• Weekly Crime Reports: Activity and Arrests in Boone and Watauga County, December 2 – December 8

    December 11, 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



  • Beech Mountain Town Manager Fired After 4-1 Vote from New Town Council

    December 11, 2019. Beech Mountain Town Manager Tim Holloman was fired from his position during Tuesday’s town council meeting. “We had a change in our town council and the new council decided to go a different way. They voted 4-1 to dismiss Tim Holloman,” said Kate Gavenus, who is the Director of Tourism and Economic Development for Beech Mountain. Beech Mountain Volunteer Fire Department Chief Robert “Bob” Pudney was appointed interim manager by a 5-0 unanimous vote. According to Gavenus, the meeting was recessed until Monday, December 23 at 4 p.m. to continue the rest of the agenda with Pudney serving as the interim town manager. Pudney has been the chief of the Beech Mountain Fire Department for 10 years.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • SugarFest Returns to Sugar Mountain for the 17th Consecutive Year this Weekend


    December 11, 2019. Ski Conditions are improving almost hourly as temperatures remain cold enough to continue making snow in preparation for SugarFest at Sugar Mountain this upcoming Friday, Saturday and Sunday. “It’s an official kickoff to winter where we bring a lot of fun things together and encourage people to come up and get things started for the ski season,” says Kim Jochl, the Vice-President and Director of Marketing at Sugar Mountain Resort. SugarFest, which has been held each year since 2003, will kick off on Friday with the annual preseason ski clinic that will feature United States Olympian Andrew Weibrecht for the second straight year. The clinic begins at 8:30 a.m. and will continue until 7 p.m. The ski clinic also takes place from 8:30 a.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturday and again from 8:30 a.m. until 3 p.m. on Sunday.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • “A Carolina Snowbelle Christmas” Holiday Show Brings New Holiday Tradition to the High Country Dec. 13-14


    December 11, 2019. Local Precision dance troupe The Carolina Snowbelles are headed to the newly renovated Appalachian Theatre to debut their renowned holiday show on December 13 at 7:30 p.m. and December 14 at 3:00 p.m. The Carolina Snowbelles aim to create a new holiday tradition in downtown Boone with their production of A Carolina Snowbelle Christmas this weekend; the 22-member dance troupe has been rehearsing this 90 minute show since August – their most ambitious and comprehensive performance to date. A Carolina Snowbelle Christmas will feature precision tap and jazz, vocal performance, and ballet, as well as spoken word and audience interaction. Throughout the performance, audience members will experience the Snowbelles’ impressive precision dance and spectacular costuming along with two brand new scenes featuring choreography by New York City Ballet alumnus, Amanda Edge and Colorado Ballet alumnus, Brad Parquette. By Joe Johnson / Read more…



  • 23rd Annual “An Appalachian Christmas” Benefit Concert Presented by JSMHM Dec. 13


    December 11, 2019. Presenting “An Appalachian Christmas” in early December has become a holiday tradition for Joe Shannon’s Mountain Home Music. This marks the 23rd year that this free concert offers the opportunity for local musicians to give back to the High Country community – celebrating “giving” – the real “reason for the season”. As the late MHM’s beloved founder, Joe Shannon once said, “As MHM prepares to close the door on its current year – in the process, it opens the door for others.” No admission is charged for this benefit concert, but a love offering will be collected, and 100 percent of the proceeds are given to two worthwhile community non-profit organizations known for helping those less fortunate. The benefactors once again are the Hospitality House, which is Watauga County’s homeless shelter and Santa’s Toy Box, which helps to assure that all children in Watauga County get a visit from Santa. The concert takes place this Friday night, December 13h, at Grace Lutheran Church in Boone beginning at 7:00pm. / Read more…



  • High Country Home Sales in 2019 Already Top 2018 Sales


    December 11, 2019. With one month remaining in 2019 local Realtors® have already sold more homes than in all of 2018, according to the latest real estate report by the High Country Association of Realtors®. It is the ninth consecutive year of sales growth in the four-county area. It is also the most homes sold in a year by Realtors® in more than a decade. The growth has been powered by a prolonged busy summer selling season. Realtors® have sold more than 200 residential and multi-family homes every month since May, according to the High Country Multiple Listing Service (MLS). The last three months – September, October and November – recorded the highest sales during those months since at least 2005, the earliest MLS data available. / Read more…



