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Asheville Symphony Presents Holst’s Orchestral Suite The Planets

Saturday, November 7th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Gustav Holst’s always popular and captivating orchestral suite The Planets is the featured work on a program of sonic masterpieces as the Asheville Symphony performs its third concert of the season Saturday, November 21.

The musicians of the Asheville Symphony Orchestra will have a chance to shine during both Holst’s ode to the cosmos and Haydn’s Sinfonia concertante, Op. 84, which will be the opening piece on the program under the direction of ASO Music Director and Conductor Daniel Meyer. The concert will begin at 8 p.m. at Thomas Wolfe Auditorium.

The Planets requires the use of a large orchestra – one of the largest that ASO audiences will hear this season – to reflect Holst’s fascination with the scope of our solar system. Each planet, with the exceptions of Earth and Pluto (which at the time Holst composed the work 100 years ago had yet to be classified and then de-classified as a planet) is portrayed in the suite.

“Holst devised an orchestral suite with imaginative musical portraits of the planets, from Mars, the Bringer of War to Neptune, the Mystic, in astounding sonic renderings using a massive orchestra,”

Meyer said.

For its monthly program, the Asheville Symphony Guild will host Meyer and astronomer Bernard Arghiere for a discussion about The Planets – both the musical work and the planets themselves – starting at 10 a.m. on Thursday, Nov. 19, at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church in Asheville. The program is free and open to the public.

Haydn’s Sinfonia concertante, Op. 84, which was composed as a unique quartet with orchestra, features concertmaster Jason Posnock, principal oboe Alicia Chapman, interim principal cello Franklin Keel, and principal bassoon Michael Burns.

“Haydn sought to exploit the sonic characteristics of the solo violin, oboe, cello, and bassoon in a concerto,” said Meyer. “Stepping into the spotlight, our own principals will take the solos while the musicians of the ASO provide the charm and zest that makes Haydn’s music so joyous.”

Single tickets for all concerts are $22 – $62 depending on seating section; reduced youth pricing is available. Single tickets and season ticket packages can be purchased at www.ashevillesymphony.org, by calling 828-254-7046, or in person at the U.S. Cellular Center box office at 87 Haywood Street.

The Asheville Symphony Orchestra performs and promotes symphonic music for the benefit, enjoyment and education of the people of Western North Carolina. The ASO presents concerts in the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium in Asheville’s U.S. Cellular Center. Related organizations include the Asheville Symphony Guild, Asheville Symphony Chorus, Asheville Symphonettes, and education initiatives such as the Asheville Buncombe Youth Orchestra, Music in the Schools, MusicWorks!, Spotlight on Young Musicians, Symphony Talk and pre-concert lectures.

Masterworks 3


November 21, 2015 • 8 p.m.

Thomas Wolfe Auditorium

Daniel Meyer, conductor

Haydn                   Sinfonia concertante, Op. 84

Holst                   The Planets

Asheville Housing Fair Sept 19

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – The City of Asheville and Land of the Sky Association of REALTORS announce the 2015 Asheville Housing Fair to take place from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. September 19 at the Stephens Lee Center, 30 George Washington Carver Ave. The event is free and open to the public and will guide consumers and homeowners through a myriad of questions surrounding credit, renting, vacation rentals and more.

Representatives from more than 20 nonprofit organizations and associations will be on site to provide information and one-on-one assistance to persons seeking to learn more about affordable housing options.

A series of workshops will be held throughout the event. The workshop schedule includes:

– Living in 120 Square Feet – Life in a Tiny Home

– Learn Your Rights as a Renter

– Credit: Get It. Keep It. Improve It

– The ABCs of Home Buying

– What is an Accessory Dwelling Unit?

– Homestays

– Landlords are Part of the Solution

– Everything You Wanted to Know About Affordable Housing

A tiny home exhibition will be on display in the Stephens Lee Center parking lot. Two Tiny Homes will be on display.

The Asheville Housing Fair will be family friendly with a playground and toddler bouncy house on site. There will be a free hot dog lunch provided by the Land of the Sky Association of REALTORS®.

A complete list of participating organizations and a full workshop schedule can be found on the event website, ashevillehousingfair.com. Event information is also available by phone, at 828-259-5728, or by emailing [email protected]

About the City of Asheville:

The City of Asheville strives to provide the highest quality and most efficient municipal services possible. The City serves a population of 87,000 people with services ranging from public safety to economic development, parks & recreation, water resources and more. Find detailed information at ashevillenc.gov.

