OUR 26TH YEAR OF WEEKLY INDEPENDENT NEWS, ARTS & EVENTS FOR WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA VOL. 26 NO. 21 DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
Crossroads 7-hour debate gets continued Russ Wilson hosts a big-band Christmas concert
IN THE MOMENT MOUNTAINX.COM
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C O NTAC T US
Crossroads 7-hour debate gets continued Russ Wilson hosts a big-band Christmas concert
IN THE MOMENT FEATURES
STARTS ON PAGE 15 IN THE SPIRIT For our annual In the Spirit issue, Xpress takes at look at spirituality from several angles — from Ashevilleans who seek religion without a deity to mindful strategies for coping with political upheaval to how local music ministries soundtrack the worship experience and more. COVER DESIGN Scott Southwick
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OUR 26TH YEAR OF WEEKLY INDEPENDENT NEWS, ARTS & EVENTS FOR WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA VOL. 26 NO. 21 DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
C O NT E NT S
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10 NEED OR ‘INVASION’? Crossroads at West Asheville debate continued to Jan. 23
15 ‘A MAN OF GREAT FORCE’
24 SURVIVING TROUBLED TIMES Strategies for coping with political upheaval and spiritual malaise
24 SURVIVING TROUBLED TIMES 28 MANY HANDS 30 FEEDING THE SOUL 37 MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE
30 FEEDING THE SOUL Faith organizations fight food insecurity
28 MANY HANDS Lay leaders tie faith and environmental action
37 MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE How local music ministries soundtrack spiritual experience
16 NEVER NOTHING
40 ALL ABOUT THE MUSIC Russ Wilson hosts his annual Christmas show
5 LETTERS 5 CARTOON: MOLTON 7 CARTOON: BRENT BROWN 8 COMMENTARY 10 NEWS 13 BUNCOMBE BEAT 15 ASHEVILLE ARCHIVES 19 COMMUNITY CALENDAR 22 GIVE!LOCAL EVENTS 24 WELLNESS 28 GREEN SCENE 30 FOOD 32 SMALL BITES 34 CAROLINA BEER GUY 37 ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT 44 SMART BETS 46 CLUBLAND 52 MOVIES 53 SCREEN SCENE 54 FREEWILL ASTROLOGY 54 CLASSIFIEDS 55 NY TIMES CROSSWORD
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Send your letters to the editor to firstname.lastname@example.org. STA F F PUBLISHER: Jeff Fobes ASSISTANT TO THE PUBLISHER: Susan Hutchinson MANAGING EDITOR: Virginia Daffron A&E EDITOR: Alli Marshall FOOD EDITOR: Gina Smith GREEN SCENE EDITOR: Daniel Walton OPINION EDITOR: Tracy Rose STAFF REPORTERS: Able Allen, Edwin Arnaudin, Thomas Calder, Laura Hackett, Brooke Randle, Daniel Walton COMMUNITY CALENDAR EDITOR: Deborah Robertson
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Recent jail coverage sets the right tone Thanks for your recent in-depth coverage of the Buncombe County Detention Center [“On the Inside: Waiting for Justice in the Buncombe County Jail,” Nov. 27, Xpress]. Reporter Virginia Daffron’s article was informative, and I especially appreciated how the piece afforded incarcerated people basic human dignity and agency. This kind of humanizing discourse needs to be embraced more broadly within our community if the county is to meet even its modest goals of reducing the jail population by 15% and providing more and better services for those in detention. This is because policing and incarceration are dynamically interrelated. As Ms. Daffron’s article points out (and as the county’s plan attests), recent trends point toward support for decarceration; but such laudable goals exist uneasily alongside increasingly aggressive demands that APD increase patrols and arrests, especially in response to nonviolent drug and “quality of life” offenses like panhandling, loitering and intoxication. As many readers will no doubt be aware, antipathy over these and related issues has been growing for some time now, particularly in rapidly gentrifying areas like West Asheville. Despite a complex mix of factors, at the heart of these debates
lies a question of values: Do we seek to criminalize and punish people who are socially and economically marginalized or to engage in an ethic of care and respect toward all community members? Ultimately, policy goals and policing culture flow from these values. In the final analysis, the dehumanizing discourse of “removing undesirables,” which has become sadly normalized and increasingly vicious as of late, is irreconcilable with achieving the county’s stated goals. Hats off to Ms. Daffron and Mountain Xpress for modeling a better path forward. — Julie Schneyer Volunteer, Asheville Prison Books West Asheville
City and county should save Ravenscroft trees I wonder how many decades it takes an oak tree or any tree to go from a tiny acorn or seed to become a creation of majestic beauty? It takes a man with a chainsaw only a few minutes to cut down a tree. At the present rate of construction, I can envision a time when Asheville will be covered in concrete and tall buildings, just like New York City. There, a man had the foresight to see New York without a tree or blade of grass. So he gave the city land he owned with the proviso that no buildings or tree removal be done. That place is now called Central Park, New
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DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
O P I NI O N
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York — the only place where a family can go to see nature. The city and county should each contribute half the purchase price to save those trees for future generations. Cutting down a tree unnecessarily is like throwing the original “Mona Lisa” into a fire. There is great urgency to save the Ravenscroft acreage. I encourage all pro-Ravenscroft tree people to contact the City Council and Board of Commissioners before the buzz of chainsaws is heard. — Tom L. Nanney Asheville Editor’s note: For more info on the effort to save the trees at 11 Collier Ave. in Asheville’s South Slope area, see avl.mx/6sk.
Only three U.S. states — California, Florida and Texas — have ACA exchange enrollment numbers higher than North Carolina. In 2018, the average number of participating insurers per state was 3.5, while North Carolina had one choice. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina had at least 10 executives who were paid more than $1 million dollars, topped by the chief executive officer, who was paid $3.6 million dollars — and is essentially a monopoly in Western North Carolina. Blue Cross financials are in plain English. In 2018, the leadership at Blue Cross chose to raise premiums 14.1%, resulting in their final report that “the Affordable Care Act line of business … performed better than forecasted” and was “a key driver of Blue Cross NC’s 2018 performance” (March 1, 2019, financial announcement). In fact, the 2018 profit was “too good” by federal law that it exceeded capped federal profits set by the U.S. government. Since the federal government requires a correction, “$75 per person on average” was sent back via check to [about 700,000] customers for a total of [about $52.4 million] in “excessive premiums.” What’s most important, Blue Cross originally asked for a 22.9% rate increase and got the 14.1%, so that rebate check would have been bigger (8.8% more greed than the approved 14.1%). Blue Cross could try to blatantly say — in plain English — “We saved you money,” but that’s not true. In this monopoly, Blue Cross collected too much of your dollars in the first place, and that’s the problem. We could have used that money for other bills. For 2019,
More coverage needed on ‘off-market health plans’ I am stating my concerns about overpromoting Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina’s health plans — especially as the “go-to” health plan — in the article “Coverage Connection: Residents May See Lower Rates, Plan Changes for 2020 Health Insurance” [Nov. 20, Xpress]. I am reaching out to those who get their plans through the Affordable Care Act via healthcare. gov. New competitors to Western North Carolina should not be totally discounted. We need more articles to further explain “off-market health plans” and what they do and do not mean. This article discounts the plans across the board with evaluation.
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the plans offered a 4.1% decrease in premiums. For 2020, an additional 3% decrease in premiums for individual plans (WNC). The pain point to one’s bank account: a 7% net increase in total premiums and severe restrictions to what is and is not covered (preapproval, denials, procedure limitations, out of network, in network, etc.). Think about how much you spent in premiums, copays and deductibles. And, think about relating your dollars to Blue Cross “plain English” statement that the “average claims per person climbed to an average of $5,326 per fully insured person.” Blue Cross also grew its reserves from 3.7 to 4.81 months, which is higher than the three-[month] state minimum. That is your money being “saved” for future people instead of being used to provide you and your family health care that year. If you feel the medical system is breaking your bank, here is the evidence. Blue Cross does everything in plain sight and in plain English. I find what’s happening is unbearable to people of Western North Carolina, and we need to talk about what’s happening. We need to continue to be educated. We need to let people know when there is choice and why it works for them and why there are risks. I do not think it’s fair to discount “off-market health plans” from a full discussion. — Joel C. Harder Arden Editor’s note: Xpress always appreciates hearing feedback from our readers. In this case, though the article in question devoted more space to discussing BCBS’s plans, we don’t think we’ve given short shrift to covering off-market plans, which were explored extensively in last fall's article, “To Your Health: Local Experts Explain Insurance Market Changes, Urge Enrollment Before Dec. 15 Deadline.” At this time, we don't have plans for another article on the topic. X
Correction In our Dec. 11 Wellness article, “Canary in the Coal Mine: Collaborative Community Effort Tackles Rising Health Inequities,” we misstated Hannah Legerton’s employer. She works for MAHEC.
C A R T O O N B Y B R E NT B R O W N
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Sometimes less is more BY NAN K. CHASE “Have you cut down a tree today?” That’s been my not-quite-kidding motto for years, ever since I realized how easy it is to overplant and undermaintain trees in the city and end up with a dense tangle of vegetation that’s not good for the long-term health of the canopy. And that tangle of trees and undergrowth, along with the robust planting of fruit trees and fruiting vines, is attractive to bears and other potentially dangerous wildlife. I’m not talking about taking a chainsaw to mature landscape trees willy-nilly, developer-style. Rather, as a longtime gardener who has planted probably a hundred trees myself in urban settings, I have found that maintaining a healthy, tree-enriched landscape requires vigilance, year-round maintenance and occasional work by professional arborists, plus a certain unsentimentality and willingness to cull.
NAN K. CHASE Under the general heading of “cutting down a tree today” I include the annual springtime ritual of pulling up hundreds — maybe thousands — of tiny seedlings in preemptive strikes; some years it’s maples, some years locust trees or white pines or box elders or oaks. If left alone, these seedlings can quickly take root,
Fewer trees can create a better canopy (with fewer bears)
in the ground and in neglected rain gutters and stormwater drains, causing serious damage. Then there’s the matter of rooting out the saplings that have somehow sprung up anyway. If they aren’t removed when young, they quickly pick up steam in the first few years of life and can become nuisance trees within a decade or so — and then they get expensive to thin. The public clamor is growing louder for increasing Asheville’s tree canopy, amid news that as many as 19,000 trees may have been lost in the last 10 years. I fear, however, that the result may be a simplistic cry to Plant More Trees. Yow! The thought of simply planting 19,000 more trees in Asheville makes me shudder. According to official city of Asheville sources, the town’s current
44.5% tree canopy already compares favorably with those of some other leafy cities and indeed exceeds even the targets of others. Boone, for example, which is also located in a densely wooded setting, has been working in recent years to achieve a 40% canopy. Despite the importance of trees in fighting noise and air pollution, providing shade and bird habitat, preventing erosion and filtering contaminants from groundwater, forestry experts say the long-term health of woodlands requires tree thinning. This helps provide the soil nutrients, water, sunlight and air that the biggest specimens need in order to thrive. According to the American Forest Foundation, removing smaller trees in a crowded forest setting can let the others “stretch and
NOWHERE TO RUN TO, NOWHERE TO HIDE: The wide-open expanses of North Asheville in 1913 didn't resemble today’s bear-friendly thickets. Photo courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, Pack Memorial Library, Asheville
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grow.” A rule of thumb is to remove competing trees “much as you would weed a garden to protect your crop.” Where do Asheville’s roughly 200 bears figure in my tree-cutting worldview? I suspect that rather than destroying bear habitat by putting up more residential and commercial buildings, we have, over the last century, actually created ideal habitat — and lots of it. Look at any photograph of Asheville’s new suburbs a hundred years ago and notice how much open space there was: nowhere for bears to hole up or hide or eat. Yes, today’s ubiquitous trash cans and bird feeders have contributed to the unsettling proximity of 300-pound, free-range omnivores to our pets and children. But so have trees. By letting the urban forest become too dense over the last several generations, and by failing to clear away the underbrush bears love, we have invited them back in from the wilderness. I plead guilty to this practice: By planting small fruit trees and grapevines all around my center city home 10 years ago, I helped put out the welcome mat for bears — and now I’m sorry I did. Earlier this year, the Asheville City Council voted not to allocate some $354,000 for “urban forest protection” (see “Symposium Renews Call for Urban Tree Protections,” Nov. 13 Xpress), and this came on the heels of years of prior tree neglect. So until such time as the city revisits its investment in nurturing the urban tree canopy, it may be up to homeowners, rental managers and business owners to tackle the job themselves. For starters, look around your own space and consider which of the following steps you could take, despite the lack of an urban forester on the city staff: • Clear away the seedlings that sprout every year, and remove small “volunteer” trees crowded within shrubbery or beneath larger specimens. • Remove brush from around trees and buildings. Keep rain gutters free of the vegetation that often collects there, and use the Asheville App to report any storm drains that are clogged with debris; this can help keep trees from sprouting in places where they don’t belong. • Invest in regular professional care to limb up mature trees and keep the canopy judiciously thinned for optimal health; top-heavy trees are more vulnerable to wind damage. • Choose tree species carefully, and consider not planting the fruit trees that attract bears. Asheville’s love affair with vegetation may not be a good thing for the
“The thought of simply planting 19,000 more trees in Asheville makes me shudder.” city’s tree canopy. I worry that blindly planting thousands more trees may be the politically correct — but not necessarily the most sensible — course of action. What Asheville might turn out to need, in the event that city leaders did decide to fund an urban forester, is a lot of expensive tree maintenance or removal. Is everyone ready for that?
Sometimes it’s hard to see the trees for the forest. X Nan K. Chase has served as chair of the Boone Community Appearance Commission (which oversaw the local Tree Board) and as a member of the Historic Resources Commission of Asheville and Buncombe County.
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NEED OR ‘INVASION’?
Crossroads at West Asheville debate continued to Jan. 23
BY MARK BARRETT firstname.lastname@example.org West Asheville residents and the developers who want to put 802 apartments plus retail and office space on the southern edge of the community won’t know until next year whether a key county board will give the project a thumbs up. Crossroads at West Asheville would bring buildings and roads to what is now a virtual island of fields and forest off South Bear Creek Road and significantly increase the number of rental units available in Buncombe County. It has become a flashpoint for residents worried about overdevelopment, loss of green space and traffic congestion but has gained support from some people who favor a boost to the local housing supply. Crossroads would be among the largest development projects of its kind in Buncombe County history. The process of deciding whether to approve it may set its own record for length, with the county Board of Adjustment so far taking close to 10 hours spread across two meetings a month apart. And it is not over yet. Before an overflow crowd, the board heard testimony and debate for about seven hours on Dec. 11. In the face of estimates that the meeting could stretch past midnight, the board delayed the rest of the discussion to Thursday, Jan. 23. “I think we’re just getting overwhelmed and we’re getting tired,” said board member Dot Cordell. Community debate over Crossroads has been building for weeks. The Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway
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STOP SIGN: Neighbors say rush-hour traffic backs up at the intersection of South Bear Creek Road, foreground, and Sand Hill Road near the site of the proposed Crossroads at West Asheville development. Developers say they would have a traffic signal installed. Photo by Mark Barrett issued a statement Nov. 8 opposing the current plans and asking for changes while Buncombe Citizens Concerned About Crossroads recently set up a website voicing their worries. “STOP THE INVASION,” implores a flyer distributed by opponents. On the other side are developers Catalyst Capital Partners of Charlotte, who say their plans treat the 68-acre site with respect, and those who argue that increasing the supply of housing will reduce upward pressure on already high apartment prices.
“We have a dire need of additional housing in Buncombe County,” attorney Lou Bissette, who represents the developers, told the Board of Adjustment on Dec. 11. “Of the people who come to work every day in Buncombe County, 40% of them commute in from other counties, and they do that because of a lack of adequate housing in Buncombe County.” IN THE COUNTY, NEAR THE CITY The Crossroads site is unusual in being a large piece of undeveloped land along-
side a freeway that lies only about 3 1/2 miles from the center of Asheville. Its grassy fields and stands of large hardwoods are bounded by Hominy Creek to the east and north, South Bear Creek Road and Crossroads Church to the west and Interstate 240 to the south. The church, which owns much of the property, would remain after development is completed. Much of the land is low-lying and susceptible to flooding. Most of the 16 principal buildings on the site would be outside the 100-year flood plain, and the five to be built partially or entirely within it would be elevated 2 feet above flood level. About a mile of greenway, with a gravel path open to the public, would run alongside Hominy Creek. A cityowned greenway lies on the opposite bank of Hominy Creek for part of that distance. Getting approval from the Board of Adjustment is probably the biggest hurdle Crossroads must clear, although other regulatory agencies will also review specific aspects of the plan. Whatever decision the board makes could be appealed in Superior Court. The land to the north, east and west of the site is inside Asheville city limits and holds several residential neighborhoods, but the site is in Buncombe County’s zoning jurisdiction. State law gives most North Carolina municipalities zoning authority over property up to a mile, and sometimes more, outside their limits. However, the state General Assembly took that power away from Asheville in 2013 at the urging of then-Reps. Tim Moffitt and Nathan Ramsey, both Republicans.
Landscape architect Jason Gilliland said the greenway path fits into Buncombe County’s plans to extend a greenway westward to Enka-Candler. The process of governments developing greenways has been “painfully slow,” he said, taking up to five years or more and hundreds of thousands of dollars. Developers proposed installing traffic signals at two closely spaced intersections on Bear Creek and South Bear Creek roads just to the northwest of the site, and the state Department of
Transportation plans to increase travel lanes at Brevard Road’s interchanges with I-240 and Interstate 40 as part of the I-26 Connector project. Jeff Moore, a traffic engineer hired by the developers, said those changes will make traffic flow at those intersections better in 10 years than it would if Crossroads and the road improvements aren’t built. DOT plans say a contract for the I-26 Connector, which will include a new crossing of the French Broad River near downtown and widen-
ing I-240 in West Asheville, will be awarded during its 2020-21 fiscal year. But John Noor, an attorney for the Crossroads opponents, noted that the project has been studied and postponed for years. He said Moore couldn’t be certain when improvements along Brevard Road will happen or exactly what they will be.
CONTINUES ON PAGE 12
X MARKS THE NOT: Opponents of the proposed Crossroads at West Asheville development have distributed this flyer. It is unclear where the traffic photo was taken. Photo by Mark Barrett TAILORED TO THE LAND? Nearly 250 people turned out for the Dec. 11 Board of Adjustment meeting. They heard developers and their representatives detail efforts to eliminate adverse impacts on the land, as well as neighbors and residents voice worries about the floods of water — and of vehicles — they said Crossroads will worsen. A.J. Klenk, a principal with developer Catalyst, noted that Crossroads Church publicly stated in the early 1990s that it would eventually sell adjoining property that it did not need. Bissette said the apartments would rent at market rates and some would be set aside as senior citizen housing. The church, Klenk noted, has rejected proposals from other companies to level the hill on the property, fill in areas close to Hominy Creek and build high-end single-family homes or put a Sam’s Club or Walmart on the land. He added that the church chose Catalyst partly because its plans are more inclusive, have less impact on the land and meet community needs. Engineer Chris Day with Civil Design Concepts said Catalyst was the only developer proposing a public amenity like the greenway and that the buildings, generally two or four stories, would be clustered away from Hominy Creek to reduce land disturbance. All but one structure would be at least 150 feet from neighboring residents’ property lines, he said. MOUNTAINX.COM
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
N EWS NEIGHBORLY UNWELCOME Neighbors and their attorneys told the board that Crossroads would harm their property values and quality of life. As South Bear Creek Road resident Jolene Elkins spoke, television screens showed a pleasant photograph of part of the Crossroads site, a mowed field in the foreground with some large trees farther away. “I will lose that view, which is the primary reason I purchased that property,” she said. Bennett Corpening said that Mount Pisgah can be seen from his mother’s home on Shelburne Road today. If Crossroads is built, “Basically, we’re going to be looking up at these large buildings to the west,” he said. And Jacob McLean, a water resources engineer who lives in the Malvern Hills neighborhood near the site, said Crossroads will increase flooding problems and pollutants washing into Hominy Creek. Crossroads Church and a few buildings near the Crossroads site are already considered flood prone, he said. Development in the flood plain will reduce the land’s capacity to store floodwaters during a storm, resulting in higher floods and faster flowing water on and near the site, he explained. The developers currently propose building basins for ponds and other detention areas to hold runoff. McLean said the basins meet the state’s legal requirements but that state regulators consider them a
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UNDER REVIEW: Kate Millar, incoming head of the Malvern Hills Neighborhood Association, looks over photographs of the area around the proposed Crossroads at West Asheville development as she testifies against the project at a Dec. 11 meeting of the Buncombe County Board of Adjustment. Photo by Mark Barrett “substandard” method for dealing with pollutants in stormwater. Traffic experts hired by project opponents won’t get to speak until the next board meeting in January. But Kate Millar, incoming president of the Malvern Hills Neighborhood Association, said the area already sees major traffic backups at peak times. Elkins predicted more congestion as well. “I just don’t see a two-lane road handling” traffic, she said. X
What could be at the Crossroads Here are the key components of the Crossroads at West Asheville project, according to documents developers submitted to Buncombe County government. Site: The 68-acre property is at 20 S. Bear Creek Road. The land, a mix of woods and fields, lies just north of Interstate 240 on the edge of West Asheville. Bounded by Hominy Creek, South Bear Creek Road and I-240, the site wraps around the campus of Crossroads Church like a backwards “C.” About 28 acres would be left undisturbed. Buildings: The plan includes 802 apartment units, 14,400 square feet of retail space, 50,400 square feet of office space and a 64,000-square-foot self-storage business spread across 16 primary buildings and six smaller structures. The buildings would typically be two or four stories tall. Some of the apartments would be set aside as senior citizen housing. Roads: Two entrances would be located off South Bear Creek Road — one close to the bridge over Hominy Creek, another farther south — both connecting to a circular road. The existing entrance to Crossroads Church would be removed and replaced with a new one on the circular road. Traffic changes: The developers would install traffic signals, crosswalks and pedestrian signals at the Bear Creek Road/Wendover Road/Sand Hill Road intersection and traffic signals at the South Bear Creek Road/Sand Hill Road intersection. Greenway: About 1 mile of new greenway would parallel Hominy Creek. This construction would include a gravel path, 6 to 8 feet wide, that would be open to the public. Timeline: The project would be built in phases, with construction of the first part to begin in spring 2020 and take about two years. Final completion for all components could take up to 10 years. X
Activists protest New Belgium’s pending sale
DECISION TIME: New Belgium Brewing Co. employee/owners, as seen at their 2015 company retreat. Each shareholder has a say in whether the company will sell to Kirin Holdings Co. Ltd. subsidiary Lion Little World Beverages. Photo courtesy of New Belgium Brewing Co. New Belgium Brewing Co.’s pending sale to Kirin Holdings Co. Ltd. subsidiary Lion Little World Beverages is drawing criticism from human rights groups in Asheville and Fort Collins, Colo., the corporate headquarters for New Belgium. The point of conflict is Kirin’s relationship with Myanmar Economic Holdings Ltd., a military-run conglomerate that has been linked by a United Nations fact-finding mission with acts of genocide against the Rohingya people of Myanmar (formerly Burma) — a stateless Muslim minority — as well as crimes against humanity against other ethnic minorities of Myanmar, including the Karen people. Kirin and MEHL jointly own Myanmar Brewery, the country’s largest beer manufacturer. With time running out before New Belgium’s employee/owner vote to approve the sale was to conclude on Dec. 17, a protest organized by the Fort Collins Community Action Network took place on Dec. 14 outside the brewery’s headquarters. Meanwhile, the Karen Community of North Carolina and the Karen Organization of America, in conjunction with Ashevillebased ally Inclusive Development International, issued an open letter to New Belgium employees on Dec. 10, urging them “to stand for human rights and justice” and “vote no to Kirin’s acquisition” of the brewery.
