• LETTERS / Support LOCAL Businesses Nov. 30 on Small Business Saturday

    November 19, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY GREGG THOMPSON / Dear Editor, I’m no Scrooge, but I usually don’t like Christmas shopping. I love buying things for people, but I don’t like the crowds or the lines or the generic merchandise they stock at the chain stores. That’s why I like Small Business Saturday. Small Business Saturday, the Saturday after Thanksgiving, is the opposite of Black Friday. Black Friday, of course, is the unofficial start of the holiday season, although it seems like the Black Friday sales started the second the last trick-or-treater left the porch. Black Friday is all about moving merchandise. Stores open early and close late. People fight crowds and stand in line to save a few bucks on slow cookers and smart TVs. Black Friday is noisy and stressful. Small Business Saturday, on the other hand, is about supporting your friends and neighbors. It’s about buying gifts and enjoying meals who can’t get from one of the national chains.  Read more…



  • LETTERS / Why You’ll Lose at the Hemp Game – An Opinion Piece for Small Farmers in NC

    October 29, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY SERA DEVA / Dear Editor, This is a plea for my friends and neighbors who are small-scale farmers — the people who I feel are doing the most important job on the planet. Please don’t fall for the hemp game! You’ll lose. Here’s why. I fell in love with small-scale agriculture eleven years ago as a result of my involvement with the marijuana industry in Oregon and California. “The industry” was how many of us farming and food students out West made our real (albeit, seasonal) money and lived our lives as fluidly as we did. There were generations that this was true for; mine was probably the last. I want to preface the body of this work by saying that I know that hemp (grown for cannabidiol or CBD flower in this context, a non-intoxicating substance that is known for its medicinal properties) and marijuana (grown for tetrahydrocannabinol or THC, the compound that causes intoxication in medical and recreational cannabis) are two different crops entirely, with different legal statuses and histories that vary across state lines.   Read more…



  • LETTERS / Watauga Riverkeeper Response to “Valle Crucis in Jeopardy” October 11, 2019

    October 11, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY ANDY HILL / Dear Editor, In a recent letter to the editor (“Valle Crucis in Jeopardy”, October 11, 2019), Bill Pressly, stated that the Watauga County Board of Education does not have the support of the Watauga Riverkeeper for the construction of an elementary school at the Hodges site in Valle Crucis. I think it is important to clarify for your readers that it is not the role of the Watauga Riverkeeper and its host organization, MountainTrue, to take a position for or against the Hodges site.  Our job is to ensure that any project built in the Watauga watershed adheres to Watauga County water standards and all applicable environmental regulations. If the project does move forward, the Watauga Riverkeeper will review the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) to assess stormwater control measures and design, riparian buffer, wastewater treatment plans and more to ensure that any construction does not negatively impact water quality.   Read more…



  • LETTERS / Valle Crucis in Jeopardy

    October 11, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY BILL PRESSLY / Dear Editor, In March the Watauga County Board Of Education (BOE) entered into a contract to purchase 14.4 acres (the Hodges site) for 1.105 million dollars as a possible site for a new Valle Crucis School grades 1-8. They are offering to pay 2-3 times the market value of that land. 13 of the 14.4 acres are designated Special Hazard Flood Area and thus requires mitigation in order to build. Much of the reason that a new school is needed is due to flooding of the current school. It makes no sense to spend 35 million dollars to build a new school on a property with a high potential of flooding. The Board of Education has disregarded the State recommendation that calls for a school of that size to be built on a minimum of 25 acres.  Read more…



  • LETTERS / We See Growth at Any Cost Without Regard to What We Call Infrastructure

    October 11, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, In the opinions I’ve sent to the local ‘news’ outlets over the years, I’ve avoided speaking of ‘local’ politics having learned in West Virginia how convoluted that topic can be, but some things are so obvious that even Ray Charles could see them. They paved paradise and put up a parking lot, is how the song goes, and when you look around Boone, you can see the song’s message clearly displayed in the last twenty years. Frequently Boone is a parking lot, and occasionally a flood zone, all of which has been shaped by those who tell us they work for us. Every day you see more large building projects with no place to put the rising numbers of vehicles. Your daily pursuit of happiness is markedly slowed for the profit of a few, enabled by ‘our’ government. Read more…



  • LETTERS / The Current Proposed Building Site for Valle Crucis School Needs to be Reexamined

