High Country Press

Published Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm
  • Comedian and Author Dr. Dennis Swanberg to Speak at Greenway Baptist Church May 5-7


    April 26, 2018. Nationally known Christian comedian and author, Dr. Dennis Swanberg, will be making an appearance in Boone, May 5-7 at Greenway Baptist Church. Dr. Swanberg, known as America’s Minister of Encouragement, will tell some funny stories from his childhood and his time as a pastor at First Baptist Church in West Monroe, Louisiana. He will speak at 6:30 p.m. on May 5, 10:45 a.m. on May 6 and again at 6:30 p.m. on May 7. The event is free and open to the public. Greenway Baptist Church is located at 880 Greenway Road in Boone between Walmart and the Boone Mall. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Appalachian State University’s Department of Applied Design hosts ‘Showcase 2018’ on April 28

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. The Department of Applied Design’s Apparel Design and Merchandising program will present “Showcase 2018” at Holmes Convocation Center at 4 p.m. on Saturday, April 28. This runway-style fashion show, featuring apparel collections designed by Appalachian State University students and faculty, is open to the public. Dr. Anthony Wilson, assistant professor in the Apparel Design and Merchandising program, teaches the Apparel Design Studio IV course where seniors design apparel collections for the main portion of the runway show. He looks forward to the event as an annual celebration of diverse student work, demonstrating skills in the development, design, production and presentation of a cohesive apparel collection. “This year’s Showcase is set to be the best we’ve ever had.” he shared. “The students have really put forth great efforts to increase the quality of their collections while simultaneously pushing the boundaries of their creativity.” / Read more…



  • Eleventh Annual Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame Dinner and Induction Ceremony set for June 9

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. The Wilkes Heritage Museum is pleased to host the Eleventh Annual Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame Dinner and Induction Ceremony on Saturday, June 9th. The Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame exists to showcase and preserve the rich musical heritage of the greater Blue Ridge Mountains area from northern Georgia to northern Virginia. The Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame educates, defines and interprets the history of music in the region with exhibits, an annual celebration of inductees, recordings of performances, and an interactive database. The 2018 inductees include: Jimmie Rodgers, Nationally Known Artist; J. E. Mainer, Pioneer Artist; George Shuffler, Sideman and Regional Musician; The Easter Brothers, Gospel; Hazel Dickens, Master Musician and Tradition Bearer; Galax Old Fiddlers Convention, Promoter, Organizer or Special Contributor; and Smithsonian Folkways Recordings, Recording Industry. The 2018 Dr. T. R. Bryan Wilkes County Heritage Music Award recipient is Bill Williams. The Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame Dinner and Induction Ceremony will take place at the Stone Center for Performing Arts in North Wilkesboro on Saturday, June 9, 2018. / Read more…



  • Sherrie Norris Lovin’ Spoonful Cooking Column: It’s Time to Ramp it Up


    April 26, 2018. The very strong member of the onion family known as the ramp, or more commonly known collectively as ramps, is among the first green vegetable to appear in the wild in the early mountain springtime. Ramps are still the subject of a number of mountain festivals held in Western North Carolina and East Tennessee, but I’ll always remember the one held for many years in my hometown of Crossnore at Jim and Jenny’s Music Barn. People came from miles around about this time each year to take part in the fun and festivities surrounding the mountain delicacy. Ramps have been known to leave a powerful odor on the breath, so don’t get too close to anyone after you eat “a mess.” By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Goss Wins Mini Late Model Feature at Mountain View Speedway; Cable wins 100-Lap Enduro

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. Rick Goss of Statesville highlighted the racing action this past Saturday night at Mountain View Speedway. He claimed the win in the new and exciting Mini Late Model division at the track. These sleek little racers are turning lap times faster than the full sized cars. Mike Cable was the winner in the action packed 100 lap Enduro held at the end of the event. / Read more…



  • Health & Wellness Wing, Seminar Schedules Set For Elevate Boone! Business Expo Next Wednesday

    April 26, 2018.  The Boone Area Chamber of Commerce hosts the 31st annual Elevate Boone! Business Expo, Wednesday, May 2nd, from 10am-4pm at the Boone Mall. The event is presented by Blue Ridge Energy This year’s event will feature a new Health & Wellness wing, showcasing 11 of the area’s top service providers and health professionals. In addition to limited screenings by some vendors, attendees will be able to connect with providers regarding scope of services, insurance coverage, and other benefits / Read more…



