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c o n t e n t s Catch a break This month’s features 6


Katie Wadington, editor

Day Care 101 Find out what questions to ask when looking for child care.


Community in motion Asheville Community Movement offers gymnastics and much more.



Afternoon option


A new after-school program exposes kids to art and design.

Letterboxing & more

How do day care centers feed kids and keep it healthy?


Ideas for keeping the kids busy when you’re outdoors.


Dads at home Meet three Asheville-area stay-at-home dads.

Child care & nutrition


Fall festivals Activities and events around WNC through Halloween.

Big-time holiday The corner of College and Central in Weaverville knows how to do Halloween.

In every issue

On the cover

Artist’s Muse ...................42

Scout Schermenhorn, By Kaelee Denise Photography,

Kids’ Voices .....................31

Growing Together............44 Story Times .....................48 Librarian’s Picks...............49 Divorced Families ............46 FEAST .............................50 Home-school Happenings .56 Nature Center Notes ........57 Kids Page ........................59 Calendar .........................60

When my daughter was a toddler, we lived a few miles north of downtown Chicago. My husband and I both worked full-time. Online businesses were just starting to take off, and in a big city there were plenty of startups. Some of these aimed to make your life easier. My favorite was Peapod, an online grocer. You ordered your groceries online, picked a delivery time and could even use coupons. Sure, the convenience of it all meant the price was higher than doing your own shopping. And it wasn’t something that we used often. But it was a lifesaver when we did. I had this in the back of my mind when we were thinking of stories for this toddler-themed issue. So you’ll find a story on Asheville businesses that can make family life a little easier on Page 20. There’s no doubt that having a little one can slow you down more than you’d like. Take hiking, for instance. That 4-mile trek you really want to take? Not nearly as easy with an 18-month-old in tow. So how do you keep the attention of little ones while outdoors? Try letterboxing, for starters. We give you a primer to this on Page 14. When my kids were small, I had to undertake the daunting task of finding a day care center. Perhaps you’ve had to do the same. Find some tips for easing the search, starting on Page 6. Are you ready for fall? I certainly am. On Page 32, you’ll find listings of the plethora of events that fill fall in WNC. On Page 34, learn about a Weaverville family that goes all out for Halloween. And on Page 38, get inspired to make Halloween-themed cupcakes. Enjoy the season!

P.O. Box 2090, Asheville, NC 28802 828-232-5845 | PRESIDENT AND PUBLISHER Randy Hammer

.com Are you a member? Join the conversation, post photos and connect with other parents at Look for WNC Parent on Facebook and Twitter.

WNC PARENT EDITOR Katie Wadington — 232-5829


ADVERTISING/CIRCULATION Brittany Martin — 232-5898, CALENDAR CONTENT Due by Oct. 10. E-mail ADVERTISING DEADLINE Advertising deadline for the November issue is Oct 16.




101 Tips for finding the center that fits your family best By Susanna Barbee WNC Parent contributor


hen new parents go back to work or begin a new job, they must find a center or person whom they trust enough to care for and nurture their precious little one. As so many moms, dads and guardians know, this is no insignificant or simple task. Swannanoa mom Nichole Montgomery found Valley Child Development Center in Swannanoa when her now 16-year-old daughter, Whitney, was born. Whitney attended the center for five years before she started kindergarten. Now, Montgomery is the guardian of a 10-month-old, Bronx, who spends his days at Valley. “I went there myself and looked around, and I also looked at some other centers. I looked at the staff turnover rate. To me, if the staff is happy, the kids are happy,� said Montgomery. When searching for a center, parents need to take their time and consider several different


Children at Irene Wortham Center in West Asheville celebrate Hawaiian Day. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

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places before deciding. What may be a perfect center for one family may not be the right fit for another. The North Carolina Star Rated License system, initiated in 1999 then revamped in 2005, can help families who are in search of a day care or a family child care home. Facilities can receive one to five starts, where one star means the center or child care home meets North Carolina’s minimum requirements. A center can apply for a rating of two to five stars. The rating system is based on two components: staff education and program standards. Additionally, centers having a two component license can earn a “quality point” for enhanced standards in those areas. The educational levels and experience of the administrators and teacher determine part of the staff education component, while aspects such as cleanliness, variety of play materials, and teacher/ child ratio determine the program standards component. Sandra Garcia Boyer with Irene Wortham Center in Asheville says centers are inspected yearly, and star ratings are re-evaluated every three years. Centers are also inspected twice a year for sanitation standards. So how does a family find the right place? “I recommend that parents come prepared with questions to ask directors and teachers,” said Jennifer Bosworth, children’s service coordinator at Irene Wortham. “Having a pre-planned list of questions will prevent you from forgetting to ask those questions which are important to you. For parents, doing a little research prior to visiting centers can be very helpful. Understanding the NC Star Rated License system will help parents understanding the difference in star rated licenses can help parents choose a center that will meet their needs.” “We love for families to start with a tour of our facility,” said Amanda Belue, director of Long’s Chapel UMC Child Enrichment Center in Clyde. “We educate them about our center and learn about their expectations. The family can then decide if we’re a good fit for them.”

Accommodating families

Day cares across the area accommodate families in a number of ways, from supporting special needs to honoring family choices on diapers and foods. Continues on Page 8

Lynn McClure, director of Valley Child Development Center in Swannanoa. JOHN FLETCHER/JFLETCHER@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM


QUESTIONS TO ASK Ask about the child to staff interaction and ratio. » How many children is each staff member responsible for daily? » Are the younger and older children separated? » How do you accommodate children with special needs? Ask about the center’s policies. » What are the center’s policies on discipline, toileting, nap time and other important issues? » Are the policies in writing? Ask for a copy. Ask about sick children policies and procedures. » How is medicine administered? » How are parents told about illness among the children?

» When must children stay home because of illness? » Is there a nurse or doctor to help with medical care? » Does the center keep a record of healthrelated problems, such as illnesses, injuries and accidents, for each child? How are parents notified if your child is injured? Ask about staff training. » Are all staff members trained in child development? » What are the training requirements for staff members? » Are all staff members certified in basic first aid/CPR? » Are all staff members trained to identify abuse and/or neglect?

WARNING SIGNS OF AN INADEQUATE CHILD CARE CENTER 1. Disrespect for your concerns 2. Frequent staff changes/inadequate coverage 3. Low standards 4. Lack of communication


5. Vague or undocumented policies

From “5 Warning Signs your Child’s Daycare is Not For You” by Lindsay Hutton of



“I recommend that parents come prepared with questions to ask directors and teachers.”

Continued from Page 7

“We have a Parent Advisory Group that acts as support for our programs, our teachers, and our parents,” said Lynn McClure, director of Valley Child Development Center. “They conduct fundraising events and provide volunteers to work in our program” Valley includes children with special needs in its classrooms and uses an assessment process that incorporates parent feedback. Based on that data, the teacher develops goals to implement at home and at school for the coming quarter. Hazelwood Early Care and Preschool in Hazelwood has a resource and referral program to help children, says director Vicky Parker. “If we and the parents see a concern regarding a developmental skill, we conduct an assessment and the child receives the needed services,” she says. Haywood County Schools takes over services at age 3. Irene Wortham Center specializes in serving children with developmental disabilities and provides on-site physical, speech and occupational therapies. “Research has shown that children with disabilities significantly benefit from attending class with nondisabled peers,” Boyer said. “Typically developing children are role models from whom a child with disabilities learns age-appropriate communication and social behaviors. The benefit


JENNIFER BOSWORTH, children’s service coordinator at Irene Wortham Center

“In Bronx’s classroom at Valley, everything is very age appropriate,” Montgomery said. “They have a wonderful climbing area. He’s pulling up and trying to learn to walk, and his room is very safe. This holds true for the entire facility.”

Time out to children without disabilities is that they learn to understand and accept differences.” Many centers are also accommodating families with regard to organic formula, eco-friendly diapers, and other “green” choices. “Our food coordinator tries to use as many organically grown foods as possible. Our center grows our own herbs to be used on our meals as well,” Belue said. “We have many children in both our infant and toddler programs that use eco-friendly diapers. We welcome families who choose these types of diapers.”

Care plus education

A majority of centers in the WNC area use Creative Curriculum, which is based on the theory that children learn through play. Classroom routines encourage active involvement, meaningful experimentation and reinforcement through repetition. “One of the focuses at our center is on play. We make our play intentional with teachers asking open-ended questions to the children,” Belue said. “For our infants and toddlers, we focus on fine and gross motor skills, language development, and appropriate responses to age-appropriate behaviors like biting, hitting, kicking, and scratching.”

Some parents do not need a full-time day care, but would like their older baby or toddler to receive some socialization. Mommy Morning Out programs, part-time programs that provide educational and developmentally-appropriate activities to older babies, are not only great for baby but can give mom or dad time to run errands, work from home, or complete other necessary activities. Many daycare facilities offer this for older babies and young toddlers. “The children in this program learn to share, play, and interact with others their age. Children at this age are so eager to learn and explore,” said Sidney McCrory, director of First United Methodist Child Development Center in Waynesville. “Learning to share and be with others is a great skill to tackle at an early age so they can be great little learners in the future.” When the time comes to make the important decision of where your child will spend his/her day, a parent must consider facility rating, the center’s mission, cost and proximity to home or work. For Montgomery, though Valley met all of her expectations, her reason for choosing them was intangible. “It feels like family,” she said, “Every one of the teachers know the children by their names. We feel like we’re truly welcome.”

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MOVEMENT Asheville mother and daughter open new gymnastics venue By Barbara Blake,


here’s a big new presence in Asheville in the world of gymnastics, but it’s so much more than tumbling mats and balance beams. Asheville Community Movement, which opened last week with motherdaughter team Angela Trail and Becca Hall at the helm, is a cavernous, 35,000square-foot venue that offers everything from competitive and recreational gymnastics to after-school programming, Continues on Page 10

Becca Hall, co-owner and director of Asheville Community Movement, the new gymnastics business in town, works with Jenna Travis, 8, on the balance beam. At left is Mei Mei Whelchel, 10. JOHN COUTLAKIS/JCOUTLAKIS@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM



GYMNASTICS Continued from Page 9

weekend parents-night-outs, summer camp and birthday parties. And at the center of every activity is a commitment to nurturing children in a holistic way, both on and off the mats, and making contributions to the community outside its walls. “We chose our name very carefully, because we needed it to encompass our bigger idea — we wanted a movement center that is focused on building community,” Hall said. “We offer an amazing gymnastics program that is well organized and taught by well-trained coaches, and we offer a path for every type of gymnast, whether they want to compete, perform as an artist or just have fun with it,” she said. “However, we want to continue building programs so that our facility can offer many different movement options, with a strong, healthy, community feel throughout.”

Ninjas and tumblers

Asheville Community Movement, in a



former antiques barn at 812 Riverside Drive just north of The Bywater, offers a dizzying array of classes, from free play for infants and toddlers to ninja training to teen strength-conditioning and endurance

to advanced gymnastics and a performance team. The after-school “Movers and Shakers” program offers physical activities including Ultimate Frisbee, gymnastics, dance and basketball, along with homework help and in-house clubs focusing on art, music and scouting. Another unique offering that brings in the community-building theme is the weekly “Fun(d) Raisers,” a drop-in program for children age 5 and older from 7-11 p.m. each Friday and Saturday night. Asheville Community Movement will contribute 10 percent of the $5-per-hour fees to a qualified nonprofit organization or school chosen by the parents. Hall, 28, has coached gymnastics and worked in child care since she was 14, and Trail, the mother of five, coached preschool gymnastics while in college and has child care experience both as a consumer and a teacher. Trail, who is a full-time Internet technology analyst, earned an MBA a few years ago and had always dreamed of starting a business that involved children and community. “Over the years, when I’d get frustrated with my job, she would casually mention that we could just start our own gym,”

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Hall said. “When I was suddenly without a job last year, my path became pretty clear … I wanted to coach, and my mother and I both wanted to run a business our way, with our values and beliefs on caring for children and community at its core,” she said. The dream that took roots then is now a reality, with plenty of hiccups and triumphs along the way.

Tough and tenacious

“Working together on this has been really easy, because even when our ideas differ, our values line up,” Hall said. “The only hard part is that she has to work her first job until late in the evening, which leaves me with a whole lot on my plate during business hours, which is exhausting, but also really good for me.” Trail said working with her daughter to open the gym has been “incredible.” “I have been so impressed by Becca’s tenacity, problem-solving skills, energy, foresight, customer service skills, balancing acts and dogged determination,” Trail said. “But she was a gymnast, and gymnasts are tough, strong, determined, flexible, have good balance and always smile even when in pain, so I guess that’s to be expect-

LEARN MORE What: Asheville Community Movement, a U.S. Gymnastics Club member. Where: 812 Riverside Drive, just north of The Bywater. Hours: 9 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Thursday; 9 a.m. 11 p.m. Friday; 9 a.m.-noon and 7-11 p.m. Saturday. Closed Sunday. Offerings: Competitive and recreational gymnastics and other movement classes for all ages; an after-school program; weekend parentsnight-out; summer camp; birthday parties; private lessons. Contact: office@ashevillecommunity or 254-6060; visit or find Asheville Community Movement on Facebook, @ACMovement on Twitter.

ed,” she said. “But I still have been amazed on a daily basis watching her figure out how to do something she has never done and has absolutely no training in.” That included finding the building, navigating the vast and perplexing citygovernment permitting process, building a website and choosing software, writing


schedules and curriculum, shopping for equipment and outfitting the sprawling venue with colorful, inviting décor — often working 20-hour days to get it all done. Allison Blake, mother of 7-year-old Anna Lee and 10-year-old Cole, said Trail’s and Hall’s work has been worth the effort, and both her children are excited about taking classes and attending the afterschool program. “This company is so passionate about people — they are holistic in their approach, and have given such thought and preparation into every detail of their beautiful space,” Blake said. “They want to support their students and their families, and their positive energy and love is felt through every phone call, every interaction,” she said. “And Becca is not only extremely talented, she brings out the best in each student. She knows when to be gentle and when to challenge, to help each student believe in themselves and each other.”

Community collaboration

Hall and Trail said they couldn’t have launched the business without the support of so many others, including Hall’s 19-yearContinues on Page 12


GYMNASTICS Continued from Page 11

old brother Justin, who has been a constant presence in the project and will be a summer camp and after-school counselor at the gym, and Hall’s longtime fellow coach, Kelley Mihok. “Justin has dedicated his life to this when it was never in his plan — he works so hard,” Hall said. And Mihok, who coached with Hall for five years, took a “leap of faith” and left another job to become part of the team, Trail said. “Kelley has been essential in laying the foundation of our program by organizing the business office and managing start-up projects; she has brought so much in the way of experience, positive people skills and organizational vision,” Trail said. “She is an amazing coach, and her reputation precedes her in the community.” Mother and daughter wrote their own business plan, but met with SCORE volunteers and received volunteer help with legal and tax issues, an invaluable asset. “And there are so many amazing families who have stepped up to help us, and it wouldn’t have been possible to do this without them,” Hall said. “As my mother said to me, ‘We are not an island. We did this with the help of our family and community.’” More than 80 children had been signed up for classes and/or after-school even before the official opening last week, and Hall already is dreaming of expansion. “I want a really strong dance program and aerial arts program, and I’d like to offer gymnastics as a performance art,” she said. “At some point we’d love to have a smoothie and snack bar, a deck overlooking the river, river activities, various sports, and fitness classes for parents while the kids are in class. But right now we’re focusing on building the gymnastics and afterschool.” Now that the hardest work is done, all that remains is excitement, Hall said. “I’ve learned so much, and I’m excited for every step ahead,” she said. “I guess what I’m most excited about is becoming a hub for this community — I love being surrounded by good people, and so far, everyone who is a part of this has been amazing. “I couldn’t be happier with life right now.”


