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Asheville, North Carolina News

Archive for June, 2009

City of Asheville Seeks Oversight and Strategy for River Arts District

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Asheville art

ASHEVILLE, NC – The City of Asheville, NC is seeking statements of qualifications and proposals to produce environmental documentation, analyze project alternatives, develop preliminary designs, and develop a strategy for project implementation for roadway improvements and greenway improvements in the River Arts District in Asheville. This project implements a portion of the Wilma Dykeman Riverway Master Plan. The environmental analysis and design process is intended to move the project closer to implementation. The selected firm will also be responsible for coordinating a stakeholder’s group, and involving environmental agencies and the public in the project development process.

The consultant or consultant team must demonstrate that they have experience managing successful studies with a scope and focus similar to what is desired for the Riverway. Consultants should demonstrate expertise in all aspects of traffic engineering, as well as understanding of transportation-land use relationships, bicycle/pedestrian planning, context-sensitive roadway design and urban design. The successful teams must have experience with environmental analysis and documentation that meet the requirements of the federal government and the State of North Carolina.

Inquiries and questions about this proposal should be submitted via email to Dan Baechtold at [email protected].

Neighborhood YMCA at Reynolds Village to Host Open House

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Biltmore Park

WOODFIN, NC – The YMCA of Western North Carolina is hosting Bagels and Banter, presented by Crescent PPO, with the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce, at the new Neighborhood YMCA at Reynolds Village in Woodfin, 8-9 a.m. July 30. This event was formerly known as Doughnuts and Dialogue.

See the new Neighborhood YMCA at Woodfin and enjoy a quick and healthy breakfast. Ingles dietitian Leah McGrath will discuss healthy meal ideas, and will present with Mayor Terry Bellamy during the breakfast.

Bagels and Banter provides an opportunity for the YMCA to showcase the community-building work Pioneering Healthier Community Committees are doing in the Asheville area. Attendees will learn about a variety of groups including schools, businesses, and local government involved in making Asheville a healthier place to live, work and play.

The event is free for Chamber members and $10 for non-members. For more information, call Kristen Weaver, director of association wellness, at (828) 210-9658, e-mail, [email protected] or visit www.ymcawnc.org.

Asheville Tourists To Host ‘A Salute To Our Veterans’

Tuesday, June 30th, 2009

Asheville Tourists

ASHEVILLE, NC – July is the most patriotic time of the year, and the Asheville Tourists are joining in the celebration by recognizing our country’s greatest heroes. On Saturday, July 11, the Tourists will host "A Salute To Our Veterans" on Disabled American Veterans Night when the team takes on the Augusta GreenJackets at McCormick Field, beginning at 7:05 p.m.

A variety of activities will be held prior to and during the game, headlined by the appearance of former World Wrestling Entertainment heavyweight champion Sergeant Slaughter, sponsored by David’s Bedrooms. Fans will have a chance to take photos with and receive an autograph from the popular wrestler at the ballpark as well as at the David’s Bedrooms store on Biltmore Avenue from 3-5 p.m. on July 11. Those visiting the David’s Bedrooms during Sergeant Slaughter’s appearance will receive two free tickets to that night’s game.

The first 2,000 fans through the gates at McCormick Field will receive a free special edition Tourists baseball card team set, compliments of the Disabled American Veterans. WNC Blue Star Mothers and ABCCM Post 526 also will be collecting items for North Carolina troops currently stationed in Iraq and Afghanistan. Fans who donate three personal items, such as toothpaste, pens, nail clippers and dental floss, will receive a free general admission ticket to the game, thanks to 1-800-GOT-JUNK. A complete list of items can be found on the Tourists’ website – www.theashevilletourists.com. In addition, all veterans and active members of the military may purchase general admission tickets to the contest for $2 each.

Other events for the game include a pre-game recognition of veterans on the field. A color guard will be present, and a parachute team will deliver the American flag prior to the singing of the National Anthem.