  • Fourth Annual Village Vision Festival to Rock Downtown Boone May 6

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. The Village Vision Festival is ready to celebrate community, local food, and service for a good cause in downtown Boone on Sunday, May 6 from 11 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Festival director Christina Bailey said Village Vision will provide all day fun for everyone, while simultaneously fundraising to help put fresh, local food on more tables around the High Country. “The festival is definitely a community collaborative project, it’s all volunteer-based,” Bailey said. “There’s going to be a bunch of local music, workshops, and playshops for the kids—we’ve got some fun dance workshops and acroyoga, and we’ll have arts & crafts vendors set up all along the street, plus local food and beer for sale.” By Luke Weir / Read more…



  • Free Workshop Biochar: Renewable Energy Source for Greenhouses Happens This Sunday

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. On Sunday, April 29th, 2018 at 3:00 PM join Springhouse Farm and Against the Grain Farm as they walk us through the Nexus Biochar system and share with us the great benefits it may have for a farmer. The Biochar System is a source of renewable energy for heating greenhouses and producing small-scale biochar material. The bioenergy research team at Appalachian State University has built pilot systems at two local cooperative farms: Against the Grain Farm and Springhouse Farm. / Read more…



  • MerleFest 2018 Starts Today at 2:30 P.M.

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 26, 2018. MerleFest is here! The festival, presented by Window World, kicks off Thursday, April 26, at 2:30 p.m., and runs through Sunday, April 29; an estimated 75,000+ participants will gather at this year’s annual homecoming of musicians and music lovers to celebrate the world renowned MerleFest. With over 120 artists performing on 13 stages spread across campus, MerleFest fans have come to expect the unexpected. Late night jam sessions, band competitions, special guests onstage, impromptu dance parties and one-time-only musical collaborations are all a part of the fabric of MerleFest – and a testament to the enduring vision of Doc Watson and the Watson family. / Read more…



  • Conversation with Avery Fire Commission Chairman Bill Beuttell

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    April 26, 2018. The below interview was conducted with Avery County Fire Commission chairman Bill Beuttell about various topics including the commission’s role, its operating procedures and its achievements, challenges and future goals. High Country Press gives special thanks to Avery Fire Departments Coordinator Charlie Franklin for his assistance with this article. HCP (High Country Press): What is your personal background and what does your practical experiences in county service entail? Beuttell: I’ve been an Avery County resident for 37 years. I’m a Christmas tree farmer. I served three terms as a County Commissioner. I’m also currently a supervisor on Avery Soil and Water board (elected) and I serve as chairman of the Blue Ridge RC&D. I’m a college graduate. And I’ve been married for 37 years to wife, B.J., and we have two sons, Will and Adam. By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Watauga Education Foundation Presents Shooting Stars 2018 on April 27 at Schaefer Center


    April 25, 2018. The Watauga Education Foundation presents Shooting Stars 2018, a county-wide talent show case featuring students from Watauga County Schools. The Shooting Stars performance will be Friday, April 27th at 6:30 pm at ASU’s Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts. Visual artists will be included in the talent showcase. The artwork from these students is being displayed at the Jones House during the month of April. Shooting Stars will feature 27 performances from talented students in Watauga County. Here’s the lineup for the remainder of the evening: / Read more…



  • Weekly Crime Reports: Activity and Arrests in Boone, April 16 – April 22

    April 25, 2018. Looking to stay up-to-date on what’s happening in your neighborhood? Want to keep an eye on criminal activity in your area? Take a look at these recent incident and arrest reports from the Boone Police Department. Read more…
    Compiled by Nathan Ham



  • Tweetsie Railroad Transforms into Letterland to Celebrate the Joy of Reading

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 25, 2018. Calling all budding readers! Tweetsie Railroad is transforming into Letterland®, where young learners can play with their favorite Letterland characters while improving their reading skills. This year’s magical transformation will happen on May 7-10 and May 15-17 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. During Letterland, popular characters like Harry Hat Man, Red Robot and Clever Cat engage with guests, providing children with a visual memory and serving as a motivator to continue learning. The Letterland method of using characters and actions to teach phonics has been proven to provide a systematic and encouraging framework for developing full literacy with children ages three to eight. Not only are the Letterland characters friends with the young learners, but they are also learning tools! Each Letterland character has a unique personality and lives in a realistic environment with alliterative objects. / Read more…



  • Watauga County Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s Come Together for National Women Build Week 2018

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 25, 2018. For the 11th year, Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s are engaging women nationwide to work together to build Habitat homes during this year’s National Women Build Week from May 5-13. In preparation for the build week, Watauga Habitat for Humanity and Lowe’s have asked women to get involved by signing up to volunteer and build. The women of Mast General Store, Professional Women Builders of the High Country, Keller-Williams and the women of St. Luke’s Episcopal Church will volunteer throughout the week at Habitat’s GreenWood neighborhood. On Saturday, May 5, to kick-off 2018 Women Build Week, several high-profile Watauga women leaders will visit the Habitat build site and lend their voice of support. Lunch will be provided by F.A.R.M. Café. / Read more…



  • Today’s Email Announcements

    What’s going on in your community? Here’s a brief update on the emails we received today. Check back each day for an updated list of events going on in the area. As always, please feel free to email us about your event or update.

