High Country Press

Published Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm
  • “Runs for Buns” Fundraiser at Beech Mountain Benefits Colon Cancer Coalition on March 7


    February 26, 2020 Saturday, March 7, Beech Mountain Resort is hosting their inaugural Runs for Buns fundraising event to spread awareness of colon cancer and raise money for the Colon Cancer Coalition. More instantly, the hope is to embrace community member Kelly-Grier Costin and her battle with the disease. Kelly-Grier Costin is a local mom of three who is trying to raise awareness for colon cancer after being diagnosed with the disease over a year ago. “I was diagnosed with Stage IV colon cancer in July 2018; I’ve had over five surgeries and 40 rounds of chemotherapy thus far,” said Costin, “We hope raising awareness for this disease will help assure that no one else has to endure anything like that.” Runs for Buns is a simple concept: participants will solicit pledges per ski/board run, and donations will be made according to how many runs the team or individual completes that day.By Joe Johnson / Read more…



  • Weekly Crime Reports: Activity and Arrests in Boone and Watauga County, February 17 – February 23

    February 26, 2020. 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 Watauga County Sheriff’s Office and the Boone Police Department. Read more…
    Compiled by Nathan Ham



  • Boone Town Council Member Nancy LaPlaca Shares her Visions for the Future of Boone


    February 26, 2020 Nancy LaPlaca, one of two new Boone Town Council members elected last November, has a lot she would like to see done to ensure a bright future for the town. Many of her ideas involve cleaner energy initiatives, addressing tax revenue issues and doing a better job of taking care of the beautiful environment we are blessed with in the High Country. LaPlaca has had plenty of new things to get used to as well including learning about zoning and land planning and being able to coordinate what the council wants to do with town and county officials. “As a regulatory policy analyst, these issues are new to me, so I’ve had a steep learning curve,” she said. “The staff is outstanding and other council members are very helpful so learning is just a matter of doing a lot of reading and asking relevant questions.” One of the most recent concerns includes the tax revenue disparity that has forced the Town of Boone to file a lawsuit against Watauga County, which was announced in a statement from the town last Friday. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Sherrie Norris Lovin’ Spoonful Cooking Column: March 1 is National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day – And The Sentiments Spread


    February 26, 2020. I had no idea that I’d get sentimental over writing my cooking column this morning, but it has happened. March 1 is National Peanut Butter Lover’s Day, as a prelude to March as National Peanut Butter Month. Not a big deal, really. Or maybe it is. My oldest sibling, Gary Pritchard — a brother that I loved with all of my heart — loved peanut butter better than anyone I’ve ever known. He’s been deceased for 34 years, but I never open a jar of that creamy spread, or make a peanut butter sandwich or a pan of fudge that I don’t think of him. In fact, just a couple of days before his unexpected death — and my last memory of him alive —he was standing in my mother’s kitchen, leaned up against the counter right beside the fridge, eating some of my left-over peanut butter fudge from Christmas. A sergeant with the Avery County Sheriff’s Office, he had made one of his frequent stops in to say hello, grab a bite to eat and give us a hug before he answered the next call. Little did we know just how meaningful that visit would be. And a double whammy this morning, as I began writing Lovin’ Spoonful, my heart hurts for a dear gentleman who is experiencing serious health concerns in a Winston Salem hospital. Of all the years I’ve been writing this cooking column, and had a catering business for 10 years bearing the same name, Jim West is the only person who has ever greeted me with this: “Well, good morning, Spoonful.” He started that a couple of months ago as we met in our Sunday School class at church — and something that will stick with me for a long time to come. Many remember Jim all across the High Country as a long-time Kerns Bakery delivery man/supervisor and a favorite of us all. So, I dedicate this week’s column to our friend, Jim West, as I pray for his recovery, his comfort and well-being, (and ask others to do so, as well,) and to the memory of my brother. “Spoonful” loves you both. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • 15th Annual Hunters Helping Kids Banquet Set for Friday, March 6; Public Invited to Attend


    February 26, 2020. In a world where kids are the subject of heartbreaking news headlines practically on a daily basis, a group of compassionate adults in Watauga County is doing everything it can to shed a positive light on youth, encourage them and remind them that good things can and do happen. Such is the case with the High Country Chapter of Hunters Helping Kids, now gearing up for its 15th annual fundraising banquet, scheduled for Friday, March 6. Since the chapter was organized nearly two decades ago, its members have gone above and beyond in their efforts to teach children and adolescents some of life’s greatest lessons through a variety of opportunities. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Snow Arriving in the High Country Late Wednesday Afternoon; Winter Weather Advisory and Wind Advisory Issued

