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Western North Carolina’s Source for Weekly News, Entertainment, Arts, and Outdoor Information

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014 Vol. 15 Iss. 39

A resounding message: uphold slope rules in Jackson Page 4

Fired DSS director funneled payments to relatives Page 6



On the Cover Macon County leaders have decided to invest in a recreation complex that will include tournament-level softball fields, betting that hosting tournaments and attracting tourists could help offset the cost. But a split vote on the project by county commissioners shows that not everyone agrees. (Page 10) Donated photo


Scott McLeod. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Greg Boothroyd. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Micah McClure . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Travis Bumgardner. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Emily Moss . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Whitney Burton . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Amanda Bradley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Hylah Smalley . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scott Collier . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Becky Johnson. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Holly Kays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Garret K. Woodward. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Melanie Threlkeld McConnell Amanda Singletary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Scott Collier . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Jeff Minick (writing), Chris Cox (writing), George Ellison (writing), Gary Carden (writing), Don Hendershot (writing), Jake Flannick (writing), Paul Clark (writing).



Public turns out en masse against relaxed steep slope proposal . . . . . . . . 4 Swain DSS director loses appeal over firing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Jimmy Cleaveland’s SMHS Mustangs roll into playoffs undefeated . . . . . . 9 Despite cut in Parks and Rec. Trust Fund, groups still lining up for grants . 10 Police to replace old patrol cars . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Waynesville to install electric car charging stations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 Why don’t WNC residents eat more fruits and veggies? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13



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Revising steep slope ordinance just makes sense . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16

A&E Metal artist takes his talent to public schools . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20


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Smoky Mountain News



Jackson public delivers message loud and clear: uphold steep slope rules

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

More than 150 people packed into a public hearing on steep slope rules in Jackson County this week, with none piping up to voice support for watering down the regulations. Becky Johnson photo BY B ECKY JOHNSON STAFF WRITER standing-room only crowd turned out for a public hearing on steep slope rules in Jackson County last week and implored county leaders to uphold existing protections against mountainside development. For more than two hours, the audience railed against proposed revisions that would weaken building regulations on steep slopes. Not a single person spoke in favor of the proposed revisions. More than 40 speakers took the microphone at the hearing. Some delivered Power Points and recited carefully crafted speeches. Some ad-libbed poignant spiritual messages. Others made arguments rooted in sci-

ence. One even sang an original Appalachian ballad lamenting the mountains being torn down by bulldozers. Many in the crowd wore homemade “I (heart) the mountains” buttons on their collars and several held up signs reading “Save Our Mountains.” The impassioned speeches were frequently marked by applause despite warnings from the hearing moderator that applause would be docked from the speakers’ allotted time. A speaker occasionally bumped up against the three-minute limit, but someone from the audience would pipe up from the floor, volunteering to yield their own time so the speaker on deck could finish. Comments fell into a few general cate-

What was said

lective space matters.”


Take a drive-by tour of some steep slope comments at last week’s hearing

“A hundred years from now everybody in this room will have passed on but the mountains will still be baring the scars that we leave on them. We should respect these treasures that have been entrusted to us. The air that we breathe, the water we drink, and the space we share is 4 what we have in common. Our col-

— Stephanie Kompathoom

gories: • Mountain views are an economic asset and should not be despoiled. • A handful of developers would be enriched at the expense of the greater good. • The county’s sense of place and quality of life for those already living here would be sacrificed. • The environment would be compromised. • Landslides and slope failure would increase. • Protecting the mountains is the moral and ethical thing to do for future generations • The proposed changes are arbitrary, and not based on science and research. Several speakers tackled scientific aspects of the ordinance, including a 10minute presentation, laden with numbers, graphs and study citations, by Ken Brown of the Tuckaseigee community. The luxurious time allotment was afforded to Brown since he represented a coalition, namely the self-anointed Jackson Conservation Voters. He discussed the unknown variables of landslide risk and groundwater carrying capacity, both of which are the subject of ongoing studies, but the jury is still out. “Why should we weaken current rules before we have sufficient data?” asked Brown, a theme echoed by other speakers who urged caution. “Until the results are in, don’t put the cart before the horse,” said Roger Clapp with the Watershed Association of the Tuckaseigee River. The county’s existing steep slope rules put in place in 2007 were among the most restrictive anywhere in the mountains at the time. The new watered-down version would allow for denser development on mountainsides, more clearing and excavation, bigger building footprints and less consideration for viewscapes. The proposed revision would also lift a ban on ridge top construction. And the threshold for when the new ordinance kicks in would mean more of the mountainsides are exempt from the rules. Nonetheless, the steep slope ordinance would still provide significantly more pro-

what is best for most of us for decades to come.” — Penny Smith

“To say, ‘Hey, let’s ease off these restrictions’ is just ludicrous.” — Greg Hall

“We have historically placed limits on what people can do because we live in societies and communities. It is why we have government and why we hope our leaders govern well, wisely, and with their decisions based not simply what may prove popular with a particular set of interest groups at a particular moment, but

“Everybody owns the view. It is a public asset like clean air and clean water. It seems to be aesthetics have been relegated to a second- or thirdtier concern. I want to know what studies told you aesthetics weren’t important. The board’s failure to recognize aesthetics caters to the short term special interests of some Realtors and some developers at the expense of the greater good.” — Roger Turner

tections than most mountain counties. The Jackson County Planning Board has spent 14 months reviewing the ordinance line-by-line and making changes. The planning board pledged to take public comments into consideration before adopting a final version. “The public comments made here tonight will be taken into consideration for the ordinance to be further revised,” Green said.

Roger Clapp.

More: • See the Opinion section of this week’s paper for a guest column by a member of the Jackson County planning board that explains the rationale behind some of the proposed changes. • To watch a video of the steep slope public hearing, go to watch?v=VJui3AaOTCw But one audience member questioned whether planning board members would indeed rethink their position based on what they heard from the public. If and when the planning board settles on the proposed revisions, they will then be sent up the line to the Jackson County commissioners, who have the final say on how — or whether — to alter the steep slope ordinance.

“The decisions y’all are making aren’t affecting me. They are affecting my children and my grandchildren and people that aren’t even born yet. I can see the same ridgeline today that ancestors saw. I can’t even imagine why you’d build on a ridgeline. I can’t even imagine. Why are we even thinking about changing this ordinance?” — Boyce Deitz

“When we see vast roads cut into the hillsides of these mountains, there is very little concern about the effect they have on the landscape visually.

That landscape is our bread and butter. That’s what people come here to see.”

“If I had known so many of you had this I probably would have stayed home, so thank you.”

— Maurice Phipps

— Catherine Carter, speaking to the large audience who turned out to speak against the revisions

“The proposed changes in density and ridge top development, if they are enacted, will make Jackson County as ugly as Banner Elk. That is not the future we want for Jackson County. Are these aesthetic concerns? Of course they are. We have a beautiful county. Don’t turn it into an ugly one.” — Bill Curwin

“This would be done for the sake of short-term economic gain for a few people at the expense of the greater community and our children. Let’s move forward together and not one step back.” — Avram Friedman

— Dan Perlmutter

— Geraldine Collins

“I don’t want to see those houses on the ridge tops. They are warts. They are always going to be there. If they want to see the other side of the ridge, cut a trail and walk up it and look over there.” — Drew Hooper

“I am going to boilerplate what everybody else said here, but even

— Adam Bigelow

“When I look up at houses on the ridge tops I am going to see your names. That will be your legacy.” — Dave Nestler

“Pretty is what sells. All you people in the real estate business know that well, don’t you?” — Bill Lyons

“You pull out the trees and what are you doing? You are wrecking the intersection of rainwater coming down and hitting the ground. You take the trees off the mountains? Trees have roots. Roots hold soil in place.” — Ken Walton

“For those who say, ‘It is my land and I should have the right to do on it what I want’ — that is outdated. We can no longer afford the luxury of living in isolation amongst one another…Why do you think those rogue developers came to Jackson County to build their gated communities for their wealthy friends from New York and Florida? Because we had no rules.” — Thomas Crowe

“I do not want to bar the door to these newcomers. I welcome them but on the condition their homes don’t mess things up for the rest of us. They come here because it is beautiful, and we should not allow them or the developers who entice them here to destroy that beauty. I cannot understand why you wouldn’t want to protect that with every fiber of your being.”

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“It is economically short-sighted and unwise. The main resource of Jackson County is our landscape. To clutter the landscape is to foul our own nest and poison the economic well for those who come afterwards. Restrictive regulations may cost more to build on, but that’s only proper and the rich will pay for it. To protect our economic future should be the guiding principal of this planning board.”

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— Duke Smith

“I don’t know how you capture storm water on a 40 percent slope. How do you do it? Where do you put it? A big swimming pool? I’ve been in this 30 years and I don’t know.”

“We’ve been here for two hours, and no one has spoken in favor of changing the ordinance at all.” — David Claxton

— Roger Clapp, on run-off from steep slope development muddying creeks and rivers

“I don’t even understand why we are considering backing up. Why would we so quickly after 2007 diminish the requirements? Some say that these proposed changes are being driven in part by money. Money to be spent and money to be made.” — Susan Leveille

“I think this rewrite has more to do with ideology than facts, data or experience. It is a reactionary effort to jumpstart the economy, but is it really needed? We’ve had more deeds recorded and more building going on here than any surrounding

“People dream their dreams of a million dollar bill. Visualize it as another mansion on the hill. Cut a road to the top to look down from the sky. Now, the messes they are makin` it`s enough to make you cry. They are gradin` these roads way too steep. And the cost we’ll pay later won’t be nowhere cheap. Little thought’s ever given to our precious watersheds. Now, come on, mountain neighbors, we have got to use our heads.”

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“Tourism is so important and is the driving economic force of this area. Studies show the development of steeps slopes and ridges detract from the economic viability. The market that supports second homes over heritage and nature-based tourism is ill-advised. Development should not detract from but improve the quality of life now and in the future.”


Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

“It is an erythema to me. These mountains are some of the oldest on earth. It is important for you folks not to scarify these mountain slopes. They have to be held as a legacy for our children and grandchildren.”

counties, even with our strong regulations — or perhaps maybe even because of our regulations.”


— Fitzallen Eldridge

stronger. I am for as much regulation as possible for environmental, aesthetic and economic reasons. We need to protect the natural beauty to sustain the vital tourism industry and because it is the right thing to do.”

— Dave Waldrop, who performed an original Appalachian ballad penned about steep slope protections




State rejects former Swain DSS director’s appeal of firing

BY B ECKY JOHNSON STAFF WRITER wrongful firing claim by the former director of the Swain County Department of Social Services has been rejected by the state. Tammy Cagle was fired three years ago amid a corruption probe of her agency by the N.C. State Bureau of Investigation. Cagle was not criminally charged in the probe, and the reasons for her dismissal were ultimately unrelated to it. Cagle claimed that she was fired as a “scapegoat” in light of the public outcry over the corruption allegations. Cagle lodged an appeal with the N.C. Administrative Office of Hearings seeking her job back, as well as back pay. It was recently rejected by the state Administrative Hearing Officer, however, except for a token six months of back pay. “It is my impression she is glad the case has concluded and wants to move on. It took a number of years to resolve. Litigation of any kind is draining on everybody involved,” said Michael Byrne, an attorney in Raleigh who represented Cagle. The reason for Cagle’s firing was twofold. One reason Tammy Cagle stemmed from a series of unorthodox and irregular handling of monetary assistance applications on behalf of Cagle’s family members. (See related article) Another reason was Cagle’s communication with DSS employees about work-related matters, including the SBI investigation, while she was on investigative leave, despite instructions not to do so from the DSS board. Incidentally, Cagle was not fired as a direct result of the SBI investigation. The timing, however, was apropos. Cagle was put on paid leave shortly after the SBI corruption investigation was launched in February 2011, and then fired for good four months later — and so in the public’s mind, the two events have forever been linked. But technically, the SBI probe was not the reason for Cagle’s dismissal. It did, however, play a role in why she was placed on investigative leave with pay in the first place. The SBI was investigating an alleged cover-up by child welfare agents following the death of a Cherokee toddler while in the care of a relative. Family members had warned DSS that the relative caring for the toddler was unfit and suspected the toddler was a victim of severe neglect and possibly abuse. After the toddler died, social service employees fabricated records to cover up any negligence on their part and make it appear 6 that they had adequately investigated the

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014


Becky Johnson photo

allegations of neglect and abuse, according to police and court records. Cagle has not been charged with any wrongdoing in connection with the cover-up, although two lower-level employees were. But law enforcement records suggested Cagle was initially among those being investigated for their “potential involvement in the cover-up,” according to the case file. “The SBI indentified Cagle, along with one or more social workers, as, allegedly, participants in a meeting concerning the falsifications,” according to the wrongful firing case file. When the SBI launched its investigation three years ago, Cagle was put on administrative leave with pay and instructed not to have any work-related communication with her former colleagues. One concern was that Cagle’s “presence would have had the potential to intimidate agency employees from being forthcoming” during the investigation, according to the case file. Additionally, “Placing [Cagle] on investigative leave with pay furthered the overarching concern about maintaining the community’s trust in the agency in the wake of the death of Aubrey Littlejohn and allegations of misconduct,” attorneys for Swain DSS contended in written arguments.

FORBIDDEN CALLS Cagle called her former colleagues at DSS on several occasions while on leave and tried to talk to them about the ongoing criminal investigation and her own pending performance evaluation. Three employees documented their conversations with Cagle. Some of the conversations were merely agency gossip. But she also tried to interject in agency business, asked about the status of her employment investigation and talked about the criminal investi-

gation, according to the case file. Cagle denied this. She claimed that her former co-workers at DSS were longtime friends. She was not intending to talk about work, but brought up the SBI investigation simply because it was the talk of town. “Her intent in making the calls was not to conduct business, but in essence to gossip with friends,” Cagle’s attorney stated in written arguments. “If the subject matter strayed into forbidden areas, it did so only in minor terms that did not obstruct the investigation.” In her calls to Talmadge Jones, who was second in command at DSS under Cagle,

Cagle was put on paid leave shortly after the SBI corruption investigation was launched in February 2011, and then fired for good four months later — and so in the public’s mind, the two events have forever been linked. Cagle twice warned him that DSS Attorney Justin Green was “turning against us,” according to Jones’ account of the conversation. Jones immediately reported the conversations to the interim director of DSS, who had been brought in on a contract basis. The interim director told Jones to write up a summary of the conversations with Cagle. In Jones’ written log of the phone conversations, he claimed that Cagle expressed concern that Green had turned against “them.” Cagle said she had spoken to Green and “reminded him” that he had been present during a meeting following the toddler’s

death where they talked about it being “a very serious case,” according to Jones’ account of his conversation with Cagle. That meeting had also included Craig Smith, the child welfare caseworker who had been assigned to Aubrey Littlejohn’s case. Smith was later charged with doctoring records to cover up any possible negligence by DSS. When Smith made a visit to Aubrey’s home to investigate an unexplained injury, he told Aubrey’s caretaker she must take Aubrey to the doctor to have the injuries checked out. The caretaker never did so, however, and Smith never followed up to find out. However, Smith fabricated a record showing that he had followed up with the doctor and claimed the checkup had occurred when in fact it had not, according to police reports and the criminal charges. Apparently, Cagle had asked Smith about the doctor’s visit in a meeting following the toddler’s death — a meeting at which Green was allegedly present, according to Jones’ account of his phone conversation with Cagle. Jones said Cagle told him in the phone conversation that she had “reminded” Green of what transpired at the meeting with Smith. Supposedly, when Cagle asked Smith “What would you say if you had to testify in court?” and Smith “stated that he ‘would swear on a stack of Bibles’ that he had spoken to the doctor at Cherokee Hospital,” so goes Jones’ summary of what Cagle told him that she’d told Green. Cagle’s attorney later denied the veracity of Jones’ version of the phone conversations between him and Cagle. Regardless, the Administrative Hearing judge said the assertion that Cagle was merely calling her longtime friends at the agency to gossip was “not credible” and that her discussions with them were about the very things the communication ban was supposed to head off. “[Cagle] was well aware of the social and political uproar in the community over the Agency’s handling of the Littlejohn case, the impact the matter had on the trust bestowed on the agency by the public, and the media attention it drew,” the Administrative Hearing Judge wrote in his ruling. The interim director of DSS brought in on a contract basis even issued a staff memo reminding employees if they talked to Cagle, not to talk about work matters. Initially, the board noted two other performance issues during their performance review of Cagle while she was on leave. Those included: • Getting a stipend for using her personal vehicle for work, during a period of time when she was actually using a county vehicle. • Failing to pursue a Masters of Social Work degree as instructed by the board when hired as director in 2005. But these two were ultimately jettisoned from the official reasons later given for Cagle’s firing.


Cagle claimed the real motivation behind her firing was finding someone to take the fall given the uproar over the alleged cover-up and death of a toddler.


Fired Swain DSS director steered aid to relatives


The consultant investigating the payments said in general, the people receiving assistance appeared to qualify where criteria applied. But the report wasn’t without red flags. The most questionable irregularity was an application where Cagle signed her daughter’s name for her. “A man or woman on the street would not be allowed to sign another person’s name,” the audit report stated in admonishment of the protocol violation. Further, Cagle did not make any kind of notation that she had signed it on her daughter’s behalf, such as putting her own initials near the signature. Another red flag in the audit report: Cagle tapped domestic violence funds to help her daughter get heating assistance, without sufficiently explaining her daughter’s domestic violence plight. Cagle’s daughter had gotten a restraining order against her ex-partner eight months prior, but that alone would not qualify her for domestic violence assistance funds, according to the audit report. “There was little explanation of the domestic violence that was currently going on. There was no evidence in the record of continuing violence or of issues with PTSD that could be problematic eight months later. This evidence would be crucial in determining the appropriateness of using Domestic Violence funding for a gas bill,” the Work First consultant stated in her report. In addition to family members, Cagle routinely secured benefits on behalf of a woman who was renting a trailer that Cagle owned. Once, Cagle applied for rental assistance on the woman’s behalf when she got behind on her rent. The woman never visited DSS nor spoke to a caseworker to request the rental assistance herself. Instead, Cagle put together the application for the tenant, returning with it signed, along with a photo ID on loan from the woman. Cagle also brought in a written statement from her daughter, asserting that the daughter, rather than Cagle, was the landlord for the trailer Cagle owned. A rent check for $400 was then made out to Cagle’s daughter. Cagle also applied for heat assistance for the woman who was renting her trailer. The propane account for the trailer was actually listed in Cagle’s name, since she was the property owner. Cagle signed off on assistance checks that were

RECORDS UNSEALED The Smoky Mountain News first reported three years ago that three of Cagle’s relatives had tapped social assistance funds while she was at the helm of the county DSS. The article named only one of them, Cagle’s uncle Steve Moon, who is also a Swain County commissioner. But the article did not say how much he got, the identity of the other two relatives or the amounts they received. Records of who gets social service benefits and for how much are confidential. Those records ultimately came out during Cagle’s wrongful firing case, however. Cagle’s unorthodox approval of the payments was cited as a main reason for her firing, and were thus outlined in the case file. • Cagle applied for or signed off on payments totaling $706 on behalf of her two daughters for heat and food. • Cagle also marshaled through $318 in payments for

Checking in on the Aubrey Littlejohn case three years later Three years ago, a Cherokee toddler mysteriously died while in the care of a relative. The trailer where she was living allegedly lacked a heat source. When she was brought to the hospital, her core body temperature was only 86 degrees, and she was dressed in a soiled diaper and T-shirt. An autopsy report ruled her cause of death undetermined but noted it was not inconsistent with hypothermia. The N.C. State Bureau of Investigation launched a probe into an alleged cover-up by Swain County DSS workers, who were accused of falsifying records to conceal possible negligence by the agency. The agency had been warned of unsafe living conditions, neglect and possible abuse by the toddler’s caregiver. • Two lower-level employees were eventu-

S EE PAYMENTS, PAGE 8 ally charged with forgery for falsifying records and obstruction of justice. One of the two, Candice Lassiter, pleaded guilty to the forgery counts in 2013. The other, Craig Smith, has not been to court. • Meanwhile, Aubrey’s caretaker, Ladybird Powell, was charged with seconddegree murder in Aubrey’s death. But the largely circumstantial evidence against Powell would have made the charges difficult to prove at trial, so a plea bargain was reached for involuntary manslaughLadybird Powell ter in 2013. She was also convicted of extortion and felony child abuse. She is serving nine years in prison. • A civil suit against the Swain County Department of Social Services was filed by the family of the toddler, Aubrey Kina-Marie LittleJohn. It is still pending.

Smoky Mountain News

granted Cagle six months of pay and $5,300 in attorney’s fees. The judge in the case found the DSS board did not adequately detail the reasons for her firing. In a June 2011 letter to Cagle telling her she was fired, the DSS board failed to enumerate the specific instances when Cagle had violated the order not to contact DSS staff about work-related matters. It also failed to enumerate the specific instances in which she had acted inappropriately in signing off on benefits for family members. While the judge found Swain DSS had just cause to fire Cagle, failing to itemize the grievances in her initial firing letter will cost Swain County about $37,000 in sixth months of back pay and legal fees for Cagle. It will come out of the county’s general fund, according to Swain County Manager Kevin King.

paid toward the propane account in her own name, but technically on behalf of the tenant living in the trailer. Once, Cagle tapped social assistance funds to pay for a service call at the rental trailer when the carbon monoxide alarm went off. The gas company issued a bill for the service call to Cagle, since the propane account for the trailer was in Cagle’s name. No formal application for assistance was filed. Cagle simply signed off on funds to cover the bill. In Cagle’s wrongful firing case, she admitted some of the procedures were “apparent departures from standard procedure.” But the benefits were not improper or illegal, she contended. The audit found the payments were paid out of assistance funds that either had no eligibility criteria, or if there were criteria, the applicant would have qualified. The audit report stated that it was unusual for a DSS director to usher a family member’s application through the system or to complete the paperwork on their behalf. “The best path would be that the applicants came into the office seeking help as would any Swain County citizen. It appeared in all instances except one the applicants did not appear in the Swain County DSS offices,” according to audit report.

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

“[Cagle] denies any just cause for dismissal and alleges that she is being made the scapegoat for some issues with Swain County DSS that attracted widespread negative media attention,” according to Cagle’s suit. Cagle’s attorney claimed the death of Aubrey Littlejohn “apparently caused a great deal of consternation and/or discussion in the Swain County community.” In verbal testimony, Cagle had referred to the public backlash over the death of Aubrey Littlejohn as a “big todo” in the community. Cagle was represented by Attorney Michael Byrne out of Raleigh. Swain County DSS was represented by Attorneys Bill Cannon and Mike McConnell of Waynesville. In her appeal, Cagle claimed that she was “dismissed without just cause” and sought reinstatement to her position, back pay and benefits and legal costs. While the case was denied, the judge



BY B ECKY JOHNSON STAFF WRITER wrongful firing suit by Tammy Cagle, the former director of Swain County Department of Social Services, has shed light on a series of unorthodox payments funneled to Cagle’s family members for social assistance. Cagle personally steered the monetary benefits through the system for her relatives, deviating from the normal protocols and application process for people seeking aid. The Smoky Mountain News recently obtained the case file for Cagle’s wrongful firing appeal, which was finally ruled on late last year by the N.C. Office of Administrative Hearings. It contained telling and previously unpublicized records surrounding the reasons for Cagle’s dismissal — namely nine social assistance payments Cagle shepherded through the system on behalf of family members and a tenant who was renting a trailer she owned. The Swain DSS board called for an outside review in spring 2011 of the assistance benefits Cagle had helped her relatives obtain over an 18-month period. The review, by a Work First program consultant, concluded “there were incongruities” in how the payments were issued and suggested further investigation was warranted. “The handling of these has been done out of the normal way of conducting eligibility business in the Work First Program. There are more questions that may need an answer and they are outside the scope of my duties,” according to the Work First consultant who did the audit. Findings include: • Cagle personally signed off on some of the benefits, which was atypical. Benefits are usually processed and approved by lower-level program staff, not the director of the agency. • In three cases, there was no record of an application being submitted or eligibility being vetted, yet payments were approved. • In some cases, Cagle instructed lower-level staff to issue the benefits without proper documentation, which was also atypical. Benefits are supposed to be awarded based on objective criteria measured and weighed by staff. • In some cases, Cagle filled out the applications on family members’ behalf or instructed staff to fill out the applications on their behalf. The applicants did not appear to make their own applications.



