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Wednesday, 21 September 2011 13:31

Magistrate cuts cause consternation for cops

A state plan to eliminate a part-time magistrate in Highlands is being roundly condemned — and resisted — by Macon County law enforcement leaders and government officials. Slashing the positions in the name of savings has been likened to a…
Wednesday, 21 September 2011 13:27

Same-sex marriage heads to the ballot

Next spring, voters in North Carolina will voice their opinions on gay marriage when a constitutional amendment banning the practice will appear on the spring primary ballot. The question isn’t whether gay marriage should be allowed; it’s already outlawed in…
Wednesday, 21 September 2011 13:22

It should not be so in America

Editor’s note: North Carolina legislators have voted to place a proposed constitutional amendment banning same sex marriage on the ballot in the May 2012 primary (see related story). The Smoky Mountain News asked Marilyn Jody, a professor emeritus at Western…
A 12-acre empty tract beside Super Wal-Mart in Waynesville has sold for $3.5 million, slated for a Michael’s craft store, Pet Smart and new location for Belk department store. Belk will move from beside Ingle’s grocery store to the, much…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:42

South Main makeover: Let the brainstorming begin

When new bikers show up for his weekly ride in Waynesville, Cecil Yount pulls out all the stops: a riveting trip through town to Super Wal-Mart and back. While lacking in scenery, Yount is sending a message to the cyclists…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:41

Waynesville Rec Center to close temporarily

The Waynesville Recreation Center will be closed for routine maintenance work through Sept. 18. The center will reopen on Sept. 19 at 5 a.m. The pool will be closed through Sept. 25. The lap pool will reopen Sept. 26 at…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:39

Prepare for flu season with vaccine

MedWest Haywood Home Care Services will offer flu shots at the Home Care building from 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m. Monday through Friday on a first-come, first-served, walk-in basis. No appointment is necessary. The Home Care building is located directly…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:39

Waynesville calls for street adopters

The Town of Waynesville is asking residents and businesses to take part in the Adopt-A-Street program. Volunteers can choose a street in town and be responsible for picking up litter on that street. For their efforts, a street sign is…
Phil Drake acknowledges that he has two kinds of enterprises. There are those launched or purchased for strategic business reasons; others he owns to ensure family members in Macon County have places to work. Drake has a lot of family,…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:35

Diversity week at WCU

The 12th annual Diversity Week will take place at Western Carolina University Sept. 18-24. A series of events, designed to help the university become a more inclusive community, include a picnic, speakers and Mountain Heritage Day. An International Day of…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:34

Constitution Day this Saturday

Readings by local residents of the U.S. Constitution will take place Sept. 17 in Maggie Valley, Cashiers and Cherokee.   This is part of a nationwide effort to revitalize civic culture. The event in Cashiers begins at 11 a.m. at…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:34

Matthews to share 9/11 experience

The Rev. Dan Mathews will share his experience of being in New York during the 9/11 attacks 10 years ago during a Live and Learn event on at 2 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22. The program will be in the Reynolds…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:33

Truck turnarounds slated for U.S. 64

A workshop on a plan to build truck turn-around locations and information stations on U.S. 64 between Franklin and Highlands in Macon County will be held from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 22, at the Cullasaja Gorge Rescue…
Harrah’s Cherokee Hotel and Casino towers over the landscape in Cherokee, its three hotel towers only surpassed in height by the mountains providing its backdrop. The polished product it offers patrons — legal gambling in a refined setting with a…
A 36-member commission charged with developing a new strategic plan for Western Carolina University is on a tight timeline: Chancellor David Belcher wants the guiding document in the board of trustees’ hands next June. The commission, a mix of university…
Macon County commissioners decided last week to try to buy the old Cartoogechaye School, raze it and build two ball fields on the site. County Manager Jack Horton called a special board meeting last Friday after realizing the possibility of…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:17

Town manager forced out in Sylva

Sylva leaders this week demanded their town manager resign, just more than two years after she was hired. “This was not my decision,” Adrienne Isenhower, now Sylva’s former town manager, told The Smoky Mountain News on Tuesday. Isenhower resigned Monday…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:15