In an August report, the U.N. Independent International Fact-Finding Mission on Myanmar urged “consumers, investors and firms at home and abroad” to “sever ties with Myanmar’s military and the vast web of companies it controls and relies on.” The U.N. mission’s report concludes that the military’s earnings from domestic and foreign business contracts bolster “its ability to carry out gross violations of human rights with impunity.” New Belgium co-founder Kim Jordan met with protesters, including refugees from Myanmar, inside New Belgium’s Fort Collins headquarters on Dec. 14. After the protest, New Belgium executives issued a joint statement to Greeley, Colo.-based public radio station KUNC. “We were very grateful and humbled to have heard the personal stories of the refugees,” the joint statement said. “Going forward, we will continue conversations with this group and are seeking out additional advisers to be as informed as possible on this important subject matter, especially if we have the opportunity to express our values on a global platform.” Kirin also issued a statement, saying the company takes “these matters very seriously” and that “respect for human rights is fundamental to all of our business activities. ... Consistent with Kirin’s ongoing monitoring of the situation, we will now conduct a fur-
ther examination of our operations and relationships in Myanmar.” A separate statement from New Belgium touts the U.S. brewery’s status as “an ethical organization” with “a 29-year history of proving that business can be a force for good.” It also notes that New Belgium “has had a seat at the table with Lion and Kirin in identifying a path forward that addresses our shared concerns,” which “will involve a further examination of Kirin’s operations and relationships in Myanmar, under the auspices of Kirin’s International Advisory Board.” According to the statement, Jordan has been invited to participate in this process. “We appreciate that our friends and fans are raising concerns around Kirin’s business in Myanmar, [but] this news is certainly unsettling,” New Belgium’s statement says. “We believe Kirin shares our commitment to human rights and we will continue to champion humanity and equity within all our relationships. Our view remains that the partnership with Lion Little World Beverages is the right one to take [New Belgium] into the future, and we have a firm commitment from Kirin that our own commitment to doing the right thing by our coworkers, promoting innovation and excellence in beer, and being a business role model will continue to thrive under this new ownership.”
— Edwin Arnaudin X
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South Slope development approved despite traffic concerns I’ve heard that that individual is not worried. I think what I heard him say is that it wasn’t considered. That’s a big difference,” Smith said. “We’re already desperate for an improved transportation system and we can’t take another hit.” Tribute subsequently agreed to include $30,000 in funding to be used toward traffic calming measures, such as speed humps, if requested by nearby neighborhoods or the city. Construction is anticipated to begin in summer 2020 and last three years. IN OTHER NEWS
WELCOME TO THE NEIGHBORHOOD: Asheville City Council approved a 488-unit mixeduse development for the city’s South Slope. The project also contains 973 parking spaces for residents. Graphic by Tribute Companies “We need more housing in the city; we need more housing downtown. This is not displacing old historic buildings — this is taking old parking lots and making them into housing. It’s got a significant affordable housing component. It’s got office space,” said Council member Vijay Kapoor. “It’s got all of the things that I think we really, truly need in a project.” While Smith said she supported many aspects of the project, she remained concerned about how its associated traffic
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Downtown traffic is about to get a lot worse, according to Asheville City Council member Sheneika Smith. “Because this project is so massive and we’ve already accommodated for almost 1,000 parking spaces — which is equivalent to, we’ll say, 500 vehicles flowing up and down this major area where our bus terminal is — I can already bet this is going to be a disaster,” Smith said. The subject of Smith’s worries was a 488-unit mixed-use development for Asheville’s South Slope, which Council members approved in a 5-1 decision on Dec. 10. Smith was the sole vote in opposition to the project, with Mayor Esther Manheimer recusing herself due to the involvement of her law firm. The nearly 4.5acre plan also contains 86,000 square feet of commercial and office space and a 973-space parking deck. According to a staff report, the project, brought before Council by Wilmington-based developer Tribute Companies, includes 49 affordable single-bedroom units that will be offered to households earning up to 80% of the area median income ($53,120 for a family of four) for 20 years. The developer will also commit to adding 145 trees to the property — more than four times as many as required by current building code standards — to create an “urban forest effect.”
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would impact the on-time performance of city buses. City Traffic Engineer Andrew Cibor told Council members that traffic studies conducted for the development had examined overall traffic delays and did not specifically consider bus performance. However, he added that the city’s Transportation Department had not raised concerns directly related to transit. “I do believe it was just a blind spot. But in noting that it is a blind spot, our traffic expert from the city, I don’t think
After being added only hours before the meeting, Council pulled a climate emergency resolution drafted by the city’s Sustainability Advisory Committee on Energy and the Environment from the agenda. Committee members had called an emergency meeting on Dec. 9 to finalize their iteration of the resolution after negotiations with members of Sunrise Movement Asheville, who had demanded a vote on a different version, fell apart in recent weeks. The decision to pull the agenda item came at Sunrise’s request after representatives agreed to resume talks with SACEE. Council is expected to take up the issue again in January.
— Brooke Randle X
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ASHEVILLE ARCHIVES by Thomas Calder | email@example.com
‘A man of great force’ The life and work of Lucius B. Compton On June 9, 1911, a brief notice appeared in The Asheville Citizen. That evening, under a large tent at the corner of Patton Avenue and Haywood Street, the Rev. Lucius B. Compton was to host a revival. In less than a year, the religious leader’s reputation as “an attractive speaker,” would earn the Haywood County native a growing and devoted audience. But despite his emerging popularity, much of the minister’s work remained hidden in plain sight. On Sept. 5, 1914, The Gazette News wrote: “There is an institution in this section, located about four and a half miles west of Asheville, known as the Eliada orphanage founded nine years ago by Rev. Lucius B. Compton, which is doing a work that perhaps is little known to the people in general, owing to the quiet and orderly way in which the workers are devoting themselves to their tasks.” The article appeared in print in the midst of Compton’s latest revival, which attracted an estimated 100 visitors. By then, the services were no longer held downtown, but on-site at Eliada Orphanage (today’s Eliada). In the same day’s paper, Ulysses Lewis, an Atlanta-based attorney attending the religious gathering, offered his thoughts to The Gazette News. “Mr. Compton is a remarkable man of God,” he declared. “He is a man of great force and earnestness, and while he does not care for grammar nor rhetoric, grips his hearers with mental and spiritual power[.]” By 1919, attendance more than tripled, as 300 visitors converged on Asheville, seeking salvation at the annual revival. According to the Sept. 2 edition of The Asheville Citizen, folks came from 14 states, as well as parts of Canada. Many set up tents on the property, while others stayed at nearby boardinghouses and hotels. “The camp site itself presented animated scenes,” the paper read, describing a yoke of oxen corralled next to “the purring motor of a big twin-six.” Other means of transportation included “bicycles and motorcycles, costly cars and expensive automobiles, buggies and carriages, covered wagons and open carts” scattered throughout the campground.
ABROAD: In 1912, the Rev. Lucius B. Compton toured parts of Asia, Africa and England. According to contemporaneous news reports, an extended stay in England, where this photo was taken, saved the minister from the doomed Titanic voyage. Photo courtesy of Eliada The paper went on to note that Eliada housed roughly 50 boys and girls. “Of their activities little is given out,” the article stated. “Mr. Compton is not a friend of the reporters. He knows nothing of the arts of a press agent.” Despite his apparent opposition to the media, Compton eventually opened up to reporters. On Aug. 23, 1931, local author Virginia Terrell Lathrop interviewed the minister for a feature in the Sunday edition of the Asheville Citizen-Times. “I knew if God didn’t care for us, we couldn’t last,” Compton told Terrell Lathrop while discussing Eliada’s start. The orphanage, Terrell Lathrop informed readers, began in a singleroom cabin situated on 4 acres. By 1931, she wrote, it was “an institution of five buildings … [on] 230 acres of ground,” with over 270 children having passed through the home. Compton’s string of good headlines shifted in 1943, when he was indicted by a Buncombe County grand jury on
four counts of assault with intent to commit rape. On June 18, Compton resigned as president and general manager of Eliada. That October, Judge Felix E. Alley dismissed charges of intent to rape, due to insufficient evidence. The lesser assault charges remained. The trial for one of the four counts took place that month. The accuser, a 14-year-old girl, testified that Compton touched her breasts on three separate occasions before trying to induce her into an abandoned cottage on the Eilada property. While on the stand, Compton described his affections toward the children at Eliada as “a little abnormal.” He continued, “There is not one of them that I have not held on my knee and kissed many times. I have never in all my life had an evil thought or desire when I put my hands on one of those children.” The day after both testimonies, Compton was found not guilty. All additional charges were dropped by the prosecution, The Asheville Citizen reported. Upon the defense’s request, Judge Alley declared a direct verdict of not guilty in all three untried assault claims. Compton was reinstated as the president and general manager of Eliada in early November. Five years later, on Dec. 13, 1948, the minister died at the age of 73. “Although he had almost no formal education, Mr. Compton was known as an outstanding Bible scholar,” his obituary read. At the time of his death, Eliada housed an estimated 68 students, the paper reported. “More than 1,000 young people have grown to maturity under his guidance,” the paper reported. X
A statement from Eliada
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In response to this week’s Asheville Archives, Nora Scheff, development officer at Eliada, requested to share the following statement: “Today, Eliada is a child-serving organization helping the most vulnerable young people in our region. On an annual basis, we serve over 600 children 0-25 years old through mental health services, foster care and early education. We continue the legacy of our founder and each individual who has worked hard for the past 116 years to help 'the least, the last and the lost.’” X
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FEA T U RE S
by Kay West
NEVER NOTHING When Jackie Simms overheard a conversation her young daughter was having with friends years ago, it changed the course of both their lives. “One of her friends told the others that she was Jewish and asked the other girls what they were,” Simms recalls. “Another little girl said, ‘I’m Catholic. What are you?’ Another girl said, ‘I’m Baptist. What are you?’ and then I heard my daughter, Charis, say, ‘I’m nothing.’ Well, I don’t care what the question is, my child is never nothing!” Simms had been raised Methodist, but as an adult she found she didn’t subscribe to the church’s teachings, particularly belief in a supernatural deity. And she could not, in good conscience, take her daughter to a religious institution she didn’t believe in. “Hypocrisy is close to one of the seven original sins to me, and I did not want to appear in my daughter’s eyes to believe in something I did not believe.” Meanwhile, a conversation with a friend who’d grown up in the Ethical
ON THE BEAT: LivingPulse founder Dan Collins, standing, addressed participants at the group's inaugural event, held in September at Timber Hall in Leicester. Photo by Jesse Kitt
Christmas Eve Services Tuesday, December 24 5 PM | A Night Like No Other – Service for all ages Calling all angels, shepherds, and wise women and men: This service is full of joy and wonder with carols, stories of the first Christmas, and all the children of Grace Covenant taking part! Kids, arrive a little early to pick out your costume.
9 PM | Candlelight Communion Service The 9:00 PM service will include Holy Communion as we gather to celebrate the Nativity of our Lord. Music begins at 8:30 PM. Trusting that God’s grace embraces and desires covenant with all people, Grace Covenant seeks to be an inclusive and hospitable place of spiritual growth. All persons are welcomed into this fellowship and membership regardless of age, sexual orientation, gender, ethnic or racial identity, economic position, residency status, or political affiliation. We trust that God is always at work transforming each life and our life together, helping us to better follow Christ’s example of love and courageous welcome.
Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church 789 Merrimon Avenue, Asheville, NC 28804
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DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
Ashevilleans seek religion without a deity
Society of St. Louis and had a daughter Charis’ age pointed Simms in a different direction. “Ginger told me she’d be teaching the first grade Sunday school class there and invited Charis. I was very comfortable with the class and what she was teaching, and in 1978 I became a member.” The Ethical Culture movement dates back to May 15,1876, when Felix Adler delivered the founding address in New York City. Adler had studied to be a rabbi like his father, a German immigrant who led the city’s largest synagogue, but he wound up following a decidedly different path. In his inaugural address, Adler spoke of a “new religion of morality, whose God was the good, whose church was the universe, whose heaven was on earth and not in the clouds.” The American Ethical Union, an umbrella organization for the movement, is still headquartered in New York. Fast forward to 1990, when Simms moved here. She first explored the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville, which left her feeling comfortable but not fulfilled. So in 2001, she teamed up with Don Johnson to launch the Ethical Humanist Society of Asheville, a nontheist alternative to traditional religion for people seeking to live an ethical, responsible and joyful life and to cultivate ethical behavior in their community. Johnson, the former
head of the New York Society for Ethical Culture (the group founded by Adler) had retired here. NOT THE RIGHT FIT The American Ethical Union let Simms know when people with an Ethical Culture background relocated here so she could reach out to them. Jim Tobin, a retired pediatrician who moved to Asheville in 2003, is the local group’s current president. He found out about it through the Building Bridges program, where Simms’ husband, Fred, was a facilitator. “I was raised secular Baptist, and I learned a lot of good things there, but there were many things I was skeptical about,” says Tobin. “I tried UUA, but it wasn’t quite the right fit.” The Ethical Humanist Society, which has grown from about eight to 35 members, meets twice a month at the Asheville Friends Meeting House. First Sundays feature a “colloquy” — a guided discussion with time for reflection — as well as music and readings. These are usually conducted by Joy McConnell, a certified Ethical Humanist leader. On the third Sunday of the month there’s a platform presentation by one or more speakers; past topics include “Good Without God,” “Growing Up African American in Segregated Asheville” and “Sustainability Through Mindfulness.”
“The key thing here is working from your own sense of authenticity and integrity.” — the Rev. Mark Ward, Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville “First-timers are typically drawn to a platform meeting, and then they might come back for colloquy,” notes Tobin. “If they feel comfortable, they may decide to join. We are open to everyone: We have a member who is Roman Catholic, another from the secular Judaism group here, and members of UUA.” The Rev. Mark Ward, lead minister of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville, says his tradition welcomes everyone. “There is no central theology and no central affirmation of deity or not.” AUTHENTICITY FIRST Unitarian Universalism was born when two separate denominations dating back to the late 18th and early 19th century, respectively, consolidated in 1961. Both, notes Ward, began as essentially Christian churches, though they
were considered liberal offshoots and eventually moved away from what he calls Christian consensus. “It is our understanding that religious truth evolves, changes over time, and we each have our own unique experiences that guide what brings us to religion.” That spiritual impulse, he continues, is what “makes us ask the big questions: Who am I? Where did I come from? How am I related to the rest of the universe?” But in Ward’s tradition, “We don’t have a doctrine that says there is God or there isn’t God. There is a diversity of religious expression here, and we embrace that. We have people here who grew up in other denominations; we have people who are agnostic and people who are atheist. The key thing here is working from your own sense of authenticity and integrity.”
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FEA T U RE S To a visitor, however, the Asheville congregation, which counts about 500 members, looks and feels much like more mainstream places of worship: a sanctuary furnished with pews; a fellowship hall and classrooms; an order of service that includes readings, music, a sermon, meditation and an offering; classes for children, youths and adults; outreach within the church, in the community and in the larger world. “We came from the Christian tradition,” says Ward. “We have our Seven Principles and we have our Six Sources, and one of our sources is Jewish and Christian teachings. I use Scripture at times but not every week. We may bring in the Bible, but we don’t privilege it. ... If I’m using the word God, I’m more likely to connect it with love: I’m not thinking of a white man in the clouds.” A HUNGER TO BELONG Stan Binder was raised “essentially in the Orthodox Jewish tradition” on Manhattan’s Lower East Side, but as an adult, he found the God-focused prayers had no meaning for him.
RICH IN MEANING: In the sanctuary of the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville on Edwin Place, symbols evoke spirituality and an appreciation of the natural world rather than traditional religious imagery. Photo by Virginia Daffron Unable to pray to a God he didn’t believe in, Binder walked away from the religion, though he remained immersed in New York Jewish culture. When a friend who had a house in Asheville urged him to consider retiring here, Binder was skeptical. But after doing some research, he decided “I could live in a place that has a HardLox Festival!”
In Asheville, Binder met like-minded Jews: emigrants from bigger cities who were seeking community. “I think the majority of us sampled the synagogues here but, for various reasons, they didn’t appeal,” he says. At the same time, however, “We missed the culture, the traditions, the holidays and the food: We are Jewish to the core.” About seven years ago, Binder became a founding member of the Jewish Secular Community of Asheville, one of 25 or so such groups across the country. “We concentrate more on helping each other, being friends to the world and having a humanistic core, versus praying to a higher being or supernatural authority,” says Binder, who currently serves as president of the Executive Committee. There is no rabbi; instead, the Ritual Committee takes responsibility for services, which are led by a layperson. The group’s 125 members are mostly retired, and at least half attend the monthly Shabbat service held at the Abiding Savior Lutheran Church in Fairview. They gather for Jewish holidays such as Hanukkah and Rosh Hashana, often use the Jewish Community Center on Charlotte Street for meetings, and have very active social justice groups and outreach efforts. “We are a community that loves to come together,” he says, adding, “We all want to belong to something.” FINDING A HOME For many years, Dan Collins wasn’t sure where he belonged when it came to his personal faith. “I grew up going to Catholic schools and was a good little altar boy,” he says. “But early on I realized I could not sustain those beliefs and was left with a void.”
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
As a boy, Collins found solace in nature, spending a lot of solitary time in the woods. He later studied Eastern spirituality and explored what he calls natural spirituality. Attempts at traditional meditation were frustrated by his inability to quiet his mind. But when he took up trail running, Collins found a space and a pace where he could shut down his mind and get into a meditative place. “It was in being active that I could achieve meditation,” he explains. As Collins got older, however, he began seeking ways to reach that place that were easier on the body, such as drumming and kayaking. Earlier this year, that same impulse prompted him to create LivingPulse as a way to find kindred souls in Asheville. “It’s a spiritual organization and a completely different way of thinking of God,” Collins explains. “In the simplest terms, God should not be thought of as the creator but the creation. How do we understand how we are one with all of creation, feel it and experience it?” To that end, Collins recruited an assortment of “guides” — including his drum instructor, a movement leader, a painter, a trail runner, a musician and a yoga instructor — to assist at LivingPulse’s inaugural event, held Sept. 29 at Timber Hall in Leicester. Nearly 90 people came to experience what he calls a “tasting menu.” “Let’s have a taste of each activity and, in between, discussion of spirituality and science. People were very engaged and stayed after for further discussion, so now I am looking at future events and how to gather and support a community of people who have a need for spirituality but are unable to sustain a belief in traditional practices and faiths,” Collins reports. That kind of wide-ranging ecumenicalism seems to underlie these various attempts to find a nondogmatic, nontheistic approach to the quest for community, core values and deep connection. Unitarian Universalists, notes Ward, “don’t say this is the only truth.” His parishioners typically see Jesus not “as the son of God but as a precious teacher. But there are people here who do have a personal sense of God and even pray to that.” In the end, he continues, “Some people will find a home here, and others won’t.” And if some folks find it hard to understand why people who reject mainstream religion might still end up finding religion, Simms puts it this way: “One of the definitions of religion is something central to your life: the central values you live by. Ethical Humanism is so central to my life and my values, it is my religion.” X
COMMUNITY CALENDAR DEC. 18 - 26, 2019
CALENDAR GUIDELINES For a full list of community calendar guidelines, please visit mountainx.com/calendar. For questions about free listings, call 828-251-1333, ext. 137. For questions about paid calendar listings, please call 828-251-1333, ext. 320.
=❄ ANIMALS ASHEVILLE ANIMAL RIGHTS READING GROUP • 3rd FRIDAYS, 6-7:30pm - Animal Rights Reading Group. Free to attend. Held at Firestorm Books & Coffee, 610 Haywood Road Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
BENEFITS CHRISTMAS ALBUM LAUNCH ❄ SU (12/22), 4-6pm - Proceeds from the Andrew Finn Magill Christmas concert benefit Asheville Humane Soceity. Admission by donation. Held at All Souls Cathedral, 9 Swan St. DECK THE TREES ❄ Through MO (1/6), 10am-9pm - Proceeds from Deck The Trees in the theme of Go Tell It On the Mountain benefit the Fuel Fund for the Swannanoa Valley Christian Ministries. Free to attend. Held at Monte Vista Hotel, 308 W. State St., Black Mountain QUEEN'S FROSTED BALL ❄ SU (12/22), 3:30pm - Proceeds from the Queen's Frosted Ball with portraits with Santa, karaoke, holiday
crafts, princess makeovers, photo booths, refreshments and 4pm concert with the Frosted Sisters benefit the Be the Good Fund. $25$75. Held at Crowne Plaza Expo Center, 1 Resort Drive Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
BUSINESS & TECHNOLOGY FLETCHER AREA BUSINESS ASSOCIATION • 4th THURSDAYS, 11:30-noon - General meeting. Free. Held at YMCA Mission Pardee Health Campus, 2775 Hendersonville Road, Arden MOUNTAIN BIZWORK YEAR END CELEBRATION ❄ WE (12/18), 6-9pm - Year end celebration with refreshments, desserts and drinks. Registration required. Free. Held at Center for Craft, 67 Broadway
CLASSES, MEETINGS & EVENTS EMPYREAN ARTS CLASSES (PD.) Intro to Handstands on Thursdays 7:45pm. Intro to Partner Acrobatics on Sundays 6:30pm. Intro to Pole Fitness on Mondays 6:15pm, Tuesdays 7:15pm and Saturdays 11:30am.
WHISKERED ANGELS: The Asheville Humane Society hosts a Cat Café featuring Kimberlie Hamilton, who presents her book Fearless Felines: 30 True Tales of Courageous Cats. Cat Café is planned for Thursday, Dec. 19, at the adoption denter. Time slots can be purchased at ashevillehumane.org/catcafe for $10 and are available at 3, 4 or 5 p.m. For $10, you get one hour of cat cuddle time and a complimentary, nonalchoholic beverage. Hamilton discusses her book and asks trivia questions for which there are prizes. Space is limited. Books available for sale. (p. 22) Release & Restore on Sundays 5:00pm and Wednesdays 7:30pm. empyreanarts.org • 828.782.3321 AUTISTICS UNITED BOWLING • SA (12/21), noon3pm - Spectrum-wide bowling social. $3 per game. Held at Sky Lanes, 1477 Patton Ave. BIG IVY COMMUNITY CENTER BOARD MEETING • 4th MONDAYS, 7pm - Community center board meeting. Free. Held at Big Ivy Community Center, 540 Dillingham Road, Barnardsville BUDGETING AND DEBT • TH (12/19), 5:30-7pm - Budgeting and Debt, class. Registration required. Free. Held at OnTrack WNC, 50 S. French Broad Ave.
BUNCOMBE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES
LEICESTER HISTORY GATHERING
• 4th TUESDAYS, 6-8pm - Sit-n-Stitch, informal, self-guided gathering for knitters and crocheters. Held at North Asheville Library, 1030 Merrimon Ave.
