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Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:47

Regrets: books I now know I shall never read

For many of us, the bells ringing in the New Year carry a bittersweet tune. We look forward to better times, which means we’ve gone through some hard times. We make resolutions, which means we have found faults in ourselves.…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:32

Societal comedy to hit HART stage

The societal comedy “Elemeno Pea” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Jan. 16-17 and at 3 p.m. Jan. 18 at the Haywood Arts Regional Theatre in Waynesville.
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:30

MacLean to speak on architectural photography

John MacLean will be the guest speaker during the Sylva Photo Club’s meeting at 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 10, at the Cullowee Methodist Church on the Western Carolina University campus.
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:27

Haywood libraries welcome piano, jazz

Pianist Richard Shulman and jazz band One Leg Up will perform in the Haywood public libraries.
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:25

This must be the place

364 days down, one to go. Hurtling down Interstate 95 from Boston to New York City, I’m sitting on a charter bus with my eyes aimed once again at New Year’s Eve in The Big Apple. It’s become a tradition…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:21

One Way Out — Gregg Allman

It’s the soundtrack of America. Forty-five years ago, The Allman Brothers Band burst onto the scene. With an intoxicating blend of squealing LA rock-n-roll, poignant Greenwich Village folk and bayou voodoo blues, the Macon, Georgia band plugged in and kicked off…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:19

We have to close the widening gap

To the Editor: About 10 years ago I said to a client of mine perhaps the most outrageous thing I’ve ever said: “The worst thing that ever happened to America was the loss of the Soviet Union.” For a moment,…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:18

New animal shelter is long overdue

To the Editor: I was happy to read the article about the need for a new animal shelter in Haywood County. There is no doubt that the current one has long served its purpose. I really believe that many people…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:17

Some successional habitat a good thing

To the Editor: The recent announcement by the U.S. Forest Service of more potential logging in the new forest management proposals led some environmental groups to hype it as if every tree in the forest were going to be cut…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:15

Time to break the holiday laws of inertia

Two miserable characters — the larger one in a terry cloth bathrobe and fleece pajama bottoms, the smaller one in his new school clothes and orange parka — stand at the bus stop, huddled together in a sad and pathetically…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 16:03

Park changes firewood rules to protect forests

Great Smoky Mountains National Park will limit the type of firewood brought into the park in order to protect forests.  Beginning in March 2015, only heat-treated firewood that is bundled and displays a certification stamp by the USDA or a…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 15:59

A possumless possum drop

Just like they have for the last two decades, residents of Clay County and beyond gathered in Brasstown to ring in the New Year with the annual Possum Drop. But unlike the last two decades, they had to do so…
More than $6 million has been spent on upgrades and improvements at Haywood Regional Medical Center since it was bought by Duke LifePoint hospital network last year. Pumping cash into the facility and equipment was a condition of the deal,…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 15:57

Haywood Regional’s new CEO now on the job

The new CEO of Haywood Regional Medical Center assumed his role this week, pledging to lead the hospital into a new era under the ownership of Duke LifePoint. The sale to Duke LifePoint last year ended Haywood Regional’s proud history…
Dinnertime came a little late at Haywood Pathways Center Sunday night (Jan. 4), but for all the right reasons. It was the inaugural night for The Open Door’s Hazelwood kitchen, the final piece in turning the dream behind the Pathways…
Each year an economic report card issued by the North Carolina Department of Commerce determines which counties will be given first dibs on state grant money — and each year no one seems satisfied with their grades. Haywood’s status improved, for…
Fred Baker’s title isn’t particularly glamorous. For nearly three decades, he kept the potholes patched, the trash picked up, the sewer lines repaired, the clean water flowing, the lights on and the gutters swept all over Waynesville. “It is a…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 15:41

Insurance agents adjust to industry under ACA

Since the rollout of the Affordable Care Act, people have been urged to get signed up for health insurance online with the help of certified navigators. Local insurance agents, however, say they are still more qualified to make sure residents…
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 15:35

Study shows Swain benefited most from ACA

More than 10 million people now have health care coverage because of the Affordable Care Act, and Swain County residents benefited from the new law more than any other county in North Carolina.  According to data released by Enroll America,…
Jackson County got plenty of response back when its new board of commissioners put out the word that they were taking applications for the county attorney position. 
Wednesday, 07 January 2015 15:31

Jackson, Macon work together on transportation

Public transit in Macon County is slated to get a boost as Jackson and Macon counties work out an agreement to share a position between the two of them. Jackson’s mobility coordinator position — a job that basically entails marketing…
A final public hearing to solicit public input on a draft set of standards to guide development in Cullowhee will take place on Jan. 13 After that, the draft standards will go to the planning board and then to the…
Now is the time to make resolutions, order seeds for the coming year’s garden and buy an almanac for 2015. Just doing those things will make you feel better. My almanac of choice this year is titled “Harris’ Farmer’s Almanac…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 16:19

Forest Stewards honored for conservation forestry

A Cullowhee-based forest management group was recently recognized for its work by Root Cause, a regional initiative to raise awareness of sustainable forestry industries.
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 16:15

Haywood Waterways does good work

Editor’s note: The following is a submission from Haywood Waterways Association reflecting on the organization’s work to protect and improve water quality in Haywood County. Since 1998, Haywood Waterways Association has instructed thousands of children, written more than a hundred…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 16:10

