High Country Press

Published Thursday, February 2, 2012 at 4:53 pm
  • 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 Community Health Prepared to Help You Navigate the Health Insurance Marketplace

    November 12, 2019. If you have ever had questions or concerns about signing up for the right health insurance plan through the Affordable Care Act Marketplace, now is the time to put those concerns to rest. Alex Noriega at High Country Community Health in Boone is here to help. “We don’t pressure people to sign up for anything. We’re not brokers, so we’re not making a commission or anything. We are certified application counselors here to help people,” said Noriega. Each year, uninsured individuals visit the online health insurance marketplace to look at the numerous plans available and choose the one that best fits their needs. However, many times it is much easier and cheaper if you use the free help offered by these certified counselors to make sure you are getting the coverage you want. “It’s through the marketplace where people can sign up for their health insurance and apply for a tax credit based on household income and household size,” said Noriega. “Once we finish the application, it is a real-time process so they are able to immediately see the plans offered to them through the marketplace. I highly recommend people come in and look at all the options being offered, you never know if you might be able to save some money.”  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • App State Theater and Dance Ensemble Ends Year on the Right Foot with 2019 FADE from Nov. 20-24


    November 12, 2019. The Appalachian State University Department of Theatre and Dance presents the 2019 Fall Appalachian Dance Ensemble (FADE). This dance showcases features eight pieces having world premiere performances this month. The production takes place in the Valborg Theatre  at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 20 through Saturday, Nov. 23, with a 2 p.m. matinee on Sunday, Nov. 24. All shows are general admission and ticket prices are $17 for adults, $15 for faculty and staff, and $10 for students. For more information, call the Schaefer Center box office at 800-841-ARTS (2787) or visit the website. / Read more…



  • High Country Home Sales for the Year Peak in October; Over 2,100 Homes Sold So Far in 2019


    November 12, 2019. The busy summer selling season has yet to end for local Realtors, with sales in October at a 14-month high. It was the third consecutive month of near-record sales for members of the High Country Association of Realtors, which represents real estate professionals in Alleghany, Ashe, Avery and Watauga counties. They sold more homes in August, September and October than all but one other month since 2005. The median sold price in each of those three months – the price point at which half of all homes sold above or below – was above $240,000. That’s according to the High Country Multiple Listing Service (MLS). Going back to May, local Realtors have sold more than 200 homes each month, peaking in October when they sold 290 residential and multi-family homes worth $86.12 million. Dating back to 2005, only in August 2018 have Realtors sold as many homes in a month (295). / Read more…



  • Reaching The World With A Shoebox Nov. 18-25: National Collection Week For Operation Christmas Child Sponsored by Samaritans Purse


    November 12, 2019. If you ever thought it was impossible to make a difference in the world from the comfort of your home, think again. One of the easiest opportunities to impact the world — and especially, its children — is practically at your fingertips and at your front door. By participating in the annual Operation Christmas Child Shoebox project, sponsored by the Boone-based ministry of Samaritans Purse, you might give a child the first gift he or she has ever received. OCC is considered the world’s largest Christmas outreach of its kind, having delivered more than 168 million gift -filled shoeboxes to millions of children affected by war, poverty, natural disasters and other crisis in more than 160 countries and territories. Last year alone, more than 8.8 million shoeboxes were collected in the United States for distribution, with more than 10.6 worldwide. In 2019, the project hopes to collect enough shoebox gifts to reach another 11 million children.. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Movie Review: ‘Midway’ Film is Confusing and Only Mediocre, But Well-Intentioned

    midway
    Nov. 12, 2019 Veterans Day is not a holiday one typically associates with new movies, either in terms of box office or subject matter. With box office, there’s a clamor over which movie gets to dominate Christmas weekend, Thanksgiving, Easter, even the similarly military-themed Memorial Day, but ironically there’s not much of a battle over Veterans Day. In terms of subject matter, every year is going to bring a few war movies, but barely any of them choose to capitalize on Veterans Day, usually opting to open as a summer blockbuster or December awards-season darling. This year is different, however. This year, Veterans Day weekend was won by “Midway,” a war movie whose business strategy included conquering Veterans Day and not much beyond that. It beat out the too-late-for-Halloween “Shining” sequel “Doctor Sleep” by an estimated $3 million and the too-early-for-Christmas “Last Christmas” by an estimated $6 million. I guess the lesson is to open at the appropriate holiday. By Bob Garver. / Read more…