About the Land of the Sky Association of REALTORS®

The Land of the Sky Association of REALTORS® (LOTSAR) is the longest running REALTOR® association in North Carolina. LOTSAR’s mission is to enhance our members to exceed, to foster high ethical standards, to promote private property rights, and to be the voice of home ownership. The Land of the Sky Association of REALTORS® is located at 37 Montford Ave, Asheville, NC 28801.

New Disc Golf Course

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – The WNC Disc Golf Association has used their expertise and extensive volunteer hours to plan and install a full 18 hole disc golf course at the Buncombe County Sports Park.

The course offers a number of diverse and challenging holes that allows golfers to test their skills while enjoying one of Buncombe County’s premier recreational facilities.

To learn more about the WNC Disc Golf Association visit their Facebook site.

Wiley Cash Named Writer-in-Residence UNC Asheville

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Wiley Cash, UNC Asheville graduate and author of two best-selling novels, will return to his alma mater to teach courses and mentor students as writer-in-residence for the 2016-17 academic year.

“Since graduating in 2000, I’ve taken every opportunity to return to UNC Asheville, whether it be as a member of the National Alumni Council or as the speaker at the 2015 May Commencement, but I never imagined that I’d be able to return as writer-in-residence,” said Cash. “It’s an honor to have the chance to work with such intelligent, creative students alongside literature and language faculty members I’ve so long admired.”

“We look forward to bringing Wiley back to the classroom, where he’ll work and write side-by-side with our students, encouraging them to find their voices as writers and as community citizens,” said UNC Asheville Chancellor Mary K. Grant. “His ability to capture the character of Western North Carolina – an ability which stems from his own undergraduate study of literature and Appalachian history here – will also offer meaningful opportunities for the community to engage in the literature that tells our shared story.”

Cash’s first novel, A Land More Kind than Home (William Morrow, 2012), set in Madison County,  reached The New York Times best-seller list in hardcover, paperback and e-book. It won the Western North Carolina Historical Association’s Thomas Wolfe Memorial Literary Award, the Appalachian Writers’ Association’s Book of the Year award, and was named a finalist for the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize.

He followed that success with This Dark Road to Mercy (William Morrow, 2014), a national best-seller which was optioned for film and became a finalist for the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award. The novel was an Indie Next Pick, an Okra Pick by the Southern Independent Bookseller Alliance, a LibraryReads selection and an Amazon Book of the Month.

Cash earned a master’s degree at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro, a Ph.D. at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette and received an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree from UNC Asheville at the university’s May 2015 Commencement. He also returned to campus in 2013 to offer a reading as the Goodman Endowed Visiting Artist.

Cash says he will use the writer-in-residence position to help introduce other high-profile authors to students and the community. “One aspect of the position I’m really excited about is the responsibility of organizing a reading series that will bring best-selling and award-winning poets and prose writers to campus,” said Cash. “I’m devoted to introducing students to successful authors who are talented, accessible, collegial and kind.”

“Wiley Cash is among the strongest voices in a new generation of American writers to emerge from the rich literary landscape of the South,” said UNC Asheville Provost Joe Urgo. “He is also the product of a UNC Asheville education, and we are pleased to welcome him home. Wiley will invigorate an already superb creative writing program at Asheville, adding to the resources we offer our students whose creative lives are now in the process of taking shape and direction.”

Cash will take his position as UNC Asheville writer-in-residence at the start of the fall 2016 semester.



Birders “Flock to the Rock” Fall Migration

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Chimney Rock is known for its colorful fall and stunning 75-mile views overlooking Lake Lure, but the Park is also a well-known destination for year-round birding. Birding enthusiasts often visit the Park to look for birds such as warblers, vireos and Peregrine Falcons. The region’s premier fall migration birding event, Flock to the Rock, hosted by Chimney Rock for the past six years, has brought more attention to the Park’s abundant birding opportunities. Flock to the Rock will be held on Saturday, September 19. This prime birding weekend coincides with the annual hawk migration when dozens, sometimes hundreds, of hawks can be seen during their flight south.

The weekend is packed full of bird walks guided by Park naturalists, including a Naturalist Niche: Early Bird Walk from 7:30-9:30am and educational birding activities for families, live bird programs and a hawk count at the top of Chimney Rock. Special to the event are Wings to Soar Birds in Flight shows in the Indoor Classroom on the Meadows.

“Chimney Rock is one of the most spectacular locations in Western North Carolina to spot a wide range of birds throughout the year, from countless warblers and vireos to tanagers and birds of prey. Flock to the Rock is held during the peak of fall migration and draws enthusiastic birders of all levels to the Park,” said Emily Walker, Chimney Rock Management, LLC Education Manager.

