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Asheville, North Carolina News

Archive for July, 2015

Watch for Me Pedestrian, Bicyclist Safety

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Asheville‘s multimodal mindset is one of its assets. But as we move toward environmentally and healthy practices of bicycling and walking to our destinations people sometimes find themselves in the crosshairs at motorist intersections.

Add to that equation the brisk tourist traffic and a vibrant busking scene in downtown Asheville. Sometimes our sidewalks appear to be spilling over.

Ensuring the safety of all parties moving around the City is why Asheville has joined the NCDOT’s Watch for Me NC pedestrian and bicyclist safety campaign. From August through November, the City will launch an intensive public education campaign that will then be paired with vigorous enforcement of pedestrian safety laws.

In a five-year period from 2008-2012, the City of Asheville had the highest pedestrian accident rate among the largest ten metro areas in the state, according to an NCDOT report. Our participation in Watch for Me NC is designed to reverse that trend.

The City’s Transportation and Police Departments plan to do that through a public education campaign and targeted law enforcement to educate and reinforce compliance with the laws.

The City’s Watch for Me campaign will kick off during National Night out, 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Aug. 4, at Pack Square Park. We will have a table at the event with informational materials.

The campaign coincides with the start of school in August so student pedestrian safety messages will be incorporated in the campaign.

How it will work
Tiered law enforcement will include a brief warning period, followed by active ticketing. In advance of the campaign launch, area traffic units received targeted training this month at A-B Tech. Buncombe County District Attorney Todd Williams is aware of the campaign and the charges it may bring.

Watch for Me logo

Know the laws

When you’re driving:

  • Yield to people in crosswalks.
  • Be prepared for bicyclists to take the whole lane – it’s their right if they need it.
  • Pass bicyclists only when it is safe to do so and be sure to give them plenty of room.

When you’re walking:

  • Obey all pedestrian traffic signals.
  • Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic and as far from the roadway as you can.
  • Look for cars in all directions before crossing a street or parking lot.

When you’re bicycling:

  • Obey all traffic signals and come to a full stop at “stop” signs and red lights.
  • Ride in the direction of traffic.
  • Use front and rear lights and reflectors at night.
  • Use hand signals to indicate when turning.

Find more safety tips at http://watchformenc.org. Look for additional safety educational materials in coming weeks from the City of Asheville. Most importantly, slow down and pay attention for safety, whether you are walking, bicycling or driving.

Experience Food, Wine and Fall Foliage at Biltmore

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – A mix of colorful outdoor beauty, wine appreciation and sumptuous culinary offerings populate Biltmore’s fall calendar starting in September.

Biltmore’s autumn landscape presents a prime opportunity for fans of changing leaf color. In addition to tours through the 250-room Biltmore House, “leaf-peepers” can explore the estate’s mum-filled gardens; miles of hiking and biking trails; craft demonstrations and friendly farm animals at Antler Hill Farm. Guided outdoor experiences include horseback riding, Segway tours, sporting clays, fly fishing, the Land Rover Driving School and river float trips. No matter your selection of activities, Biltmore’s panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains makes for an ideal immersion in vivid fall color.

“Taste of Biltmore” in September

This September, food and wine takes center stage as we celebrate NC Wine Month with “Taste of Biltmore.” Interactive culinary events showcasing the estate’s winemakers, chefs and farmers  include tours, demos, tasting events and grand dinners. Beginning August 1, find the complete event schedule online and make advance reservations.

• Tours
Go behind-the-vine with complimentary and exclusive winery experiences, such as the Vineyard Tour which takes guests to the estate’s vineyard to sample wines and learn about Biltmore’s North Carolina grape-growing and winemaking program. Also available is the Winery Production Tour for a behind-the-scenes peek at production areas, including fermentation and barrel rooms, along with the bottling line. Guests will discover how our award-winning wines make the journey from the grape into the glass. Reservations required for select events.

