Thursday, December 31, 2009

NC Parks Celebrate "The Year of the Birds"

North Carolina's state parks will pay tribute to its winged residents and visitors in 2010 by celebrating the "Year of the Birds," according to the N.C. Division of Parks & Recreation. Throughout the year, birds and bird-watching will be the focus of special programs and activities in the state parks, many of them in partnership with Audubon North Carolina, which works with the state parks system on research and management projects involving bird habitats. The state parks system is also making available a special bandana of some of the signature birds found in the parks. State park educational programs hope to appeal to North Carolina’s bird enthusiasts, as well as inspire new bird-watching families.  

Rockslide Crews Begin "Round-the-clock" Effort

With the holiday break ending, crews working to clear a rockslide on Interstate 40 in western North Carolina have started shifts around the clock to clear boulders from the road. The N.C. Dept. of Transportation says crews will be drilling holes for about 600 rock bolts, used to stabilize the mountainside boulders.  A helicopter is also being used to clear trees from the rockslide area, in addition to airlifting equipment to the work crews. Officials estimate the highway will reopen in March but say snow and ice could slow workers down, making conditions hazardous on steep and rocky terrain. To find out more, visit and

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Camp Lake James a Winter Wonderland

It doesn't snow often on Lake James, but when it does ... beautiful. If you're in the area for the holidays or the new year, we hope you'll swing by The Camp and see us. And, if you're ready to begin your adventures here, visit our web site to see available homes and lots or contact our sales team at (866) 375-0065. See Lake James for yourself. Make arrangements to stay in one of our two rental cabins.

Monday, December 28, 2009

Biltmore Winter Value Special

January 3 to February 28, Biltmore, Asheville NC. The Biltmore Winter Special  includes guest room accommodations, chef's breakfast buffet in The Dining Room, and valet parking at the inn. Rates starting at $169: Sunday-Thursday and starting at $219: Friday-Saturday. *Rates and availability are subject to change.

Or check out Biltmore's luxury New Year's Eve Packages...

New Year's Celebrations in the North Carolina Mountains

We have availability for Cabins, Bed and Breakfasts and all types of lodging to help you ring in the New Year. How about the annual Possum Drop (no possums are harmed in the making of this celebration)? Or maybe a Polar Plunge, Swing Dance or Fireworks? Whatever your pleasure you'll find it in the beautiful North Carolina mountains - along with skiing and other winter sports, cozy fires for cuddling and beautiful views of snow-capped peaks. Get your 2010 off to a great start!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow...

December 21, Highest elevation in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Mount LeConte. The winter caretaker at Mt. LeConte Lodge, Doug McFalls, reported 20 inches of snow with drifts up to three feet. The Mount Leconte Lodge can be reached by 5 trails and offers overnight stays with meals and some of the most beautiful views in the Park. You can see more of Doug's photos on his Blog “Life on LeConte.”

New Musical Director of Junaluska Singers Announced

Dec 21, Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center, Lake Junaluska NC. Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center is pleased to announce Dr. Melodie Galloway as the new Musical Director for the Lake Junaluska Singers (LJS) beginning January 1, 2010. Dr. Galloway holds a Master's degree from Florida State University in Vocal Performance and a Doctor of Musical Arts in Conducting from the University of Greensboro. Her experience as a conductor and soprano soloist includes opera, music theatre, and a professional vocal ensemble. Currently Dr. Galloway is Assistant Professor of Music at UNC Asheville, directing the University Singers, the Chamber Symphony, and Studio 18 - an advanced vocal jazz ensemble, and she is the Coordinator of Vocal Studies. For a full biography and more information about Dr. Galloway, visit

"The Handmade House" now available

What do you get when you team 100-plus craft artists, an innovative arts advocacy organization, and a respected developer of master-planned communities? You get a "Handmade House" and a model for how to integrate regional crafts with residential design. Now the process and the product have been documented in a book which chronicles this wonderful adventure with photographs and words. Photographer Stewart Young and writer Ben Brown have published a beautiful photography book about the HandMade House at the Ramble. The book is available for purchase at , and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to HandMade in America.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Heinzelmannchen Brewery's Open House

Dec 24, 11AM - 5PM, Heinzelmannchen Brewery, Downtown Sylva NC. Stop by for some Holiday Cheer, goodies and those last minute gifts and stocking stuffers! Your Gnometown Cookbook is in - $21.
Holiday Hours: Mon, Dec 21 10AM- 5PM
Dec 22 & Dec 23, 11AM - 6:30PM   Dec 24, 11AM - 5PM    Closed Friday, Dec 25
Dec 26 10AM - 5PM    Same hours for the week of  Dec 28 - Jan 2, 2010

Winter Holiday Package Retreat at Shoji Spa

Holiday Packages from Shoji Spa, Asheville NC. This combination for 2 people adds up to big savings during the holiday season...Shoji's Lodging Package is available for reservations occurring Monday-Thursday this Winter. 1 Night's stay in the Owner's Loft, 2 One Hour Private Spa Passes, 2 Fifty Minute Massages - $420 OR 1 Night's Stay in the Lodge, 2 One Hour Private Spa Passes, 2 Fifty Minute Massages - $450.