• 3rd THURSDAYS, 7pm - The Leicester History Gathering, general meeting. Free. Held at Leicester Community Center, 2979 New Leicester Highway, Leicester
COMMUNITY ADVISORY COMMITTEE FOR ADULT CARE HOMES • 3rd FRIDAYS, 9-10:30am - Committee meeting. Registration: julia@landofsky. org. Free. Held at Land of Sky Regional Council Offices, 339 New Leicester Highway, Suite 140
MARINE CORPS LEAGUE ASHEVILLE • 4th TUESDAYS, 6pm - For veterans of the Marines, FMF Corpsmen and their families. Free. Held at American Legion Post #2, 851 Haywood Road
HOMINY VALLEY RECREATION PARK • 3rd THURSDAYS, 7pm - Hominy Valley board meeting. Free. Held at Hominy Valley Recreation Park, 25 Twin Lakes Drive, Candler
Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
ECO CULTURAL CRASH COURSE • WE (12/18), 5:308pm - Cli-Fi: The New
Genre of Climate Change Fiction, presentation by Dr. Laura Wright. Registration required. $9. Held at Folkmoot Friendship Center, 112 Virginia Ave., Waynesville Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
FARM & GARDEN ADVANCED ENTERPRISE DEVELOPMENT (PD.) THU. FEB 6TH 3PM-7PM. Advanced Enterprise Development will dig into enterprise development and help farmers understand the factors that influence farm profitability, assess recordkeeping and farm documentation in order to enhance their farm financial
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
COM M U N I TY CA LEN DA R
picture. https:// organicgrowersschool.org/farmers/ advanced-enterprisedevelopment/ IMPROVING FARM COMMUNICATIONS (PD.) JAN. 12 & JAN. 19. 10AM-4PM. In Improving Farm Communication workshop participants will use real life farm situations to learn communication styles, how to have better conversations, and practice new skills. For farmers and employees on farms. https://organicgrowersschool.org/ farmers/improvingfarm-communications/ POLK COUNTY FRIENDS OF AGRICULTURE BREAKFAST • 3rd WEDNESDAYS, 7-8am - Monthly breakfast with presentations on agriculture. Admission by donation. Held at Green
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
Creek Community Center, 25 Shields Road, Columbus
FOOD & BEER CHRISTMAS MEAL
MO (12/24), noon - Free Christmas meal for those in need sponsored by the Salvation Army. Free. Held at Center of Hope, 204 Haywood St. HELP 4 HENDO • MO (12/23), 9amnoon - Saluda Hair Garage offers free haircuts, Sanctuary: food, Humane Society: pet supplies, Free Clinics: information and services and Goodwill: employment skills. Also clothing and toiletries for those in need. Held at Sanctuary Brewing Co., 147 1st Ave., Hendersonville
by Deborah Robertson WELCOME TABLE FREE MEAL • WEDNESDAYS, 11:30am-1pm Welcome Table, community meal. Free. Held at Leicester Community Center, 2979 New Leicester Highway, Leicester
FESTIVALS FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS ❄ Through MO (12/23), 6-9pm - Drive through holiday light festival. Portion of proceeds benefit Buncombe County Special Olympics. $10 per passenger vehicle/Discount for tickets purchased in advance. Held at Lake Julian Park and Marina, 406 Overlook Extension, Arden WINTER LIGHTS EXHIBITION ❄ Through SA (1/4), 6-10pm - Winter Lights, outdoor holiday lights exhibition.
$18/$12 children/ Free under 5. Held at NC Arboretum, 100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way
GOVERNMENT & POLITICS SILENT VIGIL FOR IMMIGRATION REFORM • FR (12/20), 4-4:30pm - Progressive Alliance's monthly Silent Vigil to promote compassionate Immigration Reform policies. Held at Henderson County Courthouse, 200 N. Grove St., Hendersonville
KIDS EMPOWERING THE LEADER IN EACH YOUNG MAN (PD.) Journeymen is supporting adolescent boys on their paths to becoming men of integrity. Our cost-free program is
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71 Airport Rd. In Arden • Across from Walmart M - Sat: 10am-6pm • Sun: 12-6pm • 828.651.8900 • sleepworldnc.com HENDO HAIRCUT: Sanctuary Brewing Co., once again teams up Michael Cohen of Saluda Hair Garage to offer free haircuts. Hot meals, clothing and toiletries are also available to those in need. The event is planned for Monday, Dec. 23, 9 a.m.-noon. Donations are appreciated – items most needed are outerwear, pants and sweaters. (p. 20)
now enrolling young men 12-17. Mentees ("J-men") participate in bi-weekly mentoring groups and a semi-annual Rites of Passage Adventure Weekend, where they develop compassion, self-awareness, accountability, resilience and authenticity. Learn more: journeymenasheville. org Contact: journeymenasheville@ gmail.com (828) 771-6344. BUNCOMBE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES buncombecounty. org/governing/depts/ library • 2nd SATURDAYS, 1-4pm & LAST WEDNESDAYS, 4-6pm - Teen Dungeons and Dragons for ages 12 and up. Registration required: 828-250-4720. Free. Held at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St. • THURSDAYS, 6pm - Story time designed for children ages 3-6. Free. Held at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St. • FR (12/20), 4pm Sign up to read for
15-minutes with J.R. the therapy dog. Registration required. Free. Held at North Asheville Library, 1030 Merrimon Ave. • MO (12/23), 4pm LEGO builders, kids 5 and up. Free. Held at Weaverville Public Library, 41 N. Main St., Weaverville • 4th TUESDAYS, 1pm - Homeschoolers' book club. Held at North Asheville Library, 1030 Merrimon Ave. CHRISTMAS AT THE FARM ❄ Through SA (12/21), 10:30am1:30pm - Christmas tours at Historic Johnson Farm with hot chocolate, cookies and crafts. $5/$3 students. Held at Historic Johnson Farm, 3346 Haywood Road, Hendersonville COOKIES WITH SANTA ❄ SA (12/21), 10:3011:30am - Pajama party and cookies with Santa. Free. Held at Mountains Branch Library, 150 Bill's Creek Road, Lake Lure
SKATING RINK ❄ WE (12/18) through WE (1/1), 11am-6pm, except Christmas Eve 11am3pm, Christmas Day Closed, New Year’s Eve 11am-3pm and New Year’s Day from 1pm-6pm - Iceless ice skating. $10/$5 children 10 and under. Held at Hendersonville Visitor Center, 201 S. Main St., Hendersonville Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
OUTDOORS GRASSLAND STAR GAZE • SA (12/20), 5:20pm - A public stargazing party at a private observatory. Gate code provided the day of the star gaze by 4pm. Free. Held at Grassland Mountain Observatory, 2890 Grassland Parkway, Marshall SOLSTICE HIKE AT HOOKER FALLS ❄ SA (12/21), 8-10am - 7pm - Conserving Carolina hosts a night
hike to Hooker Falls. Free. Register: pam@ conservingcarolina. org. Meet at Hooker Falls parking lot, DuPont State Recreational Forest, Cedar Mountain SWANNANOA VALLEY BIRD WALK • SA (12/21), 9-11am - Bird walk. Free. Held at Charles D. Owen Park, 875 Warren Wilson Road, Swannanoa
PARENTING BUNCOMBE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES buncombecounty. org/governing/depts/ library • TUESDAYS, 11am - Play time with baby and toddler toys, tunnels and climbing structures. Free. Held at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St. • TUESDAYS, 11:30am - Play time with baby and toddler toys, tunnels and climbing structures. Free. Held at Fairview Library, 1 Taylor Road, Fairview
Asheville Holistic Realty Integrity • Creativity • Passion • Results 828-490-1510 | est. 2007 | AshevilleHolisticRealty.com Laughter is how your soul sings MOUNTAINX.COM
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
C OMMU N IT Y CA L EN D AR
by Deborah Robertson
ONLY TWO WEEKS LEFT! The campaign ends at midnight on Dec. 31. 2019 2 02 0 2019 2020
Book Voucher Voucher Book
Don’t delay! For the first time ever, Mountain Xpress is expecting to run out of voucher books and incentive packages. With 247 voucher books already distributed, only 153 remain. Donate $20 or more while the voucher books last at givelocalguide.org and enjoy:
• A one-topping pizza slice from Asheville Pizza and Brewing Co. • A cup of coffee from Izzy’s Coffee • Free admission for one child to the Asheville Museum of Science • A slice of pizza from Barley’s Taproom • A kiddie scoop of ice cream from Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream • An appetizer from Blue Dream Curry House • A pint glass from Highland Brewing Co. • A free sound healing group session or a group drum lesson at Skinny Beats • A pint glass from Upcountry Brewing Co. • A cup of coffee from Zuma Coffee in Marshall • One classified ad from Mountain Xpress • PLUS discounts, BOGOs and “free with purchase” offers from: • Baked Pie Co. • High Five Coffee • Diamond Brand • Mr. K’s Used Books
Next year’s Give!Local is just around the corner, and local nonprofits can apply now The application period for Give!Local 2020 is now open and interested nonprofits may apply online at avl.mx/6o8. Mountain Xpress will select a balanced group of nonprofits, with regard to organizations’ missions, sizes and service to different parts of the community. The selected group will include current and past Give!Local partners, and welcome new nonprofits. Each year, Xpress endeavors to raise awareness and funding for worthy local nonprofits and reward donors with goods and services from local businesses. If your business would like to be included in rewarding donors, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
GIVE!LOCAL NONPROFITS’ CALENDAR HIGHLIGHTS This week the Community Calendar is highlighting events that are sponsored by nonprofits that are participating in the Give!Local campaign. The campaign is raising money for 45 worthy local nonprofits that make a big difference where we live. These events are wonderful examples of some of the great work that these nonprofits do within our communities! ville Humane Society. Registration: avl.mx/6ra. $10.
ART/CRAFT STROLLS & FAIRS OPEN HEARTS ART CENTER 217 Coxe Ave. ❄ Through FR (12/20), noon-5pm - Shop Local Holiday Pop-Up Market with ceramics, cards and original art, make an ornament, live music and food and drink for sale.
ANIMALS ASHEVILLE HUMANE SOCIETY 14 Forever Friend Lane, 828-7612001, ashevillehumane.org • TH (12/19), 3pm - Proceeds from the Pop-up Cat Café with Kimberlie Hamilton presenting her book, Fearless Felines: 30 True Tales of Courageous Cats with kitty cuddle time and a beverage benefit Ashe-
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
glass ornaments benefit Open Hearts and Pisgah Legal.
public. Free to attend. Held at Hi-Wire Brewing, 197 Hilliard Ave.
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BENEFITS ASHEVILLE HUMANE SOCIETY 14 Forever Friend Lane, 828-7612001, ashevillehumane.org • TH (12/19), 3pm - Proceeds from the Pop-up Cat Café with Kimberlie Hamilton presenting her book, Fearless Felines: 30 True Tales of Courageous Cats with kitty cuddle time and a beverage benefit Asheville Humane Society. Registration: avl.mx/6ra. $10. NORTH CAROLINA GLASS CENTER 140 Roberts St., Suite B, 828-5053552, ncglasscenter.org ❄ Through TU (12/31) - 10am-6pm - Proceeds from the sale of blown
CLASSES, MEETINGS & EVENTS ASHEVILLE MUSEUM OF SCIENCE 828-254-7162, colburnmuseum.org • SUNDAYS, 2:30-4pm - Tour of the night time sky in an inflatable astronomy dome. Admission fees apply. Held at Asheville Museum of Science, 43 Patton Ave.
ECO GREEN BUILT ALLIANCE greenbuilt.org • TH (12/19), 5-7pm - Quarterly happy-hour meetup open to the
KIDS ASHEVILLE MUSEUM OF SCIENCE 828-254-7162, colburnmuseum.org • 1st & 3rd FRIDAYS, 9-10am - Little Explorer's Club, science topics for preschoolers. $7/Caregivers free. Held at Asheville Museum of Science, 43 Patton Ave. BELOVED ASHEVILLE LIBERATION STATION 10 N. Market St., belovedasheville. com • MONDAYS & THURSDAYS, 3:304:30pm - Spanish/English immersion for kids from Spanish and English speaking backgrounds to come together. Free.
email@example.com • 4th TUESDAYS, 1-3pm – Held at Newbridge Baptist Church, 199 Elkwood Ave., Woodfin
VOLUNTEERING TUTOR ADULTS/YOUTH IN NEED WITH THE LITERACY COUNCIL (PD.) litcouncil.com • 43% of adults with low literacy live in poverty. Volunteer and help our neighbors rise above the confines of poverty. Orientation 1/6 (5:30pm) or 1/9 (9am) RSVP: firstname.lastname@example.org. Learn more: www.litcouncil.com Free.
HOMEWARD BOUND OF WNC 19 N. Ann St., 828-258-1695, homewardboundwnc.org • THURSDAYS, 11am - See the Hope Tour, find out how Homeward Bound is working to end homelessness and how you can help. Registration required: email@example.com or 828-785-9840. Free. For more volunteering opportunities visit mountainx.com/volunteering
WELLNESS BELOVED ASHEVILLE LIBERATION STATION 10 N. Market St., belovedasheville. com • WEDNESDAYS, 2:30-4pm - Street medic outreach clinic. Free.
MONTFORD HOLIDAY CAMP • MO (12/23), FR (12/27), MO (12/30), TU (12/31), TH (1/2) & FR (1/3), 8:30am6pm - Asheville Parks & Recreation holds Holiday Camp for youth and teens in grades kindergarten through middle school. $50/camper and COA residents get $10 off. Held at Montford Community Center, 34 Pearson Drive STEPHENS LEE HOLIDAY CAMP • MO (12/23), FR (12/27), MO (12/30), TU (12/31), TH (1/2) & FR (1/3), 8:30am6pm - Asheville Parks & Recreation holds Holiday Camp for youth and teens in grades kindergarten through middle school. $50/camper and COA residents get $10 off. Held at Stephens Lee Recreation Center, 30 George Washington Carver Ave.
PUBLIC LECTURES CULTURAL CRASH COURSE • WE (12/18), 5:30-8pm - Cli-Fi: The New Genre of Climate Change Fiction, presentation by Dr. Laura Wright. Registration required. $9. Held at Folkmoot Friendship Center, 112 Virginia Ave., Waynesville
SENIORS ASHEVILLE NEW FRIENDS (PD.) Offers active senior residents of the Asheville area opportunities to make new friends and explore new interests through a program of varied social, cultural and outdoor activities. Visit ashevillenewfriends. org
SPIRITUALITY ANATASATI MAGGA (PD.) Sujata Yasa (Nancy Spence). Zen Buddhism. Weekly meditations and services; Daily recitations w/ mala. Urban retreats. 32 Mineral Dust Drive, Asheville, NC 28806. 828367-7718. info@ anattasatimagga. org. ANATTASATIMAGGA. ORG ASTROCOUNSELING (PD.) Licensed counselor and accredited professional astrologer uses your chart when counseling for additional insight into yourself, your relationships and life directions. Stellar Counseling Services. Christy Gunther, MA, LPC. (828) 258-3229. A COURSE IN MIRACLES STUDY GROUP • 2nd & 4th MONDAYS, 6:308:30pm - A Course in Miracles, study group. Information: 828-712-5472. Free. Held at Groce United Methodist Church, 954 Tunnel Road CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE ❄ TU (12/24), 5pm - Christmas Eve service of Advent lessons, carols and candlelight. Held at First Congregational UCC of Hendersonville, 1735 5th Ave. W., Hendersonville DANCES OF UNIVERSAL PEACE • 3rd SATURDAYS, 7:30-9:30pm Spiritual group dances that blend chanting, live music and movement. No experience necessary. Admission by donation. Held at Haw Creek Commons, 311 Old Haw Creek Road
EARLY 1800S CHRISTMAS EVE CANDLELIGHT SERVICE ❄ SU (12/24), 5pm Early 1800s Christmas Eve candlelight service with period music and period costumes. Held at Asbury Memorial UMC, 171 Beaverdam Road GRACE LUTHERAN CHURCH 1245 6th Ave W., Hendersonville, 828-693-4890, gracelutherannc.com ❄ TH (12/19), 3pm - Blue Christmas Service, service for those enduring loss in the holiday season. Free. • THURSDAYS, 6:30-7:15 pm - All faith Taize service of meditation and music. Free. MONTHLY SPIRITUALITY GROUP FOR TEEN GIRLS • 3rd SUNDAYS, 11:30am - Monthly group for teen girls ages 13-18 from
any background or tradition to recognize spiritual gifts and a sense of purpose. Facilitated by Sharon Oxendine, an elder from the Lumbee tribe of North Carolina. Free. Held at Unity of the Blue Ridge, 2041 Old Fanning Bridge Road, Mills River
VOLUNTEERING TRANZMISSION PRISON PROJECT • Fourth THURSDAYS, 6-9pm - Monthly meeting to prepare packages of books and zines for mailing to prisons across the US. Free to attend. Held at Firestorm Books & Coffee, 610 Haywood Road For more volunteering opportunities visit mountainx.com/ volunteering
GIVE BOLDLY Breaking the cycle of poverty, through education, one child at a time.
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DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
SURVIVING TROUBLED TIMES Strategies for coping with political upheaval and spiritual malaise BY LESLIE BOYD
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firstname.lastname@example.org Nothing about politics seems normal these days. Whether it’s local issues such as gentrification and overdevelopment or, at the national level, things like health care, the Green New Deal and military spending, the conversations have gotten toxic. Name-calling, disinformation and concerns about foreign interference loom large. Often, we’re left feeling powerless to combat the toxic atmosphere and wondering whether our votes will even count. As the presidential election inches closer, voters are left trying to make sense of an increasingly loud and nasty campaign. No matter which side of the political divide we land on, the resulting stress takes a toll on mind and body alike — and the more prolonged it is, the worse the effects. What to do? “I find a sense of humor helps,” says local Rabbi Wolff Alterman, “and the more absurd, the better.” Alterman tells people he supports Vermin Supreme, a comedic candidate for president who says if he’s elected, every American will get a pony. “What are you going to do with your pony?” Alterman asks with a mischievous grin. Humor, he says, can help deflect animosity. When people can laugh together, they have found common ground. Film star Robert De Niro likens today’s political climate to being in an abusive relationship: the anger, the seemingly endless vitriol and the unwillingness to listen to any other point of view.
UP IN SMOKE: Local Rabbi Wolff Alterman says even his doctor agrees that a pleasant cigar enjoyed beside the French Broad River every couple of weeks is better for his health than getting stuck in a state of stress and anxiety. Alterman urges spending time in nature, tapping into one’s sense of humor and reflecting on the inevitability of change as effective coping strategies. Photo by Leslie Boyd “It’s like living in an abusive household,” he said during an interview with Stephen Colbert last month. “You feel you don’t know what crazy thing is going to happen next, what’s going to make you say, ‘What the hell’s going on?’” A recent study found that a large number of Americans believe their physical health has been harmed by
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their exposure to politics. An even larger number say that politics has resulted in emotional costs and lost friendships. “The best thing people can do in this atmosphere is self-care,” counsels Asheville therapist Meg Hudson. How much self-care people need and how deeply they’re affected by the discord in politics, she says, depend somewhat on their innate
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“The best thing people can do in this atmosphere is self-care.” —Asheville therapist Meg Hudson ability to bounce back — their resilience. Some people are just born with more of that than others. Stress causes the release of adrenaline and cortisol, hormones that activate the fight-or-flight response. Sustained stress, she notes, can cause heart palpitations, increased blood pressure, atherosclerosis, weight gain and insomnia, none of which is compatible with a long, healthy life. “We’re in this state of fear, with the perceived inability to do anything about it, and we tend to give up — and we suffer depression and anxiety,” Hudson explains. Political activists, in particular, can feel trapped in a reality they may find frightening. JUST WALK AWAY Black Mountain resident Valerie Hartshorn, the mother of three young sons, helped establish the group Indivisible Black Mountain. Since
then, she’s been diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder. “For me, self-care means I spend less time on the computer, and I’m careful to monitor my information intake so as not to overload,” says Hartshorn. “I limit my time on social media, because it tends to derail me from doing the work.” In the same spirit, she refuses to get into arguments online, instead simply closing her browser and walking away. “You never settle anything that way, but you do get upset,” she maintains. “It’s not worth it.” Hartshorn knows there are various issues that concern her, but she also understands that she can’t work on all of them. “I say we need to pick our top three issues and then narrow our focus onto one,” she continues. “We can be the go-to person for one issue while we stand with others who are the go-to people on other important
CONTINUES ON PAGE 26
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issues, and nobody gets spread too thin. … Learn how to build coalitions, and learn when it’s appropriate to follow rather than to lead.” Brenda Murphree is a leader in Indivisible Asheville, and she, too, experiences stress. “I should probably get to the gym more,” she concedes. “But when I feel overwhelmed, I get the dog and take a long walk. I take a full half-hour. Being outdoors, walking beside the stream, it helps.” Murphree also finds that she does better reading the news than watching it on television. And when she finds herself thinking that she can’t make a difference, she seeks out other activists for reassurance that she’s never working alone. “I’m a bit of an introvert,” Murphree reveals. “It’s not easy for me to go knocking on doors to register voters and talk to people about the issues. In fact, it’s draining.”
Pastoral counselor Russell Siler Jones believes there are myriad approaches to coping with these toxic political times. “Some people are wired to be more sympathetic and sensitive than others,” he says. “It’s a gift of emotional empathy. Then there are people who have the gift of being able to compartmentalize — and there is no moral superiority to one or the other.” Siler Jones, who wrote Spirit in Session: Working With Your Client’s Spirituality (and Your Own) in Psychotherapy, advises folks who are struggling to first acknowledge that the toxic political atmosphere bothers them. “It does make sense that we are affected by this,” he says. What’s more, it isn’t easy to see things from the other person’s point of view. That’s probably why every major religion has some form of the golden
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rule: Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. “There’s a reason it doesn’t tell us to do unto others before they do to you,” he points out. Abiding by the golden rule “is not just good for the recipient: There are benefits to the giver as well.” As a young man, Siler Jones says he worked on an archaeological dig with a very diverse group of people. “It was hard, physical work in the hot sun,” he recalls. “And we found our differences increasingly irrelevant as we worked together.” This led him to believe that before any two nations go to war, their leaders should be forced to spend time together doing hard physical labor. “Look, it’s healthy when injustice makes you mad,” he says. “But the world benefits when we deal with it in nondestructive ways.” For Alterman, that means getting out to sit by the French Broad River and enjoy an occasional cigar or, in warmer weather, jumping into a
WELLN ESS CA LEN DA R PILATES CLASSES AT HAPPY BODY (PD.) Individualized, Challenging, Equipment and Mat classes. Call 277-5741. Details at: AshevilleHappyBody.com SOUND HEALING • SATURDAY • SUNDAY (PD.) Every Saturday, 11am and Sundays, 12 noon. Experience deep relaxation with crystal bowls, gongs, didgeridoo and other peaceful instruments. $15. At Skinny Beats Sound Shop, 4 Eagle Street. www.skinnybeatsdrums. com
OPEN MINDFULNESS MEDITATION • WEDNESDAYS, 3:305pm & 6:30-8pm - Open mindfulness meditation. Admission by donation. Held at The Center for Art and Spirit at St. George's Episcopal Church, 1 School Road RICEVILLE COMMUNITY WORKOUT • THURSDAYS, 6pm Community workout for all ages and fitness levels. Bring yoga mat and water. Free. Held at Riceville Fire Department, 2251 Riceville Road
kayak and paddling for an hour or two. “Yeah, the cigar isn’t good for me, but one every couple of weeks is less harmful than the effects of stress,” he says. “My doctor even agrees with me.” Nature, says Alterman, soothes him more than anything else. He thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail 25 years ago, and he still gets together with friends for all-day or weekendlong hikes. “I turn off my phone and I don’t turn it back on until I come back. It isn’t about getting away: It’s about getting in and reconnecting with myself.” It’s also important, notes Alterman, to remind ourselves that humanity has survived worse than what’s happening in politics now. “Things don’t stay good forever, but they don’t stay bad forever, either,” he emphasizes. “Mark Twain once said, ‘For those of you inclined to worry, you have the widest selection in history.’ Well, more than a century later, that’s still true.” X
SNUGGLE PARTY • SA (12/21), 6:45-10pm - Explore platonic intimacy in an environment that upholds personal boundaries and respect, create a space of easy openness and compassionate connection. Free. Held at Asheville Botanical Gardens, 151 WT Weaver Blvd. SPECIAL OLYMPICS ADAPTIVE CROSSFIT CLASSES • WEDNESDAYS, 3-4pm - Adaptive crossfit classes for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Free. Held at
South Slope CrossFit, 217 Coxe Ave., Suite B TREATMENT OPTIONS FOR DIABETIC WOUNDS • WE (12/18), noon-1pm - Treatment Options for Diabetic Wounds, lunch and presentation by Dr. Demetri Poulis. Registration required: 855-774-5433. Free. Held at AdventHealth Hendersonville, 100 Hospital Drive, Hendersonville Some events from this section may be found in the Give!Local calendar on p. 22
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Lay leaders tie faith and environmental action also lay leaders for the first time. While the first day of Resilience and Restoration in the Mountains, taking place at the Montreat Conference Center on Friday and Saturday, Feb. 7-8, remains focused on ordained ministers only, its second day will offer “learning, grieving, inspiration and training” for all who connect their faith with creation care. “In so many places, people are becoming more and more isolated, with the fabric of community being torn apart on many fronts,” HardinNieri says. “At their best, faith communities are some of the few remaining places where people are encouraged and trained to be in right relationship with others, self, God and the planet.” PEOPLE POWER
BETTER TOGETHER: Volunteers with St. Eugene Catholic Church in North Asheville gather in the parish’s Friendship Garden, which grows vegetables for the needy. Photo by Cynthia Gibbs
BY DANIEL WALTON email@example.com “What else has your church, business or home purchased that writes checks whenever the sun shines?” asks Bill Maloney, a parishioner at St. Eugene Catholic Church in North Asheville. He’s referring to the 147 solar panels that grace the church’s south-facing roof, installed in 2015, which have since generated over 238 megawatt-hours of electricity for the parish.
