Video A-Go-Go: The Tourist Connection

With local tourism hard-hit by rough economic times, it’s only reasonable that Asheville’s service sector steps up its game by providing new options to downtown’s many visitors. It may no longer be enough, for instance, to have generally clean streets for our tourists to walk on. Don’t we want Asheville’s visitors to have the custom street-crossing experience the deserve? Allow me to present the next level of local service (and performance art): Pedestrian Curling.


Over the last several years, Asheville’s reputation as a “beer city” has grown by leaps and bounds, creating a niche for the city as a tourism destination for brew lovers. So, it can hardly be surprising that the New York City-based Happy Hour Guys decided to pay the AVL a visit to see what all the fuss is about.


Another thing Asheville is rapidly becoming known for is our native stand-up comedy scene, which has gone from practically nonexistent to brag-worthy in only a few short years. Here’s local comic Michael Roach performing a slightly not work safe set at Funny Business.


How popular is our fair city as a tourist destination? So popular that the appeal may even be cross-species, as revealed by the following pair of videos. The first shows that even black bears like to get out for an occasional meander around Town Mountain in search of the area’s gourmet cuisine. In their case, that means the garbage cans of area residents, but one omnivore’s trash is another’s four-course dinner.


Of course, interspecies tourism isn’t limited to the Ursidae. Why, even our bovine brethren enjoy the occasional evening stroll along Asheville’s streets.


Some parts of local culture aren’t as tourist-friendly as others. Graffiti and vandalism have been hot topics in Asheville in recent months, but that hasn’t kept local photographer and occasional Xpress contributor Zen Sutherland from braving a long abandoned Asheville factory to see some of the area’s most illegal art up close and personal.


For our city’s noted creative culture to continue, we must not forget to educate the next generation in our ways. We need to teach them to fly their freak flags high and proud, to dance unashamed to the likes of Dan Deacon, and to never be afraid of a mediocre chroma key effect if it means random people on the internet might be momentarily amused. If this video by an Asheville High School digital media class is any indication, our cultural future is secure.


Each week, dozens upon dozens of interesting local videos are uploaded to YouTube. It’s a lot to keep up with. Did we miss a particularly interesting, recently uploaded local video? Share it by leaving the video’s URL (but not the embed code) in the comment fields below. Also, please mark it Not Work Safe if there’s any controversial content to the video.


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