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Wednesday, 08 July 2009 18:19

Take a chance on Ravens

When a friend sent me an advanced reading copy of Ravens with a note that said, “There is no one to like in this one,” I prepared myself for a dark and bleak journey through South Georgia grunge. That is…
Wednesday, 08 July 2009 18:18

441 corridor plan poised for passage

The Jackson County Board of Commissioners held a final public hearing on the proposed U.S. 441 “Gateway” Corridor ordinance Monday (July 6). Michael Egan, the county’s consulting attorney on land development matters, gave an overview of the ordinance before comments…
Wednesday, 08 July 2009 18:17

Fish stew: better than it sounds

While today’s fishermen are partial to the big fillets like brook trout and small-mouth bass, Cherokee used even the tiniest fish, like silversides and shiners, drying them on long strings or making them into stews. Myrtle Driver, a Cherokee elder,…
Wednesday, 08 July 2009 18:05

Long-time Sylva mayor won’t run again

Sylva’s mayor for the past 17 years, Brenda Oliver, has announced that she will not run for re-election this fall.Oliver, 67, said she has enjoyed serving the town and is optimistic about the direction it is headed. Oliver said she…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 18:04

New map leads the way to Haywood farms

Local residents and tourists have a new resource to help them support the farms and farmers of Haywood County. A recently unveiled brochure and map lists more than 30 locations to buy local produce, plants, trout, and more. The featured…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 18:03

Canton election hangs on vision for town

How Canton residents envision the future of their town could play a pivotal role in who gets elected this fall. The current town board has been locked in a power struggle recently, with two long-time board members often at odds…
There is only so much you can do to help a child recover from a broken heart, especially the first time it is broken. You can say, “Honey, I know it seems like you’ll never get over it, but someday…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:59

New bike shop opens in Bryson

Andy Zivinsky and Diane Cutler were determined to move to the mountains. Their passion for all things outdoors was making the Raleigh area increasingly ill-suited to the type of lifestyle they wanted. “We were only taking an outdoor trip once…
Two-term Franklin Alderman Bob Scott has wanted a turn as vice mayor going back a while — an honor that traditionally rotates among aldermen. But a couple of years ago, Mayor Joe Collins reportedly told him, Bob, “ain’t gonna happen.”…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:56

PETA targets bear zoos in national campaign

Recently, the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians found itself the whipping boy of an unlikely opponent. Much to the tribe’s surprise, the national organization People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals last month released a statement calling for an end…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:55

Stimulus funds boost WNC mass transit

Mass transit is set to get a boost in Western North Carolina thanks to some economic stimulus money targeted for park and ride and carpooling lots. The Region 14 DOT office in Sylva was recently awarded $460,000 for several projects.…
In the game of musical chairs stemming from the library moving out of its current digs on Sylva’s Main Street, “rear ends” may be landing in unexpected places. The Sylva Police Department was at least temporarily rebuffed — not “rebutted,”…
By Michael Beadle On a quiet perch atop Bethel Cemetery, two unmarked graves are all that’s left of a pair of Confederate soldiers who left Haywood County to fight a war far, far away, only to return and be shot…
The Cherokee School Board is on the verge of appointing a new superintendent following the termination of Rosemary Townsend after three years on the job. Board Chairman Anthony Sequoyah said Townsend was an at-will employee and that the board chose…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:37

How Bob Barker took on the Eastern Band

Bob Barker?! The involvement of famed television host Bob Barker in the fight to end the Cherokee bear exhibits took many by surprise. During a phone interview with The Smoky Mountain News, Barker explained that he first became aware of…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:36

A nose for finding rare plants

I enjoy leading natural history workshops, but I no longer derive much pleasure from herding people along a trail while naming things right and left. What continues to motivate me is helping participants learn to use specific source and identification…
The Nantahala Gorge Canopy Tour will debut this month with a half-mile series of forest-enveloped ziplines, where people hang from a harness and slide along an overhead cable strung between platforms and trees. The course zigzags over 20 acres and…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:33

