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To celebrate Native American Heritage Month, there will be two special events Nov. 8-9 at The Museum of the Cherokee Indian. 
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 00:00

This must be the place

Dave Mason has seen it all. As co-founder/guitarist for Rock and Roll Hall of Fame group Traffic, Mason, alongside band mate Steve Winwood, found himself at the forefront of the music industry in the 1960s. With iconic hits like “Dear…
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 00:00

‘42nd Street’ to hit WCU stage

The musical production of “42nd Street” will be held at 7:30 p.m. Nov. 13-15 and at 3 p.m. Nov. 16 in the Bardo Arts Center at Western Carolina University.
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 00:00

In search of the perfect word

The beauty of literature is its solely unique power of transportation. That beauty lies in the meticulous arrangement of words, phrases and sentences on a simple black and white page, where upon decoding the message you conjure endless colors, scents and…
Friday, 31 October 2014 19:44

Davis vs. Hipps debate video

On Oct. 30, Sen. Jim Davis and challenger Jane Hipps squared off in a debate at Southwestern Community College. It was the Senate 50 candidates’ third and final debate prior to the Nov. election. 
Friday, 31 October 2014 19:43

Winter weather causes Parkway closures

The first winter weather closures of the season will be in effect on the Blue Ridge Parkway this weekend. 
Wednesday, 05 November 2014 00:00

YMCA camp coming to Swain County

Swain County will soon be home to a YMCA camp.  The camp — called YMCA Camp Watia — will be on land located near the Almond Boat and RV Park. “Probably 5 miles from the highway,” said Swain County Manager…
A small section of the Blue Ridge Parkway,  between Milepost 420 (near Black Balsam Road) and Milepost 423 (at Hwy. 215), will be closed from Nov. 3 through May 2015. 
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 16:10

Celebrating the ever-popular essay

This week it’s time to break out the champagne, pop that cork, and raise a flute of bubbly to the essay. Once the property of magazines and newspapers, the essay is now the vehicle of choice for thousands of online…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:52

Culinary weekend returns to Highlands

The 8th annual Highlands Culinary Weekend will be Nov. 6-9 at participating restaurants and businesses. The four-day destination event, created by the Highlands Chamber of Commerce & Visitor Center, is one of the highlights of the fall season, which combines…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:50

Daughtry to rock Harrah’s

Acclaimed rock act Daughtry will perform at 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 8, at Harrah’s Cherokee.
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:46

WNC Halloween: where to go, what to do

Bethel • The Cold Mountain Corn Maze. Open 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesday through Friday and 1 to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. $8 for ages 4 and older, ages 3 and younger free.
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:46

Davis to spin yarns at HART

Renowned storyteller Donald Davis will be performing “Our Stories Take Us Home” at 3 p.m. Sunday, Nov. 9, at the Haywood Arts Regional Theatre in Waynesville.
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:45

Opera, ballet on the Highlands big screen

The Live in HD Series will continue with “Carmen and The Legend of Love” at the ML Performing Arts Center in Highlands.
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:44

Professor, actor to receive state award

The North Carolina Literary and Historical Association will present Broadway star Terrence Mann, Western Carolina University’s Phillips Distinguished Professor of Musical Theatre, with the Hardee-Rives Award for the Dramatic Arts on Friday, Nov. 7. The annual award honors notable contributions…
The Beautiful Offerings Tour featuring Big Daddy Weave, with special guests Chris August, Dara Maclean and Group 1 Crew will perform an evening of contemporary Christian music at 7 p.m. Friday, Oct. 31, at the Smoky Mountain Center for the…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:40

This must be the place

It never ceases to amaze me the incredible people, places and things I cross paths with here in Western North Carolina. From craft artisans to world-class musicians, stealthy moonshiners to stoic veterans, backwoods folks and cosmopolitan socialites — they’re all…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:38

Reach for the Skyway

They say the easiest way to hide something is to place it right in front of someone. Well, what would you say if I told you one of the most beautiful roads in America is right in your backyard, and…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:34

You have permission to vote Democrat

To the Editor: Recently I have heard folks say things like, “My daddy” or “Momma” would “roll over in their grave if I don’t vote for all the Republicans like we always have, but I’m sure not happy with some…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:34

Best choice for school board is Goode

To the Editor: Don’t we all desire what’s best for our kids? The best schools. The best teachers. The best extracurricular options. The best friends. But how often do we consider an even broader picture — like the best school…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:33

Thanks for coverage of candidates

To the Editor: I would like to applaud The Smoky Mountain News for the articles on the Haywood County Commission candidates. It was fair and impartial and all six candidates had a chance to qualify their answers. Naturally, those who…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:32

We should fear the puppet politicians

To the Editor: In the campaign financial reports from 2012, Rep. Michelle Presnell, R-Yancey, spent $107,039 with $3,611 from individuals and Sen. Jim Davis, R-Franklin, spent $920,258 with $62,666 from individuals. (Contrast Joe Sam Queen spending $128,871 with $88,632 from…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:31

Goode is fresh choice for school board

To the Editor: Eleven years ago, I came home from work to find my wife — Wende Goode — holding our newborn son Tristin on our sofa. Tears poured from her eyes as she explained she could not go back…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:31

Keep all school staff in mind when voting

To the Editor: Most of the talk regarding education has been about teacher pay, which is critical such that we can continue to recruit and maintain highly qualified teachers. Certainly, North Carolina teachers deserve better pay; it is also important…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:31

Tillis clear over incumbent Sen. Hagan

To the Editor: The Senate race in North Carolina is the most important election in our state this year. Sen. Kay Hagan, D-N.C., has been and will continue to be a rubber stamp senator for President Obama and Sen. Harry…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:30