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Kids solve problems,


Organizers are seeking donations for scholarships

By Carol Motsinger


or Chris Joyell, executive director of Asheville Design Center, the center’s after-school programs are more than an opportunity to teach students. It’s an opportunity to develop “young community advocates,” he said. Asheville Community Design Lab AfterSchool (ACDL-AS) is an interdisciplinary, project-driven curriculum focused on finding collective solutions to community problems through creative experimentation. Elementary school students connect with community mentors such as artists, designers and engineers during “Innovation Hour,” and students engage in hands-on projects often related to a larger community need. This school year, ACDL-AS is at Claxton, Hall Fletcher, and Vance elementary schools. ACDL also works with Asheville Middle School students. ACDL is a program of Roots + Wings School of Art, based at All Souls Cathedral in Biltmore Village and the design lab at Randolph Learning Center, in partnership with the Asheville Design Center. It began as a partnership with “irl,” In Real Life, an Asheville City Schools Foundation afterschool program that connects middle schoolers with UNC Asheville students. Organizers are now seeking donations to expand the program’s reach; ACDL-AS donates one scholarship for every 12 students that sign up. “We have 40 elementary students enrolled in our program for this fall with seven on ACDL-AS scholarships,” Huebner said. “A few local businesses have stepped up to donate between $130 and $300 per month to sponsor a student, and we still have 15 more students in need of financial support.” It costs $325 each month for a student to attend ACDL-AS five days a week. ACDLAS pays artist educators and gives a portion of the profits back to host elementary

Vance students play with shadow puppets, inspired by a teaching artist who did stories with puppets. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

MORE ABOUT THE PROGRAM ACDL-AS offers elementary programs from 2:30-5:30 p.m. on school days at Claxton, Hall Fletcher, and Vance elementary schools. ACDL also works with Asheville Middle School students. Two-, three- and five-day enrollment is open to all elementary students and scholarships are available. To enroll, sponsor a child, or find out how your school can become a host school, visit

schools’ parent-teacher organizations. Joyell stresses that the program is designed to help compensate for classroom curriculum shifts that have moved away from “programming that allows children to expand their mind.” “We want to give them challenges and show how they can be a critical piece” in finding solutions, he said, noting that the wants children to be able to experiment and have the time and support to rework solu-


tions if they fail. One example: The after-school program is working on designing an outdoor learning environment at Hall Fletcher Elementary. While they teach students about vaulted domes and weather stations, organizers will seek their input on the design. At a recent after-school session, Huebner “walked in and it was such a great feeling,” she said. The three-hour program began with a snack, followed by physical activity outside. Then the students gathered for the “Innovation Hour.” “That’s when we focus on offering kids diverse choices,” she said. That day, students could learn how to weave; another wrote a story for shadow puppets. Another group stayed outside, focusing on yoga or a soccer skills session. After Innovation Hour, the students are encouraged to work on homework or continue projects. “There is some structure, but there is some freedom where they can decide from options,” Huebner said. “That’s where growth comes in, even for adults.”


Trying to get your kids in the woods?

Try letterboxing By Paul Clark, WNC Parent contributor

Here’s your dilemma — you’ve been running around for weeks, you’re near the end of your rope and you really, really need to get out into the woods for a little relaxation. Trouble is, you’ve still got the kids. That’s no trouble at all, said Robin Crawford, who regularly goes hiking with her two children, often with friend Nina Veteto and her two kids. You just make a game out of being out there and let the kids discover the same rocks, streams and tall trees that you love so much. very hot day, but it kept them interested, especially my 5-year-old, who couldn’t care less about the Revolutionary War. She likes getting stamps in her book.”

Keeping children engaged in their surroundings when they’re far away from their video screens takes a little planning, a lot of creativity and an infectious enthusiasm for sharing the beauty of a forest’s natural surroundings, Crawford said. And you’d be surprised how easily children take to the woods, once you give them a little direction.

Get outside

Fun in a box

She and Veteto do that by letterboxing. Letterboxing is an international activity wherein people go searching for things — typically boxes with journals inside — based on clues they download from the Internet. “The kids get really excited because it’s a real live treasure hunt. How often do you get to do that?” Crawford said. Letterboxers hide small, waterproof boxes in publicly accessible places, such as state and city parks, and upload clues as to their whereabouts online. Using the clues, searchers set out to find the boxes, and when they do, they stamp their journals with an often handmade stamp inside the box and stamp the logbook inside the box with a stamp of their own. Crawford, a Hendersonville resident, and Veteto have been going out with their children for a while now. They even make their own boxes to hide, with logbooks inside that their children delight in opening to see stamps and notes from people from all over the country. (There are several letterbox sites online, including


Sophie Crawford stamps in a log book at a box found in Asheville. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT “My kids and I went on a trip to Philadelphia this summer and printed out box clues along the route that we would be taking,” Crawford said. “We stopped at rest areas and Valley Forge, where the boxes were hidden on the nature trail. It was a

There are many reasons to take children into the woods, not the least of which is that an appreciation for nature started at a young age stays with a person the rest of his or her life, Crawford said. Also, it gives parents a chance to instill respect for the forest, such as not leaving the trail because you might break delicate plants. Parents can show children how to identify poison ivy and how to make sure they carry all their trash out. Other ways to keep kids interested on a hike, Crawford said, include taking guidebooks to see if they can identify flowers, plants and trees. Veteto conducts scavenger hunts, asking the kids to find something blue (not so easy in the woods), or something alive, or something that helps keep a bird dry in the rain (feathers count). “Kids have a competitive spirit, and they want to find that bird’s nest,” Crawford said. She gives her kids digital cameras because if they’re taking photos, they’re thinking about where they are and not where they could be. She doesn’t always print the photos — shooting them is enough for her children, especially since they can review them immediately. “We have a lot of sneaker shots,” she said, laughing. And she always packs snacks. “Wellfed and -hydrated kids are happy kids.

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LETTERBOXING WORKSHOP Introduction to Letterboxing: 10:30 a.m.noon Oct. 13 at REI in Biltmore Park. Materials fee $30. To register, call Robyn at 702-2311 or Nina at 712-5531. Space is limited.

From left, Wren Veteto, Jonah Crawford, Mia Veteto and Sophie Crawford rest on a cool stone chair found while letterboxing at Jump Off Rock in Laurel Park. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

You’ve got to have liquids and snacks or you’re going to hear whining the whole way.” But letterboxing is her family’s favorite. “It takes you to places that you’ve never been to before, even though you’ve been past them a million times,” she said, noting the location of a box near Merrimon Avenue in Asheville. “A few weeks ago, Jonah and I went to some Civil War boxes in Asheville, a cemetery behind Asheville Imaging (Center). He was fascinated,” Crawford said of her son. “And we drove to another box in Kenilworth that had an old African-American cemetery behind it. Many of the graves were unmarked, and that opened up a whole conversation about civil rights and why those people were not buried with white people. “It was almost like a history lesson rolled into a treasure hunt, and he didn’t realize he was learning all this stuff.”



Staying home 3 WNC dads spend their days with kids, chores and more while mom goes to work


By Betty Lynne Leary, WNC Parent contributor

Brian Powchak vividly remembers his first days as a full-time, stay-at-home dad. His wife was out of bed before 6 a.m. to get ready for work while Powchak caught a few extra winks until their 1-year-old daughter, Ava, woke up. “I made some coffee while Ava ate cereal and gabbed,” he recalls. “We read the news and listened to music. Some days we’d go outside and there was always grocery shopping to be done.” Powchak, of West Asheville, is one of many dads in WNC who has traded an income for time at home to raise children. Here, we’ll profile a few of them.

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The Powchaks Powchak fell easily into his new role as primary caregiver for Ava, who had been under Mom’s care for the first year of her life when nursing and nurturing were constants. The couple reversed roles in an effort to keep Ava at home under parental care, not day care. “It was a glorious time of watching Ava learn by leaps and bounds, getting some ‘me’ time, and really feeling, maybe even synching, with the pulse of our family life,” Powchak says. Wife Amy is a special education teacher and Powchak holds a master’s degree in education. When Ava was born, the couple took a hard look at their financial situation and worked the numbers so Amy could stay home for a year. At the end of the first year, with surplus funds in the bank supplemented by a work bonus and tax return money, the couple realized they could live on one salary for another year. At the time, Powchak was working in a very challenging class for students with emotional and behavioral disabilities. “I was ecstatic for the chance to stay home and really bond with Ava,” Powchak says. “A year of diapers and naps, toys and dishes seemed like a dream come true. I

Brian Powchak’s first stint as a stay-at-home dad started after daughter Ava spent her first year at home with his wife, Amy. He then stayed home another year with son Luke. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

had always wanted a family, and now that I had one, this seemed the best way to forge a bond with my daughter that would last a lifetime.”


The arrangement worked so well that when son Luke was born, they repeated Continues on Page 18


Dan Ford stays home with his three sons, from left, Bennett, Anderson and Charlie. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

The Fords Dan Ford, of Bent Creek, has shared in those awkward moments in social situations when the inevitable “so, what do you do?” question comes up in conversation. “I have less issue with saying ‘I stay home with my kids’ than I do watching people respond to it,” Ford explains. “Some respond with jokes, some with unease and some clearly have nothing left to say in the conversation. It’s rare that I meet another dad who can really respond with an appreciation for what this role requires.” Ford has three boys, ranging in age from 6 months to 7 years, and began his role as the primary caregiver when the company he worked for disbanded and his position was eliminated. While he and

The Powchaks Continued from Page 17

the cycle with Mom staying home the first year and Dad staying home the second, and this time, the third year. “We had liv-


wife, Elizabeth, a product development manager for Biltmore Inspirations, first talked of where they would have to move for his next job, the discussion soon changed to Ford supporting his wife’s fulltime work. “It really stemmed around simplifying our world and establishing a slower pace in our home rather than continuing at the pace we initially established and thought necessary,” Ford explains. “I looked forward to being a stay-at-home dad with three boys in Western North Carolina — what could be better?” Ford has balanced his time by serving as a part-time, visiting assistant professor at Clemson University, where he teaches lecture and studio design courses for graduate level students in the School of Planning, Development, Preservation and Land-

scape Architecture. The arrangement allows for some adult conversation and a contribution to the family income, yet Ford notes that, “Our marriage is now, more than ever, a partnership and a new definition of what providing can and should mean.” Ford is willing to continue his role as primary caregiver as long as it works for the family even on those rough days when his infant, toddler and school-age boys all have different needs often at the same time. “I must remind myself that this truly is a gift of time, and time is almost a lost commodity in many of today’s families,” Ford says. “My boys will never be little boys again, and the time I spend with them now, I’m trusting, will remain with them in a meaningful way well beyond my years.”

ing frugally down to a science by that point,” Powchak says. “Having one spouse home meant dinners were made and laundry was done, which lightened the load on the working spouse. It made sense for our family and made a huge impact on our happiness.” The hardest thing for Powchak was

taking that financial leap of faith. The family made sacrifices and lived within a strict budget but the benefits far outweighed the sacrifice in his eyes. “Staying at home is the absolute best decision, next to marrying my wife, I ever made!” he says.

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Brian Perry relishes the time he hasn’t missed with daughter Reilly. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

The Perrys For Brian Perry, of Reynolds, staying home with daughter Reilly, now 8, was a chance he wasn’t going to miss. Perry was working full time when he and wife Betty, a rehabilitation service director and speech language pathologist for Mountain Ridge Wellness Center in Black Mountain, celebrated the birth of their only child. Perry had been in the Navy when his first daughter from a previous marriage had been small, and he missed out on much of her young life. “I have not missed any of the same time with Reilly, and that has been the best part of this decision,” he says. “I love being home with her and it really has made an impact on the kind of kid Reilly has become.” Reilly and her dad, a self-described sports enthusiast, spend hours together on many different fields of play. Reilly wields a swift softball bat and has a fluid stroke with her golf clubs. Mom gets in on the action, too, and both parents helped coach Reilly’s softball team. The hardest part of being a stay-at-home dad for Perry came when Reilly was younger as it was hard to find other dads for a play date. “The parks were full of stay-at-home moms, not dads, which was a bit awkward,” Perry explains. “The role reversal was very difficult initially, but as I adjusted, it’s been great.”



Making life a bit


From food delivery to drop-in day care and more, local businesses give parents some breathing room By Pam J. Hecht, WNC Parent contributor


or some busy parents, particularly those with younger kids, finding the time and energy to do it all can be tough. To make parenting life easier, several savvy businesses in town have stepped in with services designed to save time, energy and often, sanity.


Graham and Andrea DuVall help prepare boxes of produce from local farmers for delivery at Mother Earth Produce. JOHN FLETCHER/JFLETCHER@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM

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Flexible child care When The Tree House, A Café at Play, a 2,400-square-foot indoor play space and café for families, opened in North Asheville last December, parents soon began asking if they could leave their kids there for short periods of time to run quick errands, says owner Tanya Jennings. She describes the drop-in child care service she provides as being “like a baby sitter but even better,” without the commitment of full-time day care. “It’s a safe, loving environment to explore and parents trust us,” says Jennings, who, like nearly all of the staff, is certified in early childhood education. At three hours max, the cost is $8/ hour and 13 cents per minute for kids ages 1-8. Walk-ins are welcome most days, says Jennings, but its best to call ahead by at least 30 minutes. The service has come in handy, says Anne Raustol, of Asheville, who has dropped off her son Oliver, 2, and Esten, 7, to run errands, visit the dentist or spend time with one child at a time. » The Tree House, 1020 Merrimon Ave., Suite 103, North Asheville;, 505-2589 Others offering drop-in care: » Trinity Presbyterian Preschool, 17 Shawnee Trail, Asheville,, 299-3433, ext. 322 (register 24 hours in advance to ensure a space) » Charlotte Street Kids, offers drop-in afternoon child care for grades K-6 (register at least 24 hours in advance), 337 Charlotte St., Asheville, in St. Mary’s Church,, 239-0129 » YWCA of Asheville provides free drop-in child care through its New Choices program for parents who are in transition, looking for employment or continuing their education. Call 2547206, ext. 113. » Keep a lookout for Play Date Café, scheduled to open next year, most likely in central or South Asheville.

Help at your fingertips

Sometimes there aren’t enough hours to get everything on the to-do-list done, particularly for a busy parent. Some turn to a concierge service, for help with just about any chore or task under Continues on Page 22


Oliver Raustol plays at The Tree House on Merrimon Avenue in Asheville. The business offers drop-in care for a maximum of three hours. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT


Taryn Gentry founded Geaux Girl, a concierge service. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

Making life easier Continued from Page 21

the sun (or moon.) When Dan Norris, a single dad of three small children in Asheville, felt overwhelmed with a busy career and 50 percent custody of the kids, he contacted Taryn Gentry, owner of Geaux Girl Concierge. She found him a nanny to fill in the gaps when he couldn’t be at home and did a few work-related administrative tasks, he says. Gentry also helped Norris organize and clean out his basement, discarding or selling unneeded items, which was a huge relief, he says, and helped Norris plan a family vacation. For a one-time “engagement fee,” clients can contact the company on an asneeded basis, with hourly rates depending on the services required. Gentry, a single mom of two who started Geaux Girl in early 2010, works with an office staff of two and more than 40 contractors to provide a variety of personal and professional services “limited only by your imagination, as long as it’s feasible and legal” — everything from errands, home repairs and pet care to clothing/toy consignment, party planning and property management, she says. “We eliminate both the mundane and larger projects, so that parents can have more time to spend with their kids,” says Gentry. » Geaux Girl Concierge,, 335-9816.


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Adam and Natalie Malis, of Waynesville, use Busy Bottoms diaper service for their daughter Beka Lane. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT Others: » TLC For You Inc.,, 670-1379. » A Gift of Time,, 646-0798.

Diapers to your door

For parents who prefer cloth rather than disposable diapers, a diaper delivery service can make the chore of changing wee ones easier. “Not having to wash and prepare diapers allows me more time to do what is more important — spending time with my son,” says Melanie MacNeil, of Hendersonville, who uses Busy Bottoms Diaper Service. The Asheville-based service is family run and serves WNC. Owner David Moore Sr. says Busy Bottoms makes cloth diapering an affordable, convenient, greener alternative to disposables, using only organic, environmentally-friendly products. Customers can order the service on either a longterm or month-by-month basis. The company is also expanding to serve area day care centers, he says, since parents often switch to disposable diapers when their children start attending because centers typically use disposable diapers. » Busy Bottoms Diaper Service,, 713-7293. Others: » Smarty Pants Diaper Service,, 6847254. » BabeeGreens, an Asheville-based business owned by moms, manufactures organic diapers locally, selling online and in shops worldwide,, 877-868-6259.