"This upcoming homestand is the biggest of the season for the Tourists," said Mike Bauer, executive director of the Tourists and Palace Baseball. "We open with fireworks and we conclude it with our salute to the veterans. Baseball truly is the national pastime, and we’re looking forward to a special celebration with the help of the Disabled American Veterans and Sergeant Slaughter."

The Tourists will play a four-game series at Savannah this week prior to returning home on Saturday, July 4, for an eight-game homestand against the Charleston Riverdogs and Augusta GreenJackets. The homestand begins with the team’s annual Fireworks Extravaganza. For more information, call the Tourists’ front office at (828) 258-0428.

Asheville Tourists Win Thriller

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Asheville Tourists

ASHEVILLE, NC – The Asheville Tourists closed out their four-game series with the Greenville Drive in dramatic fashion Sunday afternoon, taking a back-and-forth contest 5-4 at McCormick Field. Jordan Pacheco drove in four runs for the Tourists, giving him ten RBI for the four-game series, and 47 on the year. Asheville starter Juan Nicasio pitched well enough to earn the win, but got his fourth no-decision instead.

The Drive opened the scoring in the top of the first when Zach Gentile led off with a base hit. Jered Stanley worked a one-out walk, and Ty Weeden drove a double into right field, plating Gentile for the first run of the game. Mitch Dening followed with a single of his own, bringing Stanley in to score and making it 2-0 Greenville.

Asheville answered back with a run in their half of the first, when Pacheco brought home Scott Robinson with a one-out single, cutting the Drive lead to 2-1. The Tourists pushed across another run to tie the game at 2-2 in the bottom of the third when Pacheco beat out a potential double play for an RBI fielder’s choice and his second run driven in of the game.

Nicasio worked four straight scoreless innings after the top of the first, finishing with 5.1 innings, allowing 2 runs on 4 hits and 3 walks while striking out 8 batters.

The Tourists took a 3-2 lead in the bottom of the sixth frame on an RBI sacrifice fly by Jimmy Cesario that scored David Christensen from third base.

Greenville tied it up at 3-3 in the top of the eighth inning against reliever Kurt Yacko on a sacrifice fly by first baseman Jered Stanley.

The Tourists brought in Tyler Trice to work the top of the ninth, and Trice retired the first two batters he faced before Ryan Dent blasted a solo homerun over the wall in left field to give the Drive a 4-3 lead.

Asheville came up in the bottom of the ninth trailing by a run, and Beau Seabury reached base to lead off on an error by pitcher Mike Lee. Carlos Martinez struck out, but Scott Robinson lined a single into center field, putting runners on first and second. Delta Cleary followed by drawing a walk to load the bases for the Tourists MVP, Pacheco, with one out. Pacheco waited on an off-speed pitch and blasted a line drive into the gap in right center for a walk-off, two-run single. Seabury and Robinson came around to score on the play, giving Asheville a series victory with a 5-4 win.

The Tourists (3-1) take on the Savannah Sand Gnats (2-1) in Savannah after an off day on Monday. Asheville will send RHP Dan Houston (2-6, 4.39) to the mound for game one in Savannah Tuesday night. You can listen to Tuesday’s game and all 140 Asheville Tourists games live on 100.7 WRES FM or streaming online at www.theashevilletourists.com.

Grove Park Inn Prepares for Centennial Celebration

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Grove Park Inn

ASHEVILLE, NC – The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa has begun a multi-phase renovation leading toward the Inn’s hundredth birthday celebration in 2013. Awarded to construction firm Wiss, Janney, Elstner & Associates of Duluth, GA, the project encompasses restoration of the Inn’s distinctive tiled roof to be completed between June 2009 and November 2010. WJE employees assigned to the project will live and work in the Asheville area, contributing to Western North Carolina’s economy.

Dedicated to preserving the iconic historical look and structural integrity of the property, hotel management has committed resources to restore the Inn’s main roof to the quality and specifications befitting the landmark property, which is on the National Register of Historic Places and a member of Historic Hotels of America.