Flock to the Rock is included with paid Park admission, which is $13 for adults, $6 for youth (ages 5-15) and free for kids 4 years and under. An additional fee applies only to the Naturalist Niche: Early Bird Walk, which requires advance registration. Chimney Rock is an official site on the N.C. Birding Trail. For more details and a schedule of birding activities, visit http://www.chimneyrockpark.com/events/event_detail.php?EVENT_ID=394.

A Premier Birding Destination

From its winding riverbanks to its dramatic cliffs, Chimney Rock is a haven for North Carolina resident birds, migrating birds and, of course, bird lovers. From beginner to experienced, people have long been flocking to the Rock to catch glimpses of their favorite birds. Chimney Rock is home to more than 130 species of birds throughout the year, including over 25 warbler species, vireos, tanagers, woodpeckers, thrushes, owls and a wide selection of birds of prey, including Peregrine Falcons. For more information on birding at the Park, visit chimneyrockpark.com/park/nature/northcarolinabirds.php.

Home to World’s Fastest Bird of Prey

While at Chimney Rock, train your binoculars along the Park’s soaring cliffs and up into the surrounding sky for a chance to see the amazing acrobatics of a Peregrine Falcon high above Hickory Nut Gorge. Peregrine Falcons (Falco Peregrinus) may slice through the air at more than 60mph or dive on smaller birds in flight at speeds up to 200mph. By the early 1960s, no Peregrines were found in this area, but these magnificent birds have made a comeback thanks to captive-breeding programs. Since 1990 when three of these young birds fledged in the Park, Peregrines have been sighted here almost every year.

About Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park is a developing international outdoor destination located 25 miles southeast of Asheville on Highway 64/74A in Chimney Rock, N.C. It is recognized as one of the Southeast’s most iconic sites and popular travel destinations. The Park’s 535-million-year-old monolith called Chimney Rock can be accessed via a 499-step Outcroppings Trail and offers guests 75-mile panoramic views of Hickory Nut Gorge and Lake Lure. The Park features one of the highest waterfalls of its kind east of the Mississippi River, Hickory Nut Falls, at 404 feet. Hickory Nut Gorge, one of the state’s most significant centers of biodiversity, is home to 36 rare plant species and 14 rare animal species. The Rumbling Bald section of the greater State Park off of Boys Camp Road in Chimney Rock is the only other area of the Park that is currently open to the public. A destination for travel groups, weddings and special events, the Chimney Rock section of the Park also hosts innovative educational programs for schools, homeschoolers, scouts and summer camps. Visit Chimney Rock’s website at chimneyrockpark.com.

About Wings to Soar

Wings to Soar is a nonprofit organization based in Trenton, GA. Their mission is to create awareness about the vital role birds of prey play in the natural world. Their free-flying raptor program gives audiences a unique opportunity to view and interact with birds of prey up close. Their goals are to facilitate a connection to the natural world, to spark curiosity and to create a sense of value for all forms of life.

ASAP Farm Tour Canceled Due to Threat of Avian Flu

Tuesday, September 8th, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – In response to the threat of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza, ASAP (Appalachian Sustainable Agriculture Project) has canceled their 2015 Farm Tour. The tour was planned for September 19-20 and was to feature more than 30 farms across Western North Carolina.

“It is with great regret that that we must cancel the Farm Tour as it offers life-changing farm experiences for locals and visitors alike and brings much-needed revenue and support to area farmers,” said ASAP’s Executive Director Charlie Jackson. “But the risk of inviting thousands of visitors to multiple farms during this time is too much of a threat to ignore. The potential spread of this disease could be devastating for commercial and backyard poultry flocks throughout the region.”

The mortality rate for infected birds is nearly 100%. Approximately 50 million birds have died in the U.S. as a result of HPAI this year. This current outbreak does not infect people, and meat and eggs continue to be safe for human consumption. The primary concern is with the spread of the disease to birds. This particular strain of influenza is unusually infectious and has the potential to impact all North Carolina poultry farming, large and small. North Carolina State Veterinarian Dr. R. Douglas Meckes  calls this outbreak the “worst animal disease event in U.S. history.”

HPAI is considered a seasonal threat, thought to be transmitted from wild waterfowl to domestic poultry. This outbreak is unusually deadly and contagious for poultry. As the fall migration of wild birds birds progresses with cooler temperatures, there is a high likelihood that it will impact poultry in our region. Once here, it can easily be carried to chicken flocks by humans on shoes, clothing, and even car tires.

“Now, more than ever, we need to support our farms,” said Jackson. “Please continue to visit farms, orchards, shop at farmers tailgate markets, and seek out restaurants and grocers that purchase from local farms. There are numerous local food and farm activities that we can all do to continue to show our support for local food and farms.”