Scott Myers and Pamela Lalik own Wingbean, which delivers vegan meals. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

Healthy food, delivered What could be better than a bounty of fresh fruits and veggies or freshly-prepared healthy meals delivered straight to your family’s door? Mother Earth Produce, of Asheville, makes access to local, organic food easier by offering prices comparable to stores and saving time and fuel costs with free delivery, says owner Andrea DuVall. With weekly delivery to homes within 50 miles of driving distance of Asheville, Duvall and husband/co-owner Graham, have found that parents enjoy the service because they can “customize orders to fit the needs of their families,” says Duvall. Unlike a CSA, Mother Earth Produce works with a network of local, sustainable farms and businesses year-round, offering flexible, online ordering and delivering produce within 48 hours from harvest. Families can order fruit, vegetables or both and many typically add bread and eggs as well, DuVall says, “So if they have to go to the grocery store, it is usually a super quick trip.” Other products offered include cheese, hummus, jam, pickles, herbs and coffee. Parents who don’t have time to cook but want their family to eat healthy meals have other local options. Wingbean delivers a rotating selection of affordable organic vegan meals and grocery items to a growing number of parents, who rely on them for convenient, trusted nutrition for their families, says owner Scott Myers. “Eating healthy food is a top priority in our busy family, and since I don’t have time to prepare every meal, Wingbean helps me keep the fridge stocked with


homemade healthy options,” says Melodie Friedman, of Arden, whose sons, ages 7 and 10, especially enjoy the lemon pepper seitan, black bean patties, potato dishes and homemade shitake mushroom bacon. “Having Wingbean meals to supplement our menu during hectic times allows me to prepare other meals and snacks when I do have time.” For healthy comfort food, Dinners Delivered provides ready-to-eat, family-friendly meals throughout Buncombe County, which can be a “lifesaver for busy parents, saving time and providing better food choices,” says owner Donald Reeves, who creates healthier versions of both new and traditional recipes, like baked spaghetti, mashed potatoes and enchiladas, many of which were handed down by his mother. Reeves incorporates a variety of local, organic items in his dishes, which are “lower in salt, sugar and fat than in most restaurants,” and packaged in recyclable containers. “There are just so many hours in the day, says Reeves, “And when both parents work and have small children in the house, there is very little time left for cooking good food.” » Mother Earth Produce, www., 275-3500. » Wingbean,, 237-1857. » Dinners Delivered,, 645-8187. Others: » Veg-in-OUT (vegan meal delivery),, 645-3336. » Swallow Soup (homemade soup delivery),, 5055525.


Sophie Westphall feeds a green pea to Carson Janikowski during lunch time at Discover Little Miracles Child Care in Neenah, Wis. The center serves only organic foods to children and tries to keep portions in check. WILLIAM GLASHEEN/GANNETT

Nutrition-centered day care helps shape children’s attitudes about eating By Cheryl Anderson Gannett


wo-year-old Wesley Huisman doesn’t care where his lunch comes from when he’s hungry. He just wants to eat. But with about three-fourths of children ages 2-6 in the United States spending large parts of each day in day care, what young children eat while mom and dad are away should be a big deal to their parents. It certainly is to Huisman’s mother,


Kristi Hill, who has brought the toddler to Amy & Kids Co. Family Child Care in Appleton, Wis., since he was 12 weeks old. “We were very pleased to find that Amy focuses on organic and healthy foods,” said Hill, who feeds her son those same foods at home. A study of child care programs in Wisconsin and Minnesota recently found that many children learn food and nutrition attitudes and preferences in child care. Good habits, they discovered, start early. “The schools have to start out with one hand tied behind their backs when a child

starts school already thinking that Pop Tarts are breakfast and that pop is what you drink at lunch,” said Susan Nitzke, cooperative extension nutrition specialist and professor emerita at the University of Wisconsin. Nitzke and colleague Dave Riley, an expert on child development and early education for Cooperative Extension and a professor at the University of WisconsinMadison, wrote “Rethinking Nutrition: Connecting Science and Practice in Early

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Continues on Page 26



Kids’ eating habits Continued from Page 24

Childhood Settings.” The book combines the science of childhood nutrition and the practices of good child-care programs that affect a child’s nutrition and development. Nearly a quarter of U.S. children between the ages of 2-5 are overweight or obese. The rate is 17 percent for all children and adolescents in the country — triple the rate from one generation ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Federal help

Nutrition is a big piece of the pie at Faith Child Care. The nondenominational Christian center, which has been operating for 23 years, averages about 67 children ages 6 weeks to 11 in the summer. Kids are served breakfast, lunch and an afternoon snack as part of the Children and Adult Care Food Program, a federal program that provides more than 3.2 million children and 112,000 adults with nutritious meals and snacks each day and reimburses participating day care centers for


meal costs. Most child care providers in the country are part of this program. “We get audited every couple years,” said Faith Child Care’s administrative director, Sandy Amundson. “And at the end of each month, they look at our menus. We need to track point of service where every classroom that serves meals has to count the number of children that are there for that particular meal.” Faith Child Care offers fresh fruit and vegetables, and whole grain and whole wheat products. It tries to steer clear of processed foods. The center’s staff implemented Tasty Tuesdays to introduce healthier foods — such as hummus and yogurt-type dips — to children. Older kids tend a garden, where they grow cucumbers, cherry tomatoes and other veggies. Amy Nogar, who has operated Amy & Kids Co. Family Child Care from her Appleton home since October 1999, cares for seven children ages newborn to 5, including Huisman. She offers a mix of fresh foods and organic items, when she can, and determines the child care center’s menu based on what’s nutritious. “For me, we’re (also) trying to do more with our family nutrition so it’s important

Levi Weyenberg helps himself to a serving of oranges during lunch at Discover Little Miracles Child Care in Neenah, Wis. The day care is proactive in providing kids with healthy foods by serving fresh fruits, vegetables as well as organic. WILLIAM GLASHEEN/GANNETT

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» About 17 percent (or 12.5 million) children and adolescents ages 2 to 19 are obese. » Since 1980, obesity prevalence among children and adolescents has almost tripled. » One in seven low-income, preschoolage children are obese.

» Show by example by eating vegetables, fruits and whole grains with meals or as snacks. » Go food shopping together, which can teach children about food and nutrition. » Get creative in the kitchen. » Offer the same foods for everyone in the family and stop being a “short-order cook.” » Reward children with attention, not food. » Focus on each other at the table, and try to

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

that I incorporate that also in the day care, ” Nogar said. “We’re going with whole grains. We’re trying to avoid high-fructose corn syrup and hydrogenated fats. And serve a lot of veggies.” Huisman’s mother says her son is a healthier child because of the food he consumes at Amy & Kids, and the entire family pays more attention to nutrition because of Nogar’s efforts. “Since going to Amy we’re even healthier because she’s introducing foods that my husband and I have gotten in the habit of not serving,” Hill said.

Only organic Mike Kesselhon, who owns Discover Little Miracles Child Care in Neenah, Wis., with his wife, Roxane, serves only organic food to children enrolled at the center. “We wanted to work with the kids in our center to develop the lifelong habit of not only eating organic foods and clean foods, but portioning the correct way and not overfeeding them,” Kesselhorn said. What’s been surprising, Kesselhon said, is the kids — ages 6 weeks to 12 years — are eating it up.


make eating meals a stress-free time. » Listen to your children when they say they are hungry, and offer choices when it comes to meals. » Limit TV or computer screen time to no more than two hours a day. » Encourage physical activity. » Try new foods yourself and then describe them to your kids.

Source: U.S. Department of Agriculture

“You would be surprised, if you go at it with the right attitude and promote it with the kids, they will try it and we usually end up with a winner.” Kesselhon said the added cost of organic food is palatable. The monthly food bill at Discover Little Miracles is about $3,500. Without buying organic food, the center might save $750, he estimated. “We don’t feel that’s a big enough number to warrant not doing it. In other words, we’re willing to absorb the cost of that against our bottom line for the benefit of the children.”


contradictions of parenting, up close


By Sharon Jayson, USA TODAY


high-profile feminist and founder of the website, Jessica Valenti is married and the mother of a 2-year-old. Valenti, 33, of Boston, spoke with USA TODAY about her new book “Why Have Kids?”, which focuses on the disconnect between expectations of parenting as pure joy vs. daily reality, which isn’t so easy. She raises provocative questions, including whether to parent at all.

Question: In the book, you say that “Five times as many parenting advice books were published in 1997 as were in 1975. An industry built itself around a nation of parental worriers.” You have a new parenting book. Aren’t you part of this industry now? Answer: I hope I’m not part of that industry. I’m kind of considering it an antiparenting book. I am not doling out parenting advice. I’m not trying to make anyone worry about anything. My hope is that it will open up a conversation and ask questions about this framework of idealistic parenting that has been set before us that I think is pretty damaging and unrealistic. Q: What’s the problem? A: I think that the ideal of parenting can make people unhappy. It’s this lie that they’re being told by society that parenting is one thing — and when parenting is something completely different — that’s what makes them unhappy. When you ask most American parents why they want to have kids, it’s to bring more joy into their lives. So, when you don’t feel that all-encompassing joy, it must be that something is wrong with you. I think it’s dissatisfaction that the expectation was different than the reality. Q: You say we need to stop talking about parenting as the default rather than a deliberate choice. Is it still that way? A: It’s becoming less so, but I think it’s very much the default — just the way in which women’s health care is centered around the idea that one day they’ll become pregnant. From policy to culture, the assumption is that everyone — women in particular — will become parents. Parenting is still being considered the default rather than a proactive decision. Q: Your book notes that after a baby arrives, once-egalitarian marriages become



more traditional. How have you and your husband — both feminists — counteracted this? A: It’s been a struggle. In the beginning, the attitude was “We’re feminists, let’s just let things take our natural course and everything will be fine.” But that’s not usually how it happens. The default assumption should be that you are both the caregiver — not that mom is the primary caregiver and dad is going to help out. I also think it’s a matter of letting go of control. Women are brought up to believe you are going to be the better parent and you know what’s best. I don’t think that’s necessarily true. As much as we have to ask men to step it up, we have to take a look at ourselves and be willing to give up some of that parental power. Q: You say that we should focus on raising our children as a community exercise. That’s a throwback to the “it takes a village” idea that got attention in the 1990s. Have we gotten away from it? What should

we do to refocus to the community approach? A: We’ve definitely gotten away from the idea. It seems to me that culturally what’s considered the best thing for a child is the one parent — preferably mom — to be at home raising them. That’s about as far away from community as you can get. I don’t think that’s a great model for parenting or for women’s lives. I think it’s better for children to have multiple caregivers and be a part of a community. We’re in a society that says day care is fine if that’s all you can do — like the optimal choice is never considered day care. I think day care is terrific. Kids get to be around other kids and they’re playing and they’re teaching each other. When I was in college, my summer job was being a preschool teacher. I loved it, and after that experience, I said I can’t wait to put my kid in day care because I could see how much they loved it. I do think we also need to reframe day care as a good choice and not the last available choice. Q: You went to your first feminist march as a kid. How are you parenting Layla with this in mind? A: I don’t think I’m going to be forcing her to read any feminist theory or anything. I think the more you try to pressure kids to do things, the more they rebel anyway. In terms of toys and things like that, we do try to make sure she has a little bit of everything so she can kind of tell us what she’d like to do, even if that means sparkly tiaras.

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Tooth Fairy survey: $3 goes under the pillow By Oliver St. John USA TODAY

The Tooth Fairy is starting to look a lot more like Santa Claus. Kids found an average $3 per tooth under their pillows this year, up 15 percent from last year, according to a survey from Visa out in September. Some received as much as $20 per tooth. “It’s a good time to be a kid with a loose tooth,” says Jason Alderman, Visa’s senior director of global financial education. The Tooth Fairy is not to be taken lightly, child psychologists warn: Excessive monetary rewards can distort a child’s perception of money. “I believe that it not only can be adverse to learning the values of things, but it can also be adverse to learning you earned things,” says Patricia Kirwin, a psychologist in Columbus, Ohio. Unfortunately, teachers say, tooth inflation is all too common in elementary schools. Nobody wants to be the parent whose child is “the talk at recess,” because of a frugal Tooth Fairy, says Amy Moncarz, a second-grade teacher at Lucy V. Barnsley Elementary School in Rockville, Md. Discrepancies in tooth price can lead to a conversation parents might want to avoid: the existence of the Tooth Fairy itself. To help parents calculate the going rate for teeth, Visa launched an app for iPhone and iPad and a calculator on its Facebook page. The app uses the survey’s data to determine the average payoff a child can expect based on a parent’s gender, education, location, age and income. The app also shows how much the recommended dollar amount was worth when the parent was 8. Kate Wagner, whose daughter, Emily, 5, lost five teeth this summer, says a toothpricing app would be helpful. She and her husband settled on a buck a tooth — what they received as kids. While the app aims to promote fiscal responsibility in kids, financial gurus say it may encourage parents to try to outdo one another. “The app would be a driver of tooth inflation, not a tracker,” says Charles Green, CEO of Trusted Advisor Associates, a management consultant. “I would predict a psychological bidding game.”




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Kids’ voices

Where in the world

As the emphasis on global education grows, we asked second-graders in Ali Mellander’s class at ArtSpace Charter School to tell us which one place in the world they would visit and why. Here are some responses: “One place in the world I would love to visit is New York because I go inside the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building.” Lawson , 7

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Ireland because my dog is from Ireland. Her birthday is on St. Patrick’s Day because it’s very green. She is a wheaten terrier.” Skye, 8

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Madagascar because I saw the movie and I want to see zebras and lemurs and lions. I imagine it is hot and beautiful. I have never been there before. One day I hope to visit Madagascar.” Olivia , 7

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Iceland. I think it’s cool there because the sun never goes down. Kids can play outside all day and all night. It is freezing.” Logan , 7

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Ireland. I want to go and see the ancient ruins. I want to go look for leprechauns. I want to see Tara, the castle of all Ireland.” Finn , 7

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Florida. I’ve never been there. I imagine lots of pools and houses and streets and sticks, but I bet it is mostly pretty. I want to go to Disney World. I would love to go to the beach!” Milla , 7

“I would like to visit New York City because the big Christmas tree is beautiful at Christmas and in the night. I would love to go skating at Rockefeller Center and I would like to see the big fountain.” Kendall , 7

“I want to go to Thailand because I was named by the word ‘peace.’ I’ve been there five times. My cousins live in Thailand. There are monks in Thailand.” Santhi , 7

“One place in the world I would love to visit is Montana because my name is Montana. I am named after the state Montana. I know where it is. It has a bunch of mountains.” Montana , 7



Family-friendly fall events

Through October

Marion. Visit TRYON ARTS AND CRAFTS FALL FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 13, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Tryon Arts and Crafts School, 373 Harmon Field Road, Tryon. 40 artisans, demonstrations, kids activities. Free admission but donations accepted. 859-8323 or

HICKORY NUT GAP FARM: Visit the Fairview farm from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. daily this fall. Try the maze, pick a pumpkin, buy organic apples, hold a baby chick, visit with animals and more. $7 adults, $5 children 3 and older, free for 2 and younger. Admission covers all farm activities for the day. Bring lunch or buy it here and picnic in the shade of the sycamore. Visit

Oct. 13-14

OKTOBERFEST: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sugar Mountain Resort, 1009 Sugar Mountain Drive, Banner Elk. Bavarian music, German and American food, lift rides, children’s fun center, hay rides, craft fair, winter sports shop sale, performances by Avery Smooth Dancers & Mountain Laurel Cloggers. Free admission and parking.

Sept. 28-Oct. 27

GHOST TRAIN: Tweetsie Railroad’s 23rd annual celebration, Fridays and Saturdays through Oct. 27. After dark, see Halloween characters and Ghost Train engineer Casey Bones, visit the haunted house, go trick-or-treating. Visit

Sept. 29

MOUNTAIN HERITAGE DAY: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Western Carolina University, Cullowhee. Celebrating traditional Appalachian culture. 5K race 8 a.m. from McKee Building. Visit Call 586-4009 or 227-7129 or visit SMOKIN BBQ AND BLUEGRASS FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-6 p.m. at Cold Mountain Corn Maize, Canton. More than 10 teams compete for barbecue prizes, live music and more. Visit or call 648-8575.