PAYMENTS, CONTINUED FROM 7 her uncle after his house burned. • Cagle helped a woman renting a trailer from her get $687 in heating assistance, which was paid into a gas account listed in Cagle’s name. Cagle also helped the woman get $400 to pay rent on the trailer Cagle owned. The woman was a single mom with a low-paying job, according to the applications by Cagle. In some cases, Cagle signed off on the benefits herself. But several times, Cagle instructed employees to fill out the applications or to approve the payments. When interviewed by the consultant who conducted the review, one employee said “it made her uneasy” but she did as she was told. Another employee, Talmadge Jones, who was second in command at DSS at the time, said “it made him feel uncomfortable, but acted as the director requested,” according to the consultant’s report.


Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

The payments issued to Cagle’s relatives had initially come to the attention of the DSS board in fall 2010. The DSS board at the time issued a mild admonishment, mostly just telling Cagle not to help family members with applications in the future. The board discussed the issue as a confidential personnel matter in closed session during an October 2010 board meeting. Following the discussion, the board announced that Cagle had done nothing

wrong and even passed a resolution affirming “full support” for Cagle, according to the meeting minutes. However, the DSS board promptly passed a new conflict of interest policy prohibiting the director from approving assistance for family members, from signing their benefit checks or otherwise being involved in the decision-making process for assistance involving family members. It further states that family members of the director must apply through the same outlets and follow the same protocol as the general public. In her wrongful firing suit, Cagle pointed out that she had previously been cleared of any impropriety by the DSS board, and it wasn’t fair to have the issue dredged up again and used against her six months later. But a lot had changed in those six months, including the appointment of a new DSS board. Allegations of a DSS cover-up following the suspicious death of a toddler — and a subsequent SBI investigation — had led to loss of public trust and confidence in DSS. County commissioners had called on the sitting DSS board members at the time to resign, clearing the way for an all-new board to be appointed. Despite being “cleared” by the old DSS board, the new DSS board apparently wasn’t OK with how Cagle helped process benefits for family members. Cagle cried foul in her wrongful firing suit, however, citing her otherwise stellar personnel file. “[Cagle] was being punished for events taking place some time ago, and for which

Cleaning & Repair Sales & Installation 1547 S. Main St. Waynesville, NC



Tammy Cagle (right) at a DSS board meeting while she was still employed there three years ago. Becky Johnson photo she was ‘cleared’ by the former DSS board,” Cagle’s attorney stated in written arguments.

PAYMENT RUNDOWN The payments received by Cagle’s family members were made between January 2009 and September 2010. The individual payments, as outlined in the auditor’s report, included: • $75 for food and gas for one of Cagle’s daughters. Cagle instructed a DSS employee to fill out an application on her daughter’s behalf. Cagle said she would get her daughter’s signature at a later time. • $146 in heat assistance for Cagle’s daughter, who was living in a trailer owned by Cagle. A check was cut directly to a propane company to pay off an account listed jointly in Cagle’s name, as the property owner, and her daughter’s name, as the tenant. No application was found on file. • $485 in heating assistance for Cagle’s daughter, who was still living in Cagle’s trailer. An application existed this time, but Cagle had signed her daughter’s name on her daughter’s behalf. The auditor’s report said it was not legal for Cagle to sign her daughter’s name to the assistance application. The check was again made out to the propane company for the account listed jointly in the Cagles’ name. In making the payment request, Cagle said that her daughter was a domestic violence victim, citing a restraining order that had been filed against her ex-partner eight months earlier. The auditor’s report flagged the use of domestic violence funds in this case as questionable given the lack of explanation, however. • $400 in rent assistance for a woman who was renting Cagle’s trailer. The woman renting the trailer was behind on rent. Cagle put together the application herself, including hand-delivering the application to the woman and bringing it back to the office filled out. This was flagged as highly abnormal for the director of the agency, or even a rank-and-file social worker, to shuttle assistance applications around town. Although Cagle owned the rental trailer, she claimed that her daughter was technically the landlord and was the one renting it out. Cagle’s daughter never came to the DSS

office either, but Cagle brought in a statement from her daughter asserting she was the landlord. The rent assistance check was made out to Cagle’s daughter as the landlord. Cagle’s daughter cashed the check upon receiving it. • $277 in heat assistance for the woman renting Cagle’s trailer. Cagle signed off on the payment herself. A check was made out to gas company, but since Cagle owned the trailer, the propane account was listed jointly in her own name along with the renter’s name. • $80 for a service call after the carbon monoxide alarm was triggered at a rental trailer Cagle owned. The woman renting Cagle’s trailer apparently called the gas company when the carbon monoxide alarm went off. A $75 bill for the service call was issued in Cagle’s name by the gas company. Cagle sought benefits to cover the service call on behalf of the tenant. No application was on file. Cagle signed off on the check herself. • $380 in heat assistance for a woman renting a trailer Cagle owned. Cagle approved the payment and signed the check to the gas company for propane to be delivered to the trailer she rented out. There was no application on file for the assistance, however, and no narrative record of an application being submitted orally. • $123 for Steve Steve Moon Moon, a Swain County commissioner and Cagle’s uncle, for the power reconnection fee for his residence following a house fire. The application was not signed by Moon but had a note attached saying that Cagle had approved it. Cagle had instructed a DSS employee to fill out an application on her uncle’s behalf. Cagle said she would take it to him to sign at a later date, but apparently she never did. Moon owns a tire shop. His wife worked full-time for the school system, plus got biannual per capita checks for being an enrolled member of the Cherokee tribe. They had no children under 18 living with them as dependents at the time. • $195 for Steve Moon, a Swain County commissioner and Cagle’s uncle, to buy food after his home was destroyed in a fire.

The quest for perfection


Smoky Mountain basketball team heads into playoffs 24-0

ured it was over, for at least the first half, Smoky Mountain junior Cal Raleigh tosses up a three-point buzzer beater, making it 58-17 as the teams headed for the locker room. “We’re too fast for them — that’s it. Speed makes this team special,” said Cal’s grandfather Randy Dietz, heading to the lobby for a breather. “[Cleaveland] is a great coach with great ballplayers. We’re all proud of them, and I hope we do better. I hope we see them play at state.”


Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

The second half doesn’t fare much better for Brevard. Smoky Mountain pulls even further ahead, but this time with more focus on their in-the-paint moves, where proper passing and layup execution are vital to putting it in the hoop. And each time a timeout is called, Cleaveland is still on his toes, only to demand the same urgency from his players. A howl can be heard from inside the team huddle as Cleaveland instructs his team to not get lazy, not lose focus on bettering their plays. He’s a Smoky Mountain High School in Sylva recent won the boy’s basketball WNCAC conference title. The team (left) wrapped up a perfect 24-0 coach on a mission, which is to get the most season as they head into the state playoffs. Smoky Mountain High School Coach Jimmy Cleaveland (right). Garret K. Woodward photos out of the boys he believes the most in. “He’s definitely strict on them, but he gets BY GARRET K. WOODWARD Mountain team had a perfect season but finFurther down the sideline, Smoky his point across,” said Smoky Mountain senSTAFF WRITER ished 27-1 when it lost to East Rutherford in the Mountain Principal Jake Buchanan is all smiles. ior cheerleader Maryssa Belcher. “He pushes There is no “I” in team for Jimmy sectional finals. East Rutherford eventually won “It’s a good time to be a Mustang,” he them to do their best.” Cleaveland. the state title that year. “First and foremost, [Coach Cleaveland] said. “We have very high expectations and are “Listen, I don’t know where you’re going “I’m going to be honest with you, I can’t very excited for finishing up the season. Our cares about his kids,” Buchanan added. “He with this story,” he modestly said. “But, I sure enjoy winning. I just always worry about the kids have dedicated themselves to a common builds a relationships with his kids, he don’t want this about me. I want it to be next one,” Cleaveland said. “You can’t live in goal of working together, and they’ve worked demands the best out of them and they give it about these kids, for sure.” the past much. You’ve got to learn from very hard.” to him because they believe in him.” Head varsity basketball coach for Smoky things, but you’ve got to look ahead at what’s The clock soon reads 00:00. The game is The referee stands midcourt and tosses up Mountain High School in Sylva, Cleaveland is your next opponent.” the ball between the two teams. Smoky over, with Smoky Mountain victorious as the the leader of the undefeated Mustangs. The On top of being the head coach, Mountain grabs possession and never looked scoreboard reads 103-55. Cheers erupt on the team is ripe with talent, where teenage boys Cleaveland is also an assistant principal at back. Immediately, the home team scored a home team side. Conference trophies are are learning the fundamentals of what it takes Smoky Mountain. three-pointer, then another, then another, then brought to the court to be awarded to to succeed, on the court and off. “If you can coach, you can teach, and if Smoky Mountain for its incredible “It’s been a great season. We’ve got a great you can teach, you can coach,” he said. regular season. “We got off to a great start bunch of kids, hard workers,” Cleaveland said. “You’re dealing with young people and you’ve Smoky Mountain senior guard “They’re fun to be around, they get after each got to have a love for that, whether it be in the tonight and they played well. And Zachariah Carter felt great about other in practice. We’ve got experienced play- classroom or on the field.” the victory. that’s what we’re trying teach, ers, the kind of group where they understand Cleaveland also points to the school itself “Our team has a special bond. their roles and true meaning of being a team. as part of his success. We played as a team together, came which is that it’s a 32-minute They push each other, they rely on each other.” “I’ve been blessed with real good kids, and together on defense and pushed the Coming into the WNCAC Championship talented kids,” he said. “The people around tempo,” he said. “It’s good to look game no matter what — you’ve Game on Feb. 20 against Brevard, Smoky me, great assistant coaches, it takes so much. at it right now that we have a pergot to keep doing your thing.” Mountain was 23-0 for the season. I’ve been lucky to be at great schools that are fect season, but now we’ve got to Cleaveland attributes the team’s winning supportive of athletics.” look past that and keep going.” — Coach Jimmy Cleaveland streak to a keen sense of defense and camaCarter’s teammate, senior guard raderie. Jordan Couch, had similar sentiIPOFF TO GLORY then two more. The scoreboard reads 15-0 ments. “My philosophy is we’re going to start with the defensive end and work around from “We have zero wins and zero losses once The clock strikes 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 20. before most people in the stands have even there, try to make them score off of their The gymnasium of Smoky Mountain High found their seat. Each time Brevard brings the playoffs start,” he said. “So, hopefully, we defense,” he said. “We have to make sure we School is filled with anxious parents, rela- the ball down the court, Smoky Mountain’s can get six more wins.” do the little things. If you play defense and tives, fans, cheerleaders, players and coaches. defense takes it away like a kid stealing your And as the car engines in the parking lot shoot well, with those two things right, you’ve Standing courtside is Smoky Mountain lunch money — fast and with authority. crank up, with victorious fans heading home got a chance to win.” “It’s 15-0, and their best player hasn’t even in every direction, Cleaveland is happy about Athletic Director David Napert. Within hours of the Brevard contest, “It’s a unique group of young men who all scored yet,” a Smoky Mountain fan com- winning the conference title, but he’s already Cleaveland was ready to take the court. preparing for state. play well together,” he said. “They’ve matured a ments from the first row. “Hopefully we play well and have what it lot, and they have a winning attitude. This isn’t By the time Brevard finally gets on the “We got off to a great start tonight and takes to win,” he said. “We’re 23-0, now let’s the first time our basketball team has done well scoreboard, it’s already 21-2. Smoky they played well,” he said. “And that’s what go for 24.” Mountain proved relentless throughout the we’re trying teach, which is that it’s a 32either — we’ve been working at it for years. So, what does 23 straight wins mean to first half of the game. It’s a “rock’em, sock- minute game no matter what — you’ve got to ’em” defensive energy for Smoky Mountain. keep doing your thing.” school? INNING TRADITION the “It Add that to Smoky Mountain’s great With their record now 24-0 heading into means a lot to us and to the whole comThis year isn’t Cleaveland’s first run at per- munity,” Napert said. “This whole year for offensive rebounding and made free throws, the playoffs, Cleaveland isn’t satisfied. “Now, if you don’t perform, it’s over, and fection. In 2004-05, he led Pisgah High School athletics has been great for the school. There’s and you can see why the score was 55-17 with in Canton to an undefeated season that resulted been a lot of enthusiasm across the board for the last remaining moments ticking away in we’re excited for the playoffs,” he said. “Right the second quarter. And just as Brevard fig- now, we’re just looking for 25.” in a state championship. In 2010-11, his Smoky athletics here.” 9


Smoky Mountain News



Macon hopes for home run Will building ballfields to lure tournaments pay off?

BY HOLLY KAYS STAFF WRITER acon County commissioners decided in a split vote this month to spend $3 million building a tournament-scale baseball and softball recreation complex. “It’s been two years of pretty steady work, but it’s well worth it,” said Seth Adams, Macon County Parks and Recreation director. “I’m tickled to death that we can see the light at the end of the tunnel.” Commissioners bought a 48-acre site, dubbed the Parker Meadows property, early last year for $550,000 with an eye toward turning it into a ball field complex. That vote was a split decision as well, with two commissioners questioning the price tag — not only of the land but also the future cost to turn it into something. Previously, commissioners had discussed developing the area in smaller pieces, but ultimately they decided to undertake the entire project at once. Chairman Kevin Corbin, who joined Commissioners Ronnie Beale and James Tate in favor of the ball field complex, said that the county would save money in the long run by doing all the construction at once. In addition, the county would gain use of the complex earlier, and, if all goes as hoped, the community would begin reaping the economic benefits of traveling ball tournaments more quickly. Commissioner Paul Higdon, however, joined with Commissioner Ron Haven to oppose the motion. “I’m not saying this complex is not a good idea,” Higdon said. “I just don’t think it’s a good time to be doing this.” In a struggling economy, he said, government should be trying to reduce its expenses — and, therefore, burden on the taxpayer — rather than creating new ones. “I’ve seen significant changes I’ve had to make in my business,” he said. “I don’t think that’s too much to ask of government.” The Parker Meadows complex certainly won’t be cheap, although the $3.8 million cost is offset by a $500,000 grant from the state Parks and Recreation Trust Fund. And it will continue to cost the county money even after its completion. The design calls for a wide array of recreation facilities, including eight baseball and softball fields, a soccer field, courts for tennis and pickleball, picnic shelters, hiking trails and a nine-hole disc golf course. Adams will hire an additional 2.5 positions to supervise and care for the site, and he’ll also require additional funds for utilities and maintenance supplies. The rec park will likely cost the county an additional $166,000 in annual operating costs above the current recreation budget of 10 $624,000, Adams told commissioners.

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014


The plan still needs a few tweaks, but the concept for this $3 million recreation complex is on its way to becoming reality, less than a year after commissioners purchased the 48-acre tract for $550,000. Donated illustration

BASEBALL AS A MONEYMAKER However, rec complex proponents say, that’s not the whole story. The park will be more than just a place for Macon County residents to spend their leisure time, they say. It will boost the economic outlook for the entire community. “Our estimated economic impact is $8 million per year for ball teams coming in, so it’s going to pay for itself in a very short period of time,” Corbin said. The county would charge $25 per field per day, and income from the concession stands would provide some further benefit, but that’s not where the money is expected to come from. “The moneymaker is to get the teams here and have them spend money in our community,” Adams said. When teams travel to tournaments, they pump money into the economy though hotel bills and meals purchased in town, Adams said, and that’s good for everybody. “It’s a low-impact industry that, at the same time, brings a good bit of income to the area,” Corbin said. “It’s a very green industry.” Higdon, however, takes issue with the $8 million figure. Economic impacts are half science and half guesswork, he said, with the ripple effects of spending, job creation and reduced dependence on social services difficult to quantify. “A lot of this economic stimulus is hard to put a number on,” he said. “A lot of that is subjective.” And regardless of the numbers, he said, economic stimulus is not the government’s role. Instead, Macon County should focus on maintaining a regulatory framework conducive to business creation and growth. “I never saw any solid documentation from places that have these complexes what

this has done for the economy,” Higdon said. It’s precisely because of the economic benefits, though, that Claire Carlton, director of Haywood County Parks and Recreation, has been trying to for years to turn Haywood’s 22acre Johnson Creek tract into a tournamentlevel recreation complex. “I think a lot of people get stuck on what it’s going to cost to build a facility, but your return for the community has the potential to be so great, that should be the bottom line,” she said. Haywood County jumped at the chance to buy a large, flat tract of land when it became available several years ago for a ballfield complex. Similar to the rationale in Macon, Haywood leaders realized flat land was a rare commodity and put up $1 million to buy it when the getting was good. A master plan was created for the site, but Haywood leaders have not been willing to put up the additional millions of dollars it would take to make the fields a reality. So the property sits vacant, waiting.

OTHERS’ RESULTS Carlton refers to cases such as Rocky Mount, N.C., whose sports complex drew 1,252 teams, 76,913 players and guests, $2.3 million in overnight dollars and $8.6 million in total economic impact in 2012-13. “The single most lucrative thing that was ever built in Rocky Mount was the sports complex,” she said. She concedes that, with a population of 57,136 as of 2012, Rocky Mount is a much larger community than either Waynesville or Franklin. Still, she said, “the main point is the same — nice facilities can and do impact your community and its citizens in a positive way.” And as with anything, she added, it’s possible for a saturated market to result if every county were to build such a facility. But right

now North Carolina’s only tournament-level baseball complex west of Asheville is the Crow Complex in Cherokee. That facility isn’t seeing much action now, but it’s still capable of drawing teams, according to James Bradley, the Eastern Band of Cherokee’s director of community and recreation services. “I think over the last few years, with casino proceeds the tribe and the services it offers have grown exponentially, so the focus got shifted to other things,” Bradley said. In other words, the government’s capacity to initiate projects and services grew faster than its staff ’s ability to manage all of them. Combine that with often-full hotel accommodations, also a side affect of the casino, and it became difficult to keep the complex going — at least as far as large tournaments were concerned. It still enjoys plenty of local use. However, Bradley said, the pre-casino effects on the community were substantial. “There was definitely an economic impact,” he said. Corbin is hopeful the same will hold true for Macon County. “We’ve already had tournament directors contact us because they read in the media that we were considering this,” he said.


As a member of Macon County’s traveling baseball entourage, Butch Jean has long been part of that economic inflow — but to other communities. The Little League coach has participated in tournaments everywhere from Knoxville to Charlotte to Pigeon Forge, and he estimates that he spends about $400 each time on food, lodging and gas for himself, his wife and his grandson. “I’ve talked to many other people who do travel ball, and that’s a pretty common number,” he said. Typically, he’ll pay $80 or $90 for a hotel room and go out to eat at restaurants such as Red Lobster or Olive Garden, something he said the majority of the group does as well. Even at the last tournament he attended in Canton, Jean opted to get a hotel rather than make the drive back and forth from Franklin. But the main reason Jean supports the decision to build the rec complex has little to do with economics. He spoke in support of the project at the commissioners’ Feb. 11 meeting, advising them that it was a needed facility for the kids and that it would be in the county’s best interest to do it right, if they decided to do it at all. “I’m a very conservative person, fiscally and politically, but there are some things you just have to spend the money on. It’s a proven fact that kids that participate in things like that are less likely to get in trouble,” he said of team sports. “You can’t even build a cafeteria in a prison for $3 million.” Currently, teams enter a lottery for practice fields, and many of the fields are in such a state of disrepair that they are dangerous to play on. Recognizing that need, commissioners also voted to spend $7,500 revamping those fields, a motion carried unanimously. In Macon County, about 1,100 people play organized softball and


2006 ..........................................$45 million 2010 .........................................$25 million* 2011 ..........................................$27 million 2012 ..........................................$33 million 2013 ........................................$11 million**

baseball, and there has long been a need to increase the number of fields, Jean said. “As long as they’re going to do this and spend that money, do it right when at last you fhave some opportunity to make that investment,” Jean said. So, while there’s no question that the complex will improve recreation opportunities for area ball players, it remains to be seen exactly how the new tournament center will affect the bottom line of the county and its residents. Every community is different, so the benefits of a rec complex like Macon’s tournament-center-to-be are never uniform. However, the majority of the commissioners

is hopeful it will be a boon for the county. “We have that same attraction [as places like Pigeon Forge], but in addition we’re not quite as tourist-oriented and not quite as busy,” Corbin said, “so I think this is going to make it more attractive for folks to come over here.” The 48-acre Parker Meadows Recreational Park will include a lot more than just baseball fields. The plans call for a nature trail with Crossfit stations, a soccer field, tennis courts, a playground and pavilions with picnic tables, among other amenities. The goal is to have a grand opening at the start of summer 2015. Construction should

begin by this June. Of the $3 million cost for construction of the Parker Meadows ballfield complex, Macon County will dip into savings to pay for $1 million up front. It will borrow the remaining $1.8 million. At 2.48 percent, interest on the 10-year loan will cost an additional $250,000. That all adds up to $3.3 million, and the county has already shelled out $550,000 for the land, bringing the total price tag to $3.8 million. Many, though, are looking forward to the result. “We’re going to have something Macon County will be proud of once it’s all said and done,” Adams said.

* Drop in funding due to drop in real estate transactions during the recession. A tax on real estate transactions provided the trust fund’s revenue stream. ** Drop in funding reflects cuts by the General Assembly. Real estate tax no longer a dedicated revenue stream for the trust fund.

real estate tax made the fund vulnerable. It dropped by 50 percent from 2006 to 2010 simply due to the drop in real estate buying and selling. But it gained back 25 percent of its former value from 2010 to 2012 before the dramatic cuts last year by lawmakers. But even in a real estate slump, the funding level fared better than it did in the hands of last year’s General Assembly. One thing that hasn’t changed: demand for the grants from local communities. The number of applications has held steady at 70 or more a year. The grants aren’t free money. Counties and towns have to put up sizeable funds of their own, equal to or more than the amount of the grant. But their willingness to pony up for parks and recreation didn’t wane even as counties and towns suffered from the same recessionary woes as the state. “What was startling to us was when the bottom dropped out of the real estate market, there was no drop in applications,” Peek said. “These local communities were still willing to come up with the matching funds even though it was in the recession.” Statewide, the trust fund has doled out $173 million for 768 projects over the past 25 years.




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Smoky Mountain News

Another change made to the parks and rec trust fund by state lawmakers last year

The parks and rec trust fund does more than fund local recreation projects. The majority of the trust fund allocations — two-thirds to be exact — are earmarked for state park projects. The trust fund is used to buy land to add to existing state parks, or to create new state parks and natural areas. And some of the state park money is used for projects at existing parks, like campgrounds, visitor centers, boat docks, fishing piers, picnic areas, new trails and so on.


Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

BY B ECKY JOHNSON STAFF WRITER acon County can count itself lucky for landing a $500,000 state recreation grant to help pay for a softball and baseball complex. The N.C. Parks and Recreation Trust Fund was cut by more than half last year. While the latest cuts by the Republican-controlled General Assembly were the most significant yet, it has gradually been shrinking in size since the recession. The parks and rec trust fund has been cut by 80 percent since 2007. The highly coveted grant pool makes recreation projects more affordable and palatable for local communities to tackle. Greenways, swimming pools, riverside picnic areas, a skate park and ball fields have been built over the past decade in Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties thanks to the grants that offset the local cost. But the grant pool was slashed from $10 million in 2012 to only $4 million in 2013. And the number of grants awarded shrunk from 47 in 2012 to 14 in 2013. Perhaps more troubling to local governments that have come to count on the grant pool is the trust fund’s insecurity and volatility going forward. The trust fund used to have a guaranteed revenue stream pouring into it each year. A state tax on real estate transactions was funneled directly into the parks and rec trust fund. That was changed by the General Assembly last year. Now, the tax on real estate transactions goes straight to the state’s general coffers. That leaves the park and rec trust fund without a guaranteed revenue stream. Instead, it’s up to state lawmakers to decide how much to put in the trust fund from year to year. “They unhooked the parks and rec trust fund from the real estate tax revenue stream and made it its own appropriation,” fexplained Charlie Peaks, spokesperson for the N.C. Division of Parks and Recreation. Granted, having its wagon hitched to a

Fly Fishing the South



State Parks and Recreation Trust Fund revenue


Parks and rec grants decrease in state

was a shake-up to the board that decides on grant funding. The old board had three members from the 23 western counties. The new board only has one. The beach did not see a loss in representation. It had three members under the old board, and still has three. Meanwhile, the Charlotte area picked up representation: it now has three members on the board instead of one. The board overall was reduced from 14 to nine. Reasons for the shake-up are unclear, other than the new Republican majority in Raleigh wanting to get rid of old board members and appoint new ones of its own choosing. Rather than wait for the seats on the trust fund board to come up for appointment and name new members in an organic fashion over time, state lawmakers simply abolished the board and created a new one. This pattern played out more than once. “That happened with a variety of boards and commissions,” said Bill Ross, an environmental attorney in Chapel Hill who used to be the chair of the parks and rec board but was kicked off in the overhaul. Ross wouldn’t speculate on why, other than a general change in the political direction. “The answer lies behind whatever the motive was behind that bigger picture,” Ross said. John Stevens, an attorney in Asheville who also lost his seat on the trust fund board, said the work of the parks and rec trust fund had never been politicized. “Politics is never an issue, so I am at a loss as to why the legislature did what it did. It could simply be they wanted to put in their own people,” said Stevens. Only three members from the old board survived the shake-up and were renamed to the new board.

your friendly, local blue box — smoky mountain news 11


Old and reliable? Law enforcement lobbies for speedy, dependable fleets BY HOLLY KAYS STAFF WRITER quipment replacement schedules were some of the first line items on the chopping block for local governments when the economy tanked. Now that several years have elapsed, local law enforcement agencies are seeing the impacts. In a line of work where speedy transportation is a must, a run-down police patrol car can spell disaster, as it nearly did earlier this year when a deputy’s car broke down while responding to domestic violence in the rural Nantahala community. As officers worked to tag-team transportation, a woman was running across her yard as her boyfriend fired a gun at her. “If my family needed help, I would sure hope whoever is coming to see to the needs of my family would be able to get there and not have the excuse that the vehicle broke down,” said Macon County Sheriff Robert Holland. “People depend on us.” Before the recession, Macon County replaced five or six of its 25 vehicles each year, but when the budget went south, it stopped. Now, the county is working to get back on track. Holland plans to replace five vehicles this year, a move that will cost $160,000. This is merely getting back to the old schedule, however, and doesn’t address the backlog created by the hiatus. Seven of the department’s vehicles have logged more than 100,000 miles. While that

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014



Students to recreate Suffrage Parade

Waynesville looks to diversify fuel use The town of Waynesville plans to convert half of its fleet of police cars — 15 in all — to run on propane. Conversion kits have an upfront cost of $5,600 each. “The anticipated payback on propane conversions is between four and five years, but the life of our vehicles is between seven and eight years,” said Waynesville Town Manager Marcy Onieal. The additional tank will also allow the cars to travel up to 700 miles before refueling, though they’ll run on the cheaper propane fuel as much as possible. Propane costs about two-thirds as much as gas. It’s an effort that echoes one Jackson County kicked off last year, opting to outfit nine of its public transit vans with propane tanks, a decision that will save the county an estimated $26,000 per year in fuel costs. Haywood Public Transit also uses propane for its fleet. — By Staff Writer Holly Kays

might not be a big deal for the family van, it is for a patrol car. Patrol cars are often driven around the clock, and they have to be ready for pursuit at a moment’s notice. Of course, they also spend hours idling on the side of the road, so mileage isn’t necessarily the best indicator of use. Macon County wasn’t the only one to slough off on its replacement schedule in the wake of a struggling economy. Haywood County, which has 64 vehicles in its fleet, used to replace six of them every year but now only replaces four.

“We are keeping the cars around longer and holding onto considerably higher mileage vehicles than in pre-recession years,” said Heidi Warren, Haywood County deputy and public information officer. The town of Waynesville, meanwhile, has gone from replacing vehicles after 70,000 or 80,000 miles in the pre-recession years to

pushing them past 100,000 now. The town now has a new strategy to cut costs on police car replacements: doubling its fleet of police cars. The town just ordered 14 new patrol cars and one investigative vehicle with an upfront cost of more than $600,000. Currently, officers share patrol cars, handing off keys to the next officer when they change shifts. That increases maintenance costs because the cars end up running around the clock, said Waynesville Police Chief Bill Hollingsed. It also increases personnel costs, because officers spend about 20 minutes at the end of each shift cleaning out their cars for the next officer. “In the long run, the new plan saves the town money because the vehicles will be on the road for five or six years rather than every two-and-a-half to three years having to replace them,” Hollingsed said. “We’re right now the only other agency in the area other than Canton that does not have assigned vehicles.” The Waynesville Board of Alderman approved financing for the purchase, which totals $656,000 to purchase and outfit the 15 vehicles, including purchasing propane conversion kits so the cars can run on cheaper fuel. Propane is only two-thirds the price of gasoline. The vehicles are expected to be on the road in about three months. “In the long run, it is a cheaper program,” Hollingsed said.

The Women’s Suffrage Parade of 1913 will come alive at Western Carolina University at 5:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, with a re-enactment of the event’s 101st anniversary. “We hope everyone leaves thinking about the amount of courage that these women had to fight for what they believed in, how there is power in numbers and to never give up hope,” said Kacy Brown, programming chair for the Pi Gamma chapter of Delta Sigma Theta, which is coordinating the event. The public is invited to the 30-minute march, beginning at the breezeway outside the third floor of A.K. Hinds University Center. Participants will make signs beforehand, and a reception will follow in the University Center Illusions Club.

Learn about state voting law challenge A program on changes to voting laws in North Carolina and legal challenges to those changes will be held at noon March 13 in Franklin bt the League of Women Voters of Macon County. The League of Women Voters of North Carolina has signed on to a federal lawsuit challenging the changes. Chris Brook, legal director of state ACLU, will discuss the major changes to voting in North Carolina signed off on by the legislature and the status of the legal challenge. Held in Tartan Hall of the First Presbyterian Church in Franklin.

Car charging stations to be installed in Waynesville BY HOLLY KAYS STAFF WRITER Electric car owners will soon have the option of charging their vehicles in downtown Waynesville. An electric car charging station will be installed in a public parking lot at no cost to the town, thanks to a grant from Nissan that’s paying for three charging stations. The town will not be on the hook for the electricity that’s used, and it will even get to charge its own electric vehicles at the stations for free. The town doesn’t actually have any electric vehicles yet, but it plans to purchase two of them. The charging station in downtown Waynesville will be only the third electric vehicle charging station west of Asheville. The other two are on the campus of Haywood Community College and at a visitor center in Cherokee. Electric vehicles are cheaper to run than gasoline vehicles and are considered better for the environment. But they can only go about 100 miles on a full charge. That makes it hard for electric car owners to use their vehicles for trips. Nissan’s grant is intended make regional electric travel a reality in North Carolina.

“This particular grant is intended to make sure there are charging sites every 50 miles from the Piedmont to the Blue Ridge Parkway,” Waynesville Town Manager Marcy Onieal said. Locating the chargers in downtown Waynesville will allow tourists with electric cars to stroll and shop while their car powers up. As of now, however, electric car drivers are in the minority, with the scarcity of charging stations undoubtedly a factor in that reality. “You certainly aren’t going to have people using electric vehicles widely until there is infrastructure in place,” Onieal said. Overall, though, the goal is to make energy choices that ensure stability of supply and maintenance of the natural resources that make Haywood County — like much of Western North Carolina — a successful tourism destination and an enjoyable place to live. “This promotes air quality,” she said, “which is important for tourism in this part of the state.” Plans for the charging stations have been in the works since last year, but the Waynesville Board of Alderman just finalized a deal last

week with Asheville-based Brightfield Transportation Solutions to install the charging station in the Montgomery Street lot. There will be three charging stations: one will be capable of fully charging an empty battery in 30 minutes and the other two will take two hours. Solar panels will go in with the charging stations, installed on a canopy shading the charging area. The solar panels will not directly power the cars, but will offset the electricity needed to power the stations. Brightfield must pay for the electricity used by the charging stations. To cover its costs, Brightfield will sell the electricity over the power grid and charge the stations’ users. “It’ll produce about 50 kilowatts of power on a given day, which will be put back on the electric grid,” Onieal said of the panels. By contrast, most models of electric cars require between 25 and 35 kilowatt-hours to charge up. At some point, the parking spots with the charging stations will be reserved for electric vehicles only. But that won’t go into effect until at least 50 electric vehicles are registered in Haywood County.

Most people recognize that fruits and vegetables will keep them healthy, but a WCU study is looking at what keeps people from picking those foods off the shelf. Holly Kays photo

Cost, convenience are chief hurdles in getting people to eat well


Empty Bowl fundraiser planned at Open Door

Meet with health care navigators Two programs are being held to discuss health care coverage under the Affordable Care Act. Certified health care navigators from Mountain Projects will be on hand to provide free one-on-one assistance on how to sign up for health care coverage, and answer any questions. • Macon County Library, 10 a.m., March 1. 828.525.1300 or 828.400.4177. • Canton Library, 5 to 7 p.m., March 4. This informal drop-in session provides information in a one-on-one basis. 828.648.2924.

— April Tallant, WCU health professor

“She’s the whole reason I’m doing this project,” Tallant said. The bigger reason, though, is to promote healthy diets in WNC. People who eat more fruits and vegetables lower their risk of chronic disease, and because no study like Tallant’s has ever been conducted in WNC before, she said, it’s important to understand what stands in people’s way when it comes to putting together a healthy plate. “The end result to me will be a better health outcome and a better quality of life for the people in the region,” she said.


Theatre: The Squirm Burpee Circus

MAR. 3 | MON. 7:30PM | BARDO ARTS CENTER | $10

Music: Carolina Chocolate Drops


Music: Faculty Recital: Travis Bennett, horn

MAR. 6 | THU. 7:30PM | BARDO ARTS CENTER | $15

Lecture: Gloria Steinem Talk



Smoky Mountain News

The Open Door soup kitchen in Waynesville will hold its annual Empty Bowl Fundraiser from 3 to 7 p.m. Saturday, March 1. Local potters donate handmade bowls for the event, which are then sold, along with a hearty helping of soup, to everyone wanting to enjoy a good meal for a good cause. $20 will buy a bowl, plus as much homemade soup, cornbread and dessert as you want. And come hungry, because there will be multiple kinds of soup to try. The proceeds will go to support Open Door, an organization that provides warm meals and spiritual support for the homeless of Haywood County. 828.452.3846.

“Do we face the same barriers urban areas face, even though we’re surrounded by gardens and farmers markets?”

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

BY HOLLY KAYS STAFF WRITER reen space and gardens dominate much of the Western North Carolina landscape, but what determines whether people here actually eat the fruits and veggies that abound? That’s what April Tallant, health professor at WCU, hopes to find out as she crunches the numbers from her latest research project. “There’s not a lot of information out there about what does our baseline look like,” she said. “Do we face the same barriers urban areas face, even though we’re surrounded by gardens and farmers markets?” Rural areas like WNC have wider health disparities between the two ends of the

socioeconomic spectrum, and they’re also less studied than their urban counterparts. In fact, Tallant is the first to have looked at the barriers to fruit and vegetable consumption in the eight western counties — and what could help people overcome those barriers. “We’re already understudied. We already suffer deep health disparities,” she said. “We need to look at this in our region.” So, Tallant lined up focus groups, interviews and surveys with a total 242 participants, quizzing them on the factors that deter them from consuming fruits and vegetables. Most participants agreed that produce costs more than other foods and is more difficult to prepare. That, Tallant said, is consistent with the literature already out there. But unlike other studies of this type, Tallant’s research also looked into what helps people eat more fruits and vegetables. “I think probably what makes this study a

the effect of income, religion and food stamp and food bank enrollment on responses, for starters. “I feel like this is just the beginning,” she said. It’s a beginning that’s possible, though, with the help of Mountain Wise, a nonprofit that promotes healthy communities. Tallant launched the project after Sarah Tennyson, who works for Mountain Wise, approached her with the idea of funding it.


WCU professor studies healthy eating demographics

little more unique is we asked about facilitators,” she said. Over half of the survey respondents said they would be willing to eat more fruits and vegetables if a doctor told them to. Study subjects offered up their own ideas of what might prompt them to eat more fruit and vegetables. They acknowledged that there’s a lot of personal responsibility involved in diet and said that if they planned ahead better and chopped up fruits and veggies ahead of time, making them as easy to grab as a bag of potato chips, they would probably eat more of them. But, they said, classes such as menu planning and food demonstrations would help them do a better job of cooking healthy meals. The participants were well aware that fruit- and vegetable-rich diets are healthier, but they wanted help learning how to incorporate them into quick, budget-friendly meals. That knowledge might prove helpful to healthcare educators and extension workers. “That might be something you could build upon when you do these programs,” Tallant said. Other recommendations from the study include distributing recipe cards at grocery stores and farmers markets and improving advertising at farmers markets, giving prospective customers a better idea of what’s available. Participants also expressed interest in increasing salad bars and other vegetable offerings at grocery stores and restaurants. But there’s still plenty more to come out of the study. Tallant is continuing to examine



FOR MORE INFO – 828.227.7028 | ARTS.WCU.EDU 13



Smoky Mountain News

$1 million gift to Highlands-Cashiers Hospital Foundation matched by Mission

The former Mad Batter Bakery & Café will reopen in Sylva after a recent fire took out the Cullowhee business. Amanda Bradley photo

Mad Batter to reopen in Sylva

Highlands-Cashiers Hospital. Donated photo

The Highlands-Cashiers Hospital Foundation is $2 million richer thanks to a $1 million donation by philanthropist Jane Woodruff and a matching $1 million gift from Mission Health. Highlands-Cashiers Hospital recently announced it has merged with Mission, based in Asheville. “I am very pleased to make this gift to Highlands-Cashiers Hopsital, which has provided compassionate and quality health care to families in our local area for more than three generations,” Woodruff said. “I

believe this new partnership with Mission Health will strengthen our hospital and enhance its capacity to provide exceptional local health care.” The new Highlands-Cashiers hospital board will have nine local members and three Mission representatives. The HCH Foundation will remain a separate entity, under local ownership and control, and will continue to be responsible for providing financial support for the hospital’s capital and operational needs.

First-ever employee relations position created at WCU

Cullowhee who passed WCU everyday on his way to Asheville.

Western Carolina University has named Albert “Rusty” Marts as its director of employee relations, training and development. A new position at WCU, the director of employee relations, training and development was identified by Chancellor David O. Belcher last August as a way to improve the work-life environment for faculty and staff. “His focus on services aimed directly at supporting our staff and faculty will be invaluable, and it aligns well with our commitment to ‘invest in our people’ as outlined in the university’s strategic plan,” said Kathy Wong, WCU director of human resources. He was most recently the director of employee relations and affirmative action at UNC-Asheville. Marts is a resident of

Women’s group rewarded for community involvement The Women of Waynesville, a fundraising group that helps civic organizations and those in need, has raised more than $11,000 for Haywood County non-profits such as REACH, KARE and The Power of Pink Foundation, provided I-Heaters to five needy families in Haywood County and donated large containers of food to unsuspecting families in need. “We are excited about our 2014 year and we are looking forward to continuing on our path of raising money, bringing awareness, building community relationships, having a lot more fun and drinking a lot more wine,” said Nikki White, president and founder of the organization.

BY GARRET K. WOODWARD STAFF WRITER From the ashes of a recent fire, Mad Batter Bakery & Café will reopen. But, instead of returning to the campus of Western Carolina University in Cullowhee where it was located for 15 years, the beloved establishment will set up shop in downtown Sylva. “We’re totally excited about being in Sylva,” Mad Batter owner Jeannette Evans said. With the grand opening scheduled for midApril, the name of the new business will be Jeannette Evans changed to Mad Batter Food & Film. The restaurant will still offer food selections like those from the old location but also screen classic films. Come for dinner and movie, or come for just dinner or a movie. “We’ll be starting out with Mad Batter favorites, with an emphasis on popular items from the past menu,” Evans said. “We do hope — that because the new kitchen is larger — to expand the menu and have more variety.” The new name also symbolizes the next phase of Evans’ business. Following the Nov. 21 fire, which also burned Rolling Stone Burrito and Subway in the commercial strip at WCU, Evans knew she would reopen, but she didn’t know where.

Harrah’s Murphy casino selects manager Lumpy Lambert has been named general manager of Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino Hotel near Murphy. Lambert, an enrolled member of the Eastern Band of the Cherokee Nation, was most recently assistant general manager of casino operations for Harrah’s Cherokee Casino, where he began his gaming career in 1997 as a casino operations supervisor before quickly rising through the ranks. “Lumpy is widely respected by his peers

“We did look at other properties in Cullowhee, but the choices were limited,” she said. WCU announced on Feb. 5 that it had decided “to demolish the buildings damaged by the fire and notify all endowment fund tenants, including those not affected by the fire, that lease terms expiring in May will not be renewed, except on a month-to-month basis. In addition, after a competitive process determined by the university, the board will select a private developer to build the mixed-use facility with a goal of occupancy in August 2016. All structures currently located along the commercial strip will eventually be removed.” And with the new building on the WCU campus, Evans said she does have a “first right of refusal” when it is constructed. That means there may be hope for not only a second location of Mad Batter, but also a triumphant return to its original home in Cullowhee. “We actually look forward to opening up another location when there is a new building,” she said. “WCU has been really great to us throughout this process.” Until then, Evans said that beyond the new location in Sylva, WCU has also granted Mad Batter permission to have a food truck parked in the old location. That will start once Evans finds the ideal vehicle for her operation. “We’re actively looking into a food truck,” she said. “And as soon as we find the appropriate 12-foot step van, we’ll be in business.” and Tribal leaders, and has proven his continuous commitment to ensuring the success of the gaming business on behalf of the Eastern Band,” said Brooks Robinson, general manager of Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort. Building a new casino is nothing new to Lambert, who helped lead the Cherokee property through a six-year $650 million dollar expansion project. The $110 million dollar casino is expected to create more than 900 jobs on-site, inject up to $39 million dollars in wages into the surrounding area and be a significant economic development project for Cherokee County and its residents.

Business notes • Melanee Lester, general manager of Waynesville’s Mast General Store, has been honored as a 2013 Main Street Champion by the N.C. Department of Commerce, Office of Urban Development. Lester was selected by Downtown Waynesville Association for her contributions to the revitalization process.

• Duke Energy recently gave $1,200 to Southwestern Community College’s New Century Scholars program, a program that gives qualifying seventh-grades in SCC’s service area last-dollar tuition assistance at SCC so long as they fulfill program obligations throughout their middle- and highschool careers.

• Appalachian Antique Hardwoods of Waynesville was named “Best Of Houzz 2014” by Houzz, an internet source for home remodeling and design ideas and inspiration. Appalachian Antique Hardwoods sells antique, reclaimed and green building materials and furnishings to residential and commercial customers across the United States.

• Angel Medical Center has joined with other Mission Health System home health and hospice agencies to form a more integrated, efficient program. Clinical and administrative personnel will remain the same and will operate in the community under the name Angel Home Care and Hospice.

• The Greater Asheville Regional Airport Authority reported a 7 percent increase in passenger traffic for the 2013 calendar year, the third highest number of annual passengers reported in the past decade.

• The Gathering Table in Sylva recently celebrated its two-year anniversary, having served more than 10,000 free meals since opening in January 2012. The non-profit organization plans to start delivering hot soup and a full healthy meal as its new outreach program.

• The Evergreen Foundation has given $17,825 to the 30th District Partnership to help establish a Peer Supported Suicide and School Violence Prevention Program for middle school and high school students in the seven western counties of the 30th Judicial District. • Volunteers are available to help people with tax preparation and filing every Friday and Monday through April 11 at the Jackson County Senior Center and every Tuesday at the Jackson County Public Library in Sylva, unless closed for holidays. 828.586.2016. • Swain County Schools recently received $1,600 in grant money from the “Learning Links” grant program of the Community Foundation of Western North Carolina. The grants provide local teachers with funding for “hands-on” activities designed to make required coursework fun and relevant. • Western Carolina University is listed among the nation’s best providers of online bachelor’s degree programs in a collection of rankings released last month by U.S. News & World Report. Its online bachelor’s degree program in entrepreneurship also received a high national ranking in affordability and “Best Buy” designation from the distance education information clearinghouse • Western Carolina University will host the first of three annual diversity conferences for nursing educators, health-care professionals, secondary educators and community leaders on Friday, April 4. or 828.227.7397. • Robin C. Oliver, a marketing and branding executive with extensive advertising agency experience, has been appointed to lead Western Carolina University’s newly created marketing unit. • In an effort to raise awareness and funds for KIDS Place, Tamera Nielsen, year round resident of Franklin and the only Certified

Meet the candidates for Canton Town Manager March 1

Two prescription drug forums coming up in Haywood, Jackson

The Town of Canton Board of Aldermen will hold a Special Called Meeting on March 1 at 2 p.m. in the Canton Armory for the purpose to meet and greet the candidates for the town manager position. The public is invited to attend. For more information, call 828.648.2363 for more information.

• Learn more about what you can do to reduce prescription drug abuse in Jackson County at a luncheon presentation from Project Lazarus, a group dedicated to addressing prescription drug problems, from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 28, in Sylva. Project Lazarus CEO Fred Wells Branson

• WestCare recently honored 26 employees for their years of service on the Harris, Swain and Franklin campuses. The employees were recognized for milestones ranging from five to 30 years and collectively represented 345 years of service to WestCare. • Marian Garrett, BSN, RN, RRT recently accepted the role of Director of Critical Care Services at Harris Regional Hospital, overseeing the emergency department and the intensive care unit. • Mission Health Connect is a new electronic health information exchange platform at Mission Health in Asheville that allows health care information to be shared electronically between physicians, hospitals and other providers. • Southwestern Community College’s Nursing Club organized a food drive, which collected more than 1,400 boxed and canned food items for the Manna Packs for Kids program. The food will be packaged in to backpacksized bags for local students to take home on the weekends.

Horsemanship Adventure Weeks

If you child is interested in riding but has never been on a horse before we have a beginners program for them. If they are an experienced rider who wants to work on more advanced skills we have a program for them too. See you soon!

Early Bird Discounts Available Until March 15th

Mountain Dell Equestrian

• Dr. Nicholas Jernigan, a board-certified physician in pediatrics and internal medicine, has joined Western North Carolina Pediatric and Adolescent Care in Sylva. Dr. Jernigan provides care for patients with Down Syndrome, autism and cerebral palsy, including those who have aged out of pediatric care. 828.586.9642.

• Carolina West Sports Medicine, the official medical provider for Western Carolina University athletics, has relocated its physical therapy and sports medicine clinic at the university from the Ramsey Center to the new Health and Human Sciences Building.

Big Results...

Learn More & Register at:

• Therapists Kim Clayton and Thomas Burns with Harris Regional Hospital recently obtained the Doctorate of Physical Therapy, which is the highest-level degree available in the physical therapy and rehab field. • Meredith Curcio Whitfield, former special assistant for federal relations and research at Appalachian State University, has been named director of external relations at Western Carolina University.

will be the keynote speaker for the event, cohosted by Community Care of North Carolina and the Mountain Area Health Education Center. Held at the Jackson County Health Department. or 828.476.0330. • A program on prescription drug abuse problems in Haywood County will be held at 5:30 p.m. on March 9 at the New Beginning Baptist Church in Clyde. Waynesville Police Chief Bill Hollingsed and Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher will lead the discussion, which is titled “Drugs in our Midst.”

...small investment.

Smoky Mountain News

• The Evergreen Board of Directors has committed $40,000 to the Homelessness to Hope Community Project, aimed at expanding sup-

• The Evergreen Foundation has awarded the Clean Slate Coalition, a local housing program for women in transition, a seed grant of $17,390 to begin its own work enterprise for residents.

Chair Yoga teacher in Western North Carolina, is pledging 10 percent of all 2014 chair yoga class proceeds to KIDS Place.

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

• First United Methodist Church of Franklin has donated $1,000 to the Angel Medical Center Outpatient Cancer Care Fund.

port services to abused, troubled or at-risk youth. The money will help renovate a new location for Hawthorn Heights, an emergency shelter for adolescents.