  • Sherrie Norris Lovin’ Spoonful Cooking Column: Christmas Confections to Sweeten the Season


    December 11, 2019. My kitchen pantry is filling up quickly with sugars, nuts and all those other ingredients needed for my annual Christmas cookie and candy-making marathon. I’m not sure when it will happen, but it must be soon— and in addition to an uninterrupted stretch of time and a burst of energy, I’m also waiting for a convenient clear, cold day without rain. The weather affects it, believe it or not, especially when working with chocolate. The following recipes include some of my favorite seasonal delights, or a version of same. I hope you find something here to help with your own Christmas candy-making and baking inspirations. When you see the smiles it all brings to your loved ones, you will realize it was well worth the effort. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



  • Watauga, Avery Obituaries – December 10, 2019

    December 10, 2019. 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



  • Melissa Reaves’ 18th Annual Holiday Show at The Beacon Dec. 14 with Lineup of Expert Musicians


    December 10, 2019. Melissa Reaves is returning to host her 18th annual Holiday Show at The Beacon this Saturday, December 14 with doors opening at 6 p.m. and the show starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are $18. CDs of Reaves’ newest album, Bitter Pear, will be available for purchase at the show. For the past 18 years, Reaves has hosted her annual Holiday Show at locations across Boone; for the past 12 years, the show has been hosted downtown at The Local. This year, the venue is changing to The Beacon, where Reaves will be joined by several of her closest associates on stage to bring the house down this holiday season. Guitarist Masa Takahashi, kalimba master Kevin Spears, bassist Philip Bynoe, keyboardist Timothy Dick, and drummer Timothy Roberts are joining together with Reaves this Saturday to put on a performance you will never forget. By Joe Johnson / Read more…



  • Small Town Christmas a Big Time Hit in Banner Elk


    December 10, 2019. Santa Clause had a busy weekend in Banner Elk, finding time to take part in a pancake breakfast, take photos with pets, read stories to children and even take a jump into Wildcat Lake for the Polar Plunge. Banner Elk’s Small Town Christmas brought big crowds to Avery County over the weekend that included a wide range of events. The weekend started on Friday with caroling, hot chocolate and the lighting of the Christmas tree donated by Elk River Evergreens in Elk Park. “That was well attended, we had probably 200 hundred people come out for that,” said Nancy Owen, Banner Elk’s Tourism Development Director. Saturday started with the Reindeer Run during the morning sponsored by Williams YMCA of Avery County, followed by a pancake breakfast with Santa Clause. After that, Santa headed to the Banner Elk Chamber of Commerce where people brought their pets to have a photo made with Santa, thanks to the Avery County Humane Society.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • Shirley Harris ‘Buys Boone Lunch’ in Honor of her Husband Tim’s 75th Birthday on Wednesday


    December 10, 2019. F.A.R.M. Cafe welcomes Tim and Shirley Harris for a special Buy Boone Lunch honoring Tim’s 75th birthday. Tomorrow, December 10, the Harris’ along with friends and family will be on-site volunteering and serving a delicious lunch prepared from locally sourced ingredients. In addition to staffing the event, the Harris’ are generously donating funds to cover the day’s meal cost.   This contribution allows F.A.R.M. Cafe to utilize all additional donations made this Wednesday in its mission to fight food insecurity in the High Country. Just like each day at F.A.R.M Cafe, diners are encouraged to donate what they are able for a great lunch. / Read more…



  • Watauga County Deeds – Nov. 28–Dec. 4: 22 Deed Transfers With a Total Value of $7,949,000.00

    Dec. 10, 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…



  • Winter Exhibition Celebration at the Blowing Rock Art and History Museum Opens December 13th


    December 10, 2019. On December 13th, the Winter Exhibition Celebration at the Blowing Rock Art and History Museum will be presenting new works for its seasonal exhibit. The museum’s Curator of Exhibitions and Collections Director, Dianna Cameron, talked about the upcoming pieces in, saying, “The event we have coming up is one of our three annual opening receptions for our latest exhibitions, so it isn’t something really different that we do, we just feature different exhibitions with every reception. With this one, we have five exhibitions that we’re presenting, which is photographs by Hugh Morton, a show that traveled to us from Chapel Hill, we have a work of watercolors from Sallie Middleton and the Asheville Art Museum, and also curated the show of realistic wood sculptures by Pete Ludo, an artist based in Lenoir. We also have our exhibit by a local craftsman, Chris Capazzoli, who makes all of his guitars and string instruments by hand. Lastly in our community gallery, we’ll have an exhibition of photographs by David Holt, who is both a musician and photographer, and within that exhibit he talks about his mentors and heroes as a musician which features names like Doc Watson.” By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Western Youth Network Festival of Trees in Blowing Rock Raised Over $50,000 Last Weekend