Choose science over a salesman’s snake oil

To the Editor: I’m really impressed with Tom Hill, candidate for District 11 of the U.S. Congress, hoping to unseat the incumbent, Rep. Mark Meadows, R-Cashiers. I have seen both of these candidates speak. Rep. Meadows is a slick public speaker…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:30

This is what GOP legislature did for us

To the Editor: Are you better off now than you were, say, a year ago? For most of us that depends on whether the bank account is larger and we have more money in our wallets. In North Carolina, that…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:29

Hunter Murphy best option for Appeals Court

To the Editor: I would like to take this opportunity to recommend Mr. Hunter Murphy for election to the North Carolina Court of Appeals. I have known Mr. Murphy and his family since they moved to Waynesville in 1995. I…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:29

A letter to Gov. McCrory and the Legislature

To the Editor: The actions taken in the last few years under Republican leadership have awakened a sleeping giant of economic development. Not only have you opened the door for industry and jobs to discover North Carolina, but you have…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:28

Vote for Hill, send Meadows home

To the Editor: I truly believe Tom Hill will stand up for us, the common person. If you haven’t seen many television ads for him, or seen too many signs, it is because he has not accepted money from corporations or…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:26

Time for new county commissioners

To the Editor:  What have the incumbent county commissioners brought to Haywood County? I am a 55-year resident of Haywood County. The current Haywood County Board of Commissioners has given us a massive debt of well over $69 million, with…
My weekdays begin at 5 a.m. I have time to drink coffee with my husband, thank him for making my lunch, make myself presentable and read, pray, and meditate. I also clean out the cat’s litter box, which is perhaps…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 15:23

‘Remember, the flying itself is the thing’

It is a fine day for a cookout, this Father’s Day. It is hot enough that most of the younger folk are wearing shorts and T-shirts, revealing traces of recent sunburn and the random bruises and scratches of youth. This…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:52

Monarchs to Mexico

Monarch butterflies, like orange autumn leaves filling the skies, have been winging it to Mexico for the last month or so. Peak migration for the mountains of Western North Carolina is from mid- to late September through early to mid-October. 
Duke Energy Progress customers may see some changes in their communities as the utility embarks on a new initiative to modernize outdoor lighting across its service area. Duke will replace more than 100,000 mercury vapor street and area lights with…
A partnership between the Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project and the Rural Advancement Foundation International is aimed at increasing farmer direct sales and expanding access to local foods.  The project, called Connect2Direct, aims to increase farm-to-consumer direct sales and food stamp…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:47

WCU gets $436K to protect coastal parks

 The National Park Service has awarded a $436,000 grant to the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines at Western Carolina University to help produce strategies for the future preservation of infrastructure and resources at all U.S. coastal parks threatened…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:44

Trout Unlimited looking for photogenic fish

Trout Unlimited is looking for fishy photos to contend for gear prizes in its 2014 photo contest.  The contest is open through Oct. 31 and will award prizes to first- through third-place category winners as well as one grand prize…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:40

Arboretum plans geocaching adventure

Geocaching will be the main topic on the agenda Saturday, Nov. 1, at the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville. This high-tech treasure hunt involves downloading GPS coordinates for hidden loot and then adventuring around to find it. 
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:39

Park offers reward for information on theft

Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials are offering a reward for information after artifacts were stolen from a locked display case in the Palmer House, located in the Cataloochee Valley area.
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:37

Learn how to keep gardening as temps dip

A workshop on winter gardening and spring garden prep to teach gardeners how to avoid putting growing season to bed in the winter months will be held from 12:30-2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1, at the Cullowhee Community Garden.
At 7:30 a.m., darkness is just barely beginning to lift from the pre-dawn fields and forest of Cataloochee Valley. Joe Yarkovich steers his National Park Service vehicle through the valley and past a herd of elk bedded down in a…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:31

Economic development summit set for Nov. 12

Leaders from government, business and nonprofits across Western North Carolina will gather with economic development experts and others to discuss solutions leading to sustainable economic and community development at LEAD:WNC, a one-day summit set for Wednesday, Nov. 12,  at Western…
Wednesday, 29 October 2014 14:29

Ebola panel discussion offered at WCU

A panel discussion and question-and-answer session on the Ebola crises and the risk it poses will take place 4-5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 4, at the Forsyth Building at Western Carolina University.  Four WCU faculty members, including an environmental health professor…
It’s been two years since Alen Baker, the self-described “instigator” of the effort to create the Fly Fishing Museum of the Southern Appalachians, sent an unsolicited pitch to the Cherokee Chamber of Commerce. But now, the building is renovated and…
The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority is pursuing a leader, someone to act as the organization’s executive director. The workload is becoming more than volunteer board members can handle. “Some of us feel, and I feel, it’s going to be…
With park funding falling and visitation increasing, keeping those iconic views open along the 46 miles of Blue Ridge Parkway in Haywood County — without breaking the bank — is a challenge. Fast-growing trees and shrubs grow up around the…
With its landfill nearing capacity, Macon County is taking steps to add a new cell before the existing area fills up about two years from now. They’ve had another phase permitted for about 20 years, but rather than just install…
Inside and out, the Swain County Heritage Museum is an ode to history. The very building that houses the museum long served as the courthouse in Bryson City, and now serves to usher visitors through all those many years gone…
The Village of Forest Hills is about to go on a vision quest. The quest begins Nov. 3 with a community workshop.  The village will be the latest community to ponder a vision, a long-range view. It follows in the…