Despite the project scope and timeline measures have been taken to ensure little to no effect on resort guests. "An important aspect of the project is the steps that have been taken to minimize the impact on GPI’s guests. The project is being completed in phases so that the entire Main Inn isn’t under scaffolding all at once. Additionally, the scaffolding being used on the Main Inn is spaced far enough apart to allow the guestrooms to maintain the beautiful mountain views that our guests know and love," said Jeff Bridgman Development Analyst in a recent interview.

For information on Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa go to: www.groveparkinn.com

Bele Chere Gets Back to Basics

Monday, June 29th, 2009

Bele Chere Festival

ASHEVILLE, NC – This year’s Bele Chere will certainly set a different tone than it has in recent memory. Over the years, the festival has grown beyond expectation, with some unforeseen consequences. Big name bands had headlined multiple stages with 25 dollar tickets, and last year the entertainment budget was nearly a quarter of a million dollars. Though the money was still pouring into downtown, Bele Chere had lost something that had made it unique to Asheville.

This year’s festivities will include fewer performers, shorter hours, and a greater emphasis on local bands and music. Despite the reductions, there are benefits to the truncated entertainment; it’s free. Not to mention, the budget will be less than half of what it was in 2008.

In an effort to redefine the festival, Asheville Parks and Recreation will be including 43 acts compared with last year’s 57. With a focus on local bands, including names like The Afromotive, Balsam Range, Sons of Ralph and David Holt and the Lightning Bolts, it would appear that the city is returning to the original mission of Bele Chere which was to promote local art and business. The festival will also be shutting down earlier, at 10 p.m., in an effort to coerce the crowds into downtown bars and restaurants.

The main stage on Lexington Ave. will become a drum circle. Two food courts will be set up. One at Pritchard Park and the Taste of Asheville will be setup around the Vance monument. The children’s area will be located in the Civic Center along the Senior’s Oasis in an effort to provide an air conditioned venue as well.

The line up is as follows:


Winner of the Last Band Standing contest, Nikki Talley, The Dirty Guv’nahs, Tennessee Hollow, The Afromotive, The Hip Abduction, Stephaniesid, The Two Man Gentlemen Band, Bull’s Gap

Headliners – Cracker, Freekbass, Dar Williams


Bayou Diesel, Hot Politics, Christabel & the Jons, Laura Blackley Band
Fusebox Funk, Charles Sayles, Highly Kind, Ras Allen, Mac Arnold & Plate Full O’Blues, WSNB, GFE, Sons of Ralph, Yo Mama’s Big Fat Booty Band, Delta Moon, Drew Holcombe & the Neighbors, David Holt & the Lightning Bolts.

Headliners – Colt Ford, Old 97’s.


Carolina Gator Gumbo, Skinny Legs & All, Jonathan Scales Fourchestra, Marsupials. Orleans, Webb Wilder & the Beatnecks, Brother Joscephus & the Love Revival Revolution Orchestra, Chuck Brodsky.

Asheville Touirsts Begin Second Half of Season with a Bang

Friday, June 26th, 2009

Asheville Tourists

ASHEVILLE, NC – The Tourists welcomed the Greenville Drive, champions of the Southern Division of the South Atlantic League for the first half of the season, for four games to begin the second half, winning a thriller Thursday night, 5-4. Jordan Pacheco blasted his eighth homerun of the year and Tyler Massey provided a huge two-run single in the bottom of the eighth inning to give the Tourists the lead for good. Asheville now has a record above .500 for the first time this season.

Greenville grabbed the lead right away on a solo homerun from Ryan Lavarnway, his eighth of the year, in the top of the first inning.

The Tourists answered right back in the bottom of the inning when Jimmy Cesario picked up an infield hit with one out, and Pacheco demolished a two-run shot over the tall wall in right-center field, giving Asheville a 2-1 lead.