    December 10, 2019. The 5th annual Festival of Trees at Chetola Resort in Blowing Rock this past weekend raised almost $50,000 for the Western Youth Network (WYN).  WYN provides unique and quality programming that offers support to over 200 children and youth each year through mentoring, after-school initiatives, substance abuse prevention and summer camps. Themed trees and wreaths, decorated by High Country businesses and individuals, were sold via an online auction while the four day festival was open to the public for their viewing enjoyment. / Read more…



  • Olympic Skier Andrew Weibrecht Returning to Ski Country Sports in Banner Elk on December 15


    December 9, 2019. For the second year in a row, United States Olympian Andrew Weibrecht will be making an appearance in the High Country. Weibrecht will be at Ski Country Sports in Banner Elk from 4-5 p.m. on Sunday, December 15. Hopefully, the weather this year will make up for last year’s snowstorm that put a damper on the event. “He (Andrew) came up here the weekend we had that 20-inch snow, so it was hard for people to get out and about and get up here,” said Bill Leonard, owner of Ski Country Sports. Weibrecht is a three-time Olympian and a two-time medalist in the Winter Olympics. He competed in 2010, 2014 and 2018 Winter Olympics before announcing his retirement last year. The Lake Placid native won the bronze in Super-G at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver and followed that up with a silver in the Super-G at the 2014 Olympics in Sochi. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • App State to Conduct Search for Head Football Coach; Shawn Clark Named Interim Head Coach


    December 9, 2019. Sunday night, reports emerged that App State football coach Eli Drinkwitz agreed to take over at the University of Missouri after one season in Boone. Peter Thamel of Yahoo Sports confirmed the contract rumors last night, saying, “Drinkwitz replaces Odom, who was fired in the wake of a 6-6 season and a 25-25 overall record. Odom got Missouri bowl eligible in three of his four seasons but was fired by athletic director Jim Sterk immediately after this season. Sterk’s search had been underwhelming until Missouri’s contingent flew to Boone, North Carolina, on Saturday night to interview Drinkwitz. Reports named Army’s Jeff Monken, Louisiana Tech’s Skip Holtz and Arkansas State’s Blake Anderson among those under significant consideration.“ Mitchell Forde of MissouriRivals.com also confirmed the reports of Drinkwitz move, pending approval of the Board of Curators who most likely will allow the move to go forward. On the details of the search, Forde says, “Sunday, the two sides agreed on terms, though the details of the agreement have not yet been made public. Missouri will have to pay $1.7 million to buy Drinkwitz out of the remaining four years of his contract with Appalachian State. By Colby Gable / Read more…



  • Fan Shots From Appalachian State’s Victory To Win Sun Belt Championship

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    Dec. 9, 2019 Here are some fan shots from Saturday’s 45-38 victory over Louisiana-LaFayette. The crowd was electric with enthusiasm watching their team battle for another Sun Best Championship. Photography by Debbie Carter. / Read more…



  • No Decision on Valle Crucis School Property Until March of 2020

    December 9, 2019. The idea of a new Valle Crucis School will be put on hold until March 2020 at the earliest after the Watauga County Board of Education decided to extend the due diligence period on the property that the county has under contract. “The board voted to extend the due diligence period on the property until March to perform some additional testing. We are still waiting for those results at the moment,” said Garrett Price, the Director of Communications for Watauga County Schools. Citizens have voiced their opinion on the potential property, known locally as the Hodges Property on Broadstone Road, a 14.4-acre parcel of land that is roughly a quarter-mile from the current Valle Crucis School. While everyone agrees that Valle Crucis needs a new school, opinions have differed greatly on where that school should be located.  By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • The Carolina Snowbelles to Perform Holiday Show at The Appalachian Theatre this Friday & Saturday