Last Chance for the Polar Express

Through December 23, Great Smoky Mountains Rail Road, Bryson City NC. The Polar Express comes to life as the train departs Bryson City. Read along with the story as the train makes its round trip journey to the North Pole. Meet Santa and enjoy caroling, hot cocoa, and a treat. For those who believe - a special memento for each child. Kids are encouraged to wear their pajamas! Begin a great holiday tradition with your family! Ticket prices include admission to the Smoky Mountains Model Trains Museum.

First Time Christmas Eve Limited - Offered for the first time this Christmas Eve, pajama clad passengers will board trains bound for the North Pole at The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad! Christmas Eve Limited ticket prices start at $48.00 for adults and $36.00 for children ages 2-12, and all standard seating passengers on this special Christmas Eve excursion will receive a souvenir Polar Express cocoa mug. Children under two years old ride complimentary, but must be seated in an adult’s lap. First Class seating upgrades are available.

Friday, December 18, 2009

Grinch Steals the Asheville Visitor Center!

Breaking news from Asheville North Carolina. In an apparent attempt to take over control of all Asheville tourism, the Grinch Who Stole Christmas has successfully invaded the city's visitor center at 36 Monford Avenue. Accompanied his two nefarious henchman the Grinch set up a bulwark in the main lobby where he remains holed up. All visitors in the city are asked to report to the center immediately. Authorities believe the smirking hoodlum  is actually a clone, the result of a fiendish plot by the gang known only as "Gingerbread Men". The gang is said to have a hideout somewhere in the Asheville hills easily identified by an odd orange roof. The public is asked to be on the look out and report any suspicious activities. More news when it occurs...

Thursday, December 17, 2009

UNBELIEVABLE Last Minute Asheville Getaway Deals!

Carolina Mornings with 80 luxury vacation rentals and Asheville Cabins is offering unbelievable  last minute deals. Choose 1 of the 3 options below and as a bonus, get FREE early check-in and a late check-out. This package has up to $160 in savings! You choose:
$100 Dinner Gift Certificate@ Zambra   OR
$50 off your reservation  OR
a Free Candle Light Tour tix @ Biltmore Estate   -  The choice is yours!
Only valid for new RESERVATIONS arriving December 18, 2009-December 26, 2009. Reservations made online will not show the discounts-We will adjust the reservation the following business day! Our Promise! Choose ANY of our available vacation rentals!

Brevard Holiday Gallery Walk

Dec 18, downtown Brevard NC. Looking for those last minute gifts? Why not shop local and support local artists. The galleries, art spots and restaurants in downtown Brevard will host a Holiday Gallery Walk on Friday,  from 5:00-9:00 pm. Stop by and enjoy the many new exhibits and art locations in the downtown area. Be sure to look for the 16 sculptures and five murals located in downtown as well. For more information call TC Arts Council at 828-884-2787 or go to and click on Art Tours.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Special Event this Weekend at the Saluda Mountain Jamboree

Dec 19 -  The Saluda Mountain Jamboree is sponsoring a special concert to benefit "Toys for Tots." The present economic conditions have left "Toys for Tots" struggling to meet the needs of the underprivileged children in Western North Carolina. "MATT STILLWELL", an up and coming country music artist, has agreed to take time from his Christmas break to perform for this worthy organization. The ticket price is only $15.00 and will be sold at the door. The doors will open at 5:30 pm and will be general admission so come early to get the best seats. Concert starts at 7pm.

Please tell your friends to plan on being at The Jamboree for this concert. You can find directions and orther information at the Jamboree website: or

What's Your Sign?

If you're Asheville NC your sign is part of  a $1.65 million community-wide signage program designed to help visitors and residents find their way to nearly 90 attractions, public spaces, historic sites and destinations. The first sign, located on Patton Avenue in downtown Asheville, was unveiled on Monday with the remaining 299 being installed over the next 3 months.