• Demos
Guests can stop by an Artisan Food Tent in Antler Hill Village for tips, insights and quick demos of the season’s bounty. Complimentary, hands-on chef’s workshops are being offered on various topics such as handmade pasta and fresh sauces using estate tomatoes, and professional grilling techniques with tips on marinades and grilling meats and vegetables, highlighting estate-raised beef, lamb and freshly harvested produce. Reservations required for select events.

• Tastes
Savor Biltmore’s handcrafted wines with multiple complimentary or a la carte tastings. Enjoy regular Village Wine Strolls including estate wine paired with small plates. Taste and compare different oyster varieties from coast-to-coast along with sparkling and white wine during a special Oysters, Sparkling & White Wine event with Chef Mark DeMarco and Winemaker Sharon Fenchak. Reservations required for select events.

• Feasts
Signature feasts are being hosted in beautiful outdoor locations throughout the estate in many sites where guests have never visited. On Sept. 12, Biltmore will host a Moveable Feast wine dinner on Dry Cow Hill. Estate Chefs Kirk Fiore and Paul Klaassen, along with Winemaker Bernard Delille, will prepare a multicourse dinner including wine pairings. A Beermaker’s Dinner on Sept. 19 features a collaboration between Biltmore Chef Mark DeMarco and Master Brewer Oscar Wong of Highland Brewing Company. On Sept. 25, meet and greet with Biltmore’s winemakers, chefs and farmers at the Taste of Biltmore Grand Finale: A Roaming Tasting, featuring chef-manned stations with Biltmore wines and Biltmore Cedric’s beer pairings, as well as live music. Reservations required.

Live After Five

On Friday and Saturday evenings starting at 5 p.m., Biltmore hosts Live After Five in Antler Hill Village with live music on the Village bandstand. Families will enjoy the nearby farm, where kids can run off energy, play at Pisgah Playground and visit with the farm’s friendly resident goats, chickens, horses, sheep and other small animals.

Fall and Halloween at Inn on Biltmore Estate

The Inn on Biltmore Estate is offering specials throughout the fall season. Call 866-336-1245 or book online at www.biltmore.com/stay.

Labor Day Celebration Package (Sept. 5-7): Includes celebration dinner at Antler Hill Barn with live music, games, a bonfire and fireworks.

Fall Celebration Package (Oct. 30-Nov. 1): Coinciding with the Inn’s Halloween Weekend, this package includes dinner at Antler Hill Barn with live music, games and a bonfire on Oct. 31. Additional Halloween activities during the weekend include a pumpkin carving contest (the winner receives a two-night stay next year on the same weekend) and the “lighting of the pumpkins” on the Grand Terrace. A candy bar in the Inn’s lobby will offer Halloween treats.

Fall travel deals at Biltmore

Save $10 on daytime admission if tickets are purchased online seven days or more prior to visiting. Book within six days of visiting and save $5. Children ages nine and younger are FREE. Youth ages 10 to 16 are half-off the adult admission price beginning Sept. 8. Visit www.biltmore.com for more information.

WCU Mainstage Season Tickets

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Two plays and two musicals comprise the 2015-16 Mainstage season to be presented by Western Carolina University’s School of Stage and Screen, and season subscriptions and individual tickets for the productions will go on sale Wednesday, Aug. 5, at the box office in WCU’s John W. Bardo Fine and Performing Arts Center.

“The 2015-16 Mainstage season is enormously exciting, diverse and challenging for both our students and our audience,” said Jayme McGhan, director of the School of Stage and Screen. “Split between two classics of the stage and two brand new works, this season will tell the stories of iconic American artists, hysterical ghostly encounters, the power of Shakespeare’s words and the nature of show business itself.”

The season opens with “Pop! Who Shot Andy Warhol?,” a musical comedy mystery possibly inspired by an actual event and written/composed by Maggie-Kate Coleman and Anna K. Jacobs. Every character is a suspect, including the iconic pop art icon himself and all his “Factory” denizens, as they sort out the answer to the subtitle’s question through a score infused with popular music grooves and punctuated by the sound that a gun makes.

Show times are 7:30 p.m. Thursday through Saturday, Oct. 1-3, and at 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3, at Hoey Auditorium.

