The Best of WNC Bash was … the best!

Thanks so much to everyone who came out and made last week’s “Best of WNC Bash,” the bestest Best of Bash EVER! Here’s a slide show from the awesome celebration, which featured epic sets from Josh Phillips Folk Festival, Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, Sons of Ralph and Asheville Vaudeville, as well as an amazing feast provided by some of Asheville’s tastiest restaurants.

We’re already looking forward to seeing you next year – we’ve scheduled the fourth annual Best of Bash for Saturday, Dec. 3, 2011 at the Orange Peel!

Photos by Margaret Williams and Jonathon Welch.

Special thanks to host Tom Scheve of the Asheville Disclaimer, who brought the house down with a hilarious, good-natured roast of all things “Best Of WNC.” He sent along a transcript of some of his material — all satire — from the night:

I’d like to announce some of the winners from this year’s “Best of WNC” readers’ poll.

The Best of Bash is brought to you by Mountain Xpress, voted “Most Racially Diverse Workplace.” Nope, that’s a typo. Oh, voted “Best Way to Kill Some Time Before Quitting to Write a Book” … Xpress also placed first in: “Best Distributor of Camera-Wielding Hipsters (under 6-foot-tall category).


I’d like to thank the Orange Peel, which was voted No. 1 for “Best Place to Hear Live Music” as well as “Best Full-Body Cavity Search at the Door.” Actually, there was a tie for “Best Place to Dance,” the other winner was Planned Parenthood, I thought that was in poor taste, but the people have spoken.

Best place for leaf-peeping: Blue Ridge Parkway. I thought that was nice. I’m like a leaf peeper, but instead of leaves it’s bedroom windows … and I do it all year round.

Best way to spend a day in Asheville: Number one, “Chasing a drifter through the woods.” The second best way to spend a day in Asheville: “Pursuing a complete derangement of the senses.” And coming in third was “Talking feverishly about spiritual sh—to a complete stranger.” That’s what I like to do, right after the derangement of the senses but before I chase a drifter through the woods.

Worst way to spend a day in Asheville: “Watching a black bear devour your young.” That’s a downer. I’m kind of scared of black bears, and I had a friend that said, “You don’t have to worry; black bears don’t get any bigger than six feet tall and 500 pounds.” I was like, “Really, because those are the exact dimensions of something that scares the piss out of me. I’ll keep that in mind.”

There are some important differences between black bears and men from Asheville. First off, when a black bear wakes up after sleeping for three months, it’s got sh—to do. Another difference? If a black bear chained itself to the front door of a bank, people would stop to think about the meaning of its actions. Another difference: Black bears have a chance of making it in the entertainment industry. One more difference between black bears and men from Asheville: Black bears don’t do interpretive dances to mourn the foreskin they lost during infant circumcision. Final difference: When it comes to music, fashion and slang, local black bears aren’t five years behind New York bears.

Let’s talk a little bit about West Asheville, go through a few more Best of WNC categories.

Best Hipster Bar: Trick question, because the words “Best” and “Hipster” don’t belong in the same sentence.

Organic Mechanic, of course, won “Best Place to Get Brake Pads made of Peat Moss.”

Orbit Video: “Best local video store” and “Best Place to Rent an Adult Video If You’ve Never Heard of the Internet.”

Sunny Point of course won “Best Breakfast,” which they’ve won for years. Appropriate, since that’s their average wait time.

Best Place to Run into President Obama: 12 Bones Smokehouse.

Worst Place to Run into President Obama: The bathroom of 12 Bones Smokehouse, Obama takes super-stinky poops, one of the most fiercely guarded secrets during the 2008 elections.

Best way to enter the Asheville Police Station: “Drunk as hell, eyes shut, leaning on police officer, grinning” won for the 10th straight year, followed closely by “With a mustache, a list of demands, and an empty shoebox duct-taped to your chest.” Interestingly there were no votes for “In a uniform.”

Best running event: Bele Chere 5K, running in place while you wait in line at Bele Chere for a Port-a-John.

Best shape to form when banging on percussion instruments: “A circle!” Interesting. Second place was “A square.” There’s a triangle group that plays the triangle and forms a square up at Pack Place.

Best day care: Asheville Jewish Center, also voted best place to have your child’s cheek pinched by an over-doting random grandmother. That one was just for you, kids.