  • Willie Nelson & Family, Alison Krauss, and More to Perform at MerleFest 2020


    November 12, 2019. MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the initial lineup for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. The annual homecoming of musicians and music fans returns to the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. “For over 30 years, one of the major factors that has built and sustained MerleFest has been the quality of the artists and performances that our guests see over the 4-day festival,” says Ted Hagaman, Festival Director. “People truly feel that the festival is a great value and that is why music fans and families return year after year. We feel that the 2020 lineup again reflects the diversity and quality of performers, and we look forward to another successful festival in April.” The complete lineup for MerleFest 2020 will be announced over the next few months. / Read more…



  • Snow and Frigid Temperatures Arrive in the High Country with Low Temps Nearing Single Digits; Watauga, Avery and Ashe Schools Cancel Classes

    November 12, 2019. The High Country saw its first real widespread snowfall on Tuesday morning with Watauga, Ashe and Avery counties all canceling school for students. Some higher elevations saw between three and four inches of snow while areas around Boone, West Jefferson and Banner Elk saw a couple of inches that led to some slushy road conditions throughout the area. Classes at Appalachian State University were not affected by the weather, however, Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute’s Watauga Campus will delay its opening until noon today. The wintry precipitation will leave the area this afternoon, but the bone-chilling temperatures are just now arriving. According to the latest weather forecast from Ray’s Weather Center, the low temperature in Boone tonight is expected to drop down to 14 degrees. Higher elevations such as Sugar Mountain, Beech Mountain and areas around Grandfather Mountain will see low temperatures drop into the single digits.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • SMARL Racing Action Returns for a 13th Year on the Slopes; Registration Now Open


    November 11, 2019. The popular Monday night Sugar Mountain Adult Racing League (SMARL) is back for another wild ride down the mountain for the 13th year of good times, cold beer and friendly competition. Registration just began for a spot in the 2020 racing league which will begin on January 6 and takes place on six consecutive Mondays in January and February. Registration forms can be picked up in person at Ski Country Sports located at 3149 Tynecastle Highway in Banner Elk or give them a call at 828-898-9786 to register. The cost to join the league has remained the same for each of the 13 years at $40 per person. “We will typically fill up by the first of December so if anybody is interested in signing up, now is the time. This is our 13th year and it has filled up every year,” said Bill Leonard, the owner of Ski Country Sports and founder of the racing league. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • High Country Chapter of MOAA Presents Their 13th Annual Veterans Day Event at the Boone Mall


    November 11, 2019. Today, November 11, 2019 is Veterans Day. To celebrate the lives of those who have served and sacrificed in the military, the 13th annual Veterans Day Commemoration was held at the Boone Mall, and sponsored by the High Country Chapter of the Military Officers Association of America, the Boone Mall and the Watauga Community Band. The Watauga Community Band also led the event with a prelude of patriotic music, as well as the service branch theme songs, and the closing ceremonies. Veterans from decades of service were in attendance, stretching from WW2 up until more recently, those who fought against the war on terror. By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Watauga County Register of Deeds Office Extends Veteran’s Day Appreciation with Special Event Wednesday, Nov. 13


    November 11, 2019. For several years, the Watauga County Register of Deeds Office has provided much-needed support and encouragement to our local veterans, and this year is no exception. According to Amy Shook, since November, 2015, her office has provided the “Thank you for your Service” program, in which local businesses agreed to offer special discounts and services to veterans when their “Thank A Vet” card is presented. “Many of our veterans have already obtained their cards and have enjoyed discounts at some of their favorite businesses,” Shook said. “We are very happy and excited to announce that we have been able to add a number of new businesses to the list, including those in Watauga County and some from surrounding counties.” To show their appreciation to Watauga County veterans, Shook and her staff are hosting a special event at their office on Wednesday, Nov.13, from 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. “We will have updated copies of the list of participating businesses, as well have refreshments and treats for the veterans to enjoy as we try to show our appreciation to them for their service.” By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Melvin Norris, Veteran of Two Wars: “Invited” To World War II And Volunteered For the Korean