    Read more…
    Compiled by Nathan Ham



  • High Country Soccer Association Travel Team Tryouts are May 22-23

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 25, 2018. Are you interested in joining a travel soccer team? High Country Soccer Association will be hosting tryouts on May 22 and 23 for the 2018/2019 year for players aged U10-U18 (birth years 2008-2000). Tryouts will be held at Ted Mackorell Soccer Complex on Brookshire Road in Boone. High Country Soccer Association, which opened in 1986, offers soccer training to youth ranging from U6 to U18 and competes in the North Carolina Youth Soccer Association. HCSA also operates adult leagues and winter futsal youth training. In all, HCSA has more than 600 youth players and more than 250 adult players from Avery, Ashe, Caldwell, Wilkes, and Watauga Counties. / Read more…



  • Get Your Head Wet at Valle Crucis Community Park; American Fisheries Grant Promotes Aquatic Exploration

    April 24, 2018.  Valle Crucis Community Park will offer masks and snorkels for visitors to explore local waterways this summer, thanks to a grant from the North Carolina Chapter of the American Fisheries Society. The snorkels were provided by Two World Divers of Boone, and will be available for checkout from the park office. According to Kevin Hining, Northern Mountain Education Specialist with the North Carolina Wildlife Resources Commission, “The snorkels will provide an excellent opportunity for park visitors to better explore the many unique aquatic critters in the Watauga River.” Snorkel users should exercise caution when moving rocks or other aquatic habitat so as not to disturb these vital ecosystems. “Moving too many rocks can change the environment in ways that could potentially harm delicate species such as salamanders and insect larvae. Carefully turning over rocks to see what lies beneath is the goal,” according to Andy Hill, Watauga Riverkeeper and Valle Crucis Community Park Board Member. / Read more…



  • Chetola Resort’s Corkscrew & Brew 5K, part of SAVOR Blowing Rock, will be held Saturday, May 5

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 24, 2018. Combine your love of wine, craft brews and running (or purposeful walking!) in the name of a great charity. Chetola Resort’s Corkscrew & Brew 5K will be held Saturday, May 5 at 9 a.m. at Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock. The challenging, undulating 3.1-mile course takes runners throughout the picturesque Chetola grounds, circles the condominiums and winds around Chetola Lake. The race ends on a downhill and funnels back into the upper Timberlake’s Restaurant lot. One of the signature events of SAVOR Blowing Rock: A Celebration of Food & Drink (May 3-6), the Corkscrew features a division that includes four “hydrating” stations with the runner’s choice of a shot of Timberlake’s wine or craft beer from award-winning Appalachian Mountain Brewery (must be 21 or older). Because not everyone is keen on an early morning booze run, the event also serves up a wine and beer free-division for those who either have winning on their minds or simply want to enjoy the spirited atmosphere and the scenic course.  / Read more…



  • Rain Continues to Fall Across the High Country; Flood Warning in Effect for Watauga County until 8 p.m.


    April 24, 2018. Boone has gotten just over 3.5 inches of rain out of this storm that has dumped up to five inches of rain in some locations throughout the High Country in the last 36 hours. The worst of the rainfall appears to be over with, however moderate and heavy showers have persisted through the area and a flash flood warning remains in effect until 8 p.m. Tuesday evening. Flood watches remain in effect for Ashe and Avery counties until 8 p.m. Drivers have had to battle ponding in the roadways as well as water flowing into the road from clogged up drains or small streams. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Gas Prices Continue to Creep Higher Across the State; Boone Gas Prices Above State Average


    April 24, 2018. As warmer weather starts to arrive and families start planning their vacations, it appears that everyone will have to factor in some higher gas prices in their budgets. The average price of gas across North Carolina has risen to $2.65 per gallon for regular, still below the national average of $2.76 per gallon. That price has increased nine cents per gallon over the last two weeks. “We believe the majority of Carolinians planning to travel this summer, will do so with a road trip. With more expensive gas prices on the horizon, travelers should plan now for the additional costs,” said AAA Spokesperson Tiffany Wright. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Watauga County Deeds – April 12-18: 39 Deed Transfers With a Total Value of $7,486,500.00