    February 26, 2020 The High Country should expect to see varying amounts of snow over the next four days, according to the latest forecast update from Ray’s Weather Center. Temperatures will start to take a drastic drop on Wednesday afternoon. As of 11 a.m., temperatures in Boone were still in the lower 50s. As the day continues on, temperatures will drop into the 30s and a brief bit of afternoon rain will quickly turn into snow showers this evening. Winds will also pick up speeds with gusts reaching over 50 MPH throughout most of the area. On Thursday, snow showers will continue through the morning before clearing off Thursday evening into Friday morning. Another round of snow rolls through the High Country on Friday night and Saturday morning before clearing off Saturday afternoon. Sunday looks to be the nicest day of the weekend with highs in the upper 40s and plenty of sunshine.   By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Civitas Primary Tracking Poll: Biden, Bloomberg, Sanders Tied One Week Out From NC Primary

    February 26, 2020 The first results of a special Civitas Poll tracking the North Carolina Democratic Primary for president, shows a statistical tie among former Vice President Joe Biden, former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, and Senator Bernie Sanders (I-VT). “This race is a three-way dead heat, and we’ll continue to track it as we get closer to Super Tuesday,” said Civitas President Donald Bryson. “It should come as no surprise that Biden has strong support among self-described moderates and African American voters. However, Sanders is enjoying strong support among white and 35 to 54-year-old voters.” The turnout model of the poll was fashioned after the voter turnout in the 2016 Democratic primary. The remaining Democratic presidential candidates are trailing considerably behind the three frontrunners, all needing to make up significant ground in order to meet the 15% threshold to earn delegates in North Carolina. / Read more…



  • Watauga’s Own Melody Howell Among 14 Child Hunger Hero Award Winners Honored in Chapel Hill


    February 26, 2020 On Wednesday, February 19, at the Friday Center in Chapel Hill, Watauga County’s own Melody Howell was among the 14 Child Hunger Heroes honored at the annual NC Child Hunger Leaders Conference. It was earlier announced that Howell, School Nutrition Manager at Bethel Elementary School, had been chosen for the award, but the actual presentation last week made it a reality, as she and her peers from across the state were formally recognized. Congressman David Price and North Carolina’s First Lady Kristin Cooper served as special presenters during the ceremony, which was emceed by Gerald Owens, WRAL-TV news anchor. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Avery High Again Dominates in State Wrestling Championships With 5 Individual Champions

    February 26, 2020 It wasn’t if Avery High would win the team title at the North Carolina High School Athletics Association State Wrestling Meet last weekend at the Greensboro Coliseum. It was just by how wide a margin the Vikings would dominate. They had five state individual champions, two state individual runners-up, one third place championship finisher and an over-all team title, which provide evidence of how much Avery overpowered the tournament field. Avery had seven wrestlers competing in 1-A classification’s individual final bouts February 22 and the rather impressive five state champions propelled the Vikings to secure their second state team title this month. Avery compiled a final total of 157.5 points, way ahead of the second place in the 1-A team rankings, Uwharrie Charter, which finished with 116 points.   By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Watauga, Avery Obituaries – February 25, 2020

    February 25, 2020. The following are recent obituary notices from Austin and Barnes and Hampton funeral homes in Boone and Reins-Sturdivant in Newland. / 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



  • FINAL WEEK, Winning Ski and Snowboarding Teams and Individuals from SMARL’s 2020 Season

    http://www.hcpress.com/?p=39556
    Feb. 25, 2020. The 2020 Sugar Mountain Adult Racing League (SMARL) is officially in the books with another great season of fun, friendly competition. Team Sugar took home first place in the ski division. Team members were Sean Mckee, Anderw Jochl, Wesley Aldridge, Kim Jochl, Gunther Jochl and Erich Schmidinger. First place in the snowboarding division went to Schooch Legs. Team members were Nick Sdrenka, Aaron Maas, Alex Ettinger, John Holder, Adam Thompson, Shane Bryant and Austin Burr. Bill Leonard of Ski Country Sports has been organizing SMARL races for over 15 years. “We’d like to thank Gunther, Kim and the staff at Sugar Mountain for everything they do setting this up every week. We have great conditions out there no matter what the weather is,” said Leonard. “One of the real treats is that most of the people here are the same people that started with us 16 years ago. We get new people every year, some people come and go, but it’s nice that everybody comes up and hangs out.” / Read more…