Although St. Eugene’s pastor, the Rev. Pat Cahill, lent his full backing to the solar project, its genesis came from the church’s Care of Creation Ministry. That group of lay leaders, inspired by Pope Francis and his 2015 letter “Laudato si,’” has also worked to transition the parish away from disposable serving ware and established a church garden that donates vegetables to those in need through Catholic Charities Diocese of Charlotte. Grassroots efforts among the members of faith communities such as St. Eugene
have gained ground in Western North Carolina over the past few years, says the Rev. Scott Hardin-Nieri, who directs the Creation Care Alliance initiative of Asheville-based environmental nonprofit MountainTrue. Congregations beyond Buncombe County, including churches in Henderson County, Waynesville, Bryson City and other farther-flung locations, are seeking to establish or grow their own environmental ministries. In light of that momentum, HardinNieri is opening the CCA’s annual retreat to include not just clergy but
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Lay leaders are critical to creation care work, Hardin-Nieri explains, because even supportive clergy can find themselves pulled in many directions. He shares that, in a previous job as a full-time pastor in Colorado, his own deep concern over climate change sometimes took a back seat to the immediate needs of his flock. “To keep climate at the top of my priority list was difficult after preparing a sermon, visiting people in the hospital, offering pastoral care to those grieving, people contemplating suicide, struggling with an addicted child, working on community homelessness initiatives, leading Bible studies, Sunday school and worship and trying to keep teenagers engaged with their faith community,” Hardin-Nieri says. “Lay leaders who prioritize climate change and creation care can be gentle, and sometimes not so gentle, reminders
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(avl.mx/6t5), which provides specific action items in areas such as waste reduction and worship experiences. There’s no time like the present, Ogletree emphasizes, for leaders in faith communities to rise up around creation care. “Going into an election year, I think this work is really important,” she says. “If you’ve been thinking about doing this work, now really is the time to dig deep, to find your passion and to talk about it.” X
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WHERE Montreat Conference Center 401 Assembly Drive Montreat
LIGHT OF MINE: St. Eugene Catholic Church installed a 147-panel solar array as part of a layled creation care effort. Photo by Warner Photography, courtesy of St. Eugene to the congregation and clergy people about the moral imperative to care for the earth.” Vicki Ransom, the chair of St. Eugene’s Care of Creation Ministry and a scheduled presenter at the CCA retreat, agrees that clergy sometimes need a push in the right direction by passionate congregants. She points to her parish’s efforts on eliminating disposables; even after showing how washing dishes instead of using plastic foam products would save money while reducing waste, she says, her team had to campaign for a churchwide policy. “We did have to talk with Father Pat about why it was important that using reusable dinnerware not just be a Care of Creation effort — it needs to be something the whole parish embraces,” Ransom says. “He’s been very supportive, but on the other hand, he is not always as vocal as we would hope he could be. Sometimes we have to give him some prep work that makes it easy.” When clergy do speak out, Ransom adds, they can unify parishioners with different political or social views under the common cause of faith. “We may disagree about many things, but we do agree that we feel that God loves us, that what the creator made was good and we need to take care of it,” she says. GLOBAL PERSPECTIVE Other lay presenters at the CCA retreat will include keynote speaker
Emily Askew, an associate professor of theology at the Lexington Theological Seminary in Kentucky; Deke Arndt, an Asheville-based climate scientist with the National Centers for Environmental Information; and Sarah Ogletree, program coordinator for N.C. Interfaith Power & Light. Each will offer insight, Ogletree says, into why a focus on creation makes sense for people of faith. “We know that disenfranchised populations are the most impacted by climate change. That’s people of color, people in poverty, people with different abilities — those are the people that Jesus called us to care for,” Ogletree explains. “When we do something like put our money into solar, we mitigate the impacts of climate change that are hurting those folks the most. “It might seem a little bit indirect, but I think we both have to feed the hungry person in front of us, care for the poor person in front of us and prevent that person from being hungry or being really harmed in the future,” Ogletree continues. Outside of the retreat, many resources are available for congregations looking to get involved. Ogletree says her organization offers free speakers, presentations and energy audits for churches across the state, while Hardin-Nieri points to the CCA’s online Guide for Cultivating Care for Creation
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HAND IN HAND: Diners join hands to say grace before a seating at the Haywood Street Congregation Welcome Table. Connecting people through food is the focus of the ministry, which offers free hot meals to all regardless of income. Photo courtesy of Haywood Street Congregation
BY LAURA HACKETT firstname.lastname@example.org A good, healthy meal does more than fill the stomach; it nourishes the soul, cultivates a sense of belonging and can even function as medicine. Unfortunately — despite our region’s burgeoning “Foodtopia” reputation — meals like these can be rare for many living in the mountains.
In 2019, several Xpress articles, including “WNC’s Hidden Faces of Food Insecurity” in the March 6 issue, shared stories from the roughly 220,000 people in Western North Carolina who don’t have regular access to food. This month, as the holiday season demands more from all of us, we focus on organizations that recognize the spiritual importance of food and work tirelessly to make nutritious meals more accessible and equitable. At a time when new eligibility standards threaten to strip nearly 30,000 North
Carolinians of federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program benefits, the fight against food insecurity remains as vital as ever. “Food is something that’s so sacred, yet people are struggling to have it and to celebrate it,” says Ali Casparian, founder and interim executive director of Bounty & Soul, a nonprofit that each week provides five free produce markets in Black Mountain and Swannanoa. “That’s what we hear and see. There’s a constant struggle of people not being able to meet basic needs.”
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Transport Your Senses Although there’s a perception of general abundance in WNC, she continues, that’s not always the case due to the rising cost of living. “So the people who were managing with low-wage jobs are struggling more because their rent has gone up,” she says. “So usually at the end of the week, the biggest trade-offs are with food. We have this system that’s set up where the cheapest, most convenient food is unhealthy.” JOINING FORCES Faith-based organizations in WNC have historically worked to alleviate this daunting problem, pooling resources, collecting food and volunteering at nonprofits such as MANNA FoodBank, The Sharing House and the Interfaith Assistance Ministry. At just those three organizations, more than 200 area congregations have stepped up to the challenge of fighting food insecurity. One of those churches is Mills River Presbyterian Church. The congregation has partnered with IAM since 1984, donating about 500 pounds of canned and packaged food a year. Thanks to an impressive mobilization of more than 60 congregations, IAM provided food for 9,840 people and holiday meals to 1,489 families in 2018. The Mills River church also contributes to this movement through the Presbytery of WNC’s Nickel-aMeal hunger program, which encourages folks to put 5 cents (or more) in a jar for each meal eaten. These funds are then pooled with those from other churches and distributed to anti-hunger organizations, explains Edwin Holcombe, chair of the church’s mission committee. “We’re a small church with 70 members, so we’re just trying to find every way we can to support members of the community in need and show Christian love to our fellow citizens,” says Holcombe. “This is one way we do it, and we’re continuing to look for opportunities.” ROOTING OUT FOOD WASTE Behind the scenes of every free community meal or food distribution effort, there’s an equally important story of how that food got there. Roughly 200,000 pounds of donated produce in Buncombe and Henderson counties can be traced back to the volunteer network of the Society of St. Andrews and its traditional biblical practice of “gleaning” crops that would otherwise be plowed over or left in the fields to rot after harvest.
Rooted in the Judeo-Christian principles of service, faith, compassion and stewardship, the organization is named for the disciple Andrew, who was known for cultivating abundance in places where others saw scarcity. In WNC, SoSA distributes what it gleans from area farms to 42 distributors, including Bounty & Soul, the YMCA and the Boys & Girls Club. While this practice seems like a nobrainer, it’s a deviation from how leftover food is normally handled. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimates that about 40% of the food produced each year in the United States ends up going to waste. “It could be a large facility or a woman with an apple tree who doesn’t want them to fall off the tree and go to waste. There’s really no formalities,” explains Justine Redden, SoSA’s WNC gleaning coordinator. “A grower will call and say, ‘Hey, I have all these extra squash and tomatoes,’ and I’ll meet with them and scout the field.” If the crops are in acceptable condition, Redden will then call on her fleet of more than 300 active volunteers for help with harvesting and transportation. Due to the perishable nature of produce, Redden says she usually has about a four-day turnaround to coordinate the gleaning efforts, which can be located anywhere in WNC and annually involve more than 130 growers. Nonetheless, rather than contending with a shortage of helpers, she finds herself having to put a cap on the volunteer numbers. “I’m continuously amazed by their zeal and impressed by their energy,” says Redden. “They’re all so motivated.” In her work, Redden also focuses on the dignity aspect of food insecurity. “With this whole bootstrap narrative, it can be humiliating to ask for help, so I think it’s important to make the experience as dignified as possible,” she says. “Folks can also sign up to be on the gleaning list and attend if they are seeking to get food for themselves and their family, so
they are literally getting the fruits of their labor.” EVERYONE IS WELCOME Over at Haywood Street Congregation, a United Methodist Church ministry wedged between Interstate 240 and the outskirts of downtown Asheville, food is viewed as a “means to express love, grace and abundance,” explains the organization’s lead storyteller, Brook van der Linde. In 2010, the congregation served its first Downtown Welcome Table lunch. By 2017, the biweekly, family-style meal — which accents its homemade fare with cloth napkins, fresh flowers and stoneware plates donated by East Fork Pottery — had served its 100,000th meal. Today, van der Linde says, roughly 1,000 plates are served each week. More than 50 area restaurants volunteer their time to prepare meals throughout the year, and about 45 people volunteer as waitstaff and check-in and cleanup crew. Guests are not required to participate in a worship ceremony before receiving a meal, which van der Linde says provides many a feeling of relief. “There’s no obstacles to getting fed.” Unlike a traditional soup kitchen, the meals are open to anyone in the community. While one of the goals is certainly to feed anyone who might be hungry, van der Linde emphasizes that the deeper purpose of the meals is to gather and unite a wide cross section of the community. “I see people filled and fulfilled by both food and nonfood around the table,” she says. “Are we answering the question of food insecurity? Sure. … But we believe in, above all else, what is happening when any meal is shared, how it decreases isolation and builds relationships. That’s our guiding North Star.” X
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A number of local restaurants and breweries are coming together for the holidays, donating food and beverages to Town and Mountain Realty’s eighth annual Home for the Holidays Fundraiser. The gathering takes place at The Orange Peel on Friday, Dec. 20. The event raises money for several local nonprofits that work with the area’s homeless population, children and residents in crisis. This year’s recipients include Homeward Bound of WNC, Helpmate, BeLoved Asheville, Eliada and Haywood Street Congregation. As with last year’s fundraiser, the goal is $20,000 (an amount the event surpassed in 2018 by $5,000). Admission is by a suggested donation of $10 per person. Entry includes appetizers and entrées prepared by eateries, which at press time included Moe’s Original BBQ, Mountain Madre Mexican Kitchen & Agave Bar, Chupacabra Latin Cafe, Okie Dokies Smokehouse, The Barrelhouse, Zia Taqueria, Strada and Catering by Corey. Additional restaurants are expected to sign on as the event nears. Leftover food will be donated to the five nonprofits. Home for the Holidays will also feature $3 pours from Highland Brewing Co. and Appalachian Mountain Brewery, with all proceeds from the donated kegs benefiting the charities. A silent auction, raffle and live music from Leeda “Lyric” Jones and Swing Step will take place during the event, as well. Kids activities will be offered 5-7 p.m. with free pizza from Papa John’s and a chance to take photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus. In an email exchange with Xpress, Town and Mountain Realty owners Sophie and Leah Miller write, “While our job is to help people find a home here and sell their most valuable asset, it is our duty not only as Realtors but as members of our community and, indeed, as humans, to give back and help those in need.” The holiday fundraiser runs 5-10 p.m. Friday, Dec. 20, at The Orange Peel, 101 Biltmore Ave. For more information, visit avl.mx/6ro.
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Andy Hale, director of The Asheville School of Wines at Metro Wines, will
HOLIDAY CHEER: Grub and grog aren’t all that’s available at the eighth annual Home for the Holidays Fundraiser. Live music, a silent auction, raffles and jolly old St. Nick will also be featured. Photo courtesy of Town and Mountain Realty lead his latest blind tasting class on Thursday, Dec. 19. According to a press release, Hale will take participants “through the process of deductive reasoning in a fun and informative way to determine what’s in your glass.” Tickets are $20. The class runs 5:30-6:30 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 19, at Metro Wines, 169 Charlotte St. To reserve a spot, call 828-575-9525 or visit avl.mx/6re.
Solstice Soiree Black Bear BBQ will celebrate winter solstice with a five-course dinner prepared by chef A.J. Gregson. The evening begins with hors d’oeuvres and a cocktail followed by courses including red curry winter squash bisque, turkey roulade and white chocolate pot de creme. Tickets are $55 per person, tax and gratuity not included. Beer or wine pairings are also available at additional cost. Seating is limited. The Solstice Soiree happens at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, at Black Bear BBQ, 800 Fairview Road. For reser-
vations, email blackbearbbq@gmail. com. For details, visit avl.mx/6rp.
Gospel Brunch with Redneck Mimosa Southern Appalachian Brewery hosts its fourth annual Gospel Brunch with Redneck Mimosa on Sunday, Dec. 22. The afternoon event will feature food, beer and live music by Asheville Second Line. Olive Catering Co. will offer a menu including steak and eggs, crab cake Benedict, avocado toast Benedict and Buffalo chicken fries. The event runs noon-3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, at Southern Appalachian Brewery, 822 Locust St., Suite 100, Hendersonville. For more information, visit avl.mx/6rl.
Holiday empanada party Banks Ave. bar will host a holiday empanada party and ugly sweater contest on Sunday, Dec. 22. According to the event’s Facebook page, handmade empanadas will be
paired with beer. Tickets are $18 in advance or $20 at the door. The party runs 4-7 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, at Banks Ave., 32 Banks Ave., unit 101. To purchase tickets, visit avl.mx/6rf.
Cookie decorating class The Casual Pint and 3 Eggs Cakery will host a holiday cookie decorating class on Sunday, Dec. 22. Participants of the family-friendly workshop will leave with half a dozen custom treats for Jolly Old St. Nick. Tickets are $20 and must be purchased in advance. The workshop runs 3-5 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, at The Casual Pint, 1863 Hendersonville Road, Suite 145. To purchase tickets, visit avl.mx/6rg.
X-mas Eve Lasagna Extravaganza The Cut Cocktail Lounge in Sylva will host its fourth annual X-mas Eve Lasagna Extravaganza. Vegetarian and meat options will be available. Sides will include garlic knots and spinach salad. Plates are $10. The lounge will also host a Christmas Day dinner with brisket (served roasted or as tacos with molé), scalloped potatoes, creamed spinach and more for $15 per plate. The X-mas Eve Lasagna Extravaganza runs 5 p.m.-2 a.m. Tuesday, Dec. 24, at The Cut Cocktail Lounge, 610 Main St., Sylva. Christmas dinner runs 3-10
p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 25. For more, visit avl.mx/6rh and avl.mx/6ri.
H&F Burger opens Atlanta-based H&F Burger recently opened a location in Asheville in the space that previously housed the Continental Lounge. Founded in 2015 by James Beard award-winning chef Linton Hopkins, the restaurant offers a rotating selection of burgers along with milkshakes, salads, side dishes, a whiskey bar, local beers and wine. The family-friendly establishment is equipped with televisions, jukeboxes and arcade games. The new location is Hopkins’ first restaurant outside Atlanta. H&F is at 77 Biltmore Ave. Hours vary. For more information, visit avl.mx/6rj.
Chai Pani launches new space Chai Pani’s new event space is now open with a name locals might recall: MG Road, the same name as its nowclosed cocktail lounge. In addition to special events, the Wall Street location will also host pop-up concepts and handle overflow and large-party seating on weekends for Chai Pani. MG Road is at 19 Wall St. Regular hours are Friday-Saturday, 5:30-10 p.m. and Sunday, 5-9:30 p.m. For more information, visit avl.mx/6rk. X
SAWHORSE New Year's Eve at Sawhorse Join the Beaver Club at Sawhorse for a winter feast! Begin with a cocktail reception and continue to feasting tables laden with all the hearty fare to fortify a soul against a cold winter's night. Menu inspired by the original Beaver Club of 18th century fur-trapping barons in eastern Canada.
7pm $50 tickets available on our website, or by phone Price includes lifelong membership to the Beaver Club, with many more events to follow!
SUGAR SHACK EVENT LEFT 5-8pm • Sun, Dec 22nd Check our website for more details
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CAROLINA BEER GUY by Tony Kiss | firstname.lastname@example.org
DSSOLVR opens on Lexington Avenue T F E L S K 2 WEEGIVE! TO DEC. 31
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BOSTON STRONG: DSSOLVR co-owners Vince Tursi, left, and Mike Semenec began planning their brewery years ago when they both lived in Boston. Photo courtesy of DSSOLVR It has been an incredibly busy year for beer in Asheville, and, as 2019 winds down, another downtown brewery has opened on busy Lexington Avenue. On Dec. 13, DSSOLVR officially launched as the 40th active brewing company in Buncombe County. The debut represents the culmination of years of planning and work by co-owners Vince Tursi and Mike Semenec. The dream started for Tursi, who previously brewed at Burial Beer Co., and Semenec when they were working and living in Boston. They wanted to open a brewery, but, in Tursi’s words, “I would get a better job, and [Semenec] would get a better job, and the timing never worked out.” After opening Night Shift Brewing in Everett, Mass., just north of Boston, and Lord Hobo Brewing in nearby Woburn, Tursi moved to Asheville and worked on the Forestry Camp Bar and Restaurant, which is also home to Burial’s production brewery. “The last two years, I’ve been chipping away, trying to make [DSSOLVR] happen,” he says. Tursi notes that the downtown space DSSOLVR occupies in the historic Tyler Building has “the urban feel” the partners wanted, and they felt Lexington Avenue would generate the foot traffic he says the brewery needs. The property also “had the historical element” that they yearned to focus on. “We wanted to restore an old building and keep it alive,” he says. Tursi adds that DSSOLVR’s rooms once housed a thrift store but had sat
empty for years. Built in 1928, the hillside construction presented challenges when it came to renovating the 8,000-squarefoot space and prepping it for a 15-barrel brewing system (purchased in 2017) and a 3-barrel pilot system. A 1,000-squarefoot area of the building is dedicated to brewing sour beers. “We ended up taking out a bunch of walls,” Tursi says. “To bring the shell up to where we could even start construction took us a year.” Tursi says he brewed a lot of beer in the two weeks leading up to the launch. DSSOLVR has a canning system and started off canning a cream ale and a kölsch to offer for sale on opening day. The taproom also debuted with a hoppy pilsner, a double IPA, a session IPA and more, all of which focused on local malts and agriculture. “We will be brewing a decent amount of English- and German-style [beers],” Tursi says. “At the same time, we will be brewing American-style beers.” While he notes that there could be some initial distribution, Tursi and his DSSOLVR crew would rather have patrons visit the brewery first. “We put a lot of effort into building this space,” he says. “It’s unlike any taproom I’ve been in before.” DSSOLVR is at 63 Lexington Ave. Tasting room hours are 5-11 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 5 p.m.-midnight Friday, noon-midnight Saturday and 11 a.m.-10 p.m. Sunday. For more details, visit dssolvr.com. X
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
by Gina Smith
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Chill Cereal Bar & Cafe is a mother-and-son venture Most businesses begin with a bright idea and a dream. But enterprises that sprout from the mind of an 11-yearold child are relatively rare. Although Patricia Waters is the name on the business card for Chill Cereal Bar & Cafe, the 38-year-old single mom makes it clear that the mobile cereal eatery is the brainchild of her 13-year-old son, Elijah. Two years ago, Elijah was taking cereal boxes out of the kitchen pantry when the notion struck him. “He was like, ‘Mom, we should open up a cereal bar,’” says Waters. “And it was like a lightbulb went on, and I was like, ‘Oh, my gosh — yes, we should!’” Elijah dreamed up the name for the business and designed a logo. But Waters had no restaurant or business experience (her day job is working with disabled adults at a local nonprofit) and was at a loss as to how to get the venture off the ground. Undaunted, she stepped out of her comfort zone to sign up for entrepreneurial courses at Mountain BizWorks and connect with the Western Women’s Business Center. “I said, ’All right, I’ll take some classes and see where this goes,’” she says. So, March 7, 2019 — National Cereal Day — she and Elijah debuted their business with a pop-up event at a local day care center. “I was like, 'I’m just going to come out with it; I’m going to step out on faith and just do it.’” Since then, they have operated Chill as a cereal-themed catering service, hosting pop-up events at bridal showers, birthday parties, hair salons, youth camps, afterschool programs, business meetings and more. The setup is simple: glass containers and dispensers full of a variety of cereals, milks, fruit, candy and other toppings. All components can be customized to suit dietary needs and personal preferences, and Waters is able to keep prices affordable due to low overhead — she says she’s charged as little as $120 for a party of 200 people. At kid-focused events, she also organizes and leads cereal-themed games and activities. To keep food waste at a minimum, she sets up at local homeless shelters after events to offer excess goodies to the community. Whenever Elijah isn’t busy with school — he’s a student at Francine Delaney New School for Children — he’s helping with the business. “As a parent, I’m showing him how to be an entrepreneur because they don’t teach this in school,” Waters says. “He goes to meetings with
CHILLING OUT: Patricia Waters and son Elijah take breakfast on the road any time of day with their Chill Cereal Bar & Cafe pop-up business. Photo by Hannah Ramirez me. When he’s not in school, he goes to pop-ups with me. He’s seeing the process that it takes to be a businessperson.” The mother-son team would like to see Chill eventually grow beyond popup events. If the right rental space presents itself, Waters says, they would love to someday open a brick-and-mortar cafe. A native of Leicester, she'd want to keep her business close to home — preferably in West Asheville. She envisions a family-friendly, community-focused space with a play area for children, a coffee program, hot chocolate, juices and "maybe some mimosas because mamas need that," she says. “I want to bring back fun. You know, a lot of times we don’t even have time to sit down and have a bowl of cereal with our kids, we’re so in a rush all the time,” Waters adds. “What I’m trying to do is bring the community and families back together one cereal bowl at a time.” Longtime locals might remember a similar venture more than a decade ago — Eaties, a funky downtown cereal bar filled with comfy couches and TVs broadcasting cartoons. It blipped onto the scene for about a year before closing in early 2008. In a farewell letter to Xpress, Eaties owner Becky Johnson noted several reasons for the demise of the business, including its hard-to-find space at 48 Commerce
St. (the current location of Addissae Ethiopian restaurant). “The true reasons vary: It’s hard to compete with fast-food prices; it’s hard to have a somewhat weird location; and it’s hard to have a restaurant based solely on cereal alone,” wrote Johnson. “[But] the biggest reason of them all holds true: We simply ran out of money. The few that loved us were unfortunately too few and too infrequent.” There hasn’t been another cereal bar in Asheville since Eaties, but there are successful variations on the concept in other cities, such as Gizmo’s Cereal Bar in Los Angeles and the London-based international Cereal Killer Cafe. Waters remembers Eaties and says she’s in no big rush to make a brickand-mortar happen. She’s committed to taking the time to build startup capital without going into debt. “By taking baby steps, I’m right where I need to be,” she says. “I don’t want this to be for six months or a year, I want this to be forever. I want this [business] to be passed down.” Elijah’s vision keeps her motivated. “It’s his dream,” she says. “Sometimes we don’t listen to our kids, you know? We’ve got to listen to them; you never know what kinds of ideas they’ll have.” For more on Chill Cereal Bar & Cafe, look for the business on Facebook and Instagram. X
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
MAKE A JOYFUL NOISE
How local music ministries soundtrack spiritual experience
BY ALLI MARSHALL AND EDWIN ARNAUDIN
back to biblical times, of people of faith expressing their worship, their aspirations, their longings, even their confessions, their despair through music.” First Baptist concert life is an extension of the Judeo-Christian tradition of music connecting human beings to God, Sorrells notes. A recent holiday program by the 150-voice Asheville Youth Choir, The Time of Snow, explored “the surprising beauty of winter,” Sorrells says. “We often think of winter as being cold and barren and windy. … But in that time there’s this really unusual, unexpected beauty in that. In the same sense, the holiday season — no matter what faith perspective you bring to that — is a time when families are together, human relationships are celebrated [and ultimately] the best in people comes out in the holiday season.” Learn more and find upcoming concerts at fbca.net. — A.M.