    November 11, 2019. Anticipating another Veteran’s Day observance, Melvin Norris was reclining in his chair on Thursday at Deerfield Ridge Assisted Living in Boone, reminiscing about his military career and looking forward to local upcoming celebrations. “I like to go to all of them that I can and I like to wear my uniform. That’s not something every veteran (my age) can still do.” But, Melvin Norris is not your typical veteran, either. While most served one stint in the military, he not only was drafted into World War II, (“I received an official invitation from the government,” he said with a chuckle) but later reenlisted during the Korean War and eventually gave 30 years to the Navy Reserve. At 95 years of age, Norris still has a clear recollection of those days — and he loves talking about his service. For any details that may escape him, he has scrapbooks and photographs that help tell the story, in addition to video documentation, depicting his service and a long life well lived. There is also quite a collection of commendations he’s received through the years, from the military, his church and various community organizations. By Sherrrie Norris / Read more…



  • Appalachian Musical Theatre Ensemble presents Mamma Mia! Nov. 15-17 in Legends Concert Hall


    November 11, 2019. For the eighth consecutive year, the Appalachian Musical Theatre Ensemble at Appalachian State University is producing an all-student run musical with the international smash hit Mama Mia! This jukebox musical is based on the award-winning catalog of songs by the Swedish pop music group ABBA, one of the most popular international groups of all time. Performances are scheduled in Legends Concert Hall on the university campus at 7 p.m. on Friday, November 15, at 2 and 7 p.m. on Saturday, November 16, and at 5 p.m. on Sunday, November 17. Tickets are $10 for students and $15 for adults and may be purchased online at appmusicaltheatre.com, in person in the Plemmons Student Union the week of the show and, if available, at the door one-half hour prior to each performance. Admission is $10 for students and $15 for the general public. / Read more…



  • Apps Hold Off Gamecocks to Post Another Win Over a Power Five Opponent, 20-15


    November 10, 2019. The Appalachian State Mountaineers held off a valiant South Carolina rally to beat the Gamecocks 20-15 Saturday night at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia, SC. Appalachian State moves to 8-1 on the season with this non-conference victory. The Gamecocks fell to 4-6. A last-ditch South Carolina drive ended at the Appalachian State 19-yard line. The Gamecocks lacked offensive consistency against the nation’s No. 8 ranked pass defense. South Carolina freshman quarterback Ryan Hilinski’s school record streak of 180 throws without an interception ended with 1:51 left in the second quarter when Nicholas Ross intercepted him and returned the ball 20 yards for a touchdown. By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Sugar Mountain Opens for Skiing on Saturday: First Skiers on Lift at 9 a.m. for 2019-2020 Season


    November 9, 2019. Sugar Mountain Resort opened for skiing and snowboarding on Saturday morning at 9:00 a.m. Skiers and snowboarders were showing up at the resort a little after 8:00 looking to get their first runs in for the season. Lifts opened at 9:00 as the Sugar Mountain crew put the finishing touches on operations to be ready for opening day.  Kim Jochl, Vice President at Sugar reported that for opening day they had six slopes open with three lifts running and from 5 to 20 inches of snow on the slopes. “We like to open as early as possible so we can be in business.” said Kim. “It stirs excitement and gets us rolling for the season.” / Read more…



  • Farm-City Banquet Brings Community Together for 64th Year of Celebrating Agriculture in the High Country


    November 8, 2019. A large crowd filled Boone United Methodist Church on Thursday for the 64th Annual Farm-City Banquet with an evening of music, door prizes, awards and an overall celebration of the impact of farming and agriculture in the High Country. The theme for this year’s banquet was continued over from last year, honoring all of the “High Country Grown” products that impact our lives in these mountains almost every day. “We decided to continue the theme of High Country Grown this year because it fits every single thing about this banquet. From the food to the music to the awards we present, to the entertainment, to the items in those baskets that we’re going to be giving away as door prizes, everything about Farm-City Banquet here in Watauga is High Country Grown,” said Jim Hamilton, the Cooperative Extension Director for Watauga County. “The High Country Grown initiative is helping local farmers while promoting restaurants and businesses that use locally sourced products. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Avery Chamber Annual Celebration Honored Exceptional Organizations and Individuals in Avery County on Thursday


    November 8, 2019. The Avery Chamber Annual Celebration was held at the Best Western Mountain Lodge on November 7 and was sponsored by the Grandfather Mountain Stewardship Foundation. The Avery Chamber of Commerce honored several organizations and individuals throughout Avery County during the proceedings due to their significant contributions to the community. Guest Speaker Jeff Davis, who honored each of the night’s award recipients with an introduction describing the recipients’ accomplishments, hosted the event. By Joe Johnson / Read more…