    December 9, 2019. A new performance holiday tradition will begin in downtown Boone this weekend with the production of A Carolina Snowbelle Christmas. Local precision dance troupe The Carolina Snowbelles is headed to the newly renovated Appalachian Theatre to debut their holiday show on December 13 at 7:30 pm and December 14 at 3:00pm. The 22-member dance troupe has been rehearsing this 90 minute show since August – their most ambitious and comprehensive performance to date.  A Carolina Snowbelle Christmas will feature precision tap and jazz, vocal performance, and ballet, as well as spoken word and audience interaction. Throughout the performance, audience members will experience the Snowbelles’ impressive precision dance and spectacular costuming along with two brand new scenes featuring choreography by New York City Ballet alumnus, Amanda Edge and Colorado Ballet alumnus, Brad Parquette.. / Read more…



  • The Powder Horn is Back in Print, WHS School Newspaper Relaunches Print Edition


    December 9, 2019. In a matter of weeks, we are set to turn our calendars to the second decade of the 21st century. Over the past twenty years, our society has become indelibly plugged-in. In the past two decades, the technology that first allowed us to make calls without being tethered to a cable between phones has supplied us with computers in our pockets and virtual assistants in our homes. In the modern world, everything from the refrigerator to the doorbell is connected, digitized and networked. But for a group of students at Watauga High School — digital natives who never lived in a pre-internet world — there is an appetite for renewing a long-familiar medium: a print newspaper. Over the past three months, journalism students at Watauga High School have worked to revitalize the school’s newspaper, The Powder Horn. The publication, whose print edition has existed in some form since Watauga High School’s foundation in 1965, has been online-only for several years. / Read more…



  • MerleFest Announces Lineup Additions For 2020 Festival


    December 9, 2019. MerleFest, presented by Window World, is proud to announce the next round of artist additions for MerleFest 2020, which will be held April 23-26. John Prine, Billy Strings, Colin Hay, Kelsey Waldon, and Gangstagrass will be joining the annual homecoming of musicians and music fans on the campus of Wilkes Community College in Wilkesboro, North Carolina, in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Today’s lineup announcement adds five great artists to MerleFest’s already stacked lineup. / Read more…



  • Eliah Drinkwitz Leaving Appalachian State After One Season to Become Missouri’s Head Coach


    December 9, 2019. Eliah Drinkwitz, one of college football’s fastest rising coaching stars, is leaving Appalachian State University as its head coach to take the same post at the University of Missouri, according to nationally published reports. Official announcements from both universities and Drinkwitz are expected soon. Drinkwitz, whose lone year of head coaching experience saw him take the Mountaineers to a 12-1 record with two wins over Power Five teams (South Carolina and North Carolina) and a Sun Belt Conference championship. By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Mountaineers Claim Sun Belt Conference Championship With 45-38 Win Over Louisiana-LaFayette at Kidd Brewer Stadium

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    December 8, 2019. Another season and another conference championship for the Appalachian State University Football Mountaineers. After Saturday’s dramatic 45-38 victory over Louisiana-Lafayette, the Mountaineers have now won at least a share of the last four Sun Belt championships. That includes the past two conference’s two championship games, which were both held at Kidd Brewer Stadium in Boone. This season, Appalachian State used a three-touchdown performance from game Most Valuable Player Darrynton Evans, a running game that that powered for 267 yards and a defense that forced three turnovers to produce the win. The Mountaineers (12-1) have won at least nine games in every season since 2015, and that includes at least 10 wins in four of the last five seasons. Appalachian State, which also secured the first 12-win season ever for the Sun Belt and for a major college football bowl-subdivision school from the state of North Carolina, jumped to a 21-7 lead by the end of the first period. By Tim Gardner / Photography by David C. Mayo / Read more…



  • Ski Resorts Expecting Great Weather and Slope Conditions for the First Weekend of December


