Saturday, March 31, 2012

Hunger Games NC Location Gets National Press Coverage

Yesterday morning, NBC's "Today Show" featured a segment about North Carolina film locations used in the blockbuster movie 'The Hunger Games.' The 3:44-minute segment featuring North Carolina reached a national audience of 12,206,542, generating $538,268 in advertising equivalency on America's top-rated morning show program. 

Today correspondent Janet Shamlian opened the segment by reminding viewers that the film was shot entirely in North Carolina. "You know, it didn't take long for the fans who can't get enough of 'The Hunger Games' to start flocking to the sites where the movie was filmed in search of a little adventure themselves - all of them are here in North Carolina," she said.

Shamlian interviewed Assistant NC Commerce Secretary Lynn Minges about the film's positive impact on the state's economy. The segment profiles Hildebran (AKA Henry River Village) as the movie's District 12, the newly created "Hunger Games" fan tour, residents of the town, extras from the movie, how North Carolina is capitalizing on the film and mentions the possibility of the full trilogy being filmed in the state. "The odds are in our favor here in North Carolina," Minges said. Shamlian concluded the spot by broadcasting live from DuPont State Recreational Forest, located between Brevard and Hendersonville.

The North Carolina Division of Tourism's PR team pitched the story idea to the show's producers and then partnered with tourism officials in several counties to assist the five-person "Today" crew as they spent three days filming in the state. PR Manager Margo Metzger guided the crew and worked closely with the Charlotte Regional Visitors Authority, Cleveland County Chamber, Uptown Shelby Association, Burke County Travel & Tourism, and the Transylvania County TDA to facilitate the story.

"The Hunger Games" 4-Day Itinerary has been the most downloaded itinerary on for March and "Hunger Games" has been the top internal search request on the site, with more than triple the next closest search. Get a link for the Hunger Games NC 4-day Itinerary HERE.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Get a jump on Easter with Egg Hunts this Weekend

March 31   Annual Easter Egg Festival and Hunt in Memorial Park. Fun for kids of all ages. Held in downtown Blowing Rock NC.

31   Annual Easter Egg Hunt and Peeps on the Creek Rubber Duck Race  The day holds fun for all ages, including an egg hunt and contests, the duck race and deviled egg contest. The event is held from 11 AM to 1 PM at the Stecoah Valley Cultural Arts Center in Robbinsville NC. 

North Carolina "Hidden Treasures" Contest

As you and your family celebrate spring by venturing to the beautiful public lands across North Carolina, Land for Tomorrow asks you to pack your camera or sketchbook. You might capture the right moment for the new "Hidden Treasures" contest.

North Carolina's natural wonders are known world-wide -- Jockey's Ridge, the Blue Ridge Mountains, the lakes and rivers, and more are renowned for their beauty. But there are also  scores of hidden treasures -- parks, gamelands, trails, creeks and other outdoor places that are just as inviting but not nearly as famous.

Everyone has their favorite hiking trail, park, river, greenway or gameland. These are the places one goes  to enjoy nature and escape for a while. They may not get the attention of NC's more famous outdoor attractions, but are just as special.

You are invited  to help put these Hidden Treasures on the map. Starting today and continuing through April 24, Land for Tomorrow is accepting submissions of original photos and illustrations of publicly-accessible natural lands. Photos, including wildlife, will be accepted and shots and illustrations of people enjoying these public lands are encouraged.

As an added bonus, our friends at Great Outdoor Provision Co. have generously donated prizes for the winners in both the photography and illustration categories.

Images may be submitted from now through April 24  2012 via one of the following:

Facebook as a message with an attachment:;
Email:; or
Pinterest: (send  the link to the image you'd like to be pinned via email or Facebook message)

Additional details will be posted on the website at

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Flat Rock Cinema Holds 2nd Annual NCAA Benefit

April 2  doors open at  Monday at 7 PM for  the NCAA championship game in high definition on the big screen at the Flat Rock Cinema. Proceeds benefit the Henderson County Hunger Coalition. The event is sponsored by Flat Rock Cinema, the Hendersonville Lions Club and Morris Broadband. Tickets are a suggested minimum of $10

A live auction will happen at half time and the cinema's full food and beverage MENU, including beer, wine and cocktails, will be available. Tickets are available by calling John  at 828-702-3317. Last year over $2,000 was raised for Meals on Wheels so let's try to top that! There are still some tickets left so get yours today!

Get more information on the Flat Rock Visitor Guide

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

The Grove Arcade Hosts ASAP's CSA Fair

March 29 form 3 PM to 6 PM - Find Your Farmer at ASAP’s CSA Fair at the Grove Arcade. CSA subscribers receive a weekly box of fresh, locally-grown, great-tasting produce or meats throughout the growing season. ASAP’s CSA Fair is an opportunity for community members to meet farmers face-to-face and learn more about their CSA programs and products. This is a free event and open to the public.