    Apr. 24, 2018. A look at the recent deed transfers in Watauga County. The information comes courtesy of the Watauga County Register of Deeds. Compiled by Debbie Carter / Read more…



  • First Quarter Realtor Sales up 12 Percent Compared to Last Year

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    April 24, 2018. Local Realtors enjoyed a strong start to the new year, with first quarter sales the highest in 11 years. During the first three months of 2018, local Realtors® sold 444 homes worth $113.65 million, according to the High Country Multiple Listing Service (MLS), which records all Realtor® activity in the four-county area of Alleghany, Ashe, Avery and Watauga. That is an increase of 12 percent from the first quarter of last year, and up 26 percent compared to the first quarter of 2016.  / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Rampage’ Movie is Fun if You Turn Your Brain Off

    Rampage
    April 24, 2018 “Rampage” stars Dwayne Johnson as a primatologist who has to save Chicago from the triple terror of an enormous genetically-mutated gorilla, an enormous genetically-mutated wolf, and an enormous genetically-mutated crocodile. Right off the bat you should know whether or not this is a movie you want to see. But if you still haven’t made up your mind, consider this: there are no fewer than three scenes where Johnson steals an empty helicopter. Is that a movie you want to see, one where The Rock steals three empty helicopters? It’s perfectly fine to say yes and it’s perfectly fine to say no, but I seriously doubt you’re anywhere in the middle. By Bob Garver. / Read more…



  • Winners Announced for the 15th Annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 24, 2018. At a reception at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts on Fri. April 20th, the 15th Annual Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition presented it’s annual awards for the winning images for this year’s competition. A partnership between Appalachian State University Outdoor Programs, the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts, and Virtual Blue Ridge, the AMPC celebrates the unique people, places, and pursuits that distinguish the Southern Appalachians. Attracting entries from across the United States, the Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition has grown into one the region’s most prestigious photography competitions with 1,053 submissions this year and viewed in person by many people at the Turchin Center for Visual Arts. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • 34th Season of An Appalachian Summer Festival Announced; Taking Place July 1 – August 4

    April 23, 2018.  Appalachian State University’s annual summer arts attraction, An Appalachian Summer Festival, announces the 34th season to take place July 1- Aug. 4, 2018. The 2018 schedule presents a diverse mix of music, dance, theatre, visual arts and film events and attracts over 27,000 visitors to the High Country each summer. Tickets for festival events go on sale online and at the Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts box office on Tuesday, May 1. For more information, visit www.appsummer.org or call the box office at 800-841-2787 or 828-262-4046. / Read more…



  • Missing for 2 Years, James Martin Roberts Still Dearly Missed

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 23, 2018. Two years ago, James “Martin” Roberts disappeared from Boone. Despite local law enforcement’s best efforts to find the 19-year-old student, months turned to years of searching have yielded no obvious answers. The last confirmed sighting of Martin is from security camera footage near the AppalCart bus stop next to Appalachian State University’s convocation center on Thursday, April 21, 2016, around 12:30 p.m. Since Martin’s disappearance, Boone Police Department, assisted by several other law enforcement agencies, searched exhaustively for any signs of Martin, but turned up nothing. A Facebook group started by his family called Help Find Martin Roberts is now almost 4,000 members strong. By Luke Weir / Read more…



  • Driver Still At-Large After Vehicle Hit State Trooper in Ashe County Last Friday

    April 23, 2018. The Ashe County Sheriff’s Office is still hoping to find the person responsible for hitting a North Carolina State Trooper on Friday afternoon. According to the highway patrol, the trooper, whose identity has not been released, was clearing debris on Idlewild Road near the intersection of Highway 16 when the officer was struck by a red Nissan Frontier sometime around 2 p.m. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Heavy Rain and Wind Expected Across the High Country; Flood Watch and Wind Advisory in Effect

    April 23, 2018. The workweek has started off with nothing but clouds and rain in the High Country, with heavy rains and wind picking up as the day goes along. A Flash Flood Watch is in effect for Ashe, Watauga, Wilkes and Avery counties until 2 a.m. Tuesday and a Wind Advisory is in effect for Ashe and Watauga counties until 2 a.m. Tuesday with winds gusting up to 50 MPH and winds steady between 15 and 25 MPH. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Watauga County Files Suit in National Prescription Opiate Litigation