Special Winter Rates at the Inn on Biltmore Estate

Cozy up at the Inn on Biltmore Estate with someone special and the Winter Value Package, January 3 through February 28. Rates start at $169 for weekdays and $229 for weekends and include guest room accommodations, chef's breakfast buffet in The Dining Room, and valet parking at the inn. Stay two nights or more on any package and your estate admission is complimentary.

This Weekend at Flat Rock Cinema

Dec 18- 24, The Flat Rock Cinema, 2700 Greenville Highway, Flat Rock NC. For one week only: Disney's A Christmas Carol, a marvelous and touching yuletide toy of a movie, and the miracle is that it goes right back to the gilded Victorian spirit of those black-and-white films of yore."  Reservations are encouraged, but not required, by calling  (828) 697-2463 during our normal box office hours.The box office opens one hour prior to our first show each day.

Annual Christmas Mountain Homecoming

19, 10AM - 2PM, Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Cherokee NC. A Mountain Homecoming with demonstrations of crafts past, live music, refreshments, and walking tours of the Mountain Farm Museum are just a few of the reasons to attend this annual event! A real “old-time” Christmas celebration!

The Oconaluftee Visitor Center and Mountain Farm Museum are located on Newfound Gap Road (U.S. 441), two miles north of Cherokee, N.C. For more information, call the visitor center at (828) 497-1904. All activities are free and open to the public.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Doggone Good Athletes

18-20 . WNC Ag Center. 1301 Fanning Bridge Rd. Fletcher, NC    USDAA Dog Agility Trial  (Fletcher) Western North Carolina Agricultural Center  The Blue Ridge Agility Club of Western North Carolina will host a United States Dog Agility Association (USDAA) agility trial. Spectators are welcomed to attend and admission is free. Over 150 purebred and mixed bred dogs, from throughout the southeast, will compete at various levels of difficulty.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Marianna Black Library Wins!

Judged the overall best float in this year’s Bryson City Christmas Parade, held last Saturday was the Marianna Black Library’s entry. The float featured Youth Services Librarian Ellen Whitehead reading Clement Moore’s classic “The Night Before Christmas” to a group of children. It’s a role that Ellen performs regularly at the library’s “Story Time”, a reading program for pre-school children. Known as “the biggest, little Christmas Parade in the Smokies”, the 35th annual Bryson City parade featured clowns, rock and country bands, floats, homecoming queens, marching bands, and of course, Santa.

Christmas at RagApple Lassie Vineyards

Dec 19,  noon-6PM, RagApple Lassie Vineyards, Booneville NC. This Saturday's festivities will feature an afternoon of joy and carols made all the more special with the great RagApple Lassie wines. Lisa Woods, a seasoned entertainer with the clear sweet voice of an angel, will fill your heart with songs of the season as you relax and enjoy the day.

And, if you still have a few gifts to buy, we have just the thing!  Frank's favorite candy, Peanut Brittle made with RagApple Lassie Chardonnay, new tote bags with our signature embroidered logo, new handcrafted bottle toppers, AND, our first ever signature logo pewter Christmas ornaments make great gifts and or stocking stuffers.   1-866-RAGAPPLE   Website:

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Folkestone Inn Gift Certificates

It is not too late to purchase a Folkestone Inn Gift Certificate for that special someone on your Christmas List. Call us and we will customize it for you get it to you in time for Christmas. Toll Free 1-888-812-3385
 FOLKESTONE INN  A BEAUTIFUL MOUNTAIN VIEW. Soft drinks, snacks & cookies all day. Guest computer in library. Wireless, full gourmet breakfast each day. Our Smoky Mountain Bed and Breakfast is filled with old fashioned charm and modern amenities. Open year 'round, private balconies and mountain vistas. Folkestone Inn, 101 Folkestone Rd., Bryson City, NC 28713

Christmas Events at Lake Junaluska

Visit Lake Junaluska's beautifully decorated Lambuth Inn during the Christmas season and enjoy the splendor and grace of nativities, lights and trees! The Train room and other select rooms will only be open during meal times.
Dec 14th and 15th – Dinner hours only (5:30pm -7:00pm)
Dec 16th – Lunch only (Noon until 1:30pm)
Dec  17th, 18th, 19th- Lunch and Dinner hours (Noon until 1:30pm; 5:30pm -7:00pm)
Dec 20th – Dinner hour only (5:30pm – 7:00pm)
Dec 21st- 26th, the Lambuth Inn will be closed.