For “Best Home School,” there was a tie: It was split 3,000 ways. I thought about home-schooling my kid, but then I took a tour of the home school she’d be attending … that place is a dump. You can’t teach kids there, maybe someone else’s kid, but nothing’s too good for my kid. I made a deal with her: “You’re going to go to public school, but I’m going to save up to send you to home college.” It’s going to be about two hundred and fifty bucks a semester, for weed, it’s a weed-intensive home college, the entire house is the teachers’ lounge, and a pretty seedy one …

I wanted to put my daughter in boarding school, but I couldn’t afford to, so I went with the public option: the orphanage. But I wanted her to get a well-rounded education, so I bounced her around from one orphanage to the next.

Local Hero: Cecil Bothwell beat out Gordon Smith, just barely out-progressived each other. Gordon Smith’s LBGTVQM Affordable Housing High-heel Clean the River Multi-Modal Marriagethon was answered by Cecil’s Universal At-Risk Billy Graham Hemp March and Atheist Revival and Drum Circle Extravaganza.

Local Eye-Sore: “BB&T building.” It tied with “Glaucoma.” We had some literalists voting this year.

Splashville, voted “Best place to wash your child’s bottom when you’re out in public.”

Pack Square Pergola won “Best Place to Make a Victory Speech After Exiting the Courthouse and Being Acquitted of Armed Robbery on a Technicality.”

Best Head Shop: Octopus Garden, not to be confused with the best place to shop for … oh, never mind.

Sazerac: Best place to have a cocktail while bad-mouthing Matt Mittan. Congratulations, Sazerac.

Best Greek Restaurant: “Apollo Flame Bistro.”

Best Time for Greek-style Servings: “After two glasses of wine, in the dark, with someone who knows what they’re doing.”

Best Late-Night Diner. Congratulations to Rosetta’s, they narrowly beat out 51 Grill in a close competition, so congratulations to Rosetta’s on squeaking out a victory over the gas station next door.

Asiana Grand Buffet won “Best Place to Cheer up an Obese Western North Carolinian Other Than the Disney World Food Court” 

Best 21st Century Anachronism: “Harvest Records,” which doubles as a repair shop for Commodore 64s, and they will also fit you for some parachute pants.

Mamacitas won for “Best cheap lunch.” Personally, I think Salvation Army got robbed.

Tops for Shoes, “Best Local Shoe Store.” Last time I allowed a kindly Southern gentleman to help me out of my loafers, I was a little drunk in the YMCA locker room.

YMCA: “Best place to work out” and “Best place to engage an otherwise naked man in a conversation about his flip-flops while barring his exit from the shower.”

Firestorm Cafe won “Best Place to Join the Revolution by Skipping Out on Your Tab.”

And Trophy Club started serving lunch this year, and was voted “Best Place to Stiff Your Waitress.”

Best Place to be an exhibitionist: “The Full-body X-ray at Asheville Regional Airport,” deeeeelicious.

I’m one of the people who does the Asheville Disclaimer, I bring this up because there was a category this year, “Feature Xpress Needs to Add,” and the winner was “Satire.” I found that hurtful.

Best thing in Asheville we love to do but we’re not very good at: “Public art,” “Providing spiritual guidance,” “Riding bicycles on busy roads.”

Best local outdoor activity that might get you laid: 1. “Drinking and picnicking by yourself off the Blue Ridge Parkway.” 2. “Snowboarding into the Annual Bridal Expo at the Grove Park Inn with an erection and proof of employment.”

Jack of the Wood: Favorite Bar to give the bartender a look of unbridled mental illness and tell her you moved to Asheville because of the vortex.

Best free public entertainment: “Ripping off tourists 7 days a week.” and “lingering a little when you change your clothes in front of your dog.”


About Jake Frankel
Jake Frankel is an award-winning journalist who enjoys covering a wide range of topics, from politics and government to business, education and entertainment.

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4 thoughts on “The Best of WNC Bash was … the best!

  1. Jeff

    That was a fun party.

    Thanks for posting Tom’s jokes. They were rapid-fire. Nice to get to read through and enjoy them again.

  2. Juan Rico

    “Most likely to write another story about themselves: Mountain Xcess.” – that’s not a typo.

  3. James P. Fisher

    I, for one, am planning on home-collegeing my kids now…Thanks to all for a great Best of Bash – and for helping MANNA FoodBank out!

  4. I LOVE it! The Bash was so much fun :-) Thanks for reporting on it, hosting the party,putting out the poll, and posting the fun pictures.

    I really appreciate everything the Xpress does for this community and for all the Arts and Entertainment activities that happen in it. For me, working as a publicist and looking into weeklies all over the country, I truly have to say that Asheville is lucky to have such a community supportive paper and website with the Mountain Xpress.


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