Trailblaze­r: UNCA professor Dee James still leads the way

When Deborah “Dee” James walked tentatively onto the UNC Asheville campus in 1969, it was as one of the first African-Americans to integrate the women’s dormitories. Nowadays, however, she downplays that pioneer status. “It was the times; it was happenstance. If it wasn’t me, then it would have been somebody. Also, because I was 17, […]

Bigger is better: A circuitous path took folk singer Jeff Thompson (far right) away from music to pursue a degree in transpersonal counseling psychology. But now he’s back to the stage with a full band and a beefed-up sound. Photo by Micah MacKenzie

Triumphant return

Singer-songwriter Jeff Thompson stands poised for big things in Asheville. In less than a year, he’s generated a sizable following through his weekly gigs at 5 Walnut and is preparing to introduce his BEEG Band at a much larger local venue, The Grey Eagle on Friday, March 28. The concert will not only showcase new […]

GET ON THE BUS: Tara Whitsitt, founder of Fermentation on Wheels, will bring her mobile cultured-food education project to Asheville in April. Photo courtesy of Tara Whitsitt


Fermentation on Wheels Traveling food-preservation-education project Fermentation on Wheels will bring its mobile classroom and fermentation lab — a converted 1986 International Harvester school bus — to Asheville for a donation-based food starter-culture exchange, workshop and community potluck the weekend of April 5-6. The visit is one stop on a joint tour with the nonprofit […]

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Animal planet

In a lot of ways, The Stray Birds and Wild Ponies (who both play WNC on March 22) are alike. Both are hard-touring folk music trios that revolve around the music partnership between one man and one woman. They boast classic folk harmonies, acoustic basses and feral fauna monikers. And they use similar instruments to play a similar sort of music — to the point where you might be forgiven for confusing the two.

Community is …

A little kindness by Fox Smith The Learning Community School fifth grade The week of the big snow, I went and asked my neighbor if I could go sledding on his hill. Not only did he say “yes” but he came out and played with me. I love living in Asheville because of how kind […]


Family by Matthew Griffith Community High School Wanna know what CHS means to me? Family. I feel like CHS is a family that backs one another to the end. My view on school has changed since I moved to CHS. I moved from a school that judges people by their appearance. To them I was […]

Community service

Community service by Julie Hollifield. 11th grade, Owen High School Last semester, my English class participated in a community service project. We were writing persuasive essays on environmental issues. This led us to want to get involved in helping our local environment. We took a field trip to the Dr. John Wilson Community Garden here […]


The Life of a paintbrush by Meadie Jernigan The Learning Community School Fifth grade A fuzzy tip hovers over the canvas. Should it paint a farm with fields of cows sheep and chickens? Maybe abstract with thousands of lines stuck together? Or possibly a forest with life and wonder? Even painting a bear in a […]

SWEET COUPLE: Catawba Brewing and French Broad Chocolate Lounge will marry the flavors of chocolate and beer at a five-course tasting on Friday, March 21. Photo by Nathan Metcalf


Highland announces major expansion While it’s easy to get caught up in the excitement of new brewery openings, it’s also exciting to see that Asheville’s oldest craft brewery is not sitting still. According to Highland Brewing Vice President Leah Wong Ashburn, the company is gearing up for an expansion that could allow output to double […]

Community by the cinquain

Asheville By Loren Fun Old, special Exciting, Interesting, Amazing An extremely creative city Asheville Asheville By: Anonymous Weird, bizarre Drumming, expressing, entertaining The people, places and hippies Carolina Asheville By: Lola Special place Unique, creative Thinking, saying, doing Stay weird Asheville Lake Toxaway By: Katt Magical, mysterious Hiking, camping, climbing Beautiful sunsets between the mountains […]

My heroes

Nurses are my heroes My mom is a nurse.  She helps us not get sick.  She works in the emergency department in the hospital, so she helps a LOT of different people, at different times.  During the snowstorm, she stayed at the hospital for 3 days to take care of people!  She helps people not […]

Catherine & Katharine, Sisters Wee Bit Irish will tell their tales at the The Boarding House Venue in Saluda. Photo courtesy of Kate Brighton

Shamrock shake-up

Whether you choose to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by donning your most flattering shade of green, embarking on a corned beef and cabbage bender or simply practicing a fake Irish accent in public — there’s a place for that in Asheville. And if none of that strikes your fancy, there are a multitude of Irish-themed […]

BALANCING ACT: With the drinks menu at Rhubarb, bartender Hank Fuseler tries to maintain a healthy balance between cocktail geekery and the tried-and-true. Photo by Michael Franco


In the new, regular interview series Behind the Bar, Michael Franco talks to some of the talented men and women who keep the beer, wine and spirits flowing at some of Asheville’s favorite watering holes. Many a bar has been blamed for luring students away from their studies. But in Hank Fuseler’s case, the call […]

LOCAL GOODNESS: If you don’t have time to make your own quiche, many local eateries offer the protein-packed finger food by the slice for a grab-and-go meal. Pictured is a piece of spinach-feta quiche from City Bakery. Photo by Nathan Metcalf


I once read a science fiction novel where quiche was the pizza of the future. I don't remember much else about the book, but the quiche idea stuck with me. The beauty of quiche, much like pizza, is that you can eat it with your hands. What differentiates it from pizza is the protein-and-veggie-to-carbohydrate ratio. […]

Save cover for pressing issues

I have to admit, dear Mountain Xpress, I was put off and disappointed by your cover story, “Going Up?” [Feb. 19, Xpress]. With the wide range of social/political/environmental issues that are currently affecting our community, I was truly surprised that your lead story featured the elevator inside the Flatiron building, its operators and some scandalous […]