  • Last Week for Early Voting; Tips and Information on How You Can Get It Done

    February 25, 2020 One Stop Early Voting ends Saturday, February 29th at 3pm. You can avoid waiting in line on Election Day by visiting one of our seven early voting sites around Watauga County. Not registered to vote? You can also register to vote during the early voting period at any of the sites. You’ll need to bring proof of residence in Watauga County. Conveniently located in Foscoe, Deep Gap, Meat Camp, Sugar Grove, Blowing Rock, and Boone, voters that are registered to vote in Watauga County can vote at ANY site, no matter where you live. If you have moved recently and not updated your voter registration, your information can be easily updated at the early voting sites. / Read more…



  • A Sold-Out Crowd Enjoyed The 80’s Dance Party and Costume Contest at Beech Saturday Night


    February 24, 2020 A rockin’ crowd came out to Beech Mountain this weekend for the eighth annual Retro 80’s Weekend. A full schedule of events Thursday through Sunday brought big crowds to the High Country, especially for the always-fun Totally Retro Costume Contest and the late night dance party that featured tunes from the band Cassette Rewind at Beech Mountain Resort on Saturday night. It was a sold-out event with many sporting their 80s attire. The band had the whole venue dancing and singing along to all the classic 80s tunes. During the band’s break, the annual costume contest began with six semi-finalists invited onto the stage for a crowd judging contest.. / Read more…



  • Over 2,200 Votes Counted During First Week of Early Voting in Watauga County

    February 24, 2020 It was a busy first week of early voting at the seven early voting locations throughout Watauga County. A total of 2,217 voters filled out their ballots for the March 3 primary. The largest number of votes was counted at Appalachian State’s early voting location on campus in the Plemmons Student Union with 1,163 ballots tabulated so far. The second-highest total has been at the Watauga County Administration Building on King Street with 509 votes counted. Blowing Rock has seen 173 early voters, the western Watauga location has had 143 early voters, followed by Deep Gap with 90, Meat Camp with 75 and Foscoe with 63. Early voting will continue through February 29. Voting times for this week, February 24-28, are 8 a.m. – 7:30 p.m. and the final day for early voting will be on Saturday, February 29 from 8 a.m. – 3 p.m.   By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Candidate Conversations Previewing Four People Running for Avery County’s Clerk of Superior Court

    February 24, 2020 There is a highly-contested race to fill the position of Avery County Clerk of Superior Court in the 2020 election.  Four Republican candidates are seeking the position and they have more than 100 years combined experience working in the judicial system.  This Avery Clerk of Superior Court election will also take on historical note as it’s thought to be the first time four female candidates are running for a particular office and with no male candidates in a Primary Election in the county. All four candidates have worked in the Avery Clerk of Superior Court office, including three who presently do. Those candidates are:  Interim Clerk of Court Teresa Benfield; Assistant Clerk of Court Lisa Vance (who also has been an Interim Avery Clerk of Court); Deputy Clerk of Court Linda Webb; and North Carolina 24th Judicial District Trial Court Coordinator/Court Manager Theresa King. Individual “Conversation” interviews (our questions and the candidates answers) with each candidate can be accessed on hcpress.com following this story in alphabetical order of the candidates last names.   By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Teresa Benfield: Candidate for Avery County’s Clerk of Superior Court Race


    February 24, 2020 There is a highly-contested race to fill the position of Avery County Clerk of Superior Court in the 2020 election. Four Republican candidates are seeking the position and they have more than 100 years combined experience working in the judicial system. This Avery Clerk of Superior Court election will also take on historical note as it’s thought to be the first time four female candidates are running for a particular office and with no male candidates in a Primary Election in the county. All four candidates have worked in the Avery Clerk of Superior Court office, including three who presently do. High Country Press has interviewed each candidate – here is our interview with Teresa Benfield: / Read more…



  • Theresa King: Candidate for Avery County’s Clerk of Superior Court Race


    February 24, 2020 There is a highly-contested race to fill the position of Avery County Clerk of Superior Court in the 2020 election. Four Republican candidates are seeking the position and they have more than 100 years combined experience working in the judicial system. This Avery Clerk of Superior Court election will also take on historical note as it’s thought to be the first time four female candidates are running for a particular office and with no male candidates in a Primary Election in the county. All four candidates have worked in the Avery Clerk of Superior Court office, including three who presently do. High Country Press has interviewed each candidate – here is our interview with Theresa King: / Read more…