The first CSA Fair was held in 2011 with 18 farm exhibitors and drew 400-500 visitors
. The CSA Fair is sponsored by USDA Farmers Market Promotion Program and the Grove Arcade. Attendees can sign up to learn more from farmers, or bring your checkbook if you are ready to subscribe. Groups from workplaces and congregations are encouraged to attend, as many farms will deliver directly to groups if numbers allow.

All participating CSA providers have pick up locations in Asheville. Those slated to participate are:

Aardvark Farm (Burnsville)
Bee Tree Farm (Marshall)
Blue Meadow Farms (Hendersonville)
Cane Creek Asparagus & Company (Fairview)
Cane Creek Valley Farm (Fletcher)
Firefly Farm (Burnsville)
Full Sun Farm (Leicester)
Gaining Ground Farm (Leicester)
Gladheart Farm (Asheville)
Harvest Table Farm (Old Fort)
Hominy Valley Farms (Candler)
Ivy Creek Family Farm (Barnardsville)
Jake’s Farm (Candler)
Long Valley Farm (Marshall)
Paper Crane Farm (Marshall)
Ten Mile Farm (Asheville)
A Way of Life Farm (Bostic)
Whispersholler Farms (Arden)
Wildwood Herbal Farm (Weaverville)
Winter Sun Farms (Candler)

Learn more about the Appalachaian Sustainable Agriculture Project. The
Grove Arcade
One Page Ave, Suite 270 in Asheville, NC

City Lights Bookstore Hosts Catch the Spirit of Appalachia Book Readings

March 30, 6 PM - Victoria A. Casey McDonald's newest book, "Just Over The Hill," will be featured. Victoria's book contains fascinating stories of the Black Appalachians who, although hidden away in small mountain communities, have made up an historic heritage in Western North Carolina.  Victoria has saved the stories, thus forever placing her Western North Carolina people into human history.

March 31, 2 PM - Barbara Woodall will be reading from her new book, "It's Not My Mountain Anymore."  Barbara graduated from Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School in 1973 and was one of the original interviewers in the Foxfire programs at age 15. She offers first hand accounts of profound experiences and mountain living.  She says: "Inevitable changes both to the landscape and its inhabitants clash dramatically with cherished memories of a passing era."

Amy Ammons Garza will be reading from her new children's book, "Said the Leaf."  Doreyl Ammons Cain, as illustrator for "Said the Leaf," will be on hand to also sign the books. "Said the Leaf," is actually a story encouraging the preservation of our natural environment, as the leaf carries us through season after season in the Great Smoky Mountains.  Fully illustrated by Doreyl in vivid color, the book is a true example of storytelling by the Ammons Sisters--bringing the story alive!

City Lights Bookstore is located at 3 East Jackson Street in historic downtown Sylva NC.

Boone Hosts the BANFF Mountain Film Festival This Weekend

March  30-31   The BANFF Mountain Film Festival    The festival features the world's best films on mountain adventure, culture, and the environment. Hundreds of entries from many different countries are submitted for inclusion. Of these films, they choose screenings designed to educate, entertain, and inspire you. Tickets are on sale at ASU's Farthing Auditorium and at Footsloggers in downtown Boone. 

The Festival takes place at Appalachian State University in Boone NC

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Flat Rock Playhouse Opens Season with My Favorite Things

March 28 - April 22   My Favorite Things: The Songs of Rogers and Hammerstein   The season opener for the Flat Rock Playhouse, celebrating its 60th year in 2012. Four singers and a forty-member chorus put a new spin on the music of America's greatest songwriting tandem. Enjoy favorites such as The King and I, Oklahoma, The Sound of Music and many more. Get a link and more information on the Flat Rock Visitor Guide.

Monday, March 26, 2012

Stories of Mountain Folk Podcast 3-24-12

March 24 - Stories of Mountain Folk, broadcast by Catch the Spirit of Appalachia:

Storytelling: Amy shares her "Coon Hunting" story, with assistance from Keith Shuler from Sylva, whose original song is "Sam Moody, Legendary Coonhound."
Creative Corner: Doreyl's guest is Kim Ross from Waynesville, who has a clogging team & talent for pottery (music: "Boil Them Cabbage" by Kort & Beth McCumber).
Stories of Mountain Folk: Carroll Smith joins Amy in this session, and tells of growing up in Macon County (Music: "My Carolina Home" sang by Ginny McAfee from Black Mountain).
Apple Butter: Nicole spends time with Nancy Smith from Asheville, who continues sharing her senior project on Appalachian woman (Song: "Rooster" by Nancy Smith).
Down Another Road: Judy once again spends time with Sheila Kay Adams from Madison County, who shares her poem/vignette, "Flowering Ivy," and plays "Frosty Morning" on the banjo.
Closing song: "Uncle Pen" by the Log Cabin Boys."
     Listen to the Podcast HERE

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Keigwin + Company this Week at Diana Wortham Theatre

March 30 - 31, 8 PM at Diana Wortham Theatre, 2 South Pack Square in Asheville NC - Keigwin + Company, A knockout fusion of pop culture and high art.   The smart, sexy, and entertaining works of Larry Keigwin gorgeously blend contemporary dance and cabaret flare with the verve of New York Fashion Week and MTV. The New York Times has called this provocative and engaging company “witty, kinetic and musically responsive” and “a parcel of pure explosive energy.”  Get Tickets and Read more...