Song O’ Sky Sweet Adelines, December 17th, 6PM., Lambuth Inn
Dinner Entertainment: Song O’ Sky Chorus - a chapter of Sweet Adelines International
Adults: $17; Children 6-11: $8.50, Children 5 and under Free
Song O’ Sky Chorus is a chapter of Sweet Adelines International, an organization dedicated to promoting and teaching one of America’s original art forms, barbershop harmony, or four-part harmony sung a cappella. Enjoy the sweet tunes of the Sweet Adelines while you dine with family and friends!

Voices in the Laurel, Dec18 6PM, Lambuth Inn
Dinner Entertainment: Voices in the Laurel, Adults: $17; Children 6-11: $8.50, Children 5 and under Free. Special entertainment during dinner will be provided this evening by Voices in the Laurel.

Tuscola High School Choirs, December 19, 6PM, Lambuth Inn
Dinner Entertainment: Tuscola High School Chamber Choir and Summit, Adults: $17; Children 6-11: $8.50
Children 5 and under Free.Celebrate an evening out with family and friends at the beautifully decorated Lambuth Inn. The Tuscola High School Chamber Choir and Summit will provide entertainment during dinner.
For more details visit:

Give a gift that Lasts from Riverlink

Give a gift that supports your lifestyle and need for open space and greenways, good water quality, recreation, health, sound long-term economic development, transportation, education and flood prevention YOU CAN OWN AND GIVE A PIECE OF THE GREENWAY FOR JUST $50. Purchase a Deed of Support for the Wilma Dykeman RiverWay, with 100% of the proceeds used to connect the dots and RiverLink missing pieces of the RiverWay.Other gifts ideas include:
~RiverLink membership - the gift that keeps giving, by becoming a member of RiverLink, you become a defender of the river.
~ A Waterproof River Access Guide; the perfect present for the paddler in the family, filled with pieces of historical information on the French Broad River, as well a detailed map of the FBR access points.
~ The French Broad by Wilma Dykeman; a great gift for the bookworm! A wonderfully written piece of non-fiction that captures the natural and human diversity of the Asheville region.

Find all these gifts and more at Give a gift that keeps giving. Give a gift that supports and sustains the water you drink.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

AAA Four Diamonds Award Announced

AAA has announced its Four Diamond awards for 2010 and several North Carolina hotels and restaurants are among the winners.
NC Mountain awardees of AAA's Four Diamond Lodging include:
Asheville:  1900 Inn on Montford, Albemarle Inn, Grand Bohemian Hotel, Inn on Biltmore Estate, and The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa
Boone: Lovill House Inn in Boone
Cashiers: Innisfree Inn By
Highlands: Old Edwards Inn & Spa
Lake Toxaway: Greystone Inn in Lake Toxaway

AAA's 2010 Four Diamond NC Mountain Restaurants:
Asheville: Horizons in Asheville
Boone: Gamekeeper Restaurant and Bar
Highlands: Madison's Restaurant and Wine Garden

The Four Diamond rating is defined as: Properties are upscale in all areas. Accommodations are progressively more refined and stylish. The physical attributes reflect an obvious enhanced level of quality throughout. The fundamental hallmarks at this level include an extensive array of amenities combined with a high degree of hospitality, service and attention to detail. Read more about 1-5 diamond ratings from AAA...

Foothills Conservancy - Give a Gift that Lasts

As 2009 comes to a close, the Foothills Conservancy now has over 45,000 acres forever protected! Consider these special last minute gifts for your friends, family and co-workers. A gift to Foothills Conservancy is a gift of land for the future:
Gift Membership: "The gift that keeps on giving. A "Friend" gift membership in Foothills Conservancy is a gift that lasts all year long. Friend $35  CLICK HERE to purchase a gift membership.

A Year-End Gift Honoring or Remembering Someone Special. At this Holiday Season remember those who are no longer with us and honor those who are.We'll send a seasonal card of acknowledgment at your request. CLICK HERE to make a special year-end gift

Gift Membership + Note Card Set. Give a gift membership at the "Conservator" level or above, and we'll send your gift recipient a package of our scenic note cards depicting some of the special places we have protected. (12 note cards with envelopes) Conservator $50, Protector $100, Preserver $250, Steward $500. CLICK HERE to purchase a gift membership with note card set

Please allow time for mail delivery before Christmas.For more information or to purchase these special gifts please call our office 828-437-9930 or email

Deck the Hall for Wildlife Today at Camp Lake James

Dec 12, 1PM - 3PM. Camp Lake James' Annual “Deck The Hall For Wildlife." This annual event is as exciting for our local wildlife as it is for you! Bring the family and bundle up for a few hours of creative fun. We will decorate the trees with popcorn chains, birdseed ornaments and fruit/cinnamon garland -- all while enjoying a cup of hot chocolate by the fire! The activity will begin at The Camp Social Hall at 1 p.m. and end around 3 p.m. It costs $5 per family. If you would like to join us, call us at (828)584-2863.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Early Bird Cabin Discount