ASAP will offer a full refund for all advanced Farm Tour passes sold, or they can be converted to donations to support local farms. Contact Scott Bunn, ASAP’s Development Director, at [email protected] or 828-236-1282 for more information. Visit ASAP’s online Local Food Guide (www.appalachiangrown.org) to find ways to buy from local farms. The North Carolina Department of Agriculture’s website (www.ncagr.gov/avianflu) provide more  information about HPAI, including the agricultural impact of the virus.


ASAP’s mission is to help local farms thrive, link farmers to markets and supporters, and build healthy communities through connections to local food. To learn more about ASAP’s work in the region, visit asapconnections.org, or call (828) 236-1282.

Peppers are Popping in September

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – This month peppers from Appalachian Grown farms bring a little sweet and a little heat to ASAP’s Get Local campaign. Area farmers grow such a variety of peppers from sweet bells to spicy habaneros to peppers for frying like padróns and peppers for stuffing like poblanos. Chefs at Appalachian Grown partner restaurants take full advantage of this abundance this month to celebrate ASAP’s Get Local campaign.

  • The Hop Ice Cream Café will feature heat from Smoking J’s Fiery Foods in their chocolate and hot pepper ice cream, as well as using experimenting with pepper jellies in the month of September.
  • Posana Café has an exciting event planned this month that will include Appalachian Grown peppers and other fall delicacies. For the sixth year, Posana will host a fundraiser to benefit ASAP’s Growing Minds Farm to School Program. On Thursday, September 24, Executive chef/co-owner Peter Pollay and his team are creating a special Appalachian Grown dinner menu featuring area farms and the fall harvest. All of the proceeds from the special menu will support ASAP’s efforts to enable children to have positive experiences with local food.
  • The Park Ridge Café at Park Ridge Health will be using purple, red, orange, and yellow peppers from Leadford Farms in a chopped cucumber and feta-tomato Greek salad. Additionally, they’ll have a vegetarian stuffed pepper with white beans and a vegetarian chorizo with goat cheese and toasted pepita-cilantro pesto. They use local peppers in soups, sauces, and plenty of other dishes available throughout the month of September.
  • UNC Dining Services will be using local peppers from Perez Farms in Henderson and Rutherford County, including hot peppers in a shrimp diablo as well as yellow bell peppers in their salad bar this month.

ASAP’s Farm Tour is on September 19–20. Farm Tour-goers can Get Local themselves by buying peppers from many farms participating in the tour including Smoking J’s Fiery Foods. Most of ASAP’s Get Local restaurants source from one or more farms on this year’s Tour. Visit Get Local restaurants to support these farms and purchase your Farm Tour ticket at asapconnections.org to visit the farms that feed you.

Visit ASAP’s website at asapconnections.org/getlocal to find details on what’s happening this month. You can also Get Local at home: Find each month’s featured food—and other seasonal products—at your neighborhood farmers tailgate market, roadside stand, or grocery store. Browse for markets, stands, and stores via ASAP’s online Local Food Guide at appalachiangrown.org.


ASAP’s mission is to help local farms thrive, link farmers to markets and supporters, and build healthy communities through connections to local food. To learn more about ASAP’s work, visit asapconnections.org, or call (828) 236-1282.

Tails and Trails 5k Adventure Run

Tuesday, September 1st, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Do you and your dog like to run together? Join us on Saturday, October 3 for the 8th Annual Tails & Trails 5K Adventure Run at the Buncombe County Sports Park in Candler. The run starts at 9:30 a.m. and is open to adults, children and dogs of all ages. Put your paws to the pavement and come join us for this unique fun run!

You can register online today.

Register in advance with the mail-in registration form attached below (if you register by September 18 you’ll receive an event T-Shirt), or register the day of the race.

Check in and late registration is at 9 a.m. on October 3. The cost is $20 for adults, $10 for children ages 4 – 12, and 2 cans of dog food, which will be donated to the Asheville Humane Society. A portion of the proceeds from the event will also be donated to Asheville Humane Society.

Dogs must remain on leashes at all times. The run will be on the Buncombe County Sports Park track.

For more information, call Jay Nelson at 250-4269.

Help West Asheville Residents ‘Name that Creek’

Tuesday, September 1st, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – An anonymous creek that runs through West Asheville’s Falconhurst community has been claimed and could get a name in coming months. Residents are working with RiverLink and the City of Asheville on a formal process to name the creek that runs roughly parallel to Louisiana Avenue through to Patton Avenue.