The classic Noel Coward comedy “Blithe Spirit” describes the conflict when mystery writer Charles Condomine accidently brings his dead wife back into an earthly sphere while researching a new book. Then his ghostly wife attempts to lure him away from his new wife and into the afterlife with her.

“Blithe Spirit” will be performed at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 18, through Saturday, Nov. 21, and at a 3 p.m. matinee Sunday, Nov. 22, in Hoey Auditorium.

In a women’s juvenile detention center in Tennessee, the inmates are staging a production of Shakespeare’s classic tragedy in “Macbeth is the New Black.”  What’s happening in the detention center begins to mirror the secrecy and violence in the play, and the results are vicious.

With original material by Linda Parsons Marion, this updating of “Macbeth” will take the stage of Hoey Auditorium at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 17, through Saturday, Feb. 20.

“Gypsy,” a musical loosely based on the memoirs of Gypsy Rose Lee, will be presented in the Bardo Arts Center at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, April 14, through Saturday, April 16, and at a 3 p.m. matinee on Sunday, April 17.

This musical fable about family and show business depicts Mama Rose propelling her younger daughter June toward a successful vaudeville career. After June elopes, Mama turns all her attention on her older, less talented daughter, Louise. As the vaudeville era fades, Louise ends up blossoming in its seedier version: burlesque.

In addition to the Mainstage season, the School of Stage and Screen hosts special events during the academic year, including a new series named in honor of an accomplished playwright and screen writer who taught at WCU for 20 years.

“The School of Stage and Screen at Western Carolina University is committed to helping develop new works for the American stage,” McGhan said. “We’re proud to announce the launch of the Josefina Niggli New Works Reading Series, which will feature musicals and plays from both our own faculty members and regional and national playwrights. We’ll begin the Josefina Niggli Series with an award-winning new musical, ‘Resident Alien,’ by Katya Stanislavskya, musical theatre program director. Students will have the wonderful opportunity to work with the playwright, helping them to develop these scripts for future full production.”

The Josefina Niggli New Works Series will present two events, “Resident Alien,” at 7:30 p.m., Saturday, Oct. 31, and another, which will be announced later, at 7:30 p.m., Sunday, March 13, both in the Niggli Theatre of the Stillwell Building. There will be no admission charge, but a $5 donation at the door will be welcome.

The annual Controlled Chaos Film Festival will screen the best movies created by the year’s Film and Television Production Program students on Friday, April 29, in the Bardo Arts Center. Tickets will be $10 at the door.

Season tickets for the two musicals and two dramas are $50 for adults; $40 for senior citizens, faculty and staff; and $20 for students – a 30 percent savings on individual event prices.

Single event tickets for the musicals are $21 for adults; $15 for senior citizens, faculty and staff; and for students, $10 day of show or $7 in advance. Single event tickets for “Blithe Spirit” and “Macbeth is the New Black” will be $16 for adults; $11 for senior citizens, faculty and staff; and for students, $10 day of show or $7 in advance.

For more information about the Mainstage season and special events, contact WCU’s School of Stage and Screen at 828-227-7491. To order season subscriptions and individual tickets, call the Bardo Arts Center box office at 828-227-2479 or go online to bardoartscenter.wcu.edu.


88th Annual Mountain Dance and Folk Festival

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – The Mountain Dance and Folk Festival, the country’s longest running folk festival, now in its 88th year of highlighting mountain culture, returns this summer for three full evenings: Thursday, Friday and Saturday, August 6, 7 and 8 at the Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville. Tickets are on sale now.

With introductions beginning at 6:50 p.m. and the show beginning at 7:00 p.m. nightly, the festival formally showcases an amazing repertoire of mountain performers – old-timers as well as the newest generation of bluegrass and mountain string bands, ballad singers, big circle mountain dancers and cloggers – who share music and dance that echo centuries of Scottish, English, Irish, Cherokee and African heritage. The festival begins Thursday, August 6 with Hometown Appreciation Night. In keeping with the grassroots flavor of the festival, local families and individuals are encouraged to attend to help kick off the first night of the festival.