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Easter Getaways: Murphy Cabin with mountain views

Murphy log cabin vacation rental -  3 bedrooms 2 baths, sleeps up to 8.  Wonderful mountain views, game room with air hockey, fireplace, large deck.  2 acres, easy access in gated mountain community.  $85 - $95 night, $600 - $665 week.   See cabin photos and rental availability

The Cleveland Institute of Music Performs this Sunday in Asheville

March  25   The Cleveland Institute of Music performs at the Thomas Wolf Auditorium.  Hosted by the Asheville Symphony Orchestra the program will featuring Edward Elgar's Cockaigne Overture, Alberto Ginastera's Concerto for Harp, Op. 25. and Igor Stravinsky's Petrushka. (BOGO price for BMC patrons)

The Thomas Wolf Auditorium is located in the Asheville Civic Center in downtown Asheville NC.

Friday, March 23, 2012

The Blowing Rock Museum of Art and History Celebrates Artist Elliot Daingerfueld

March 24 -  Celebration of Artist Elliot Daingerfueld at the Blowing Rock Museum of Art and History. The event will include refreshments, a special tour and a children's activity based on the artist's many sketches of animals. De-installation of the exhibit will begin March 31, so this weekend marks one of the last opportunities to visit the exhibit in Blowing Rock. An abbreviated version of the exhibit will travel to the Cameron Museum in Wilmington in May.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Weekend Rock Slide not a Problem in North Carolina

The NC Division of Tourism has been working this week with the N.C. Department of Transportation to communicate that all areas in North Carolina and several miles of the "Tail of the Dragon" on U.S. Highway 129 in Tennessee are open for visitors.

A rock slide over the weekend closed the road on the Tennessee side. The Division posted updated editor's notes on pages with content that relates to motorcycle tourism or the Tail of the Dragon to keep potential visitors alerted of the situation. Last night, TDOT maintenance crews completed cleanup from the rockslide and the road is completely open.

For more information, go to

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Riverlink Workday - Volunteers Needed

On Saturday, March 31, from 9  AM until 1 PM. or so, Riverlink will have a workday to begin preparing the RiverLink Sculpture and Performance Plaza for some BIG events. The Plaza will provide the venue for the  RiverMusic Series this summer. The Series includes six nights of music, beer and food all in the beautiful setting by the River.  There is much work to do in preparation and volunteers are needed..

The March 31 workday will involve mowing,  weeds wacking, removing dead brush, and more. RiverLink will supply gloves, water and tools, though anyone with a favorite weedeater, lawnmower or brush-hog is certainly welcome to bring it.

A donated lunch is planned, so RSVP to allow for adequate food amounts.

The property is about 1/2 mile north of 12 Bones at 117 Riverside Drive. Call Dave Russell
, Director of Volunteer Services  (828) 252-8474, ext. 11 for details and RSVPs..

Sagapool Performs in Asheville at the Diana Wortham Theatre

March 22, 8 PM at the Diana Wortham Theatre, 2 S Pack Square in Asheville NC - Sagapool, gypsy / swing world music.   Get ready for a healthy mix of good-natured shenanigans, and striking musical skill.  Sagapool serves up rich and brightly rhythmic gypsy-swing flavors of the world at large.  You;ll enjoy a bit of mischief from this six-piece band of multi-instrumentalists with a playful synch all its own.  The guitarist may jump up to join the bassist for a thumping four-handed riff, or the whole band could switch instruments on stage in this worldscape of tender melodies and joyous, swirling romps on stage.  Get details and tickets HERE.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Easter Getaways: Smoky Mountains Cabins and Rentals

Spring has sprung the the NC mountains and it's a perfect time for an Easter Getaway or Spring Break. There are a variety of cabin and vacation rentals from  which to choose. The rentals are a sample and were available for a minimum of 3 consecutive days over the Easter Weekend at the time of posting.  Check with the individual owners or property managers to verify up-to-the minute availability. Get more Easter weekend available rentals HERE.

