WNC News Roundup

Here’s a look at what’s making the headlines around Western North Carolina:

Library and courthouse funding: Folks in Jackson County are working hard to raise $1.6 million to pay to furnish the new Jackson County library and the renovated Sylva in courthouse, reports the Smoky Mountain News. Fundraisers have $800,000 in commitments, according to the newspaper.

Korean War vets memorialized: The Hendersonville Times-News notes that the sacrifices of veterans from across the state will be honored at a state Korean War Memorial begin built near Charlotte. Local veterans are helping raise money for the memorial, which will recognize the 789 North Carolinians killed or listed as missing in action during the war.

Controlling big developments: A group of Haywood County residents wants county commissioners to adopt a new law that would assess the impacts of large developments, according to the Smoky Mountain News. The request of the Haywood Community Alliance marks the first time a group of citizens has formally asked commissioners to take action on development, the newspaper reports.

Top students honored: The Cherokee County school board voted 4-3 to reinstate a policy to name county high school valedictorians at the end of the first semester of the student’s senior year, the Cherokee Scout reports.

Punkinhead the deer: Punkinhead the pet deer can be seen hanging out in Franklin, according to the Macon News. “He loves being petted and shows affection by rubbing his antlers on people,” the newspaper reports.

Shopping center in, trailer park out: Residents of the Blue Ridge Mobile Home Park in McDowell County are being forced out their homes by the construction of a new shopping center promising 400 jobs, reports the McDowell News. The deadline for residents to be out is Aug. 21

Horse killed: The Tryon Daily Bulletin reports that the Polk County Sheriff’s Office is investigating a “horse murder” in Green Creek. The horse, a 10-year-old black gelding, was shot three times, according to the newspaper.

Hispanics moving out: Four local Hispanic families have voluntarily moved back to Mexico because of the troubled U.S. economy, according to the Highlander newspaper. “Like many others nationwide, Latinos are having trouble finding jobs. Service and construction industries have been especially hard-hit by the recession, and these provided many jobs for immigrants in the area,” the newspaper reports.

House donated to Habitat: The owner of a 2,200-square-foot home in the Iron Duff community of Haywood County donated the house to Haywood Habitat for Humanity, and organization officials have been working on getting the home moved 10 miles to Maggie Valley, according to the Haywood County News.

Black Mountain real estate market: The Black Mountain real estate market is holding up relatively well, according to the Black Mountain News. “Surveying several real estate brokers in town, ERA Pinnacle Properties, Coldwell Banker Kasey and Associates, Mountain Vista Properties, and Greybeard Realty, the brokers report that Black Mountain was one of the last markets to be hit by the housing slowdown, and the belief across the board is that Black Mountain will be one of the first markets nationally to recover,” the newspaper reports.

Marshall Mardi Gras: The town of Marshall will celebrate Fat Tuesday downtown with decorations and a parade, according to the Madison County News-Record & Sentinel.

Brevard controversy simmers: The very public fight between the Brevard city manager and the city’s police chief continues, reports the Transylvania Times, with City Manager Joe Albright saying that he’s moving forward with a search to replace Chief Dennis Wilde.

Park anniversary boost: Supporters and administrators of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park are hoping that celebrations this year of the park’s 75th anniversary will boost Western North Carolina’s economy, reports the Smoky Mountain Times. With singer Dolly Parton as the anniversary ambassador and a series of events planned through the year, officials are hoping for an uptick in park visitation, which was down last year compared to 2007.

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