Great Smokys Cabin Rentals, 1560 Main St., Bryson City NC. Book two months in advance of your stay of at least two nights and receive a 10% discount off the stay. This offer applies to new reservations only and is good for any non-holiday stay. Choose one of our vacation cabin rentals in the uncrowded, unhurried, unspoiled and uncommon North Carolina side of the Great Smoky Mountains, for exciting vacations and quiet romantic getaways. All sizes, prices.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Christmas Specials at La Petite Spa

La Petite Spa   Brevard NC. 828-883-2238. Christmas Specials:
Christmas Vacation -  Tropical Escape Wrap w/ Vichy Shower, 60 minute Swedish Massage, European Facial plus lunch. Allow 4 hours - $205.00
Jingle Bell Day
  - 60 Minute Swedish Massage, European Facial, Express Pedicure plus lunch Allow 4 hours - $175.00
Holly Jolly Rescue
  - European Facial, 30 minute Swedish Massage and Traditional Pedicure
Allow 4 hours - $125.00
Vixen's Delight
  - 30 minute Sauna, specialty Facial, Traditonal Pedicure. Allow 3 hours - $95.00
Sleigh Bells for Two
  - 30 minute Sauna plus 90 minute Couple's Massage, Wine and Cheese in Room. Allow 3 hours - $195.00
Shopping Escape 
- 30 minute Sauna, Detox Seaweed Wrap, Specialty Facial plus lunch. Allow 3 hours - $145.00
Mistletoe Relief
  - 30 minute Sauna, 60 minute Reflexology or Swedish massage, Express Manicure and Pedicure. Allow 3 hours - $105.00
Santa's Retreat
  - 30 minute Sauna, 90 minute Swedish massage. Allow 2 1/2 hours - $90.00

A Winter's Tale at the WNC Nature Center

Dec 12, 6PM-9PM, Western North Carolina Nature Center, Asheville NC. Don your mittens for a winter stroll along the trails to see the animals and holiday lights at night. Enrichment programs, presentations, entertainment (Mountain Marionettes on Saturday evening), crafts and more will be provided during our Holiday in Lights. $6 per person ($1 off for members of Friends of the WNC Nature Center).

Bryson City has the Spirit of Christmas

Dec 12, 6PM, Downtown Bryson City, NC. A true Christmas experience! Luminaries line historic Everett Street, the signature hemlock is lit with memorial lights, carolers and musical artists abound, and a living nativity proceeds up the avenue. Photos are available with Santa and Mrs. Claus, children can post letters to Santa, and many shops offer special event discounts. Read more...

Mountain Winter Festival in Spruce Pine

Dec 12, 1PM - 7PM, Downtown Spruce Pine, Spruce Pine NC. Historic Downtown Spruce Pine, nationally known as the Home of the Perfect Christmas Tree, will transform into a spectacular and magical evening this holiday season. Blanketed with thousands of lights, the historic Upper Street becomes an eye-popping winter wonderland with real ice skating in the streets, holiday festooned wagon rides, Story time for kids, festive food, a unique shopping experience and more. A special holiday event for the whole family unlike any other!

Soup for Toys at M2(Squared) this weekend

Dec 10-13, M2 Restaurant, 125 West Main Street, Spindale NC. Bring a Stocking Stuffer or Larger Toy for Children ages 11-12 until Sunday Dec. 13th and Receive a Free Cup of Soup! The Toys will be Donated to The Salvation Army’s Christmas Cheer!!

This week's Food and Fun:
Dec 10 - Sushi Night! Don’t Miss Out! Reservations Recommended (288-4641)
Dec 11 - Alex Thompson on Keyboard and $5.00 Martinis!
Dec 12 - Featuring a Three Course Dinner Special for $19.95!
Dec 13 - Brunch From 11:00am-2:00pm. Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar Begins at 12:00pm. NFL on the Screen and Bluegrass in the Background.
Dec 15 - Soup/Sandwich and Beer Tuesday. Come Enjoy a Casual Meal That Won’t Break the Bank! Featuring The Piano Man Himself: Alex Thompson and CHEAP BEER SPECIALS!
Dec 16 - Trivia at 8:00pm and Half Price Bottled Wine!! What a Bargain!