Enjoy a creekside vacation in a charming cabin Log cabin by the creek - 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, sleeps 4.  Fireplace, hot tub, charcoal grill, HGTV, WIFI. Secluded location only 2 miles to Bryson City.  SPECIAL: Book any 2 weekday nights (Sun-Mon-Tue-Wed-Thur) and get an adjacent weekday night FREE.  BRYSON CITY NC    See cabin photos and details

upscale vacation home with great views Vacation Home with panoramic views - 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, sleeps 6. Wrap-around deck to enjoy the incredible views, gas grill, stone fireplace, gourmet kitchen, 46"flat screen TV. Close to the golf course and smoky Mountain attractions. $189 night, $1099 week. WAYNESVILLE NC   See rental photos and details

Chalet rental only minutes to Cataloochee Ski Area SPRING SPECIAL - $89 night, $475 Week until May - 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, sleeps up to 6.  Porch with mountain view, charcoal grill and the sounds of nearby Jonathan Creek. WIFI, Pet Friendly. Minutes to MAGGIE VALLEY NC. 
    See rental photos and availability

mountain views and easy year around access View of the Smoky Mountains - 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, sleeps up to 8. Mountain view, covered deck with gas grill, fireplace, game room, WIFI. Easy access to all Maggie Valley Attractions. $135-$155 night, $750-$795 week.  Get photos and rental availability

mountain top contemporary cabin with hot tub mountain viewContemporary Log Cabin with long range mountain view - 2 bedrooms, 3 baths, sleeps up to 8. Located on top of a mountain. Hot tub, game room with foosball and Wii, 2 gas fireplaces, pet friendly, fire pit. $150 - $190 night, $900 - $1140 week.  Check availability and cabin photos

The Flat Rock Playhouse continues its Music on the Rock Series

March 22-24  Music on the Rock Series: Sweet Dreams, The Music of Patsy Cline The 10 concert 2012 series produced by The Flat Rock Playhouse offers a celebration of music from country to pop to Sinatra. Held in the Flat Rock Playhouse Downtown (Hendersonville) Theatre, 125 South Main Street in Hendersonville NC.

Monday, March 19, 2012

WNC Chef's Challenge begins this week in Asheville

March 20 WNC Chefs Challenge - This week: Square 1 vs. Storm Rhum Bar and Bistro. Food and sport combine for the ultimate food fight. The Challenge brings together 14 leading chefs from the region and one secret ingredient in weekly battles each Tuesday from March 20 - May 22.

Diners enjoy six plated culinary creations (three from each team) that incorporate the secret ingredient and score each dish. The votes from the audience and a panel of professional chefs, journalists, and culinary experts are tallied. A winner is announced at the end of the night and continues to the next round of competition. 

This has become an exceptionally popular event, and advance reservation are recommended. Get a link for the WNC Chef's Challenge and other events on the Asheville NC Visitor Guide

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Stories of Mountain Folk Podcast 3-17-12

March 17, 2012 - Storytelling by Amy: "The Shadow of the Chicken Hawk" is the introduction to the show, along with guitarist Ron Smith's rendition of "Wildwood Flower."

Creative Corner: Doreyl's interview is with the Ross Brothers, Zeb and Levi, from Waynesville who play "Spotted Pony" on banjo and guitar.

Stories of Mountain Folk
: Amy talks with T.J. Walker from Dillsboro about his grandfather who worked with President Roosevelt (Music: "Happy Days Are Here Again" by Guy Lombardo).

Black Roots of Appalachia is introduced with Victoria A
. Casey McDonald, who interviews her daughter, Tina Casey from Sylva (Music: "His Plan for Me" by Kathy Collins Barber and her sister Betty Collins Brown).

Down Another Road:
Judy's guest is Shelia Kay Adams from Madison County, who sings a few songs: "I'll Fly Away," "Jerusalem Mourn," "Fly Around My Pretty Little Miss."

Closing song: "Sweet Hour of Prayer," by the McDowell Family from Canton.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Medieval Minstrels at John C Campbell Folk School

March 18   Medieval Minstrels   perform at John C Campbell Folk School. Vocal and instrumental music of the 1340's and the 1440's highlighting Medieval French poet and composer, Guilliame de Machaut, and Guillaume Dufray, Franco-Flemish composer of the early Renaissance. Enjoy Wayne Hankin, Mark Rimple and Marcia Young, members of Trefoil, an ensemble acclaimed for its exquisite performances of 14th century music. 

John C Campbell Folk School is located at One Folk School Road
in Brasstown - near Hayesville NC

Friday, March 16, 2012

Children "Break a Leg" in Tryon this Weekend

March 17    34th Annual Super Saturday Children's Theatre Festival   Wonderful, live, kid-centered entertainment will be hosted at four venues in and around the downtown area. Theater, music, storytelling, mime, dance, puppetry, and more. The costume parade begins on Melrose Avenue at 12:15 pm. Tickets are available at the Tryon Fine Arts Center box office.

Get a link for the Children's Theatre Festival and other events
on the Tryon Visitor Guide

Thursday, March 15, 2012

St Patrick's Day Events in the Mountains

March 16 - 17 SYLVA St Paddy's Day Celebration at Heinzelmannchen Brewery   The Leprechauns and Heinzelmannchen will come together Friday March 16 & 17 to offer you Mini Stout Floats - a combination of vanilla ice cream and Black Forest Stout. We'll also have Chocolate Covered Gnome on tap ($2) and for the wee little ones, root beer and birch beer floats are available - $1 Wear your green on March 16th & 17th and we'll give you 10% off your purchase (excluding alcohol).