Sept. 29-30

FLOCK TO THE ROCK: Learn about the birds of Chimney Rock. Weekend of birding events including guided walks, workshops ranging from bird photography to hummingbirds, hawk watches, family nature walks and kids activities. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 29 and 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 30. Free with admission. Visit

Sept. 30

JCC CRAFT FAIR: 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Asheville Jewish Community Center, 236 Charlotte St. All local vendors. Free admission. Call 253-0701 or visit

Oct. 2-6

100th ANNUAL INDIAN FAIR: Cherokee Indian Fair Grounds, U.S. 441, Cherokee. Entertainment, midway games, food, traditional and contemporary arts and crafts. Visit

Oct. 6

FALL BY THE TRACKS: 10 a.m.-2 p.m. in Black Mountain. Old Depot Association hosts 15th annual festival. Fall by the Tracks 5K starts at 10 a.m. With local arts, crafts and festivities in a family-friendly setting. Visit FARM CITY DAY: 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Jackson Park, Hendersonville. Antique and modern farm equipment, music, square dancing, clogging, food, petting zoo, more. Visit GREAT PUMPKIN PATCH EXPRESS: Weekends starting Oct. 6, Great Smoky Mountain Railroad’s Bryson City depot. Meet the Peanuts characters, select a pumpkin, hay rides, live music, storytelling, more. Wear costumes and trick-or-treat. Ticket prices include admission to model trains museum. Starting Oct. 6, train rides 3 p.m. Fridays (starting Oct. 12), 11:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. $53, $31 age 2-12. Visit or call 488-7000 or 800-872-4681.


Oct. 18-21

Lev Goldstein, left, and Samuel Goldstein perform with The Goldstein Family Band during HardLox, Asheville’s Jewish Food & Heritage Festival, in downtown Asheville last year. This year’s event is Oct. 21. JOHN FLETCHER/JFLETCHER@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM

HEY DAY: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at WNC Nature Center, 75 Gashes Creek Road, Asheville. The 36th annual fall family festival with games, crafts, music, animals and more. $8, $4 age 3-15, $7 age 65 and older. Call 298-5600 or visit LUNSFORD FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-4 p.m., Mars Hill College. Honoring Bascom Lamar Lunsford and the music and dance traditions of the region. Games, music, dancing, demonstrations, workshops, silent auction. Free. 7 p.m. concert in Moore Auditorium is $10, $5 age 12 and younger.

Oct. 6-7

JOHN C. CAMPBELL FOLK SCHOOL FALL FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at the school in Brasstown. $5, $3 age 12-17, free age 11 and younger. Crafts, demonstrations, kids activities, music, dancing. LAND OF OZ: 9:30 a.m.-5:30 p.m. with trips at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. at Beech Mountain Resort, Banner Elk. Tour the old Land of Oz theme park. Take chairlift or motor coach to mountaintop to meet Dorothy, visit museum, tour Dorothy’s house, stroll yellow brick road. Music, games, food, craft vendors. $20 advance, $25 at gate, free ages 2 and younger. No wheelchairs or large strollers. Ticket designates time you will be transported to Oz from resort. 800-468-5506 or

Oct. 12-14, 19-21 & 26-28:

STINGY JACKS PUMPKIN PATCH: Fall festival featuring Stingy’s Illuminated Pumpkin Trail created by local artists out of pumpkins that light up when the sun goes down. At Mountains & Meadows Events Center at Turkey Pen, 324 McGuire Road, Pisgah Forest. Visit

Oct. 13

MINERAL CITY HERITAGE FESTIVAL: Food, crafts, children’s activities and more, Spruce Pine. Visit MOUNTAIN GLORY FESTIVAL: Street festival with arts and crafts, food, quilt show, children’s area, more. In

CRAFT FAIR OF THE SOUTHER HIGHLANDS: 10 a.m.-5 p.m., U.S. Cellular Center, 87 Haywood St., Asheville. Crafters from around Appalachia show and sell their work. $8, free to ages 11 and younger. 298-7928. LAKE EDEN ARTS FESTIVAL: Weekend of art, music and outdoor fun at Camp Rockmont in Black Mountain. Visit

Oct. 19-20

PUMPKINFEST: 3-6 p.m. Oct. 19 and all day Oct. 20, Franklin. Hayrides, trick-or-treating, a pumpkin roll, more. Call 524-2516 or visit

Oct. 20

APPLE HARVEST FESTIVAL: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. in downtown Waynesville. The 24th annual event with arts, crafts, entertainment, food and apples. Visit HALLOWEEN CARNIVAL: 3-5 p.m., Kate’s Park, Hendersonville Road, Fletcher. For kids 11 and younger. Games, face painting, prizes and costume contest. Please bring nonperishable food item for donation. Call 6870751 or visit

Oct. 20-21

WOOLLY WORM FESTIVAL: 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Oct. 20 and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Oct. 21, downtown Banner Elk. Celebrate the coming of the snow season in the High Country. Arts and crafts, music, food, the woolly worm races and more. Visit or call 898-5605.

Oct. 21

HARDLOX: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Pack Square Park, downtown Asheville. Jewish food and heritage festival, with traditional music and dance, crafts, food, children’s activities. Visit

Oct. 25-27

FALL HARVEST DAYS: Crafters, demonstrations, farm tools, antique engines, antique tractor pulls, more. At WNC Agricultural Center. $8 per day, children under 12 free with paid adult. Visit

Oct. 27

BEARY SCARY HALLOWEEN: 10 a.m.-3 p.m. at Grandfather Mountain, Linville. Crafts, nature program, costume contest and more. Visit

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HALLOWEEN CARNIVAL: 6-7:30 p.m., Carver Community Center, Black Mountain. Candy, carnival games, magician, bounce house, crafts, food, more. Toddlers to age 10, costume optional. Free. Visit HALLOWEENFEST: 10 a.m.-6 p.m., downtown Brevard. Tiny Tot Pumpkin Bowl, cookie decorating, face and hair painting, ghoulish golf, inflatables, costume parade, hay maze, trick-or-treat, pumpkin patch. Flight of the Vampire 5/10K Run & Walk starts at 8 a.m. Call 884-3278 or visit HAUNTED LAGOON: 1-3 p.m. at Zeugner Center, behind Roberson High School, Arden. Face painting, costume contest at 1:30 p.m., swimming, trick-or-treat. Pool opens at 2 p.m. Admission is can of food for MANNA FoodBank; $2 for swimmers. Call 684-5072 or visit HOWL-O-WEEN: 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at WNC Nature Center, 75 Gashes Creek Road, Asheville. Games, presentations, crafts, more. Visit or call 259-8080. PUNKIN FEST: 4-7 p.m., Dillsboro Town Hall, Front Street. Costume contest and parade and trick-or-treating in downtown. Visit

Oct. 31

FALL FAMILY FESTIVAL: 5:30-8 p.m., First Baptist Church of Asheville, 5 Oak St. Free and open to the community. Pony rides, inflatables, prizes, games, face painting, conceessions, preschool area and more. Rain or shine. Visit or call 252-4781. HOOPLA: 5:30-8:30 p.m., Biltmore Baptist Church, 35 Clayton Road, Arden, and East Campus, 74 Riverwood Road, Swannanoa. Games, prizes, food, inflatables, more. Free, Visit TRICK-OR-TREAT STREET: 4:30-7:30 p.m. at Main Street gazebo, downtown Hendersonville. Costume contest for children and pets, Monster Mash entertainment. TRUNK OR TREAT: 3-5 p.m., First Presbyterian Church of Swannanoa, 372 Bee Tree Road. With treats and face painting. Call 686-3140.

Corn mazes

BLUE RIDGE CORN MAZE: Six-acre maze at 1605 Everett Road, Pisgah Forest. Times by appointment, Monday-Friday; 2-8 p.m. Saturday-Sunday. $7 for ages 13 and up, $5 for ages 6-12, free for 5 and under. Group rates. Visit or call 2260508. COLD MOUNTAIN CORN MAIZE: 4168 Pisgah Drive, along N.C. 110, south of Canton. Open 4-9 p.m. Wednesday-Friday and 1-9 p.m. Saturday-Sunday through Nov. 1. $8 for ages 4 and older. Haunted maze opens Oct. 1. Group rates. Call 648-8575 or visit ELIADA FIELDS OF FUN MAZE: Twisting trails, with a small storybook trail with the story of Spookley the Square Pumpkin, at 2 Compton Drive, Asheville. Open through Oct. 28. Visit HICKORY NUT GAP FARM: Visit the Fairview farm from 9 a.m.-6 p.m. daily through October. Corn maze and more. $7 adults, $5 children 3 and older, free for 2 and younger. Admission covers all farm activities for the day. Visit TAYLOR RANCHFEST AND PINK CORN MAZE: Weekends in October, 4-11 p.m. Fridays, 10 a.m.-11 p.m. Saturdays and 11 a.m.-9 p.m. Sundays, plus Oct. 29-31. The 500-acre ranch opens to the public for the first time to raise funds for local cancer care in partnership with Mission Hospital. With Haunted Mountain Rail, pink corn maze, live local music, seed jump, game field, pumpkin patch, hayrides and more. $12 gate, $10 online/advance for adults, $8/$6 for kids 10 and younger, kids 2 and younger free. Bring a flashlight at night.



Fian Arroyo, right, loves decorating his house (and family) for Halloween. His fellow conspirators are daughter Devyn, left, wife Lisa, son Aydan, lower left, and nephew Joshua Lawrence. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

MAKE A PRODUCTION OUT OF By Paul Clark, WNC Parent contributor


very child’s trip to Weaverville on Halloween seems to pass the spooky corner of College Street and Central Avenue. Kids and their parents pack the streets to get a sight of what Fian Arroyo and his neighbors have done this year. “This is like Halloween central,” said Arroyo, a book and game illustrator whose family stages a Halloween tableau in his yard worthy of an opera set. He and his neighbors go in big to make Halloween as


visual and memorable as possible in their part of town. And they’re not alone. Halloween is the second-biggest holiday in the country for outdoor decorations, according to the National Retail Federation. Half of the 9,374 people polled as part of its Halloween Consumer Intentions and Actions Survey last year said they would decorate their home/yard. The average amount that they spent in 2010 for things like life-size skeletons and large

inflatable pumpkins was $19.79. Arroyo buys some of what he and his family put out at Halloween. They have a big, inflatable spider that was the central prop for their extravaganza last year. But he makes much of what the family uses to spook the kids lined up at their door for treats. Walking in his basement, he looked into bin after bin of Halloween props — tombstones, plastic hands and much more. He

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found some spiders he’d used before, made from milk jugs that he covered in black and orange duct tape. He made the eyes out of plastic Easter eggs into which he inserted glowing, battery-operated lights. His wife, Lisa, placed the spiders in the huge web she made from the front of the house to a big tree in the yard. The kids, seeking treats, had to walk right by. “One year my wife dressed up (as) the spider’s mistress,” Arroyo said, “and I was dressed up like a fly with string all around me, like I was a victim. We had a soundtrack of creaking sounds and screams.” Arroyo’s father-in-law put on a scary mask and, when kids walked up to the door, stood inside shaking a noisemaker that raised all kinds of racket. “The kids ran away screaming,” Arroyo said, laughing. He told his father-in-law to pipe down when the kids walking up to the door were really young. “I tell him, don’t do it, this is a little one,” he said. Arroyo’s voice rose excitedly as he talked about the family’s plans for this year. “The spider is cool, but we’re thinking about something else to add to it. Maybe a giant, blow-up cat,” he said. “If we do the cat thing, we’ll dress up as mice, like we’re the cat’s victims.” “Another thing,” he said. “My neighbor Rob Mangum (an acclaimed potter) showed me how to carve those big jack-olanterns, so of course we have one of those in the front yard. But we also have this big wreath of jack-’o’-lanterns that we hang around the front door. There’s about 20 on them on it; they’re about 8 inches in diameter. “And that giant (inflatable) spider is probably 15 feet high. People can walk under it. Kids like it — they’re afraid of it, or they try to punch it. I’m like, hey kid, don’t do that, you’re going to pop it.” Across the street, the Arroyos’ neighbors have dressed up as Woody and other characters in “Toy Story” and have shown the movie on a big screen they’d rigged up in their front yard. “And Rob,” Arroyo said of Mangum, “he doesn’t dress up, but he put fangs in his mouth.” Arroyo’s roadside attraction, set among other houses that go all out for the holiday, brings in lots of kids — close to 1,000 last year. He knows that because his family gave out glow sticks, which come so many to a pack, making the tallying easy. One year they gave out silly bands. “With something like that, you’re always saying ‘Hey dude, I just saw you five minutes ago,’” he said.




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These scary sweets take the cupcake By Karen Fernau The Arizona Republic


omemade Halloween treats once were limited to knobby popcorn balls and gooey candy apples. Today’s inventory includes the newest holiday must-have — cupcakes hand-decorated with designs spooky enough to scream over. Yes, some are topped with Charlie Brown pumpkins, but most celebrate the dark side of Halloween by showcasing body parts seldom seen on dessert platters — bones, hearts, brains and eyes. The popularity of these Halloween confections proves that our decade-old love affair


Basic Halloween cupcake 1/4 cup, plus 2 tablespoons canola oil 1/2 cup sugar 1/4 cup brown sugar 3/4 teaspoon sea salt 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 1/2 cup sour cream 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cocoa powder 1 large egg 3/4 cup all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1/4 cup hot brewed coffee 1/2 teaspoon baking soda 3/4 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

Heat oven to 350 degrees. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer with paddle attachment or a standard handheld mixer and large mixing bowl, add oil, sugar, brown sugar, salt, vanilla and sour cream. In a small bowl, sift cocoa powder and add to wet ingredients. Mix on low speed for 30 seconds. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl with a rubber spatula, add the egg and mix on medium speed for 20 seconds. In a small bowl, sift flour and baking powder and add to wet ingredient mixture. Mix on low speed until incorporated. Scrape sides and bottom of the bowl and turn mixer on low speed. While mixing, slowly pour

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in coffee until incorporated. With the mixer off, add baking soda and follow with vinegar. Expect immediate bubbling. Mix on medium speed for 5 seconds. Finally, scrape sides and bottom of the bowl one last time to be sure all ingredients are fully incorporated. Fill standard cupcake liners two-thirds full with batter and bake for 10 minutes, then rotate pan 180 degrees. Bake 10 minutes more. Oven heat and times may vary, so bake until chocolate-cake top is no longer wet and a toothpick inserted in the middle comes out clean. Cool cupcakes completely. Makes 15 cupcakes. Source: Brady Breese of Urban Cookies & OllieCake, Phoenix

with cupcakes that caught fire when “Sex and the City” popularized New York City’s Magnolia Bakery shows no signs of tapering off. “Cupcakes aren’t going away because they are a treat just for you, one that makes you feel special. And they make holidays like Halloween a lot more fun,” said Brady Breese, co-owner of Urban Cookies in Phoenix and winner with baker Sal Garcia of Food Network’s “Cupcake Wars” in August. “Who doesn’t like a cupcake that looks like a friendly ghost?” Urban, a midtown Phoenix bakery, began selling cupcakes about 18 months ago, and now sells nearly 10,000 a week. Sales also are brisk of Halloween-colored cupcake papers, chocolate molds for eyeballs, fondant brains and other decorating accessories, according to Pattie Durkin, manager of ABC Cake Decorating Supplies in Phoenix. Customers began requesting Halloween items in July, but ABC waited until late September to begin selling holiday items or risk selling out before the holiday. “This is the one holiday where the cupcakes aren’t cute or pretty, and people Continues on Page 40



Scary sweets Continued from Page 39

really love scary,� Durkin said. Garcia recommends baking cupcakes from scratch, using the best possible ingredients to guarantee that the cupcakes taste as good as they look. As for the decorative toppings, opt for edible. Use chocolate-covered pomegranate seeds for the eyes of a ghost, candy for spider legs. Crumble cookies for graveyard dirt and slice chives for grass. Along with making holiday gifts, they double as table centerpieces for Halloween parties. Many are easy for kids to make, or at least help bake and decorate.