The Saluda Inn and Wine Cellar Host Local Artists

Dec 11, 6PM, Saluda Inn and Wine Cellar, 229 Greenville Street, Saluda NC. A collection of artists and crafts people will be selling paintings, pottery, jewelry, artistic wearables, metal work and more at the Saluda Inn and Wine Cellar beginning at 6:00 PM during Hometown Christmas. This is a family friendly event! Guitarists Ellen Trnka and Marc Yaxley will be featured musicians. Trnka, known for her languid mix of blues, country, folk, jazz, covers and originals joins up with intense classical and jazz guitarist Yaxley. The public is encouraged to celebrate an evening of local art in a holiday atmosphere while helping to support the artist community and local commerce. Website:

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Christmas Special at Tryon Inn

Mimosa Inn,  65 Mimosa Inn Drive,  Tryon NC. Want to get away for the holidays? Why not spend Christmas at the Mimosa Inn?( ) This special includes accommodations for 2 nights, choice of Queen or King Rooms, breakfast each morning, flowers and champagne in your room upon arrival. A wine and cheese reception by the fireplace on Christmas Eve then enjoy a full Buffet Dinner Christmas Day. 495.00+. Contact: 828-859-7688

Spirit of Giving Alive and Well in West Jefferson

The good folks in West Jefferson and Ashe County haven't forgotten the best part of the Holiday Season: the Gift of Giving. Times really are tough now, but it gives us all hope when we remember to share what we can with those who need our help. Please support these efforts and those in your own community:

Dec 15 from 5-6:30PM.  Canned Food Drive - Come celebrate the season and network with your fellow Chamber members and their guests at The Ashe County "Holiday Chamber Blast ".  Bring canned goods to the Chamber Blast to be donated to Ashe Outreach Ministry.  Not a chamber member yet? Good time to give yourself the gift of membership!

Dec 9 at 4PM.  The Children's Christmas Project annual wrapping at Family Central comes to a close today.Distribution day will be Thursday, Dec. 10 from 9am-6pm. The Children's Christmas Project provides "Christmas" for children throughout the rural mountain communities of Ashe County. Each year underprivileged children and families have the opportunity to create a "wish list" of items that will assist in meeting their needs and desires. Supplies and donations appreciated. For more information, call Glenda Luther at 336-246-2461.

Dec. 12 from 11AM-1PM Get your family (or pet) photo taken with Santa.  For $10 you'll receive 1 CD with an 8.5x11 index print. Located next to Creative Printers in West Jefferson (across from the Wilco-Hess). Proceeds to benefit Ashe County Humane Society. For more information, call Dee at 336-246-7746.

Now through Dec. 31.  Sears Hometown Store will welcome the holiday season by sponsoring a food drive. to benefit Ashe Sharing Center and Lighthouse Ministries. Donation boxes are located at 203 E. First St. in West Jefferson. Customers are encouraged to drop off non-perishable canned and boxed food items as well as other needed products, such as diapers, paper towels, handy wipes, latex gloves, etc. during business hours. Customers will receive $5-$25 coupons off future purchases for each donation made. For more info, call 336-246-7131.
For additional information contact the Ashe County Chamber:

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Saluda Home Town Christmas

Dec 11, 6PM - 8PM, Main St. Saluda, NC. A step back to the charm of days gone by - the town of Saluda all decked out in lights and ready for Christmas! Stroll down main street and listen to live music in most of the shops, galleries and restaurants. Experience the warmth and joy of a small town during the holidays. The open house and musical events are closed with an ecumenical service delivered by Saluda ministers at the Saluda Presbyterian Church. Website:

Dream View on Beech Mountain Offers Discounts

Dream View Chalet is currently offering a discount on select 2010 winter and spring dates. Book your 3-night or longer stay during one of the periods listed below, and we'll take 10% off!
January 3-14, 18-21 & 25-31
February 1-11, 15-18 & 22-28
March 1-17 & 22-31
April 1-22 & 26-30
May 1-14
    Discount is applied before accomodation fees are added. Vacation must be booked before December 31, 2009 to receive discount. Contact us for specific pricing. For more information about Dream View Chalet... Enjoy 180 degree views at 5325 feet on top of Beech Mountain. 4 BD, 4.5 BA, fireplace, WIFI, PET FRIENDLY. Walk to Land of OZ and OZ Ski Run. Beech Mountain Club privileges. Located next to OZ Cathedral making it perfect for large parties.

