WestCare Health System are officially seeking proposals from three hospital systems that will likely result in an affiliation with one of them. The document lays out the primary advantages of HRMC’s and…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:17

Verizon cell tower violates county ordinance

A cell tower company jumped the gun by building onto its tower without the necessary permits from Haywood County. Verizon Wireless added 20 feet to the height of its tower off Mauney Cove without applying for a permit. When it…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:16

Russell’s ‘dog of a book’

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Dreamers of the Day by Mary Doria Russell. Random House, 2008. 272 pages. One of the great delights in browsing…
U.S. Rep. Heath Shuler, D-Waynesville, voted against the proposed bailout of the auto industry last week. Gary Tallent, manager of a Chrysler/Jeep/Dodge dealership in Franklin, said he is disappointed in Shuler’s decision. “I don’t know if he understands what it…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:14

Home Depot scraps Waynesville plans

Home Depot has officially yanked plans to build a store in Waynesville next to the town’s new Super Wal-Mart. The decision comes after months of continual delays on the project. The home improvement chain had pushed the opening date back…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:12

HCC serves up student-grown produce

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This spring, the greens served in Haywood Community College’s cafeteria couldn’t have been more local — they were grown just…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:11

There ain’t no shelter here

There aren’t many options for those without a home in Western North Carolina. Sleeping outside is one, but winter nights can get dangerously frigid. Non-profit agencies can sometimes pay for a hotel room, but only for a couple nights at…
Although Jackson County and the Airport Authority prevailed in a lawsuit this month blaming them for slope failure at the airport, they can’t rest easy yet. Work on projects to make the airport more geologically stable is set to begin…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:09

Ye Olde Christmas CD roundup ...

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By Chris Cooper I guess it’s a kind of Christmas tradition. Every year around this time I go on the…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:08

No guns, no bikes, and no dogs

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By Danny Bernstein • Guest Columnist Our national parks have been assaulted by new rulings in the closing days of…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:07

Macon may be out of money for K-4 school

There may not be enough money to build a new K-4 school in Macon County because of the economic downturn, two county commissioners told school board members on Monday (Dec. 15). Commissioners Ronnie Beale and Jim Davis agreed the new…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:06

Taking a likin’ to the lichen

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On a winter walk you will encounter numerous evergreen plants. None is more mysterious or delightful to behold than the…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:05

Lending a hand

Recently, more than 50 members of the Haywood County community gathered in a church fellowship hall to brainstorm ways to help with the rising level of need. In the middle of the meeting, a woman and her son entered the…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:04

A word with the musicians

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Mark W. Winchester (MW) and Milan Miller (MM) answer questions about the collaboration of “Songs From Haywood County.” SMN: How…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:03

Cherokee petition closes in on alcohol vote

Organizers of a petition drive in Cherokee believe they have enough signatures to force a referendum by voters on whether alcohol sales should be allowed at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino. Don Rose, a volunteer with the committee that circulated the petition,…
Wednesday, 17 December 2008 15:03

The economic downturn hits home — hard

The trickle down effect from the national economic downturn is starting to feel more like a flood to agencies in Western North Carolina, which report being inundated with people hurting from layoffs and foreclosures. “We’re absolutely slammed — it’s more…
It appears local government officials obeyed the Open Meetings Law when they attended a private N.C. Department of Transportation meeting about the controversial N.C. 107 connector last week. The Smoky Mountain News reported in the Nov. 26 edition that the…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:40

About Nance Dude

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A brief synopsis of “Nance Dude,” which is one of three dramatic monologues in “Land’s End” written by Gary Carden:…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:39

National parks to lift ban on gun-packing visitors

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Visitors could soon be toting loaded, concealed guns in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. A long-standing ban on loaded…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:39

Schools give money back, Big Three ready to take it

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As the economic picture gets more and more bleak, the ironies loom larger and larger. Public school systems, community colleges…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:38

DOT gets earful from public on Southern Loop

Jackson County resident Susan Leveille opposes the construction of a N.C. 107 bypass. “I am very hopeful DOT and all other powers who make decisions will take a look at the alternatives to a bypass for alleviating traffic concerns,” Leveille…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:37

Smokies plate helps Friends help the park

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The new specialty license plate for Friends of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, sporting a black bear against a mountain…
Wednesday, 10 December 2008 14:36

Traffic simulations for 2035 takes leap of faith

As the debate over the Southern Loop rages on, a faceless cadre of number crunchers have been assigned a seemingly impossible task: predict who will be driving on N.C. 107 and why 25 years from now. The answer could ultimately…