A COVETED HERB: In 2012, the U.S. exported 45,000 pounds of wild ginseng and 342,000 pounds of the cultivated woodland crop, pictured above. The dried root sells for $500 to $2,000 per pound. Photo by Heather Wood Buzzard

Sustainabl­e ginseng: legendary herb’s best-kept secret

BY HEATHER WOOD BUZZARD November marks the tail end of “’sang” season, but relics of the harvest time remain: hand-scrawled signs declaring “Will Buy Ginseng – No License Needed” and reports of recent poaching on both private and public lands. Ginseng hunters and buyers have been everywhere this autumn, but where’s the ginseng? People reach […]

Each of the Section B alternatives show different visions of crossing the French Broad River. To view a full size of this image,  click here.

Crunch time for I-26 connector: DOT seeks public input as key decision nears

After more than two decades, the NCDOT is getting the ball rolling on the I-26 connector project. And though actual construction is still years away, the next few weeks are the public’s best chance to influence the route of a massive infrastructure project that, regardless of which option is chosen, will cost hundreds of millions of dollars, displace dozens of homes and businesses, and change the face of Asheville.

Illustration by Norn Cutson

Thanksgivi­ng horror stories: Asheville residents tell tales of holiday travails

Thanksgiving can be a heartwarming holiday full of good food and family. But kitchen calamities, unruly house guests, uncooperative appliances and other snafus can sometimes conspire to dim Thanksgiving Day’s rosy glow. Some Asheville residents — including a few Xpress staffers — were willing to share their own stories about surviving Thanksgiving.

LOOK HOMEWARD, ASHEVILLE! Asheville's current boom in tourism and development mirrors the state of the city during Thomas Wolfe's life in several respects. The author, who wrote extensively about the changes he saw around him, may offer clues as to how the city can address current concerns and questions facing its residents. Left photo by MAx Hunt. Right photo courtesy of North Carolina Collection, Pack Memorial Public Library, Asheville, NC.

Of time and the city: Issues facing Asheville in Wolfe’s youth mirror today’s concerns

Asheville and environs have seen considerable change in the 77 years since Wolfe’s death, yet many of the aspects he wrote (and sometimes fumed) about seem uncannily familiar. And as current residents ponder the challenges the city faces today, a look at several of the celebrated author’s key themes might prove instructive.


Prizes offered to this weekend’s Give!Local donors

Some lucky folks are going to win some pretty great prizes this weekend, according to organizers of Give!Local, Mountain Xpress‘ end-of-year grassroots philanthropy project. Here’s the deal: Donate $10 or more during Give Weekend — between Friday, Nov. 20 and Sunday, Nov. 22 — via the givelocalguide.org website, and you’ll not only get Give!Local’s fantastic […]

CAN DO: Oskar Blues Brewery’s CAN’d Aid Foundation has offered $1.2 million in grants to quirky organizations since its inception two years ago. The underlying mission is to promote towns, active lifestyles, arts and the environment.

Small bites: Oskar Blues Big Money Chili-onaire cook-off promotes ‘do-goodery’

Oskar Blues’ CAN’d Aid Foundation is seeking competitive talents for its chili cook-off in Brevard. Meanwhile, FEAST and Asheville Middle School team up for a pie fundraiser; MetroWines’ Anita Riley invites two women behind Hi-Wire Brewing’s branding to the shop; Smiling Hara Tempeh’s Hempeh makes its way to grocery shelves; and Lex 18 hosts an Appalachian-themed evening.