    Monday, December 7, 2009

    Santa's Helpers waiting at Penland

    For the Penland fans and craft lovers on your Holiday gift list:
    Baseball Caps
    (Port & Company, 100% cotton) Faded blue, faded green, gray, brick $10.84

    apronsPenland Water Tower Aprons
    Drawing by Abie Harris
    White, yellow, gray, taupe, green
    Two pockets

                                                water bottles

    Water Bottles  BPA-free plastic and stainless steel, with strap
    Red, blue, green   $9.98 
     sketch books
    Penland School of Crafts Spiral Bound Sketchbook
    5-1/2" x 8-1/2", 75 pages, letterpress cover by John Horn
    Cinnamon, green, purple, sienna, yellow  $6.00

    2009 T-shirt
    Penland 2009 T-shirt
    Designed by Slate Grove
    (winner of the 2009 T-shirt contest)
    When they're gone, they're gone!
    S, M, L, 100% cotton

     PLUS gift certificates and Tender Cards, books and more. To purchase items, call the school store at 828-765-2359, x18.
    The store is open Monday through Friday, 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
    All purchases ship via Priority Mail in US, charges range from $4.95-$11.95.

    Saturday, December 5, 2009

    Holiday Member Blast in Ashe County

    Dec 15,  5PM - 6:30PM, Frasers Restaurant & Pub, West Jefferson NC. There will be door prizes and the “50/50” drawing for cash! Enjoy free hors d’oeuvres and selected beverages, along with a cash bar. Come celebrate the season and network with your fellow Chamber members and their guests. We are going to have a Holiday BLAST!

    Adopt an Animal For Christmas

    The Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation, with the special help of our Habitat staff, is launching a new "Adopt an Animal" program just in time for the holidays. Your love for Grandfather Mountain's animals can now be expressed with a simple donation ranging from $25 to $1,000. Your tax-deductible gift will enhance the lives of our otters, bears, eagles, deer and cougars in many ways, from providing new enrichment toys and treats to upgrading habitat facilities. Read more...

    Help Friends of the Smokies with Christmas Shopping

    Shop For Your Friends! While you're making your list & checking it twice, whether your friends and loved ones have been naughty or nice, you can enjoy several opportunities to benefit Friends of the Smokies and help the Park as you shop. Great gear to use and wear while you help the Friends of the Smokies preserve, protect and provide for the vast network of more than 800 miles of scenic trails in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. T-shirts, caps and more. Shop now...

    Christmas in Blowing Rock

    Dec 18 - 19, Blowing Rock School Auditorium, Blowing Rock NC. Christmas in Blowing Rock is hosted by Melvin Tunstall III with a six person adult chorus, seven person kids chorus and featured musical guests, Diana and Sarvis Ridge.The performance is an original script that closely follows the format and genre of the Bing Crosby and Andy Williams Christmas Variety shows. There will be lots of songs, music, dancing, skits, story-telling, etc.” Tickets are $10 for adults and $8 for kids 12 and under and are available at the Blowing Rock Visitors Center, Gems by Gemini and Black Dog Coffee. For tickets call 828-406-2884 or purchase online.

    Friday, December 4, 2009

    Gift certificates become lifetime memories

    Most of us could use a few more happy memories and a lot less "Stuff". Give the special gift of "Mountain Time" this year and the recipient will have happy memories of  the mountains - and you - for years to come. Gift certificates are available from a variety of lodging sources including The Folkestone Inn in Bryson City NC. The certificates can be customized and sent out in time for Christmas and are sure to please all those special people on your gift list. For more information or to order...

    The Folkestone Inn  offers a beautiful MOUNTAIN VIEW. Soft drinks, snacks & cookies all day. Guest computer in library. Wireless, full gourmet breakfast each day. The Smoky Mountain Bed and Breakfast is filled with old fashioned charm and modern amenities. Open year 'round, private balconies and mountain vistas. $109 - $163 per night

    Thursday, December 3, 2009

    Custom Holiday Cards for your family or business

    Check-out these great savings from our favorite online printer. Just upload your image or select from one of dozens of templates you can modify with your individual information. This is as easy as MS Word or notepad or other simple document programs. And if you have trouble they are easy to reach and always helpful.

    75% Off Photo Holiday Cards & FREE SHIPPING!