    October 1, 2019 Letters to the Editor. By Sally Pressly Ballmer / Dear Editor, I am writing in protest of the proposed new school construction site in Valle Crucis, NC on the Hodges Farm property on Broadstone Road. My parents moved to Valle Crucis in 1984 and purchased a dilapidated homestead that they then restored to historic and architectural preservation guidelines and opened the Mast Farm Inn in 1985.  Serving hundreds of dining and lodging guests each year, the Mast Farm Inn, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, became known as a place of refuge and nostalgia for a simpler time, when food prepared was grown in the garden and air conditioning was a cool breeze through an open window.On October 1 at 6:00pm at the Methodist Church in Valle Crucis, the Valle Crucis Historic District Commission will meet to discuss the changing of commission guidelines, unprecedented by any other construction. The meeting is open to the public. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Before People had an Easy Way to See Video Footage of Police Murders

    October 1, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, “We have come to be one of the worst ruled, one of the most completely controlled and dominated, governments in the civilized world—no longer a government by free opinion, no longer a government by conviction and the vote of the majority, but a government by the opinion and the duress of small groups of dominant men.”   Woodrow Wilson We’re secretly one of the most peaceful cultures on the planet. We voted for Bush, because he promised us a non-interventionist foreign policy. Obama promised to bring the troops home from the Bush wars. Trump promised to end foreign adventures. We’ve been voting for peace for years, and all we get is war. American democracy doesn’t care what you want and is never accountable. The state always gets its way. So when ‘our’ government wants a war, it will happen. ‘Our’ government works to reduce support for citizens at home so it can war on foreign citizens. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Some of the Issues to Consider Regarding the Proposed Valle Crucis School Site

    September 23, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY BILL PRESSLY / Dear Editor, I’ve lived in Valle Crucis on property adjacent to the Proposed Hodges site for 35 years. As a long term resident I have numerous concerns about the the proposed site for a new Valle Crucis School. Of primary concern is increased impervious surface area due to construction of the building, parking lots and driveways, and paved playgrounds . Rainwater can no longer be absorbed into the soil. This will lead to greater runoff at higher velocity, and flood potential on surrounding property and properties downstream, most notably the Valle Crucis Park. Runoff may also carry more pollutants to the small trout stream that bisects the property and also the Watauga River. There is also potential impact on the groundwater table and well water quality. Also of great concern is a new sewer system and water treatment facilities required to service 425 + people and the effluent being released into the flood zone and watershed. There is already a system in place on the current site. Read more…



  • LETTERS / It’s Our Money, Isn’t It? Flawed Appraisal of Hodges School Site

    September 23, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY LYLE SCHOENFELDT / Dear Editor, Respondents to ValleCrucis.net indicate a strong preference for the proposed Valle Crucis School to be in Valle Crucis but have serious concern for the $1.1 million tax payer dollars being offered for the Hodges property as the proposed site. This was also a concern mentioned in the public hearing on Sept 3. The more than $78,000/acre for undeveloped land, 90% of which is in the flood plain, is an eye opener for those familiar with land values in the Valle. The appraisal for this land was equal to the $1.1 million offered for purchase but close examination of the appraisal shows serious flaws. Suffice it to say with more reasonable comparables a generous valuation of the Hodges property would have been $400,000, about 36% of the $1.1 million offered. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Last Year I Was Assaulted by a Patient While Working in the Hospital

    September 23, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY BILL MOORE / Dear Editor, I am an Emergency Department Registered Nurse and NC certified Paramedic. In October of 2018, while at work in the ED, I was violently and viciously attacked and physically assaulted by an Emergency Department patient who repeatedly tried to punch me in the face. You may say to yourself “that’s terrible but it doesn’t really affect me.” You may think that being attacked by patients is “just part of the job.” Or you probably think this “doesn’t happen often enough to be of any significant consequence.” You would be gravely mistaken on all three counts!. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Rep. Russell’s Statement on State Budget Veto Override Vote on Sept. 11

    September 12, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY REP. RAY RUSSELL / Dear Editor, House Republican Leaders intentionally deceived House Democrats, the press, and the public about a session held at 8:30 am, September 11, 2019, and rammed a vote on the State Budget through the House. At the end of a non-voting session Tuesday night, the House Rules Committee Chairman David Lewis, who presided over the session, told Minority Leader Darren Jackson that no votes would be taken in the 8:30 am session Wednesday. The Minority Leader communicated this information to House Democrats via email. Also, Rep. Lewis texted reporters that there would be no votes in the 8:30 am session Wednesday. (Copies of the text have circulated widely in news reports and social media.) I presume the purpose was to keep reporters from being on the floor to cover what would happen. To add context, the House has scheduled scores of “No Vote Sessions” since January. This is normal operating procedure to dispense with parliamentary procedures that do not require the presence of members. Read more…