The Drive came back with two runs of their own in the top of the second inning, banging out three consecutive one-out doubles. Oscar Tejeda and David Marks provided RBI two-baggers, putting Greenville ahead, 3-2.

Asheville drew even in the bottom of the third when Scott Robinson led off with a double down the left field line. Jimmy Cesario laid down a perfect sacrifice bunt that almost went for a hit, but Cesario was thrown out by a half step at first. Jordan Pacheco then followed by lifting a fly ball into left field, just deep enough to score Robinson from third. The sac fly was Pacheco’s third RBI of the game, and it tied the game at 3-3.

The score remained locked at 3-3 until the seventh frame, as Asheville starter Ethan Hollingsworth overcame some early trouble to keep the Tourists in the game. The righty went 6.1 innings, allowing four runs on nine hits while striking out eight in the no-decision. He came on to start the seventh inning before allowing a one-out walk to Oscar Tejeda and another RBI double to David Marks. After Marks gave Greenville a 4-3 lead, Hollingsworth was replaced by Robinson Fabian, who worked 1.2 scoreless innings out of the bullpen.

The Tourists came up in the bottom of the eighth trailing by a run against relief pitcher Felix Ventura. Cesario led things off with a base hit up the middle and took second on a passed ball by Lavarnway. After Pacheco grounded out to short for the first out, David Christensen picked up his second infield single of the game, putting runners on the corners. Greenville replaced Ventura with left-hander Lance McClain, but Christensen promptly stole second base to put runners on second and third, and Tyler Massey laced a two-run single into right field to give the Tourists a 5-4 lead.

Adam Jorgenson came on in the ninth and worked a scoreless inning to earn his eleventh save of the season.

The Tourists (1-0) and Drive (0-1) will meet again Friday night in game two of this four-game series. Asheville RHP Jonnathan Aristil (0-3, 4.95) will take the mound for game two, against Greenville LHP Nick Hagadone (0-1, 5.14). Tickets for Friday’s game and all Tourists home games are available by contacting the Tourists box office at (828) 258-0428. You can also listen to all 140 Asheville Tourists games live on 100.7 WRES FM or streaming online at www.theashevilletourists.com.

Celebrate the Art & Science of Birds at The NC Arboretum

Friday, June 26th, 2009

NC Arboretum

ASHEVILLE, NC – The North Carolina Arboretum celebrates the art and science of birds with "H. Douglas Pratt and John C. Sill’s BIRDS: The Science of Illustration," a new exhibit currently open at The Baker Exhibit Center.

In conjunction with the Arboretum’s celebration as an official part of the NC Birding Trail Guide, the exhibit explores how art and science work together in Pratt and Sill’s artistic illustrations of birds.

Pratt is an ornithologist, artist, and photographer as well as Research Curator of Birds at the NC State Museum of Natural Sciences in Raleigh. As a widely respected zoological illustrator, author and illustrator, Pratt has contributed to publications such as National Geographic Society’s Field Guide to the Birds of North America and the multi-volume Handbook of Birds of the World.

Sill has worked as a freelance artist and illustrator since 1971 and has been exhibited in highly acclaimed shows and appeared in a number of books and magazines. He has been the illustrator for the Massachusetts Audubon Society’s Bird Identification Calendar since the project began in 1980 and he is an instructor for the Institute for Field Ornithology sponsored by the American Birding Association.

Additional exhibit features include:

  • A bird nest collection, containing nests and egg replicas of local songbirds.
  • An interactive bird song display to test and instruct visitors on recognizing songbirds by vocalizations.
  • A habitat match-up interactive mural designed to teach concepts of animal needs and the distinct habitats of local birds in habitats that occur in WNC.
  • An illustration table with sketch paper, pencils, erasers and colored pencils.
    Discovery Packs containing binoculars for children to check out birds in the gardens are also available for families to enhance their exploration.