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828.452.4251 15



Smoky Mountain News

Reasonable people can disagree on development ordinance


Our schools deserve better than this

To the Editor: Sixty-nine school boards across this state joined with the State Board of Education in challenging the constitutionality of the school voucher program passed by our Legislature, which initially takes $100 million out of public school systems and gives it to private schools. This is indefensible at a time when North Carolina ranks near the bottom in both per pupil spending and teacher pay. The Constitution requires funding for public schools, but there is no mandate to take state money and provide it to private schools. If our Legislature really had any confidence

course type developments. It is for a local family on a few acres who want to let a son or daughter have enough land for a home of their own. Their only choice is often to use the steeper land above the original homeplace. Typically they take advantage of a deal whereby they can get a doublewide with little or no money down if they own the land. These people often have difficulty coming up with the money to pay the permitting fees, the road builder, attorney, surveyor, etc. Adding the cost of hiring an engineer could literally break the deal. I am not proposing that we sacrifice safety or environmental impact for Guest Columnist these people. I am proposing that we make the MHDO threshold no higher than necessary to protect against a reasonable likelihood of landslide. Each landowner is ultimately responsible for the safety of their own home, and those under the regulatory threshold are still free to hire an engineer for their own peace of mind. One of the most emotional issues brought up at the public hearing was to allow building up to 35 feet above protected ridges, and narrowing the definition of protected ridges. There is no safety reason to oppose this change. I urge you to go online and look at some landslide hazard maps. They exist for Buncombe, Macon and other counties, with Jackson on the way (with the planning board’s urging). If you are familiar with how to read a topographic map, it will be obvious that some of the safest places are on the ridgetops. The ridgetops are less steep than the ridge sides. The ridgetops, or crests, are always less steep than the sides of the same ridges.  If a landowner is given the choice between building on top of the ridge or on the side of that same ridge, the site on top will be less steep, less damaging to the environment, and for buildings under 35 feet, less visible from the valley below. It’s probably time for a deep breath or two. I told you this would be difficult. I have been fortunate in the 20 years that I have been a land surveyor here in Jackson County. I have met a lot of great people and seen a lot of beautiful places that very few other people get to see. I have also seen a lot of fancy homes built on ridge tops. I usually walk on to the back deck and check out the view. Then I drive off, and look for the house from the valley below. They tend to be hard to find. I have been looking for years, and it is my observation that most of the homes on high ridge tops can not be seen from the valley below. The most visible houses are on the sides of steep ridges, not the tops. 

Clark Lipkin

am the vice chairman of the Jackson County Planning Board. I presided over the public meeting to discuss the proposed revisions to the Mountain and Hillside Development Ordinance (MHDO) at last week’s Jackson County Planning Board meeting. I have some thoughts that I think are important to share with the public about that meeting, and about the proposed revisions. These thoughts are my own, and I do not speak for the planning board as a whole, or any other member of the board. I think the biggest lesson I take from my experience on the board is how difficult it is to understand another person’s viewpoint. I saw a lot of people struggling with it at the public meeting. Many people who spoke failed to understand that two rational, honest people can have entirely different opinions about what’s best for Jackson County. Mature people know this, and then do two things: explain their position, and listen and attempt to understand what the “other side” has to say. People who can’t do this hurl threats and accusations of greed, corruption and ignorance at people whose opinions differ from their own. I saw both kinds of people that night. Unfortunately, nobody spoke in support of the changes the board has proposed, so for those with an open mind, here goes. First let me address the safety issue as it relates to changing the threshold of applicability for the MHDO. The planning board is proposing changing that threshold from land with an average slope of 30 percent to 35 percent (that’s percent slope, not degrees). Plenty of folks questioned the science, or lack of it, on this issue, and it’s a good question. In June of last year a team of geologists called Appalachian Landslide Consultants presented a report it had developed on landslides in Western North Carolina. They studied the relationship between 471 slides and the original slope of the land on which they occurred.  I quote from that report: “It is interesting to note that very few landslides (modified or unmodified) occurred on slopes less than 20 degrees (36.4 percent).” Four, to be precise. Further, the majority of all modified slope failures occurred on slopes that had been modified well beyond the limits proposed by the planning board. The board also added benching requirements, as well as setbacks to make cuts more than 20-feet high safer. Now, four slope failures is still too many, especially for the four affected landowners. But how low should we set the threshold? Note that, with enough rain and the wrong soil, there is no slope flat enough to guarantee safety. So we have to draw the line somewhere. The cost of dealing with the regulations and hiring a professional engineer to certify safety must be considered. I am a professional land surveyor, and the most common type of subdivision of land that I do is not for big, gated golf

in our public schools, and really cared about the low-income students which this legislation claims to help, it would follow the constitutional mandate to provide through taxation or otherwise a general and uniform system of free public schools, instead of siphoning off desperately needed funds to private schools through things like this voucher system. My children and grandchildren all graduated from Haywood County Schools. I know they had the opportunity for the best education they could have gotten anywhere. Now, I have great-grandchildren in the schools here, and I want the same opportunities for them.   If our Legislators continue to take funding away, continue to disparage and discourage our teachers, while piling more and more responsibilities on them, I worry that these

We had a building boom that recently ended, or perhaps paused, with no ridgetop restrictions. So where are the ugly houses that mar the view of the ridges? I can give examples of ridge tops where you can’t see the houses, like up Big Ridge, or Tower Road where there are dozens of houses right near the Eastern Continental Divide. For all the worry, precious few actual examples of problem ridges outside of Boone have been offered. The Plott Balsams are probably the most visible high ridges in the northern half of the county. Their heights are mostly either government owned or in conservation easement. The planning board proposes keeping the provisio requiring 50 percent screening with natural vegetation. If you know of a ridgetop in Jackson County that meets the criteria of the MHDO but that has ugly homes spoiling the view from the valley below, or that doesn’t but would be ruined if it did, please let the planning board know about it. A valid question that was not asked at the public hearing was under what circumstances should rights that have traditionally been held by landowners of this county be taken away? In my humble opinion at least three criteria should be met. First, we should be certain that the regulation will have the desired effect. I have explained that I do not believe the current ridge provision does. Second, it should benefit the county as a whole. I do not claim to know enough about the economics of the home building trades versus the rest of the tourism industry, or the popular consensus, to decide that question. And third, it should happen only if there is no other reasonable option available. Let me now propose another option. The county could identify the ridges most important to the aesthetic sensibilities of residents and the tourism industry that are not already owned by the U.S. Forest Service. The county could then purchase conservation easements on those properties. One major benefit this would have over the current ridge law is that the whole of the visible ridge could be protected, not just the top 50 feet or so. It would also be much more fair to the owners of those properties. For six years now, Jackson County has had this MHDO, along with the Subdivision Ordinance, that the environmental community loves so well. We have had an erosion control ordinance for much longer. The county recently enacted, with recommendation from this board, an ordinance regulating impervious surfaces throughout the county, not just steep land. And yet the Tuckasegee runs brown all too often. I will grant that the numbers on the impervious surface limits should be revisited. But do not expect this ordinance, whether the revisions are adopted or not, to end this problem. Clark Lipkin lives in Tuckasegee.

LOOKING FOR OPINIONS The Smoky Mountain News encourages readers to express their opinions. All viewpoints are welcome. Send to or mail to PO Box 629, Waynesville, NC, 28786. children may not have those same opportunities. Taking teacher tenure away, forcing the school systems to reward 25 percent of its teachers with a small bonus and a four-year contract, leaving the rest of our good teachers out in the cold, is the stupidest move I have ever seen. It’s time to stand up against these

atrocities. Our schools and our children deserve more. Juanita Dixon Canton

Everyone wants to protect the mountains To the Editor: Everyone in Jackson County needs to know there was an overflow crowd at the public hearing on steep slope issues on Feb. 20. During the three-hour hearing, everyone who spoke — without exception — wanted to protect the mountains. Everyone from a young college man to an

old man with a cane; everyone from scientists to artists; everyone from a real estate person and a builder to environmentalists; everyone from old-timers to newcomers came to voice opposition to the planning board’s desire to slash the current steep slope regulations. There were photos, facts and statistics, a jug of river water, and heartfelt pleas including one expressed in an original song. Everyone’s presentation was followed by applause. Now, everyone on the planning board for the Jackson County Board of Commissioners needs to heed the pleas and not slash the current steep slope regulations. Instead of slashing the current regulations, why not encourage and provide incentives for builders who work with the environment not against it? Mary Joyce Sylva

Foundation should aid Good Samaritan Clinic

Just look at what the Tea Party is doing

To the Editor: We repeat our mistakes because we never seem to learn the lessons of history and, in our case, we have an arrogant group of liberal elites who are attempting to do away with not only our way of life but establish a quasidictatorship run by a liberal aristocracy. President Obama bypassing Congress by using executive orders is similar to methods used by past dictatorships. The people in Congress we elected to represent us no longer have a voice. We’ve seen it in dozens of countries from Nazi Germany to Venezuela. The elite liberal aristocracy only thinks they know what’s best for us, they look down on the working class and prefer them to stay in their place by making them dependent on a big government. In fact, liberals have little understanding of how things work in life, many never having held a real job. Several black leaders have commented recently that the aristocratic liberal class has done almost as much damage to the black people as did slavery. The result is a liberal aristocratic hierarchy with everyone subject to their views. But all liberal thinking goes against our knowledge of science, and I suspect at least some of them are titillated by lowering our sexual moral codes to the level of Hollywood. What brought the lack of historical continuity to my attention was a short clip I watched on one of the late night shows. Someone was interviewing people on the street and asked how they felt about the death of FDR last Monday? All replied that FDR was a great loss and sorry to hear he died. They were then asked which was FDR’s most important accomplishment, the Monroe Doctrine or the Louisiana Purchase? Dear reader, I hope you know the answers to these questions and if you don’t, we’re all in a whole heap of trouble because we will repeat the same mistakes over and over. Bob Wilson Franklin

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Smoky Mountain News

To the Editor: The letter saying the Tea Party is making changes is correct, but let’s look at the changes the Tea Party legislators have made. The legislators supported by the Tea Party have shifted taxes from the rich to the middle class, have cut education funding, and violated constitutional principles. The tax “cuts” that the legislators enacted did cut income taxes for all, but primarily for the rich. The tax cuts for middle class persons making under $80,000 amount to a few dollars as compared to thousands for those making a million. However, they also increased our taxes by including sales taxes on labor and services. You will now pay more taxes to get your car serviced or to buy a movie ticket. The hidden sales tax increase will mean we in the middle class will actually

We are doomed to repeat history

The Denture


Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

To the Editor: The Haywood Regional Hospital Foundation need look no further than The Good Samaritan Clinic. The support of the foundation would be a lifesaver for our wonderful yet financially strapped clinic. Dr. Gruner, Nurse Flo and a dedicated staff work so hard to help so many. Haywood County has many residents like myself who have no insurance and little money to get by on. We depend on this small clinic for the critical medical services it can provide. Just imagine what funding from H.R.H.F. could do. Dr. Gruner is a true angel, but we need another doctor. It is my opinion, along with many others, that this is the obvious choice for the foundation to turn their focus to. The need is so great, let’s get this ball rolling. Mylan Sessions Clyde

pay more tax than before. The Tea Party legislators say they budgeted more general funds for education than before. So why has every school district had to fire teachers and teacher aids? The answers are a follows. First, the legislature did not replace all the federal funding that ran out. Second, it eliminated a tax that directly funded education. The fact is that we now spend less per student than ever before. A Tea Party legislator proposed a state religion. This is against both the U.S. and state constitutions. Apparently some Tea Party legislators do not really understand the Constitution. Don’t be fooled by what the Tea Party members say or even believe. Look at what the legislators they have helped put into office are doing. Norman Hoffman Waynesville







Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

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Smoky Mountain News

ASHEVILLE: 60 Biltmore Ave. 252.4426 & 88 Charlotte St. 254.4289

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tasteTHEmountains Taste the Mountains is an ever-evolving paid section of places to dine in Western North Carolina. If you would like to be included in the listing please contact our advertising department at 828.452.4251 AMMONS DRIVE-IN RESTAURANT & DAIRY BAR 1451 Dellwwod Rd., Waynesville. 828.926.0734. Open 7 days a week 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Celebrating over 25 years. Enjoy world famous hot dogs as well as burgers, seafood, hushpuppies, hot wings and chicken. Be sure to save room for dessert. The cobbler, pie and cake selections are sure to satisfy any sweet tooth. BLUE ROOSTER SOUTHERN GRILL 207 Paragon Parkway, Clyde, Lakeside Plaza at the old Wal-Mart. 828.456.1997. Open Monday through Friday. Friendly and fun family atmosphere. Local, handmade Southern cuisine. Fresh-cut salads; slow-simmered soups; flame grilled burgers and steaks, and homemade signature desserts. Blue-plates and local fresh vegetables daily. Brown bagging is permitted. Private parties, catering, and take-out available. Call-ahead seating available. BOGART’S 35 East Main St., Sylva. 828.586.6532. Sunday through Thursday 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.; Friday and Saturday 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. Serving classic American food and drink in a casual environment. Daily lunch and dinner specials. Children’s menu available. Call for catering quotes. Private room available for large parties. Accepts MC/Visa, Discover and American Express. BOURBON BARREL BEEF & ALE 454 Hazelwood Ave., Waynesville, 828.452.9191. Dinner nightly from 4 p.m. Closed on Sunday. We specialize in hand-cut, all natural steaks, fresh fish, and other classic American comfort foods that are made using only the finest local and sustainable ingredients available. We also feature a great selection of craft beers from local artisan brewers, and of course an extensive selection of small batch bourbons and whiskey. The Barrel is a friendly and casual neighborhood dining experience where our guests enjoy a great meal without breaking the bank. BREAKING BREAD CAFÉ 6147 Hwy 276 S. Bethel (at the Mobil Gas Station) 828.648.3838 Monday through Friday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. (takeout only 5 to 6 p.m.) Closed Saturday and Sunday. Serving Mediterranean style foods; join us for weekly specials. We roast our own ham, turkey and roast beef just like you get on Thanksgiving to use in our sandwiches. Try our chicken, tuna, egg and pasta salads made with gluten free mayo. Enjoy our variety of baked goods made daily: muffins, donuts, cinnamon buns and desserts. BRYSON CITY BAKERY AND PASTRY SHOPPE 191 Everett St., Bryson City. 828.488.5390 Offering a full line of fresh baked goods like Grandma used to make. Large variety to choose from including cakes, pies, donuts, breads, cinn-buns and much more. Also serv-

ing Hershey Ice Cream. Open seven days a week, 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. CATALOOCHEE RANCH 119 Ranch Dr., Maggie Valley. 828.926.1401. Mile-high mountaintop dining with a spectacular view. Join us for plentiful buffet-style dinners on Fridays and Saturdays, and long winter holiday weekends. Dinner is served from 6:00 to 7:30 p.m. in winter and includes pot roast, Virginia ham or herb-baked chicken, complemented with an assortment of seasonal vegetables, homemade breads, jellies and desserts. We also offer a fine selection of wine and beer. Lunch is served on the same days from 12 to 2 p.m. CHEF’S TABLE 30 Church St., Waynesville. 828.452.6210. From 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday dinner starting at 5 p.m. “Best of” Award of Excellence from Wine Spectator Magazine. Set in a distinguished atmosphere with an exceptional menu. Extensive selection of wine and beer. Reservations honored. CITY BAKERY 18 N. Main St. Waynesville 828.452.3881. Winter hours: Sunday-Thursday 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Friday & Saturday 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Join us in our historic location for scratch made soups and daily specials. Breakfast is made to order daily: Gourmet cheddar & scallion biscuits served with bacon, sausage and eggs; smoked trout bagel plate; quiche and fresh fruit parfait. We bake a wide variety of breads daily, specializing in traditional french breads. All of our breads are hand shaped. Lunch: Fresh salads, panini sandwiches. Enjoy outdoor dinning on the deck. Private room available for meetings. CITY LIGHTS CAFE Spring Street in downtown Sylva. 828.587.2233. Open Monday-Saturday 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tasty, healthy and quick. Breakfast, lunch, dinner, espresso, beer and wine. Come taste the savory and sweet crepes, grilled paninis, fresh, organic salads, soups and more. Outside patio seating. Free Wi-Fi, pet-friendly. Live music and lots of events. Check the web calendar at BRYSON CITY CORK & BEAN A MOUNTAIN SOCIAL HOUSE 16 Everett St.,Bryson City. 828.488.1934. Open Monday-Friday 8 a.m. to 9 p.m., Saturday and Sunday brunch 9 a.m. to 3p.m., Full Menu 3 to 9 p.m. Serving fresh and delicious weekday morning lite fare, lunch, dinner, and brunch. Freshly prepared menu offerings range from house-made soups & salads, lite fare & tapas, crepes, specialty sandwiches and burgers. Be sure not to miss the bold flavors and creative combinations that make up the daily Chef Supper Specials starting at 5pm every day. Followed by a tempting selection of desserts prepared daily by our chefs and other local bakers. Enjoy craft beers on tap, as well as our full bar and eclectic wine list. CORK & CLEAVER 176 Country Club Drive, Waynesville. 828.456.7179. Reservations recommended. 4:30-9 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Tucked away inside Waynesville Inn, Cork & Cleaver has an approachable menu designed around locally sourced, sustainable, farm-to-table ingredients. Executive Chef Corey Green prepares innovative and unique Southern fare

from local, organic vegetables grown in Western North Carolina. Full bar and wine cellar. COUNTRY VITTLES: FAMILY STYLE RESTAURANT 3589 Soco Rd, Maggie Valley. 828.926.1820 Open Daily 7 a.m. to 8:30 p.m., closed Tuesday. Family Style at Country Vittles is not a buffet. Instead our waitresses will bring your food piping hot from the kitchen right to your table and as many refills as you want. So if you have a big appetite, but sure to ask your waitress about our family style service. FRANKIE’S ITALIAN TRATTORIA 1037 Soco Rd. Maggie Valley. 828.926.6216 11:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. Tuesday-Saturday. Father and son team Frank and Louis Perrone cook up dinners steeped in Italian tradition. With recipies passed down from generations gone by, the Perrones have brought a bit of Italy to Maggie Valley. FRYDAY’S & SUNDAES 24 & 26 Fry St., Bryson City (Next To The Train Depot). 828.488.5379. Frydays is open; but closed on Wednesdays. Sundaes is open 7 days a week. Fryday’s is known for its Traditional English Beer Battered Fish & Chips, but also has burgers, deep fried dogs, gyro, shrimp, bangers, Chip Butty, chicken, sandwiches & a great kids menu. Price friendly, $3-$10, Everything available to go or call ahead takeout. Sundaes has 24 rotating flavors of Hershey's Ice Cream making them into floats, splits, sundaes, shakes. Private seating inside & out for both locations right across from the train station & pet friendly. FROGS LEAP PUBLIC HOUSE 44 Church St. Downtown Waynesville 828.456.1930 Serving lunch 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday; Dinner 5 to 9 p.m. Tuesday through Thursday. 5 to 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Closed Sunday and Monday. Frogs Leap is a farm to table restaurant focused on local, sustainable, natural and organic products prepared in modern regional dishes. Seasonal menu focuses on Southern comfort foods with upscale flavors. GUADALUPE CAFÉ 606 W. Main Street, Sylva. 828.586.9877. Open 7 days a week at 5 p.m. Located in the historic Hooper’s Drugstore, Guadalupe Café is a chef-owned and operated restaurant serving Caribbean inspired fare complimented by a quirky selection of wines and microbrews. Supporting local farmers of organic produce, livestock, hand-crafted cheese, and using sustainably harvested seafood. HERREN HOUSE 94 East St., Waynesville 828.452.7837. Lunch: Wednesday - Saturday 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sunday Brunch 11 a. m. to 2 p.m. Enjoy fresh local products, created daily. Join us in our beautiful patio garden. We are your local neighborhood host for special events: business party’s, luncheons, weddings, showers and more. Private parties & catering are available 7 days a week by reservation only. J. ARTHUR’S RESTAURANT AT MAGGIE VALLEY U.S. 19 in Maggie Valley. 828.926.1817. Lunch Sunday noon to 2:30 p.m., dinner nightly starting at 4:30 p.m. World-famous prime rib, steaks, fresh seafood, gorgonzola cheese and salads. All ABC permits and open year-round. Children always welcome.


tasteTHEmountains Take-out menu. Excellent service and hospitality. Reservations appreciated. JUKEBOX JUNCTION U.S. 276 and N.C. 110 intersection, Bethel. 828.648.4193. 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Serving breakfast, lunch, nd dinner. The restaurant has a 1950s & 60s theme decorated with memorabilia from that era. LOS AMIGOS 366 Russ Ave. in the Bi-Lo Plaza. 828.456.7870. Open from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. for lunch and 5 to 10 p.m. for dinner Monday through Friday and 11:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Enjoy the lunch prices Monday through Sunday, also enjoy our outdoor patio. LUCIO'S RESTAURANT 313 Highlands Road, Franklin. 828.369.6670. Serving Macon County since 1984. Closed Sunday, Monday, Tuesday. Lunch Wednesday-Friday 11:30 a.m. until.Dinner Wednesday-Saturday 5 p.m. until. Owned and operated by Tanya and Dorothy Gamboni. Serving authentic Italian and continental cuisine including appetizers, pastas, poultry, veal, seafood, steaks and homemade deserts. Selection of wine and beer. Lunch and Dinner menus. Wednesday and Thursday nights only. 1 appetizer and 2 selected entrées with unlimited salad and Lucio’s famous garlic rolls for $24.95. Winter Special: half-off house wines, Friday and Saturday only.

MAGGIE VALLEY CLUB 1819 Country Club Dr., Maggie Valley. 828.926.1616. Open daily for lunch and dinner. Fine and casual fireside dining in welcoming atmosphere. Full bar. Reservations accepted. MOONSHINE GRILL 2550 Soco Road, Maggie Valley loacted in the Smoky Falls Lodge. 828.926.7440.

Bridget’s Bistro

Herren House

Love The Locals

PASQUALE’S 1863 South Main Street, Waynesville. Off exit 98, 828.454.5002. Open for lunch and dinner seven days a week. Classic Italian dishes, exceptional steaks and seafood (available in full and lighter sizes), thin crust pizza, homemade soups, salads hand tossed at your table. Fine wine and beer selection. Casual atmosphere, dine indoor, outside on the patio or at the bar. Reservations appreciated. PASQUALINO’S ITALIAN RESTAURANT 25 Everett Street, Bryson City. 828.488.9555. Open for lunch and dinner everyday 11:30 a.m.-late. A taste of Italy in beautiful Bryson City. Exceptional pasta, pizza, homemade soups, salads. Fine wine, mixed drinks and beer selection. Casual atmosphere, reservations appreciated. PATIO BISTRO 30 Church Street, Waynesville. 828.454.0070. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday. Breakfast bagels and sandwiches, gourmet coffee, deli sandwiches for lunch with homemade soups, quiches, and desserts. Wide selection of wine and beer. Outdoor and indoor dining.



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SPEEDY’S PIZZA 285 Main Street, Sylva. 828.586.3800. Open seven days a week. Monday-Friday 11 a.m.-10 p.m., Saturday 3 p.m.-11 p.m., Sunday 4 p.m.-10 p.m. Family-owned for 30 years. Serving hand-tossed pizza made to order, pasta, subs, gourmet salads, calzones and seafood. Also serving excellent prime rib on Thursdays. Dine in or take out available. Located across from the Fire Station.

Burgers to Salads Southern Favorites & Classics -Local beers now on draft-

Live Music on the Patio Tues.-Fri.

TAP ROOM SPORTS BAR & GRILL 176 Country Club Dr. Waynesville 828.456.5988. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week. Enjoy soups, sandwiches, salads and hearty appetizers along with a full bar menu in our casual, smoke-free neighborhood grill.

Call to see who’s playing.

117 Main Street, Canton NC 828.492.0618 • Serving Lunch & Dinner

MON.-THURS. 11 A.M.-9 P.M. • FRI. & SAT. 11 A.M.-10 P.M. SUNDAY BRUNCH 11 A.M. TO 2:30 P.M. 229-45

THE WINE BAR 20 Church Street, downtown Waynesville. 828.452.6000. Underground cellar for wine and beer, served by the glass all day. Cheese and tapas served Wednesday through Saturday 4 p.m.-9 p.m. or later. Also on facebook and twitter. VITO’S PIZZA 607 Highlands Rd., Franklin. 828.369.9890. Established here in in 1998. Come to Franklin and enjoy our laid back place, a place you can sit back, relax and enjoy our 62” HDTV. Our Pizza dough, sauce, meatballs, and sausage are all made from scratch by Vito. The recipes have been in the family for 50 years (don't ask for the recipes cuz’ you won't get it!) Each Pizza is hand tossed and made with TLC. You're welcome to watch your pizza being created.



Buy One Brunch or Lunch, Get a Second One

Dylan Riddle

SOUL INFUSION TEA HOUSE & BISTRO 628 E. Main St. (between Sylva Tire & UPS). 828.586.1717. Tuesday-Friday 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; Saturday noon -until. Scrumptious, natural, fresh soups, salads, sandwiches, wraps and desserts. 60+ teas served hot or cold, black, chai, herbal. Seasonal and rotating draft beers, good selection of wine. Home-Grown Music Network Venue with live music most weekends. Pet friendly and kid ready.




Open for Sunday Brunch 11-2 • Lunch 11:30-2 Wed.-Fri.