March 17 BREVARD 2nd Annual St. Patrick's Day Block Party 
  6 - 9 PM. Join downtown Brevard for: a pot of gold treasure hunt, Irish dancers, music, face painting and you-be-the-judge downtown window decorating contest. Don't forget to indulge in Irish fare at all the downtown restaurants.

March 17 SALUDA   St Patrick's Celebration at The Purple Onion    Get your Irish on and join the celebration at the Purple Onion featuring traditional Irish fare; corned beef and cabbage, bangers and mash, Irishlamb stew and shepherd’s pie, green beer, chocolate Guinness cake, a limerick contest at set break, lively Irish jigs, reels and fiddle tunes from Skeeziks at 8 PM and pint specials all day.

March 17 SALUDA St Patrick's Day Fare at Saluda Grade Cafe'
featuring Shepherd's Pie with Lamb and Vegetables topped with Creamy Mashed Potatoes. Another yummy Irish dish that The Grade will have is Corned Beef and Cabbage served with Irish Soda Bread. The beer will be tapped and the Irish Music will be live.

March 17 NORTH WILKESBORO (Thurmond) St Patrick's Day House Party
  at McRitchie Winery and Ciderworks - afternoon of great music, wine, hard cider and fun . Celtic Elk will be playing traditional and contemporary Celtic tunes from 1 to 4 pm and Joey Marion will entertain and dazzle with his fancy Irish footwork. No admission charge - a $7 tasting fee applies and includes wine tasting, light Irish fare and a logo glass.

March 17 Rhonda Barrel Tasting with the Winemaker at Raffaldini  Enjoy a rare opportunity to sample wines from out cellar straight out of the barrel with winemaker Kiley Evans. This intimate, wine-focused event is limited to the first 35 Wine Club Members to RSVP.

March 17 NEBO Blarney Fest at South Creek Winery
11 Am - 5 PM Come out to the end of the rainbow at South Creek for a bit o' the Irish. A Leprechaun is expected to deliver some treats to pair with the wines. Make sure to wear green or you might get pinched!

March 17 HENDERSONVILLE 5th Annual March of the Leprechauns March of the Leprechauns, a St. Patrick's Day festival held in Historic Downtown on Main Street. It is a celebration of Irish heritage plus entertainment and a costume contest.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Brevard's Co-ed Cinema Goes Digital

The Co-Ed Cinema now has an all new digital system with the newly installed projector and sound system, allowing the theater to continue bringing current movies to the City of Brevard.
Why the upgrade? By the end of the year 2012 it will be almost impossible to get a 35mm film. Movie theaters around the country are upgrading to a faster, ecologically cleaner and easier way to present films to the public. According to Co-Ed Cinema owner Mark Peddy, "No one likes the idea of having to spend capitol of this amount ($75K) in a down economy, but it is what must be done to keep the doors open."

The technology is indeed much more environmentally friendly, from production to shipping; it saves energy and eliminates the chemical process of film production. A film weighs 40 to 70 pounds and has to be shipped to the theater via UPS. The digital hardware for a movie weighs 4-5 pounds. The cost savings of shipping the movie will be substantial over time. Programming the system to run the movie will save labor expense, because film projectors constantly break and the movie must be monitored at all times. It is not as nostalgic or romantic, but digital is a cleaner and more efficient system.

"In the future we will be able to get movies that we could not get before
," said Peddy.. "Often in the past, we had to wait for a movie to come off a bigger theater, now we can just order a download with the rest of the world." The
Co-Ed Cinema will still have its art-deco charm and hundred year old history, and will also continue to be around for enjoyment in the future.

Opening at the Cinema on March 23 is The Hunger Games,
filmed in Transylvania County.

The Co-ed Cinema located at 79 West Main Street in Historic Downtown Brevard. Get a link for the Cinema and more Brevard attractions HERE.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

The Mystery of the Trees at The Compleat Naturalist

March 16, 6:30 Pm - 8:30 PM at The Compleat Naturalist, 2 Brook Street, Historic Biltmore Village in Asheville, NC - An Evening with Don Wells, author of  Mystery of the Trees. In this program and book party, Wells offers an informal presentation exploring the subject of his unique book covering six years of research and documentation  in a segment of the cultural heritage of the Indians that is rapidly disappearing.

This is a story about curious, oddly shaped trees that were used by Indians to guide themselves across the North American Continent, to trade, to hunt, to communicate with other tribes and to gather plants for medicines. Some of these trees can still be found marking old Indian Trails. The research includes a program of Mountains Stewards called the Trail Tree Project, that has created a database to record information about trail trees across the American continent

This event is free and open to the public; light refreshments will be available.

