URBAN FOREST  Unaware of the controversy over their fate, 23 mature oaks stand on a knoll overlooking Coxe Avenue. Photo by Virginia Daffron

Oaks’ last stand: South Slope urban forest won’t get city funds

If the 23 mature oak trees at 11 Collier Ave. on Asheville’s South Slope are to escape the chainsaw, it will have to be without the city’s help. While City Council followed through on its commitment to explore possible strategies for preserving the urban forest, in the end Council decided that committing resources to the effort in advance of significant private fundraising wasn’t a responsible use of taxpayer assets.

EAT THAT: "My love of food comes through eating it," says author Simran Sethi. "I have gardens, I know how to cook, but what I really love is to eat. And I don't think I'm alone." Sethi's latest book, which includes interviews with several Ashevilleans, encourages everyday consumers to partake in food-supply chains that preserve biodiversity and terroir.

Simran Sethi revisits Asheville’s ‘grain-to-loaf’ wheat movement during book release events

Sethi’s book warns readers that a slow erosion of food biodiversity could affect beloved staples like coffee, chocolate, wine and bread. The author returns to Asheville, where she interviewed several members of local food-supply chains, for two tasting events during her book release tour.

Frand, navigating Smokey Park Highway in 2014

Asheville disclaimer­: Asheville man determined to ride bicycle all winter for no clear reason

The Asheville Disclaimer is parody/satire. Asheville, Monday — The 2.5-mile commute Scott Frand makes on bicycle between his home and his work will get significantly more difficult and unbearable as winter worsens, to the apparent delight of Frand. “Last winter, I had to finally switch to my car when the snow got too bad and […]

SNAPSHOTS IN TIME: Comparisons between Asheville’s estimated homeless population in 2005 and 2015 with other cities in North Carolina show mixed results in driving down the amount of homeless individuals statewide. While the amount of chronically homeless individuals decreased in most municipalities, the repercussions of the 2008 recession and a local shortage of affordable housing has stagnated efforts at decreasing the total number of people experiencing some form of homelessness. Statistics gathered from the N.C. Coalition to End Homelessness & the United States Census Bureau

Gimme shelter: In wake of 10-year plan to end homelessne­ss, local agencies regroup

Although chronic homelessness has been curtailed substantially since 2005, the combination of a severe economic downturn, an acute shortage of affordable housing and the rising cost of living has hindered the overall progress in eradicating homelessness. Despite those setbacks, partners in the project are forging ahead with new initiatives to combat housing insecurity and ensure that those in need of shelter get it.

Members of the Be Loved Community, the formerly homeless and city government officials met in front of City Hall on Tuesday, Dec. 8 to bring attention to the continued need for affordable housing in Asheville. Photo by Max Hunt

BeLoved Community members hold affordable housing rally outside City Hall

Members of the Be Loved Community, formerly homeless residents of Asheville and several city council members gathered outside of City Hall prior to City Council’s weekly meeting on Tuesday, Dec. 8, to listen to firsthand accounts of homelessness, voice support for the city’s affordable housing initiatives and encourage members of the Asheville community to stand […]

HOMECOMING: The staff of Mountain Housing Opportunities celebrated the grand opening of The Villas at Fallen Spruce Apartments along with their partners on the project and local and state representatives on Thursday, Dec. 3 with a tour of the facility and housingwarming fundraiser. Photo courtesy of Mountain Housing Opportunities.

Home, sweet home: Mountain Housing Opportunit­ies celebrates The Villas at Fallen Spruce Apartments

In its latest efforts to increase the availability of affordable housing, the nonprofit organization Mountain Housing Opportunities hosted a ribbon-cutting ceremony and gift registry drive Thursday evening at its brand new apartment complex, The Villas at Fallen Spruce Apartments, just off New Leicester Highway. MHO staff, partner organizations, sponsors, local and state government officials were […]

REVIVING THE HOMESTEAD: North Carolina has long been defined by its agriculture industry. As development pressures and rising land costs threaten to consume viable farmland acorss the state, public officials and private land trusts are working to preserve N.C.'s farming heritage and revitalize existing farms. Photo courtesy of Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy.

Eyes on the future: Saving WNC’s farms

Robin Reeves is the sixth generation to grow up on her family’s Madison County farm — a lineage that dates back to before the Civil War. Reeves spent much of her youth helping her parents raise cattle, burley tobacco and tomatoes as well as her extended family in Sandy Mush. As an adolescent, she sold […]

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 […]

Asheville Music School Rock Band closed the event with a rendition of "Sweet Dreams." Photo by Jeff Tallman

Give!Local kickoff: Very auspicious and very Asheville

Give!Local raised nearly $1,000 in its opening day and many of the nonprofits raised additional money at the kickoff event. Thirty nonprofits, their boards, two food vendors, three bands, a dinosaur and a ghost pepper all convened along with about 200 people from the public.

Community Calendar Highlights­: Give!Local nonprofit events from 11/04 through 11/12

This week the Community Calendar is highlighting events that are sponsored by nonprofits that are participating in the Give!Local campaign. The campaign is raising money for 30 worthy local nonprofits that make a big difference where we live.  These events are wonderful examples of some of the great work that these nonprofits do within our communities! ANIMALS […]