WNC News Roundup

Here’s what’s making headlines around WNC:

• Middle school student dies: A 14-year-old Hayesville Middle School student collapsed during a recent gym class and died, the Clay County Progress reports. Racheal Elizabeth Burrell had been diagnosed with catecholaminergic polymorphic ventricular tachycardia, a rare condition that can cause a deadly arrhythmia. From the story: “Racheal was your typical teen. Her favorite foods were maracroni and chesse and pizza. She was excited about taking driver’s education training this summer and she was looking forward to her 15th birthday.”

• Student death investigated: Boone police are investigating the recent death of freshman studio art major Raisa D. Sheikh, a death that police believe may have been caused by an alcohol overdose, The Appalachian student newspaper reports. The student’s father wants more information about what transpired, the newspaper reports.

• Barbecue festival accolades: The Blue Ridge Barbecue & Music Festival, will be listed among the best barbecue events in the country in the June issue of Martha Stewart Living magazine, the Hendersonville Times-News reports. The festival, held June 12-13 in Tryon, will feature three new events this year, including a farm-to-table dinner and motorcycle poker rally, according to the Tryon Daily Bulletin.

• More news tweets: The McDowell News is on Twitter, the newspaper reports. Go here to see the newspaper feed.

• Jackson commissioners pick library contractor: Jackson County commissioners chose Brantley Construction of Canton to build a new library complex on Courthouse Hill in Sylva, according to the Sylva Herald. The company’s $6 million bid was third lowest, according to the newspaper.

• Land trust celebrates 100th anniversary: The Highlands-Cashiers Land Trust is celebrating its 100th anniversary this year with a summer full of events, according to the Highlander newspaper. The trust has its roots in a group that banded together in 1909 to collect $500 and buy 54 acres at the top of Satulah Mountain to protect the view, the newspaper reports.

• Park planning: A new park being planned in Mills River could include a dog park, fishing piers, trails and soccer fields, the Mountain News reports.

• Medicinal plant uses: The News Record & Sentinel of Madison County offers advice on how to put together a first aid kit using local plants and essential oils. Example: for cuts and scrapes, “apply an anti-microbial healing salve based on comfrey, plantain, St. John’s wort, calendula, and yarrow.”

• Train time: The Tweetsie Railroad’s 2009-10 season, its 52nd season, has started up on a limited basis and will go to seven-day-a-week operation after Memorial Day, the Mountain Times reports. The train is a big tourist draw located between Boone and Blowing Rock.

• Kephart honored: Horace Kephart, the librarian, writer and outdoorsman instrumental in helping to create the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, was recently honored during Horace Kephart Day in Swain County, the Smoky Mountain Times reports. This year marks the 75 anniversary of the park’s creation, and the Kephart event was attended by about 50 people from across the country, including some of his descendants. The Smoky Mountain News, which is running a series on the park, also notes Kephart’s contribution: “Kephart propelled the idea of a national park like no one else could have. He cranked out magazine articles and newspaper columns across the nation. He penned personal letters to politicians and philanthropists. He joined the national park committee and wrote the text of brochures to promote the idea locally.”

• New creamery: The Fairview Town Crier reports that there’s a new creamery open in Fairview. Looking Glass Creamery, a micro-creamery, cranked up production in late February. It offers fresh Chevre and lightly aged Feta, which can be found at local retail outlets, according to the creamery’s Web site.

• More local beer: The Southern Highland Reader reports that the Beer Advocate says a new brewery is under construction in Bryson City. It’s the second commercial microbrewery west of Asheville after Heinzelmannchen in Sylva. The Nantahala Brewing Company is founded by award-winning home brewers Chris and Christina Collier, according to the Beer Advocate.




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One thought on “WNC News Roundup

  1. nuvue

    Interesting about Kephart, and glad to see his legacy is surviving.
    I think I found the remains of his cabin up on the little fork of Sugar creek many yrs back. Would like to know if it was his. ( The park service burned it down)

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