  • Avery County Rotary Club to Hold Veteran’s Day Celebration Monday at Best Western Mountain Lodge in Banner Elk

    November 8, 2019. In an effort to honor veterans of the Unites States Armed Forces and celebrate their service to our great nation, the Avery County Rotary Club is hosting its fifth annual Veteran’s Day celebration on 2019 Veterans Day–Monday, November 11th. This county-wide event will include a luncheon and special program for the veterans. This celebration will be held at the Best Western Mountain Lodge in Banner Elk, beginning at 11:30 a.m. and lasting until 1:00 p.m. All Avery Countians are invited to attend. Veterans and their family members receive a complimentary, free lunch.   The meal also will be available to other guests for $8 per person  By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Ray Russell Re-Election Campaign Rally for 93rd NC House District in Boone November 12


    November 8, 2019. Ray Russell, Founder and Owner of RaysWeather.Com, will launch his campaign for reelection to the 93rd North Carolina House Seat on November 12th. The Re-Election Rally will be Tuesday, November 12, 2019, at Ransom in Downtown Boone (747 W. King Street). The event starts at 6 PM with the formal program beginning at 6:30 PM. Ray believes North Carolina needs principled leadership that combines RESPECT for people, LISTENing to your voices, and LEADing with skill and honor.” Since January 2019, Ray has sponsored or co-sponsored 125 bills in the NC House and was the first Freshman Democrat to have a bill, for which he was a primary sponsor, signed into law. His legislative work focused on the issues he campaigned about in 2018. / Read more…



  • Visiting Writers Series at Appalachian Presents: Jacinda Townsend


    November 8, 2019. As the 2019 Fall Visiting Writes Series for Appalachian State University comes to an end, the last featured author of the event, Jacinda Townsend, will be attending her part in the series on November 12th. Townsend is the Appalachian Writer in Residence at Berea College. She is the author of Saint Monkey (Norton, 2014), which is set in 1950s Eastern Kentucky and won the Janet Heidinger Kafka Prize and the James Fenimore Cooper Prize for historical fiction. Saint Monkey was also the 2015 Honor Book of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association. Townsend grew up in south central Kentucky and at age 16 took her first creative writing class at Harvard, where she earned her B.A. While at Duke University Law School, she cross-registered in the English department and took several formative writing workshops. By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Veterans to be Honored During Multiple Celebrations Throughout Watauga County


    November 7, 2019. Veterans across the High Country will be honored during numerous Veterans Day celebrations, kicking off Friday morning at Parkway Elementary School. The celebration at 8:30 at the school is open to the public and is always one of the largest Veterans Day events that the Watauga County School System organizes. Appalachian State University will begin its Veterans Day tribute at 9 a.m. at the B.B. Dougherty Administration Building Veterans Memorial. This event, as are all of these events, is free and open to the public. Remarks will be provided by App State alumnus and retired U.S. Army Maj. Ali Donnell Davis ’95 ’01. A reception will follow in the administration building lobby. In case of adverse weather, the ceremony will be moved to the lobby. Maj. Ali Donnell Davis, of Charlotte, joined the U.S. Army Reserve in 1989. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Middle Fork Greenway Holds Grand Opening of Trailhead That Starts in Blowing Rock


    November 7, 2019. Yesterday, Blue Ridge Conservancy with its partners like the town of Blowing Rock, New River Conservancy, Watauga County, and local community businesses, revealed the trailhead for their new Middle Fork Greenway path. While funding for the Greenway path has come through a variety of sources, it has been a main part of the NCDOT Hwy 321 widening project, so all infrastructure used for construction was provided by the NCDOT. Mike Pettyjohn, NCDOT District Engineer, commented a little about the importance of the project from the state’s point of view, saying, “Whenever possible, the NCDOT supports pedestrian infrastructure in our community projects. It’s one of the most cost-effective ways to get these capital projects completed.” By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Watauga County Deeds – Oct. 24-30: 60 Deed Transfers With a Total Value of $13,675,000.00

    Nov. 7, 2019. 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…



  • Superior Court Judge Denies Injunction by Plaintiffs Attempting to Stop Land Purchase for Valle Crucis School

