TAKING OUT THE TRASH: In 2011, the Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy acquired an 88-acre tract adjoining the  2,767-acre Sandy Mush Game Lands. During one workday in 2016, volunteers removed 180 tires and 12 contractor-sized bags of garbage. Photo courtesy of SAHC

Protection just the first step for conservati­on nonprofits

As local land trusts bring thousands of acres under protection, the challenges of maintaining the health of those lands grow. And raising money for ongoing efforts to control invasive plant species, deter pests and protect water quality can be a much tougher sell than the initial push to save a beloved tract from the threat of development.

ENCIRCLED: At Arms Around ASD, students participate in Moving Meditation, a class that fosters relaxation and focus, builds internal energy and sharpens executive functioning skills. Photo by Michele Louzon

Local support grows for those with autism, sensory processing disorder

Support in Western North Carolina is growing for those with autism spectrum disorder and sensory processing disorder as nonprofits, mental health organizations and neighborhood businesses strive to provide sensory-friendly environments. “Children can have sensory processing disorder or sensory integration issues all by themselves and not have autistic behaviors, but it does flip. If a child has […]

NOT POCKET CHANGE: Real estate agents and architects are increasingly integrating an awareness of the effects of climate change on the local real estate market into their practices. These professionals can be crucial sources of information for clients considering major investments in real estate. Photo by Thinkstock

Local real estate agents, architects build awareness of climate change implicatio­ns

Area Realtors and architects are paying close attention to the effects of climate change on the built environment — and gaining new skills to help clients consider climate-related issues as they make real estate decisions. The Asheville chapter of the American Institute of Architects is hosting a conference, titled “Where Building Science Meets Climate Science,” at The Collider on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 2-3.

DIE WISE: Stephen Jenkinson, who has ministered to thousands of dying people, will speak on grief, death and life on Nov. 6. Photo courtesy of Said Osio

End-of-life activist Stephen Jenkinson to speak at Masonic Temple Nov. 6

Are you prepared to die wise? According to speaker, activist and death educator Stephen Jenkinson, it is our life’s work to learn how to do so. In collaboration with Third Messenger, an Asheville organization dedicated to facilitating conversation about death and dying, and in conjunction with the release of his latest book, Die Wise: A […]

BAT SNUGGLES: Regional wildlife experts work to show the public that bats can be crucial, not just creepy. Photo courtesy of N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission

Going batty: Get to know these misunderst­ood mammals

According to Katherine Caldwell, a biologist with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission in Asheville, it’s “almost incomprehensible,” the number of flying insects bats snap up on their nocturnal hunting expeditions. While their spooky reputation is slowly giving way to a more nuanced understanding of bats’ critical role in the ecosystem, we still have a lot to learn about these unusual mammals.

Photo of Pixie courtesy of Brother Wolf Animal Rescue

Fantastica­l fidos and felines: Howl-O-Ween pet costumes

Does your furry friend have their annual Halloween disguise? If not, don’t despair! Thanks to Asheville Pet Photography, Bone-A-Fide Pet Boutique, the Asheville Humane Society and Brother Wolf Animal Rescue, we have some last minute inspiration from some of the fanciest pets around. With just a little creativity (or perhaps a trip to your local pet store) your […]