Audiences at each of the three performances will see an extensive line-up of the cream-of-the-crop musicians, ballad singers and dancers; each evening features at least four dance teams from the very young to the young at heart. The popular and long-standing house band, the Stoney Creek Boys, returns to perform each evening. And each night of the festival features both well-known musicians and new talent alike, representative of the Southern Appalachian Mountains and its continuing traditions.


Proceeds from ticket sales for the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival help to cover the costs of the eight Shindig on the Green events each summer, including goods and services such as sound equipment and technicians. These operating costs average several thousand dollars per Shindig evening. The Folk Heritage CommitteeTM produces Shindig on the GreenTM and the Mountain Dance and Folk FestivalTM in order to support the preservation and continuation of the traditional music, dance and storytelling heritage of the Southern Appalachian Mountains.

2015 Mountain Dance and Folk Festival Performance Schedule

(Line-up subject to change. Check www.dwtheatre.com for updated line-up.)

Thursday, August 6: Carol Rifkin and Jerry Sutton, Masters of Ceremonies; Introduction by Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Fines Creek Cloggers; Betty Smith; Buncombe Turnpike; Roger Howell and Friends; Sons of Ralph; Don Pedi; Dance Team: Folk Heritage Smooth Dancers; Dance Team: Stoney Creek Cloggers; Carol Rifkin, Jeanette Queen & John Fowler; The Peg Twisters; Spirit Fiddle; Dance Team: Green Valley Cloggers; Clearwater Connection; Dance Team: J Creek Cloggers; Whitewater Bluegrass Company.

Friday, August 7: Laura Boosinger and Kevin Hamlin, Masters of Ceremonies; Introduction by Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Cole Mountain Cloggers; Richard Hurley; Spirit Fiddle; Appalachian Consort; Joe Penland; Dance Team: Dixie Darlins Cloggers; Denise O’Sullivan; Bobby Hicks; Maggie Lauterer and Zack Allen; Gabriel’s Creek; Dance Team: Appalachian Mountaineers Cloggers; Laura Boosinger; The Buckner Family; Dance Team: Blue Ridge Heritage Cloggers; New Broad River Band.

Saturday, August 8: Glenn Bannerman and Richard Hurley, Masters of Ceremonies; Introduction by Ed Herron; Grey Eagle (Stoney Creek Boys with buck dancers); Dance Team: Mountain Tradition Cloggers; The Ross Brothers; Bryce Parham and Kathryn Brickey; Dance Team: Bailey Mountain Smooth Dancers; Phil and Gaye Johnson; Crooked Pine; Dance Team: Bannerman Family and Friends; Dance Team: Southern Mountain Fire Cloggers; The Griggs; Southern Highlanders; Bobby Anderson and Blue Ridge Tradition; The Trantham Family; Dance Team: Bailey Mountain Cloggers; The Waymasters; Spirit Fiddle; Bearwallow.

Parking:  Festival patrons can park off-street, at the parking garage on Biltmore Avenue – which also provides wheelchair access to the Festival – or at the various parking garages located throughout downtown Asheville.

The Mountain Dance and Folk Festival is presented by Asheville’s Folk Heritage Committee which also produces its sister event, the 49th Annual Shindig on the GreenTM, a free gathering held each year at Pack Square Park on the Bascom Lamar Lunsford stage, with a stage show and informal jam sessions on Saturday evenings – remaining Shindig events in 2015 are on August 15, 22, 29; and September 5. Both events rely on the generosity and shared talent of the region’s finest old-time musicians and mountain dancers, as well as the all-volunteer Folk Heritage Committee and corporate and individual donors.

Raffle: The much-sought-after annual raffle items for the 2015 Shindig season are: a historic dulcimer handcrafted by celebrated Western North Carolina woodworker, James David Sams, mounted in a beautiful display frame by Blackbird Frame & Art and accompanied by an antique turkey quill used by renowned balladeer and dulcimer player, Virgil Sturgill – both dulcimer and quill may be removed for playing – valued at $1,500; and a 66” x 86” handmade twin-size quilt, featuring Sheepfold blocks set on point in a variety of red and cream fabrics and finished with heirloom-quality machine quilting, created by local quilting collaborative, Mountain Jam Circle – valued at $850. Raffle tickets are available at each Mountain Dance and Folk Festival evening and all eight Shindig on the Green evenings, and the winning tickets are pulled during the final Shindig on the Green on Saturday, September 5.