    November 6, 2019. Judge Susan Bray denied a preliminary injunction by the plaintiffs in a lawsuit against the Watauga County School Board that would have stopped the land purchase for the property that the county is eying for the construction of a brand new Valle Crucis School. The plaintiffs in the case, listed as the Mast Farm Inn, Deschamps Holdings LLC, Deschamps Enterprises, Henri Deschamps, Marie-Henriette Deschamps and Danielle Deschamps, filed a lawsuit on October 10 against the Watauga County Board of Education, board chairman Ron Henries, vice-chair Brenda Reese, and board members Dr. Gary Childers, Steve Combs and Dr. Jay Fenwick with the hope of forcing the county to abandon its plan of construction a new, much-needed school on a 14.4-acre plot of land known as the Hodges Property. The county has the plot of land under contract, however the plaintiffs feel that the land is not the most suitable place for construction of a new school, citing environmental concerns having the school in a flood-prone area, the purchase price of the property, the appraisal used to define the property’s value and the protection of the Valle Crucis Historical District.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Weekly Crime Reports: Activity and Arrests in Boone and Watauga County, October 27 – November 3

    November 6, 2019. 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



  • World War II Veteran David Watson Dies at 94


    November 6, 2019. The death of David Watson of Boone, occurring Monday, Nov. 4, has claimed yet another of our local World War II heroes. Having experienced a rather rapid decline in health in recent months, Watson spent the last few weeks of his life in a nursing home near his son in Carthage. His contribution to our country, and to Watauga County in general, is not one that needs to be forgotten, especially as we are just days away from honoring all American veterans who fought for our freedom” Born April 20, 1925, Watson was the youngest of nine children in the Deep Gap family of General Dixon Watson and Annie Greene Watson. He was not only proud of his role as a veteran of the US Navy, but he was also proud of his family heritage; he loved sharing memories of his life with one of America’s most well-known musicians, his brother, the late great musician, Doc Watson. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • How App State Basketball’s Comeback Fell Short to Michigan in Season Opener


    November 6, 2019. Last night marked the return of college basketball across the country, including the start of Appalachian State’s 2019-2020 season where they began in Ann Arbor, losing a resiliently played game 79-71. While the Mountaineers started off struggling as they gave up 11 straight points to Wolverines’ center, Jon Teske, and found themselves down 46-25 at halftime, there were certainly some positive takeaways for Appalachian to consider postgame, despite the final on the scoreboard. Actually outscoring Michigan in the second half is one of these side notes, as App was able to get some offensive rhythm going in the second half, predominantly thanks to Junior, Justin Forrest. The 6’2 guard out of Decatur, Georgia, was the Mountaineers’ Number 1 offensive go-to as he ended the game with a total of 27 points on a phenomenal 47% field goal percentage at 10-21 shooting overall and going 2-5 from the 3 point line. By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Apps Travel To Columbia, South Carolina for Battle With the Southeastern Conference Gamecocks Saturday night


    November 6, 2019. After losing their first game of the 2019 season and the first in their last 13 games, the Appalachian State Mountaineers will look to get back to the normal winning ways when they visit South Carolina in a non-conference game this Saturday night, Nov. 9. Kickoff is set for 7:00 p.m. at Williams-Brice Stadium in Columbia, SC. The game will be nationally broadcast on ESPN2. For the second straight year, No. 20 Appalachian State took a national ranking into its game with Georgia Southern last Thursday night. And for as many years, Georgia Southern upset Appalachian State and knocked the Mountaineers from the national rankings. This year, the Eagles survived a fourth-quarter comeback attempt and claimed a 24-21 win over host Appalachian State at Kidd Brewer Stadium. As a result of the loss, not only did Appalachian State drop completely out of the Top 25 National Ratings, Coach Eliah Drinkwitz’s Mountaineers (7-1 over-all, 4-1 conference) fell into a tie for first place in the Sun Belt Conference’s East Division with Georgia Southern (5-3, 3-1) and Georgia State (6-2, 3-1). By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Blowing Rock Holds 12th Annual Hometown Harvest Potluck on Sunday November 10th at American Legion