email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org For some listeners, music is a religious experience in and of itself. For others, song and instrumentation enhance spiritual practice, be it in the form of meditative chanting, energizing gospel choruses or biblically informed musicals. In this story, Xpress looks into the musical ministries of a number of local churches and explores what such programs, at the intersection of art and worship, offer to parishioners as well as secular fans of a good concert.
The joy of faith During the monthly Bach’s Lunch concert series, organist Tate Addis performs “some very, very edgy stuff — what would be termed as dissonant, aleatoric, obtuse,” says Clark Sorrells, minister of music at the First Baptist Church of Asheville. That’s in addition to traditional pieces. The combination is great, says Sorrells, “because I don’t think you can put God in a box.” In his 23 years at the local church, Sorrells has seen and created other edgy programming, such as a production of Jesus Christ Superstar (a risk, he notes, because it depicts Jesus in a very human way). Some highlights have included performances of Duke Ellington’s Sacred Concerts, the works of classical European composers such as Vivaldi and Puccini, and concerts of African American spiritual and mountain folk music — “a whole gambit of
SACRED AND SECULAR: Programming at First Baptist Church of Asheville includes a 90-voice adult choir, two handbell choirs and a 25-piece orchestra to serve the church. The church also sponsors the Academy for the Arts, which is not faith-identified, says Minister of Music Clark Sorrells but is “an expression of our church’s belief that arts make the world a better place.” Photo courtesy of First Baptist Church of Asheville styles under the umbrella of celebrating the goodness of life, the joy of faith and the transcendence of God,” says Sorrells. Aside from the faith-based programming, the iconic local church also includes secular music in its work, mainly in the form of its Academy for the Arts. The private and group music lessons and ensembles, including the Asheville Youth Choir, are open to students of all spiritual views. The school, which opened five years ago, evolved from the idea that “it seemed to
M AL I s I N A e ng in Jan su
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be shortsighted to think we could only offer [the resources of the church] to those who were coming to worship God in Christian context,” says Sorrells. “The right thing to do is offer it to anybody in this community who wants to explore the artistic side of who they are.” But he does see a direct correlation between music and spiritual practice. “The good thing about art is everyone experiences art in their own way,” he says. “There’s a long history, all the way
Scratches, samples and sermons A music ministry doesn’t necessarily require a specific church or congregation. “You’re using whatever genre of music you’ve been called to do to represent and talk to people about Christ,” says Herman Bright, aka DJ Besbleve. In 2007, after rededicating his life to Christianity, he asked what God wanted him to do, “and he said he wanted me to DJ.” At the time, Bright didn’t have any DJ equipment, and “I didn’t even know at that time Christian hiphop existed.” So he started research-
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DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
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DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
ing and connecting with artists making those sorts of tracks. “I think hip-hop speaks to every generation. The particular [group] I’ve been called to reach is people who love hip-hop,” says Bright, who has, over the course of his career, DJed festivals, churches and secular nightclubs and has performed in most states throughout the Southeast. “Whenever I make a mixtape … it’s very prayerful. I’m always very cautious about what songs I put on a mixtape or, when I’m sampling stuff, what part of the song [God] wants me to use.” Making a mixtape is similar to writing a sermon, Bright says. He meditates on it and references Scripture. “When I’m [onstage], it’s the typical DJ skills — I still scratch, I still mix, I still blend. But at the end of the day, it’s, ‘OK, Lord, what song comes next?’” Despite his success, Bright found that some people in the church didn’t take his ministry seriously. So, in 2015, he was ordained as a preacher. Two years ago, he joined the New Birth Church of Asheville, where he fills in as a pastor or leads Bible study on occasion (he also preaches at other locations around Asheville). Additionally, Bright — a longtime volunteer at Asheville FM and a contributor to that broadcaster’s “News Hour”— is preparing to launch a podcast and possible monthly live show on the station. ”I think there needs to be a more community-centered Christian voice in Asheville,“ he says. “There is a Christian voice here, but it doesn’t reach out to all of Asheville. … That’s what me and my homeboy Craig ’White Ice’ Conner hope to bring with this radio show.” He adds, “So many Christian hiphop artists have a need to make it nationally. … My focus has always been ‘What can I do to better the community I live in?’ … There’s so much work you can do right here.” Find music and follow DJ Besbleve at soundcloud.com/besbleve. — A.M.
Pop hymns Before becoming minister of music at Jubilee! Community, Daniel Barber gained professional experience in social work, research methodology, activism and video production. “I’ve spent most of my life figuring out how to leverage my small amount of human energy to make the biggest impact in the world,” Barber says. “And over the last 18-19 years, I’ve been reconnecting to music and using music in ritual, like at Jubilee and other places, not only because it’s rewarding and
gratifying for me, but because it’s such a powerful way to bring people together.” Though he considers “ministry” to be a loaded word and hasn’t been “drawn to ministry for ministry’s sake,” Barber says he’s always been attracted to service and the essence of what ministry really is about. As the leader of Jubilee’s World Beat Band — which unites piano, bass, electric bass, electric guitar, drums, saxophone and vocals — Barber selects the songs played during the prelude and postlude at each Sunday service. The minister of ritual, Amy Steinberg, picks the music for the ritual itself. Both attempt to choose works that fit the particular service’s theme, and while traditional Christian music is occasionally worked in, the services typically feature well-known pop songs by The Beatles, Stevie Wonder, Mumford & Sons, Sara Bareilles and other artists. One memorable Sunday, Barber got to realize a long-held dream of playing The Rolling Stones’ “Sympathy for the Devil” in a church setting when a guest minister spoke on the topic of demons. “We look for the song that, in an artistic way, touches on these interesting experiences that we all have as humans and find ways to bring it in and make it sacred and make it holy by making it a part of our whole experience as humans,” Barber says. “Just the fact that it’s here in a — we don’t even call it ‘church,’ but it’s in a sacred container — and just by bringing it into that sacred container in a circle with each other around an altar, it becomes sacred.” Barber views music as “a bridge between matter and spirit,” helping people link “what we understand and what we sense and detect” but are unable to fully grasp. By accessing parts of ourselves that “are sitting right there,” be it through meditation, yoga or a musical groove, he feels that people can better learn that their bodies are blessed and enjoy the simple experience of being. “We’re not in an original sin situation — we’re in an original blessing situation,” he says. “We’re blessed just to get to be here and allow ourselves to relax into that a little bit more. Music is a really good way to move down that road.” Learn more at jubileecommunity.org. — E.A.
Variety show “We deal with social justice and planet issues … so the music always has to fit, whether it’s instrumental or vocal music,” says Leslie Downs, music director at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Asheville. “That’s really my job — figuring out what the choir can sing
that will enhance what the minister is speaking about or, if I hire a guest artist … who’s going to be the best fit musically.” Downs was raised in the Baptist church, where he also played piano (he went on to perform extensively as a soloist and collaborative artist in many styles as well as teaching music and voice). The UU church is a departure from Downs’ traditional upbringing: “We have members who identify as Christian, atheist, agnostic. We have some members who are Jewish. … We come together for different reasons,” he explains. So, while some denominations follow a liturgy, at the UU church, to address the needs of its theologically diverse membership, “We have a monthly theme, but we make it very broad.” Downs has just begun his fourth year as music director, a position that has expanded during his tenure. “What I like is that, in the Unitarian Church, we’re able to do a huge variety of music,” he says. “Some of it may be sacred, but we use a lot of secular music. And we have a wide range of styles, all the way from classical to
HEY, MISTER DJ: When he recommitted his life to Christ, Herman Bright received the calling to DJ Christian hip-hop. Also known as DJ Besbleve, Bright is an ordained minister, is gearing up to host a radio show and podcast, and has performed throughout the Southeast at churches, festivals and nightclubs. Photo courtesy of Bright
pop to musical theater and occasionally some gospel music thrown in.” And, while attempting to meet the tastes of the congregation, Downs has also found space for his own expression. “It’s unusual for a UU church to celebrate the birth of Jesus,” he reveals. “But our church has a tradition of having two services on Christmas Eve.” The early program involves a pageant, and before the later candlelight service, “I started a tradition of doing a mini-concert that features the choir, and we do arrangements of Christmas carols. … I bring that from my Baptist tradition.” While the work of curating the music for a worship service may be complicated, the goal is simple. “I think the music should always be uplifting,” Downs says. “It’s different for every person, but you want to reach people in a way that helps them connect with any kind of feeling that’s positive. You want people to feel renewed when they leave a service.” Learn more at uuasheville.org. — A.M. X
A Way to Connect with the Oneness www.livingpulse.org
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
by Bill Kopp
ALL ABOUT THE MUSIC Russ Wilson is one of the busiest musicians in Western North Carolina. Leading or playing in no fewer than nine bands, the singer and multiinstrumentalist has still found time to compile an album of songs that showcase the breadth of his musical vision. And, for the sixth year in a row, he’s hosting an evening of holiday classics: Have Yourself a Swingin’ Little Christmas happens Sunday, Dec. 22, at Isis Music Hall. Wilson was born in the mid-1960s, and his musical journey took him in a direction very different from that of most of his contemporaries. “When everyone else was listening to DEVO and Blondie, I was listening to Louis Armstrong, Jack Teagarden, Red Nichols, Count Basie, Benny Goodman and Gene Krupa,” Wilson says. “And it’s all because of my dad.” Wilson’s father didn’t have any special musical talent. “He always joked that he could barely play the radio,” the
Russ Wilson hosts annual Christmas show and releases career retrospective album
bandleader says. But the Wilson patriarch was a voracious reader and took a great interest in the vinyl boxed sets put together by Reader’s Digest. Two of those collections would make an indelible impression on young Wilson. “One was called The Great Band Era, 193645,” he recalls. “And another one, which I still listen to, is called In the Groove with the Kings of Swing.” The latter inspired the name of Wilson’s popular radio show, “In the Groove with Russ Wilson,” on WPVM-FM. “Through my dad, I also got into Bob Wills and His Texas Playboys, and just whatever was laying around the house,” Wilson explains. “And when I was old enough to be let out of the house by myself, I’d hang out at the public library on Saturday afternoons, checking out records. And it just stuck.” Today, Wilson appears live four or five nights a week, singing and/or playing with groups led by him or other longtime associates. Those groups take
ONE NIGHT TO (JINGLE BELL) ROCK: Bandleader Russ Wilson presents his sixth annual holiday concert, Have Yourself a Swingin’ Little Christmas, Dec. 22 at Isis Music Hall. The concert caps off a busy year for the always active musician; 2019 also saw the release of a career retrospective album, It’s All About Me. Photo by Bobby Bonsey
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on a wide array of styles, from big band swing and jump blues to prewar hot jazz and early rock ’n’ roll. And that wide-encompassing approach to American musical forms is condensed — like the stories in his father’s favorite Reader’s Digest — on Wilson’s latest album, It’s All About Me. Across 14 tracks (some recorded decades ago), the album is a tidy survey of Wilson’s musical world. Featured variously as a singer, musician and conductor, Wilson works his way through up-tempo proto-rock (“7 Nights to Rock”), doo-wop (“I Only Have Eyes for You”), vocal jazz (“Bei Mir Bist Du Schön”) and even Southern gospel (“Headin’ Home”). That last track is one that Wilson recorded himself in the 1990s using a pair of cassette decks. Playing guitar and overdubbing his voice multiple times (and crediting the track to “Russ Wilson’s Harmonizing 4”), the recording makes the point that he can do it all. But, on most of the album’s tracks (and for live performances), Wilson
draws upon the deep well of musical talent in and around Asheville. The album features recordings by The John Henrys, Firecracker Jazz Band, The Russ Wilson Swingtette and more. In his liner notes for It’s All About Me, Wilson makes it clear that the album title is meant half in jest: “Without these people in my musical life, there is no ‘ME,’” he writes. And some of those people will be joining Wilson as he takes the stage for this year’s Christmas concert. Frequent collaborators Wendy Jones (vocals), guitarist Hank Bones and pianist Richard Shulman are part of an 18-piece big band — “four trumpets, four trombones, five saxes, piano, bass, guitar, drums and me,” Wilson says — for an evening of songs and sentimentality. “We’ve got a few new arrangements that we’re bringing in, but we’re going to play all the old favorites,” Wilson says. “Wendy has a big band arrangement of ‘White Christmas.’ And last year we started doing ‘Silent Night.’” For that
number, Wilson stands at the edge of the stage as the house lights are brought up just a bit. And the audience joins in. “You’d be amazed how many good singers are out in the audience; you start hearing spontaneous harmony parts,” Wilson says, smiling at the thought. “It’s like every one of those Bing Crosby and Perry Como Christmas shows you saw,” he continues. His dad would have been proud. X
WHO Russ Wilson’s Have Yourself a Swingin’ Little Christmas WHERE Isis Music Hall 743 Haywood Road isisasheville.com WHEN Sunday, Dec. 22, at 7:30 p.m. $15
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
by Alli Marshall
UNDER ONE ROOF
Tryon couple open a multifocused creative and retail space
Sabrina Heise describes herself as a “failed archaeologist.” While the math and science of the profession didn’t suit her, “I really love the idea of pulling things from the past and getting a peek into another era.” Heise’s vintage clothing shop, Inherited, addresses
SHOP TALK: Drawing from their collective interests in music, vintage clothing, skateboards and creating community, wife and husband Sabrina Heise and Steven Fiore opened a hybrid retail space, recording studio and listening room that houses their businesses, Inherited and Reunion Tour, in Tryon. Photos courtesy of Heise and Fiore that passion and honors her family’s immigrant roots. “When my grandparents came to America, they had maybe one suitcase of the most basic things. No fun party dresses,” she says. “My idea for Inherited was the kind of pieces … that you would absolutely love to have inherited from the most stylish ladies of your family tree.” The shop, previously online only, recently opened as not only a brickand-mortar store in downtown Tryon, but also as a collaboration with Heise’s husband, the singer-songwriter and recording artist Steven Fiore (aka Young Mister), who runs Reunion Tour, a recording studio and skate and music shop in the same space. Before, “Even if you just wanted strings for your guitar, you had to go to Hendersonville or Spartanburg,” Heise says. Fiore’s section of the shared space is “a 17-year-old kid’s dream,” the musician says with a laugh. While both Heise and Fiore are originally from the Carolinas, they bounced around for a while. After Fiore tired of his time in Los Angeles, where he worked as a writer for Universal Music Publishing Group (his career also includes “a strange yet unforgettable co-writing experience with Art Garfunkel,” according to a press release, and “occasional guest appearances with Jeff Goldblum’s jazz band” as well as 7.5 million streams on Spotify), the two were ready to settle in North Carolina. “I hope 42
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that our space encourages other young people to explore small towns,” Heise says. Tryon “changed our sense of what a community could mean.” The couple are bringing something to their new hometown, too. “I’ve also always wanted to open a venue,” says Fiore. In his experience, performing solo was a challenge “because there aren’t many spaces that are built for that. You’re playing in a bar with 30 people listening and 40 people talking behind them.” The Reunion Tour section of the creative space offers a place for listeners to take in “original music from artists who might not come to Tryon normally,” Fiore says. So far, the listening room has hosted Eric Anderson of the pop band Cataldo and the Chattanooga, Tenn.based folk duo Edward and Jane. Artists perform around a vintage 1970s Sony microphone set in the center of the room. The shows, promoted largely by word of mouth, have sold out. The recording studio also came from Fiore’s personal experiences. The musician says he’s recorded in “very expensive studios my entire life and always felt really stifled in them.” His most recent Young Mister album, Sudden Swoon, was tracked in the office of his home before he and Heise had their retail location. The Reunion Tour studio will be geared toward to the projects of other artists: “I just wanted to create [a place where] you feel like you’re in a cool basement
with a lot of really neat stuff and it just feels comfortable to be in there — while still being able to turn out a quality product.” Though neither Heise nor Fiore had previously encountered a shop similar to what they’ve created, both agree that the Inherited and Reunion Tour hybrid has come together better than expected. “The space has so much natural light. It lets the pieces do the talking,” says Heise, who recently “impulse-bought an entire rack of clothing from the granddaughter of a woman who was a socialite in Texas.” That apparel, from vintage designer pieces to beaded party dresses, will likely add to the conversation. Inherited’s offerings are geared exclusively to “people who are interested in women’s clothing,” says Heise. But Reunion Tour, with its skate and rock aesthetic, includes “classic, vintage ’70s, ’80s and ’90s skater tees … a little collection that will definitely grow.” Even as the future will likely bring new ideas and possible expansion, the new store’s current iteration feels fully realized. “The space has defined our shop for us — everything went where it needed to go,” says Heise. “It does feel a lot like luck,” Fiore adds. “And we’ll keep taking it.” Learn more and find listening room events at reuniontourcreative.com, facebook.com/realyoungmister and inheritedvintage.com X
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AT PACK’S TAVERN! TOPPERS AND FAVORS | $20 BOT TLES OF BUBBLY | SPECIALT Y COCK TAILS | Music by A SOCIAL FUNCTION at 9:30PM in our SOUTH BAR! HARPER PARTNERS: Black Mountain Center for the Arts welcomes the Mountain Folk Harpers Ensemble for a Christmas concert of seasonal selections, original music and Celtic tunes planned for Sunday, Dec. 22, 7 p.m. The Mountain Folk Harpers are a loose association of harp enthusiasts led by harpist and teacher Sue Richards. Tickets are $12 at blackmountainarts.org or call 828-669-0930. Photo courtesy of Black Mountain Center for the Arts (p. 45)
=❄ ART 5TH ANNUAL DISPLAY OF NATIVITY SETS ❄ Through WE (12/18), 5-8pm Display of 300+ nativity sets from 60+ countries. Free. Held at First Baptist Church of Asheville, 5 Oak St.
group. Free. Held at Revolve, 821 Riverside Drive, #179 DRAFT 2.0: LIFE DRAWING NIGHT • WE (12/18), 6-8pm - Life drawing session, bring your own art supplies, dry media only. $5. Held at Blue Spiral 1, 38 Biltmore Ave.
ARTIST DEMONSTRATION WITH DEB PARMELE • SA (12/21), 1-4pm - Deb Parmele demonstrates beaded jewelry. Free. Held at Haywood County Arts Council, 86 N. Main St., Waynesville
FIBER ARTS AT FAIRVIEW • Through TU (12/31) - Fairview fiber artists Julie Bagamary, Paula Entin and Laura Gaskin display their work. Held at Fairview Library, 1 Taylor Road, Fairview
ASHEVILLE ART THEORY READING GROUP • 3rd WEDNESDAYS, 6pm - Asheville art theory reading
THE PRAYER SHAWL MINISTRY • Fourth TUESDAYS, 10am - Volunteer to knit or crochet prayer shawls
for community members in need. Free. Held at Grace Lutheran Church, 1245 6th Ave W., Hendersonville
ART/CRAFT STROLLS & FAIRS SHOW & TELL HOLIDAY POP UP SHOP (PD.) 11/29-12/21, 10am8pm @ ASHEVILLE SOCIAL HALL. Find a gift for everyone on your list! Shop local/ indie craft, design, and vintage. showandtellpopupshop. com • 81 Broadway St., 28801. FIRESTORM HOLIDAY CRAFT POP-UP SERIES ❄ SA (12/21), 11am-4pm Firestorm holiday craft pop-up event with 18 local crafters, illustrators, fiber artists, jewelers, herbalists, woodworkers and
$ 2 0 AT T H E D O O R | 8 P M T U E S D AY, D E C E M B E R 31 S T, 2 0 1 9 (828) 225- 6944 | 20 SOUTH SPRUCE ST. ASHE VILLE, NC 28801
bladesmith. Free to attend. Held at Firestorm Books & Coffee, 610 Haywood Road THIRD THURSDAY IN MARSHALL • 3rd THURSDAYS, 5-8pm - Gallery openings, studio tours, shops, food and drinks. Free to attend. Held at Downtown Marshall
AUDITIONS & CALL TO ARTISTS ARTSCAPE BANNER • Through SA (1/18) - Applications accepted for artists who wish to participate in the 2020 ArtScape Banner Project in downtown Hendersonville. Information: artscapehvl.org.