Ghoulish ghost cupcakes Basic Halloween cupcakes (see recipe) Cream cheese frosting: 8 ounces or 1 cup salted butter, room temperature (recommended: European style) 8 ounces cream cheese or 1 cup, chilled 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract 4 cups powdered sugar

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer with paddle attachment or a standard handheld mixer and medium mixing bowl, whip butter on medium speed for 30 seconds. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula. Add cream cheese and vanilla and mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. In a small bowl, sift the powdered sugar. Add the sugar to the wet ingredients and mix on low speed until incorporated. Finally, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl again and mix on medium-high speed until mixture looks light and fluffy. Makes about 3 cups. Decorations 45 dark chocolate-covered pomegranate seeds for ghost’s eyes and mouth

Place frosting in a piping bag with a round tip or in a large plastic bag. Snip onehalf inch off the corner of the plastic bag. Begin piping the frosting onto each cupcake by first creating a large dollop in the center of each cake. Pipe frosting in a circular fashion around the dollop and reaching out to the edges of the cake. Continue in a circle with your largest circle at the base and your smallest circle at the top. Add two eyes and a mouth using the chocolate-covered pomegranate seeds. Refrigerate cupcakes until ready to enjoy to avoid falling and drooping of the frosting. Repeat for each cupcake. Source: Brady Breese of Urban Cookies & OllieCake, Phoenix


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Spooky spider cupcakes Basic Halloween cupcakes (see recipe) Chocolate buttercream frosting (see recipe) Decorations Chocolate shards for spider’s back, recipe follows or purchase store-bought chocolate sprinkles instead 30 red raspberries for spider’s eyes 30 chocolate sunflower-seed drops in yellow for spider’s teeth 12 apple wild-berry fruit chews for spider’s legs Chocolate shards 4 ounces dark chocolate (60 percent to 72 percent cacao)

with paddle attachment or a standard handheld mixer and medium mixing bowl, whip powdered sugar and egg whites until consistency resembles toothpaste. Set aside. Begin by creating the headstones. For each headstone, shorten by breaking off one-third of the end of each bistro biscuit. Use discarded pieces for soil pathway by crushing them into fine crumbs. Reserve. With a butter knife or spatula, spread royal icing onto underside, or flat side, of the bistro biscuits. Work quickly as frosting hardens quickly. Lay frosted biscuits, unfrosted side down, on parchment or wax paper to allow frosting to harden. Next, to remaining royal icing add 1 teaspoon of cocoa powder to tint it brown. To add “RIP” to the frosted headstones, place frosting in a small plastic food storage bag. Snip a very small tip off the corner of the plastic bag, write “RIP” on the front of each headstone and allow to dry. Now, with a butter knife or spatula, spread chocolate frosting over each cupcake. Then place the bottom of each headstone into one end of each cupcake until steady. Finally, spread the reserved biscuit crumbs onto each cupcake by starting at the base of each headstone and working in a straight line from there to the other side of the cupcake. This will create the dirt mound. Cut each sprig of chives into one-half inch and 1-inch pieces and place into cupcake along the sides of the dirt mound. Sprinkle dirt mound with a few sunflower seeds. Repeat with each cupcake.

Tear off two 14-inch pieces of parchment or wax paper and set aside. In a double boiler, melt chocolate. If you don’t have a double boiler, fill a small- to medium-sized pot with 2 inches of water. Then, place a heatproof bowl, with a diameter larger than the pot, on top. Make sure the bowl is large enough not to fall into the pot or touch the water. Place chocolate in the bowl and place the pot and bowl on the stovetop over medium heat. This will create steam, which will melt the chocolate. With a rubber spatula, stir the chocolate frequently until it’s smooth. Remove from heat and carefully pour the melted chocolate onto one of the sheets of paper. With a rubber spatula, spread a thin, even layer of chocolate across the paper, about a ½-inch from each edge. Cover the chocolate with the second sheet of paper. Starting at one of the short edges of the paper, hold both sheets and roll into a tube. Place in the freezer on a flat surface for 45 minutes. Remove and unroll tube. As you unroll, the chocolate will crack into shards. Peel back the top sheet of paper. To remove chocolate shards from the second sheet of paper, gently slide a spatula under the shards. Store on a plate or baking sheet in the freezer until ready to decorate cupcakes. With a butter knife or spatula, spread frosting over each cupcake. Next, create the spider’s legs by cutting each fruit chew lengthwise to create 8 long strips. Then cut one-third off each strip and begin inserting one end of each strip into the rim of the cupcake -- three legs per side. After all legs are inserted, bend each leg at its insertion point to get it to point down. Now, place the two raspberries on an opposite end from the legs and within the frosting so the eyes will stay in place. Under the eyes, place two yellow sunflower seeds to create the spider’s teeth. Finally, remove the chocolate shards from the freezer and place pieces in a layered fashion, covering the surface of the frosted cupcake. Work quickly to keep the shards melting in your hands. If using store-bought chocolate sprinkles, just generously sprinkle each spider. Repeat for each cupcake.

Source: Brady Breese of Urban Cookies & OllieCake, Phoenix

Source: Brady Breese of Urban Cookies & OllieCake, Phoenix


Ghastly graveyard cupcakes Basic Halloween cupcakes (see recipe) Chocolate buttercream frosting: 16 ounces or 1 pound unsalted butter, room temperature (recommended European style) 1 cup cocoa powder, sifted 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract 3 cups powdered sugar 1/4 cup heavy cream

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer with paddle attachment or a standard handheld mixer and medium mixing bowl, whip butter on medium speed for 30 seconds. Scrape sides and bottom of bowl with a rubber spatula. Add cocoa, salt and vanilla and mix on medium speed for 1 minute. Scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl. In a small bowl, sift the powdered sugar. Add the sugar to the wet ingredients, as well as the heavy cream, and mix on low speed until incorporated. Finally, scrape the sides and bottom of the bowl again and mix on medium-high speed until mixture looks light and smooth. Makes about 3 cups.

Decorations: 15 bistro biscuits with royal icing for headstones and dirt mounds, recipe follows 30 chive sprigs for graveyard grass Sunflower seeds to sprinkle on dirt mound Headstone royal icing: 4 cups powdered sugar 2 egg whites

In the bowl of an electric stand mixer



artist’s muse


Mapping explorations By Ginger Huebner WNC Parent columnist

Maps have always caught my attention. They are full of text, facts, symbols and imagery that have the potential to take you into another world. It is always wonderful to trace your finger along a pathway that you have walked, driven or flown; and then share the story of the experience with others. A great mapping project to do with children involves finding or printing a map of your local neighborhood or city. You can use Google maps on your computer or go on a hunt to find a printed version of Asheville neighborhood maps. Maps can be found in many places around our city. Study the map(s) with your children: » Compare different types of symbols: roads, landscape, buildings, parks and community buildings » Talk about where you may have walked before » Talk about where you want to go » Plan a path to explore together!


Go for a walk, taking the map with you. Grab your camera and/or a sketchbook to photograph and/or draw things along the way. Circle, highlight or draw arrows to note the location of the photo or sketch. Challenge yourself and your children to look for unusual objects, landscape details and infrastructure that will be unique memories of this pathway. When you return from your walk, print the photos and/or cut out the drawings. Work together with your children to locate where each photo/drawing can be found on the map. Don’t forget to use your notes from the original map! If you are able to make an enlarged version of the map at your local copy shop, you can glue your images down onto the big map. If not, you could make a small book of your images and bind it with your original copy of the map! Either way, you will have a visual mapping of a path in your own city that now has even more meaning to you and your children. Ginger Huebner is the director of Roots + Wings School of Art, which offers visual art classes for all ages. Email her at or visit

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growing together

Resisting the urge for a do-over By Chris Worthy

WNC Parent columnist

I never got to go to Space Camp. Actually, I don’t think Space Camp existed when I was a kid, but I would have gone as a teenager, college student or full grown adult. Dear NASA, I would have left my kids at home to go to Space Camp for Moms, had you held such a thing. My eldest does not love science. (We don’t allow our kids to say they “hate” something, but OK, she does kind of hate it.) Instead, she enjoys being on a stage and talking in front of crowds. I have no concept of how that is fun. My youngest absorbs science and spits it out like it’s no big thing. Cova-


lent bonds? Mitosis? Meiosis? Piece of cake. And yes, cake is science. I seized upon his interest pretty early and decided I, the liberal arts major, could live vicariously through him, “Toddlers and Tiaras” style — but with a giant centrifuge and freezedried food in a tube. In my defense, the only runway he would to have to walk is the kind they have at Kennedy Space Center. At the ripe old age of 14, my son has declared that space travel isn’t his bag. He is headed for the behind-thescenes engineering side. To prove it, he

is taking an adult-level computer programming course just to get a head start. I am OK with this, having made him swear to get me a visitor’s pass should he ever get in the control room in Houston. (Assuming we still have a space program in 10 years. Sigh.) Sure, our family’s obsessions lean a little — just a little — to the geeky side, but I can see how those reality TV moms fly off the rails. They have an unresolved issue or two, perhaps, and maybe they see their kids’ lives as a chance for a do-over. If those moms had been able to go to

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Space Camp, things might be different. It’s a slippery slope when your child enjoys something about which you are passionate. It’s a chance to nurture them and build fantastic memories. It’s also a chance to screw them up and build resentment. As parents, we get to choose our paths, not theirs. Our children are not us. Heck, they aren’t even ours. Our job is to find balance, to encourage them and give them opportunities to find their gifts. If we can help them grow those gifts, that’s great. If not, we have to find people with the knowledge and skills to do so. We also have to be willing to step back and let our children change and try new things. When they do that, our dreams aren’t dying — theirs are taking shape. Chris Worthy is an attorney who took down her shingle to be a stay-at-home mom. Email her at



divorced families

With little ones during divorce, keep an intentional home

By Trip Woodard WNC Parent columnist

Some people think that one age is better than another when it comes to children adjusting to divorce or separation. The answer is yes, I mean, no. The real answer is clearly murky. It is really not about a child’s age as to how he or she adjusts, but it involves a multitude of factors including the child’s personal resilience, the behavior of the parents, the reaction of the parent’s friends or relatives and changes in physical arrangements like


housing. Toddlers are at a crossroads when it comes to understanding divorce and separation. They have some language skills but limited understanding as to what some words mean. This impacts how they may deal with their feelings about what is going on with their changing family. All they know, using adult language, is that sameness equals “saness.” I think that this can be an especially hard time for parents (it was for me) who have to deal with their own emotional turmoil and still have to be supportive of their child’s needs without being overly clouded with guilt and fear. This is an important time to draw strength from friends and relatives to keep yourself as

steadfast as possible in providing a home environment that is intentional and not reactional. An intentional home life is one in which you strive to maintain similar rules and schedules with your toddler. Ideally, this should match with the other parent, but that depends on his or her level of involvement and your mutual ability to communicate. In this mind frame, you are working toward consistency, reliability and dependability to give your child the best efforts to enable adjustment. A reactional household is one driven by emotional reactions to what you think your child wants instead of what is in his or her best interest over the long haul. This is when parents cave on following

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house rules because of guilt about “what their child is going through” by giving them privileges such as staying up extra late or not give them a consequence for bad behavior. This can especially be a difficult temptation for certain relatives such as grandparents who may be needed because of a parent’s work schedule to assume the role of a primary care giver. So, what are some principles you can follow to grow and maintain an intentional household? » Take care of thyself. To be an optimal parent, you have to do whatever you can to practice proper stress management through how you take care of your body, emotions and spirit. Eat as well as you can, exercise and grow community through friendships. » Establish home schedules on feeding and bedtimes. Have consequences for bad behavior. And make sure that all caregivers to your child are on board as to the rules. » If your child resides between two households, collaborate as best as you can with the other parents concerning schedules and rules. Have a picture of the other parent at each household. Re-


fer to each house as “Daddy’s house” and “Mommy’s house,” which both belong to the child. Make sure your child is aware of the changeover times to the other household and expect the possibility of transition anxiety. » Avoid quizzing your child about events at the other parent’s house. When


activities are freely mentioned, show appropriate support for them. » If your child regresses in behaviors like potty training, tantrums or aggressiveness, try to encourage age-appropriate behaviors without shaming. Consider seeking professional consultation if regressed behaviors become a pattern despite your efforts. » Get additional parenting tactics through such courses as 1, 2, 3 Magic or Love and Logic. These courses may be available in DVD format through your local library, but are often offered through community agencies free of charge. In Buncombe County, call 211 for further information of class times and locations. All in all, remember that your toddler draws strength from you that everything is going to be OK. And I know plenty of adults that still need to hear that same reminder, so please believe me when you hear me say … you really are going to be OK. Trip Woodard is a licensed family and marriage therapist and a clinical member of the N.C. Association of Marriage and Family Therapists. Contact him at 606-8607.


area story times Buncombe County Libraries Visit Black Mountain, 250-4756: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Wednesday; Mother Goose: 11:30 a.m. Tuesday; Toddler: 10:30 a.m. Thursday East Asheville, 250-4738: Preschool: 11 a.m. Wednesday and Saturday Enka-Candler, 250-4758: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Wednesday; Toddler: 10:30 a.m. Thursday Fairview, 250-6484: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Thursday Leicester, 250-6480: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Wednesday North Asheville, 250-4752: Preschool: 11 a.m. Wednesday; Toddler: 10 a.m. Wednesday Oakley/South Asheville, 250-4754: Mother Goose: 11 a.m. Thursday; Toddler: 11 a.m. Wednesday; Preschool: 10 a.m. Wednesday Pack Memorial Library, 250-4700: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Mondays; Mother Goose: 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays; Toddler: 10:30 a.m. Thursdays

Skyland/South Buncombe, 250-6488: Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Thursday; Toddler: 10:30 a.m. Wednesday Swannanoa, 250-6486: Preschool: 11 a.m. Thursday; Toddler: 10 a.m. Thursday Weaverville, 250-6482: Mother Goose: 11 a.m. Wednesday; Toddler: 11 a.m. Thursday; Preschool: 11 a.m. Tuesday West Asheville, 250-4750: Mother Goose: 11 a.m. Monday; Toddler: 11 a.m. Wednesday; Preschool: 11 a.m. Thursday

Haywood County Library

Visit Waynesville, 356-2512 or 356-2511:


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librarian’s pick

A gift of kindness from Cameroon Jennifer Prince Buncombe County Public Libraries

In 1931, America was in the throes of the Great Depression. In the populous city of New York, hunger was a big problem. Men, women and children stood in breadlines to get a little food to line their bellies. Half way around the world in Cameroon, the people of one village decided to help. This is the premise of the new children’s picture book, “My Heart Will Not Sit Down.” Written by Mara Rockliff and illustrated by Ann Tanksley, “My Heart Will Not Sit Down” is based in truth. According to the author’s note, the people of a village in Cameroon did send $3.77 in food relief to New York City. Rockliff takes this incident and fleshes it out into a story that has great heart and warmth. The main character, Kedi, is a little girl who loves going to the school in her village. One day her American teacher describes the harsh economic conditions facing many of his countrymen. Kedi is saddened. Even after she goes home for the day, she cannot stop thinking about what her teacher told her — her heart will not sit down. Kedi asks her mom if they can send any money to America to help. Her mom knows that in their agrarian society

area story times Movers and Shakers: 11 a.m. Thursdays; Ready 4 Learning: 11 a.m. Tuesdays; Family story time: 11 a.m. Wednesdays Canton, 648-2924: Family story time, 11 a.m. Tuesdays; Rompin’ Stompin’ story time, 10 a.m. Thursdays

Henderson County Library

Visit www.henderson. Main, 697-4725: Bouncing Babies: 11 a.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays; Toddler

money is a rarity indeed, so she replies, “We do not have enough coins to pay the head tax, even. How can we send money to people whose faces we have never seen?” Not to be deterred, Kedi walks around the village and asks people if they have money to spare to send to America. As Kedi walks, a vivid portrait of village life unfolds. Kedi asks the uncle “squatting on the ground, weaving a basket out of bushrope vine.” She asks the “grandmother