Haywood closes in on deal to privatize landfill

Haywood County is inching closer to exiting the landfill business, with plans to hand over the county’s White Oak landfill operations to a private company who will sell space to out-of-county haulers. County commissioners will vote next month whether to…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:15

Learn Spanish at SCC

Beginner Spanish is being offered at Southwestern Community College’s Jackson Campus Monday evenings beginning Sept. 12. The course will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. through Nov. 14, and will provide the foundation for future levels. The focus of…
Haywood County business owners who have been dodging the 4 percent lodging tax will now find themselves facing a crackdown, although some dodgers may not even be aware of their crime. The lodging tax applies not only to hotels, B&B’s…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 13:00

Farmers are almost always willing to lend a hand

Tammara Talley, while gracious in her acknowledgments during the shower of verbal high-fives raining down upon her at Saturday’s farmers market, couldn’t help but beam proudly. No different, really, than any mother just delivered of perfect babies bearing precisely the…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:59

Riding the Parkway for a cause

Seconds after I heard the doorbell, my little feet hit the stone floor landing that served to separate the front door from the living room. The cold temperature of the floor on my feet meant it was colder outside. Thanksgiving…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:58

Tea Party wants to restore America

To the Editor: In a Quinnipiac University polling (8/16-8/27), 29 percent of Americans responded that they couldn’t formulate an opinion of the Tea Party because they hadn’t heard enough about it. Following are the core beliefs of the Tea Party.…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:58

Let’s send Obama to unemployment line

To the Editor: We need a plan that will help grow jobs in our district. The message to the world and the nation is simple: Western North Carolina is open for your business. We need to ease the rules that…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:57

Kudos to Haywood for landslide mapping

To the Editor: It’s good to see Haywood County leaders talking sense about landslide hazard mapping instead of stoking the fires of misinformation and conspiracy that exist in other parts of the region. The county commissioners are to be commended…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:57

Harrah’s should not have a monopoly

To the Editor: Regarding the editor’s article, “It’s time to approve dealers at Harrah’s casino” (SMN, Sept. 7-13), I agree the time is now for the North Carolina to approve live dealers. This could be a win-win situation for both…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:55

More media is almost always beneficial

I don’t listen to local radio so much anymore, but the story in last week’s edition about the demise of WRGC in Sylva still struck and emotional chord somewhere inside. When I say I don’t listen to local radio regularly,…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:51

A tribute to fishing and fish

In last week’s The Smoky Mountain News, Gary Carden began his review of Ron Rash’s collection of poems, Waking, by praising the writer’s description of a trout brought home and kept alive in a trough, where “its gills were like…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:50

Author Chris McMillan to read from debut memoir

Local author Chris McMillan will read from her new memoir at 3 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 17, at Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville. Backwards Off the Curb is the story of McMillan who, at 54, decided to leave the comforts…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:50

Revisit the library with special events

In celebration of National Library Card Sign-Up Month, the Haywood County Public Library is joining with other North Carolina libraries to urge citizens to use the smartest card in your wallet. Haywood County Public Library will be celebrating Library Card…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:49

Library to host author Pam Duncan

 Novelist Pamela Duncan will read from and discuss her novels at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, Sept. 20, at the Jackson County Public Library. Duncan was born in Asheville and raised in Black Mountain, Swannanoa and Shelby, and currently lives in…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:48

Author casts new light on an old ballad

Sharyn McCrumb, author of the Ballad Series of novels, will read from her new book, The Ballad of Tom Dooley, at 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Sept. 21, at Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville. In this new novel, New York Times…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:48

Author to illuminate the joys of fly fishing

David Joy, the author of the new book Growing Gills: A Fly Fisherman’s Journey, will hold a reading and signing at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 18, at Blue Ridge Books in Waynesville. The event is hosted by Blue Ridge…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:45

Trout Unlimited to hold river clean-up

A river-sweep cleanup of the Tuckasegee starting at the new CJ Harris boat ramp in Dillsboro is set for Thursday, Sept. 22, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. A rain makeup date is Tuesday, Sept. 27, at the same times.…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:45