  • LETTERS / ValleCrucis.net Respondents Speak Loud and Clear

    September 23, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY LYLE SCHOENFELDT / Dear Editor, Respondents to ValleCrucis.net indicate a strong preference for the proposed Valle Crucis School to be in Valle Crucis but have serious concern for the $1.1 million tax payer dollars being offered for the Hodges property as the proposed site. This was also a concern mentioned in the public hearing on Sept 3. The more than $78,000/acre for undeveloped land, 90% of which is in the flood plain, is an eye opener for those familiar with land values in the Valle. The appraisal for this land was equal to the $1.1 million offered for purchase but close examination of the appraisal shows serious flaws. Suffice it to say with more reasonable comparables a generous valuation of the Hodges property would have been $400,000, about 36% of the $1.1 million offered. Read more…



  • LETTERS / It’s Time Again

    July 25, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, Fifty years ago Rachael Carson wrote a book that got a lot of attention: Silent Spring. It seems the answer to her these days is: We’re not sure, so why stand in the way of ‘progress’, when concerns are raised about chemical processes being let loose in the world? Who benefits, what’s the blowback, and why aren’t those questions raised as we spread unknown chemical ‘solution’s’ all around us. ‘Our’ president recently signed an executive order letting loose on ‘consumers’ any chemical creation ‘our’ food industry cares to sell in the face of the problems with GMO creations like gluten difficulties and behavioral problems in children, let alone blowback like dying honey bees. Monsanto has been convicted in several courts by juries convinced that roundup causes cancer which hasn’t slowed the worldwide broadcast of those poisons a bit.. Read more…



  • LETTERS / An Open Letter to Rep. Virginia Foxx

    July 17, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY Eric W. Plagg / Dear Rep. Foxx, As one of your constituents and someone whose interests you were elected to serve, I was deeply disappointed to see that you and all but four of your fellow GOP members of the US House voted against House Resolution 489 condemning President Trump’s racist comments directed at Members of Congress. As a reminder, this resolution was in response to tweets by President Trump, wherein he said of four House members who are American citizens and women of color, So interesting to see ‘Progressive’ Democrat Congresswomen, who originally came from countries whose governments are a complete and total catastrophe…now loudly and viciously telling the people of the United States…how our government is to be run. Why don’t they go back and help fix the totally broken and crime infested places from which they came[?] Then come back and show us how it is done. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Rep. Russell Supports Governor’s Budget Compromise

    July 10, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY Rep. Ray Russell / Dear Editor, On Tuesday, Gov. Roy Cooper released his compromise state budget proposal. It includes healthcare coverage for nearly 500,000 working poor North Carolinians, a larger increase in teacher and state employee pay, more funding for school construction, additional spending for clean air and water, and restored funding for the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS). This offer from Gov. Cooper is an investment in our people and our future. We must devote resources to education, healthcare, and protecting the environment. The proposal keeps the corporate and franchise taxes at their current low rate, and retains the General Assembly (GA) plan to increase the standard deduction on state taxes to help working families. The Governor’s plan includes $700 million for the Rainy Day Fund and $110 million for hurricane relief. Read more…



  • LETTERS / People Will Follow

    May 30, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, Fifty years ago there was a TV episode on ‘outer limits’ called “to serve man”. In it aliens, other planet types, landed and one of the first things they did was present world leaders a book, in their language. They provided earthlings free travel to their planet with extensive marketing about wonders to be found there. Earthlings lined up at the space ships to go. One radical, early on, decided to translate the book presented at the first landing. When most of the earthlings had already departed he discovered that “to serve man” was a cookbook. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Public Hearing on Proposed Rainey Lodge 40 Room Hotel & Restaurant in Downtown Blowing Rock Completed – Tipping Point

    May 20, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY GEORGE WILCOX / Dear Editor, This public hearing was a tipping point for Blowing Rock creating division rather than unity to protect our shared concerns for the future of our community, especially our historic downtown that is our leading economic development asset.   The issues raised during the hearing are not whether the community would benefit from a new hotel, but the polarization created by the developer friendly CUP process which didn’t allow for a full consideration of how the developer, the community, and council could work together for the best outcomes. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Rumors FROM UNDER THE ROCK!