Jackson farm and garden tour has it all

Farmers and gardeners in Jackson County are inviting the public to traipse through their garden rows during the third annual Jackson County Farm Tour and Garden Walk July 11 and 12. Tour-goers get a brochure of the 16 participating farms…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:32

The Naturalist's Corner

New neighbors I have always had a good number of neotropical migrants nest every season in the woods around my home. The mornings and evenings are filled with the flute-like melodies of wood thrushes, various selections from the wide-ranging repertoire…
A public hearing over a sewer discharge permit into the Little Tennessee River will be held on Tuesday, July 7, in Rabun County, Ga. Rabun County plans to convert a former industrial wastewater treatment plant at a closed-down textile mill…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:30

Freaks and morality

Flannery: A Life of Flannery O’Connor by Brad Gooch. Little, Brown and Company, 2009. 464 pages. “Whenever I am asked why Southern writers particularly have this penchant for writing about freaks, I say it is because we are still able…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:29

Will Sylva vote expose usual fault line?

The race for the Sylva town board this fall could once again gauge the extent of shifting demographics of the town. Two seats on the board are up for election. Town Commissioner Stacey Knotts confirmed she will run again while…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:28

Who’s running and who’s not?

Canton Mayor Pat Smathers could face opposition this fall from his leading opponent on the town board, Alderman Eric Dills. Dills said this week he is considering a run for mayor against Smathers, although he has not made up his…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:26

Tourism office takes tech strides

In her nearly six-month tenure as executive director, Lynn Collins has been helping Haywood County’s Tourism Development Authority make strides — especially in using technology to be more effective for tourism operators and visitors. As a prominent example, the tourism…
Wednesday, 01 July 2009 17:25

Tindall-Taylor leaving HRMC

The director of Haywood Regional Medical Center’s Foundation and Corporate Communications Department for the past 20 years, Robin Tindall-Taylor, has resigned her position at HRMC to take the position of the new executive director of the Highlands-Cashiers Hospital Foundation. “Over…
The plaza at the entrance to the new Waynesville Police Station is nearing completion. Workers are placing the final touches to the brick paver design that captures the heritage of the town of Waynesville. Courtney Boessel, a rising senior at…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:35

Recipes, 6/24/10

Rainbow trout with lemon caper sauce: Grill filleted trout over medium-hot coals. Baste with butter and fresh herbs (parsley, chives, dill). Grilled trout does not need much to accompany it, but a lemon caper sauce is nice if you like…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:33

Mountains of mushrooms

Is this going to be a bumper year for wild mushrooms? Maybe so, if the rainfall we have been experiencing in recent weeks continues to any significant extent into late summer and fall. My wife, Elizabeth, and our youngest daughter,…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:13

Ode to the Sylva Coffee Shop

Most small southern towns have a place like The Coffee Shop in Sylva — a cafe that has become a local landmark. I hopped curb here in 1950 when it had a wooden frame exterior and the jukebox had both…
The town of Franklin acted appropriately by making public the terms of an out-of-court settlement offer extended to the town by Duke Energy. The offer was aimed at getting the town of Franklin and Jackson County to drop their opposition…
Downtown merchants in Waynesville hope to get a boost in customers when the Haywood County Historic Courthouse throws open its doors to the public Monday, June 29, following a two-year renovation. Main Street shops lost frequent customers when courthouse construction…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:04

The Naturalist's Corner

WNS impacts western Carolina caving The USDA Forest Service issued an order on May 21 closing all caves and abandoned mines on FS property — unless specifically posted as open — in its Southeastern Region 8. The states affected include…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:02

Lawmakers veer way off path

By Bob Scott • Guest Columnist North Carolina Legislators have declared war on tube roses. Tube roses are little roses and pens in glass tubes. Also on the legislator’s list of evil products are cigar splitters. Splitters are plastic tubes…
The mountains of Western North Carolina were no stranger to tourism prior to the creation of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, which today rakes in 9 million visitors and is by far the most visited national park in the…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 16:00