NEWFOUND LODGE RESTAURANT 1303 Tsali Blvd, Cherokee (Located on 441 North at entrance to GSMNP). 828.497.4590. Open 7 a.m. daily. Established in 1946 and serving breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week. Family style dining for adults and children.




Smoky Mountain News


at the

MOUNTAIN PERKS ESPRESSO BAR & CAFÉ 9 Depot St., Bryson City. 828.488.9561. Open Monday through Thursday, 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Friday 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.; Saturday 8 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. With music at the Depot. Sunday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Life is too short for bad coffee. We feature wonderful breakfast and lunch selections. Bagels, wraps, soups, sandwiches, salads and quiche with a variety of specialty coffees, teas and smoothies. Various desserts.

RENDEZVOUS RESTAURANT AND BAR Maggie Valley Inn and Conference Center 828.926.0201 Bar open Monday thru Saturday; dining room open Tuesday thru Saturday at 5 p.m. Full service restaurant serving steaks, prime rib, seafood and dinner specials.

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

MAD BATTER BAKERY & CAFÉ Located on the WCU Campus in Cullowhee. 828.293.3096. Open Monday-Thursday 7:30 a.m. to 8 p.m., Friday 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday and Sunday 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Earth-friendly foods at people-friendly prices. Daily specials, wraps, salads, pastries, breads, soups and more. Unique fare, friendly service, casual atmosphere and wireless Internet. Organic ingredients, local produce, gourmet fair trade and organic coffees.

Open Thursday through Saturday, 4:30 to 9 p.m. Cooking up mouth-watering, wood-fired Angus steaks, prime rib and scrumptious fresh seafood dishes. The wood-fired grill gives amazing flavor to every meal that comes off of it. Enjoy creative dishes made using moonshine. Stop by and simmer for a while and soak up the atmosphere. The best kept secret in Maggie Valley.

Deli & So Much More 6147 Hwy 276 S. • Bethel (at the Mobil Gas Station) • 828.648.3838 Mon.-Fri. 8-5 • Closed: Sat. & Sun.




Smoky Mountain News

and applying what they’ve learned and seeing what the results are. It’s about gathering information and assimilating it into what’s appropriate for their specific design.” Rogers assesses the situation with John, offering just enough advice to push the teenager towards the correct strategy in proceeding with his project without giving away the answer. It’s about giving the students the tools to succeed, but also letting them have the freedom in grasping responsibility v within their own creativity. “Because my classroom structure is a little more free than others, the students are more self-motivated and self-determined than in a lot cases where information is just handed over and they’re expected to hand it back,” Rogers said.

Through a grant from the N.C. Arts Council, professional artist and Jackson County resident William Rogers recently held a two-week course on making design with copper at Smokey Mountain Elementary School in Whittier. Garret K. Woodward photo


From the studio to the classroom

BY GARRET K. WOODWARD STAFF WRITER The loud pounding echoed from the end of the empty corridor. Crossing the threshold of the last classroom on the left at Smokey Mountain Elementary School in Whittier, one could see — and hear — that the source of the sound came from the feverish hands of students during their afternoon art class. Like an army of woodpeckers, the pupils each hammered away at copper sheet metal in an effort to make their designs a physical reality. “It’s very unique, and I love that you can do anything,” said seventh-grader Annie Durant. “It’s takes a little while, but I like how it turns out. It’s pretty important that people get to do something like this because it doesn’t happen everyday.” At the center of the classroom is metalsmith and jack-of-all-trades artisan William Rogers, who zooms around the desks to answer any question and assist William Rogers with any problem. Brought into the classroom through an “Arts in Education” grant from the North Carolina Arts Council, Rogers is making the most out of the twoweek course at the school. “My goal is to be aware of what my students are doing, thinking and trying to do, and to help them,” the 58-year-old smiled. “Teachers have to read their students, and if they can read their students, then can teach them. If you’re not responding to the needs of your students, you’re not really teaching them.”


Wandering the classroom, student designs placed on the copper range from a basketball to cancer ribbon, Celtic knot to sandcastles — all representing something from their culture and heritage. That idea for incorporating tradition and creativity was put forth by Jenniffer Dall, an art teacher at Smokey Mountain.

“This is an opportunity for students to collaborate in a real piece of artwork that will be permanently displayed in the school,” she said. “Each student made a design based on their personal culture and heritage. We’re taking our Appalachian culture and making a [copper] quilt with the squares.” The quilt will eventually be on display in the school’s lobby. For Dall, being able to bring a professional artist into her classroom is something not only special to her, but also much needed in bringing together community, art and education. “I think it’s neat for the students to see that you can be a professional artist in this day and age,” she said. “And that they see they aren’t just fairy book people that magically create illustrations in a book — they’re real people with real personalities.” At a nearby table, eighth-grader John Dall, Jenniffer’s son, is hammering away at his design. He picks up certain tools to make indentations, others to make specific shapes and lines, while an unrelenting grin slides across his face. “I’m glad our school is able to bring in an artist to us interesting things,” the 13-year-old said. “I’ve always enjoyed metal working, and we’ve seen some pretty cool stuff. For one thing, this expands the range of knowledge you get, and it also makes school more enjoyable.” And if John crosses paths with an issue, Rogers is never too far away to tap for guidance. “Being excited about learning is great, and they’re gathering information,” Rogers said. “They aren’t just relying on the teachers giving them information. They’re taking the materials

Rogers grew up in East Tennessee. Even as a child, he was fascinated with creating something out of nothing. Through encouraging art classes in high school, he pursued a degree in v art education at Middle Tennessee State University. And since then, Rogers had led a lifelong pursuit of understanding ancient art forms, where he’s able to study the past and find the best way of translating those techniques into modern times through education. “I do this as not an institution, but as a traveling artist,” he said. This is Rogers fourth in-school residency. He did a workshop with Tuscola High School students last year to create a 12-foot tall sculpture made of steel and copper and is permanently installed in the school garden. He has taught the Cherokee ancestral art of hammered copper in Cherokee High School, where two of his sculptures have been installed. As a traveling art instructor, he has brought his workshops to Qualla Arts and Crafts Mutual, HandMade in America, John C. Campbell Folk School and The Bascom. In addition, he was involved in the development and construction of the blacksmithing studios at the Jackson County Green Energy Park. Rogers has resided in Cullowhee for the last decade, always honing his skills in his studio and out in the world, sharing his knowledge and passion with others. His creativity is about constantly learning something new, always striving to discover something else about you as an individual and as an artist. “If you’re not learning, you’re not doing much. If you’re not trying something new, you’re not doing anything,” he said. “If you’re doing the same thing over and over again, well, we have robots for that now.”


With the school dismissal bell only a few minutes away, the students are working hard at getting as much of their design done as possible. Following the two-week course with Rogers, j Dall will spend some time with her classes interpreting what they’ve learned and being able to plug it into the rest of their curriculum and personal lives. y “They don’t want to leave, you have to make them leave,” Dall chuckled. “I’ve smiled a lot [during this course]. For the first couple of days, the students whine that they can’t do the project, but then there’s that ‘ah ha’ moment and they get it. They’re being able to persevere. If they stick it, they’ll adapt to it.” “It’s about learning and creating,” Rogers added. “And that’s becoming more and more important to our culture today.”

“This is an opportunity for students to collaborate in a real piece of artwork that will be permanently displayed in the school. Each student made a design based on their personal culture and heritage. We’re taking our Appalachian culture and making a [copper] quilt with the squares.” — Jenniffer Dall, art teacher

Wedding Show



Smoky Mountain News: When you pick up your guitar, where do you go? Dylan Riddle: I guess when I start to play, I just let my fingers take over, and my mind comes in second. If I’m trying to write a new tune, I’ll just sit and play the first thing that comes out of me, and then go back and refine the rhythm. I don’t necessarily think to myself, “Lets write a sad song” or “Let’s write something that will make people dance.” I just let the music flow, and if I like it, I’ll stick with it.


MARCH 22, 2014 10 A.M.-3 P.M. FOR OUR FIRST



Dylan Riddle. Donated photo

HOT PICKS 1 2 3 4 5


The Carolina Chocolate Drops will perform at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University.

The Smoky Mountain Rollergirls Roller Derby Team will open their 2014 season at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at the Swain County Recreation Center in Bryson City.

“An Evening with Gloria Steinem” will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 6, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western North Carolina. Brushfire Stankgrass will perform at 9 p.m. Feb. 28 at the Water’n Hole Bar and Grill in Waynesville.

The Harlem Ambassadors will play a basketball game against the Franklin Dribblers at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, at Franklin High School.



DR: I’m a simple person. I come from a small town, front pew family. In life, I’ve had my ups and downs, heartbreaks, wild nights, hard days at work, just about everything a country song embodies. Country, real country, is about real life, it’s about my life, and that’s why I love it. SMN: What do you think when folks say “real country music” doesn’t exist anymore? DR: What they put on radio right now is, in my opinion, not country music. I hope I don’t ruffle any feathers, but the genre has fallen so far in the past year that I can hardly bring myself to listen to it. With that said,


In the U.S., a disease is considered rare if it is believed to affect fewer than 200,000 Americans. There are approximately 6,800 such diseases, according to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Rare diseases affect nearly 30 million Americans or nearly 1 in 10 people.

Smoky Mountain News

SMN: You recently recorded your debut in Nashville. DR: I was blessed with the opportunity to link up with some Nashville legends at The Sound Emporium. Names like Tim Smith, Brent Mason and Paul Franklin, all of whom are absolutely the top guys in their profession. The experience was completely humbling. I kept thinking to myself, “Why are these guys playing my simple little songs?” Better yet, “Why are they complimenting them?” or “I hope to God the right people hear this, for the sake of country music.” That one really made me smile.

SMN: What is it about country music that appeals to you?

Sample food, view wedding videos, compare styles of photographers, florists, cake designers, wedding gowns, tuxedos, caterers and DJs. Also explore honeymoon destinations and check out cosmetics and jewelry.

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

t was his voice that caught my ear. Turning towards the stage at the Water’n Hole in Waynesville, I was immediately transfixed on the bullfrog-deep vocals echoing from the microphone. Who is that voice? A little bit country, 22-yearold Dylan Riddle is a workhorse with a clear vision — to turn his passion into a bountiful career. A student at Western Carolina University, Riddle spends his free time refining his sound and playing any bars, restaurants and venues that will take a listen around Southern Appalachia. With graduation on the horizon, Riddle is at a pivotal crossroads in his life. After a recent recording session in Nashville, he’s releasing his debut album. And with that next step comes the notion of “What now?” Take to the road with guitar case in hand, or go down a well-worn path of putting your dreams up on the shelf and sitting down in an office? It’s a question as old as time itself, with Riddle pushing a hard line towards the first option.

arts & entertainment

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arts & entertainment


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On the wall

Real time painting demo at Gallery 86 Artist Melissa Enloe Walter will hold a painting demonstration from 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at Gallery 86, 86 N. Main St., in Waynesville. Walker is one of eight artists participating in the real time demonstrations as part of, “Local Flavors,” an exhibition that runs through March 29 at Gallery 86 at the Haywood County Arts Council. The exhibition includes 30 local artists of different mediums whose work is on display during the exhibition. The artists include: Mark Bettis (oil), Carol Blackwell (3-D assemblage), Joyce Brunsvold (quilt art), Ron Brunsvold (photography), Kristalyn Bunyan (mono print), Craig Burgwardt (oil), Crystal Allen Coates (ceramics), Wendy Cordwell (collage), Nick DePaolo (water color), Christine Dougherty (oil), John Gernandt (furniture), Sylvia Hirschegger (oil), Patrice Kennedy-Murillo (mixed media), Becki Kollat (art books), Steven Lange (mixed media), Melli Mae Lonnemann (clay), Bob Luciene (wood), Betina Morgan (acrylic), Cory Plott (ceramics), Vicky Pinney (cold wax), Bobbie Polizzi (assemblage), Barbara Sammons (photography), t.e. siewert (encaustic), Mark Schieferstein (metal), Jere Smith (woodwork), Terry Thompson (jewelry),

Painter Melissa Enloe Walter will host a demonstration on March 1 at Gallery 86 in Waynesville.

Tadashi Torii (glass), Corina Pia Torii (visual artist), Melissa Enloe Walter (acrylic painting on gold and silver leaf ) and Constance Williams (encaustic). Free. or

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

Oriental brush painting demo in Swain


Multimedia artist Haidee Wilson of Webster will demonstrate Oriental brush painting techniques at 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, at Swain County Center for the Arts in Bryson City. The demonstration will be an informal introduction to the ancient art form that is still being practiced today. Wilson will introduce the attendees to the four key components of Oriental brush painting: paper, brush, ink and the ink stone. Painting bamboo and one Chinese character in a minimum number of strokes will be the main focus, with an opportunity for those in attendance to try the techniques in some hands-on experiments. Handouts of references will also be available. Wilson is self-taught and has painted in a variety of media including charcoal and pencil sketches with watercolor added, mixed media with acrylics, and pastels and oils on canvas. The event is sponsored by the North Carolina Arts Council, Swain County Center for the Arts and Swain County Schools, The program received support from the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the department of Cultural Resources. Free. 828.488.7843 or or

THE PLACE, CONTINUED FROM 21 real country is far from dead. Folks should listen to Chris Knight, Pat Green, or Ryan Bingham, and then tell me that real country doesn’t exist. SMN: When you’re onstage, in the moment, where do you go in your mind? DR: I always remind myself, as well as the musicians I’m playing with of one thing, “You’re working.” I’m first and foremost on that stage to entertain people. Whether it’s a crowded bar filled to the brim with college kids sloshing beer on your sound system, a

backstreet dive with bearded bikers or a hometown restaurant filled with friends and family, my job is to make people happy. SMN: What does 2014 hold for you? DR: After five years of college, I’ve finally reached the end of the line. For a while now, my plan has been to go to Nashville and give music a real shot, but I’m not foolish enough to think that my music is anything close to what Nashville has been forcing down our throats these days. I’ll never quit making music. Music is such a part of me now, and walking away is simply not an option.

On the beat

The 2013-14 First Thursday Old-Time and Bluegrass Jam Series will continue with a concert featuring multi-instrumentalist James Leva and The Stuart Brothers at 7 p.m. Thursday, March 6, in the Mountain Heritage Center at Western Carolina University. Leva learned much of his fiddle, banjo and vocal repertoire from traditional music masters such as Tommy Jarrell and Doug Wallin. In the 1990s, Leva joined with three other musicians to create the Free Will Savages, an ensemble referred to by dobro master Jerry Douglas as “the perfect marriage between Ralph Stanley and the Sex Pistols.” In recent years, Leva has been performing with the group Purgatory Mountain.

• Steve Whiddon, Ashli Rose and Love Unmedicated will perform at the Maggie Valley Rendezvous. Whiddon will play at 6 p.m. Feb. 27, with Rose at 7 p.m. Feb. 28 and Love Unmedicated at 8 p.m. March 1. All shows are free. 828.926.0201 or • Paul Cataldo and Dave Desmelik will perform at Tipping Point Brewing in Waynesville. Cataldo will play Feb. 28, with Desmelik on March 7. Free. 828.246.9230.

arts & entertainment

Jam series to feature James Leva, Stuart Brothers

Leva will be joined on the Mountain Heritage Center stage by the Stuart brothers, two old-time musicians who grew up in the Bethel community in the shadow of Cold Mountain. The concert will be followed by an 8 p.m. jam session in which local musicians are invited to participate. Pickers and singers of all ages and experience levels are invited to take part in the jam session, which also is open to those who just want to listen. The final concert and jam in this year’s series will feature Crooked Pine on Thursday, April 3. Free. 828.227.7129.

• The Carolina Chocolate Drops will perform at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University. $5 for WCU students and $10 for the general public. or 828.227.2479. • The Apollo Winds will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, in the Coulter Building at Western Carolina University. Free. 828.227.7242 or • An open mic, bluegrass jam The Mixx and DJ KO will play Alley Kats Tavern in Waynesville. The open mic is every Monday, bluegrass jam every Tuesday, with The Mixx at 8 p.m. Feb. 27 and DJ KO at 9 p.m. Feb. 28. 828.226.7073. • Jacob Johnson, Lacy Green, James Hammel and Joe Cruz will perform at The Classic Wineseller in Waynesville. Johnson plays March 1, with Green March 6, Hammel March 7 and Cruz March 8. $10 minimum purchase on food, drink or merchandise. 828.452.6000.


Granddaughter of Duke Ellington to present at WCU

Bennett to give faculty recital at WCU

Travis Bennett will present a faculty recital at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, in the Coulter Building at Western Carolina University. Bennett is the associate professor of horn in the School of Music at WCU.

“Echoes of the Cotton Club” is the sixth in a series of academic-based entertainment projects mounted in collaboration with four departments and three colleges at WCU. Each of the shows in the series hearkens back to the golden age of radio, featuring a live orchestra and sound effects, and performed only once before a live audience. “Echoes of the Cotton Club” will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 24, in the John C. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center. Tickets are $10 and proceeds will benefit scholarships in participating academic departments. The group’s first five shows have raised nearly $25,000 for student scholarships. Tickets for “Echoes of the Cotton Club” are available by calling 828.227.2479 or at The Feb. 28 presentation is free and open to the public. 828.227.7242.

Among his performance pieces is a piano reduction of a three-movement piece by Louis Francois Dauprat, originally for horn and string quartet, created by Travis Bennett Bennett and WCU music faculty colleague Andrew Adams. In addition, the

program will include a collaboration with David Gaines, pianist at First Baptist Church of Hendersonville, on a “Rhapsody on ‘How Great Thou Art.’” The remainder of the program consists of “Valse Suriano” by Rafael Mendez (originally for trumpet and piano), three unaccompanied preludes by Yehezkel Braun, and “Episodes” by James Naigus, with accompaniment by Lillian Buss Pearson. Free. 828.227.7242.

• Brushfire Stankgrass and “Metal Night” with Amnesis will hit the stage at the Water’n Hole Bar and Grill in Waynesville. Brushfire Stankgrass will play Feb. 28, with “Metal Night” March 8. Both shows begin at 9 p.m. There is a $3 cover charge for Brushfire Stankgrass. 828.456.4750. • The “Winter Pickin’ in the Armory” will be at 7 p.m. Friday, March 7, at the Canton Armory. The event includes mountain music, vintage country, clogging and dancing. Featured performers will be by the Green Valley Cloggers and Appalachian Mountaineers, with live music from the Rick Morris Band. The “pickin’” is every first and third Friday of the month. • The Joe Lasher Jr. band will perform at 7:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, at the Canton Armory. The show is a benefit concert for the Haywood County Schools Foundation. $10. Tickets are available at Champion Credit Union or the Canton Licence Plate Agency.

Smoky Mountain News

Internationally acclaimed choreographer and dancer Mercedes Ellington will give a presentation at 11:15 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, in the Coulter Building at Western Carolina University. The “Echoes of the Cotton Club” spring radio show re-creation at Western Carolina University will start preproduction Wednesday, Feb. 26, with a visit to campus by Ellington. President of the Duke Ellington Center for the Arts in New York City, Mercedes is the granddaughter of music legend Duke Ellington, a bandleader at the Cotton Club nightclub in Harlem on which the show, an original production written by WCU’s Don Connelly, is based. She will be on campus working with singers, dancers and musicians preparing for the radio show. The presentation will also feature performances of Duke Ellington’s greatest hits by the Catamount Singers and Electric Soul.

• Barnyard Stompers, Red Honey, River Rats, Porch 40, Travers Brothers, Cutthroat Shamrock and American Gonzos will be performing at No Name Sports Pub in Sylva. Barnyard Stompers play Feb. 27, with Red Honey Feb. 28, River Rats and Porch 40 March 1, with Travers Brothers March 6, Cutthroat Shamrock March 7 and American Gonzos March 8. All shows are free and begin at 9 p.m. 828.586.2750 or

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

James Leva (pictured) and The Stuart Brothers will perform at WCU on March 6. WCU photo

• Country/rock group My Highway will perform at 8 p.m. Feb. 28 at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, at 8:30 p.m. March 1 at the Waynesville Elks Lodge (Beasley & Lane unplugged), and at 9 p.m. March 8 at O’Malley’s in Sylva. 23

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

arts & entertainment

On the stage


Feminist pioneer Gloria Steinem to speak at WCU March 6 “An Evening with Gloria Steinem” will be at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 6, in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western North Carolina. An award-winning writer and activist, Steinem has been involved globally in feminist and social justice movements for more than four decades and is currently working on a book about her years as Gloria Steinem a feminist organizer titled “Road to the Heart: America as if Everyone Mattered.” A journalist whose work has ranged from editorial columns to investigative pieces, Steinem co-founded Ms. magazine, dubbed the first national magazine to offer a feminist worldview, in 1972 and continues today to serve as a consulting editor. Her bestselling books include Revolution from Within: A Book of Self-Esteem, Outrageous Acts and Everyday Rebellions, Moving Beyond Words, and Marilyn: Norma Jean, on the life of Marilyn Monroe. In addition, Steinem helped found organizations including the Women’s Action Alliance, the National Women’s Political Caucus, the Women’s Media Center, Voters for Choice and Choice USA. Her awards range from the Society of Writers Award from the United Nations to the National Gay Rights Advocates Award.

Biography magazine listed her as one of the 25 most influential women in America, and she has been the subject of two biographical television documentaries as well as “The Education of a Woman,” a biography written by Carolyn Heilbrun. In 1993, her concern with child abuse led her to co-produce and narrate an Emmy Award-winning TV documentary for HBO, “Multiple Personalities: The Search for Deadly Memories.” Steinem’s address at WCU will follow the annual Gender Research Conference held on campus and is part of events connected to the 2013-14 campuswide interdisciplinary learning theme, “1960s: Take It All In.” The event is sponsored by the “1960s: Take It All In” steering committee; Amy Cherry, assistant professor of music and chair of the 1960s steering committee; the Office of the Provost; Undergraduate Studies; the Bardo Arts Center; Paul Lormand, director of the Bardo Arts Center; the Office of the Dean of the College of Fine and Performing Arts; the College of Fine and Performing Arts; and the Department of Anthropology and Sociology. All tickets for seats located outside a block reserved for students are $15 each. A limited number of student tickets will be sold for $5 each. In addition, a limited number of complimentary student tickets will be distributed to students attending the event as part of a class. All seating for the event is reserved. 828.227.2479 or

Lake Junaluska Peace Conference to feature international speakers

about the role faith communities have in combating disease, violence and poverty, often the causes of poor health. The conference will also feature local speakers, workshops and panels, including a presentation by practitioners of alternative spiritual approaches to health care. or 800.222.4930.

Dr. Christoph Benn, of Geneva, Switzerland, who is a founding member of the Global Fund, will be the keynote speaker of the 2014 Peace Conference at Lake Junaluska on March 27-30. Early registration has been extended until March 1. Benn spent four years in southern Tanzania on the forefront of the HIV/AIDS epidemic as the first doctor to test for the virus. He eventually helped start the Global Fund, which raises money worldwide to treat patients with HIV/AIDS in more than 140 countries. He has more than 20 years of experience in global health, including stints as a clinician in the United Kingdom and as deputy director of the German Institute for Medical Mission, during which time he helped to initiate several pilot projects to implement antiretroviral treatment in Botswana, Kenya and Russia. The conference will feature six leadership speakers from across the globe who will talk

• The dramatic monologue “Birdell” by Gary Carden will hit the stage at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 8, at The Community Table in Sylva. The production stars Bobbie Curtis as defiant mountain woman Birdell Tolly, who is forced off her land by the rising waters of the TVA’s Fontana Lake. Only 60 tickets will be available, for $10 each. or 828.586.6782.


• A benefit performance of “The Vagina Monologues” will be held at 7 p.m. Feb. 28 and March 1, in the Grandroom of A.K. Hinds University Center at Western Carolina University. Tickets are $6 in advance, and $8 at the door. or 828.227.2276.

On the street arts & entertainment

Roller team kicks off 2014 season

The Smoky Mountain Rollergirls Roller Derby Team opens its season March 1 in Bryson City. Garret K. Woodward photo


Ice cream for a cause


Calling chocolate bakers Bryson City An open call has been issued for chocolate chocolate cook-off bakers to participate in the 15th annual Taste of Chocolate Plus. The event will take place April 19 at the Maggie Valley Club. Wanted are bakers who would like to share their favorite chocolate dessert, local shops that would like to donate to the silent auction and volunteers for behind the scene activities. The funds raised will stay in the local community to help recruit volunteers for 60 organizations, as well as to counsel people on Medicare through the NC Seniors Health Information Program with supplements, advantage plans and prescription plans. Last year, the funds assisted 416 Medicare clients. 828.356.2833.