"H. Douglas Pratt and John C. Sill’s BIRDS: The Science of Illustration" runs through November 1 and is free for members or with parking admission ($6 per personal vehicle). For more information, call 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org.

Folkmoot Celebrates 26 Years, July 16 – 26

Friday, June 26th, 2009


ASHEVILLE, NC – Folkmoot USA, North Carolina’s Official International Festival, is a two-week celebration of the world’s cultural heritage through folk music and dance. Held each summer across the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina, Folkmoot features performances, parades and workshops by more than 350 performers from a dozen or so countries.

Performers demonstrate cultural heritage through colorful, authentic and original reproduction costumes, lively dance and beautiful music. During its 25-year history, over 200 folk groups from more than 100 countries have shared their heritage and culture at Folkmoot USA.

Countries expected to perform in 2009 include India, Serbia, Greece, Netherlands, Romania, Mexico, Kenya, Spain and Israel (updated 6/11/09). This year’s Folkmoot Festival takes place throughout Western North Carolina in the towns of Waynesville, Lake Junaluska, Maggie Valley, Canton, Clyde, Highlands, Bryson City, Cullowhee, Asheville, Columbus, Burnsville, Marion, Mars Hill, Flat Rock and Franklin.

Be sure to see the Folkmoot Festival Parade of Nations on Friday, July 17 at 1 pm and enjoy crafts and entertainment at International Festival Day on Saturday, July 25 from 10 am – 5 pm. Both events take place in downtown Waynesville.

The Folkmoot 5K Run/Walk and Kid’s Fun Run will take place on Saturday, July 18, at 8:00 am. Starting and ending at the Folkmoot Friendship Center, the 5K course is USATF Certified. Advance Registration: Adults $20; Children $8. Race Day Registration: Adults $25; Children $10. To register online, click on this link: http://www.setupevents.com To receive a registration form, call 828-452-2997 or stop by the Folkmoot Friendship Center. Hours are Monday – Friday, 9 am – 5 pm. (Open Saturday, 10 am – 3 pm in June & July and Sunday, 12 – 4 pm in July only.

Asheville’s Rose Hill Plantation Offering Single Family Homes in Green Community

Friday, June 26th, 2009

ASHEVILLE, NC – Rose Hill Plantation, Asheville’s first single family thoughtfully planned "Healthy Living Community," is bursting with green. A focal point of life at Rose Hill Plantation is the community garden which allows residents to choose a raised garden bed and grow their own vegetables, fruits and flowers. The garden plots are one of several sustainable features that support the community‚Äôs dedication to fostering an invigorating, healthy, and sustainable lifestyle for active adults. The homes are built to the Western North Carolina Green Building Council standards.

These are new homes in Asheville, NC. And additional green focused amenities include alternative power choices, rainwater collection programs, energy and resource efficient appliances, walking trails and dedicated areas with benches for bird watching, a Clubhouse including a fitness center, a swimming pool and spa, a media room and a tennis court, as well as a stocked lake for fishing. In addition, the community will feature a Healthy Living Manager to help plan community events and outreach programs.

For a limited time, ready to move-in two and three bedroom homes at Rose Hill Plantation, or new built homes are priced from $279,900 representing a price savings of 15% or more. In addition owners can enjoy a $5,000 move-in decorator allowance on any existing new built home.

For more information, the Sales Center at Rose Hill Plantation is now open and new homes and model homes may be previewed. The Clubhouse, swimming pool and spa, and walking trails are complete, and also under construction, scheduled for opening later this summer, is the tennis court and a unique "Green Showcase Model Home" where homebuyers can preview green friendly upgrades that can be added to any new home prior to construction. These upgrades are designed to enhance the healthy environment, contribute to energy cost savings and help reduce carbon emissions.

To visit Rose Hill Plantation call the sales office at: 828.337.2212 or register
www.rosehillplantation.net. The Sales Office is open seven days a week and is located at 3041 Leicester Hwy. (Hwy. 63) Leicester, NC 28748