  • Lisa Vance: Candidate for Avery County’s Clerk of Superior Court Race


    February 24, 2020 There is a highly-contested race to fill the position of Avery County Clerk of Superior Court in the 2020 election. Four Republican candidates are seeking the position and they have more than 100 years combined experience working in the judicial system. This Avery Clerk of Superior Court election will also take on historical note as it’s thought to be the first time four female candidates are running for a particular office and with no male candidates in a Primary Election in the county. All four candidates have worked in the Avery Clerk of Superior Court office, including three who presently do. High Country Press has interviewed each candidate – here is our interview with Lisa Vance: / Read more…



  • Linda Webb: Candidate for Avery County’s Clerk of Superior Court Race


    February 24, 2020 There is a highly-contested race to fill the position of Avery County Clerk of Superior Court in the 2020 election. Four Republican candidates are seeking the position and they have more than 100 years combined experience working in the judicial system. This Avery Clerk of Superior Court election will also take on historical note as it’s thought to be the first time four female candidates are running for a particular office and with no male candidates in a Primary Election in the county. All four candidates have worked in the Avery Clerk of Superior Court office, including three who presently do. High Country Press has interviewed each candidate – here is our interview with Linda Webb: / Read more…



  • MerleFest Hosts its 20th Year of Acoustic Kids Showcases in 2020


    February 24, 2020 Over the past two decades, hundreds of young musicians have taken part in the Acoustic Kids programming at MerleFest presented by Window World. This year—the showcase’s 20th anniversary—young musicians from the MerleFest audience will once again step on stage and perform in Andy May’s Acoustic Kids Showcases. Some participants are just learning to play their instrument, some play just for the fun of it, and some go on to international renown. Put on by long-time music educator and accomplished multi-instrumentalist, Andy May, Acoustic Kids is open to any musicians ages 16 or younger who register online before March 15. Their accompanists may be any age, and mixed-age groups are accepted—including family bands. Music teachers often accompany their students, using the program to give their students a real-life performance experience that is difficult to find elsewhere. No matter their skill level, Acoustic Kids celebrates young musicians’ achievements, and each year, a stream of young musicians heads to Merlefest to create their own “Music, Moments, and Memories” in Acoustic Kids Showcases. / Read more…



  • Watauga County Deeds – Feb. 13-19: 36 Deed Transfers With a Total Value of $7,330,000.00

    Feb. 22, 2020. A look at the recent deed transfers in Watauga County. The information comes courtesy of the Watauga County Register of Deeds. / Read more…



  • Town of Boone Files Lawsuit Against Watauga County Over Sales Tax Distribution

    February 21, 2020 On Thursday, February 20, 2020, the Town of Boone filed legal action in Watauga County Superior Court in an effort to stop Watauga County from continuing to utilize a sales tax distribution scheme that is not allowed under state law. Multiple requests by the Town of Boone to the Watauga County Commission to return to a more equitable basis for dividing sales tax receipts have resulted in no changes by Watauga County. Due to this refusal, the Boone Town Council has authorized the town attorney, Allison Meade, to proceed with legal action. Without specific permission from the North Carolina General Assembly, North Carolina law prescribes only two ways that sales taxes can be divided, and county commissions are given the authority to choose between these on an annual basis. The per capita distribution divides the sales tax based on the population of the county and its municipalities, which the ad valorem method divides it based on the taxed property values. In April of 2013, in a split vote of 3-2, the Watauga County Commission voted to change the sales tax distribution method from per capita to ad valorem.  / Read more…



  • Ski Resorts Ready for Another Big Weekend After Record Crowds Last Weekend


    February 21, 2020 President’s Day Weekend was yet another great turnout for visitors at the area ski resorts with some reports of the most skiers they’ve seen in a long time. “We had a very good weekend, it was probably our best weekend certainly this year and maybe throughout Sugar Mountain’s history this past President’s Day Weekend,” said Kim Jochl, Vice-President of Sugar Mountain Ski Resort. Over at Beech Mountain, director of marketing Talia Freeman says that with the good weather that seems to keep showing up on weekends, they have big crowds throughout winter. “Every weekend has been busy, the busiest I have seen it in years. The customers have been happy so we’re pleased, Freeman said. Last weekend was also extremely busy at Appalachian Ski Mtn. Co-owner Brad Moretz said that they were having to turn cars away by 1 p.m. due to the packed slopes and parking lot. He encourages anyone heading out to Appalachian Ski Mtn. to purchase their tickets in advance online. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Nantahala-Pisgah Forest Plan Draft Opens For Public Comment on Development for 15-Year Plan