Time: 10:30 a.m. Wednesdays; Preschool: 10:30 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Edneyville, 685-0110: Family: 10 a.m. Mondays Etowah, 891-6577: Family: 11 a.m. Tuesdays Fletcher, 687-1218: Family: 10 a.m. Wednesdays Green River, 697-4969: Family: 10 a.m. Thursdays Mills River, 890-1850: Familiy: 10 a.m. Mondays


with strong arms pounding the cassava” and “the laughing girls who carried pots of river water balanced on their heads.” She asks everyone. No one has money to spare until one bold gesture of generosity by Kedi’s mother inspires the others in the village to give. The story is told in prose, but its eloquence gives it the ring of poetry. Throughout the text, Rockliff weaves in Cameroon expressions, including “the great salt river” (the Atlantic Ocean) and “the season of burning feet.” The title, “My Heart Will Not Sit Down,” is a Cameroon expression as well. Ann Tanksley’s illustrations were created using watercolor, pen and ink, and oils. Her drawing style is stylized to suggest simplicity. Colors are bright. Liberal use of orange makes vivid the hot climate and near-barren landscape of the African village. Green, used more judiciously, depicts the rare, precious quality of plant life in the village. Thick black outlines around each image add dramatic contrast. “My Heart Will Not Sit Down” is about two things mainly. Kindness is found the world over. Gifts come in all sizes. Those ideas are worth sharing with kids of all ages. This book is available in the Buncombe County Public Libraries. To learn more, visit

Barnes & Noble Asheville Mall, 296-7335: 11 a.m. Mondays and 2 p.m. Saturdays; Biltmore Park Town Square, Asheville, 687-0681: 11 a.m. Saturdays

Blue Ridge Books

152 S. Main St., Waynesville, 456-6000: 10:30 a.m. Mondays, ages 3 and under.

Spellbound Children’s Bookshop

21 Battery Park Ave., Asheville, 232-2228: 10:30-11 a.m. Saturdays, ages 4-7.


Sweet potatoes pack a punch

Sweet potato fries

By Kate Justen WNC Parent columnist

Sweet potatoes are one of those foods that babies love and we, as parents, know they are very nutritious and not likely to cause an allergic reaction. So we feed them to our growing babies on a regular basis. Both of my children started on peas, carrots and sweet potatoes as their first “real” foods. Good habit to get into right? Why is it that now many of the kids we work with say they do not like sweet potatoes? In one of our FEAST classes with middle school students, one of the participants saw the sweet potatoes sitting there and asked if we were having marshmallows today in class. Eating healthy foods is just as important to teenagers and young adults as it is to infants and toddlers. There are some simple ways and some important reasons to keep sweet potatoes a part of your regular diet as you go through life. Sweet potatoes have many health benefits: » Low in calories (90 cal/100 g) and contains no saturated fats and cholesterol, but rich source of dietary fiber, anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals. » They are storehouses of starch, a complex carbohydrate, which raises the blood sugar levels slowly on comparison to simple sugars; recommended even in diabetes. » Excellent source of flavonoids like beta-carotene and vitamin A (provides 14,187 IU of vitamin A and 8,509 mcg of beta carotene). The value is one of the highest in root vegetables category. These compounds are powerful natural antioxidants. Vitamin A is required by the body to


Sweet potato fries

Curried sweet potato soup

1 tablespoon olive oil 1 teaspoon salt 4 small sweet potatoes

Looking for something with a little more kick? Try this soup recipe on a cool night:

3 cups water 2 sweet potatoes, diced 1/2 small onion, diced 2 cloves garlic, crushed 1 tablespoon oil 1 apple, peeled and diced 1 tablespoon fresh ginger, finely grated 2 teaspoons curry powder 2 teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon paprika 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon 1 cup milk (coconut milk) 1 tablespoon sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cut potatoes in long sticks that look like thin French fires, coat with oil and evenly spread on baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt. Bake for 30 minutes. Pan fried sweet potato wedges.

Mashed sweet potatoes 4 small sweet potatoes

Boil sweet potatoes in water until tender. Drain water and mash potatoes Variations: Sweet: add 1 tablespoon butter and 1/2 cup honey, 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (optional) Spicy: add 1 tablespoon butter, 1 tablespoon chipotle peppers and 1/2 teaspoon salt

Fried potatoes 4 small sweet potatoes cut in cubes 1 tablespoon olive oil

Pan fry potatoes in oil on stove top over medium heat for 20 minutes or until tender. Sprinkle with salt or sugar.

maintain integrity of healthy mucus membranes and skin, is a vital nutrient for vision and helps to protect from lung and oral cavity cancers. » Packed with many essential vitamins such as pantothenic acid (vitamin B-5), pyridoxine (vitamin B-6) and thiamin

Combine water and sweet potatoes and bring to a boil. Add apples and cook until tender (about 20 minutes). Sauté onions and garlic in oil on low heat until tender. Add onion, garlic and remaining ingredients to soup, simmer for 5 minutes.

(vitamin B-1), niacin and riboflavin, which are essential in the sense that body requires them from external sources to replenish. These vitamins function as co-factors for various enzymes during metabolism. » Contain good amounts of minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, manganese, and potassium that are essential for body metabolism. Here are some simple sweet potato recipes kids can help with. Kate Justen is the program director of FEAST — Fresh Easy Affordable Sustainable Tasty, a program of Slow Food Asheville. Contact her at or visit

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A crisp season By Michael Knock Gannett


ruit crisp is the very definition of a fall dessert. I know you can just as easily make a crisp out of rhubarb, peaches or blueberries, but I almost never do it. That may be because of how easy a crisp is to make. While I have lots of time to roll out a pie crust in June when school isn’t in session, a crisp is something I can throw together in just more than 90 minutes. And it almost never fails. Because there is no pastry crust, there is no crust to stick to the counter or to my rolling pin. Nor is there a crust to tear as I try and carefully place it over the filling. Don’t get me wrong. Pie is my all-time favorite dessert, but a crisp is a pretty good substitute when time (and my patience) is in short supply. Because I like to stick with the season, my fall crisps feature pears and apples. Both go beautifully with the crumbly, crunchy topping usually associated with a crisp, and both are wonderfully complemented by spices like cinnamon and nutmeg, which I associate with fall. Still, each features something a bit unique. The pear crisp uses candied ginger to give it a little

extra zing. If you’ve never used it, candied ginger looks a bit like a gum drop. It’s a little chewy, but instead of being sweet, it is like a highly concentrated drop of ginger ale. It’s not something you want to eat casually, but here it adds tiny explosions of ginger flavor to the sweet pears. The apple crisp, in contrast, uses a real vanilla bean to heighten the flavor. If you’ve never cooked with a vanilla bean before, be ready for a couple of shocks. First, their price. One bean usually costs a couple of bucks. It’s tough to shell out that kind of money for a brown, leathery flattened bean that barely resembles food. Still, you should do it because the second shock is how good real vanilla tastes in baked goods. It’s amazing. For a recipe for pear crisp with candied ginger and almonds, visit

Vanilla bean apple crisp Because you bake the apples first, there is no chance they’ll come out too hard or chewy. Also, the topping here is different from most crisps in that it contains no oatmeal and no nuts. It’s just sugar, flour, butter and a few spices. It’s simple, but amazing. That’s largely due to the vanilla bean. You don’t use the whole bean here, just the seeds.

1/3 cup sugar 1 vanilla bean, split lengthwise 2 pounds apples (whatever variety you like) peeled, cored and sliced 1 tablespoons flour 1 tablespoon lemon juice Pinch of ground nutmeg For the topping 1 cup flour 2/3 cup sugar 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon Pinch of salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled butter, cut into inch pieces

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place sugar in a large bowl. Using a small sharp knife, slice the vanilla bean in half and scrape the seeds into the sugar. Rub the mixture with your fingertips to distribute the seeds. Add the next four ingredients and toss well. Transfer to 8-inch square glass baking dish. Bake until apples are tender and beginning to turn golden brown, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and stir apples. Blend flour, sugar, cinnamon and salt in the food processor. Add butter and cut in, using on/off turns. Pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. (If you do not have a food processor, you can use a pastry cutter to mix the topping ingredients. Just follow the same procedure you would use in making a pie crust). Sprinkle crumbs over apples, spreading evenly. Bake crisp until topping is golden brown, about 25 minutes. Cool crisp 10 minutes. Serve with vanilla ice cream. Source: Bon Appetit



home-school happenings

Home-schooling as a transition By Nicole McKeon WNC Parent columnist

It’s that time of the year — when I start to hear from moms and dads who are making the decision to homeschool. It got me thinking about the different roads that lead families to home-school. One of the frequent reasons is a child has a learning difference or a disability of some type. Please don’t misinterpret this — I am not saying that all kids who are home-schooled are disabled or differently gifted. Many families home-school from day one because they feel that this is the best way to educate their children for many different reasons. But, let’s face it, home-schooling has its share of kids who come to it after trying traditional school and it not work-


ing. In our family, that’s what happened. We weren’t gung ho home-schoolers. In fact, we really wanted school to work because we felt that our child’s personality type would blossom in a group setting. Unfortunately, this was not the case. Many families decide to home-school because they realize their child is struggling in school because of a learning difference or a hidden disability, such as ADHD, obsessive compulsive disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, auditory processing disorder, or a combination of these. Many parents see the value in working with their children at home, avoiding the labeling and bullying that sometimes occur when a child is in a traditional school setting. I refer to this as “transitional homeschooling” — home-schooling for a period of time until the child is able to advocate for his or herself. Education, like every other field, is constantly changing. With the greater awareness that society has about “hidden disabilities” and the progress we’ve made

in bringing mental and emotional disorders into the light to be de-stigmatized, the traditional school system is empowered to provide the learning aides that many children need to be successful. But, the truth is, teachers are burdened with large classes, predetermined curriculum and often unsupportive parents. Sometimes, this is not the best setting for a struggling child. Transitionally home-schooling your child can be the answer to avoiding a child becoming discouraged and despondent. Sometimes a child will desire to return to school when he or she feels ready; some will remain at home. Either option is good. So, if your child is struggling with a hidden disability or seems to be terribly unhappy in a traditional setting, consider transitionally home-schooling him/her and see where the path leads. Nicole McKeon is a home-schooling mom and owner of Homeschool Station in Fairview. Email her at

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nature center notes

Change of season brings change of habits By Jill Sharp

Special to WNC Parent

Ruby-throated hummingbirds are a common species in WNC during the warmer seasons. In the winter, they often migrate to Central America. SPECIAL TO WNC PARENT

In the fall, there’s something in the air that inspires activity. The chill tells the black bear to start storing up fat for a long sleep. The smell of autumn triggers the white-tailed bucks into rut. The first frosts send the turtles burrowing into the mud. Winter is coming, but there’s a lot to do before it arrives. Some animals are preparing to hibernate, some are storing food, but others are packing their bags. Migration is a great way to deal with the cold — visit someplace warm! Many species of birds in this area are migratory, including some songbirds, water fowl and notably hummingbirds. Ruby-throated hummingbirds are a common species found at feeders and flowers all over Western North Carolina during the warmer seasons. Though hummingbirds eat


nectar, they are also insectivores. When insect populations decrease in the winter, they fly south to the tropics for a season. This tiny bird — weighing around one-eighth of an ounce — travels all the way to Central America and back again in the spring. Unlike the tiny hummingbird, many of our native songbirds that would naturally migrate during the winter now take a different approach. Because of the abundance of feeders, some songbirds remain here for the winter. If you take in your feeders during the winter, keep in mind that many birds that would normally have left to find food have changed their behaviors in response to the readily available seeds. They depend on those feeders in the winter! Before the cold hits, get outside! Come visit the Nature Center, where you can see wild songbirds as well as over 60 other native species of animals.



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Kids’ page




calendar of events

Things to do

Deadline for the November issue is Oct. 10. Submit information to

Sept. 25

IMPROV TROUPE PERFORMANCE: Chris Martin’s Youth Improv Troupe makes its debut performance, 6:30-7:30 p.m. at The Hop, 640 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Visit TALL TALES AND FAIRY TALES: Create your own puppet. Learn to tell stories that have been passed on through many generations using your own puppet as well as the many Hands On! puppets. For ages 7-10. 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. $15 nonmembers/$9 members. Limited spaces. Call to sign up. At Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Call 697-8333 or visit

Sept. 26

BEST OF CRAZY CHEMISTRY: Make the best Crazy Chemistry concoctions, for ages 5-8. $15 nonmembers/$9 members. Limited spaces. Call to sign up. At 10:30 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Call 697-8333 or visit DRUGLESS THERAPY TALK: For ADD, ADHD, dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Free talk about how the brain processes information and how the problems can be permanently corrected in adults and children. Improve the ability to learn, remember and focus. 6:30 p.m. at Earth Fare South, 1856 Hendersonville Road, Asheville. RSVP to 216-4444 or Visit MINISTRY MEALS IN MINUTES: Learn the fundamentals of freezer cooking and take home two meals for your family and others. Participants bring their own ingredients and supplies, posted one week prior. From 9:30-11:30 a.m. at Biltmore Baptist Church, 35 Clayton Road. Child care provided. $5 registration at door. Ongoing bi-monthly event (second and fourth Wednesday) with a different menu each session. Visit for more details and weekly menu. YOM KIPPUR CHILDREN’S PROGRAM: Join the Chabad House for a special fun children’s program during Yom Kippur services. For ages 3-13. 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Asheville JCC, 236 Charlotte St., Asheville. Reservations required. Call 505-0746 or visit

Sept. 27

DRUGLESS THERAPY TALK: For ADD, ADHD, dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Free talk about how the brain processes information and how the problems can be permanently corrected in adults


Instructor Tonna Davis helps Noah Senzon learn to swim during a class at the YWCA of Asheville. A new session of lessons starts Oct. 1. JOHN FLETCHER/JFLETCHER@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM and children. Improve the ability to learn, remember and focus. 6:30 p.m. at Crystal Visions, 5426 Asheville Highway (U.S. 25), Hendersonville. RSVP to 216-4444 or Visit HANGER HALL OPEN HOUSE: Learn more about the school for girls in sixth to eighth grades, 9:3011:30 a.m., at 30 Ben Lippen School Road, Asheville. RSVP to Call 258-3600 or visit INFANT CARE CLASS: Basics including newborn characteristics, feeding, bathing, cord care, diapering and swaddling. Free. 6:30-8 p.m. at Pardee Hospital, 800 N. Justice St., Hendersonville. Registration is required. Call 866-790-WELL or visit to register. INVENTORS: Explore the invention process and be an inventor! $15 nonmembers/$9 members. Limited spaces. Call to sign up. At 10:30 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Call 697-8333 or visit

Sept. 28

BACK TO SCHOOL CARNIVAL: Bell Elementary offers family fun, food, bingo, inflatables, face painting, games, prizes and more. 5-8 p.m. at the school, 90 Maple Springs Road, Asheville. Call 298-3789. LEARNING SPANISH CREATIVELY: Students will learn basic Spanish vocabulary and colors through games, dramatic play, movement, and songs for a four-week series. Thirty-minute class is 11 a.m. Fridays through Oct. 12. Each series will focus on new objectives. Repetition is very important for children to learn a language. Starts Sept. 21; it is recommended students attend all four classes. $35 members/$40 nonmembers for the four classes. Call 697-8333 to register. At Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville.Visit QUILT SHOW: 30th Annual Asheville Quilt Show: Color your Life…with Quilts! See more than 200 quilts from all over the U.S. vying for more than $7,000 in prize money. Demonstrations by nationally known quilters. More than 20 vendors, a silent auction, quilts for sale and Guild gift shop. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Sept. 28-29 and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Sept. 30 at the WNC

Ag Center. Admission $6. Parking is free. WIGGLE WITH WORMS: Learn about worms and make a miniature worm farm to take home. Ages 7-12. $15 nonmembers/$9 members. From 3:30-5 p.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville.Visit WOODFIN YMCA PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Neighborhood Y at Woodfin offers Parents’ Night Out the fourth Friday of each month, 6-9 p.m. Themed nights include healthy snacks, games and crafts. $12 member/$18 nonmember, with $2 sibling discount. Ages 2-13. Register online at or in person at 40 N. Merrimon Ave., Suite 101, Asheville. Call 505-3990.

