TO LEARN FROM THE PAST: Darin Waters, UNC Asheville assistant professor of history, opens the 2016 African-Americans in WNC and  Southern Appalachia Conference at the YMI Cultural Center. This year's event starts on Oct. 19. Photo courtesy of UNC Asheville

Conference ties African-American past with future

The African Americans in WNC and Southern Appalachia Conference returns to Asheville for its fourth year Thursday, Oct. 19, through Saturday, Oct. 21. Originally organized to highlight research on the historical African-American presence in the region, the conference is broadening its scope this year with the theme, “Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.”

PAST AND FUTURE: Oliver G. Prince Jr., one of the first students to integrate Asheville School, meets with current students. Photo courtesy of Asheville School

Asheville School alu­m looks back at racial integratio­n

Editor’s note: This article was submitted by Asheville School. On Thursday, Sept. 21, Oliver G. Prince Jr., class of 1971, addressed the Asheville School community on the 50th year of racial integration at the school. Prince and his classmates, Al McDonald and Frank DuPree, were the first three African-American students enrolled in Asheville School in 1967. […]

TO THE RESCUE: The willingness of U.S. Army pilots to make dangerous maneuvers in heavily forested mountain terrain ultimately rescued more than 100 people in the aftermath of the March 1993 blizzard. Photo courtesy of Great Smoky Mountains Association

How to not die in the Smokies

When you think about the Great Smoky Mountains, your thoughts might not immediately jump to death and destruction. But that is exactly what adventure travel writer David Brill of Morgan County, Tenn., dives into with his new book, “Into the Mist: Tales of Death and Disaster, Mishaps and Misdeeds, Misfortune and Mayhem in Great Smoky Mountains National Park.”

LIVING HISTORY: A musket volley salute was fired over the burial ground by the Sons of the American Revolution color guard during the dedication of the Jones Family burial ground. Photo by Cindy Kunst

Jones family burial ground at Biltmore honored by Sons of American Revolution

The sleepy resting place of Revolutionary War veteran Joshua Jones and his family turned uncharacteristically lively on Saturday, Sept. 7, as a memorial dedication ceremony hosted by Jones’ direct descendants brought family members, Biltmore staff and historical reenactors to the site on the western side of present-day Biltmore Estate.

WASTE WATCHERS: Largely unheralded, the Buncombe County Metropolitan Sewerage District ensures that the waste generated by its approximately 130,000 customers is properly treated and disposed of before it enters local waterways. The agency is currently in the midst of a $266 million capital improvement project that will upgrade its plant facilities for the future. Photo courtesy of MSD

MSD upgrades its infrastruc­ture with capital improvemen­t projects

To fulfill its critical mission and increase its capacity to deal with a growing service area and customer base, MSD is in the midst of a $266 million capital improvement project, which will help ensure that the community’s waste is properly handled and safely disposed of.