West African Dinner and Drums in Asheville

March 21,  6:30 PM at The Market Place Restaurant, 20 Wall St. in Asheville NC - West African Dinner & Drums.  Chef William Dissen of The Market Place and Chef Nicholas Figel of Cyprus International Cuisine in Highlands team up for a West African-inspired dinner. The two award-winning chefs join forces  to prepare a gourmet, five-course dinner of West African-inspired cuisine.

Cassava fufu fritters, banana leaf red snapper with joliof rice, roasted goat mafé—the dishes of West Africa are as exotic as they sound. And nowhere in Western North Carolina is there an opportunity to taste the traditional foods this rich culture has to offer. The dinner will present inspired and elevated interpretations of authentic West African dishes, as well as cocktail creations. A performance of West African drumming and dancing will enhance this cultural evening.

Tickets are $65 (alcohol, tax, and gratuity are additional) and interested diners should reserve seats by March 18 by calling The Market Place at (828) 252-4162. A credit card is required to hold the reservation.

A portion of the proceeds will benefit Asheville-based, 33rd generation Ivorian djembe player and musician Adama Dembele, in an effort to help secure his permanent green card for U.S. citizenship.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Steven Rinella Public Lecture in Asheville

March 18,  2 PM at the Diana Wortham Theatre, 2 S Pack Square in Asheville NC -  Steven Rinella- author,  TV host, chef, professional outdoorsman and dedicated activist for protecting land and natural resources will host a public lecture entitled "Hunting for Food- An ancient path through modern life".  The discussion will be centered on hunting and gathering as well as exciting and even hilarious stories of his own adventures , all presented with a modern day reflection of our current food systems.

Blind Pig Supper Club will have a super creative menu of ’game and other odd meat’ hotdogs for purchase by Hardcastle Handmade Hot dogs at the event. There will also be a give-away of Four ‘golden’ tickets that will grant the winner VIP access to every Blind Pig event of 2012. Two lucky names will be drawn from the lecture guest list to be given two tickets a piece. The winners will be announced at the theatre.

Get details and purchase tickets HERE.  (Group discounts available) 

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Diavolo Dance Theater Performs at the Diana Wortham Theatre

March 13 - 14,  8:00 PM at the Diana Wortham Theatre, 2 s Park Square in Asheville. Diavolo Dance Theater performs its spectacular wizardry.  This renowned company’s dancers, gymnasts, and actors deliver a magnificent cinematic experience, thrilling audiences with one powerful image after another. By employing oversized, surrealistic sets and props, Diavolo creates a sense of daring and risk-taking that juxtaposes human fragility and survival, and,  accomplishes its metaphors of the challenges of relationships, the absurdities of life, and the struggle to maintain our humanity in the shadow of an increasingly technological world. 


Saturday, March 10, 2012

Stories of Mountain Folk Podcast 3-10-12

March 10, 2012 - Picking wild strawberries is the opening story by Amy (with a guitar intro by Jon Zachary from Cashiers); Doreyl's interview is with Brenda McAfee from Asheville, who shares her new song, "The Firey Fiddler." Then, Amy talks with Connie Anderson from Fines Creek, who describes how she does an old craft "Hairpin Lace scarfs," followed musically by "The Old Wood-Burnin' Stove" by Home Delivery.

The Apple Butter segment this week is by Nicole, who interviews Melissa Jackson from Marion about her large family who lived all around her as she grew up, followed by "Hometown Blues" by the Blue Ridge Rounders. Down Another Road with Judy takes you first to Asheville Park where Judy is teaching the kids "The Muskrat" song, then we go to Arden where she's teaching high school senior Nancy Smith how to sing traditional mountain ballads. The show ends with teenager McKayla Reece from Maggie Valley singing a gospel medley.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Chimney Rock Park Capital Improvements Updates

The stairways on the Outcroppings trail to and from the Chimney are being rebuilt at a surprising pace. The helicopter returned for its most recent trip February 27-28 to airlift more construction materials and steel support beams. The excitement continued that Monday with a WLOS reporter visiting to check out the progress and several military transport planes flying through Hickory Nut Gorge on training runs. It looked like an air show at the Rock!

Currently, the Outcroppings trail is on schedule to reopen in spring
. The elevator and Sky Lounge projects are making good progress as well. All the hard work the general contractors have been doing over the last year to improve the Park is evident. A special thanks is extended to the NC State Parks and the dedicated Chimney Rock State Park staff for their exceptional cooperation.

The Old Rock Café's reopening has been rescheduled for mid-March. The restaurant's winter hours will be Thursday-Monday, 11 AM to 4 PM. A few surprises and new features are planned for the Old Rock including recurring live entertainment and a famous American recipe debuting  later this year.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

"The Artist" at Flat Rock Cinema this weekend

March 9 - 15, 4 PM and 7 PM at The Flat Rock Cinema, 2700 Greenville Highway in Flat Rock NC. Winner of 5 Oscars and 3 Golden Globe awards, The Artist opens this week. The movie is set in Hollywood, 1927: As silent movie star George Valentin wonders if the arrival of talking pictures will cause him to fade into oblivion, he sparks with Peppy Miller, a young dancer set for a big break.

