Come out to the Monte Vista Hotel on Thursday, Dec. 15, from 6-8 p.m. to find out which tree took the top prize in the annual Deck the Trees benefit for Swannanoa Christian Ministries. Photo courtesy of the organizers.

Weekend Picks: Friday, Dec. 9 – Sunday, Dec. 11

Check out this list of weekend highlights and visit the Mountain Xpress Community Calendar for a complete list of weekend events! FRIDAY Deck the Trees Benefit libbafairleigh@gmail.com, facebook.com/montevistahotel FR (12/2) through SU (12/25), 10am-9pm – Proceeds from donations at this exhibition of unique hand-decorated Christmas trees benefit the Swananoa Valley Christian Ministry Fuel Fund. Awarding of […]

Nearly 30 city residents, most of whom said they live in South Asheville, turned out for a public meeting on the city's comprehensive planning process. Photo by Virginia Daffron

City residents weigh in on comprehens­ive plan

Residents of South Asheville shared their ideas about city priorities in a public input session held at noon on Wednesday, Dec. 7 at the South Buncombe Library. The session was one of five hosted in different parts of the city on Dec. 6 and 7 by the city’s planning and urban design department as part of the city’s comprehensive plan process.

NEW PLANS, NEW CONCERNS: Members of the Swannanoa community met with Community Advisory Group members, federal and state environmental officials Thurday, Dec. 1 to discuss future plans for the Chemtronics Superfund site. Photo by Max Hunt

For the record: EPA reviews 2016 Record of Decision, presence of new contaminan­ts at Chemtronic­s site

Swannanoa residents met with members of the Community Advisory Group, federal and state environmental protection officials Thursday evening to review the 2016 Record of Decision for the Chemtronics Superfund site. The EPA also revealed the presence of a new contamination detection on the property.

Melissa Wilson with a student. Photo by Emma Grace Moon

Julian Award winner Melissa Wilson: Commitment and empathy in the classroom

At 19, Melissa Wilson was a single mother, working at McDonald’s and living below the poverty line. She decided to enroll in a class at A-B Tech that was part of the college’s jobs placement program. With it came free child care. Unfortunately, the class itself didn’t speak to Wilson. “I was training for an […]

The Buncombe County Board of Commissioners will have its first post-election meeting with three new members and Brownie Newman taking over as chair.

Resolution against discrimina­tion, committee appointmen­ts among first issues new board will consider

The newly constituted Buncombe County Board of Commissioners will hold its first post-election meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 6. The agenda is relatively light and will be the first helmed by Brownie Newman, who is transitioning from commissioner to chair, and will be the inaugural meeting for Commissioners Jasmine Beach-Ferrara and Robert Pressley. The board will […]

Map of area to be remediated. Graphic from draft remediation plan by Pioneer Technologies Corporation

Few attend public hearing on DuPont Forest cleanup

A “doughnut hole” of contamination in DuPont State Recreational Forest likely will be cleaned up in the coming year as a remediation plan moves forward. State officials held a public comment session on Thursday, Dec. 1 at the Transylvania County Public Library, but only a half dozen people attended and just one came forward to comment. […]

Mama Maisha is an Asheville-based nonprofit focused on preventing maternal death in Africa and developing nations. The organization has been saving lives and empowering women in Tanzanian villages. They are hosting a fundraiser and concert at Lexington Avenue Brewery on Friday, Dec. 2 at . Photo courtesy of Mama Maisha

Weekend Picks: Friday, Dec. 2 through Sunday, Dec. 4

December is underway, and there are plenty of holiday events to choose from. Whether you are interested in local holiday art and craft sales, Christmas theater shows or a jingle-bell themed 5K — this weekend has you covered. Check out this list of weekend highlights and visit the Mountain Xpress Community Calendar for a complete list of weekend […]

Susan Sides. Photo by Emma Grace Moon

Julian Award winner Susan Sides: Feeding our hunger for food and community

Since she was a child, Susan Sides has had her fingers in the dirt, helping her mother with the family garden. That early experience had a profound impact, fostering a passion that continues to this day: Since its inception in 2009, Sides has worked as executive director and garden manager at the Lord’s Acre in […]