MUDDY WATER: An official meets with a hog farmer to review his animal waste management system. Photo courtesy of the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Local agencies wrestle with livestock impacts on water quality

Advocates for clean water in North Carolina often focus on the eastern part of the state, which hosts one of the world’s highest concentration of hogs. But French Broad Riverkeeper Hartwell Carson emphasizes that Western North Carolina and its smaller farms are not immune from the water quality issues related to animal agriculture.

HOLIDAZE: John Waters has been performing his Christmas-themed stage show for 12 years, and he knows a thing or two about handling the holidays. From ornaments with pictures of ugly relatives to a decorated electric chair, “I think that you just can take the traditional things about Christmas and have a little more fun with them,” he says.

Filmmaker John Waters talks Christmas, career, criminals and more

“I’ve been doing this Christmas show for 12 years,” Waters says. “Even when I made all the movies, I use to always do a show called This Filthy World or An Evening with John Waters. It began when I use to tour with the movies to introduce them. I’ve always had a stage show of some kind or other — I never gave up on Vaudeville.”

Give!Local geographic distrib of donors

Give!Local fundraisin­g tops $80,000 in final weeks

With just over two weeks left in this year’s giving campaign, Give!Local has surpassed both previous years’ final totals. Direct contributions now exceed $69,000; adding in $12,000 in matching grants, this year’s total giving now exceeds $80,000. The Give!Local campaign ends Dec. 31. So where are the donations coming from? Geographically, the east side of […]

POLITICAL CLIMATE CHANGE: Although total voter registration in Asheville grew by almost 19,000 individuals in the past decade
and a half, the number of registered Republicans decreased by nearly 3,000. While there was a spike in Democratic registration
around the time of Barack Obama’s first election, the recent growth in registration has been mostly from unaffiliated voters. Meanwhile,
for City Council elections, Democrats are showing up in disproportionately high numbers. Graphics by Able Allen with data
from the Buncombe County Board of Elections

How local organizers shifted Asheville politics to the left

Movers and shakers on progressive issues have had increasing success in Buncombe County politics since the turn of the century. Activists and organizers on the left have carved out a stronghold in Asheville where they keep power by setting the agenda for conversation according to some. Meanwhile a rise in disaffiliation with the traditional two parties leaves openings for candidates that don’t fit traditional molds in Asheville politics.