Located amidst the ice cream shops and candy stores in Maggie Valley’s Market Square is a different kind of establishment — Wild Market.

For the ancient Cherokees and other southeastern Indian tribes, the greatest causes of illness were the spirits of vengeful animals. They were so angered at the killing of their brethren by hunters they convened a great council and devised human illnesses as payback.

Just north of Cullowhee, at the curvy, gravel terminus of Cane Creek Road, sits the building containing the world’s largest wilderness medicine classroom. 

Landmark Learning, a nationally accredited school offering a variety of courses in wilderness medicine, started using the building in May, though there’s still heavy equipment in view as fine-tuning continues. The 8,000-square-foot building contains a 2,400-square-foot classroom, a commercial kitchen, and a student lounge. Up an even steeper hill than the one that leads to the main building is a pair of dorm-style cabins and a terraced camping area, which together can accommodate 36 people.

By Shannon Icenhour • Guest Columnist

Fall is almost over, but October was not just for trick-or-treating; it also represented National Physical Therapy Month. This year’s campaign was “Choose Physical Thereapy.” With advancements in the medical field, medications are readily available and often seem to be the easiest option to treat pain. However, the American Physical Therapy Association encourages you to seek physical therapy as a way to heal your pain, not just mask it.

mtnvoicesLast summer while I was walking along the creek below our home, small splotches of red and white at the base of a large hemlock caught my attention. Upon inspection, these proved to be the flowers (white) and fruit (red) of the dainty partridge berry vine. Few other plants display this year’s flowers and last year’s berries at the same time.

art frByron Ballard is one misunderstood witch.

“There is this whole cultural mythology that witches aren’t human. They’re seen as these otherworldly creatures,” she said. “Then, you have this Hollywood icon in films, and with things like ‘American Horror Story’ or ‘Sabrina The Teenage Witch,’ these beloved characters, but that’s not who we are or what we’re about.”

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