The Flat Rock Cinema is a locally owned clean and friendly bistro cinema, featuring great food, cocktails and local brews.    Get a link for the Flat Rock Cinema and other Flat Rock NC attractions HERE

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Appalachian Ski Mountain Hosts Family Days 50th Year Celebration

March 10   Appalachian Ski Mountain is  the only ski resort in the High Country with 100% of their  terrain open, including 3 terrain parks. Snowmaking has been in effect over the past 3 nights, leaving peak season conditions over all slopes. March is one of the best times to enjoy a day on the slopes, with moderate temperatures and excellent base coverage and snow depth.
50th Celebration Family Day at Appalachian Ski Mountain. The final “Family Days” continue ASM's 50th year celebration with:
  • Special 2 for 1 Ticket offer: Buy an 8 hour flex ticket on March 10th and get a free ticket good any day or night between March 11 and December 15, 2012
  • Live 60's Band on the deck (weather permitting)
  • Tethered Hot-Air Balloon Rides 1:30 - 3:30 $10 / 10 min ride (weather permitting)
  • The Sanctuary Massage Stations (50 cents / minute) 1-4pm
  • Free Professional Family Ski Portrait (Digital Copy) taken by Joshua Easterling Photography 10am - 3pm
  • Slopeside Burgers and Hotdogs on the grill 11am - 3pm
  • Free Junior Ice Skating (ages 12 & under) with paid adult / limit 4
  • Juniors per family. Offered at special morning session 9 - 11am

Brevard Music Center gets Grounds Renovations

If you have visited the Brevard Music Center Campus over the years, you will think you have arrived on a different campus.  It's simply gorgeous what is happening here on the grounds.

Views that were once obscured by years of growth now open up to reveal the natural beauty of the campus. Areas that were once hidden by canopies of aging trees are now easily viewed and enjoyed from the roads. And, a charming new waterfall exists in its hidden glory.

Tentatively named Lyric Falls, this manmade waterfall exists on the edge of Sonata Lake, across from French Quarter. An attractive footbridge now provides access across the stream to Carrier Pavilion where students and faculty have spent countless rehearsal hours since it was built in 1999.

Theron McCall Grading of Pisgah Forest, and the BMCA Beautification Committee have been working diligently to complete all of these improvements before the first concert on June 22, 2012. Improvements have been made possible with  the generous help from a BMC friend.

In addition to the Beautification Committee, there are numerous other BMCA committees helping to make Brevard Music Center a success. Volunteer oportunities are always availble - contact the  Volunteer Office at (828) 862-2124 or you can visit the website to fill out a volunteer form.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Another Good Reason to Drink Beer

The Altamont Brewing Company in West Asheville is sponsoring RiverLink for the month of March.  $1 from the beer of the day will go to RiverLink.   cotton mill poster

Just ask the bartender the daily beer selection and you'll help improve the environmental and economic revitalization of the French Broad River as a place to live, work and play.

The Altamont Brewing Company is a brewing company and bar with all the best Asheville has to offer. Known locally as “the bar”, the Altamont offers a wide open floor plan with regulation ping-pong, a foosball table and single disc-golf basket. A variety of musicians and dj’s provide weekly music plus open mic-night every Tuesday. While the brewing facility is still a work-in-progress, the Altamont has some of the finest locals on tap.

The Altamont is located at 1042 Haywood Road in West Asheville.

Cúrate Chef Vies for Best New Chef Award

The Annual "Best New Chef"  designation from Food and Wine is up for grabs this week. Ten of America’s most brilliant up-and-coming chefs have been nominated and can be voted for on the Food and Wine website. 

Asheville's Curate Chef  Katie Button is among the nominees. Burtton was nominated for channeling the skills she gained through her experiences at Jean Georges (New York City), The Bazaar by José Andrés (Los Angeles), internship at El Bulli (now closed; Roses, Spain)  to make authentic Spanish tapas.  Button was recently a semi-finalist for the prestigious James Beard award.  

The recently opened Cúrate is Asheville’s newist Spanish tapas bar, serving an all-Spanish cuisine including croquettes, patatas bravas and plenty of jamon. Cúrate, pronounced coo-rah-tay, means "to heal." Since its opening last spring, Curate has received rave reviews and now Chef Button  has made the top ten at Food and Wine. The restaurant is located at 11 Biltmore Avenue in Asheville NC.

Cast your vote for Curate Chef  Katie Button HERE. Voting is open through March 11, 2012.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Asheville Trolley Tours open for the 2012 Season

In some places the first sign of Spring is the return of the red-breasted robins. In Asheville NC we know that  Spring has sprung when the red-coated Gray Line Trolleys take to the streets along with the Asheville Historic Trolley Tours.

Stop by the Asheville Visitor Center to secure your ticket to ride either of the two excellent services:

The Gray Line Trolley Tours of Asheville - Look for the red trolleys. Two day pass with hop on, hop off trolley tours offering a fully narrated journey, highlighting the history, homes and hot-spots of Asheville NC.

