Around Town: MakeHER Market celebrates International Women’s Day at new location

HIGHLIGHTING WOMEN: The MakeHER Market, which launched in 2019 to mark International Women's Day, will take place Saturday, March 5, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., at Reynolds Village. Photo courtesy of MakeHER Market

International Women’s Day has been celebrated in various forms around the world since the early 20th century. In 2019, three local women-owned businesses got in on the festivities with the launch of MakeHER Market.

“Asheville has such a rich variety of female entrepreneurs — those who work with their own handcrafted goods and those who work with craft and farm communities in other parts of the world,” says Mandy Broderick, owner of fair trade business Maadili Collective and one of the creators of the event. “The MakeHER Market is an effort to highlight the enterprising ventures and empowerment of women everywhere.”

After being canceled in 2021 due to COVID-19, the market returns Saturday, March 5, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., at Reynolds Village. Previous renditions were held at The Mothlight in West Asheville before it closed in June 2020.

Incite Coffee Co., owned by Margaret Gibbs, and Hello Gorgeous! Professional Bra Fitting & More, owned by Kim Broshar and Michelle Nailen, are the other companies responsible for the market, which will feature goods for sale from 20 vendors, including Pride & Archive, Appalachian Woven, Blue Ridge Plant Co., Midnight Mountain Gems and Amelia’s Pastries.

Among the items for sale will be fair trade coffee, jewelry and home décor as well as locally made art, accessories and botanicals. Shoppers also will have the opportunity to donate to the Hello Gorgeous! Bra Drive for Helpmate, a local nonprofit that assists victims of domestic violence.

“All women deserve to wear properly fitting bras, and our bra drive will help make that happen,” Nailen says.

The market takes place at Hello Gorgeous! Professional Bra Fitting & More, 61 N. Merrimon Ave., Suite 107. For more information, go to

Class act

A group of students from The Franklin School of Innovation will present an independently organized TEDx event at N.C. Stage Company on Tuesday, March 8, 6-9 p.m. The theme of the conference is “Molding the Future.”

Teacher Lora Hawkins came up with the idea last spring. “She had helped students run a TEDx conference when she was teaching in Kuwait, so she was able to use her experience to help us organize the conference,” says 10th grader Brody Sandifer-Williams.

Mathew Reynolds and Chad Gerber are the initiative’s senior advisers.

Other student organizers are Kylee Roark, Julia Freeman, Gabe Kirsch, Ayden Stewart and Addison Hudgins.

The conference will feature presentations from 12 speakers, including Franklin students Oliver Edwards, Ryan Heasley, Sarah Pusser and Emily Cortright.

The TEDx initiative grants free licenses to people around the world to organize TED-style events in their communities with TED Talks and live speakers.

The N.C. Stage Company is at 15 Stage Lane. For more information or to purchase $15 tickets, go to

No place like home

The Swannanoa Valley Museum & History Center’s 2022 online series “This Is Home: Western North Carolina, Past and Present” launches Monday, March 7, 6:30-8 p.m. It will run monthly through Monday, Nov. 7.

The series explores key historical, cultural and ecological aspects of the region, including the age of the French Broad River, the founding of Asheville and the origin of the Brown Mountain lights. Researchers and experts from across the country will make presentations.

The March 7 lecture, “The French Broad River, Past and Present,” will be presented by John Ross, author of Through the Mountains: The French Broad River and Time. The event will take the audience on an aerial tour of the French Broad’s natural and cultural history.

Tickets are $10 for museum members and $15 for the general public. For more information or to buy tickets, go to

War and remembrance

R.J. “Del” Del Vecchio, who served in the 1st Marine Division in Vietnam, has been making presentations about the war to high school and college students for decades. He says photographs are often the most effective way of educating people who have no firsthand experience of combat.

“We are living in an age in which visual stimuli have become very important, and seeing actual images of events has a lot more impact than any verbal description,” says Del Vecchio, who was a combat photographer from December 1967 to November 1968. “Consider the two most famous photos of the war, the general shooting a man in the head in the streets of Saigon and a naked little girl running burned down a road. For most people, examining an image grabs their attention and focus much better, stimulates thinking and questioning and leads to more of a dialogue.”

Del Vecchio will discuss his use of combat photographs during his presentation, “Talking About Vietnam,” on Thursday, March 10, 2-3 p.m. at the Transylvania County Election Center.

His work involved assignments with various Marine units and engagements, including battles during the 1968 Tet Offensive. He was wounded in a major encounter in May 1968 and returned to duty in July of that year. Del Vecchio became involved in veterans affairs in 1998.

“I think it’s important for young people especially to hear about the history of the conflict between democracy and communism, and to understand that however many faults we have and mistakes we made, we were not the evil colonialists or just totally mistaken fools to ever go there,” he says. “And that there are really critical lessons to learn from those events, which when ignored, bring on tragedies like Afghanistan.”

The Transylvania County Election Center is at 150 South Gaston St. in Brevard. For more information about the free event, go to

The legend of Zelda

Postcards to Zelda, an exhibit of small works created to celebrate the life of Zelda Fitzgerald, will be shown at The Refinery Creator Space on Friday, March 4, 5-8 p.m.

“We have invited local artists to imagine that they received a postcard from Zelda, and this show is their response,” the gallery says in a press release. Featured local artists include Deanna Chilian, Rhonda Davis, Dawn Eareckson, Cheryl Eugenia Barnes, Annie Gustely, Elise Okrend, Debbie Palminteri, Kyley Shurrona and Joyce Thornburg.

Fitzgerald was an American socialite novelist and painter known for her wit and flair for fashion. Along with her husband, novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald, she became an emblem of the Jazz Age. She spent much of the last 12 years of her life at Asheville’s Highland Hospital, where she died in a March 10, 1948, fire.

The Refinery Creator Space is at 207 Coxe Ave. For more information or to register for the free event, go to

Seeking restoration stories

Have you been inspired to repair or update a barn on your property as a result of the work of the Appalachian Barn Alliance? If so, the group wants to hear from you.

“We would like to highlight and record your work on our website and include stories on our e-bulletins and Instagram — maybe even on our YouTube channel,” the group says in a press  release.

Contact the alliance by emailing with photos and a brief description of what you did and when, and a general location of the barn.

For more information, visit

Editor’s note: This story was updated on March 3. Original reporting incorrectly claimed Lora Hawkins no longer taught at the Franklin School of Innovation. 


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About Justin McGuire
Justin McGuire is a UNC Chapel Hill graduate with more than 30 years of experience as a writer and editor. His work has appeared in The Sporting News, the (Rock Hill, SC) Herald and various other publications. Follow me @jmcguireMLB

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