News briefs: Strive Beyond promotes alternative transportation, Asheville hosts home ownership fair

Strive Beyond logo
BUST A MOVE: Strive Beyond, a project of the Land of Sky Regional Council, seeks to get area residents thinking about transportation beyond the personal automobile. Graphic courtesy of Land of Sky

Strive Beyond hosts driving reduction events

Formerly Strive Not To Drive, the Land of Sky Regional Council’s Strive Beyond program is hosting a number of events throughout May that encourage Western North Carolina residents to bike, walk, bus or carpool instead of using personal vehicles. Organizers say that these options are more environmentally friendly, less dangerous and better at efficiently moving people than are single-person automobiles.

Throughout May, residents can log the driving miles they replace through other modes of transportation at, with all who submit an entry registered to win a $500 voucher from the WNC Bicycle Dealers Association. The month ends with the Strive Beyond Summit at Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. in Mills River on Friday, May 31, from 3-5 p.m., where Transportation for America Director Beth Osborne will present a regional vision for shared and active transport.

Other events taking place throughout the month include:

  • Ride of Silence memorial bike ride, 6:45 p.m., Wednesday, May 15, at Pack Square Park, 70 Court Plaza.
  • Stroll Outta Work walking history tour, noon-1 p.m., Friday, May 17, at Pack Memorial Library, 67 Haywood St.
  • Aging and Living Beyond the Car talk, 11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m., Friday, May 24, at Land of Sky Regional Council, 339 New Leicester Highway, Suite 140.

For more information and to register for these events, visit

Health Equity Coalition holds forum on Dogwood Health Trust

The biggest nonprofit in WNC — the $1.5 billion Dogwood Health Trust, formed from the sale of Mission Health to Nashville-based HCA Healthcare — will be the subject of discussion at the Health Equity Coalition’s Cutting Edge Philanthropy Forum on Friday, May 24. From 8:45 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at UNC Asheville’s Reuter Center, philanthropic leaders will explore how the funding could bring about “transformational” results for the region.

Keynote speakers include Brenda Solorzano, executive director of the Headwaters Foundation of Montana, and Kelly Ryan, president and CEO of Incourage in central Wisconsin. For more information and to register, visit

City of Asheville invites residents to Home Ownership Fair

On Saturday, May 18, 10 a.m.-noon, Asheville officials will put on a Home Ownership Fair at the Stephens-Lee Recreation Center, 30 George Washington Carver Ave. Attendees can learn about the city’s recently approved Down Payment Assistance Program, as well as receive individualized support from bankers, real estate agents and credit experts.

The city’s program offers no-interest loans of up to $40,000 for residents making less than 80% of area median income for down payments on single-family residences within Asheville city limits. An additional $400,000 is available for full-time Asheville or Asheville City Schools employees making up to 120% AMI. More information is available at

Area schools make staff moves

  • Buncombe County Schools hired Kimberly Fisher as human resources director, Brian Propst as assistant director of human resources and Taylor Baldwin as career and technical education director.
  • Asheville City Schools named Sarah Banks as interim finance director. Previously the system’s assistant finance director, she replaces Charlotte Sullivan, who retired in March.
  • Mars Hill University promoted Rick Baker, previously the school’s sports information director and assistant athletic director, to director of athletics. He will assume the position on June 1.

Watch and learn

  • On May 13, the Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site in Flat Rock opened a new exhibit titled Dressing for the Occasion: Mid-Century Sandburg as Celebrity and Family Man. The display, open daily through Thursday, Oct. 31, features rarely seen personal items from the writer and his family. More information is available at
  • The Asheville Museum of Science holds “A Conversation About Hemp” as part of its Science Pub series. Panelists including Franny’s Farm owner Frances Tacy, Luxe Botanics owner Nathan Taylor and Growers Hemp owner Brad Todd will discuss the plant’s potential at 6 p.m. on Friday, May 17, at The Collider, 1 Haywood St., Suite 401.
  • The Fine Arts Theatre hosts the Asheville premier of Kifaru, a documentary about the northern white rhinoceros, at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday, May 16. Filmmakers David Hambridge and Andrew Brown will be present at both the screening and an 8 p.m. afterparty at 27 Biltmore Ave., Loft 201. Visit for tickets and more information.

Thanks for reading through to the end…

We share your inclination to get the whole story. For the past 25 years, Xpress has been committed to in-depth, balanced reporting about the greater Asheville area. We want everyone to have access to our stories. That’s a big part of why we've never charged for the paper or put up a paywall.

We’re pretty sure that you know journalism faces big challenges these days. Advertising no longer pays the whole cost. Media outlets around the country are asking their readers to chip in. Xpress needs help, too. We hope you’ll consider signing up to be a member of Xpress. For as little as $5 a month — the cost of a craft beer or kombucha — you can help keep local journalism strong. It only takes a moment.

About Daniel Walton
Daniel Walton is the former news editor of Mountain Xpress. His work has also appeared in Sierra, The Guardian, and Civil Eats, among other national and regional publications. Follow me @DanielWWalton

Before you comment

The comments section is here to provide a platform for civil dialogue on the issues we face together as a local community. Xpress is committed to offering this platform for all voices, but when the tone of the discussion gets nasty or strays off topic, we believe many people choose not to participate. Xpress editors are determined to moderate comments to ensure a constructive interchange is maintained. All comments judged not to be in keeping with the spirit of civil discourse will be removed and repeat violators will be banned. See here for our terms of service. Thank you for being part of this effort to promote respectful discussion.

Leave a Reply

To leave a reply you may Login with your Mountain Xpress account, connect socially or enter your name and e-mail. Your e-mail address will not be published. All fields are required.