Calling volunteers to clean waterways

Get out your gloves and pitch in cleaning up litter from Richland Creek in Waynesville as part of the North Carolina Big Sweep. Haywood County Big Sweep will be Saturday, Sept. 17, from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This event…
It requires getting a little wet, but that’s all part of the fun when the Haywood Waterways Association and Haywood County Schools hold the annual Kids in the Creek program. The event is for Haywood County eighth graders and will…
Outdoor enthusiasts can look forward to a two-day WNC OutdoorAthlon this fall in Macon County, Oct. 8-9. Activities include a triathlon, 5k, rock-climbing wall, disc-golf clinics, paddling demos and more. The slogan is “Live, Love, and Learn about the Mountains…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:42

New half marathon gearing up in Cherokee

Registration is open for a new half-marathon race taking place on the Cherokee Indian Reservation Saturday, Oct. 15, starting at 8 a.m. The day’s events also feature a 5k race. Proceeds will benefit the Madison Hornbuckle Children’s Cancer Foundation, providing…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:41

Workshop to explore the ethics of ecology

Training for leaders and activists in the conservation movement will explore the deeper issues of ethics, values and the root causes of ecological issues facing society from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Sept. 21 and Sept. 28 in Sylva. “The…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:40

Don’t poach it, grow ‘sang legally instead

Learn how to grow that lucrative cash-plant, ginseng, at home. The N.C. Cooperative Extension Service and the Jackson-Macon Conservation Alliance will offer a free seminar on ginseng production for homeowners. You’ll learn about state regulations for growing and hunting ginseng,…
Shutterbug alert: Balsam Mountain Trust in Sylva will hold a digital photography class Sept. 24, from 3 p.m. until sunset. Students will learn both composition and digital “darkroom” techniques. There will be both classroom instruction and a field trip to…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:37

WCU’s Rooted in the Mountains symposium

The second-annual Rooted in the Mountains symposium at Western Carolina University will be held Thursday, Oct. 20, and Friday, Oct. 21, in the Grandroom of the A.K. Hinds University Center. The Rooted in the Mountains event was created to raise…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:36

Get outdoors and support land conservation

Carolina Mountain Land Conservancy is challenging outdoor enthusiasts to support land conservation simply by hiking. The Hiking Challenge encourages all those who enjoy the beauty of Western North Carolina’s mountains to explore and discover the breathtaking scenery of the conservancy’s…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:36

Land Trust to hold Tessentee Preserve clean-up

The Land Trust of the Little Tennessee will hold a Stewardship Workday at Tessentee Bottomland Preserve in southern Macon County on Saturday, Sept. 17, from 9 a.m. until noon. This will be a general “cleanup” day. September and October will…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:35

See the elk via two guided trips

As part of their popular Eco Tour Outreach Program, Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust hold two elk tours in Cataloochee Valley with a Smokies elk specialist will on Thursday, Sept. 22, and Wednesday, Sept. 28. The event includes a picnic dinner; the…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:34

Learn to share the land with bears

With fall comes hungry bears, and the B.E.A.R. Taskforce wants to help people learn to peacefully coexist with these great animals and decrease the growing number of human-bear conflicts. “B.E.A.R. Talk …..In Your Neighborhood” will be held at 5:30 p.m.…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:32

A few hours on top

Yesterday’s (9/11) wonderful late summer weather — mostly clear mid 70s — enticed my family up to Black Balsam for a walk on top. Black Balsam is an easy way to explore unique high elevation balds because you can drive…
There’s a new call to arms for hunters of wild boar: shoot as many as you can — day or night, anytime of year — and ask questions later. Wild boar are a reviled scourge on the landscape. Yet until…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 12:26

Otters are what beautiful aspires to be

Earlier this week about nine in the morning, I was standing on the Everett Street bridge in the heart of downtown Bryson City. Looking down I saw two otters in the dark-tinted currents of Tuckasegee. I retrieved my binoculars from…
Wednesday, 14 September 2011 18:25

Rally returns to Maggie

Maggie Valley will play host to the Carolina Harley Davidson Dealers Fall Rally in the Valley from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m., Sept. 16 and 17, at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds. The event will feature live music, bike stunt…