Roan Mountain viewsheds protected by land trust

A 76-acre tract along the Appalachian Trail on Roan Mountain has been permanently protected thanks to the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy, safeguarding scenic views and wildlife habitat. The tract is half a mile from Carvers Gap, a popular access point…
When Jim Brendle put together the first Smoky Mountain Relay in 2009, it was a pretty small affair. With only 48 runners representing six teams, the 200-plus-mile foot race didn’t draw a lot of attention.  A lot has changed since…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:59

The fascinating evolution of the fool killer

One of the oldest traditional folktales, ‘Godfather Death,’ exists in all cultures; however, the tone of the stories may vary from bleak and grim invocations of death’s certainty to humorous tales of tricksters who scheme to avoid death’s coming. Death…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:46

Oil painting demo in Bryson

Oil painter Jon Houglum will demonstrate “Oil Painting Techniques in a Portrait” for the Art League of the Smokies at 6:15 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 8, at the Swain County Center for the Arts in Bryson City. 
A Dillsboro book artist and adjunct instructor at Southwestern Community College, Frank Brannon has been selected for the first Mary B. Regan Residency Grant for a project to revitalize the Cherokee language through his artistry as a letterpress printer. 
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:34

Shearin brings Americana to Wine Seller

Singer-songwriter Dan Shearin will perform at 7 p.m. Friday, Jan. 9, at The Classic Wine Seller in Waynesville.
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:32

This must be the place

The stewardess handed me a cold Heineken.  The skyline of Boston in the distance, the beauty of a city I hold so damn close to my heart. It’s horrifically beautiful watching all of the cars, people and lights down there.…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:27

2014: Arts & Entertainment in Review

Another one is in the books.  With each passing year, I find myself digging ever deeper into what it truly means to reside and thrive in Western North Carolina. Week in and week out, I cross paths with innumerable people,…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:04

Time to eschew meat products

To the Editor: It’s time for New Year’s resolutions, particularly those about our health. Although gun violence remains the leading cause of death among young people, our most dangerous weapon is still our fork.  Forty-five times as many die of…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:04

Time for appointed tax collector in Haywood

To the Editor: As we approach the year 2015, I appeal to the decision makers of Haywood County to take a progressive, positive action with a request to fix an obvious problem with a local bill which would fix this…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 15:01

The only lesson may be that there is no lesson

One of my wife’s childhood friends lives near Wilmington. Her daughter, a senior at Appalachian State, died last week in a tragic car accident. We went to the service two days after Christmas.  One of the young lady’s sorority sisters…
Southwestern Community College student Stanley Kingsberry has landed a patent for his invention of a magnetic wrench system. Though offers to buy his invention are streaming in from companies across the nation, he’s holding out for a bid in the…
Alcohol-related traffic accidents are on the rise in Jackson County, with rates outstripping those of both North Carolina as a whole and Western North Carolina in particular, according to Jackson’s 2014 State of the County Health Report.  The report, an…
Wednesday, 31 December 2014 14:38

2014: Newsworthy award winners

2014 is all but in the rearview mirror now, and all the stories reported over the last 12 months are headed for the history books or perhaps a less-lofty final resting place. But lest we forget just what made 2014…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 15:08

Canary Coalition works to help WNC

By Thomas Crowe • Guest Columnist In case you didn't know it, right here in our midst we have a gem of an organization — an organization that has been fighting for clean air and water for all of us here…
Tuesday, 23 December 2014 17:45

Somehow, I was meant to be right here

By Laura Amour • Guest Columnist “The mountains attract seekers.” That comment was made by a cherished friend that I have known most of my life.  We grew up together in Memphis, went our separate ways, and ended up about an…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Lonely this Christmas? Hire an old-time hermit

Serendipity: an aptitude for making significant discoveries by accident. I have always loved that word, and I have had numerous serendipity moments. I would like to tell you about the one that happened today. I have been bemoaning the fact…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

All are welcome at Pigeon Center

To the Editor: An article in the Dec. 17-23 issue of The Smoky Mountain News states that the Pigeon Center in Waynesville serves “the black community and ... underserved populations.” In fact, the programs offered there draw many of us…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Real vs. fake facts, and knowing the difference

To the Editor: Denying facts because they conflict with a belief is a survival tactic for the human race. We all do it. But now it seems a lot easier for everyone to have their own “facts.” On the Internet…
We’re all at home, on vacation at last. Ella Fitzgerald is wishing us a swinging Christmas, as she does every December. First “Jingle Bells,” then “Santa Claus Is Coming to Town,” then “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and on…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Golden poster-bird

It seems like the golden-winged warbler (GWWA) has become the non-game poster bird for everything from clearcuts to shelterwood cuts to overstory removal to seed tree harvests in our national forests. The philosophy appears to be “if you build it…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Sounds in the night

By Burt Kornegay • Contributing writer It was around 10:30 p.m., just as we were going to bed, when my wife Becky and I heard strange sounds outside our home in Cullowhee. I walked out on the porch and first heard…
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Nantahala Brewing supports the A.T.

Nantahala Brewing Company in Bryson City celebrated the Christmas season with a generous donation to Friends of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to support the Appalachian Trail Conservancy’s Smokies Ridgerunner program.
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Forest Service wins public engagement awards

U.S. Forest Service employees in North Carolina recently received a handful of awards for their work in 2014, including a community engagement award for the forest planning process in the Pisgah and Nantahala national forests. 
Wednesday, 24 December 2014 00:00

Women-only ski lessons launch in January

A six-session program aimed at female skiers and snowboarders will begin on Wednesday, Jan. 7, at Cataloochee Ski Area in Maggie Valley.