Harlem Ambassadors hit the court The internationally-acclaimed Harlem Ambassadors will play a basketball game against the Franklin Dribblers at 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, at Franklin High School. The Ambassadors offer a unique brand of Harlem-style basketball, featuring high-flying slam-dunks, dazzling ball handling tricks and hilarious comedy routines. The team sets themselves apart from other “Harlem-style” basketball teams by working with local not-for-profit and service organizations and holding Harlem Ambassadors shows as community fundraising events. For Franklin’s event the ambassadors have partnered with The Franklin Chamber of Commerce and the Franklin High School Booster Club. Adult tickets are $8, students tickets $5 and children ages 5 and under are free.

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Smoky Mountain News

Local decisions make lending...

Cooks of all things chocolate will square off at the 7th annual “Chocolate Cook-Off ” from 2:30 to 4 p.m. March 1 at the Bryson City Presbyterian Church. The Friends of the Marianna Black Library will host this tasty event to help raise money for the library. In the past, proceeds have gone to help pay for the Summer Reading Program, new equipment and new books. Admission is $6 for adults, $5 for children 4- to 16-years-old and Friend’s Members. or 828.488.0580.

The Harlem Ambassadors will play March 11 in Franklin. Donated photo

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

Jackson County Girl Scouts will host a fundraiser at 1 p.m. Saturday, March 8, at Jack the Dipper Ice Cream Parlor in Sylva. Activities include ice cream, face painting, games and prizes. Jack the Dipper will donate 10 percent of the day’s proceeds to local Girl Scouts. As the largest girl-led business in the country, the iconic Girl Scout Cookie Program helps girls develop key leadership skills including goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics. Proceeds from cookie sales benefit girls within their community. 828.508.6615 or

The Smoky Mountain Rollergirls Roller Derby Team will open its 2014 season at 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at the Swain County Recreation Center in Bryson City. From all across Western North Carolina, SMRG is a group of mixed-experience skaters, rolling with the punches, and then some. They entertain audiences with bouts against other roller derby teams from across the Southeast. The team contributes heavily to its community. Whether it be a food pantry drive during a parade or collecting school supplies, these women spread their spirit and goodwill like grease on a wheel. This season, SMRG will be focusing its fundraising efforts on Hawthorne House in Bryson City and The Cherokee Children’s Home. This organization of derby girls is highly structured with various committees to help organize and maintain a good flow of energy. No skating experience is necessary to join roller derby. The team teaches everything a member needs to know. Practice is at the Swain County Recreation Center on Sunday and Wednesday. Tickets can be purchased at for $5 or get them at the door for $7. Ages 7 and under are free.

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arts & entertainment

Past Awards 2012

Not your cookie-cutter newspaper…

First Place First Place First Place First Place First Place First Place Second Place

General News Reporting News Feature Writing Education Reporting Investigative Reporting Sports News Reporting General Excellence for Websites Education Reporting

2011 First Place First Place First Place Second Place Second Place Third Place Third Place Third Place Third Place Third Place

Education Reporting Investigative Reporting Appearance and Design General Excellence General Excellence for Websites News Feature Writing Education Reporting News Enterprise Reporting Headline Writing News Coverage

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014


…not your average staff 2013 NC Press Association News, Editorial and Photojournalism Contest

Congratulations to our award-winning staff!

FIRST PLACE Andrew Kasper

News Enterprise Reporting

SECOND PLACE News Enterprise Reporting Becky Johnson SECOND PLACE News Feature Writing Garret K. Woodward SECOND PLACE Profile Feature Garret K. Woodward SECOND PLACE Special Section Garret K. Woodward, Travis Bumgardner, Micah McClure THIRD PLACE Education Reporting Caitlin Bowling, Becky Johnson, Andrew Kasper THIRD PLACE General News Reporting Becky Johnson THIRD PLACE Investigative Reporting Becky Johnson, Andrew Kasper THIRD PLACE General Excellence for Websites Travis Bumgardner THIRD PLACE Best Niche Publication Garret K. Woodward, Travis Bumgardner, Micah McClure, Emily Moss

Media and the Law Award Andrew Kasper




First Place General News Reporting First Place Education Reporting First Place Investigative Reporting Second Place Feature Writing Second Place News Enterprise Reporting Second Place Editorials Second Place Serious Columns Second Place News Coverage Third Place News Feature Third Place A&E Reporting Third Place Sports Feature Writing Third Place General Excellence for Websites Media and Law Award Duke Divinity Award

2009 First Place Second Place Second Place Third Place

News Enterprise Reporting Community Service Investigative Reporting Appearance and Design

2008 First Place First Place Second Place Third place

Community Service News Enterprise Reporting General News Reporting Investigative

2007 First Place Second Place Second Place

Community Service News Enterprise Reporting Profile Writing

2006 First Place First Place Third Place Third Place Third Place

General News Reporting Sports Columns Investigative Reporting News Enterprise Reporting Criticism

2005 First Place Second Place Third Place

General News Reporting Investigative Reporting Editorial Writing

2004 First Place First Place Second Place Second Place Second Place Third Place

General News Reporting Investigative Reporting Investigative Reporting Sports News Reporting Lighter Columns Serious Columns


Smoky Mountain News


Of rhyme and reason, for better or worse

Jeff Minick

Poetry. Po-e-tree. A word with a lovely sound, but with bleak connotations. Tell students in a high school literature class that it’s time to read some poetry, and you might as well tell them that it’s time to read Shakespeare in Mandarin Chinese. “People still read poetry?” their eyes say. Tell adults you are reading poetry, and they will label you eccentric or gay, and often both. In my own case, it’s just eccentric. What is really Writer funny about the dislike for poetry on the part of so many people — that this dislike is real can easily be ascertained by how little poetry is read — is that so many of us listen to poetry off and on all day and all night. Songs — ranging from rap to opera — are poems. They can be written in closed form, meaning they have meter and rhyme and so on, or they can be delivered in open form, or free verse. Few of us stop to think that the song we are listening to is really a sung poem, but there it is. Yet how many Americans actually read and enjoy poetry? I’m guessing that the number would just about match those who cheer at curling tournaments. In fact, it’s a safe bet that far more people are writing poetry than reading it. The causes for the declining health of the queen of literature are numerous. Because of the mass media, songs have replaced poems, the usual case of art following money. Twentieth century poets who began directing their verse toward the literati left the rest of us — the unwashed — outside the castle

gates. Educational institutions don’t require students to memorize or study much poetry anymore. Finally, a great number of the poems written today frankly have all the perfume of a fish dead and in the sun for three days Yet even dead fish — make that dead oysters — can offer up pearls of great price. Take, for instance, Sophie Cabot Black’s The Exchange (Graywolf Press, ISBN 978-155597-6415, $15). Centered around the fatal illness of a close friend, these poems should attract readers for their clarity, the stark beauty of Black’s austere language, and the power of certain lines to jolt our hearts, which is, after all, what poetry of this sort is supposed to do. Typical of her poems here is “When It Comes:”

To reveal more dire while she watches The ground take into its arms what she thought She knew. Whoever remains gets to tell the story

I want to be whom you close Your eyes on, remembered into whatever Last you think. And the stone, left,

Oh My God!

Still there upon return. You asked me to stay Awake and so I sit until one by one the birds Come back, the child gone to the bus. With time She will simply be us; the hardest part How it does not matter. She too will carry A box to the fresh place, sudden and uncovered

Until it is true. Do not close your eyes, spare me Not one thing. In Aimless Love: New and Selected Poems (Random House, ISBN 978-0-679-64405-7, $26), Billy Collins, former Poet Laureate of the United States, has assembled poems ranging in variety from critical satire to traditional themes of love and death. Many of Collins’s poems have a playful quality, a sort of gleam in the poet’s eye as he takes on his audience. Here is one of his humorous pieces. (Read the title carefully and then imagine three or four teenage girls together):

Not only in church and nightly by their bedsides do young girls pray these days. Wherever they go, prayer is woven into their talk like a bright thread of awe. Even at the pedestrian mall

outbursts of praise spring unbidden from these glossy lips. David Rokoff ’s Love, Dishonor, Marry, Die, Cherish, Perish: A Novel (ISBN 978-0385-5321-2, $26.95) caught my eye because of the unusual title and cover, and the illustrations inside the book. Rokoff writes this novel, with variations on the meter, in heroic couplets, telling the story of different American characters and immigrants, showing the brutality of life while insisting, as the back cover reads, “on beauty and the necessity of kindness. Often his approach works well and with great humor: Susan had never donned so bourgeois A garment as Thursday night’s Christian Lacroix. In college — just five years gone — she’d have abhorred it But now, being honest, she f**king adored it. To be frank, reading 112 pages of this sort of verse can be a strain — and the verse itself is sometimes strained. Did it work? I’m not sure. But was it fun? Most definitely. And Rokoff was a brave soul simply to attempt his poetic novel. So a restrained kudos here as well.

Fahey to present international romance Author Edward Fahey will read from his novel The Mourning After at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 7, at City Lights Bookstore in Sylva. The book is about love not confined to a single lifetime, or even slowed by death. Exploring spirituality and the psychology of human relationships, the book caught the attention of readers on the other side of the ocean. Just back from a long tour of what he calls “spooky sites of magic and legend,” Fahey found he has created quite a stir overseas, and that a romance has followed him home. While his career revolved being a masseur to celebrities and others, Fahey has spent his life hunting magic. He has communed with mystics, healers, camped in deserts, lived on a ship and has traveled outof-body. He also tours decrepit castles, graveyards, abandoned monasteries, and ancient ceremonial sites, seeking contact with lingering ancient spirits. 828.586.9499.

Appalachian mystery comes to Sylva Franklin resident and author Tami Rasmussen will present her new book Murmur at 3 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at City Lights Bookstore in Sylva. Set in Franklin, Murmur is the narrative of a horrific murder, and the shocking mystery threatening a way of life in the remote location of White Rock Mountain and Hickory Gap. Murder, mystery, fear, and great loss cloak this isolated mountain community. The book is about Sonny Branch and the other mountain folks who live there, and their perseverance during the tumultuous 1970s. Resisting modern amenities and lifestyle, Branch is a strong and capable mountain woman. But love and despair bring Branch to her knees when outsiders threaten the kinship of the colorful characters who live in the small mountain commune. 828.586.9499.



Smoky Mountain News

Everyday fitness with Jim Pader Jim Pader is pretty outspoken when it comes to his health. The 83year-old exercises for at least an hour each day, hikes at every possible opportunity, has been a regular at yoga class for eight years and is quite proud of the fact that he takes exactly zero prescription drugs. But though he realizes that those attributes make him unusual, he maintains that they don’t have to. “Some people look on retirement as an opportunity to do nothing,” Pader said. “I look on retirement as an opportunity to do all those things I couldn’t do because I was working.” The key to pursuing those opportunities is staying healthy. He begins each day with 15 minutes of stretching before breakfast to loosen up his body and make sure that his ligaments and tendons stay used to moving the way they should. First, he stands up and slowly rotates his spine, twisting his hips from side to side. Then he lets his arms hang down and leans first to the left, then to the right, repeating four or five times. Next, he puts his head down to his chest and rotates it all the way around a few times. “This is hard for most old people, because their ligaments and tendons are all shrunk up,” he said. Finally, he touches his toes, starting with both hands raised high over his head. He lets them bob around, back and forth and side to side, and then brings them down very slowly, finally ending the exercise by touching his toes. That regimen alone can go a long way toward maintaining agility and stability as old age progresses, but Pader doesn’t stop there. “I exercise at least one hour every day. I also stand on my head for two minutes, and I do at least 10 pushups,” Pader said. “I don’t do everything every day. My exercise regime would take at least three hours if I did everything I do in a sequence.” Because, Pader said, the old adage is true. If you don’t use it, you’re going to lose it. “All of us are carrying baggage and luggage from our youth,” he said. “We all made mistakes. Instead of drinking that shot of whisky, we could have had a glass of water. Instead of eating that burger and fries too often, we could have had a salad. We could have. Nature is impartial. If you make a mistake, you pay for it. Either now or later. The trick is to learn the rules.”

To the summit Old age no match for record-setting Macon man BY HOLLY KAYS STAFF WRITER ot just anybody can keep up with Jim Pader. Last year alone, he hiked 534 miles and has logged 738.4 miles in Great Smoky Mountains National Park since 2001. Besides that, he works out for at least one hour per day and attends yoga class religiously. And just six


an old man like me can do it,” Pader said. “I was wondering myself if I could do it. But you’re not sure of something unless you try.” Or, more accurately, unless you try repeatedly. Pader summitted Mount Whitney before, taking three days to do it at age 77, tried a few years later to make it in one go, at age 81. Hiking with his son, also named Jim, and his trainer Sara Lowell, Pader made it to 13,000 feet before the

Jim Pader and his support team round a corner in the Mt. Whitney summit trail as sunrise lights up the rocks.

National Forest. “The first part of the program was to do 10 miles nonstop, no rest,” Pader said. “I had to build up time on my feet. I had to be able to be on my feet a long time without rest.” He marked off 2.5-mile intervals on the road, building up his stamina until he could do all 10 miles at once. After repeating that routine 10 times, Pader was ready for the next step — adding in the elevation change. Progressing from a 200-foot gain per mile on Standing Indian Road to a 400-foot gain, he did 12 rounds of the Appalachian Trail section from Rock Gap to Albert Mountain, six miles each way. “Then of course I did some 20-mile days in there,” he said. To do that, he would park at the intersection of the AT and U.S. 64 and plan legs of his hike for each direction, often to Wayah Crest and Siler Bald, with his car in the center in case he needed to bail. “I had to start at six o’clock in the morning because it would take 16 hours. That’s a long time,” Pader said. But that hard work got Pader ready for the last leg: altitude training. He began focusing his hikes on the highest points in the Smokies, and he arrived in Lone Pine, Calif., a full week before the big hike. Pader took the time to acclimate to the base altitude and to do a few more training hikes, such as an 11-mile roundtrip trek to Cottonwood Pass, elevation 11,200.


“Nearly every time I go out hiking, something different happens. A new scene, a new flower, a new way of looking at the rain, a new way of looking at the forest. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to hug a tree, but if you haven’t, do it.” — Jim Pader

months after completing a record-setting hike up Mount Whitney, the highest summit in the contiguous United States, he’s gearing up for a one-day out-and-back to the Grand Canyon. Oh, and that record he set? It was for becoming the oldest man to make the 22-mile trek in one day. Jim Pader is 83. “Most hikers, even young hikers that have done that trail, find it curiously interesting that

altitude got to him. Just 2.5 miles shy of the summit, he had to turn around. But Pader didn’t give up. “Failure is just one step towards success,” he said. “I said, ‘Dummy, you gotta do it again.’” So, two years before he would see Mount Whitney again, Pader started preparing. Back home in Franklin, he entered phase one of training on Standing Indian Road in the Nantahala

In the simplest sense, Pader began his Mount Whitney campaign for the bragging rights, a way to prove to himself that yes, he could do this, even at 83. But that’s only part of the story. Pader’s allout hiking craze began about six years ago, but he’s always been an outdoorsman, in a way that transcends the specific activity and goes straight to the soul. “Nearly every time I go out hiking, something different happens,” Pader said. “A new scene, a new flower, a new way of looking at the rain, a new way of looking at the forest. I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to hug a tree, but if you haven’t, do it.” That’s an observation based on travels everywhere from Colorado to Wyoming to Florida, and plenty of other places in between. But certain moments stand out in Pader’s memory, snapshots that, like this scene witnessed on the Appalachian Trail near Standing Indian, still force him to pause, dabbing his eyes with a napkin, as he recounts them. “I came around a turn, and I looked up at a mountainside, and the


THE ATTEMPT Sometimes, though, itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s about the feat as much as it is about the experience. For so many years, Pader said, people are defined by their work. Retirement can be tantamount to losing oneâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s identity, and that can be a slippery slope to a downwardly spiraling life. By planting his feet atop Mount Whitney, Pader aimed to make a statement: that he was still very much alive, and aimed to remain that way for as long as he could breathe. But he was still nervous. Heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d been plen-

building trail structures, rigging to stabilize and move heavy objects, and a trail maintenance course that emphasizes hands on instruction on the theory and skills to maintain and repair wilderness trails. A course will also be offered for Wilderness rangers focusing on history, policy, law, field safety, Leave No Trace, and recreation use monitoring among other topics. All tracks come together for discussions of Wilderness theory and legis-

A 10-day workshop in May will cover everything you need to know to join trail crews on overnight expeditions in Wilderness Areas. The Wilderness Skills Institute will be held May 19-30 at the Cradle of Forestry in Pisgah National Forest. It is hosted jointly by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, the Southern Appalachian Wilderness Stewards, The Wilderness Society), and the United States Forest Service. The workshop is designed for trail volunteers, forest rangers and nonprofits who help build and maintain trails in Wilderness Areas. Topics will include including Wilderness First Aid, Leave No Trace, crosscut saw, tool care,

Wilderness Skills Insitute. Bill Hodge photo

lation with some of the nationâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s most experienced stewards. Free, but spots fill up fast.


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Smoky Mountain News

exploring the areaâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s seemingly endless network of trails, he never looked back. â&#x20AC;&#x153;It gives them a feeling for being part of the earth that we come from,â&#x20AC;? Pader said of hikers like himself. â&#x20AC;&#x153;We are simply animals on this planet, and if youâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re on concrete all the time, your feet canâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t tell you what the soil is like.â&#x20AC;?

Trail junkies sign up early for Wilderness Skills Institute

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

Pader is proud to have finally conquered a single-day run on Mount Whitney.

ty determined in 2011, and he hadnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t made it then. So Pader gathered his team, composed of daughter Olga Suzannah Lampkin, son Jimmy Pader and trainer Sara Lowell, and told them that if he couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make it, he would return to the base with Lowell while the other two reached the summit. The siblings werenâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t having any of it. â&#x20AC;&#x153;My son said â&#x20AC;Śâ&#x20AC;? Pader stopped mid-sentence, wiping tears from his eyes. â&#x20AC;&#x153;My son said, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;If you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t make it, we all go back.â&#x20AC;&#x2122; Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hard to describe what that meant to me. Iâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;m fortunate to have such a son and daughter.â&#x20AC;? But the mountain was waiting, all 14,497 feet of it. The team left the trailhead at 8 p.m. on Aug. 14, hoping that a nocturnal start would reduce their likelihood of hitting any high-elevation thunderstorms. The headlamps lighting their way didnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t illuminate the spruce and pine at the base of the trail or the four lakes spread along it. By the time the sun rose and turned the craggy rock spires gold and pink, they had reached 13,000 feet. The trees were long gone, and 40 mph winds whipped through the already cold air, the toughest 2 miles of the trail still separating Paderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s group from the summit. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was starting to wonder, â&#x20AC;&#x2DC;Was this such a good idea?â&#x20AC;&#x2122;â&#x20AC;? Pader recalled. But finally, after â&#x20AC;&#x153;getting myself off of my rear endâ&#x20AC;? and completing 13 hours and 20 minutes of hiking, Pader stood on top of Mount Whitney. He was hungry, and he was tired, but Olga Suzannah pulled out a surprise stash of homemade meatballs and gourmet cheese â&#x20AC;&#x201D; â&#x20AC;&#x153;You have no idea how good that tasted,â&#x20AC;? Pader said â&#x20AC;&#x201D; and the group sat down to spend 30 minutes eating, resting and enjoying the view from the highest peak in the lower 48. But Pader wasnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t celebrating yet; going down would be as difficult as going up. Descending the rugged rock-chiseled steps, navigating the 97 switchbacks clustered around one mile of elevation loss and traversing the smooth cliffside rocks where, just two years earlier, a hiker had fallen and suffered permanent brain damage, were all before them. And all that when, by the end of the 27-hour-and-30-minute hike, they had been awake for 40 hours solid. But, despite the exhaustion and hunger, Pader reached the trailhead jubilant. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was happy, elated, proud of my support team,â&#x20AC;? Pader said, â&#x20AC;&#x153;Because without them, I couldnâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t have done it.â&#x20AC;? And what was â&#x20AC;&#x153;it,â&#x20AC;? exactly? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s hard to call it a bucket list item, because Paderâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s bucket seems to be getting fuller rather than emptier. Mount Whitney conquered, he has his eye on the 23.4-mile Grand Canyon hike, though heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d also love to hike the entire 215-mile John Muir Trail, which ends at Mount Whitney. And as far as Pader is concerned, he has until his final moments of life to make that happen. â&#x20AC;&#x153;If my death is because I fell off a mountain someplace,â&#x20AC;? he said, â&#x20AC;&#x153;That will be a good way to go.â&#x20AC;?


mountain was full, just uncountable numbers of trillium, white and pink trillium. Just gorgeous. There was a light breeze going. The trillium was swaying back and forth like a chorus of beautiful girls, almost talking,â&#x20AC;? Pader said, swaying with his arms above his head to reenact the memory. â&#x20AC;&#x153;I was the only one to see it, but I carry it in my mind.â&#x20AC;? Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s experiences like that that keep him alive, that give him a reason to push forward. Ever since becoming a charter boat captain at age 19, heâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s lived for time spent on the water, in the mountains, under the ocean â&#x20AC;&#x201D; anywhere but inside. From sailing, scuba diving and spear fishing, Pader moved to camping when his fishing trips took him the flamingo rookeries of Everglades National Park, excursions that required more than one day of out-and-back. Then, during the decades when Pader, a Chicago native, lived in Florida, he got into hiking, backpacking and camping with his wife as a way to let their two kids, Olga Suzannah and Jimmy, live out their wild side. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s a very inexpensive and wonderful way to take kids out and let them play,â&#x20AC;? Pader said. But his love for the outdoors defies practical considerations of vacation expense and play opportunities for children. It was the mountains that drew him to Franklin after Hurricane Andrew destroyed his business in Florida. After six years of futile efforts to recover, Pader found the Smokies, drawn by the mountains and the beauty of the land. When he moved here in 1999 and began

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Volunteers needed to staff Clingmans Dome information center Great Smoky Mountain National Park is recruiting volunteers to staff the Information Center at Clingmans Dome, from April 1 through Nov. 30. Volunteers are needed to provide educational, recreational and trip planning information. The center sits at an elevation of 6,300 feet and is a source of information for the national park. Volunteers will work alongside Great Smoky Mountain Association employees. Each volunteer is asked to work at least one four-hour shift per week, either 9:30 a.m. until 1:30 p.m. or 1 p.m. until 5 p.m. Volunteers are needed to fill all days of the week, but especially Friday through Sunday. A training workshop will be held Thursday, March 13, at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center just inside the park’s

Clingmans Dome information center. NPS photo

Bear in the Back Seat goes behind the scenes with the Smokies’ bear man Retired national park wildlife biologist Kim DeLozier will speak about his book, Bear in the Back Seat, on Saturday, March 15, at Sugarlands Visitor Center on the Tennessee in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park near Gatlinburg. Hear DeLozier tell about the time a sedated wild black bear woke up unexpectedly in the back seat of a helicopter in midflight, and in his car as he was driving down the highway, and in his office while he was talking on the phone.

entrance outside Cherokee. Contact Florie Takaki 828.497.1906 or

Haywood softball league signups

Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

The Waynesville Parks and Recreation Department will conduct an organizational meeting for the ISA Spring Softball Leagues at 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, at the Waynesville Recreation Center. This is a mandatory meeting for all team representatives interested in entering a team in the league. Bring a $100 non-refundable cash deposit to secure a team entry for the league. The total cost will depend on the number of teams in the league. Participants will need to bring a complete team roster. The season will begin Monday, April 7. Games will be played on Monday and Wednesday evenings at Vance Street Recreation Park. 828.456.2030 or email


Donated photo

“Kim DeLozier, a wildlife biologist in Great Smoky Mountains National Park for over 30 years, has seen just about everything when it comes to bear antics,” said Jack Hanna, director emeritus of the Columbus Zoo and host of television’s Into the Wild. “His book is packed with amazing stories that the whole family will enjoy. And, you’ll learn a ton of great pointers about how to safely view animals in the wild.” The talk is hosted by the Great Smoky Mountains Association. Cost to attend is $10 for members and $35 for nonmembers, which includes a complimentary personal or gift membership opportunity. Bear in the Back Seat is available at Great Smoky Mountains Association bookstores in Tennessee and North Carolina, as well as on their website. For more information and to register, call 888.898.9102, Ext. 222 or 254.