Sept. 29

BLUE RIDGE ROLLERGIRLS: Double header, doors open at 4 p.m. with first bout at 5, second at 7. Tickets $10 in advance, $12 for ages 13 and older, free for 12 and younger. At WNC Agricultural Center, 1301 Fanning Bridge Road, Fletcher. Visit CHILDREN’S CLOTHING EXCHANGE: Gently used children’s clothing (newborn to size 16), shoes, books, games and baby equipment. 8 a.m.-4 p.m., with 40 percent off from 2-4 p.m. At U.S. Army Reserve Center, 224 Louisiana Ave., Asheville, behind KFC on Patton Avenue. If interested in consigning email or call Kristie at 667-0703. DESIGN SCIENCE DAY: Part of a three-day conference at UNC Asheville, the free, all-ages event will feature an experiential program of activities inspired by Buckminster Fuller’s “Big Ideas,” connecting an extended network of artists, design scientists, educators and performers to community members young and old. For details, visit or or call 350-8484. LAND OF THE SKY MARCHING BAND FESTIVAL: 38th annual festival at Enka High. Based on past participation, at least 20 bands are expected to compete. With exhibition performances by Enka High Marching Jets Band and Western Carolina University’s

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Pride of the Mountains Marching Band. Visit for directions, hours, admission and a list of bands registered for competition or call 670-5000. NATIONAL PUBLIC LANDS DAY: Guided walks, gardening for wildlife habitat, and service projects celebrate national forests, conservation and the outdoors. Enjoy the Cradle of Forestry’s trails, exhibits, activities on this special day. Free. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at the Cradle of Forestry, U.S. 276 in Pisgah National Forest. Visit SATURDAYS AT ACT: Bright Star Touring Theatre brings “Bluegrass and Tall Tales” for all ages to Asheville Community Theatre. Actors bring to life some of the best American tall tales with bluegrass interludes. At 10 a.m. at 35 E. Walnut St., Asheville. $5 tickets at the door. Visit USED BOOK SALE: West Asheville Library will sell a variety of books at bargain prices to benefit the library. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at 942 Haywood Road. Call 250-4750. YOUTHEATRE AUDITIONS: Flat Rock Playhouse’s YouTheatre holds auditions for ages 8 to adults for “I Never Saw a Butterfly.” Performances are Nov. 8-10. Previous YouTheatre experience not required. From 1-5 p.m. at the Robin R. Farquhar Education Center, 1855 Little River Road, Flat Rock. Call 693-3517 or visit

Sept. 30

ASHEVILLE FLYER FOR KIDS LAUNCH: T-Bone Productions and Cheesy Graphics launch their new joint project, a free monthly paper for kids, called Asheville Flyer for Kids, with a free launch party at The Hop, 640 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. From 4-7 p.m., with ice cream, music, games, and free copies of AFK. Asheville Flyer for Kids is a free monthly newsprint paper, chock full of games, jokes and activities, strictly for kids, all with a sense of humor. The AFK motto is “Puzzles & pictures & stuff to read, while your parents do something completely boring.” The first issue is a Halloween special, featuring zombie fashion tips, a recipe for fake blood, a creepy crossword, witches, monsters, and more! A preview and print-ready files are available at

Oct. 1

SCHOOL’S OUT ADVENTURE: Outdoor adventures for ages 8-14 on Asheville City School days out. Raft the Nantahala River through class 1-3 rapids. Great trip for beginners. Must be able to swim. Weight minimum is 60 pounds. Meet at the East Asheville Recreation Center, 906 Tunnel Road. Registration required; minimum of 8 participants. $32 residents, $35 nonresidents. Call 251-4029 or email YWCA SWIM LESSONS: Learn to swim in the YWCA of Asheville’s indoor solar-heated pool. Classes are available year-round for all ages and levels. To sign up, call 254-7206, ext. 110, or stop by the YWCA, 185 S. French Broad Ave. For more information, visit

Oct. 1-2

WEE NATURALIST: N.C. Arboretum program for ages 2-5 with nature lessons, stories, crafts and visits

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calendar of events Continued from Page 61 from classroom animals. Runs 10-11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays (explore classroom starting at 9:30 a.m. or at 11 a.m.). $5 if registered online, $6 for drop-ins. Younger siblings and adults free when accompanied by paid participant. Free parking for registered participants. Visit to register. Contact Michelle Pearce at 665-2492, ext. 243, or

2-5. This month, learn about bats and play fun, batty games. 10-11:30 a.m. the first Wednesday of the month. Kids 5 and younger, $3; adults, $12; older siblings (ages 6-15), $5.50; passholders, free. Advance registration required. Call 625-9611 weekdays to register. Visit

Oct. 4

ART LESSONS: Roots + Wings School of Art offers four-week sessions, Oct. 2-23, for ages 3 to fifth grade. $50 per child. $50 per child. Classes at Cathedral of All Souls, Biltmore Village. Register online at For information, call 545-4827 or email » Ages 3-6: 1:30-2:30 p.m. Tuesdays. Sculpture and designs inspired by nature. » Grades K-5: 4-5 p.m. Tuesdays. Mixed media with bookmaking and photography. ASHEVILLE CATHOLIC SCHOOL: Open house the first Tuesday of each month, 10-11:30 a.m. Call 2525708 for reservations. For private tour, call Debbie Mowrey at 252-7896 or email Visit

BUTTERFLIES AND BUGS: Learn life cycles and how to identify butterflies and bugs. Ages 7-10. From 2-3:30 p.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. $15 nonmembers/$9 members. Limited space. Call 697-8333 or visit CHILDBIRTH CLASSES: A free two-session class, Oct. 4 and 11, for expectant parents covering the labor and delivery process, relaxation, breathing patterns, birth options, positioning and comfort measures. 6:30–9 p.m. Registration required. At Pardee Hospital, 800 N. Justice St., Hendersonville. Call 866-790-WELL or visit to register. HEALTHY KIDS CLUB: Registered dental hygenist Diana Rothweiler presents a dental health puppet show with music and stories for ages 2-5. Program is about 30 minutes. Healthy Kids Club is 11 a.m. the first Thursday if the month at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Free with admission or membership. Call 697-8333 or visit

Oct. 3

Oct. 5

Oct. 2

SPROUTING NATURALISTS: New preschool-age nature program at Chimney Rock State Park. For ages


ROCK ’N’ ROLL: Learn all about rock properties and how to identify different rocks. Peer through a

stereoscope and see rock wonders. Ages 7-10. $15 nonmembers/$9 members. Limited spaces. Call 6978333 to register. From 3:30-5 p.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit

Oct. 5 and 6

CORDUROY VISITS: The storybook bear visits Hands On! A Child’s Gallery from 1-2:30 p.m. each day. Free with admission. At 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Free with admission or membership. Call 697-8333 or visit

Oct. 6

ASHEVILLE YMCA PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: For ages 2-13. Themed nights include swimming, healthy snacks, games and crafts. 6-10 p.m. the first Saturday of each month at the Downtown YMCA, 30 Woodfin St., Asheville. $15 members/$23 nonmembers, with $2 sibling discount. Register online at Call 210-9622 or email for more information. BOOK SIGNING AND RELEASE PARTY: “A Wrinkle in Time: The Graphic Novel,” by Hope Larson. With activities and door prizes. Free. From 1-3 p.m. at Spellbound Children’s Bookshop, 21 Battery Park Ave., Asheville. Visit FOREST FESTIVAL DAY AND WOODSMEN’S MEET: More than 80 traditional craftsmen, exhibitors, forestry students and musicians gather at the Cradle of Forestry to celebrate forests and forest heritage. With live music, children’s activities, wood carvers, weavers, a blacksmith, and the 17th annual Intercollegiate Woodsmen’s Meet, a lumberjack competition, organized by

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Haywood Community College. $6 for ages 16 and older, $3 for ages 4-15 and America the Beautiful and Golden Age pass holders, free for children under 4. Call 877-3130 or visit FULL MOON FARM HOWL IN: Tour Full Moon Farm and learn about wolfdogs. Optional potluck dinner for $5 per plate (farm provides meat and drinks). 3-6 p.m. in Black Mountain. Call 664-9818 for directions. For information, visit REUTER FAMILY YMCA SWIM LESSONS: Classes for ages 6 months-12 years on Saturdays, Oct. 6-27. Registration deadline is Sept. 25. Starts at $25. Call 651-9622 or visit RUNWAY 5K AND AVIATION DAY: Run on the Asheville Regional Airport runway in a 5K starting at 9:30 a.m. From 10 a.m.-2 p.m., see, touch and sit in airplanes, explore the machinery used to maintain an airport like firetrucks and snow removal equipment, learn about working in aviation, participate in kids’ activities and more. Visit STAR WARS READS DAY: Costume contest, giveaways and the latest “Star Wars” books. Free and open to the public, 1 p.m. at The Fountainhead Bookstore, 408 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit TEMPLE BAPTIST SCHOOL AUCTION: Silent and live auction as a fundraiser for the school. Free admission with lunch for nominal cost. 10 a.m. at school gym, 3 Hawkins Lane, Asheville. For information or to donate items for the sale, call 252-3712. VERITAS FLEA MARKET: Veritas Christian Academy’s parent-teacher organization host a flea market, 8 a.m.-2 p.m. in the school’s gymnasium, 17 Cane Creek Road, Fletcher. Visit WOMEN & MONEY CONFERENCE: OnTrack Fi-

nancial Education and Counseling sponsors a workshop by financial experts on a variety of topics geared toward women. Keynote speaker is Jessica Chilton of Spark Creative Wellness. 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m. at First Baptist Church of Asheville, 5 Oak St. Visit or call 255-5166, ext. 112, to register or for more information.

Oct. 7

ROYAL BOOK CLUB: Discusses “The Maze Runner” by James Dashner. Open to all 18 and older. No joining or RSVP needed. Free. From 4-5 p.m. at Spellbound Children’s Bookshop, 21 Battery Park Ave., Asheville. Visit

Oct. 8

ASHEVILLE YMCA SWIM LESSONS: Classes for pre-K and youth, Mondays and Wednesdays, Oct. 8-31. Registration deadline is Oct. 5. Starts at $45. Call 210-9605 or visit YOUTH FITNESS CLASS: Co-ed after-school class for grades 5-8. Learn value of teamwork with healthy competition, strength training, running, circuit drills and more. On Mondays and Wednesday. For grades 5-6, 3:45-4:30 p.m.; for grades 7-8, 4:45-5:30 p.m. $115 for eight weeks. Taught by April Livesay, At River Ridge Health and Wellness, 802 Fairview Road, Asheville.

Oct. 8-9

WEE NATURALIST: N.C. Arboretum program for ages 2-5 with nature lessons, stories, crafts and visits

Continues on Page 64



calendar of events Continued from Page 63 from classroom animals. Runs 10-11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays (explore classroom starting at 9:30 a.m. or at 11 a.m.). $5 if registered online, $6 for drop-ins. Younger siblings and adults free when accompanied by paid participant. Free parking for registered participants. Visit to register. Contact Michelle Pearce at 665-2492, ext. 243, or

Oct. 9

ASHEVILLE YMCA SWIM LESSONS: Classes for pre-K and youth, Tuesday and Thursdays, Oct. 9-Nov. 1. Registration deadline is Oct. 5. Starts at $45. Call 210-9605 or visit CARDIO KIDS: Co-ed program for grades 3-4 with fun fitness, like kickboxing, step, jump rope, fitness balls and more in organized games. Eightweek session with classes 3:45-4:30 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. $115 for eight weeks. Email At River Ridge Health and Wellness, 802 Fairview Road, Asheville. HOME SCHOOL ART PROGRAM: Asheville Art Museum offers a home-school program for grades 1-4, from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Each session includes a museum tour and hands-on activities. $4 per student per session. Enrollment is limited; registration required. Call 253-3227, ext. 122, to register. Visit


Oct. 9-10

‘MARTHA SPEAKS’: Diana Wortham Theatre’s matinee series presents the story of Martha, the ordinary dog who started speaking after eating a bowl of alphabet soup. For pre-K (older than 2) through fourth grade. 10 a.m. and noon. $7 individual tickets, $6 for groups of 11 or more. Call 257-4530 or visit for tickets.

Oct. 10

GRANDMA STORY WOMAN: Come hear a good story from a fantastic story teller at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery. All ages. Free with admission and for members. At 11 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit or call 697-8333. MINISTRY MEALS IN MINUTES: Learn the fundamentals of freezer cooking and take home two meals for your family and others. Participants bring their own ingredients and supplies, posted one week prior. From 9:30-11:30 a.m. at Biltmore Baptist Church, 35 Clayton Road. Child care provided. $5 registration at door. Ongoing bi-monthly event (second and fourth Wednesday) with a different menu each session. Visit for more details and weekly menu.

Oct. 11

ORIGAMI FOLDING FRENZY: The Health Adventure hosts origami club for all levels, 4-5 p.m. second Thursday of the month. Learn new folds, share favorites and meet fellow origami enthusiasts. Paper available at museum store or bring your own. Free with admission. At Biltmore Square Mall, off Brevard Road. Call 665-

2217 or visit

Oct. 12

KIDS’ NIGHT: Colburn Earth Science Museum hosts Kids’ Night at the Museum with activities, games, crafts, dinner and hands-on science lessons. This month, learn about “Spooky Science.” For grades K-4. $20 nonmembers, $16 members and siblings. 5-9 p.m. in Pack Place, 2 S. Pack Square, Asheville. Register by phone at 254-7162. Visit for more information. PARENTS’ NIGHT OUT: Kids paint pottery, have pizza and play games, 6-9 p.m. the second Friday of the month at Fired Up! Creative Lounge, 26 Wall St., Asheville, and 321 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Ages 5-12. $25. Registration required. Call Asheville shop at 253-8181 and Hendersonville shop at 698-9960.

Oct. 13

BUDDY WALK: WNC Down Syndrome Alliance sponsors 15th annual event. Registration at 11 a.m., walk at noon, at Fletcher Community Park. For more information and to register, visit CAMPING IN THE OLD STYLE: Visit with a small group of re-enactors in a reconstructed campsite of the early 1900s. See fire by flint, steel and friction, old-style campfire cookery, four different styles of period shelters, and traditional camp tools in use. Each camper has expertise in various aspects of woodcraft, history and nature study, and welcomes questions from visitors. Presented by the Traditional Outdoor Skills Program, Schiele Museum of Natural History in Gastonia. 9 a.m.-5 p.m. at Cradle of Forestry in America, on

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U.S. 276 in Pisgah National Forest. $5 adults, free for ages 16 and younger. Call 877-3130 or visit FAMILIES HELPING FAMILIES: Free fall children’s clothing (sizes newborn to 14) and books. The community is welcome to come and pick out items needed for children for fall and winter. Free. 9 a.m.-noon at West Asheville Baptist Church gym, 926 Haywood Road, Asheville. Call Vicki Ross at 216-0535 or email ‘SLEEPING BEAUTY’: The Asheville Puppetry Alliance presents “Sleeping Beauty” by the National Marionette Theatre from Vermont. This production combines beautifully crafted marionettes with the timeless music from Tchaikovsky’s ballet. At 11 a.m. at Diana Wortham Theatre, Pack Place, 2 S. Pack Square, Asheville. Recommended for ages 4 and older. Tickets $8. Call 257-4530 or get tickets online at For details on the show, visit SMOKY MOUNTAIN CHESS CLUB TOURNAMENT: In recognition of National Chess Day. All ages and levels of players are welcome. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. at Blue Ridge Books, 152 S. Main St., Waynesville. Call 4566000.

Oct. 15-16

WEE NATURALIST: N.C. Arboretum program for ages 2-5 with nature lessons, stories, crafts and visits from classroom animals. Runs 10-11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays (explore classroom starting at 9:30 a.m. or at 11 a.m.). $5 if registered online, $6 for drop-ins. Younger siblings and adults free when accompanied by paid participant. Free parking for registered participants. Visit to register. Contact Michelle Pearce at 665-2492, ext. 243, or

Oct. 17

HOME SCHOOL OUTDOOR ADVENTURES: Monthly outdoor adventure for home-schoolers

ages 8-17. This month, bike along Swamp Rabbit Bike Trail near Greenville, S.C., round-trip about 20 miles. Mostly flat trail. Bikers must be comfortable on bikes. Meet at East Asheville Recreation Center, 906 Tunnel Road. Call for trip details, 251-4029. Registration required, minimum of eight participants. $18 resident, $20 nonresident. Email STORYBOOK DRAMA: Interactive drama class allows children ages 3-6 to bring a book to life through acting, art and creative movement. October book is “Rainbow Fish.” Call to register, 697-8333. $5 members, $10 nonmembers. At 11 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit

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Oct. 14

JEWISH TEENS WORKSHOP: Registration now open for Chabad’s Fall JLI Teens course: “Super Jew: The Miracle of Jewish Survival.” What is the secret to our survival? What does it mean to be a Jew in a modern world? For ages 13 and older. At 6:45 p.m. Sundays, Oct. 14-Dec. 2. At the Chabad House, 660 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Call 505-0746 or visit $85.