Humanizing literature

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows. Dial Press. 277 pages For readers who love epistolary novels, T.G.L.A.P.P.P.S. will prove to be a delight. In addition to containing bright and witty letters…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:59

No we aren’t becoming socialists

Don’t you just love how words and labels take on a life of their own in the ideological debate that helps shape public policy. The give-and-take of real debate is important — as it helps us find a middle ground…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:58

Waynesville seeks input on pedestrian plan

A master plan for making Waynesville even more pedestrian friendly has been unveiled after a year in the making. The long-range plan lays out priorities for new sidewalks over the next 15 years. “The basic rationale was to fill in…
After two-and-a-half years of operating in temporary quarters, the big move is here. Stacks of boxes are piled high in the hallways and offices of Haywood County workers, awaiting transfer to their new home. This weekend, they’ll be moved in…
Cherokee isn’t the only one that potentially stands to make money off the sale of alcohol to patrons at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino. Swain or Jackson counties could see a mini-windfall of their own if Harrah’s purchases vast quantities of liquor…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:55

In search of hidden lookout towers

The line-up of hikes in the Lookout Tower Challenge spans Western North Carolina. Seven are located in the Nantahala National Forest, including Wayah Bald and Albert Mountain along the Appalachian Trail. Five more towers can be found in the Great…
As Jackson County leaders continue their fight against Duke Energy, an unassuming local lawyer that few have heard of has appeared as the county’s heavy-hitter against the politically powerful and uber-wealthy Fortune 500 utility. Attorney Gary Miller, 52, a former…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:52

An unfortunate object of affection

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park has long been synonymous with black bears. From the first automobile tourists to today’s long-distance backpackers, catching a glimpse of the the iconic animal is the ultimate Smokies’ experience. Of course, it was much…
By Peter Barr • Guest writer The Carolina Mountain Club is challenging hikers to seek out some of Western North Carolina’s most spectacular panoramas. The group’s new Lookout Tower Challenge rewards outdoor enthusiasts for completing hikes to 24 of the…
Swain County will continue contracting with the Bryson City Fire Department to provide county fire service, despite threatening to cut ties with the department after it asked the county for more money. Earlier this year, the county balked at a…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:49

Sunburst: Fantasy and Reality

By Karen Dill Sunburst. The word evokes a magical image. Yet, in my childhood community of Bethel, Sunburst was simply a place visited on lazy Sunday afternoons in June. It was a mere section of land beyond Lake Logan, but…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:46

Buy local

Haywood Sunburst Trout FarmMakes: Smoked Tomato Jam, trout dip, trout cakes, trout jerky, trout sausage, trout caviar, marinated trout.Find it at: The Nest on Main Street, Waynesville (Smoked Tomato Jam); Ingles (trout dip); or order online at www.sunbursttrout.com.Bethel Eden FarmMakes:…
Across Western North Carolina, an increasing number of people are discovering new and creative ways to use the bounty of produce and farm goods raised in the mountains. From jams to sauces to salves, homegrown chefs and artisans are turning…
Wednesday, 24 June 2009 15:43

Tour retraces Haywood County history

By Ellen Cirino • Special To The Smoky Mountain News The fifth Cold Mountain Heritage Tour, a self-driving tour to historic sites in and around the Haywood County community of Bethel that aren’t open for public access, will be held…
Come the start of fall semester, some Western Carolina University freshmen could find themselves residing in unusual living quarters. A delay in the construction of a new residence hall is forcing WCU staff to scramble for places to put incoming…
Wednesday, 17 June 2009 20:14

Maggie festival embraces all things trout

Maggie Valley will celebrate the trout heritage of the Smoky Mountain region with its annual Trout Festival, held from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, June 20, at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds. One of the integral aspects of…