Fisher guru to speak at Trout Unlimited meeting Mark Cantrell, a regional biologist with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, will be the speaker at the next meeting of the Tuckaseigee Chapter of Trout Unlimited. Cantrell is an expert on aquatic ecosystems of the creeks and rivers in the mountains, and, of coure, a fly fisherman. The program will be held at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, at United Community Bank, 1640 E. Main St. in Sylva. Dinner is $5. The Tuckaseigee chapter serves Jackson, Macon and Swain counties.

Trail of Tears exhibit on display at WCU A reception and talk to accompany the new exhibit “Fewer Footprints and More Tears: Commemorating the 175th Anniversary of the Trail of Tears” will be held at 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, at the Mountain Heritage Center at Western Carolina University. Michael Abram, a scholar who focuses on Cherokee culture, will present an illustrated lecture on contemporary Cherokee artists commenting on their reactions to the Trail of Tears.

Mark Cantrell

The exhibit will run through March 14. It includes historic images and copies of historic documents, including the Henderson Roll, along with contemporary art by Cherokee artists reacting to the Trail of Tears and its historic and ongoing effect on the Cherokee people. It is on loan from the North Carolina Chapter of the Trail of Tears Association, which is dedicated to documenting all the routes and sites associated with the Trail of Tears in North Carolina. The reception will begin at 6 p.m. with a presentation in the museum auditorium at 7 p.m. Free. 828.227.7129.

ly in the old card catalog drawers once used to file book titles and authors, are being recycled and used to store the seeds. The open house also will feature local food samples. The new seed library will be open for business on Monday, March 3. 828.356.2507.

March 4, at the Fellowship Hall of the First Presbyterian Church in Sylva. Brenda Anders from Dogwood Crafters in Dillsboro will demonstrate how to create beeswax candles. The club meets the first Tuesday of each month and is open to the public.

Master Gardener plant sale orders due soon

Maggie Valley looks to community garden as team building project

Learn about the new seed library of Waynesville at an open house from 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at the Haywood County Public Library in Waynesville. This is how the seed library works: Gardeners “borrow” seeds, plant them and then harvest the seeds at the end of the growing season, and return seeds to the library for restocking. The seed library will be housed at the actual library — specifical-

Interested in putting down community roots in Maggie Valley? A meeting will be held at noon Thursday, Feb. 27, at the Maggie Valley United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall to discuss the development of a community garden. Finger goods and drinks will be provided. Other topics to be

The annual Haywood County Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association plant sale has begun. Strawberries, blueberries, black/red/golden raspberries, blackberries, asparagus crowns, and hazelnut, serviceberry, elderberry, and apricot trees are available at reduced prices. Orders are prepaid and due by March 14. Plants will be available for pickup April 12. Proceeds from the plant sale fund education-related horticulture projects in Haywood County. Pick up order forms at the Cooperative Extension Office, 589 Raccoon Road, Waynesville, or by calling the office at 828.456.3575 or by emailing

Farm Bureau has scholarships available The Haywood County Farm Bureau is accepting applications for its annual college scholarship awards for students intending to major in agriculturerelated fields. Each year it awards four scholarships — two for $1,000 for students attending a four-year college and two for $500 for students attending a two-year college. Students must be graduating seniors currently enrolled in a Haywood County school. Financial need and significant community service are factors. 828.452.1425.

Join the world of backyard chickens Interested in keeping chickens? Learn all about it from Ashley English at 2 p.m. Sunday, March 2, at the Canton Library. English is the author of several books on a variety of smallscale homesteading topics, including Keeping Chickens (2010). The interest in keeping chickens is on the rise because they are relatively simple and inexpensive to maintain, they provide fresh eggs, help with bug and weed control, and they make great by-product fertilizer. Find out what to consider beforehand (how much it will cost, the space that is needed, how much time it takes to maintain a flock, etc.) and how to select your breed, how to obtain birds and when, and how to properly house and feed chickens. This program is sponsored by the Friends of the Library. 828.648.2924.


Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

W E S T E R N C A R O L I N A U N I V E R S I T Y | S AT U R D A Y, A P R I L 5


will be ways to unify the commuLearn to make beeswax discussed nity. RSVP by emailing or by phone 828.926.8036. candles at Sylva garden club meeting Haywood’s first ever The March meeting of the Sylva Garden seed lending library Club will be held at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday,

H A L F M A R AT H O N . W C U . E D U

Tuckaseigee River before winding back onto Western Carolina University campus for the finish. Training Program, Technical Running Shirt and “Goody Bag” included with race fee.


Smoky Mountain News

Join us on a scenic journey through the Cullowhee Valley and along the

Training Program includes: running group, 11-week progressive programs for beginners and advanced runners, professional guidance for nutrition, shoe fittings, and other tips to help prepare runners for the race.


Proceeds to support student professional development and travel.

RACE HOSTS: WESTERN CAROLINA UNIVERSITY | School of Health Sciences | Campus Recreation & Wellness 31


WNC Calendar

Smoky Mountain News

COMMUNITY EVENTS & ANNOUNCEMENTS • “Fewer Footprints and More Tears: Commemorating the 175th Anniversary of the Trail of Tears,” 6 p.m. reception, 7 p.m. presentation, Thursday, Feb. 27, Mountain Heritage Center, Western Carolina University. 227.7129. • Opt-In Community Workshops, 5:30 p.m. open house, 6 to 8 p.m. discussion Thursday, Feb. 27, Tuscola High School, 564 Tuscola School Road, Waynesville., Ben Brow,; or 508.5002. • Free seminar on the requirements and liabilities of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Saturday, March 1, Macon County Public Library. • Smoky Mountain Roller Girls season opener, 6 p.m. Saturday, March 1, Swain County Recreation Center. Tickets, $5 in advance at, or $7 at the door. Children 7 and under are free., • Re-enactment of the national Women’s Suffrage Parade of 1913 in which thousands of women marched in Washington, D.C., to demand the right to vote will be held at 5:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, at Western Carolina University, starting at the breezeway outside the third floor of A.K. Hinds University Center. • Affordable Care Act question and answer session, 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, Canton Branch Library. Receive free one-on-one assistance before open enrollment ends on March 31. 648.2924. Western Carolina University will host “An Evening with Gloria Steinem” in the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 6. • An Evening with Gloria Steinem, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, March 6, Western Carolina University, John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center. $15 for non-WCU students, $5 for a limited number of student tickets. 227.2479 or go online to • Trimont Christian Academy annual Consignment Show, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday, March 8, Trimont Christian Academy, 98 Promise Lane, Franklin. To rent a booth, call 369.6756 or Facebook Trimont Christian Academy 2014 Consignment Sale. • Macon County Horse Association annual Coggins Clinic, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, March 8, Macon County Fairgrounds. Membership not required. 479.3685. • Girl Scout cookies and ice cream, 1 p.m. Saturday, March 8, Jack the Dipper Ice Cream Parlor, 170 East Sylva Shopping Center Sylva. Jackson County Girl Scouts will host an afternoon of ice cream, face painting, games and prizes. Jack the Dipper will donate 10 percent of the day’s proceeds to local Girl Scouts. 508.6615, or • Drugs In Our Midst, 5:30 p.m. Sunday, March 9, New Beginning Baptist Church, 7979 Carolina Boulevard, Clyde.

BUSINESS & EDUCATION • Computer class: Basic MS Word, 5:45 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, JCPL. 586.2016. • Southwestern Community College cosmetology students are offering haircuts, manicures and nail tech services from 8 to 11 a.m. on a first-come, first-served basis, on Tuesdays through Thursdays at SCC’s Jackson Campus in Sylva. 339.4238, or • “Love the Locals” through Feb. 28, downtown Waynesville. Special discounts for local residents.

All phone numbers area code 828 unless otherwise noted. • Free tax preparation assistance available from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. every Friday and Monday, at the Jackson County Senior Center, Sylva and from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m. by appointment every Tuesday at the Jackson County Public Library, Sylva. 586.2016 or 293.0074. • Jackson County needs volunteers to provide free basic tax forms preparation and counseling for individuals. No previous tax preparation experience is required. You will be trained and certified by local mentors using IRS and AARP Foundation training materials and guidelines. Donald Selzer, 293.0074. • Haywood Chamber Issues & Eggs, “Reaching Out to Industry,” 8 a.m. Wednesday, March 5, Laurel Ridge Country Club, Waynesville. Featured speaker, Haywood County Sheriff Greg Christopher.

FUNDRAISERS AND BENEFITS • Pancake Breakfast, 8 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Saturday, March 1, Franklin Fire Department, 49 Maple St., Franklin. $6 per person or 3 for $15. Tickets are available for pre-sale at Franklin Fire or day of event. Local deliveries available. Contact Joe Suminski, 371.2307 or 369.5417. • Pancake Day, 4 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church, 99 Academy St., Canton. $7 adults, $4 children. 648.7550.

BLOOD DRIVES • Junaluska Fire Department Blood Drive, 2 to 6 p.m. Monday, March 10, 90 Old Clyde Road, Lake Junaluska. Larry, 456.9934 or the American Red Cross at 800.733.2767.

HEALTH MATTERS • Lunch and Learn with Dr. Kit Helm, 11:45 a.m. and 12:15 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, Angel Medical Center Dinging Room. Topic is “Heart Healthy Living: An Update.” 349.8290. • Free women’s health seminar on pelvic health, 1 to 2 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, MedWest Haywood Health & Fitness Center. • Project Lazarus community forum luncheon on prescription drug misuse, abuse, diversion, overdose, and managing chronic pain, 11:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, Jackson County Health Department, 538 Scotts Creek Road, Sylva. 476.0330. Keynote speaker, Fred Wells Brason II, CEO of Project Lazarus. • Free blood pressure screenings at fred’s Pharmacy during February, American Heath Month. For each screening, fred’s will donate $1 to the American Heart Association, up to $50,000.

RECREATION & FITNESS • Spring soccer registration, 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. through Feb. 28, Jackson County Recreation Department. Must be at least 5 years old by Aug. 1 to participate. $40 for new participants, $35 for returning 2013 Fall soccer participants. Membership and sibling discounts available. Jonathan Parsons, Recreation Department in Cullowhee, 293.3053 or • Organizational meeting for ISA Spring Softball Leagues, 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, Waynesville Recreation Center. Mandatory meeting for all team rep-

resentatives interested in entering a team in the league. Bring $100 non-refundable cash deposit and a complete team roster. 456.2030 or • Adult Coed Indoor Soccer pickup games, 6 to 8 p.m. Wednesdays, through March 26, Old Hazelwood Gym, 112 Virginia Ave., Waynesville. Players must be 18 years old & up. $3 per session or $20 for a season pass punch card and available for purchase at the door. Daniel Taylor, 452.6789 or email

SENIOR ACTIVITIES • Rescheduled trip: French Broad Chocolate Lounge, 10:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, Asheville. Leave Waynesville Recreation Center at 10:30 a.m. $5 for members of the Waynesville Recreation Center or $7 for non-members. 456.2030 or email

KIDS & FAMILIES • Discover Electricity class, 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, Macon County 4-H. Learn about circuit boards, soldering and how electricity works through an electrical system. Register, 349.2046. • Breastfeeding Mothers’ Support Group, 10:30 a.m. to noon, Saturday, March 1, MedWest Harris Hospital annex building. Brandi Nations, 770.519.2903, Teresa Bryant, 587.8214, or Jennifer Luker, 587.8242. • Registration underway for high performance volleyball clinics, March 20-May 15, Recreation Center in Cullowhee. For girls in 5th - 8th grades. Limited to 20 in each class. $50. • Spring Break Camp, 7:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. April 2125, Waynesville Recreation. For children in kindergarten through sixth grade. 30 spots available. Registration deadline, 5 p.m. Monday, April 7. $90 per person. Save $10 by paying on or before March 30. 456.2030 or email

Visit and click on Calendar for: ■ Complete listings of local music scene ■ Regional festivals ■ Art gallery events and openings ■ Complete listings of recreational offerings at regional health and fitness centers ■ Civic and social club gatherings • Teen time, 4 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, JCPL. 586.2016. • Homework Help, 3 p.m. Wednesday, March 4, JCPL. 586.2016.

ECA EVENTS • Extension and Community Association (ECA) groups meet throughout the county at various locations and times each month. NC Cooperative Extension Office, 586.4009. This month’s meetings include: • 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 4 – Swerve Scarves, Kountry Krafters ECA, Tuckasegee Wesleyan Church, Tuckasegee. • 9:30 a.m. Thursday, March 6 – Spring Planting and Plant Exchange, Potpourri ECA, Community Service Center Conference Room, Sylva.

POLITICAL GROUP EVENTS & LOCAL GOVERNMENT Dems • Pot luck luncheon, 11:30 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, Haywood County Democratic Headquarters, 286 Haywood Square, Waynesville. • Jackson County Democrats annual Combined Precinct Meeting, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday March 4, Jackson County Justice Center Courtroom 2 for all precincts except Cashiers and Glenville, River and Canada .

Literary (children)


• Homework Help, 3 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, JCPL. 586.2016.

• OccupyWNC, General Assembly, 7 to 8:30 p.m., Tuesday, March 11, Room 246, Jackson County Justice Center, Sylva. 743.9747,

• Teen Advisory Group (TAG) meeting, 3:30 to 5 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, Macon County Library, Franklin. 524.3600. • Write On! Children’s Creative Writing Group, 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 26, JCPL. 586.2016 • Homework Help, 3 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, JCPL. 586.2016. • Paws to Read, 3:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, JCPL. 586.2016. • Between the Lines: Teen Creative Arts Workshop, 6 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 27, JCPL. 586.2016. • Children’s Story time: Socks, 11 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, JCPL. 586.2016. • Children’s Story time: Blanket Time, 3:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, JCPL. 586.2016. • Children’s Story time: Hurry up Spring! 2 p.m. Saturday, March 1, JCPL. 586.2016.

A&E ART/GALLERY EVENTS & OPENINGS • Rescheduled event: Reception and artist’s talk with artist Lizzy Falcon, 5:30 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, February 25, Meeting Room, Macon County Public Library. or 524.3600.

• Children’s Story time: I Can Read with My Eyes Shut, 11 am. Tuesday, March 4, JCPL. 586.2016.

• Rescheduled ceramics demonstration and artist’s talk with North Carolina potter Mark Hewitt, Thursday, Feb. 27, at the John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center at Western Carolina University. Demonstrations, 9:30 a.m. to noon, in Room 151 and artist’s talk at 5 p.m. in Room 130. Born in Stoke-on-Trent, England, Hewitt is the son and grandson of directors of Spode, makers of fine china. or 226.3595.

• Homework Help, 3 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, JCPL. 586.2016.

• Penland School of Crafts Community Open House, 1 to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 1, Penland. 765.2359.

• Children’s Story time: Rotary Readers, 11 a.m. Monday, March 3, JCPL. 586.2016. • Homework Help, 3 p.m. Monday, March 3, JCPL. 586.2016.


• Canvas Tote Bag Workshop, 1 to 4 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, Jackson County Cooperative Extension Office, Sylva. $5. 586.4009 to register and get supply list. • Multimedia artist Haidee Wilson’s Oriental Brush Painting demonstration for Art League of the Smokies, 6:15 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, Swain County Center for the Arts, Bryson City. 488.7843 or

FILM & SCREEN • Minimum Wage (socially conscious movie), 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, City Lights Café, Sylva. • Lincoln, 7:45 p.m. Friday, Feb 21 and 5 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, The Strand, 38 Main, downtown Waynesville. • New movie starring Pierce Brosnan, 4:30 p.m. and 7 p.m., Wednesday Feb. 26, Macon County Public Library, Franklin. Free. 524.3600. • Classic 1940 movie starring Greer Garson and Laurence Olivier, 2 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, Macon County Public Library, 524.3600. Free. • The Muppets, 7:45 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28 and 2 p.m. 5 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Saturday March 1, The Strand, 38 Main, downtown Waynesville. • New movie, 4:30 p.m. and 7 p. m. Wednesday, March 5, Meeting Room, Macon County Public Library, Franklin. Stars Steve Carell, Toni Collette, and Allison Janney. Rated PG-13 for thematic elements, language, some sexual content and brief drug material.

• Classic 1944 movie, 2 p.m. Friday, March 7, Meeting Room, Macon County Public Library, Franklin. Stars Tallulah Bankhead and John Hodiak.


• “The Vagina Monologues,” 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 28, and Saturday, March 1, in the Grandroom of A.K. Hinds University Center, Western Carolina University. Benefit performance for V-Day Foundation, REACH of Macon County, the Clean Slate Coalition; and the WCU Sexual Violence Awareness Fund. Tickets $6, in advance at A.K Hinds University Center in Room 330, the Department of Intercultural Affairs, or $8 at the door. Sales tax is included in the ticket price. or 227.2276. • Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 28 and March 1, and 3 p.m. Sunday, March 2, HART Studio Theater, 250 Pigeon St., Waynesville. 456.6322 or www.harttheatrecom. • Mercedes Ellington, granddaughter of Duke Ellington and internationally known choreographer and dancer, 11:15 a.m. Friday, Feb. 28, recital hall of the Coulter Building, WCU. 227.7242. • Squirm Burpee Circus, 5 p.m. Sunday, March 2, Western Carolina University’s John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center. Tickets, $20 for adults; $15 for WCU faculty and staff; $5 for students and children. Ticket prices are $15 per person for groups of 20 or more and $10 per person for groups of 50 or more. 227.2479 or • Grammy Award-winning black string band The Carolina Chocolate Drops, 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3, John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center, Western Carolina University. $5 for students and $10 for all others. Tickets at the Bardo Arts Center box office, online at or by phone, 227.2479. • Travis Bennett, associate professor of horn, WCU School of Music faculty recital, 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, recital hall of the Coulter Building. Free. 227.7242. • 2013-14 First Thursday Old-Time and Bluegrass Jam Series, 7 p.m. concert, 8 p.m. jam session, Thursday, March 6, Mountain Heritage Center, Western Carolina University. 227.7129.

• Paul Cataldo and Dave Desmelik will perform at Tipping Point Brewing in Waynesville. Cataldo will play Feb. 28, with Desmelik on March 7. Free. 246.9230.

MUSIC JAMS • Music Jam every Thursday night from 6 to 8 p.m. at Frog Level Brewery on Commerce Waynesville. First and third Thursday are mostly Celtic; second and fourth are mostly Old Time; fifth Thursday anything goes. All acoustic instruments are welcome. Newcomers welcome. Contact or

Outdoors OUTINGS, HIKES & FIELDTRIPS • Wildflower walks, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Friday in March and April. Meet and register at Cashiers/Glenville Recreation Center. Sponsored by the Jackson County Parks and Recreation Department. 631.2020. • Bike clinics, 6 to 7:30 p.m. Monday, March 3 and 10, Waynesville Annex II, second floor, backside, 1233 N. Main, Waynesville; 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Saturday, March 22 and 29, Colonial Theater, Canton; 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, April 12, Clyde Elementary School, Clyde. For ages 15 and up. Teenagers must be accompanied by an adult. Must pre-register, 452.6789. • Map and Compass Navigation Basics, 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Sunday, March 9, REI Asheville. $30 REI members, $50 non-members. Register at


•2014 Chili Challenge, 3 to 6 p.m. Sunday, March 9, Maggie Valley Inn & Conference Center. 926.1686 or email to

• Darren Nicholson (Balsam Range) and Summer McMahan (Mountain Faith) concert, 6 to 8:30 p.m. Saturday, March 8, Community Room, Jackson County Library Complex, Sylva. Each will perform songs from their individual, newly released CDs. Tickets, $10, at the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce. Proceeds to benefit the 2014 Concerts on the Creek summer music series.

• Bakers wanted for 15th annual Taste of Chocolate, 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday, April 19, Maggie Valley Club. $12 in advance, $15 at the door. Proceeds help organizations in Haywood County. John, 356.2833.

• “Birdell,” by Gary Carden, 5:30 p.m. Saturday, March 8, The Community Table, 23 Central St., Sylva. A fundraiser for The Community Table. Tickets, $10. Amy Sims, or 586.6782.

• Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials want public input on Environmental Assessment of construction of new concession facilities at Smokemont Riding Stables. Deadline for comments is March 14. See EA at and click on “Smokemont Riding Stables EA” link. Or submit comments to NPS Planning website at 865.436.1207.

LITERARY (ADULTS) • The Write Ones, adult creative writing group, 6 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, JCPL. 586.2016. • Retired national park wildlife biologist Kim DeLozier, author of “Bear in the Back Seat, Saturday, March 15, Sugarlands Visitor Center, Gatlinburg. $10 for Great Smoky Mountain Association members and $35 for non-members, which includes a complimentary personal or gift membership opportunity. 888.898.9102, Ext. 222 or 254.

NIGHT LIFE • Lorin Walker Madsen, 8 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, No Name Pub, 1070 Skyland Dr., Sylva •Comedian Gilbert Lawand, 9 p.m. Feb. 28 at BearWaters Brewing Company in Waynesville. Cary Goff, Ryan Folks, Kelly Rowe, Peter Smith-McDowell and Art Sturtevant will also take the stage. Ages 18 and over only. $5. 246.0602. • Country/rock group My Highway, 8 p.m. Feb. 28 at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort, at 8:30 p.m. March 1, Waynesville Elks Lodge (Beasley & Lane unplugged), and at 9 p.m. March 8 at O’Malley’s in Sylva.

• Online registration is open through Tuesday, April 1, for Western Carolina University’s 4th annual Valley of the Lilies Half Marathon and 5K, which will be held Saturday, April 5, on the campus in Cullowhee. Fee goes up March 1. or contact race directors Shauna Sage or James Scifers at

• Great Smoky Mountain National Park is recruiting volunteers to staff the Information Center at Clingmans Dome, from April 1 through November 30. Training will be held Thursday, March 13, at the Oconaluftee Administration Building north of Cherokee. Contact Florie Takaki at 497.1906 or Monday through Friday.


• Haywood County Beekeepers Club one-day beginners beekeeping class, 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 22, County Extension office. Intermediate beekeeping school, 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays, March 13, 20, 27 and April 3, County Extension office. Beginner class information, 421.1000 or 456.3575. Intermediate class information, 279.5614 or 400.1735. • Maggie Valley community meeting to talk about ways to foster goodwill in the community, including planting a community garden, noon Thursday, Feb. 27, Maggie Valley United Methodist Church Fellowship Hall. or 926.8036. • Join the Arbor Day Foundation in February and receive 10 free Colorado blue spruce trees to plant when the weather turns warm. Send a $10 contribution to TEN FREE COLORADO BLUE SPRUCE TREES, Arbor Day Foundation, 100 Arbor Avenue, Nebraska City, NE 68410, by Feb. 28, or visit • Keeping Chickens, 2 p.m. Sunday, March 2, Canton Branch Library. Learn about raising chickens with Ashley English, author of Keeping Chickens. 648.2924. • Seed Library of Waynesville Open House, 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, March 2, Waynesville Library. Celebrate firstever seed lending library in Haywood County. 356.2507. Buy fruit trees, berry bushes and more at Haywood Extension plant sale • Sylva Garden Club, 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, March 4, Fellowship Hall of the First Presbyterian Church in Sylva. Meeting hostesses will be Susan Belcher and Polly Davis. The program will be presented by Brenda Anders from Dogwood Crafters in Dillsboro. • Annual Haywood County Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association plant sale. Orders are pre-paid and due by March 14. Get order forms at the Cooperative Extension Office, 589 Raccoon Road, Waynesville. 456.3575, • 39th annual WNC Home, Garden & Green Living Show, March 21-23, U.S. Cellular Center, downtown Asheville. • The Master Gardeners of Haywood County present their biennial garden tour: “Forests, Flowers & Food,” 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., rain or shine, Saturday, June 21. Tickets are $15 and may be purchased in advance by calling 456.3575.


Smoky Mountain News

• Tuckaseigee River Chapter #373 of Trout Unlimited meeting, 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 4, United Community Bank, 1640 E. Main St., Sylva. Dinner is $5. Chapter #373 serves Jackson, Macon and Swain counties. Speaker is Mark Cantrell.

• Tami Rasmussen will present her new book, Murmur, at 3 p.m. Saturday, March 1, City Lights Bookstore, Sylva. 586.9499.

• College of Education and Allied Professions at Western Carolina University 2nd annual golf tournament, 1 p.m. Saturday, March 29, High Vista Country Club, Mills River. Proceeds go to scholarship funds for students in the College of Education and Allied Professions. 227.3556 or Deadline is Monday, March 17.