    May 12, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY DAN PHILLIPS / Dear Editor, It’s always fascinating to see what kind of information will sneak out from under a rock.There is a Rumor circulating in Town concerning the Blowing Rock Civic Association. It is FAKE NEWS!The BRCA has not had its Computer Server, (located in George and Betsy’s Garage) hacked by the Russians. NO COLLUSION, NO OBSTRUCTION!!! The thoughts I will share, come from Serving a 4-year sentence on the Town Council, as well as being a merchant and homeowner. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Very Important Decision on Downtown Blowing Rock Development Next Tuesday Night, May 14

    May 9, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY WILLIAM H. CARTER / Dear Editor, A 40 room hotel with restaurant and bar has been proposed for downtown Blowing Rock by a Charlotte developer who previously has developed a Ramada Inn in Dickinson, North Dakota. The proposed hotel, if approved by Blowing Rock Council, will be located on a less than one acre property back of the Speckled Trout restaurant. This is a major decision for Blowing Rock. We urge all interested Blowing Rock citizens to attend next Tuesday’s important council meeting starting at 6:00 P.M. at Town Hall. A hearing on this major matter will resume at Tuesday’s meeting. Any citizen can speak at this hearing after which council will vote to approve or deny the request for a permit for this development. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Considerations on the Plans for the Hwy. 105 Improvements in Boone

    April 30, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY MARK KIRKPATRICK / Dear Editor, Thank you all and  thank DOT for taking full consideration of local suggestions and input. We welcome DOTs visioning for the improvement of Hwy 105. We note that Locals drive these roads every day and have a good feel of Boone traffic flow.   The State and DOT absolutely does a good job. We acknowledge that a good deal of time and energy has gone into the planning done by DOT and the County and the Town for the planned improvements of Hwy 105. In my work I travel to Asheville, Morganton, Banner Elk, Beech Mountain, Linville, Mountain City, Blowing Rock and Jefferson. The roads have gotten and are getting better. Thank you DOT! We seek to provide input to the professionals involved. 1)  As a local and long term user of Poplar Grove South and Hwy 105.  2) As a professional that works and drives regularly the fantastic Hwy 421 to Wilkes; the 321 “on the ground” Super Street concept in Blowing Rock, and Hwy 105, (in much need of improvement) Read more…



  • LETTERS / ‘Our’ Empire Has Been Almost Continually at War Since Plymouth Rock

    March 6, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, “Why, of course, the people don’t want war. Why would some poor slob on a farm want to risk his life in a war when the best he can get out of it is to come back to his farm in one piece? Naturally the common people don’t want war: neither in Russia, nor in England, nor for that matter in Germany. That is understood. But after all, it is the leaders of the country who determine the policy, and it is always a simple matter to drag the people along, whether it is a democracy or a fascist dictatorship or a parliament or a communist dictatorship. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Major Blowing Rock Code Changes Proposed to Promote Downtown Change – Public Hearing Set for February 12, 2019

    January 15, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY WILLIAM H. CARTER / Dear Editor, The Blowing Rock Town Council has set a public hearing Tuesday February 12, 2019 at 6:00 P.M. at Town Hall for consideration of major changes in long standing town codes governing downtown development. Community surveys of residents, property owners and taxpayers have repeatedly listed their top priority to be as spelled out in the Town’s Comprehensive Plan  “…to ensure that the Town’s unique character and quality of life are not compromised.” The question is: How will the major proposed changes, if approved, impact this top resident priority? More information on the proposed code changes is available on our Blowing Rock Civic Association website www.brcivic.com. We urge all interested citizens to attend the February 12, 2019 public hearing and to express your important opinion on these proposed code changes. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Israel These Days

    January 2, 2019 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, Once, an anti-Semite was someone who hated Jews but today it’s pasted on anyone who speaks truth about Israel, especially its policies involving the Palestinians. Virtually nothing is left of Palestine except the Gaza ghetto, the modern equivalent of the Warsaw Ghetto: Moving anyone or anything in and out is controlled by Israel. In its effort to control the justification of their crimes, the Israel Lobby has made “anti-Semite” into an honorable position. We’re all potential Palestinians. ‘Consumers’ don’t know that Israel’s government confiscates entire Palestinian villages and demolishes Palestinian homes to build homes for Israelis. Stories are planted in your head by ‘our free press’ and schools that make no room for exploration of other possibilities filling you with that programming allowing no conflicting information access. Read more…