    February 21, 2020 The development of a 15-year plan for the management of more than 1 million acres of National Forest land will now incorporate public feedback. Until May 14th, the NFNC (National Forests in North Carolina) will maintain an open forum on their website for public comments. Now is the time to weigh in on the issues at stake in the new plan. With the recent release of the U.S. Forest Service’s draft for a revision of the Nantahala-Pisgah Forest Plan, a formal 90-day public review and comment period began last Friday. “We heard from a wide range of people and groups who use, depend on, and appreciate the forests as we developed the plan,” said Allen Nicholas, Forest Supervisor of the National Forests in North Carolina. “We’re sharing this proposed plan so the public can review it and provide additional information before the plan is finalized.”  By Tzar Wilkerson / Read more…



  • Visitor Restrictions Remain in Effect at Appalachian Regional Healthcare Facilities Because Of High Increase in Flu Cases; 217 Patients Diagnosed Locally in 21-Day Period

    February 21, 2020 As of Friday, Feb. 21, visitor restrictions remain effective in the Appalachian Regional Healthcare System hospitals–Watauga Medical Center in Boone and Cannon Memorial Hospital in Linville –to help limit the spread of the flu as the number of flu cases has dramatically increased in recent weeks. “Flu cases have shown a steady increase as we enter the height of flu season,” said Dr. Danielle Mahaffey, Chief Physician Executive for Appalachian Regional Healthcare System in a press release a few weeks ago. “The flu virus spreads mainly person to person through coughing and sneezing. For the health and safety of our patients, we are asking the community to refrain from visiting to help protect the patients in our facilities.” Community members may visit if they: Are 18 years or older; Are healthy and do not have the flu or influenza-like illness, and do not live with anyone who has been diagnosed with the flu or influenza-like illness. The medical teams at Watauga Medical Center and Cannon Memorial Hospital may make exceptions on a case-by-case basis for siblings of newborn babies and families of hospice or end of life patients.  By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Spectacular Spring at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts


    February 21, 2020. The galleries at the Turchin Center for the Visual Arts at Appalachian State University change throughout the year and feature compelling original art that is accessible to all members of the community. On March 6 from 6-10 pm, the public is invited to explore the galleries of the Turchin Center during the Spring Exhibition Celebration with the opening of five new exhibitions. This event is held in conjunction with the downtown Boone Art Crawl. Numerous exhibiting artists will be on-hand to meet visitors and provide insight into their intriguing work. The musical group Belleville Rendezvous will perform. Refreshments and a cash bar will be available and there will be creative art-making activities in the Moskowitz Gallery. This event is free and open to the public. / Read more…



  • Volume of Early Voting in Avery County Has Been High

    February 20, 2020 The Avery County Board of Elections is still reminding its residents that 2020 Primary Election Early Voting is underway in the county. And according to election officials, the county has witnessed a large voter turnout so far. Avery County Board of Elections Director Shelia Ollis said that a huge volume have taken advantage of Primary Election Early Voting to cast their ballots, which numbered 344 as of 12:00 Noon on Thursday, February 20.  That’s an average of approximately 63 per day. Primary Election Early Voting in Avery County began Thursday, February 13 and runs through Friday, February 28, excluding Saturdays and Sundays except for Saturday, February 29 when Early Voting will also be open. All Early Voting in the county must be done at the Avery Board of Elections Office, located in the Avery Court House Annex at 200 Montezuma Street in Newland.   By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • North Carolina Court of Appeals Temporarily Blocks State’s Voter ID Law

    February 20, 2020 North Carolina’s voter identification law took another step back on Tuesday after a North Carolina appeals court put a temporary stop to the law, siding with those that feel like the law discriminates against African American voters. Voters could already vote in the upcoming March 3 primary in North Carolina without photo identification. With this court ruling, the same may be true for November’s general election, depending on how long the court case is drawn out. In the ruling, the opinion of the court stated that the law “speaks more of an intention to target African American voters rather than a desire to comply with the newly created Amendment in a fair and balanced manner” and that the defendants have been unable to show that the law “would have been enacted in its current form irrespective of any alleged underlying discriminatory intent.”   By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Banner Elk Fourth Graders Learn About Skiing and Snowboarding Inside and Out; One Wins Sugar Mountain Season Pass