• POE: An Evening of Chills and Thrills” featuring “The Raven” The Black Cat” and “The Monkey’s Paw,” 7:30 p.m. March 14-15, and 3 p.m. Sunday, March 16, HART Studio Theater, 250 Pigeon St. Waynesville. 456.6322, www.harttheatrecom.

• “In Praise of the Edges: Southern Food Studies from Appalachia to Texas,” 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, UNC Asheville, Karpen Hall, featuring Elizabeth Engelhardt, scholar and writer on food, culture and gender in the South. Engelhardt is the author of A Mess of Greens: Southern Gender and Southern Food (University of Georgia Press, 2011) and Republic of Barbecue: Stories Beyond the Brisket (University of Texas Press, 2009. 251.6592.

registration at, but an extra $3.25 fee is included. Brian Barwatt, 506.2802 or

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

• Gravity, 7:45 p.m. Friday, March 7 and 5 p.m. and 7:45 p.m. Saturday, March 8, The Strand, 38 Main, downtown Waynesville.

• WCU School of Music Winter Choral Concert featuring the University Choir and the Concert Choir, 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 27, recital hall of the Coulter Building. Directed by Michael Lancaster, director of choral activities at WCU. Free. 227.7242.

• Steve Whiddon, Ashli Rose and Love Unmedicated will perform at the Maggie Valley Rendezvous. Whiddon will play at 6 p.m. Feb. 27, with Rose at 7 p.m. Feb. 28 and Love Unmedicated at 8 p.m. March 1. Free. 926.0201 or

wnc calendar

• Claymates Pottery fundraisers: Feb. 27-28, 30 percent of sales to Cullowhee United Methodist Church. 31 Front St., Dillsboro,631.3133,


• Jackson County Parks and Recreation Department indoor triathlon, 9 a.m. Saturday, March 15, CashiersGlenville Recreation. Rowing, biking, running. Register at or call 631.2020.

• Carolina Mountain Club hosts more than 150 hikes a year, including options for full days on weekends, full days on Wednesdays and half days on Sundays. Non-members contact event leaders.

• 4th annual Assault on Black Rock (ABR), 9 a.m. Saturday, March 22, Jackson County. Proceeds to benefit the Community Table. Register at, “event calendar.” Online

• High Country Hikers, based in Hendersonville, plans hikes Mondays and Thursdays weekly. Participants should bring a travel donation and gear mentioned on their website: 808.2165 33


Now Hiring

828.452.0010 ANNOUNCEMENTS

MarketPlace information:

REACH READERS ACROSS North Carolina for only $330. Run your 25-word classified line ad in 99 newspapers with one call to this newspaper or call NCPS 919.789.2083.

The Smoky Mountain News Marketplace has a distribution of 16,000 every week to over 500 locations across in Haywood, Jackson, Macon, and Swain counties along with the Qualla Boundary and west Buncombe County. For a link to our MarketPlace Web site, which also contains a link to all of our MarketPlace display advertisers’ Web sites, visit

ARTS & CRAFTS ALLISON CREEK Iron Works & Woodworking. Crafting custom metal & woodwork in rustic, country & lodge designs with reclaimed woods! Design & consultation, Barry Downs 828.524.5763, Franklin NC

Rates: ■ Free — Residential yard sale ads, lost or found pet ads. ■ Free — Non-business items that sell for less than $150. ■ $12 — Classified ads that are 50 words or less; each additional line is $2. ■ $12 — If your ad is 10 words or less, it will be displayed with a larger type. ■ $3 — Border around ad and $5 — Picture with ad. ■ $50 — Non-business items, 25 words or less. 3 month or till sold. ■ $300 — Statewide classifieds run in 117 participating newspapers with 1.6 million circulation. Up to 25 words. ■ All classified ads must be pre-paid.

AUCTION HARPER’S AUCTION COMPANY Antiques • Households • Collectibles • We Are Always Accepting Quality Consignments. Let Us Help You With Your Auction Needs. We Even Come to You, Just Call for an Appointment. 47 Macon Center Dr. Franklin, NC 828.369.6999, Debra Harper NCAL# 9659 NCFL# 9671

Classified Advertising: Scott Collier, phone 828.452.4251; fax 828.452.3585 |

OFFICE SUPPLY/TAX SEIZURE Auction - Thursday. March 6 at 10am. 201 S. Central Ave., Locust, NC. (East of Charlotte) Selling 2 Tractor Trailer Loads of Office Supplies. Also for NC Department of Revenue for Unpaid Taxes, a Merle Norman Cosmetics Store, Audio/Video/Electronics Store & a Mattress Store. 704.507.1449 ncaf5479.


Serving Haywood, Jackson & Surrounding Counties









Service truck available for on-site repairs LEE & PATTY ENSLEY, OWNERS




REAL ESTATE AUCTION Dates: 3/8, 3/11, 3/15, 3/18, 3/20. 36 properties- duplexes, houses, building/lot, 30-unit apartment complex. Archdale & High Point, NC. Richie Hughes Auction & Real Estate. 336.847.7472. NCAL6206/NCRBN202693. ONLINE ONLY AUCTION W/ Bid Center, Custom Home & Lot Located in Pinehurst, NC, 2/28 at 8am to 3/7 at 3pm. Bid Center On Site, Iron Horse Auction Co., Inc., For more info 800.997.2248. NCAL3936. See Website for Details

BUILDING MATERIALS HAYWOOD BUILDERS Garage Doors, New Installations Service & Repairs, 828.456.6051 100 Charles St. Waynesville Employee Owned.

CONSTRUCTION/ REMODELING ALL THINGS BASEMENTY! Basement Systems Inc. Call us for all of your basement needs! Waterproofing, Finishing, Structural Repairs, Humidity and Mold Control. FREE ESTIMATES! Call 1.800.698.9217 DAVE’S CUSTOM HOMES OF WNC, INC Free Estimates & Competitive rates. References avail. upon request. Specializing in: Log Homes, remodeling, decks, new construction, repairs & additions. Owner/Builder: Dave Donaldson. Licensed/Insured. 828.631.0747 or 828.508.0316 SULLIVAN HARDWOOD FLOORS Installation- Finish - Refinish 828.399.1847.

AUTO PARTS DDI BUMPERS ETC. Quality on the Spot Repair & Painting. Don Hendershot 858.646.0871 cell 828.452.4569 office.

CARS 1984 MUSTANG GT Complete Restomode! Too Much to List. Sacrifice at $13,000. For more info call 828.226.7461 DONATE YOUR CAR Fast Free Towing 24 hr. Response Tax Deduction United Breast Cancer Foundation Providing Free Mammograms & Breast Cancer Info 888.759.9782. SAPA DONATE YOUR CAR Fast Free Towing. 24 hr. Response. Tax Deduction. United Breast Cancer Foundation, Providing Free Mammograms & Breast Cancer Info 855.733.5472

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SEEKING CHEF FOR NEW Waynesville restaurant serving small plate/tapas-style cuisine. Excellent opportunity for experienced cook/recent culinary grad who has classic technique, commitment to quality, eye for detail, and creative flair. Qualified candidates will be efficient, focused, possess solid knife skills, and have a general understanding for cooking principles. Experience in small, fast-paced kitchen a plus. Evenings & weekends. Email inquiries to: FLATBED PROFESSIONALS Run Regional only. West of Interstate #73/74. Top Pay Program. Great Benefits Plan. *Home Every Weekend* reqs clean CDL-A/MVR 1.800.543.9198 x 118 HEAVY EQUIPMENT OPERATOR Training! Bulldozers, Backhoes, Excavators. 3 Week Hands On Program. Local Job Placement Assistance. National Certifications. GI Benefits Eligible. 866.362.6497 REGIONAL CDL-A DRIVERS Great Career w/weekly hometime! 888.362.8608. For paid training, apply online at Equal Opportunity Employer. Females, minorities, protected veterans and individuals with disabilities are encouraged to apply. NURSING CAREERS BEGIN HERE Get trained in months, not years. Small classes, no waiting list. Financial aid for qualified students. Apply now at Centura College 888.893.3477

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Prevent Unwanted Litters! The Heat Is On! Spay/Neuter For Haywood Pets As Low As $10. Operation Pit is in Effect! Free Spay/Neuter, Microchip & Vaccines For Haywood Pitbull Types & Mixes! Hours:

Ann knows real estate! Ann Eavenson CRS, GRI, E-PRO

506-0542 CELL 229-23

Tuesday-Friday, 12 Noon - 6 pm 182 Richland Street, Waynesville

101 South Main St. Waynesville


MainStreet Realty

PUBLISHER’S NOTICE All real estate advertising in this newspaper is subject to the Fair Housing Act which makes it illegal to advertise “any preference, limitation or discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin, or an intention, to make any such preference, limitation or discrimination” Familial status includes children under the age of 18 living with parents or legal custodians, pregnant women and people securing custody of children under 18. This newspaper will not knowingly accept any advertising for real estate which is in violation of the law. Our readers are hereby informed that all dwellings advertised in this newspaper are available on an equal opportunity basis.

(828) 452-2227

Your Local Big Green Egg Dealer



10-5 M-SAT. 12-4 SUN.


BRUCE MCGOVERN A Full Service Realtor McGovern Property Management 828.283.2112.



Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

HIGHLANDS-CASHIERS HOSPITAL Positions now available: ER and Med/Surg Registered Nurses, C.N.A.’s, Radiologic Technologist, Inpatient Coder, Rehabilitation Services Manager, and Accounting Clerk/ Administrative Assistant. Benefits available the first of the month following 60 days of full-time employment. PreEmployment screening required. Call Human Resources. 828.526.1376, or apply online at: www.highlandscashiershospital. org


WNC MarketPlace

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NOW ACCEPTING APPLICATIONS Offering 1 & 2 Bedroom Apartments, Starting at $400 Section 8 Accepted - Handicapped Accessible Units When Available

OFFICE HOURS: Tues. & Wed. 10:00am - 5:00pm & Thurs. 10:00am- 12:00pm 168 E. Nicol Arms Road Sylva, NC 28779

Phone# 1.828.586.3346 TDD# 1.800.725.2962 Equal Housing Opportunity

find us at:


WNC MarketPlace


LOTS FOR SALE 2.819 ACRE TRACT Building Lot in great location. Build your 2nd home log cabin here. Large 2-story building near HCC, was a Work Shop. Reduced - Reduced $64,750 Call 828.627.2342.

REAL ESTATE AUCTION Dates: 3/8, 3/11, 3/15, 3/18, 3/20. 36 properties- duplexes, houses, building/lot, 30-unit apartment complex. Archdale & High Point, NC. Richie Hughes Auction & Real Estate. 336.847.7472. NCAL6206/NCRBN202693.

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IN FRANKLIN, NORTH CAROLINA Convenient Location. Two Buildings, Approx. 5,000 sq. ft. of Storage and Offices. 17 Roll-up Doors. A Four Room Office with Bathroom; A Two Room Office with Bathroom Plus Shower; One Large Office with Bathroom. Ideal for Small Businesses (Plumbing, Electrical, AC/Heat, Salesroom, Etc.) Owners Motivated. 828.342.3170.

STORAGE SPACE FOR RENT GREAT SMOKIES STORAGE Conveniently located off 19/23 by Thad Woods Auction. Available for lease now: 10’x10’ units for $55, 20’x20’ units for $160. Get one month FREE with 12 month contract. Call 828.507.8828 or 828.506.4112 for more info.

COMPARE QUALITY & PRICE Shop Tupelo’s, 828.926.8778. FURNITURE: Oak Bedroom Set; Oak Dining Table/1 Leaf/ 4 Armchairs; Sofa; Oak Wine Cabinet; Armoire, Hope Chest; File Cabinet ect.; Mountain/Lodge Decor. For more info 828.631.2675 HAYWOOD BEDDING, INC. The best bedding at the best price! 533 Hazelwood Ave. Waynesville 828.456.4240

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LAWN AND GARDEN HEMLOCK HEALERS, INC. Dedicated to Saving Our Hemlocks. Owner/Operator Frank Varvoutis, NC Pesticide Applicator’s License #22864. 48 Spruce St. Maggie Valley, NC 828.734.7819 828.926.7883, Email:

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Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

Great Smokies Storage










828.506.4112 or 828.507.8828 Conveniently located off 19/23 by Thad Woods Auction

Puzzles can be found on page 38. These are only the answers.


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Beverly Hanks & Associates — • • • • • • •





ERA Sunburst Realty —


Cell (828) 226-2298 Cell

Haywood Properties —

2177 Russ Avenue Waynesville NC 28786

• Steve Cox —

Keller Williams Realty 229-03

NOTICES BEWARE OF LOAN FRAUD. Please check with the Better Business Bureau or Consumer Protection Agency before sending any money to any loan company. SAPA

SCHOOLS/ INSTRUCTION AIRLINES ARE HIRING Train for hands on Aviation Career. FAA approved program. Financial aid if qualified. Job placement assistance. Call Aviation Institute of Maintenance. 877.300.9494.

Michelle McElroy — Marilynn Obrig — Mike Stamey — Ellen Sither — Jerry Smith — Billie Green — Pam Braun — • Rob Roland — • Ron Kwiatkowski —

Mountain Home Properties — • Sammie Powell —

Full Service Property Management 828-456-6111

Main Street Realty — McGovern Real Estate & Property Management • Bruce McGovern — Residential and Commercial Long-Term Rentals

Preferred Properties • George Escaravage —

Prudential Lifestyle Realty — Realty World Heritage Realty

EARN YOUR High School Diploma at home in a few short weeks. Work at your own pace. First Coast Academy. Nationally accredited. Call for free brochure. 1.800.658.1180, extension 82. SAPA • Carolyn Lauter

• Thomas & Christine Mallette

RE/MAX — Mountain Realty

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The Real Team


Real Experience. Real Service. Real Results.


MOUNTAIN REALTY 1904 S. Main St. • Waynesville

• • • • • • • • • | Brian K. Noland — Connie Dennis — Mark Stevens — Mieko Thomson — The Morris Team — The Real Team — Ron Breese — Dan Womack — Catherine Proben —

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Haywood County Real Estate Agents

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

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WNC MarketPlace

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The Seller’s Agency — • Phil Ferguson — 229-36


Smoky Mountain News

Feb. 26-March 4, 2014




CHIEF SODA PRODUCTS ACROSS 1 Umpire’s face wear 5 Consumer’s antifraud gp. 8 Massive 15 Dating from 19 One of the Galápagos Islands 21 Kind of cable that conducts electrical signals 22 - monster (lizard) 23 Start of a riddle 25 Pol. middle-of-theroaders 26 Powerball, for example 27 “Evil Woman” rock gp. 28 Miss.-to-Mich. dir. 29 Dull-edged 30 Previous to 31 Riddle, part 2 36 Remove sodium chloride from 39 Villa d’40 Erie and Tahoe 41 Gold, in Spain 42 Keep attached 44 Most trifling 45 Prefix for “the same” 46 Riddle, part 3 49 Comedian Foxx 50 Swapped 52 With 6-Down, what a sad person sings 53 Robbins or Rice 54 Elongated fish 55 Thickhead 57 Inuit homes 59 Riddle, part 4 65 Hat fabric 66 “Gilligan’s Island”

5 Ghost’s cry 6 See 52-Across 7 Part of some hammers 8 Polar 9 Unification Church member 10 Hawaii’s - Loa 11 Did very well 12 Vardalos of films 13 “I’ve got a mule, her name is -” 14 Right-angled annex 15 Nimble 16 Small blood cavity in organ tissue 17 Language of medieval Scandinavia 18 Fare from McDonald’s or Wendy’s 20 Sgt., say 24 Makes out all right 29 Eateries 31 Old video game systems 32 Pkg. for a dozen eggs 33 Tightly packed fish 34 - out (barely earn) 35 Mix again 37 Hgt. 38 Caused 43 Verve 44 Hodgepodge 46 Rigid 47 “Gosh golly!” 48 Guy, informally 49 Splits anew 51 Top-floor storage area 54 Farthest from the DOWN 1 Whimpered like a baby start 56 Actor James Van 2 On the beach Beek 3 Floods 4 “Boston Public” actor 58 German king, 936-73 59 Higher-priced Nicky star 67 Villain in 113-Across 68 Riddle, part 5 71 - frisé (small dog) 73 “Buy - regular price, get ...” 74 Mined matter 75 Give relief to 76 Past 77 Family name of old rulers of Florence 80 Bonny girl 82 Riddle, part 6 85 Suffix with percent 86 Rub with holy oil 88 Attaches with a pop 89 “Hold on a -!” 90 Put in a new cage 91 Contender 92 AOL notes 96 End of the riddle 100 Frat “T” 101 “- a break!” 102 Prone (to) 103 “- -hoo!” (“Hey!”) 104 Pick - (draw from the deck) 106 Lariat, e.g. 107 Riddle’s answer 112 Greek strife goddess 113 Shakespeare play 114 Drive while car shopping 115 Part of YTD 116 Curly-coated dogs 117 “Gotcha!” 118 It borders Vietnam

60 Kabuki sash 61 “- seen enough” 62 Responses to groaners 63 Disco-era term meaning “galore” 64 “It hit me like a bricks” 66 “Maude” star Arthur 69 - -for (neglected) 70 Director Rob 71 Tendencies 72 Dialect 75 iPhone buy 77 Didn’t ignite properly 78 Italian stage actress Duse 79 Dilapidated 81 Tempered with heat 82 What a cyclops has 83 Arctic regions 84 Genetic stuff 87 Pos., to neg. 88 Funny Caesar 91 ESPN sports analyst Dick 93 Roma’s land 94 U.S.-Mexico border city 95 Washes with soapy water 97 Ed of Reagan’s cabinet 98 Incantation 99 “There ought - law!” 104 Trial fig. 105 Lower-left PC key abbr. 107 Vertex 108 1999 Seattle protest subj. 109 “Well now!” 110 Hairstyles 111 -Kosh B’Gosh

answers on page 36

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SERVICES *REDUCE YOUR CABLE BILL* Get a 4-Room All-Digital Satellite system installed for FREE! Programming starting at $19.99/MO. FREE HD/DVR upgrade for new callers. CALL NOW 1.800.795.1315 SAPA

SCOTTISH TARTANS MUSEUM 86 East Main St., Franklin, 828.584.7472. Matthew A.C. Newsome, GTS, FSA, SCOT., Curator & General Manager, Ronan B. MacGregor, Business Assistant.

DIRECTV $0 START COSTS! 150+ Channels $7.50/week! FREE HBO/Cinemax/Showtime/Starz! FREE Whole Home HD/DVR! FREE Installation! Local Installers! Hurry Ends Soon Call Now 1.800.983.2690. SAPA

REDUCE YOUR CABLE BILL! Get a whole-home Satellite system installed at NO COST and programming starting at $19.99/mo. FREE HD/DVR Upgrade to new callers, SO CALL US NOW 1.866.983.7935

DISH TV RETAILER Starting at $19.99/month (for 12 mos.) & High Speed Internet starting at $14.95/month (where available.) SAVE! Ask About SAME DAY Installation! CALL Now! 1.800.405.5081

DISH TV RETAILER - SAVE! Starting $19.99/month (for 12 months.) FREE Premium Movie Channels. FREE Equipment, Installation & Activation. CALL, COMPARE LOCAL DEALS! 1.800.351.0850. SAPA

MEDICAL GUARDIAN Top-rated medical alarm and 24/7 medical alert monitoring. For a limited time, get free equipment, no activation fees, no commitment, a 2nd waterproof alert button for free and more - only $29.95 per month. 800.615.3868

SERVICES DISH TV RETAILER. Starting at $19.99/month (for 12 mos.) & High Speed Internet starting at $14.95/month (where available.) SAVE! Ask About SAME DAY Installation! CALL Now! 1.800.351.0850 SAPA FROG POND DOWNSIZING Helping Hands In Hard Times. Downsizing - Estate Sales - Clean Out Services. Company Transfer Divorce - We are known for Honesty & Integrity! Jack & Yvonne Wadham, Insured & Bonded. 18 Commerce Street, Waynvesville, NC. 828.734.3874 MY COMPUTER WORKS: Computer problems? Viruses, spyware, email, printer issues, bad internet connections - FIX IT NOW! Professional, U.S.-based technicians. $25 off service. Call for immediate help. 1.888.582.8147 SAPA DDI BUMPERS ETC. Quality on the Spot Repair & Painting. Don Hendershot 858.646.0871 cell 828.452.4569 office.

YARD SALES NORTH CANTON ELEMENTARY School Fund Raiser Yard Sale. Sat. March 8th, 7 - 11am. Located at N.C.E’s Cafeteria. Multi-Family, many items. All proceeds to help pay for Camp Daniel Boone trip in April. Thanks for your support!

WEEKLY SUDOKU Place a number in the empty boxes in such a way that each row across, each column down and each small 9-box square contains all of the numbers from one to nine. Answers on Page 36

Gypsies conjure memories of the past


hen I was a boy growing up in south-central Virginia during the early 1950s, my home was situated near a wooded area, one side of which was traversed by a narrow dirt road beyond which there was a natural spring. Periodically every summer a band of gypsies would suddenly show up — as if out of nowhere — set up camp alongside that road for several weeks, and then just as mysteriously disappear into thin air. It was probably an extended family group, as there was one old couple and several younger couples, along with young people, including a baby or two, and older boys and girls my age. They had a caboose-like vehicle painted

BACK THEN red, with yellow trim, mounted on rubber tires. It was pulled by a team of horses and served as both a cart and a portable house. I recall that one of them also owned a mid-1930s jalopy that was jet-black. My mother and our neighbors identified these darkskinned sometimes gaudily-dressed people as “gypsies,” and Columnist I have no reason, in retrospect, to doubt that this was true. Each year mother warned me not to go near their camp as gypsies were prone to kidnap children and take them away forever. That warning only whetted my appetite, of course. I wasn’t, after all, absolutely sure that I didn’t want to be taken away by gypsies. Each summer, I would visit the camp. At their invitation, I ate lunch with them several times under the tarp. The boys, who were my age, were excellent companions when tramping through the woods. They carried slingshots with which they were exceedingly accurate. And they were every bit my equal when it came to playing baseball, which was my passion.

George Ellison

“The Gypsies are coming … This is a phrase that may elicit a variety of emotions in the listener: curiosity, excitement, wariness, fear …. Gypsies were travelers. They spoke a mysterious dialect (Romani) which had its origins somewhere in India. Their presence was first noted in Western Europe in 1417 and they had been in America since colonial times. Most Gypsies had blended with the general population in subsequent years, but with the influx of immigrants from Southern and Eastern Europe in the last quarter of the 19th century, the Gypsies became a much more familiar presence on the American scene.” — Ed Nizalowski, The Gypsies Are Coming! (1998)

I can attest that neither their parents nor would arrive at the door of a cabin and ask the their grandparents ever displayed the slightoccupants for ham. If she was ever refused she est interest in taking me away with them. would shake her head menacingly and mutter So, that’s a long-winded explanation as strange words over the soap pot. No amount of to why I’ve always been sort of interested in stirring, adding grease or ash lye would make gypsies. One of my favorite authors is the evil smelling liquid congeal. George Borrow, who traveled with the gyp“There upon the settler would send for sies in Europe and recorded their lifestyles the woman and give her a ham. The same in mid-nineteenth century books like thing happened to the churns. If the old Romany Rye. woman did not receive what she asked for I’d never supposed that gypsies ever no amount of churning would produce butmade an appearance in ter. Western North Carolina “Some of until, by chance, I ran the settlers across an anonymous took to catchaccount in the “Graham ing chickens County Centennial, and having 1872-1972” volume titled them ready “Gypsies in Cheoah and give to Valley.” Here it is: the Gypsies Vincent Van Gogh’s Les roulottes, “Long before Graham by the time campement de bohémiens aux environs County was formed from they arrived d'Arles [Caravans, gypsy camp near Arles] Cherokee, an old Gypsy at the door. woman and her sons with Others sent the last name of Lemming escaped from jail in provisions on ahead when they saw the old Knoxville, Tennessee and made their way over woman coming; for a rumor had gotten out the hills and mountains into Cheoah Valley. that the Gypsy woman could conjure the They took up their abode in an old abandoned clouds above and dry up the spring. Indian hut. Neither the old man nor the old “It was great relief to the settlers when woman nor the sons were ever seen doing any the wanderlust in the hearts of the Gypsies kind of work other than cooking … At first, caused them to move on. They disappeared when the Gypsies appeared at the door, the setfrom Cheoah Valley as suddenly as they had tlers gave them provisions … The old woman appeared.”





Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

at 20 ore 3600 m See .com/ rbo w.v

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Smoky Mountain News Feb. 26-March 4, 2014

SMN 02/26/14  

A weekly newspaper covering Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina.

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