Asheville Historic Trolley Tours - Look for the white trolleys. Asheville’s original and locally owned and operated trolley tour with hop on hop off privileges from a 2 day pass. Professionally trained tour guides will relate the history and lore of Asheville, combining humorous stories and historical information to create a fun-filled tour.

Get links for the Asheville Trolly Tours and other Asheville NC information HERE

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Stories of Mountain Folk Podcast 3-3-12

March 3, 2012 - The first hour-long program with 3 new interviewers: Amy tells her story about basic training while in the Air Force; Doreyl's guest is Luzell Wiggins Bennet, an artist from Qualla, and Amy then talks with a naturalist, Jeff Gottlieb from Whittier (Sheila Kay Adams sings "Camp a Little While in the Wilderness"). Krista Robbe and Nichole Jarosinski, two young interviewers with the segment called "Apple Butter," are welcomed to the show, with Krista's first interview with guest Angie Davis from Alarka about being a mountain girl (we hear "Been to the East Been to the West" by the Freight Hoppers).

Then, Judy Rhodes in her new segment entitled, "Down Another Road,"
introduces her mother Arbie Rhodes from Arden to our audience, ("Maybe" by the Muses opens this interview) and the two talk about Arbie's early years as a student and then becoming a teacher. The programs ends with "My Home is Across the Blue Ridge Mountains" by Earl Taylor & Jim McCall

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Volunteer Workday in Panthertown Valley

March 21 - Workday at Pantertown Valley. All are welcome to join us. Tools and instruction will be provided. Meet at the Salt Rock (west) entrance near Cashiers at 9:30 AM. 

Trail Work Days are the time to give back. If you  notice that the trails you hike in Panthertown Valley are worn deep from the tread of too many boots, you can do something about it. Volunteer at one ofthe monthly Trail Work Days to help maintain and improve these most precious trails. You won’t be alone. In 2011, more than 1,000 volunteer hours were recorded, maintaining the trails, bridges and stairs in Panthertown Valley, installing trail markers and bulletin boards, removing trash and invasive species of plants, and planting trees. Additional2012  trail workdays are April 21, and May 26.
Volunteers should bring a day pack with lunch, water, and rain gear (just in case). Bring work gloves if you’ve got them, otherwise extra work gloves will be available. Wear a good pair of shoes with socks when working on the trails with us.

Expect to hike about 5-6 miles – working along the way -  take a lunch break when stomachs start growling,  we usually finishing up by 3 PM. It’s a lot of fun and the best part is that you go home tired and content knowing that you just did your good deed for the month.
Panthertown Valley  is one of the most spectacular areas in the southeast with cascading waterfalls, trout streams, panoramic views, sheer granite cliffs, the headwaters of the Tuckaseegee River and the east fork of Little Tennessee River. This 6,300 acre backcountry area in Nantahala National Forest offers visitors a wide variety of places to explore and has become a popular destination for hikers, mountain bikers, equestrians, rock climbers, anglers, school groups, summer camps.

Friday, March 2, 2012

Tribal Grounds Coffee now in the Smithsonian and Benefitting LTLT

Tribal Grounds Coffee in Cherokee, NC, will be displaying her coffee in the Smithsonian Museum of the American Indian in Washington D.C. The Museum is opening an espresso bar in-front of the famous Mitsitam Cafe. They will be selling one pound bags of the Kuwahi Kawi coffee with 7% of the proceeds going to the Land Trust for the Little Tennessee (LTLT).

Purchase Tribal Grounds Coffee online here or stop by the shop at 938 Tsalagi Rd. Cherokee, NC

The Land Trust for the Little Tennessee
is dedicated to conserving the waters, forests, farms, and heritage of the Upper Little Tennessee and Hiwassee River Valleys.

Thursday, March 1, 2012

RiverLink Special Events Committee

RiverLink is calling for Volunteers for their newest volunteer group, the Special Events Committee.  Committee members will be asked to assist RiverLink at least through the summer, as in hosting a donor party in March, Earth Week events, a concert series through the Summer, and RiverFest, the biggest RiverLink event of the year.

Volunteers will take on tasks relating to a part of each event, and report progress to the committee. The special event committee will meet at least once a month, usually at 5:30 PM.

RiverLink staff will be working with and directing the committee, but outside help is essential to accomplish all RiverLink has planned. This would be a great opportunity for volunteers who enjoy or have experience in planning, and the folks who tell us, "I'd like to get involved but don't want to get in the water."

For more information about helping out, volunteers should call RiverLink's Dave Russell at 252-8474, ext. 11 or e-mail to

The first Special Events Committee meeting is Thursday, March 8 at 5:30 PM.
Located in Asheville's River Arts District, RiverLink is a regional organization spearheading the economic and environmental revitalization of the French Broad River watershed as a destination where everyone can work, live and play.