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
by Edwin Arnaudin | Send your arts news to email@example.com
Giri and Uma Peters
With a decent amount of years left until they graduate from high school, the brothersister duo of Giri Peters (14 years old) and Uma Peters (11) already have a more impressive resumé than most artists two or three times their age. The Nashville-based old-time duo has performed at The Kennedy Center, collaborated with Rhiannon Giddens and tracked their debut album, Origins, at Jerry Douglas’ studio. Featuring Giri on fiddle, guitar and mandolin, and Uma on fiddle and banjo, the Indian-American siblings put fresh, youthful spins on bluegrass and folk standards — and help further Giddens’ mission of reclaiming the diverse musical roots of traditional instruments. The Peterses take to the Isis Music Hall main stage on Friday, Dec. 20, at 8:30 p.m., to open for Brevard-based string band Pretty Little Goat. $12 advance/$15 day of show. isisasheville. com. Photo by Sarah Hanson
Closing out 2019 in style, Asheville alt-pop duo PrettyPretty is in the midst of a monthlong residency at Fleetwood’s. Each Friday night, bandmates Justin “JB” Bowles and Mike Clair play a set on a self-curated bill featuring some of their favorite musical friends. The Friday, Dec. 20, show is a Christmas party with fellow local artist Andy Loebs, who, according to Clair, will be “starting the evening off with his alter ego, a Scandinavian pop king” named Wynn Von Ripp. The series will conclude the following week with self-professed “carport rock supergroup” ROND, for which Clair is seeking to incite “end-of-the-year West Asheville block party vibes” with a potential neighborhood potluck and mini-set tribute to the late, great Daniel Johnston. Each show starts at 9 p.m. $7 ages 21 and older/$10 for ages 20 and younger. fleetwoodschapel.com. Photo by Cindy Kunst
Elves in the Piano While parents are busying themselves with The Elf on the Shelf, David Troy Francis is finding a better use for the holiday helpers. The celebrated Roswell, Ga.-based musician/ composer has been hard at work on a Christmas concert titled Elves in the Piano, which he’ll bring to White Horse Black Mountain on Sunday, Dec. 22. Francis will be joined by talented accomplices in cellist Franklin Keel (whom he describes as “outstanding”) and singer Carol Duermit (dubbed by the organizer as “fabulous”) in what’s being billed as “an afternoon of music, joy and fun.” The performance commences at 4 p.m. $18 advance/$20 day of show. $9 for children younger than 12. whitehorseblackmountain.com. Photo of Francis courtesy of the musician
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
Jamie Laval’s Celtic Christmas Now in its eighth year, Jamie Laval’s Celtic Christmas is officially a holiday tradition. For each edition, the Tryon-based violinist and storyteller recruits a talented ensemble for a showcase of family-friendly music, dance, poetry and stories that pay homage to ancient Celtic celebrations associated with the winter solstice and Christmas. The program emphasizes songs and carols from Scotland, Ireland, Brittany and Iceland. “This music is absolutely universal,” Laval says. “It resonates with listeners from all walks of life, largely because we draw from music on both sides of the Atlantic and from such a long span of history.” On Saturday, Dec. 28, at Asheville Community Theatre, he’ll be joined by Eamon Sefton (guitar), Rosalind Buda (various wind instruments and clawhammer banjo), Irish dancer Claire Shirey, soprano Megan McConnell and a Celtic harpist. 8 p.m. $35-$40. ashevilletheatre.org. Photo courtesy of Laval
Putting the Bunk back in Buncombe!
GALLERY DIRECTORY DANCE LEARN HOW TO DANCE! BALLROOM, SWING, TWO-STEP & MORE (PD.) Single or couple, enjoy learning with certified instructor: Richard & Sue, 828333-0715, naturalrichard@ mac.com, www. DanceForLife.net
MUSIC ACAPELLA - SINGING VALENTINE (PD.) Help out Cupid this Valentines Day! Quartet brings singing Valentines to your home, business, or restaurant. Order at ashevillebarbershop. com 866.290.7269
'THE NUTCRACKER' ❄ TH (12/19) through SA (12/21) - The Ballet Conservatory of Asheville presents The Nutcracker. Thurs. & Fri.: 4:30 & 7:30pm, Sat.: 10am. $16-$30. Held at Wortham Center for the Performing Arts, 18 Biltmore Ave.
AFRICAN DRUM LESSONS AT SKINNY BEATS SOUND SHOP (PD.) Wednesdays 6pm. Billy Zanski teaches a fun approach to connecting with your inner rhythm. Drop-ins welcome. • Drums provided. $15/class. (828) 768-2826. www. skinnybeatsdrums. com
ECSTATIC DANCE AND YOGA FUSION ❄ SA (12/21), 2:30-5pm - Winter Solstice dance with tribal fusion dance music artist, Kaminanda. $15/$12 advance. Held at Pack Square Park, 121 College St.
ACAPELLA IN THE LIBRARY ❄ WE (12/18), 5pm - Asheville's acapella group the Asheville Accidentals sings winter songs. Free to attend. Held at Skyland/South Buncombe Library, 260 Overlook Road
IMPROVER CONTEMPORARY LINE DANCING • THURSDAYS, noon-2pm - Improver contemporary line dancing. $10. Held at Stephens Lee Recreation Center, 30 George Washington Carver Ave.
ASHEVILLE AIRPORT Terminal Drive, Fletcher ❄ WE (12/18), 10:15am - Sounds of the Holidays, East Rutherford Middle School, holiday music concert. Free. ❄ TH (12/19), 10:15am - Sounds of the Holidays, West Marion Elementary School, A.C. Reynolds Middle School and Owen Middle School, holiday music concert. Free.
INTERMEDIATE/ ADVANCED CONTEMPORARY LINE DANCING • WEDNESDAYS, noon-2pm - Intermediate/advanced contemporary line dancing. $10. Held at Harvest House, 205 Kenilworth Road OLD FARMERS BALL CONTRA DANCE • THURSDAYS, 7:3011pm - Old Farmers Ball, contra dance. $8/$7 members/$1 Warren Wilson Community. Held in Bryson Gym, Warren Wilson College, 701 Warren Wilson Road, Swannanoa
AMERICAN FOLK ART AND FRAMING ❄ The annual Wish List show features ornaments and mantel pieces for the holiday season as well as pottery, paintings and sculptures. Nov. 29-Dec. 30 64 Biltmore Ave. ART AT MARS HILL UNIVERSITY 79 Cascade St, Mars Hill • Exhibition of photography by Colby Caldwell. Nov. 20-Dec. 20
ASHEVILLE AREA ARTS COUNCIL • Through Our View We Find, group exhibition curated by Elliot Kulwiec. Dec. 6-Jan. 10 207 Coxe Ave. DOWNTOWN BOOKS & NEWS • Exhibition of paintings by Cheryl Eugenia Barnes. Dec. 13-Feb. 29 67 N. Lexington Ave. GALLERY 1 SYLVA • Small Wonders, paintings, photographhy,
• TH (12/19), 7:30pm - The Mountain Friends Trio, concert featuring vocal harmonies, dulcimer, autoharp, guitar and bass. $12. ❄ SU (12/22), 7pm - Mountain Folk Harpers Ensemble Christmas concert. $12.
WINTER SOLSTICE CELEBRATION ❄ SU (12/22), 2:30-4:30pm - Winter Solstice Celebration with Richard Shulman. $20. Held at UR Light Center, 2196 NC-9, Black Mountain
CHRISTMAS AROUND THE WORLD ❄ SU (12/22), 3pm - Christmas Around the World, Blue Ridge Ringers handbell concert. Free. Held at Congregational Church of Tryon, 210 Melrose Ave., Tryon
BUNCOMBE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES buncombecounty. org/governing/depts/ library • WE (12/18), 3pm - History Book Club: Mozart's Sister by Rita Charbonnier. Free. Held at Enka-Candler Library, 1404 Sandhill Road, Candler • WE (12/18), 6-7:30pm – Hear men read Eve Ensler's The Apology. Free. Held at Swannanoa Library, 101 West Charleston St., Swannanoa • WE (12/18), 7pm Book Club: Flat Broke With Two Goats by Jennifer McGaha. Free. Held at West Asheville Public Library, 942 Haywood Road
CHRISTMAS AT CONNEMARA ❄ SA (12/21), 11am-2pm - Christmas at Connemara with John Perkins playing holiday tunes on guitar. Admission fees apply. Held at Carl Sandburg Home NHS, 1800 Little River Road, Flat Rock
ASHEVILLE DRUM CIRCLE • FRIDAYS, 6-9:50pm - Asheville outdoor drum circle. Free. Held at Pritchard Park, 4 College St.
CHRISTMAS EVE SERVICE ❄ TU (12/24), 6pm Christmas Eve service with Richard Shulman. Held at Unity of the Blue Ridge, 2041 Old Fanning Bridge Road, Mills River
BLACK MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS 225 W. State St., Black Mountain, 828-669-0930, blackmountainarts. org
UKE JAM • WE (12/18), 3:30pm - Ukulele jam, all levels. Free. Held at Weaverville Public Library, 41 N. Main St., Weaverville
SPOKEN & WRITTEN WORD
SALUDA TRAIN TALES ❄ 3rd FRIDAYS, 7pm - Saluda Train Tales, storytelling to help educate the community of the importance of Saluda’s railroad history and the Saluda Grade. December topic is A Perry Como Christmas in Saluda. Free. Held at Saluda
wood, printmaking, jewelry and glass. Dec. 6-Feb. 29 604 West Main St., Sylva JACKSON COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARY • Jenean Hornbuckle's new landscape paintings and a series of prints on display at the Rotunda Gallery. Dec. 7-Jan. 7 310 Keener St., Sylva PINK DOG CREATIVE • Völuspá Vision Story – Valeria Watson explores Norse Mythology
Historic Depot, 32 W. Main St., Saluda
THEATER 'A CHRISTMAS CAROL' ❄ FRIDAY through MONDAY until (12/23), 5pm - Outdoor production of A Christmas Carol. Saturday performances preceded by the 3pm Montford Park Players’ Holiday Festival with local vendors and refreshments. Dress warmly. Free to attend. Held at Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre, 92 Gay St. 'A FLAT ROCK PLAYHOUSE CHRISTMAS' ❄ WEDNESDAYS through SUNDAYS until (12/22) - A Flat Rock Playhouse Christmas, musical. Wed. & Thurs.: 2pm & 7:30pm, Fri.: 8pm, Sat.: 2pm & 8pm, Sun: 2pm. $17-$64. Held at Flat Rock Playhouse, 2661 Highway 225, Flat Rock 'BERNSTEIN FAMILY CHRISTMAS SPECTACULAR' ❄ THURSDAYS through SATURDAYS until (12/21) - Bernstein Family Christmas Spectacular. Thurs.Sat.: 7:30pm. Sat.: 10pm. $31. Held at The Magnetic Theatre, 375 Depot St. 'HANDLE WITH CARE' • WEDNESDAYS through SUNDAYS
The Humor Issue:
focusing on the witch or wise woman and her role in prophecy. Dec. 6-Jan. 5 348 Depot St.
Asheville’s post-holiday recovery tool.
THE WEDGE STUDIOS • The WOWS - Women of WhiteSPACE, five women painters show their works. Dec. 7-Jan. 7 129 Roberts St. 28 E Main St. Brevard
Coming Jan. 1st
Contact the galleries for hours and admission fees
until (12/22) - Handle With Care, bilingual rom-com. Wed.-Sat.: 7:30pm, Sun.: 2 pm, with additional matinee Sat.: (12/21). $18-$38/$10 students. Held at NC Stage Company, 15 Stage Lane 'MIRACLE IN BEDFORD FALLS' • THURSDAYS through SUNDAYS until (12/22) - Miracle in Bedford Falls, musical. Thurs.-Sat.: 7:30pm, Sat. & Sun.: 2:30pm. $25-$30/$18 students. Held at Southern Appalachian Repertory Theatre, Owen Theatre, Mars Hill University Mars Hill 'MIRACLE ON 34TH STREET' ❄ THURSDAYS through SUNDAYS until (12/20) - Miracle on 34th Street, fantasy. Fri.: 7:30pm, Sat. & Sun.: 2:30pm, additional performances Wednesday, Dec. 18 & Thursday, Dec. 19 at 7:30pm. $26/$12 children. Held at Asheville Community Theatre, 35 E. Walnut St. THE SANTALAND DIARIES ❄ FRIDAYS through SUNDAYS until (12/22) - The Santaland Diaries. Fri. & Sat.: 7:30pm. Sun.: 2pm. Adults only. $20. Held at Black Mountain Center for the Arts, 225 W. State St., Black Mountain
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
JAKE SHIMABUKURO FEB
DUSTBOWL REVIVAL BILL ENGVALL
THE HILLBENDERS: WHOGRASS! LEO KOTTKE
BÉLA FLECK & THE FLECKTONES
TICKETS @ PARAMOUNTBRISTOL.ORG OR CALL 423-274-8920
HOME AND HEARTH: The roots duo of Joe Newberry and April Verch combine traditions of the Missouri Ozarks (where Newberry was raised and learned banjo), with Verch’s regional Canadian styling, reminiscent of where she learned to fiddle and step dance. Their holiday show includes original pieces, traditional hymns and storytelling. Newberry & Verch perform Music of the Season: From Canada to the Ozarks at The Strand in Waynesville on Sunday, Dec. 21, at 7 p.m. $18. 38main.com. Photo courtesy of the group
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 18
Nightly Supper starting at 5PM
Sunday Brunch from 10:30-3:30PM
Closed Mondays 828-350-0315 SMOKYPARK.COM
12 BONES BREWERY Robert's Totally Rad Trivia, 7:00PM 185 KING STREET NC Songsmiths, Laura Thurston, 8:00PM 5 WALNUT WINE BAR Les Amis, (African folk music), 8:00PM ALLEY CAT SOCIAL CLUB Karoake w/ Kari, 8:00PM ARCHETYPE BREWING Old Time Jam, 5:00PM ASHEVILLE CLUB BluesDay Tuesday w/ Mr. Jimmy, 6:00PM ASHEVILLE GUITAR BAR AGB Open Mic, 6:30PM
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Wing Wednesdays, 4:00PM CROW & QUILL Asheville City Horns (hot jazz), 9:00PM FUNKATORIUM Grass at the Funk feat. the Saylor Brothers, 6:30PM HIGHLAND BREWING COMPANY Woody Wood Wednesdays, 6:00PM ISA'S BISTRO Jay DiPaola, 5:30PM ISIS MUSIC HALL & KITCHEN 743 Haegtessa, 7:00PM JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Old Time Music Jam Session, 5:00PM
LAKE JULIAN PARK AND MARINA Lake Julian Festival of Lights, 6:00PM LOBSTER TRAP Cigar Brothers, 6:30PM ODDITORIUM Minorcan, Rickolus, Drunken Prayer, 9:30PM OLE SHAKEY'S Sexy Tunes w/ DJ Franco Nino, 10:00PM ONE STOP AT ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Disclaimer Lounge Comedy Open Mic, 9:00PM ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: Latin Dance Night w/ DJ Oscar (Bachatta, Merengue, Salsa), 9:00PM ORANGE PEEL Hometown Holiday Jam XIX, 7:00PM
OSKAR BLUES BREWERY Music Bingo, 6:00PM PISGAH BREWING COMPANY Acoustic Wednesdays: Kyle Travers, 6:00PM SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Artistic Collective Holiday Market (music, beer, art), 6:00PM FBVMA Mountain Music Jam, 6:00PM SKYLAND/SOUTH BUNCOMBE LIBRARY Acapella Music in the Library, 5:00PM SLY GROG LOUNGE Weird Wednesday Jam, 5:00PM SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN BREWERY Jazz Night hosted by Jason DeCristofaro, 6:30PM
THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE Solo Guitar w/ Albi, 5:30PM Ruby's Blues Jam, 9:00PM THE BARRELHOUSE Stephan Horvath w/ Aimless Vibrations, 10:00PM THE FOUNDRY HOTEL 3 Cool Cats, 6:00PM THE GOLDEN FLEECE Scots-Baroque Chamber-Folk w/ The Tune Shepherds, 7:00PM TOWN PUMP David Bryan's Open Mic, 9:00PM WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN Steve Leow & Clarinet Choir, 7:30PM
THURSDAY, DECEMBER 19
BLACK MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS Mountain Friends Trio, 7:30PM BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Cider Cinema: Elf, 7:00PM BROWN MOUNTAIN BOTTLEWORKS NC Songsmiths, Laura Thurston, 7:30PM CROW & QUILL Big Dawg Slingshots (western swing), 10:00PM
ORANGE PEEL Asheville Comedy Showcase, 8:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING OWB Downtown: Lenny Pettinelli, 9:00PM
POLANCO RESTAURANT Pop Up DJ Dinners w/ DJ Phantome Pantone Collective, 10:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: One World Family Band Jam, 8:00PM
PACK'S TAVERN Jeff Anders & Justin Burrell, 8:00PM
PURPLE ONION CAFE Jimmy Landry, 7:30PM
NYE Celebration with ReggaeInfinity! Tuesday, 12/31 • 10pm-1am
Caribbean Vegan Dinner 17 Taps & Domestics • Nightly Drink Specials
FULL KITCHEN • TIKI BAR Sun., Tue., Wed. & Thur. • 6-8Pm
Mon-Thur 4pm-2am • Fri-Sun 2pm-2am 87 Patton Ave – Downtown Asheville
ISIS MUSIC HALL & KITCHEN 743 EJ & Frances: Bagpipes and Bouzouki, 7:00PM
5 WALNUT WINE BAR Pleasure Chest, (blues, rock, soul), 8:00PM
LAKE JULIAN PARK AND MARINA Lake Julian Festival of Lights, 6:00PM
AMBROSE WEST Charlie Traveler presents: A Cajun Christmas with Beausoleil avec Michael Doucet, 8:00PM
LOBSTER TRAP Hank Bones, 6:30PM
ASHEVILLE CLUB Free Live Music, 6:00PM
MAD CO BREW HOUSE Andy Ferrell, 5:00PM
ASHEVILLE GUITAR BAR Will Ray and the Space Cooties, 7:00PM
MARKET PLACE Bob Zullo (pop, rock, jazz & blues), 6:00PM
WED. 12/18: HOLIDAY BASH POTLUCK & LATIN DANCE NIGHT POTLUCK- 8PM, DANCE NIGHT- 9:30PM HOSTED BY LATIN DANCE NIGHT CREW HOLIDAY DRESS ENCOURAGED
THU. 12/19: ONE WORLD FAMILY BAND JAM: NEW START TIME 9PM
1ST SET: HOUSE BAND: BEN FALCON, HUNTER PARKER, JD SMITH, KELLY FONTES & JAMISON ADAMS, FOLLOWED BY OPEN JAM
FRI. 12/20: FREEWAY JUBILEE’S HOLIDAY HULLABALOO 9PM
LOCAL 604 BOTTLE SHOP Vinyl Night (bring your to share!), 8:00PM
ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Phutureprimitive w/ An-Ten-Nae, 10:00PM
ODDITORIUM Pics Odd Santa, 5:30PM Party Foul Drag Circus, 9:00PM
BEN'S TUNE UP Offended! Comedy Open Mic, 9:30PM
OLE SHAKEY'S Karaoke w/ DJ Franco Nino, 10:00PM
39 S. Market Street • 254-9277
UPCOMING HOLIDAY EVENTS!
FLOOD GALLERY FINE ART CENTER True Home Open Mic, 6:30PM
27 CLUB The Thirteenth Day of Christmas, 9:30PM
$30 w/ Dinner • $20 Show Only • 8-10pm
AWARD-WINNING WING SPECIALS
FLEETWOOD'S Sneak Preview Screening of Killer Raccoons! 2!, 8:00PM
JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Bluegrass Jam, 7:00PM Quizzo Pub Trivia, 7:30PM
THIS WEEK AT AVL MUSIC HALL & THE ONE STOP!!!
ONE STOP AT ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Mitch's Totally Rad Trivia Night, 6:00PM 3rd Thursday Hersday (local rotating lineup & open jam), 10:00PM
FESTIVE OUTFITS ENCOURAGED, CLASSIC HOLIDAY TUNES AND SPECIAL HOLIDAY COCKTAILS
SAT. 12/21: WHITE CHOCOLATE DANCE FACTORY’S WINTER SOLSTICE BALL 9PM SUN. 12/22: PROJECTOR SHOWING OF “A CHRISTMAS STORY” 6PM SERVING WARM DRINKS, BEER, & POPCORN
MON. 12/23: HOLIDAY JAZZ JAM WAVL- 520 HAYWOOD RD. DOWNTOWN- 10 PATTON AVE.
