First Step Farms WNC is two farmsteads, both located on historic farmland in Candler. One site grows vegetable starts for small farms; the other grows flowers for weddings and school graduations. But the farms’ primary purpose goes beyond agriculture — the two sites are home to a substance abuse recovery program that uses farming to restore self-confidence in recovering addicts.
On May 30, Clean Energy for Western North Carolina, the Garden Club for America’s local French Broad chapter and Audubon North Carolina (NC) will be hosting their first Solar Saturday event to “kick off” this summer season.
When Donna Marie Todd’s husband died, she was 55. Bereavement counseling helped her begin to heal and understand her grief, but she found a lack of resources when she set out to rebuild her life. A professional storyteller, singer, writer, teaching artist and retreat leader from Black Mountain, she decided to create a one-day retreat for women — A Widow’s Tale.
Not all Asheville Beer Week events are strictly about the brew. On Memorial Day, Twin Leaf Brewery celebrated both physical fitness and beer with its Run Like a Girl event, which supported Girls on the Run.
Fresh Lunch brings a new daytime delivery service to downtown, Standard Pizza plans a Biltmore Village location and Asheville breweries sponsor the Beer City Cup soccer tournament. Plus food writer Jonathan Ammons talks about simple snacks at 5 Walnut Wine Bar.
City plans to improve infrastructure, expand public space, increase access and encourage private development in the River Arts District have triggered considerable controversy. Xpress reached out to the city, RAD business and property owners, and organizations involved in the now flourishing area’s revitalization to try to answer some key questions.
Foragers live along a spectrum, and I’m fairly moderate, somewhere on the tamer end. I tag along occasionally with those who hew to a wilder code of living and eat closer to the land. The other day I served as assistant to well-known local, Alan Muskat, “The Mushroom Man,” on a wild foods tour he had arranged for some out-of-towners.
Each week, Xpress highlights notable WNC crowdsourcing initiatives that may inspire readers to become new faces in the crowd. This week features Hall Fletcher Elementary school’s outdoor learning space, Roots + Wings School of Art and Design’s expansion onto a new campus and local band The Circus Mutts’ quest to raise funds for a new tour vehicle.
It started with a dare in the blizzard of ’93. Robert Ploeger’s father was having a hard time growing asparagus, and Robert said, “I’ll bet you I can grow it.” That winter, he and wife, Glenda Ploeger, co-owners of Cane Creek Asparagus & Co., started what would become their first three rows of asparagus in the greenhouse attached to their Fairview home.
The Lord’s Acre, a community of volunteers who grow and give away organic food, is hosting a fundraising festival the weekend after Memorial Day, but don’t think this event is just about growing food to give away.
Strive Not To Drive, a week of multimodal awareness events held throughout Asheville, held its first ever walking tour this past Tuesday, May 19, to showcase concerns and problems facing pedestrians, bikers, people with disabilities and motorists in downtown Asheville.
“Despite its name, Regional Recycling Solutions (the new solid-waste recycling facility proposed for West Asheville along Hominy Creek) is a big step backward for recycling here in Western North Carolina.”
What we often cull, throw away or compost can be the building blocks for new recipes, offering an infusion of flavor to many meals to come. And something deeper happens when we repurpose our scraps: a change of perspective.
With interest in wild edibles and native medicinals growing, the demand on these plants is quickly exceeding the supply — leading to over-harvesting, poaching and a risk of extinction. When browsing the stands at the farmers market or the shelves in an herbal shop, how can you know if the plants and products you’re purchasing are supporting sustainable, local growers or contributing to a growing problem?
When Claire Orenzow’s replacement heart valve failed eight years after it was surgically implanted, the symptoms were excruciating. But doctors at Mission Hospital were able to repair Orenzow’s heart with a new procedure called valve-in-valve replacement that offers significant benefits over traditional open-heart surgery, and Orenzow says she left the hospital a few days after the operation feeling like a new woman.
With three days of interactive athletic programming — from kayaking to running, cycling to yoga, and everything in between — plus additional outdoor leisure activities, this month’s Mountain Sports Festival caters to sports devotees and casual weekend entertainment-seekers alike.
Organizers say Mountain Sports Festival is a come-one-come-all event and that attitude is echoed in the multitude of nonsports attractions — in addition to extensive athletic programming — for participants and spectators of all backgrounds.
To many Western North Carolina residents, the region’s parks and recreational areas represent a chance to experience our state’s natural beauty and preserve its rich history. But what’s often overlooked is these attractions’ key role in bolstering local economies.