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Oct. 18

ART OF BREAST-FEEDING: Pardee Hospital offers free class for new moms, 6:30-8 p.m. at hospital, 800 N. Justice St., Hendersonville. Registration is required. Call 866-790-WELL or visit to register. CLAY CLASS: Make a clay animal whistle in this two-part class at Fired Up! Creative Lounge, 321 N. Main St., Hendersonville. 3:30-5 p.m. Oct. 18 and 25. $35 per person, ages 9-adult. Call 698-9960 for more info and to make a reservation.

Oct. 19-20

‘THE LEGEND OF TOMMY HODGES’ OUTDOOR DRAMA: A drama about the first forestry school in America. Walk from scene to scene in the Pink Beds area. Hear stories based on student diaries from 1903-07. Warm clothing, walking shoes and flashlights recommended. Call 877-3130 or visit for showtimes. Reservations requested. Tickets are $6 for adults, $3 for ages 5-15.

Oct. 22

DRUGLESS THERAPY TALK: For ADD, ADHD, dyslexia and other learning disabilities. Free talk about how the brain processes information and how the problems can be permanently corrected in adults and children. Improve the ability to learn, remember and focus. 6:30 p.m. at Earth Fare South, 1865 Hendersonville Road, Asheville. RSVP to 216-4444 or Visit HANGER HALL OPEN HOUSE: Learn more about the school for girls in sixth to eighth grades, 9:3011:30 a.m., at 30 Ben Lippen School Road, Asheville. RSVP to Call 258-3600 or visit SCHOOL’S OUT ADVENTURE: Outdoor adventures for ages 8-14 on Asheville City School days out. Spend the day pedaling on the Virginia Creeper Trail. Mostly downhill, 17 miles, from White Top to Damascus. Must be comfortable on a bike. Meet at the East Asheville Recreation Center, 906 Tunnel Road. Registration required; minimum of 8 participants. $40 residents, $45 nonresidents; includes bike rental and helmet. Call 251-4029 or email

Oct. 22-23

WEE NATURALIST: N.C. Arboretum program for ages 2-5 with nature lessons, stories, crafts and visits from classroom animals. Runs 10-11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays (explore classroom starting at 9:30 a.m. or at 11 a.m.). $5 if registered online, $6 for drop-ins. Younger siblings and adults free when accompanied by paid participant. Free parking for registered participants. Visit to register. Contact Michelle Pearce at 665-2492, ext. 243, or

Oct. 23

‘THE GIVER’: Diana Wortham Theatre’s matinee series brings an adaption of Lois Lowry’s “The Giver” to the stage. For grades 4-12. At 10 a.m. $7 individual


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tickets, $6 for groups of 11 or more. Visit or call 257-4530 for tickets.

Oct. 24

BOOK N’ CRAFT: Come hear “On Halloween Night” by Harriet Ziefert. Free with admission and for members. At 11 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit FALL HOME SCHOOL DAY: Chimney Rock State Park’s education specialists offer fun, interactive programs designed to meet state curriculum standards. $7 for Grady’s Kids Club members, $13 for students (includes admission and program), free for adult passholders, $12 for adults. Visit for details and to register. JEWISH AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM: Registration is open for A Taste of CHS, an educational program from Chabad’s Hebrew School of the Arts. Curriculum covers beginning Hebrew language together with Jewish music, dance, and culture. For ages 3-5. Three terms per year, four consecutive Wednesday classes each term. Starting Wed. Oct 24, 3:30-5:00 pm. At the Chabad House, 660 Merrimon Ave. Call 505-0746, email, or visit MINISTRY MEALS IN MINUTES: Learn the fundamentals of freezer cooking and take home two meals. Participants bring their own ingredients and supplies, posted one week prior. From 9:30-11:30 a.m. at Biltmore Baptist Church, 35 Clayton Road. Child care provided. $5 registration at door. Ongoing bi-monthly event (second and fourth Wednesday) with a different menu each session. Visit for more details and weekly menu.

Oct. 25

HARVEST FESTIVAL: Oakley Farmers Market marks the end of its first season with live music, a scavenger hunt, children’s and pet costume contests, face painting, games, antique tractor and farm equipment raffle and more. Slow Food Asheville will offer food prepared using the produce and products of market vendors, including chicken chili with sweet potato cornbread, winter squash bisque with local bread, goat cheese and crackers, autumn desserts and much more (available by donation). 3:30-6:30 p.m. in parking lot behind Oakley United Methodist Church, 607 Fairview Road, Asheville. Visit INFANT CARE CLASS: Basics including newborn characteristics, feeding, bathing, cord care, diapering and swaddling. Free. 6:30-8 p.m. at Pardee Hospital, 800 N. Justice St., Hendersonville. Registration is required. Call 866-790-WELL or visit to register.

Oct. 26

LEARN SPANISH CREATIVELY: Students ages 3-6 will learn basic Spanish vocabulary and colors through games, dramatic play, movement, and songs for a four-week series. Thirty-minute class is 11 a.m. Fridays through Nov. 16. Each series will focus on new objectives. Repetition is very important for children to learn a language. It is recommended students attend all four classes. $35 members/$40 nonmembers for the four classes. Call 697-8333 to register. At Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit

The Runway 5K and Aviation Day is Oct. 6 at Asheville Regional Airport. The race will take over the entire runway, all 8,001 feet of it. ERIN BRETHAUER/EBRETHAU@CITIZEN-TIMES.COM

Oct. 26-28

‘WILLY WONKA JR.’: Asheville Community Theatre’s youth production class puts on Roald Dahl’s story of the world-famous candy man comes to life in this stage adaptation of “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” Performed by 30 students ranging in age from 7-15. Performances are 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26, and 2:30 p.m. Oct. 27 and 28. Tickets are $5 at the door. Visit

Oct. 27

ASHEVILLE YMCA SWIM LESSONS: Classes for ages 6 months and older, Saturday mornings, Oct. 27-Nov. 17. Registration deadline is Oct. 24. Starts at $25. Call 210-9605 or visit

Oct. 28

BAT BOX BUILDING WORKSHOP: Celebrate the Year of the Bat by learning about bats and build your own bat box to attract bats to your backyard. For all ages, 3-4:30 p.m. at Chimney Rock Park. Visit for details and to register. BAT MITZVAH CLUB: The coolest club in town for American Jewish girls. Projects, discussions, a Shabbaton, BMC challenges and friends make this club a lifetime opportunity that your daughter will always cherish. One Sunday a month, beginning Oct. 28. For all bat mitzvah-age girls in the community, ages 11-13. At the Chabad House, 660 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Call 505-0746 or visit

Oct. 29-30

WEE NATURALIST: N.C. Arboretum program for ages 2-5 with nature lessons, stories, crafts and visits from classroom animals. Runs 10-11 a.m. Mondays and Tuesdays (explore classroom starting at 9:30 a.m. or at 11 a.m.). $5 if registered online, $6 for drop-ins. Younger siblings and adults free when accompanied by paid participant. Free parking for registered participants. Visit to register. Contact Michelle Pearce at 665-2492, ext. 243, or

Oct. 30

ART LESSONS: Roots + Wings School of Art offers


four-week sessions, Oct. 30-Nov. 20, for ages 3 to fifth grade. $50 per child. $50 per child. Classes at Cathedral of All Souls, Biltmore Village. Register online at For information, call 5454827 or email » Ages 3-6: 1:30-2:30 p.m. Tuesdays. Underwater designs with painting and collage. » Grades K-5: 4-5 p.m. Tuesdays. Printmaking and collage inspired by nature. ASHEVILLE COMMUNITY THEATRE CLASS: “You’re A Good Man, Charlie Brown” is a great first show for those who would like to perform in a musical. Class is open to ages 6-12. Classes start Oct. 30 and meet 4:30-6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays until Jan. 3, after which rehearsals are Monday-Thursday. Performances Jan 18-20. For tuition information or to register, visit or call 254-1320. PARI SCI GIRLS PROGRAM: For girls ages 9-14. Each month’s program will lead young girls to try a different facet of science and bring real connections to that field for their pursuit beyond the monthly program. October’s topic is 4-H EcoBot Build, at the Transylvania 4-H Office, 98 E. Morgan St., Brevard. $10. Register online at or call 862-5554. ‘SKIPPYJON JONES’: Diana Wortham Theatre’s matinee series brings the story of Skippyjon Jones, the kitten with big ears and bigger dreams, to life. Recommended for pre-K (older than 2) through grade 3. At 10 a.m. and noon. $7 individual tickets, $6 for groups of 11 or more. Visit or call 2574530 for tickets.

Oct. 31

CRAZY CHEMISTRY: Make Boo Bubbles. For ages 3 and older. Call 697-8333 to register; limited spaces. Free with admission. At 11 a.m. at Hands On! A Child’s Gallery, 318 N. Main St., Hendersonville. Visit

Nov. 1

‘MOTET’: Diana Wortham Theatre’s matinee series brings a collaboration between Finland’s creative Circo Aereo and Britain’s acclaimed Gandini Juggling. This juggling like you have never seen before. Five performers manipulate objects that float, collapse and

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calendar of events

The 15th Annual WNC Down Syndrome Alliance Buddy Walk is Oct. 13 at Fletcher Community Park. COLBY

Continued from Page 67 mesmerize, combining captivating and gravitydefying movement with magical images. Recommended for grades K-12. At 10 a.m. $7 individual tickets, $6 for groups of 11 or more. Visit or call 257-4530 for tickets.


Nov. 2


PARI HOME SCHOOL DAY: Astronomers and educators have designed age-appropriate modules for home-schoolers. 10 a.m.-2 p.m. at PARI, outside Rosman. $20 per student, nonrefundable. No charge for parents/chaperones. For information or to register, visit


Nov. 3

JOYFUL BIRTH & BREASTFEEDING EXPO: Free speakers, films, giveaways, kids’ activities adn exhibitors. Featuring internationally known midwife and author Ina May Gaskin. 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at Blue Ridge Mall, 1800 Four Seasons Blvd., Hendersonville. Visit

Nov. 5

YWCA SWIM LESSONS: Learn to swim in the YWCA of Asheville’s indoor solar-heated pool. Classes are available year-round for all ages and levels. To sign up, call 254-7206, ext. 110, or stop by the YWCA, 185 S. French Broad Ave. For more information, visit

Nov. 6

HANGER HALL OPEN HOUSE: Learn more about the school for girls in sixth to eighth grades, 9:3011:30 a.m., at 30 Ben Lippen School Road, Asheville. RSVP to Call 258-3600 or visit

Nov. 12

SCHOOL’S OUT ADVENTURE: Outdoor adventures for ages 8-14 on Asheville City School days out. Bike along the Swamp Rabbit Bike Trail to Falls Park, near Greenville, S.C., round trip about 20 miles. Mostly flat trail; must be comforable on bikes. Bring own bike and helmet. Meet at the East Asheville Recreation Center, 906 Tunnel Road. Registration required; minimum of 8 participants. $18 residents, $20 nonresidents. Call 251-4029 or email

Nov. 17

FOSTER ADOPT FALL FESTIVAL: Learn more about foster parenting and about the older children who are waiting for adoption. With crafts for kids, giveaways, snacks and more. Free. 1-4 p.m. at DoubleTree Biltmore, 115 Hendersonville Road, Asheville. Email or call 250-5868.


ASHEVILLE YOUTH ENSEMBLE: Fall music series has a train theme, complete with train whistles for every student. New young musicians welcome with at least one year of note reading experience playing


violin, viola, cello, bass, flute, recorder and percussion (percussion section also open to piano players). Ensemble meets 4-5 p.m. Tuesdays in East Asheville. For more information or to join contact Lisa Smith at 299-4856 or CONNECT: INCREASING SOCIAL FLEXIBILITY THROUGH ACTIONS AND THOUGHTS: Class at St. Gerard House, 620 Oakland St., Hendersonville, to learn how thoughts, actions and reactions affect social situations. Classes are interactive, age appropriate and fund. Curriculum incorporates social thinking lessons and characters, uses evidence-based practices, games, role play and skits. Call 693-4223, ext. 21, for information on next session. St. Gerard House provides services for children with autism spectrum diagnosis but a child and/or adolescent taking this class does not need to be diagnosed. HEALTH ADVENTURE PROGRAMS: At the museum, in Biltmore Square Mall, at 800 Brevard Road, Suite 620. Call 665-2217 or visit » Healthier Ever After: On exhibit through Dec. 31. An interactive fairy tale forest with costumes, two-story castle and more to teach about how to live a healthy life. » Science Wonders on Wednesday: Educators present highlights from favorite programs such as “Forces and Motion,” “Sound Science” and “Yes, No, Maybe.” Enjoy science demonstrations of all kinds, including a few with costumes, music, and lots of silliness. At 3:30 p.m. Wednesdays. Free with admission. Space is limited so guests will be admitted on a first come-first served basis. » Preschool Play Date: Interactive fun just for preschoolers, 10:30-11 a.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. Free with admission. » Super Science Saturday: Experiment with science through hands-on activities led by museum facilitators. All ages. Noon-2 p.m. each Saturday. Free with museum admission or membership. SMOKY MOUNTAIN CHESS CLUB: Meets 2-4 p.m. Thursday at Blue Ridge Books, 152 S. Main St., Waynesville. Players of all levels welcome. Call 456-6000. THE TREE HOUSE DROP-OFF: Hourly service for ages 12 months-8 years. 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. $8 per hour, siblings $6 per hour; three-hour maximum. At 1020 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Visit or call 505-2589. TINY TYKES: Asheville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts offers the Tiny Tykes toddler program. Children will enjoy crafts, manipulatives and centers, along with active play in the gym at the Stephens Lee Recreation

Center, 30 George Washington Carver St., Themeweek classes are 10 a.m.-noon Wednesday and Friday. $1 per class. Join the Tiny Tykes Club for multiclass rates. For more information, contact Jessica Johnston at 350-2058 or CELEBRATION SINGERS OF ASHEVILLE: Singers ages 7-14 are invited to join Asheville’s community chorus. Rehearsals 6-7:45 p.m. Thursdays at First Congregational Church, Downtown Asheville. Call Ginger Haselden at 230-5778. Visit CHABAD HEBREW SCHOOL OF THE ARTS: Enrollment now open for Chabad Hebrew School of the Arts, a combination Sunday School and Hebrew School Program. Sibling discounts available. For ages 3-13. Sundays 10 a.m.-noon. September-May. At the Chabad House, 660 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Call 505-0746 or visit YWCA AFTER-SCHOOL PROGRAM: Registration is open for the 5-star program for grades K-6. Program runs 2:30-6 p.m. Monday-Friday at the YWCA, 185 S. French Broad Ave. With transportation from area schools. Participants receive homework assistance, and participate in enrichment activities such as swimming lessons, gardening, dance and field trips. Space is limited. $70/week for YWCA members and $104/week for nonmembers. Visit or call CiCi Weston at 254-7206, ext. 111. ASHEVILLE CLOGGING AND DANCE COMPANY: Classes for all ages and skill levels. Visit or email Ashley Shimberg at T-BONE’S RADIO ACTIVE KIDS: Stories, music, contests, interviews and all things for families in the Asheville area. 8-10 a.m. Saturdays on SPANISH 4 KIDS: An enjoyable and effective way to learn Spanish by exposing children ages 3-5 to the language sounds. Taught by Monica Bastin, a native of Peru. With games, singing, dancing, storytelling and lots of fun. 3:30-4:15 p.m. Thursdays at Movement Center, French Broad Food Co-op. Email or call 335-2120. ASHEVILLE AREA MUSIC TOGETHER: Each class is a rich, playful, relaxed family experience full of new and traditional songs and chants. Activities include singing, finger play, large movement, instrument play, and parent education. Classes in West, downtown, and South Asheville and Marshall. Free visits also available last week of August. Visit or or email Kari Richmond,

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WNC Parent - October 2012  

October 2012 issue of WNC Parent

WNC Parent - October 2012  

October 2012 issue of WNC Parent