  • LETTERS / There Are Many Questions That This New Information Raises

    November 20, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY FRANK PACKARD / Dear Editor, So, on 11/15/18 the HCP staff wrote a news article basically recapping the Boone Town Council meeting from October 18, 2018 in regards to the town’s water intake update. In what world is it news to report on a meeting nearly 30 days after the meeting actually took place?  More newsworthy reporting would have been to report on the town council meeting that took place on night of 11/15/18.  Did anyone from the HCP press attend that meeting or even watch the video of the meeting.  If you did,  then you know that the info reported from the 10/18 meeting was old news.  Read more…



  • LETTERS / On Possible Parking Solutions for ASU and Downtown Boone

    November 16, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY KAREN CARTER / Dear Editor, Well, the decisions of the past are coming back to haunt Boone town residents and their civic and business organizations.   The decision to allow transient college students to vote in local elections and even run for local offices had some serious repercussions for longtime townspeople as well as rural communities.  Also, local people soon realized that college officials and professors would be vying to run the town, and also, try to influence the entire county, if not run the county, too. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Magic Moment as The Choir of St. Mary of the Hills Episcopal Church Performed at BRAHM

    November 9, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY GEORGE WILCOX / Dear Editor, Last Sunday a truly magic moment was created in Blowing Rock by a special program presented by two world class organizations The Blowing Rock Art and History Museum and The Choir of St. Mary of the Hills Episcopal Church of Blowing Rock. The program of inspirational words and music with the theme Meditations on Mortality was uniquely touching. The St. Mary’s Choir very ably led by organist and choirmaster Dr. Jim Bumgardner gave a performance of a quality normally expected only in such exalted venues as St. Paul’s Cathedral, London, or King’s College Chapel, Cambridge. The museum with the leadership of Executive Director Lee Carol Giduz provided a beautiful site with great acoustics for an outstanding concert. Congratulations and thanks to all of those talented individuals in the choir and at the museum who do so much to make Blowing Rock such a wonderful town.  Read more…



  • LETTERS / The Recent Board Of Commissioners Candidates Forum

    Oct. 30 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY KAREN CARTER / Dear Editor, These BOC candidates are frankly all very disappointing, to put it mildly, and all cannot refuse entreaties, especially from politically correct groups centered in Boone and ASU. Billy Kennedy and Tim Hodges of the abused third district are virtually twins supposedly running against each other. Amazing. They are pursuing the same, grossly misnamed Smart Growth and Sustainable Development agenda, which is impractical and extremely costly. Wallin, Hodges, Sofield, and Blust are all products of ASU and are closely associated with that admittedly transforming university. All of them gladly support the rec center building, even Blust, who four years ago, in the Fall of 2014, in the dubious HCR group’s forum, which is on video, gingerly and reluctantly, agreed with the idea; however, just a couple weeks ago in the Blowing Rock forum, Blust was more outspoken and critical of the rec center’s construction and the rising costs; he quoted the YMCA’s conclusion from their in depth study of a few years ago re: the economic and operational impracticality of a rec center for this county. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Why Vote?  Why Bother?  Why Take The Time?

    October 29, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY PAULA FINCK / Dear Editor, Why vote?  Why bother?  Why take the time? When my memory takes me back, I can still see my Mom and Dad with their citizenship papers. They had emigrated to America from post-Czarist Russia in 1922. They crossed two continents and an ocean to vote. On election day they dress up, join their neighbors and walk to the polls. If you are able to vote, remember all of those across the world – and here in our own country – who cannot. I’ll see you at the polls.  Read more…



  • LETTERS / Stand Up and Let Them Know What You Think of Them and Their System of Corruption

    October 29, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, We’re told we have a system where we can elect politicians to represent us and prevent corporate abuse but government obviously serves its corporate masters and not citizens. Our legal system is a wholly owned subsidiary of the corporate state, the freedom to dissent without government supervision is mostly gone and our basic civil liberties aren’t protected. What we ‘vote’ for and what we get are almost always two different things, locally and nationally, yet about half of Americans still participate in the ‘voting’ game. The corporate state has passed a series of oppressive laws and set up a vast security and surveillance machinery that obliterates our privacy, allows you to be snatched off the streets by the ‘authorities’ and held without due process in indefinite detention, criminalizing dissent. The corporate state holds in its hands the legal and physical tools to shut us down and has gradually been doing so. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Startups, Accelerators, Investment Funds…oh my!