Falconhurst is a community in West Asheville, bounded by Haywood Road and Louisiana, Mitchell and Patton avenues.

The creek begins along Dunwell Street, squarely between Pruitt and Tryon streets. It runs parallel to Dunwell, crossing Tanglewood as it flows through the neighborhood Smith Mill Creek, a tributary of the French Broad River.

While it doesn’t have a name, the creek has not escaped the notice of the people who live by it. For months, neighbors have been working with RiverLink and the City on the naming process, one that has now led to a survey. So help us “name that creek.”


Take the survey

Here are the three creek names under consideration and the history behind them.


  • Hayes Creek – named after Rutherford P. Hayes, son of former president Rutherford B. Hayes. He purchased a 1,200-acre farm in West Asheville in 1897, including the Falconhurst farm. The property was used as an experimental agricultural station and the basis for many projects instrumental to the area’s and Asheville’s overall development. His home still stands in the heart of the Falconhurst neighborhood at 93 Blue Ridge Ave.


  • Falcon Springs Creek – The creek itself is fed by a number of springs in the backyards of a few local residents. Falcon Springs Creek is a nod to the natural habitat of the creek path, a reference to the neighborhood’s name Falconhurst and a tribute to the big population of falcons that used to fly the skies of Western North Carolina.


  • Fox Creek – The natural habitat surrounding the creek will soon be developed into Craggy Park, a tract of 45 houses. Many neighbors have spotted at least one fox who still lives in the woods around the creek and wanted a name that honors the animals that still live in our midst.


Which name do you favor? Take the RiverLink creek-naming survey.


Naming of creeks

After a name is chosen it must be approved by Asheville City Council; then it is submitted to the United States Geological Survey and eventually becomes the official name for the creek. Since the project’s inception, RiverLink has sponsored three successful creek name changes with the help of community volunteers:

  • Buttermilk Creek, a tributary of Hominy Creek in West Asheville.
  • Penland Creek, which runs along Waynesville Avenue in West Asheville, through the New Belgium Brewing site and into the French Broad River.
  • Big Branch, a tributary of Reems Creek in Weaverville.

Historic Biltmore Village Brochure Cover Design Contest

Tuesday, September 1st, 2015

ASHEVILLE NC – Calling All Artists Historic Biltmore Village is looking for a new cover design for our brochure.  The winning design will be used on the cover of our next brochure along with our Facebook and twitter pages.  Credit and a brief bio of the winning artist will also be included.

Historic Biltmore Village prints 60,000 brochures a year and is distributed throughout Western NC.  This opportunity will allow the winning artist to have their painting seen by locals and tourists alike.

The painting needs to be a reflection of Historic Biltmore Village and the HBV logo will be added to the winning painting prior to brochure printing.

Rules for the contest are:

  1. Paintings must be created in physical media (no digital “paintings”)
    (i.e. Oil, watercolor, pastel, acrylic, etc. Note – we have nothing against digital mediums – but we don’t want to judge them against physical paintings.)
  2. Paintings sizes are not important. You may upload whatever image size you are comfortable sharing.
    (We suggest a minimum of 600-1000 pixels on the longest side so the judge has enough resolution to discern details) jpeg format only please.
  3.  Your painting must be your own original concept and not a copy of anyone else’s copyrighted material.
  4. ALL entries (not just winners) will be displayed on the Historic Biltmore Village website. Each entry becomes part of the public, historical online contest catalog and will not be removed at a later date.
  5. All submissions must be made using the following email address.  [email protected] See Website for more contact information. Physical submission cannot be accepted.
  6. By entering this art competition, you are granting us a non-exclusive license to reproduce images of your artwork
    (on this website, brochure, social media and in our newsletters…with credit and links to you, of course). No other use will be applied without your consent.
  7. Artworks may be submitted until midnight, September 15, 2015

The winning artist will receive:

A $250 cash award

1 night stay at the DoubleTree Biltmore Hilton Hotel

Gift Certificates from:  The Cantina, Village Wayside, Corner Kitchen

Gifts from Lilly Pulitzer, Jos A. Bank, Talbots and MTN. Merch.

In addition to this, the winning artist’s work will be hung and made available for sale at Southern Highland Craft Guild, if you so desire.

About Historic Biltmore Village:  Located directly across from the world famous Biltmore Estate, The Historic Biltmore Village is truly one of the south’s most unique touring and shopping environments.  The Village features a collection of independent, regional and national retailers along with the most sought after restaurants and outstanding lodging. It’s the perfect night out for foodies, brews and friends.  It’s a must see site for history buffs and architecture aficionados.  In short, it’s a destination like no other.