    April 23, 2018. The Watauga County Board of Commissioners announced the filing of a lawsuit in the U. S. District Court against the manufacturers and distributors of prescription opioids. The Board previously passed a resolution declaring the opioid crisis a public nuisance and found that the County expends taxpayer funds to respond to the serious public health and safety crisis involving opioid addiction and death. The county declared that they’ve received information indicating manufacturers and distributors of opioids have distributed opioids in violation of law thereby allowing the diversion of opioids for illicit purposes. Board Chairman, John Welch, stated, “In 1999 our county had one opiate related death but by 2016 we had 6 such deaths.   That’s a 500% increase in opiate deaths not to mention all the increased deaths in the years since 1999. Clearly, there has been a severe human cost in lives lost and those forever affected by opioid addiction.   But we also have substantial costs just from added expenses for law enforcement, DSS and the Health and Mental Health Departments dealing with this epidemic.” / Read more…



  • Today’s Email Announcements

    What’s going on in your community? Here’s a brief update on the emails we received today. Check back each day for an updated list of events going on in the area. As always, please feel free to email us about your event or update.

    Read more…
    Compiled by Nathan Ham



  • Meet the Candidates, Enjoy Coffee and Cake at F.A.R.M. Café April 23 Starting at 5 p.m.

    April 16, 2018.   The Coffee, Cake and Candidates forum at F.A.R.M. Café on the evening of Monday, April 23, will allow local voters a chance to meet and learn about candidates for various political offices in upcoming midterm primary elections, according to an event announcement from the Boone Area Chamber of Commerce. A number of political candidates, including incumbent U.S. House Representative Virginia Foxx, will engage in a round-robin style question and answer forum following a round of two-minute introductory statements starting at 5 p.m., the statement said. By Luke Weir / Read more…



  • Sherrie Norris Lovin’ Spoonful Cooking Column: Honoring My Favorite, The Grilled Cheese


    April 23, 2018. April is National Grilled Cheese Month, along with pretzel month, pecan month, fresh Florida tomato month — and the list goes on. Yes, folks, it’s true. Many months and days of the year are dedicated to our favorite treats. Sorry, I missed telling you about April 2 — it was National Peanut Butter and Jelly Day. We still have time to celebrate National Oatmeal Cookie Day on April 30, but we have to share it with Raisin Day and Mr. Potato Head Day. I couldn’t make this up! For the moment, it’s all about my all-time favorite. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Professional, Community-Minded Theater in the High Country; Ensemble Stage Prepares For New Season

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    April 23, 2018. “I can’t think of anything, with doing what I do, that I don’t look forward to, which is pretty awesome.” Gary Smith, the artistic director of Banner Elk’s Ensemble Stage, cheerfully directs our attention to the stage and the auditorium facing it. In this intimate 99-seat theater, every seat feels arm’s length from the stage, and every sound crisply bounces across this converted gymnasium in the heart of the Historic Banner Elk School. It’s an intimate, community-driven theater experience Smith is eager to share with the community, a community that has given him and countless others the ability to do what they love right here in the High Country for nearly a decade. By Lauren Miller and Jonathan Ocheltree / Read more…



  • High Country Grizzlies Get Their First Victory with a 38-24 Defeat of the Triangle Torch


    April 23, 2018. High Country Grizzlies’ quarterback Darren Daniel threw three touchdown passes and ran for one more on the way to a 38-24 home victory over the Triangle Torch on Sunday. This was the first victory of the season for the Grizzlies, putting their record at 1-3 overall. The Grizzlies never trailed in the ballgame. Daniel threw his first touchdown pass with 5:12 left in the first quarter, a two-yard toss to Drake White. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • ACC Barnstorming Tour Coming to Boone April 27; Top ACC Seniors to Take on Local All-Star Team


    April 2, 2018. For 40 years, the ACC Barnstorming Tour has been a mainstay of fun hoops action in the High Country or somewhere close by. This year, the tour makes a stop at Watauga High School on April 27. While the complete rosters have not been announced yet, the team will have several talented seniors representing the four ACC schools in North Carolina. N.C. State will have a trio of seniors playing, including leading scorer and Charlotte native Al Freeman. Joining him will be forwards Abdul-Malik Abu and Lennard Freeman. UNC will be well represented by Joel Berry, Theo Pinson and Aaron Rohlman. Duke standout guard Grayson Allen will be on the team as well. Other team players will come from Wake Forest University. The Demon Deacons list three seniors on their roster: Mitchell Wilbekin, Terrence Thompson and Troy Rike, although no players from Wake Forest have been confirmed on the ACC Barnstorming Tour roster. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



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