    February 20, 2020 Resident mascot, Sugar Bear and long-time, Snowsports School director, Len Bauer, visited the Banner Elk Elementary School to teach fourth graders about slope safety. The students then spent a day on the slopes which kicked off a three week fieldtrip program. Following their time skiing and snowboarding, the children participated in the National Ski Areas Association’s (NSAA) Kid’s National Safety Poster Contest. Each student created a poster based on one or more of the seven elements of the “Your Responsibility Code” or one of the three elements of the “Smart Style” Freestyle Terrain Safety Program. Last week, winners were chosen and awarded prizes donated by Alpine Ski Center, Ski Country Sports, EDGE of the WORLD, and Sugar Mountain Ski Resort / Read more…



  • Watauga County Schools Close on Thursday in Preparation for Winter Weather Hitting the High Country

    February 20, 2020 Watauga County Schools were proactive with their decision to close school on Thursday as the National Weather Service expects snow to hit the High Country late this morning and continue through the afternoon. This is the eighth day of school missed in 2019-20 for Watauga County Schools. “Due to forecasted incoming inclement weather and out of an abundance of caution for staff, student, bus and parent drivers there will be no school on Thursday, February 20. Schools in Watauga County will be closed for students, teachers and all 10-month employees. It will be an Annual Leave Day. All 11 and 12-month employees may report on a two-hour delay to ensure safe travels to work,” the school system announced. The NWS issued a Winter Weather Advisory on Wednesday evening in preparation for this brief winter storm. The advisory will remain in place until 10 p.m. Thursday evening.   By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Blowing Rock Board of Adjustments Again Denies Wilmot Circle Owner Short-Term Rentals


    February 20, 2020. After a second marathon session of the Blowing Rock Board of Adjustments, the Town of Blowing Rock has again slammed the door on short-term rentals in the R-15 residential zones.   The decision came in the case of property owned by Chad Frazier, the 163 Wilmot Circle apartment building that has been the center of the growing conflict for the over three years Frazier has owned the property. The second session of the appeal began at 5:30pm with BOA Interim Chair E.B. Springs joking that there was a very important basketball game on at 9 that he wanted to be home in time to see. But like the marathon session that began this hearing late on the afternoon of January 15th and was recessed at 11pm, this one wouldn’t be decided until after midnight on 2/20/2020. / Read more…



  • Appalachian Adventure Achievement Award Accepting Nominations Through March 3rd

    February 20, 2020 It’s that time of year again!  Appalachian State University’s Outdoor Programs presents the Appalachian Adventure Achievement Award (A4).  Through the A4, our goal is to positively inspire more youth to adopt a healthy, supportive, and active outdoor lifestyle.  This will in turn support their current and future well-being. We also want to acknowledge young people and their passion and pursuits so that our community can celebrate them.  These individuals can inspire others to join them in living active, healthy, and adventurous lives. The A4/Appalachian Adventure Achievement Award recognizes individuals who exemplify the outdoor lifestyle. / Read more…



  • LETTERS / Making Sure Rural Gets Counted: Census 2020

    February 20, 2020 Letters to the Editor. BY COLIN WILLIAMS / At the Rural Center, we’ve had the privilege to work in communities all across rural North Carolina, and we’ve seen firsthand that it’s not the size or location of a town that makes it a great place to live and raise a family, it’s the people who make it a community. However, people are only one essential ingredient for thriving rural communities. The other part? Well, that’s a more complicated question, but it boils down to a combination of resources and representation. The 2020 Census will be a defining moment for our state, but especially for the people who call the 80 rural counties in North Carolina home. Why? Read more…



  • Local Luthier Chris Capozzoli to Present His Guitar-Making Process at BRAHM on February 27th


    February 20, 2020 On Thursday, February 27th, 2020, from 11:00am – 12:00pm, the Blowing Rock Art & History Museum will present a talk by local luthier Chris Capozzoli. Chris will describe the processes behind building his unique boutiqe guitars that are currently featured in the Museum’s exhibition Sound Machines: Stringed Instruments by the Capozzoli Guitar Company. Participants will learn about the creative and construction process behind Capozzoli’s guitar construction, focusing on his electric archtop and acoustic archtop designs. He will also present a brief history of the guitar and how to select the best woods for optimal sound. Chris Capozzoli is a musician, woodworker, and luthier based out of Sugar Grove, North Carolina. / Read more…



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