Sponsors: The Folk Heritage Committee produces Shindig on the Green’s 49th Summer Season and the 88th Annual Mountain Dance and Folk Festival with support from the following Corporate Sponsors: Acoustic Corner; Acoustic Sound Production; Alan’s Jewelry & Pawn; Americare Pharmacy Consultants; Asheville Citizen-Times; Biltmore®; Brian C. Hunter, CPA, P.A.; City Bakery; CWS – Consolidated Waste Services; Deutsch & Gottschalk, PA; Elly Wells Marketing + Project Management; Fox Dental Associates; Graybeard Graphics; Greybeard Realty; Henco Reprographics; Lenoir-Rhyne University; Luella’s Bar-B-Que; Mast General Store; Mission Health; Mountain Jam Circle; Okie Dokies Smokehouse; Pack’s Tavern; Parsec Financial; RomanticAsheville.com Vacation Guide; Shay Brown Events; Skyland Auto Group; State Farm Insurance – Diane Bauknight; Telco Community Credit Union; Togar Rugs; Town Hardware & General Store; and Yesterday Spaces. Media Sponsors are: 880 AM The Revolution; 88.7 FM WNCW; 99.9 FM Kiss Country; The Laurel of Asheville; Mountain Xpress; News Radio 570 WWNC; Rapid River Magazine; Smoky Mountain Living; Smoky Mountain News; and WNC magazine. Ongoing support of Shindig on the Green is provided by the Asheville Area Chamber of Commerce, the City of Asheville, and Buncombe County.

Ticket Information: Tickets (Regular $22; Children 12 and under $12; Groups of 10 or more $17 per person; 3-night package $54 for adults and $24 for children) for the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival are available from the Diana Wortham Theatre box office: (828) 257-4530 or online at www.dwtheatre.com/mountain-dance-and-folk-festival-2015.  For more information on the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival or Shindig on the Green, visit www.folkheritage.org or call the Folk Heritage Info Line: (828) 258-6101 x345.

First Annual Downtown LEAF Aug 1-2

Thursday, July 30th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – LEAF Downtown AVL inaugural weekend this weekend August 1 12 – 10 pm and Aug 2 10 am – 6 pm. This FREE event will take place in Pack Square Park downtown Asheville.  Enjoy this family festival with LEAF Family Adventure Zone, Literary Lounge, Easel Rider, and more!  Saturday morning at 9 am is LEAF’s 5K Run.

90+ local vendors, music, art, creativity abound this weekend.

After 20 years of producing WNC’s #1 Music Festival, #1 Festival for Camping and #1 Festival for Kids, LEAF Community Arts (LEAF) is proud to announce the first Annual LEAF Downtown AVL taking place August 1st and 2nd in Pack Square Park. The two-day event will bring the best of LEAF Festival and the best of LEAF Schools & Streets together for a diverse, welcoming event open and free to families and locals of Western NC and beyond.

LEAF Downtown AVL aims to celebrate communities, creativity, diversity and families in the heart of Asheville, NC. The long-term vision is to build quality of place by intentionally infusing the power of the arts, culture and creativity. LEAF Downtown AVL will further the goals of inclusivity, community partnerships and economic vitality in the greater Asheville area while driving the greater LEAF mission to connect cultures and create community through music and arts. “LEAF is celebrating its 20th this year!, states Jennifer Pickering, Executive Director of LEAF Community Arts. “What better way to acknowledge all that we’ve achieved than by bringing the best of LEAF Festival and the best of LEAF Schools & Streets to Downtown Asheville?! This is a family-friendly event that will be inclusive of the diversity and heritage found in right in our backyard. ALL are welcome!”