    December 6, 2019. It should be a busy weekend on the ski slopes with near-perfect skiing weather for the first full weekend of December. “We were really able to capitalize on this cold front and we’ve made snow the last couple of nights and it’s definitely peak season snow. We’ve got a 28-36 inch base on eight open slopes and going into the weekend, the forecast looks just about perfect for skiing and snowboarding,” says Drew Stanley, the Marketing Director at Appalachian Ski Mtn. This weekend also marks the annual anniversary weekend celebration at Appalachian Ski Mtn. Ticket prices for Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. until 4 p.m. are only $5. “The first full weekend of December we offer 1962 prices, that was our first year of skiing,” said Stanley. “We’re excited to have great conditions for all of the people coming up to celebrate our anniversary.” This year, the special $5 ticket price is available online only. Customers simply purchase their tickets in advance online to get the special anniversary pricing. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • East Boone Connector Multi-Modal Path will be Built by the NCDOT


    December 6, 2019. Harmony Lanes is excited to announce that the East Boone Connector multi-modal path, proposed to the NCDOT in the spring of 2019, has been added to the plan for the Bamboo/Wilson’s Ridge road upgrades by the NCDOT, and will be paid for by the NCDOT.  The East Boone Connector will run on the west side of Bamboo Rd. from US 421 to the Wilson’s Ridge intersection.  The multi-modal path will be separated from traffic by a curb and grass/landscaping to protect users.  The East Boone Connector will be the first on-street protected multi-modal path in Boone.  It will allow East Boone pedestrians and cyclists to access the Boone Greenway, services like the Hospitality House and businesses like Center 45 climbing gym and Hatchet Coffee at Bamboo Rd., the future town complex at Brookshire Park, the future Grove Street connector greenway, and Rocky Knob Mountain Bike Park.   / Read more…



  • Rep. Ray Russell to Hold Watauga County Town Hall on December 10

    December 6, 2019. WHAT: Watauga County General Town Hall Meeting with NC Rep. Ray Russell. WHEN: 6-7:30 pm on Tuesday, Dec. 10. WHERE: Boone Council Chambers, 1500 Blowing Rock Rd. The 2019 legislative session was the second-longest in North Carolina history but still resulted in significant failures from the General Assembly. No comprehensive budget was passed and the legislature failed to act on the state’s Farm Bill. Education and environmental needs were significantly underfunded. There was some success, however. The Raise the Age law changed state statutes to include 16 and 17-year-olds as juveniles for many nonviolent crimes. In addition, child sexual abuse statutes and sexual assault laws were strengthened. / Read more…



  • Today’s 2020 Candidate Announcements

    December 5, 2019. Note: Each day, the High Country Press will share emails and announcements from candidates that are entering their names into the 2020 primary and general election. Today we received the following announcements from N.C. House Representative Ray Russell, Watauga County School Board candidate Ronny Holste and U.S. Representative Virginia Foxx. Hello, my name is Jason Cornett and I am asking you for your vote for Watauga County Board of Education. I am a native of Watauga County living in Vilas with my wife, Brandy, and son, Josh. Brandy serves the Business Officer for Appalachian State University Housing and has worked at ASU for almost 20 years. Josh is a senior at Watauga High School, and was recently accepted into Appalachian State University where he plans to attend next fall. I grew up in the Bethel community where I attended Bethel Elementary School and went on to graduate from Watauga High in 1994. After high school, I entered the workforce at Appalachian State University. I held positions in Food Service and office administration before seeking a career in law enforcement. I began as a security officer at App State in 1999 and attended basic law enforcement training at night while working day shift. / Read more…



  • Six Candidates Have Filed for Avery County Government Offices; Foxx Will No Longer Represent Avery After Judicial Ruling

    December 5, 2019. As of today, six candidates have filed for county-wide government seats that will be open in Avery County in 2020. For Clerk of Court, Interim Clerk of Court Teresa Benfield has filed, along with Theresa Lewis King and Linda Webb. Benfield has served in the interim role since the retirement earlier this year of long-time Clerk of Court Lisa Daniels. All three candidates have worked in various capacities in the judicial system. For Register of Deeds, incumbent Renee DelIinger has filed for re-election as has Incumbent Wood Hall (Woodie) Young, Jr. for County Commissioner. Benfield, King, Webb, Dellinger and Young, Jr. are all Republicans. For non-partisan Board of Education, Ruth Shirley is the only candidate to file so far. Shirley is a long-time teacher and principal in the Avery School System.  By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Jones House Hosting Annual Holiday Festivities Next Two Weekends; Christmas Parade in Downtown Boone Next Saturday