    November 6, 2019. The Hometown Harvest supper is returning for its 12th year on Sunday, November 10th, 5:30 PM – 7:30 PM. This year it takes place at the American Legion in Blowing Rock, as a celebration of the Blowing Rock community and a chance for people to get together and share a meal. Attendance is free, and open to the public – one need not live in Blowing Rock to attend. All that’s required to bring is a covered dish of your choice. Attendees are also encouraged to bring canned foods and/or cash donations, which will be collected for Blowing Rock C.A.R.E.S. (a charity aiming to provide non-perishable foods to those in need in Watauga County) and Casting Bread Food Pantries (a self-choice food pantry and soup kitchen). By Adam Estabrook / Read more…



  • Sherrie Norris Lovin’ Spoonful Cooking Column: Holiday Countdown Begins Now


    November 6, 2019. Believe it or not, it’s time to start thinking about your holiday menus. Most of us “seasoned” cooks have already been doing that for days, now, at least in our minds, but when the Food Channel and other media begin featuring holiday baking contests and the center aisles of grocery stores are laden with spices, pumpkin pie fillings and chocolates, you know it’s time to kick into gear. I don’t like to rush from one holiday to another, but, as a food columnist, by not doing so, I don’t always get in all of the related tips and recipes that I like to share. Yes, it is unbelievable that we are already breezing toward the middle of November and Thanksgiving is just a few days away. It is wise to plan ahead, as I have discovered through the years — not only to be prepared (without those last-minute feelings of frustration when things don’t always turn out the way we plan), but to take advantage of the sales and exposure to new recipes and ideas. I love to cook for the holidays and begin buying up standard ingredients when I see them discounted this time of year — the sugars, flours, butter, oils, candy coatings, and the list goes on. My pantry begins to look like its own bake shop come November. Hopefully, this will spur you toward your own stockpile, so you can whip up one of your holiday specialties quickly for the family, guests, neighbors or the office. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • App State Basketball’s Furious Rally Comes Up Just Short at Michigan in 79-71 Loss on Tuesday


    November 6, 2019. Appalachian State men’s basketball cut a 30-point second half deficit to just four points, but fell 79-71 in its season opener at Michigan on Tuesday evening. With 12:59 left in the game, Michigan (1-0) opened a 67-37 lead. From there, App State (0-1) scored nine straight points to cut the Wolverine lead to 67-46 with just over 10 minutes to play. Following a Wolverine three, the Mountaineers scored 18 consecutive points, with 11 coming from Justin Forrest, to pull within six points at 70-64 with 2:23 to play. After a Michigan layup, Adrian Delph drained a deep 3-pointer with 38 seconds left to cut the Mountaineer deficit to five points at 72-67. / Read more…



  • Unofficial Election Results for Avery County Municipal Election

    November 6, 2019. Voters in Avery County Townships turned out in strong force Tuesday for their respective municipal elections. Twenty-six candidates were running to fill either Mayor or Town Council seats in eight city, township and village municipal government seats in the county, including: Banner Elk, Beech Mountain, Crossnore, Elk Park, Grandfather Village, Newland, Seven Devils and Sugar Mountain.   By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Unofficial Election Results for Boone, Blowing Rock, Seven Devils and Beech Mountain

    November 5, 2019. Votes have been tallied and the unofficial elections results have been shared by the Watauga County Board of Elections. In Boone, town council incumbent Loretta Clawson retained her seat in a very tight race with 821 votes. Dustin Hicks picked up a seat on the council with 810 votes and Virginia Roseman got the third and final seat with 800 votes. Nancy LaPlaca unofficially fell six votes short of a council seat with 794 votes. There were 56 write-in votes for the town council.   By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Avery Commissioners Receive Positive County Audit Report During Their November 4th Meeting

    November 6, 2019. During the regular monthly meeting of the Avery Commissioners on November 4, it was revealed that the county has received a highly-positive audit for the 2018-19 fiscal year. Sharon Gillespie of the Young, Miller & Gillespie Public Accountants Company in Spruce Pine addressed the commissioners about the past fiscal year’s county audit report that the accounting firm conducted. Gillespie said the county received excellent ratings in its audit, running from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2018. According to Barrier, Jr., the county has a Total Governmental Fund Balance of $23,864,197.00. He noted that not all that money is available as pre-paid assets and restricted funds are taken from that amount. He said the total amount available to the county in the General Fund’s Unrestricted Fund Balance is $9,782,526.00.   By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Watauga, Avery Obituaries – November 5, 2019

    November 5, 2019. The following are recent obituary notices from Austin and Barnes and Hampton funeral homes in Boone and Reins-Sturdivant in Newland. / Read more…



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