The weeks leading into LEAF Downtown AVL, LEAF will host the LEAF Arts & Park Camp July 20-24 & July 27- 31 at Wesley Grant Center and the first ever Bootsy Collins Funk Dynasty Camp at Lake Eden July 27th-31st. The participants in the Funk Dynasty Camp will be showcased at New Mountain AVL on July 31st for their finale performance after spending the day with Bootsy Collins himself to raise their FUNK-o-meter! At LEAF Downtown AVL, Bootsy Collins and the Rubber Band will headline on the LEAF Downtown AVL Stage August 1st at 8:15pm. Other confirmed acts performing on the LEAF Downtown AVL Stage, in LEAF Café or on the Community Arts Stage include Sister Sparrow & The Dirty Birds, The Main Squeeze, Empire Strikes Brass, The London Souls and many more! In addition to dynamic performances, Pack Square Park will come alive with The Easel Rider, Family Adventure Zone, Healing Arts, Roaming Artists, Prestige Subaru Adventure Zone and we encourage you to “Run Your Ash Off” with us in the LEAF Art Dash 5k Run & Family Relay on August 1st. LEAF has partnered with the Asheville-based SuperFly Fabulous Events to plan, implement and manage the run. “We are thrilled to work with LEAF on the development of this fun racing concept. For the last six years, we’ve developed more than a dozen events from Tennessee to Colorado. It’s exciting to be working on our home turf on an event that has such potential for the city’s downtown,” said Stephanie Carson, Director of SuperFly Fabulous Events.

The growing list of Sponsors already includes Capital at Play, Asheville-Citizen Times, Harmony Motors, Prestige Subaru, WNC Magazine and French Broad Food Co-Op. Current community partners in the endeavor include City of Asheville, AVL Downtown Association, N.C. Arts Council, Date My City, Green Opportunities, Delta House Life Development of AVL, Eagle Market Streets Development Corporation and BLOCK-by-BLOCK Industries. Asheville Grown will serve as a primary partner in qualifying 80+ locally-owned businesses and vendors offering their services and products at the event.

Follow the conversation about this and updated announcements on Facebook or Twitter at #LEAFDowntownAVL. To find out details about LEAF Downtown AVL and other LEAF Local Events, visit http://www.theLEAF.org/local.


Buy Fresh at a Tailgate Market!

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Did you know that Buncombe County has 13 tailgate markets to buy fresh, from-the-farm produce? Instead of a grocery store, shop directly from the source for everything from fruit, vegetables, mountain crafts, jams, jellies, preserves, honey, fresh baked goods, cookies, and much more!

Here are the 13 locations:

Asheville Street Resurfacing Projects

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – The resurfacing schedule for 12 Asheville streets has been nailed down (though it could change due to weather and other factors). City Council approved this year’s paving contracts at its June 23 meeting and now the work has begun.

Rogers Group out of Nashville, Tenn., is the contractor on this year’s street resurfacing projects.

How are streets chosen? Among other criteria such as maintenance records and average daily traffic, they get a grade, said Public Works Director Greg Shuler. Much like scores for school grades, streets are rated between 0 to 100.  Roads are selected for resurfacing based on their pavement condition rating, or PCR. The average for Asheville’s streets is a 52, so “you can see we have a lot of work to do,” said Shuler.

The work will be done July through November, weather permitting. That includes work on short but heavily traveled stretches of Patton and Lexington avenues downtown.
Patton Avenue is slated for resurfacing from College Street to Biltmore Avenue, right past Pritchard Park. A shorter portion of Lexington Avenue will be resurfaced, from College Street to Patton Avenue.
How will this affect traffic?
There will be lane closures and “we are paving Patton and Lexington at night,” according to Capital Projects Management Divisions’ Robert Kun.

Work has already started on two streets, Onteora Boulevard and East School Road in the Oakely area. Here’s the projected paving schedule for the rest of the streets targeted for this year:

South Oak Forest Drive: July 30-Aug. 12

Ballantree Drive: Aug. 7-27

Patton and Lexington avenues: Aug. 18-Sept. 15

Covington Street: Aug. 24-Sept. 30

Shiloh Road: Aug. 26-Sept. 22

Wellington Street: Sept. 4-Oct. 24

Keheler and Sone Alley: Oct. 5-24

Spears Ave: Oct. 20-Nov. 05

Where does the money come from for road resurfacing? It is set aside from the City’s Capital Improvement Plan.