    Wine Extravaganza at the Backroom

    Dec 8, 6:00PM - 8:00PM, The Backroom at the Flat Rock Wine Shoppe. Wine Extravaganza menu is paired with "Economically Based and Highly Rated" spanish reds, perfect for the holiday season! Call now for reservations (828) 697-6828.
    ...Gruyere and fresh apple spread
    ...Sicilian eggplant caponata
    ...Baked stuffed clams with saffron aioli
    ...Chicken satay
    ...Lamb meatballs with almond sauce
    Just $25.00.  Website:

    This Week at M2 (Squared)

    Dec 4 - Alex Thompson on Keyboard and $5.00 Martinis! Come Relax Before and/or After the Reverse Raffle
    Dec 5 - Mike Rogers and Friends! Beginning at 8:00pm!
    Dec 6 - Brunch From 11:00am-2:00pm. Build Your Own Bloody Mary Bar Begins at 12:00pm. NFL on the Screen and Myra Tending Bar.
    Dec 8 - Soup/Sandwich and Beer Tuesday . Come Enjoy a Casual Meal That Won’t Break the Bank! Featuring The Piano Man Himself: Alex Thompson and CHEAP BEER SPECIALS!
    Dec 9 - Trivia with Nick at 8:00pm and Half Price Bottled Wine!! We Will Have a Three Course Dinner Special for $19.95 to Celebrate the Holiday Pops Concert at The Foundation!!

    PLAN AHEAD!! Starting This Week: Early Bar Opens Wednesday-Friday at 4:00pm We will Feature Early Bird Apps Until 5:00pm…Complimentary! All Gift Certificates are being Sold at 20% Off until Dec. 23rd …what a bargain! Call 288-4641 to make Reservations…as always, we are a WIFI Establishment. In Need of Catering…Look no further! Website:

    Free Saturday Fly-casting Clinic at Headwaters Outfitters

    Dec. 12, 11AM-1PM. French Broad River next to Headwaters’ Outfitters River Shop, 15 Adventure Ridge Road, Brevard NC. MUST MAKE RESERVATION - 828-862-5411. The fly-fishing and paddling retailer is offering 2-hour casting lessons during four weekends from December through March, at no charge. Anyone can participate, whether you’re 8 years old or 80. Participants must arrive by 10:30 a.m. By the end of the class, students will learn the basics of executing a roll cast, sidearm cast, overhead cast and bow-and-arrow cast, using 4- and 5-weight fly rods and reels provided by Headwaters. Additional free clinics are planned for Jan, Feb and March. A half-day guided fly fishing trip will be available at a special rate immediately following the class.

    Headwaters Outfitters is a 17-year-old, family-owned outfitting business that specializes in paddling sports, fly-fishing and hiking in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of western North Carolina. Located at the gateway to Pisgah National Forest, Headwaters offers canoe and kayak rentals, guided fly-fishing trips on public and private waters, and fly-fishing schools ranging from three to eight hours in length.

    1st Annual Live Nativity

    Dec 5, 6PM, 17 Big Cove Road, Saunooke Village, Cherokee NC. A “Live Nativity” produced by Catch the Spirit of Appalachia, and sponsored by the shops of Saunooke Village will debut on the cobbled streets under a " Star of Bethlehem". The Live Nativity will feature songs of the season sung a cappella within each scene, live camels lead by the wise men, a donkey at the stable, and sheep led by the shepherds. Over 35 community members are involved in brining alive the oldest story every told. Additional activities for the day include camel rides and an appearance by Santa.  Mrs. Claus and “Billy the Elf,” will entertain and help Santa hand out candy canes to the children of Western North Carolina. For details call: 828-497-2209.

    Raffle Tickets for Craft Schools

    WIN A ONE-WEEK CLASS AT ARROWMONT, JOHN C. CAMPBELL OR PENLAND!  We’ll mail you the raffle ticket!  2 chances to win a one-week class, including board  (double room w/ shared bath) & meals. Each class valued at $950! Cost of Ticket: $25    Odds of Winning: 1 in 150 (300 tickets will be sold) Each winner will select and register for a class that takes place within one year from the date of the raffle (Jan. 15, 2010). Once they register at the school of their choice, the tuition will be paid for by CCCD. To view classes go to:
    Penland School of Craft:
    Arrowmont School of Arts & Crafts:
    John C. Campbell Folk School:
    Proceeds go to support the programs of the Center for Craft, Creativity & Design non-profit foundation. For more information or to purchase...

    Tuesday, December 1, 2009

    Southern Highlands Guild Artists’ Holiday Sale

    Dec 5, Dec 12, 10AM-4PM, The Folk Art Center, Milepost 382, Asheville NC. Over 70 artists will be participating over the course of the two day sale. The Southern Highland Craft Guild’s annual Holiday Sale has become such a popular event that an extra day has been added this year.  Craftspeople will be on hand in the center’s auditorium to sell select work 10-50% off retailChoose from a variety of gift items including ceramics, jewelry, fiber, paper, glass and wood.  Buying from artists supports the local economy and promotes the mission of the Guild which is bringing together the crafts and craftspeople of the Southern Highlands for the benefit of shared resources, education, marketing and conservation.