    December 5, 2019. The Jones House will be stretching its holiday festivities and Christmas parade over the course of two weekends this year. This coming weekend will include the Festive Friday and solar Christmas tree lighting events; the Christmas parade itself will be held next Saturday, December 14, at 11:00 a.m. in part to accommodate the Sun Belt Championship game at App State this Saturday. “It’s a great tradition we have,” said Mark Freed, Cultural Resources Director for the Jones House, “It’s a fun experience that you can only get when you live in a small town like Boone that has a community who likes to get out and celebrate! We always have strong support from our civic organizations, our schools, and the nonprofit organizations in the community. We’re hoping for good weather, but either way, we encourage everyone to come out and enjoy a winter afternoon with us in the mountains!” By Joe Johnson / Read more…



  • High Winds Bring Down Trees and Power Lines Across the High Country; Gusts over 100 MPH Recorded at Grandfather Mountain


    December 5, 2019. Overnight winds on Wednesday night and Thursday morning left several trees down and even a few power lines as crews have been working to restore power to customers. As of 1 p.m. Thursday afternoon, crews from Blue Ridge Energy are still attempting to restore power to 280 members in Watauga County, 88 members in Ashe County, 19 members in Caldwell County and 3 members in Alleghany County. Overall, nearly 6,000 customers lived in areas where winds caused damage to the electrical lines. At the time of the worst conditions around 3 a.m. Thursday morning, a total of 2,529 customers were without power, according to information provided by Blue Ridge Energy. The worst-hit county was in Ashe where 47 locations were damaged that impacted over 1,800 members in the Obids, Timber Ridge, Shatley Springs and Highway 16 areas of the county. By Nathan Ham / Read more…



  • No. 20 Appalachian State seeks Sun Belt and State of North Carolina Season Record For Wins In Saturday’s Conference Championship Game In Boone


    December 5, 2019. The Appalachian State Mountaineers seeking to become the first Sun Belt Conference team and the first Football Bowl Subdivision Championship team from the state of North Carolina to win 12 games in a season when they play Louisiana-LaFayette this coming Saturday, Dec. 7. The game will be played on their home field at Kidd Brewer Stadium in Boone for the league crown. A win then or in their bowl game will ensure the Mountaineers of those lofty milestones. Saturday’s game will kickoff at 12:00 noon and will be televised nationally on ESPN. Needing a conference championship game win to remain in contention for the Cotton Bowl, Appalachian State’s case is also bolstered by an FBS-leading six road wins that are part of the nation’s only 6-0 road record. With road wins against the likes of bowl-eligible Appalachian State has the best road record since Western Michigan went 6-0 en route to a Cotton Bowl berth at the end of the 2016 season. By Tim Gardner / Read more…



  • Watauga County Deeds – Nov. 21-27: 50 Deed Transfers With a Total Value of $12,817,500.00

    Dec. 5, 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…



  • Mr. WHS Fundraiser Returns for 20th Birthday Celebration at Watauga High School this Saturday

    December 5, 2019. Boone’s most heartwarming fundraiser is back again, celebrating a very special occasion this year! The Mr. WHS show, a fundraiser that helps raise thousands of dollars every year for three local families in the form of a male beauty pageant is marking its 20th Annual Show! Because of the special occasion, the theme this year is “Happy Birthday Mr. WHS!”. The pageant was created in 2000 as a way to help raise money for Mr. Lan O’Loughlin, a science teacher and swim coach at Watauga High School. The first show raised $4,000 and has only grown since then. Last year’s show raised over $21,000 and this year’s goal is to raise over $25,000. Each year Mr. WHS raises money for three local families in our community. The recipients are always very close to our hearts and mean a lot to this town. / Read more…



  • The Fred Vannoy Family of Todd Celebrates Five Generations With Baby Girl’s Birth in October


    December 5, 2019. The birth of a baby girl is always exciting, but especially so when she becomes the first of a family’s fifth generation. That’s the latest news in the Fred Vannoy family, happening when Vannoy’s great-granddaughter, Indya Moretz, gave birth to her daughter, Italya Renee, on October 23. The little girl’s birth brought smiles for several miles to the family, now spread from Todd to Marion. It was especially heart-warming to the family patriarch, Vannoy, himself, who became a great-great grandfather at the age of 93; just a few short months earlier, the death of Nancy Vannoy, his wife of 73 years, had left a painful void in all of their lives. By Sherrie Norris / Read more…



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