    Oct. 26, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY VICTORIA POTTER / Dear Editor,  We are beyond excited to announce the launch of Velocity Labs. Aimed at supercharging startups, this program that will help young companies in our area grow faster by building connections with investors and other founders, allocating time for education, personal leadership development and giving them access to mentors that have had seen success in their own right. But hold up…young companies? Investors? Founders? This all sounds like something that belongs down in Raleigh with the techies and hipsters – not in Boone. Economically, this region has been driven by tourism and let’s be real – it is not perceived as a hotbed of innovation. It is however, an area where starting a business is not unusual, it’s even a right of passage. But to scale and grow it beyond the craggy granite of Blowing Rock, or the more gentle slopes west of Boone, is not common. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Rejection of Historic Replicas in Blowing Rock

    Oct. 23, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY RUTHELEN HARTLEY KLUTZ / Dear Editor,  I feel compelled to write this letter about the result of the October 9, 2018 meeting of the Blowing Rock Town Council, specifically concerning the very disappointing and frankly, disgusting outcome and “non-vote”on accepting the free gifts to the Town of Blowing Rock of the replicas of The Declaration of Independence, the United States Constitution and The Bill of Rights from Morganton, N.C. based Foundation Forward group. The replicas of these special documents from our founding fathers are the very foundation our country was built on. Having lived in Blowing Rock my entire life, I have been at many town meetings over the years and have always kept up with anything concerning our town. I can say for sure that this “rejected” gift to our town is the most unbelievable and disgusting action that I have seen in my lifetime.I have thought about this issue every since the October 9th council meeting. How in this world could anyone that lives in this country, our United States of America, even consider turning down a gift such as this one, that is such an important part of our nation’s beginning. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Thank You For Making The 5th Annual Makoto’s Steak House Charity Golf Tournament A Success!

    Oct. 22, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY TIM HARRIS / Dear Editor, Makoto’s Steak House and Japanese Sushi Bar hosted its 5th annual charity golf tournament on Tuesday, September 5, 2018, at Blowing Rock Country Club. The tournament benefitted Blowing Rock CARES, a supplemental food pantry, now housed at Rumple Memorial Presbyterian Church. CARES’ mission is to provide nonperishable food to families experiencing food insecurity in Watauga County, especially those in Blowing Rock Elementary School attendance district. Families are helped in other ways as funds permit. The pantry also supports related efforts by other non-profits, such as WeCan, and other pantries in the county when food supplies run low, or main food sources are diverted to areas experiencing a disaster. CARES is very grateful to Gwen Dhing, owner of Makoto’s, for hosting and organizing the tournament, to the staff at Makoto’s and Gwen’s friends who helped make things happen before and during the tournament, and to Jackie Kirkland who kept the CARES board informed and involved. CARES also thanks Blowing Rock Country Club for making the course and facilities available. Read more…



  • LETTERS / Bipartisan Consensus Funds New Rec Center

    Sept. 21, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY SCOTT ST. CLAIR / Dear Editor, On behalf of High Country Recreation, I would like to thank the county leadership for planning and funding a long needed community recreation center.  With a 5-0 vote, the Board of Commissioners unanimously approved the funding for this new facility. A community recreation center has been a need identified in our community for a long time.  It has been part of the long range Master Plans of both the town and county for decades. It will improve the health of our citizens by providing a place for people to be active all year long.  As a central gathering place, it will allow people from all over the county to strengthen the social bonds that build a strong community.. Read more…



  • LETTERS / The Rec Center New Figures $$

    Sept. 20 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY KAREN CARTER / Dear Editor, As to this recreation center’s new cost figure of $38 M +, in this spendthrift, special interests, ASU-controlled County government, what would one expect ?  There is no doubt the costs will increase further. This is just another tragic example, history is full of them, of an unrestrained mobocracy – a system of powerful minorities.  Some riot in the streets, looting, burning businesses, endangering lives, costing millions and billions in destruction in their ugly attempts to get something for nothing. Then there are others, whether as individuals or groups, who twist the arms, in many cases, literally, threaten weak and spendthrift officials who don’t have the guts or the balls to say “NO!”. Read more…



  • LETTERS / The ‘News’ Never Questions the Legal or Moral Right of the Empire to Attack Whatever Country Is Being Discussed

    August 29, 2018 Letters to the Editor. BY CRAIG DUDLEY / Dear Editor, American politicians and media talk of regime change in Iran as if it’s their divine right, and actively do so about countries worldwide. Most Americans think the 1979 seizure of the American Embassy in Tehran by Islamist revolutionaries was the start of the Empire-Iran conflict. ‘Consumers’ don’t know that those Iranians were reacting to seventy years of American/British interference in their country in which Iran’s oil resources and people were terribly exploited by the Empire and brutally oppressed by an American installed dictator some of that time. Read more…



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