Phutureprimitive EVERY 3rd Thursday Jam Vince Herman & Drew LITTLE RAINE BAND machine funk Emmitt w/ Ton of Hay [Tribute to
THU, 12/19 - SHOW: 10 pm (DOORS: 9 pm) - adv. tix: $15
THU, 12/19 - SHOW: 10 pm Bring your instruments! DONATION BASED COVER
(Robert Hunter Tribute) FRI, 12/20 - SHOW: 9 pm (DOORS: 8 pm) - adv. tix: $15
FRI, 12/20 - SHOW: 10 pm [Progressive Rock] DONATION BASED COVER
SAT, 12/21 - SHOW: 10 pm (DOORS: 9 pm) - tix: $10
Scrumptious LIve BAnD SAT, 12/21 - SHOW: 10 pm [Jamtronica] DONATION BASED COVER
LOCAL THURSDAY SHUFFLE - 10pm
Free Dead Friday - 5pm
Mitch’s Totally Rad Trivia - 6:30pm
disclaimer comedy - 9:30pm
Tuesday Early Jam - 8PM Tuesday Night Funk Jam - 11PM Electrosoul Session - 11:30PM
12/27 - Dirty Dead’s 2nd Annual Solstice Jam • 12/28 - Voodoo Visionary • 12/31 - Annual Ball in the Hall w/ The Grass is Dead & Songs from the Road Band • 1/3 - Interstellar Echoes - A Tribute to Pink Floyd • 1/4 - BomBassic, WiZO, Double Helix, Captain EZ World Famous Bluegrass Brunch - 10:30am-3pm Shakedown Sundays - 4pm-7pm MOUNTAINX.COM
@AVLMusicHall @OneStopAVL DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
C LUBLAND SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Sean Bendula, 7:00PM SLY GROG LOUNGE Freaks & Follies, A Uniquely Asheville Variety Show, 8:00PM THE 63 TAPHOUSE Weekly 8 Ball Tournament (sign ups at 7:00 p.m.), 8:00PM
COMING SOON WED 12/18 7:00PM–HAEGTESSA
7:00PM–EJ & FRANCES: BAGPIPES AND BOUZOUKI
FRI 12/20 7:00PM–NOUVEAUX HONKIES
THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE Davíd Serra's Classical Guitar, 6:00PM Pizza Karaoke w/ the Spins, 9:00PM THE BARRELHOUSE Ter-rific Trivia, 7:00PM THE GREY EAGLE Tab Benoit w/ J.P. Soars at The Grey Eagle, 8:00PM THE IMPERIAL LIFE The Roaring Lions (jazz), 9:00PM THE MOTHLIGHT The Moth: True Stories Told Live (Theme: Family), 7:00PM THE ORANGE PEEL Asheville Comedy Showcase, 8:00PM
PRETTY LITTLE GOAT 8:30PM–PRETTY LITTLE GOAT AND GIRI & UMA PETERS SAT 12/21 7:00PM–REV. BILLY RETURNS! 8:30PM–”BELLS WILL BE RINGING” KAT WILLIAMS WITH THE RICHARD SCHULMAN TRIO
SUN 12/22 6:00PM–WARM DECEMBER JAZZ W/ AMANDA HORTON & DANIEL KELLER 7:30PM–RUSS WILSON PRESENTS “HAVE YOURSELF A SWINGIN’ LITTLE CHRISTMAS”
FRI 12/27 9:00PM–HOLIDOSIO :: TWO INTIMATE NIGHTS WITH PAPADOSIO (NIGHT ONE)
SAT 12/28 9:00PM–HOLIDOSIO :: TWO INTIMATE NIGHTS WITH PAPADOSIO (NIGHT TWO)
SUN 12/29 6:00PM–PEGGY RATUSZ’S STUDENT SHOWCASE: VOICES ON THE VERGE 7:30PM–DIRTY LOGIC - A STEELY DAN TRIBUTE
TUE 12/31 9:00PM–NEW YEARS EVE WITH ELLIS DYSON & THE SHAMBLES
WED 1/8 8:30PM– THE JUSTIN RAY BIG BAND CD RELEASE
ISISASHEVILLE.COM DINNER MENU TIL 9:30PM LATE NIGHT MENU TIL 12AM BRUNCH 10-2 SUNDAY ONLY
743 HAYWOOD RD | 828-575-2737 48
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
TOWN PUMP Gold Light, 9:00PM TRISKELION BREWERY Open Irish Jam hosted by Cornell Sanderson, 6:30PM TWIN LEAF BREWERY Craft Karaoke, 9:00PM WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN Donna Marie Todd, 7:30PM WILD WING CAFE SOUTH Acoustic Karaoke!, 10:00PM WORTHAM CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS Ballet Conservatory of Asheville presents The Nutcracker, 4:30PM, 7:30PM ZAMBRA Dinah's Daydream, 7:00PM
FRIDAY, DECEMBER 20 185 KING STREET Adam & Elsewhere, 8:00PM 27 CLUB Bone Shaker: Industrial Dance Party, 10:00PM 5 WALNUT WINE BAR Sidecar Honey, (Americana, rock), 9:00PM AMBROSE WEST Brightest and Best: A Holiday Concert" w/ Robin & Linda Williams, 8:00PM
ASHEVILLE BEAUTY ACADEMY 3 Cool Cats, 8:00PM Barrio Candela LatinX Dance Party, 10:00PM ASHEVILLE CLUB BluesDay Tuesday w/ Mr. Jimmy, 6:00PM Free Live Music, 6:00PM ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Vince & Drew (of Leftover Salmon) & Ton of Hay (Robert Hunter Tribute), 9:00PM BATTERY PARK BOOK EXCHANGE Dinah's Daydream (Gypsy jazz), 7:00PM BLACK MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS The Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris, 7:30PM BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Jingle Juice Cocktail Release & Steal the Pint w/ music by Bradley Steele of True North (music & Santa visit 6-9PM), 11:00AM CAPELLA ON 9 @ THE AC HOTEL DJ Dance Party w/ Phantom Pantone DJ Collective, 9:00PM CORK & KEG Brody Hunt & The Handfuls (Christmas honky tonk), 8:30PM CROW & QUILL Firecracker Jazz Band (New Orleans style party jazz), 9:00PM FLEETWOOD'S Pretty Pretty, Andy Loebs, Wynn Von Ripp, 9:00PM FOGGY MOUNTAIN BREWPUB Sweet Potater Alligator (surf rock, jam), 10:00PM FUNKATORIUM The Holiday Hootenanny Allstar Bluegrass Jam, 8:00PM HIGHLAND BREWING COMPANY Woody Wood and the Lovedrugs, 7:00PM ISIS MUSIC HALL & KITCHEN 743 The Nouveaux Honkies, 7:00PM Pretty Little Goat and Giri & Uma Peters, 8:30PM JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Irish Session, 3:00PM Uncle Stu's Christmas Jam, 9:30PM LAZOOM ROOM LaZoom Comedy: Jay Light, 8:00PM LAKE JULIAN PARK AND MARINA Lake Julian Festival of Lights, 6:00PM
LOBSTER TRAP Hot Club of Asheville, 6:30PM LUELLA'S BAR-B-QUE Friday Night Live Music Series, 8:00PM LUELLA'S BAR-B-QUE BILTMORE PARK Friday Night Live Music Series: Riyen Roots, 8:00PM MAD CO BREW HOUSE The Moon and You, 6:00PM NEW BELGIUM BREWERY Natural Born Leaders, 5:30PM ODDITORIUM Curious Folk Presents: Wild Realms & Yule (medieval), 6:00PM OLE SHAKEY'S Third Annual Holiday Jam, 4:00PM Friday After Work Concert Series, 5:00PM ONE STOP AT ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Free Dead Fridays feat. members of Phuncle Sam (acoustic), 5:00PM ONE WORLD BREWING OWB Downtown: 5J Barrow, 9:00PM ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: Freeway Jubilee's Holiday Hullabaloo, 9:00PM ORANGE PEEL 8th Annual home for the Holidays FUNdraiser (music, games, photo booth, silent auction), 5:00PM
THE IMPERIAL LIFE DJ Dance Party feat. Phantom Pantone Collective, 10:00PM THE MOTHLIGHT Casey's Movie Trivia, 7:30PM
Downtown on the Park Eclectic Menu • Over 30 Taps • Patio 15 TV’s • Sports Room • 110” Projector Event Space • Shuffleboard Open 7 Days 11am - Late Night
THE OMNI GROVE PARK INN Andrew J. Fletcher (solo jazz piano), 2:30PM
t he g i f t o f g r e at f o o d a nd Gi ve k d r i n ! Gi ve a Pac k ’s Gi f t C a r d!
TWIN LEAF BREWERY 12 Days of Christmas, 6:00PM URBAN ORCHARD CIDER CO. SOUTH SLOPE De' Rumba w/ DJ Malinalli , 9:00PM WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN Suzy Bogguss, 8:00PM WILD WING CAFE Billingsley, 9:00PM WILD WING CAFE SOUTH A Social Function Acoustic, 9:00PM
SATURDAY, DECEMBER 21 185 KING STREET Empire Strikes Brass, 9:00PM
APPALACHIAN COFFEE COMPANY Free Live Music, 6:00PM
RUSTIC GRAPE WINE BAR Adi the monk (jazz, blues), 7:00PM
ARCHETYPE BREWING 80's X-mas Karaoke, 8:00PM
SALVAGE STATION Eleanor Underhill & Friends, 8:00PM
ASHEVILLE BEAUTY ACADEMY Christmas Burlesque Show, 9:00PM Dance Party w/ DJ Lil Meow Meow, 10:00PM
THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE DJ Smokifantastic (Sound stylist), 6:00PM Freedom's Friday w/ Slay the Mic, 9:00PM THE DWELLER Heather Taylor, (solo), 7:00PM
FRI. 12/20 DJ RexxStep
(dance hits, pop)
SAT. 12/21 A Social Function (rock & dance tunes!)
20 S. Spruce St. • 225.6944 packStavern.com
5 WALNUT WINE BAR Modern Strangers, (jangle pop), 9:00PM
PILLAR ROOFTOP BAR The Paper Crowns, 7:00PM
SOVEREIGN KAVA Bad Comedy Night, 9:00PM
Jeff Anders & Justin Burrell
27 CLUB Holiday Vendors, 6:00PM 27 Club Holiday Party, 9:00PM
AMBROSE WEST The Green Rumours w/ Miriam Allen, 8:00PM
SLY GROG LOUNGE Fabio, 9:00PM
ZAMBRA Jason Moore, 7:00PM
PACK'S TAVERN Dance Friday w/ DJ RexxStep, 9:30PM
SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Brother Bluebird, 7:00PM
ASHEVILLE GUITAR BAR Swing Step Band followed by The Travelling Pilsburys of Asheville, 5:00PM ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Machine Funk (Tribute to Widespread Panic), 10:00PM BLACK MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS The Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris, 7:30PM
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
CLU B LA N D
Local UPCOMING SHOWS: DOORS 6PM
GOOD GRIEF TRIO CHARLIE TRAVELER PRESENTS:
A CAJUN CHRISTMAS
THE GREEN RUMOURS
WITH MIRIAM ALLEN
WORTHWHILE SOUNDS PRESENTS:
REASONABLY PRICED BABIES
DEC 21 DEC 22 DEC 27
JULIE ODELL AND JOSHUA CARPENTER
DEC 22 DEC 27
TICKETS SOLD HERE: W W W. A M B R O S E W E S T. C O M B OX O F F I C E S : T H E H O N E Y P O T & T H E C I RC L E
BOOK YOUR WEDDING OR EVENT NOW: 828.332.3090 312 HAYWOOD ROAD
SALUT: Pictured from left, Drew Heller, Justin Kimmel, Justin Perkins, Luke Quaranta and Terrence Houston are the current iteration of Toubab Krewe. The Asheville-based instrumental powerhouse is going on 15 years as a collective. The group’s latest release, STYLO, highlights the mix of traditional African instruments with contemporary folk styling that propelled them into mainstream popularity. Wrap up the year with Toubab Krewe’s Hometown Holiday show at Salvage Station on Saturday, Dec. 28, at 9 p.m. $10 advance/$15 day of show. salvagestation.com. Photo by Camille Lenain
BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Tim McWilliams Trio, 6:00PM
ONE STOP AT ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Scrumptious, 10:00PM
CLOTH FIBER WORKSHOP Stitch & Witch: Yule (tarot, crafts, community), 5:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: WCDF Winter Wonderland Solstice Ball, 9:00PM
CORK & KEG Zydeco Ya Ya, 8:30PM
ORANGE PEEL Kid Hop Hooray! Indoor Dance Party, 10:00AM 18th Annual Make-AWish Benefit Concert, 7:00PM
CROW & QUILL The Burger Kings (proto rock n' roll), 9:00PM
E v e nts THURSDAY NIGHTS
18 to party, 21 to drink FRIDAY NIGHTS
Live DJ pop 40, hip hop, trap, R&B
V-12 Hookah Bar@Paradox
Booking available for all company holiday parties...
FLEETWOOD'S Acid Carousel, Kitty Tsunami, The Bralettes, 9:00PM FOGGY MOUNTAIN BREWPUB Leisurville (funk, jam), 10:00PM
Doors open 10pm nightly
Located in the heart of Downtown AVL
38 North French Broad Ave
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
PILLAR ROOFTOP BAR Paula Hanke & The Perfect Mix, 7:00PM
HIGHLAND BREWING COMPANY Chris Jamison's Ghost, 7:00PM
PURPLE ONION CAFE Aaron Burdett, 8:00PM
ISIS MUSIC HALL & KITCHEN 743 Rev. Billy, 7:00PM Bells will be Ringing: Kat Williams & The Richard Shulman Trio, 8:30PM
SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Derek McCoy Trio 8:00PM
JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Little Lesley, 9:00PM LAZOOM ROOM LaZoom Comedy: Geoff Tate, 9:00PM LOBSTER TRAP Sean Mason Trio, 6:30PM
PACK SQUARE PARK Ecstatic Dance & Yoga Fusion Dance for the Winter Solstice, 2:30PM
MAD CO BREW HOUSE Chris Caruso's 3rd Annual Christmas Show, 6:30PM ODDITORIUM Darsombra, Damiyana, Space Bear, 8:00PM
SALVAGE STATION Phuncle Sam, 8:30PM
SOVEREIGN KAVA Music Trivia, 6:00PM STRAIGHTAWAY CAFE Winter Solstice Ugly Sweater Party w/ Get Right Band Bash, 6:00PM THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE Winter Solstice Sound Meditation, 2:00PM Healer By Day, Hooker By Night, 7:30PM CommUNITY Salsa at THE BLOCK off biltmore, 9:00PM TOWN PUMP Rod Hamdallah, 9:00PM
TWISTED LAUREL DJ Dance Party w/ Phantom Pantone DJ Collective (rotating DJ's), 11:00PM
BATTERY PARK BOOK EXCHANGE Pimps of Pompe Trio (Gypsy jazz hip-hop), 2:00PM
UNCA KIMMEL ARENA Basketball & Beats at Kimmel Arena w/ Phantome Pantone DJ Collective (all ages), 6:00PM
BLACK MOUNTAIN CENTER FOR THE ARTS The Santaland Diaries by David Sedaris, 2:00PM Mountain Folk Harpers, 7:00PM
WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN The Muppets Christmas Carol, 2:00PM David Holt & Josh Goforth, 8:00PM
BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Sunday Brunch, 12:00PM Scott Moss & Derek McCoy, 3:00PM
WILD WING CAFE Karaoke, 9:30PM WILD WING CAFE SOUTH 28 Pages, 9:00PM WORTHAM CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS Ballet Conservatory of Asheville presents The Nutcracker, 10:00AM ZAMBRA Killawatts, 7:00PM
SUNDAY, DECEMBER 22 5 WALNUT WINE BAR Random Animals, (soul, rock, funk), 7:00PM AMBROSE WEST Worthwhile Sounds presents Julie Odell & Joshua Carpenter, 8:00PM ARCHETYPE BREWING Post-Brunch Blues, 4:00PM
FLEETWOOD'S Queer Comedy Party: A Very Queer Holiday Recital, 8:00PM FUNKATORIUM Gary "Macfiddle" Mackey (bluegrass), 1:00PM HEMINGWAY'S Riyen Roots, 11:00AM HIGHLAND BREWING COMPANY Reggae Sunday w/ Chalwa, 2:00PM ISIS MUSIC HALL & KITCHEN 743 Warm December Jazz w/ Amanda Horton & Daniel Keller, 6:00PM Russ Wilson Presents: Have Yourself a Swingin’ Little Christmas!, 7:30PM JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Irish Session, 3:00PM LAKE JULIAN PARK AND MARINA Lake Julian Festival of Lights, 6:00PM
ASHEVILLE CLUB Free Live Music, 3:00PM
LOBSTER TRAP Drew Matulich and friends, 6:30PM
ASHEVILLE GUITAR BAR Pot Luck & Musician's Jam, 3:00PM
LUELLA'S BAR-B-QUE Sunday Brunch w/ Hank Bones & Jon Corbin, 12:00PM
LUELLA'S BAR-B-QUE BILTMORE PARK Sunday Live Music w/ Leo Johnson, 1:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING OWB Downtown: Open Mic, 8:00PM
ODDITORIUM ODD Craft Night! Christmas Mutant Army, 3:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: Jazz Jam, 12:00AM
ONE STOP AT ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL World Famous Bluegrass Brunch, 10:30AM
OSKAR BLUES BREWERY Mountain Music Mondays (open jam), 6:00PM
OSKAR BLUES BREWERY Trivia Night, 5:00PM SLY GROG LOUNGE Open Mic w/ Mike Andersen, 6:30PM
SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Help4Hendo, 9:00AM Open Mic Night w/ It Takes All Kinds, 7:00PM
THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE Sunday Blues Holiday Style DJ Bingading, 7:00PM
THE BLOCK OFF BILTMORE Ambigious Roots w/ Jamar Woods, Brennan Dugan & Adam Chase, 9:00PM
THE BARRELHOUSE Weekly Original Music Open Mic, 6:00PM
THE IMPERIAL LIFE Leo Johnson Trio, 9:00PM
THE IMPERIAL LIFE DJ Dance Party feat. Phantom Pantone Collective, 9:00PM
WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN CaroMia, April B, Nicole Nicolopoulos (folk, R&B), 9:00PM
WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN David Francis & Friends, 4:00PM WILD WING CAFE NFL Sundays w/ DJ Razor!, 1:00PM WORTHAM CENTER FOR THE PERFORMING ARTS A Swannanoa Solstice, 2:00PM ZAMBRA Andrew Platt, 7:00PM
MONDAY, DECEMBER 23 27 CLUB Karaoke w/Terra Ware, 9:00PM 5 WALNUT WINE BAR CaroMia, April B, Nicole Nicolopoulos (folk, R&B), 9:00PM ARCHETYPE BREWING Old Time Jam, 5:00PM CATAWBA BREWING SOUTH SLOPE Musicians in the round hosted by Jon Edwards, 6:00PM JACK OF THE WOOD PUB Quizzo Pub Trivia, 7:30PM Open Mic Night, 9:30PM LAKE JULIAN PARK AND MARINA Lake Julian Festival of Lights, 6:00PM
SANCTUARY BREWING CO. Team Trivia Tuesdays, 7:00PM THE SOCIAL Open Mic w/ Riyen Roots, 8:00PM WHITE HORSE BLACK MOUNTAIN Christmas Eve Concert for the Community & Sing Along, 7:00PM
WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 25
O’SHEA FOR CONGRESS CAMPAIGN KICKOFF PARTY
19 TAB BENOIT THU
W/ JP SOARS & THE RED HOTS
CROW & QUILL Orphan's Christmas: Cheeky Christmas Music & Movies, 5:00PM
FUNKATORIUM Grass at the Funk feat. the Saylor Brothers, 6:30PM
ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: Latin Dance Night w/ DJ Oscar (Bachatta, Merengue, Salsa), 9:00PM
JON STICKLEY TRIO
W/ OLD SALT UNION
FEELIN’ GROOVY! W/ PEGGY RATUSZ, HANK BONES, PAULA HANKE
OPEN MIC NIGHT ASHLEY HEATH
SAT ASHEVILLE VAUDEVILLE
MINGLE & JINGLE:
HOLIDAY FREE! CRAFT MARKET
JEFF THOMPSON PLAYS JEFF BUCKLEY
“THE FUTURE WE DID NOT GET”- 6PM THE GRATEFUL BROTHERS 9:30PM
Asheville’s longest running live music venue • 185 Clingman Ave TICKETS AVAILABLE AT HARVEST RECORDS & THEGREYEAGLE.COM
TUESDAY, DECEMBER 24 ASHEVILLE CLUB BluesDay Tuesday w/ Mr. Jimmy, 6:00PM ASHEVILLE GUITAR BAR Christmas Eve Potluck & Carrolling, 5:00PM ASHEVILLE MUSIC HALL Tuesday Night Funk Jam, 11:00PM BOLD ROCK HARD CIDER Tacos & Trivia, 11:00AM HAYWOOD COUNTRY CLUB Turntable Tuesdays hosted by VTT, 10:00PM LOBSTER TRAP Jay Brown, 6:30PM LOCAL 604 BOTTLE SHOP Synth Jam Asheville, 7:00PM MARKET PLACE Bob Zullo (vocal jazz), 6:00PM ODDITORIUM Odditorium Comedy Night, 9:00PM OLE SHAKEY'S Booty Tuesday, 10:00PM
LOBSTER TRAP Bobby Miller, 6:30PM
ONE WORLD BREWING OWB Downtown: Jack Pearson's Comedy Cosmos, 8:00PM
ODDITORIUM Risque Monday Burlesque hosted By Deb Au Nare, 9:00PM
ONE WORLD BREWING WEST OWB West: FLOW, 8:00PM
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
Hosted by the Asheville Movie Guys HHHHH
EDWIN ARNAUDIN firstname.lastname@example.org
= MAX RATING
H PICK OF THE WEEK H
Bombshell HHHH DIRECTOR: Jay Roach PLAYERS: Charlize Theron, Nicole Kidman, Margot Robbie, John Lithgow, Mark Duplass, Kate McKinnon, Allison Janney BIOPIC/DRAMA RATED R
4 SOUTH TUNNEL ROAD • ASHEVILLE 828/
298 -650 0
FREE LENSES WITH THE PURCHASE OF ANY FRAME OFFER EXPIRES 01/18/20
SINGLE VISION STOCK LENSES ONLY. NON-STOCK LENSES WILL RECEIVE $95 DISCOUNT WITH COUPON. C ANNOT COMBINE WITH OTHER DISCOUNT S OR INSUR ANCE. SEE STORE FOR MORE DE TAILS.
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
There has been some criticism over the title of the film that tells the story of the women who brought down Fox News titan Roger Ailes. For some folks, Bombshell is too playful a title in a #MeToo era. While this is at least the fifth Hollywood film to bear this moniker, I think it’s perfectly fitting. The wordplay suits the tone of the film, the women at the center of the story and the scintillating Fox News headlines that have made the media outlet so popular. Bombshell opens shortly before the first Republican presidential debate in 2015. The chameleonlike (and Oscar-worthy) Charlize Theron as former Fox anchor Megyn Kelly greets the audience, giving the viewer a private tour of the company's studios and an introduction to the events that are about to unfold. It cleverly draws the viewer in and adds layers of complexity to the characters, including herself and Roger Ailes (played wonderfully by John Lithgow). Rounding out our bombshell blondes are Nicole Kidman as Fox host Gretchen Carlson and Margot Robbie as Kayla
BRUCE STEELE email@example.com Pospisil, a fictionalized composite character and Fox newbie. Kidman is impeccable as Carlson, who pushes the first domino by filing suit against Ailes after being fired from the network, saying, “Someone has to speak up, someone has to get mad if the situation is going to change.” Robbie’s Kayla is used to great effect as a career-driven, Fox News-loving, selfdescribed evangelical millennial and “influencer in the Jesus space.” Written by Charles Randolph (Oscar-winning co-writer of The Big Short), Bombshell is bright and quite funny — until it isn’t. Director Jay Roach, who's gone from the broad comedy of the Austin Powers and Meet the Parents films in the late ’90s and early 2000s to more politically driven dramedies like Trumbo and Game Change in recent years, proves a good match for Randolph’s script. As for viewers seemingly uninterested in the characters or scenario, you don’t have to like Kelly or Carlson to find the story compelling and compassionate. Neither is portrayed as a victim — they knew the game they were playing, but they also knew when it was time to change the rules of the game. Ironically, Bombshell is not likely to please the left or the right since it was created with a mainstream audience in mind. If Hollywood really wants to get serious about telling #MeToo stories, it needs to turn the lens on its own players. They’re coming for you, Harvey, and when they do, it’ll be a lot harder to swallow. Starts Dec. 20 at Grail Moviehouse REVIEWED BY MICHELLE KEENAN REELTAKES@HOTMAIL.COM
Black Christmas HS DIRECTOR: Sophia Takal PLAYERS: Imogen Poots, Aleyse Shannon, Lily Donoghue, Cary Elwes, Caleb Eberhardt HORROR RATED PG-13 The latest number in Hollywood's knee-slapping, elbow-flailing dance with progressive politics does a girlpower-fueled, social justice backflip — and falls on its face.