Red Moon Road at Diana Wortham Theatre

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Inspired by the great outdoors of Nova Scotia, Red Moon Road is Canada’s most endearing acoustic folk trio. Drop-dead gorgeous vocals from lead singer Sheena Rattai and brilliant performances on banjo, mandolin, and guitar help contribute to the group’s energetic sound. Flush with charm and wisdom, the three musicians effortlessly blend immaculate songwriting and finely honed musical skills. From living rooms to folk fest stages, the three have charmed fans from coast to coast. Their lush and lively take on modern roots is peppered with bright stage banter, exquisite harmonies, and masterfully told stories that make for a delightful evening.

Tickets: Regular $32; Student $27; Child $20

Lewis Hine Photo Exhibit Child Labor of 100 Years Ago

Saturday, July 25th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Many of the children look older than their years in photographs captured by Lewis Hine a century ago in the mill villages of Cabarrus, Gaston, Lincoln, Rowan and other North Carolina counties.

The photographs are part of a new exhibit, “The Photography of Lewis Hine: Exposing Child Labor in North Carolina, 1908-1918,” now showing at the Mountain Heritage Center in Hunter Library of Western Carolina University through Dec. 11.

Hine captured the harsh realities of life for the young textile workers, showing girls operating warping machines and boys covered in lint after long hours as mill sweepers. In 1908, the National Child Labor Committee hired Hine to document the working conditions of young workers across the United States. That same year, he began visiting North Carolina’s textile mills, where about a quarter of all workers were under age 16.

Hine’s photos soon appeared in magazines and on posters the NCLC displayed at conferences, legislative hearings and other gatherings. In 1910, North Carolina strengthened child labor laws, and the first federal child labor laws were passed in 1916. Hine returned to North Carolina a number of times to document whether mill owners were following the laws. His photographs and interviews present compelling information about child labor within the state.

The exhibit is on loan from the North Carolina Museum of History. It is free and open to the public, on display in Hunter Library’s second floor lobby from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday For more information or directions, call (828) 227-7129 or visit mhc.wcu.edu.

The Mountain Heritage Center has moved to Hunter Library temporarily as components of a campus master plan are implemented over the next several years.

Kimberly Avenue Pedestrian Enhancement

Monday, July 20th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Drivers heading down Kimberly Avenue will encounter a new stop sign at Hampstead Road, recently installed as part of a pedestrian enhancement. Walkers and joggers crossing at Hampstead Road will notice wide crosswalk margins painted on the roadway at all four points of the intersection.

Overall pedestrian and multimodal safety along Kimberly Avenue was the focus of this project. The City considered several factors before deciding that an all-way stop control should be added to this intersection.

The intersection itself is very wide as people cross Hampstead on the west side of Kimberly.  The wide crossing causes pedestrians to be exposed to traffic longer. Part of this ongoing project is geared towards changing the western approach to create a narrower footprint.

Speeding motorists along the stretch was also a factor. Pedestrians attempting to cross Kimberly Avenue are faced with vehicles that are often exceeding the speed limit. That’s because Kimberly Avenue has become an alternative to Merrimon Avenue. The volume of traffic as well as the number of drivers documented as exceeding the speed limit, particularly at the Hampstead Road intersection, caused the City to look closely at ways to slow the traffic. Although the posted speed limit is 25 mph, 85% of drivers have been documented as going an average of 38 mph. The all-way stop signs are intended to make the crossing safer by forcing vehicles to stop so that pedestrians can cross without having to judge the vehicle’s speed.

Pedestrian and multimodal safety is the focus of an upcoming campaign the City will launch in August.
The City of Asheville has one of the highest per capita pedestrian/vehicular collision rates in North Carolina. With the goal of reducing this rate, Asheville is joining the Watch For Me NC campaign by promoting enforcement and education from August to November. Look for more information soon.