THIS WEEK’S CONTRIBUTORS
While starting out with promise, Black Christmas quickly goes bust — literally. The film's heroes, goddesses, divas — or whatever they'd prefer to be called — find themselves at odds with a professor who teaches "the classics," plus a bust of their college's founder. (Yes, the bust itself is a villain trying to subjugate women and place men in the eternal seat of power.) This is the only aspect of the film that manages to be clever in the age of Rhodes Must Fall and countless other campus agitations that center on demolishing statuary. In a time when real-life college students believe that marble or bronze can wield immense, almost supernatural power, the makings of a truly entertaining horror film go up for grabs. To that effect, Black Christmas starts out as the most brilliant satire of academic derangement to hit screens thus far, until you realize the sad truth: The movie takes the wokeness seriously. Without delay, a golden opportunity becomes a golden turkey. So seriously does director Sophia Takal take her wokeness that the politics completely upstage the actors and consume the entire plot like hungry termites. Likewise lost in the crumbling structure, the Christmas theme is simply ignored. The result is a messy, incoherent schlockfest that will fail to impress discerning horror fans and casual audiences alike. It's no longer new or especially bold to place women at the center of a slasher film. Quite the opposite, it's a necessary ingredient in the recipe. The resilient "final girl" has always been the force that finally puts the monster away and restores peace before the final scare. The girls in Black Christmas are not final girls, however, but insufferable automatons. Steer far clear of this movie. Check out Night of the Creeps (1986) instead if you're in the mood for some real collegiate tomfoolery. REVIEWED BY CHRIS MAIORANA STANORDAN@GMAIL.COM
Jumanji: The Next Level HHHS
DIRECTOR: Jake Kasdan PLAYERS: Dwayne Johnson, Kevin Hart, Karen Gillan, Jack Black, Danny DeVito, Danny Glover ADVENTURE/COMEDY RATED PG-13 Strangely, it doesn’t bother me that Jumanji: The Next Level is a nearly beat-for-beat remake of its 2017 predecessor, Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. In fact, I find it somewhat refreshing. There’s no need to reinvent the wheel just for a goofy, ’80s-style genre picture, after all — something I’m not sure is even possible when Dwayne Johnson is involved. Besides, sometimes walking into a theater knowing exactly what to expect is a welcome relief. Its laughs are earned, and its adventure is exciting, making The Next Level a better-than-average, if familiar, action/comedy experience. Once again, a group of friends is magically transported into a mysterious video game called “Jumanji.” While inhabiting the game’s avatars, they must work together to complete each level and save the world, or die trying. As with Welcome to the Jungle, the joke is that everyone winds up in the body of a character fundamentally opposite from their real-life self, prompting all sorts of comedic awkwardness. In what I suppose constitutes as a twist, the group is unexpectedly joined by a pair of bickering seniors who are naturally clueless in all manner of decorum and tact. Enter the big hook (and what I feared most): Kevin Hart mustering a passable Danny Glover impression and Johnson hamming it up as a 6-foot-5 Danny DeVito. This schtick has the potential to get very old very fast, but thankfully the film keeps things moving at such a pace that we’re never subjected to too much of it at a time. Director Jake Kasdan knows when to pull back and let well-executed action sequences take center stage. In this manner, the comedy thankfully complements rather than irritates. In the end, it’s a pleasant balance, with much of the load being lifted by Jack Black (who seems tacked on this time around) and a criminally underused Awkwafina. Some of the film’s best material, though, once again comes from Karen Gillan as the man-killing nunchuck expert, Ruby Roundhouse. With everyone
else competing for laughs, Gillan nearly runs away with the whole thing. Between the body-switching, the swashbuckling and the vintage video game consoles, The Next Level is a film the '80s would have killed for had anyone been able to combine enough tropes and invent the FX necessary to successfully pull it off. Its PG-13 rating seems excessive, considering it would have been lowend PG family material when I started going to the movies, but I guess that’s where we are now. The Next Level might not give us anything new under the sun, but it shouldn’t
have to. It’s enough. Suitable for spastic preteen nieces and nephews and grandparents alike, it may be the perfect holiday escape for the whole family. Yes, we’ve seen it before and
we’ll probably see it again, but if it’s fun you seek, fun you shall find. REVIEWED BY JAMES ROSARIO JAMESROSARIO1977@GMAIL.COM
SCREEN SCENE by Edwin Arnaudin | firstname.lastname@example.org
STARTING FRIDAY Bombshell (R) HHHH (Pick of the Week) JUST ANNOUNCED Cats (PG-13) A live-action adaptation of the Broadway musical, starring Taylor Swift, Judi Dench and Jennifer Hudson. Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (PG-13) In the conclusion of the legendary space saga, the surviving members of the Resistance make a final stand against the First Order.
CURRENTLY IN THEATERS 21 Bridges (R) HHS The Aeronauts (PG-13) HHH A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood (PG-13) HHHH Black Christmas (PG-13) HS Dark Waters (PG-13) HHH Fantastic Fungi (NR) HHHH Ford v Ferrari (PG-13) HHHHS Frozen II (PG) HHS The Good Liar (R) HHHHS Harriet (PG-13) HH Honey Boy (R) HHHHS Jojo Rabbit (PG-13) HHHHH Jumanji: The Next Level (PG-13) HHHS Knives Out (PG-13) HHHHH Last Christmas (PG-13) HHHH The Lion King (PG) HHH Marriage Story (R) HHHHH Midway (PG-13) HS No Safe Spaces (PG-13) HHS
#BONGHIVE FTW: Park So-dam, left, and Choi Woo-sik star in Bong Joonho’s Parasite. The South Korean social thriller was awarded Best Film of 2019 honors by the Southeastern Film Critics Association. Photo courtesy of Neon The Southeastern Film Critics Association has named Bong Joon-ho’s Parasite the best film of 2019. Among the group’s members are Asheville writers Michelle Keenan (Xpress; Rapid River), Jill Boniske (chickflix.net), independent reviewers Marcianne Miller and Tony Kiss, Bruce Steele (Xpress; AshevilleMovies.com) and this writer (Xpress; AshevilleMovies.com). Spots No. 2-10 on the best film list went to The Irishman; Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood; Marriage Story; 1917; Jojo Rabbit; Little Women; The Farewell; Uncut Gems; and Ford v Ferrari. Best actor went to Adam Driver for Marriage Story (runner-up: Joaquin Phoenix, Joker); best actress to Renee Zellweger for Judy (runner-up: Lupita Nyong’o, Us); best supporting actor to Brad Pitt for Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood (runner-up: Joe Pesci, The Irishman) and best supporting actress to Laura Dern for Marriage Story (runner-up: Florence Pugh, Little Women). Bong and his Parasite co-writer Jin Won Han earned best original screenplay (runner-up: Noah Baumbach, Marriage Story), the film took home best foreign language film (runner-up: Pedro Almodóvar’s Pain and Glory) and Bong finished second to Martin Scorsese’s
work on The Irishman in the best director category. Scorsese’s film also won adapted screenplay honors for Steven Zaillian (runner-up: Greta Gerwig, Little Women) and placed behind only Knives Out in the best ensemble field. Elsewhere, the legendary Roger Deakins was awarded the best cinematography prize for 1917 (runner-up: Robert Richardson, Once Upon a Time … in Hollywood), Apollo 11 was named best documentary (runner-up: American Factory) and Toy Story 4 fended off Netflix’s acclaimed I Lost My Body for best animated film. SEFCA’s Wyatt Award — named in memory of charter member Gene Wyatt and given annually to the film that best captures the spirit of the South — went to The Peanut Butter Falcon. The Huckleberry Finn-like adventure/ comedy is co-written/co-directed by North Carolina native Tyler Nilson, set on the Outer Banks (and filmed in the Savannah, Ga., area) and features numerous characters and situations indicative of coastal Carolina life. Runner-up went to Just Mercy, Destin Daniel Cretton’s emotionally rich dramatization of civil rights defense attorney Bryan Stevenson’s efforts to free death row prisoners in Alabama. sefca.net X
Parasite (R) HHHHH Playing with Fire (PG-13) H Queen & Slim (R) HHHHS Richard Jewell (R) HHHH Waves (R) HHHHS Zombieland: Double Tap (R) HHHS
FILM BUNCOMBE COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES buncombecounty.org/
governing/depts/library • FR (12/20), 3pm Friends of the West Asheville Library presents The Cider House Rules.
PG-13. Free. Held at West Asheville Public Library, 942 Haywood Road ❄ SA (12/21), 1pm - The Muppet Christmas Carol,
the Muppets perform the classic Dickens holiday tale. Free. Held at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St.
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
FREEWILL ASTROLOGY ARIES (March 21-April 19): The English word “hubris” means prideful, exaggerated self-assurance. In the HBO TV series “Rome,” the ancient Roman politician and general Mark Antony says to his boss Julius Caesar, “I’m glad you’re so confident. Some would call it hubris.” Caesar has a snappy comeback: “It’s only hubris if I fail.” I’m tempted to dare you to use you that as one of your mottoes in 2020, Aries. I have a rather expansive vision of your capacity to accomplish great things during the coming months. And I also think that one key to your triumphs and breakthroughs will be your determination to cultivate a well-honed aplomb, even audacity. TAURUS (April 20-May 20): For years I’ve lived in a house bordering a wetland and I’ve come to love that ecosystem more than any other. While communing with reeds and herons and muddy water, my favorite poet has been Taurus-born Lorine Niedecker, who wrote about marshes with supreme artistry. Until the age of 60, her poetic output was less than abundant because she had to earn a meager living by cleaning hospital floors. Then, due to a fortuitous shift in circumstances, she was able to leave that job and devote more time to what she loved most and did best. With Niedecker’s breakthrough as our inspiration, I propose that we do all we can, you and I, as we conspire to make 2020 the year you devote more time to the activity that you love most and do best. GEMINI (May 21-June 20): In the English language, the prefix “re” comes at the beginning of many words with potent transformational meaning: reinvent; redeem; rediscover; release; relieve; redesign; resurrect; rearrange; reconstruct; reform; reanimate; reawaken; regain. I hope you’ll put words like those at the top of your priority list in 2020. If you hope to take maximum advantage of the cosmic currents, it’ll be a year of revival, realignment and restoration. CANCER (June 21-July 22): I won’t be surprised if you’re enamored and amorous more than usual in 2020. I suspect you will experience delight and enchantment at an elevated rate. The intensity and depth of the feelings that flow through you may break all your previous records. Is that going to be a problem? I suppose it could be if you worry that the profuse flows of tenderness and affection will render you weak and vulnerable. But if you’re willing and eager to interpret your extra sensitivity as a superpower, that’s probably what it will be. LEO (July 23-Aug. 22): Does the word “spirit” mean anything to you? Or are you numb to it? Has it come to seem virtually meaningless — a foggy abstraction used carelessly by millions of people to express sentimental beliefs and avoid clear thinking? In accordance with astrological omens, I’ll ask you to create a sturdier and more vigorous definition of “spirit” for your practical use in 2020. For instance, you might decide that “spirit” refers to the life force that launches you out of bed each morning and motivates you to keep transforming yourself into the ever-more beautiful soul you want to become. VIRGO (Aug. 23-Sept. 22): “There are people who take the heart out of you, and there are people who put it back," wrote author Charles de Lint. According to my analysis of the astrological omens, your heart will encounter far more of the latter than the former types of people in 2020. There may be one wrangler who tries to take the heart out of you, but there will be an array of nurturers who will strive to keep the heart in you — as well as boosters and builders who will add even more heart.
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
LIBRA (Sept. 23-Oct. 22): Composer Igor Stravinsky was born a Russian citizen, but later in life became a French citizen, and still later took on American citizenship. If you have had any similar predilections, Libra, I’m guessing they won’t be in play during 2020. My prediction is that you will develop a more robust sense of where you belong than ever before. Any uncertainties you’d had about where your true power spot lies will dissipate. Questions you’ve harbored about the nature of home will be answered. With flair and satisfaction, you’ll resolve long-running riddles about home and community. SCORPIO (Oct. 23-Nov. 21): “Friendship is a very taxing and arduous form of leisure activity,” wrote philosopher and educator Mortimer Adler. He was exaggerating a bit for comic effect but he was basically correct. We all must mobilize a great deal of intelligence and hard work to initiate new friendships and maintain existing friendships. But I have some very good news about how these activities will play out for you in 2020, Scorpio. I expect that your knack for practicing the art of friendship will be at an all-time high. I also believe that your close alliances will be especially gratifying and useful for you. You’ll be well-rewarded for your skill and care at cultivating rapport. SAGITTARIUS (Nov. 22-Dec. 21): In 1933, Sagittarian artist Diego Rivera was commissioned to paint a huge mural in one of the famous Rockefeller buildings in New York City. His patrons didn’t realize he was planning to include a controversial portrait of former Soviet Communist leader Vladimir Lenin. When the deed was done, they ordered him to remove it. When he refused, they ushered him out and destroyed the whole mural. As a result, Rivera also lost another commission to create art at the Chicago World’s Fair. In any other year, Sagittarius, I might encourage you to be as idealistic as Rivera. I’d invite you to place artistic integrity over financial considerations. But I’m less inclined to advise that in 2020. I think it may serve you to be unusually pragmatic. At least consider leaving Lenin out of your murals. CAPRICORN (Dec. 22-Jan. 19): “People mistake their limitations for high standards,” wrote Capricorn author Jean Toomer. In my astrological opinion, it’s crucial that you avoid doing that in 2020. Why? First, I’m quite sure that you will have considerable power to shed and transcend at least some of your limitations. For best results, you can’t afford to deceive yourself into thinking that those limitations are high standards. Secondly, Capricorn, you will have good reasons and a substantial ability to raise your standards higher than they’ve ever been. So you definitely don’t want to confuse high standards with limitations. AQUARIUS (Jan. 20-Feb. 18): Historians once thought that 14th-century Englishmen were the first humans to track the rhythms of the planet Jupiter using the complicated mathematics known as calculus. But in 2015, researchers discovered that Babylonians had done it 1400 years before the Englishmen. Why was Jupiter’s behavior so important to those ancient people? They were astrologers! They believed the planet’s movements were correlated with practical events on earth, like the weather, river levels and grain harvests. I think that this correction in the origin story of tracking Jupiter’s rhythms will be a useful metaphor for you in 2020. It’s likely you will come to understand your past in ways that are different from what you’ve believed up until now. Your old tales will change. PISCES (Feb. 19-March 20): China produces the most apples in the world. The United States is second. That wasn’t always true. When Europeans first reached the shores of the New World, crab apple was the only apple species that grew natively. But the invaders planted other varieties that they brought with them. They also imported the key to all future proliferation: honeybees, champion pollinators, which were previously absent from the land that many indigenous people called Turtle Island. I see 2020 as a time for you to accomplish the equivalent, in your own sphere, of getting the pollination you need. What are the fertilizing influences that will help you accomplish your goals?
BY ROB BREZSNY
REAL ESTATE & RENTALS | ROOMMATES | JOBS | SERVICES ANNOUNCEMENTS | CLASSES & WORKSHOPS | MIND, BODY, SPIRIT MUSICIANS’ SERVICES | PETS | AUTOMOTIVE | XCHANGE | ADULT RENTALS SHORT-TERM RENTALS SHORT TERM VACATION RENTAL Our guest house is approximately 1,000 sf on two levels, studio floor plan, utilities, and cable included with 2 flat screen tvs. Country setting, 4 miles to Weaverville, 15 minutes to Asheville. Maximum occupancy 4 people. $1,600.00/month, $700.00/week, $175.00/day, 3 day minimum. No pets please. Phone 828 231 9145 Email email@example.com
EMPLOYMENT GENERAL FULL-TIME POLICE OFFICER A-B Tech is currently taking applications for a Full-Time position Police Officer. For more details and to apply: http://abtcc.peopleadmin. com/postings/5266 LIFE GUARDS FOR ASHEVILLE JCC YEAR-ROUND POOL The Asheville Jewish Community Center is seeking Certified Lifeguards. Our state-of-the-art facility offers a 6-lane, 25-yard competition indoor/outdoor pool with the only one-meter spring board diving board in WNC. https://www.jccasheville.org/employment/ certified-lifeguard/ TROLLEY TOUR GUIDES If you are a "people person," love Asheville, have a valid Commercial Driver's License (CDL) and clean driving record you could be a great Tour Guide. Full-time and seasonal part-time positions available. Training provided. Contact us today! 828 251-8687.Info@ GrayLineAsheville. com www.GrayLineAsheville.com
RESTAURANT/ FOOD DISHWASHER FULL TIME AND PART TIME DISHWASHERS at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. play an important role in the success of our Taproom & Restaurant. This entry-level position allows you the opportunity to learn how our kitchen works, gain and improve your culinary skills, and show your dedication toward a long-term kitchen career. Dishwashers thoroughly clean and inspect dishes, silverware, glasses and kitchen equipment. To Apply- Please visit our website https://sierranevada.com/careers/ https:// sierranevada.com/careers/
HUMAN SERVICES WAREHOUSE AND CDL CLASS B DELIVERY DRIVER POSITIONS AT MANNA FOODBANK https://www. mannafoodbank.org/ careers/ Warehouse: $13 - $13.50/hr CDL Delivery Driver(Class B) : $14.50 - $15/ hr Full-time, great benefits, welcoming work environment
PROFESSIONAL/ MANAGEMENT EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Big Brothers Big Sisters of WNC seeks a visionary Executive Director with demonstrated fundraising success to lead the organization and build on its mission to: transform children’s lives through mentoring and supportive services in Western North Carolina. See www.bbbswnc.org EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Nikwasi Initiative, a collaborative nonprofit in Macon County, is seeking its first executive director. See www.nikwasiinitiative.org for a full job description. Send cover letter, resume and 3 references to nikwasi.initiative@gmail. com.
TEACHING/ EDUCATION Rainbow Community School Seeks Division Head To oversee operations for the K-5 Division and contribute to a safe, inclusive, and dynamic culture. For details, requirements, and application visit rainbowcommunityschool. org
CAREGIVERS/ NANNY Live-in Caretaker Nice home on Airport Rd., Asheville. For friendly elderly lady. Will exchange free use of nice bedroom and bath ($600 p/m value), for your loving care. Some freedom during daylight hours. Must be an experienced caregiver, have car and be a licensed driver. Looking for good cook, honest and joyful, drug-free lady. Call Beverly 828-210-8724.
ARTS/MEDIA WNC MAGAZINE SEEKING A SENIOR EDITOR Ashevillebased WNC magazine is looking for a full-time Senior Editor to lead our award-winning publication. Publishing experience required. Details at wncmagazine.com/careers.
SERVICES HOME LOOKING FOR SELF STORAGE UNITS? Looking for self storage units? We have them! Self Storage offers clean and affordable storage to fit any need. Reserve today! 1-855617-0876 (AAN CAN)
HANDY MAN HIRE A HUSBAND • HANDYMAN SERVICES Since 1993. Multiple skill sets. Reliable, trustworthy, quality results. Insured. References and estimates available. Stephen Houpis, (828) 280-2254.
INTERIOR DESIGN DELIGHTFUL HOUSE PORTRAITS Great gift for the holidays. For new homes, birthday, anniversary, etc. Pen, ink & watercolor by Asheville artist Michael Havelin. (828) 712-5570 michaelhavelin. com
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WOMEN HEALING HEART TO HEART Welcome! I offer Heartfelt, Creative, Conscious, Caring, Generous, Freeing Personal Support through affordable individual sessions and free 15 minute “meet me” conversations. And if you are simply curious please connect with me and ask all your questions. To talk or reserve your appointment contact RUBY, (MA Counseling Psychology, Expressive Art Therapist, Earth Centered Interfaith Peace Minister), at 828.768.0477, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. PS: Sacred Healing Circles beginning in 2020. I look forward to connecting with each of you. Peace and Gratitude to all.
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MIND, BODY, SPIRIT BODYWORK TRANSFORMATIONAL MASSAGE THERAPY For $60.00 I provide, at your home, a 1.5-2 hour massage [deep Swedish with Deep Tissue work and Reiki]. • Relieve psychological and physiological stress and tension. • Inspires deep Peace and WellBeing. • Experience a deeply inner-connected, trance like state • Sleep deeper. • Increase calmness and mental focus. I Love Sharing my Art of Transformational Massage Therapy! Book an appointment and feel empowered now! Frank Solomon Connelly, LMBT#10886. • Since 2003. • (828) 707-2983. Creator_of_Joy@hotmail. com
CHANGE YOUR FUTURE For 37 years, Julie King has helped thousands create a happier, fulfilled life. She's a gifted Psychic, Counselor, Spiritual Mentor, and Licensed Minister. Call 831601-9005 or www. AcuPsychic.com. HE'S KNOWN AS THE CHRIST, THE BODHISATTVA, THE IMAM MAHDI, MAITREYA BUDDHA, ETC. He is inspiring major, benevolent, world changes. He loves everyone, & won't send anyone to hell. We'll all see Him shortly after the collapse of the corrupt world economic system. Learn more: www. share-international.org
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face-2-face education, workshops and sessions for all learners--audio, visual, and tactile. Learn to use Positive Hypnosis—science of relearning thru positive reinforcement, Emotional Freedom Technique, Neuro-Linguistic Programming, Birth Mix Personality Assessment, Past Life Regression.
POSITIVE HYPNOSIS | EFT | NLP Michelle Payton, M.A., D.C.H., Author | 828-6811728 | www.MichellePayton. com | Mind Over Matter Solutions books, online and
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TH E NEW Y O R K T IM E S C R O S S W O R D P UZ Z L E
ACROSS 1 Low poker holding
5 Graffiti signatures 9 Creator of Creative Cloud software
14 “Don’t Let the Sun Go Down ___” (Elton John hit)
edited by Will Shortz 15 Like sardines in a can 16 In 17 Nose decoration 18 Cause of nosewrinkling 19 Perilous perch 20 Ones that like to wallow in mud 23 Foot, in medical dictionaries 24 Eyewear, informally 25 U.S.S.R.’s Tu-144, e.g. 28 Eschews the night life 32 Repeat 34 Bears 35 Sign of sadness 37 Part of Caesar’s boast 38 “Obviously! (Duh!)” 43 Peut-___ (maybe: Fr.) 44 It’s a little under a football field in area 45 You, in a billetdoux 46 Eagerly embraces, as an opportunity 50 Continuing story about life 52 Used up, as a well
Coming Jan. 29th & Feb. 5th 828-251-1333 x 320 email@example.com
puzzle by Ed Sessa 53 Linguist Chomsky 55 City, informally 56 Carnival projectiles that might be directed at parts of this puzzle? 61 So-called “Godfather of Punk” 64 Former attorney general Holder 65 Corner recess 66 Way to go 67 Fit to be tried, say 68 Young explorer of TV 69 Some jingle writers 70 Order since 1868 71 Right away
1 Inducing an “Ooh-la-la,” say 2 Naysaying 3 “My turn to go” 4 Symbolic flower of Flanders Fields 5 Candy with a chewy center 6 Verdi work that may include camels 7 Latches (onto) 8 Some cough remedies
9 Blind rage 10 Club requirement 11 In disuse 12 Abandon, in slang 13 Before, in verse 21 Spanish direction 22 Word with cow, dog or horse 25 Gracefully thin 26 High-ranking 27 Nixon daughter 28 One of three in the Buick logo 29 One eating before a king 30 Off the mark 31 Dundee denial 33 Lacto-___ vegetarian 36 Maker of Colortrak TVs, once 39 Wise (to), in dated slang 40 Products made by Friedrich, for short 41 Shellacs 42 Got word (of) 47 Unclasp, as a coin purse 48 2015 Verizon acquisition
49 Writer Gay 51 One Direction and OneRepublic 54 Parable message 56 Computer data unit 57 Trough call 58 The Gaelic “uisge beatha,” meaning “water of life,” for “whiskey”
59 Said three times, a war film about Pearl Harbor 60 32-card card game 61 401(k) alternative
62 Role for John Huston in 1966’s “The Bible” 63 Iconic Russian department store facing Red Square
ANSWER TO PREVIOUS NY TIMES PUZZLE
Hunter is saying
Ye a r End Sale
• YES to No Payments until 2020 • YES to 0% APR • YES to 2-years No-cost Maintenance and 1-Year Exterior Protection • YES to Volvo Makes YOUR First Payment • YES to DOUBLE Your Hyundai Rebates • YES to a Great Selection
2520 Asheville Hwy., Hendersonville NC 28791 888-925-2085 • HunterAutoGroup.com No payments until 2020 which interest accruing from the date of purchase. All offers on select models and brands. Cannot combine offers with other discounts and offers. Must take delivery from new dealer stock. Rebates from Hyundai Financial and Hunter Hyundai. Must present ad to receive pricing. See dealer for details. 12/31/2019.
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
DEC. 18 - 24, 2019
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