Shop local-ish

It’s impossible to walk in downtown Asheville without receiving the message loud and clear: This city supports its local businesses. Locally based brands like Spicewalla, Roots Hummus and Buchi Kombucha appear regularly on store shelves. Stickers promoting Go Local Asheville (formerly the Asheville Grown Business Alliance), a locally focused economic alliance, adorn window fronts. A […]

The people’s market: WNC flea markets offer culture, community and commoditie­s

Whether you’re hunting for a bargain or looking to make some extra cash, gathering with neighbors at a local flea market could be just the ticket. Flea market regulars say the connections that form between buyers and sellers are a unique aspect of the experience, and their value can equal or exceed the monetary rewards.

George Masa and the birth of Great Smoky Mountains National Park

“These efforts really are about protecting places for all Americans and for future generations,” notes Brent Martin of The Wilderness Society. The leaders of the national parks movement, he maintains, “all saw a much bigger picture, not only for all human beings, but for all living things.”

Conference homes in on WNC’s local economy

The Self-Help Credit Union, in conjunction with dozens of local sponsors, is hosting a conference on our local economy. Entitled “Bringing it Home: Building a Local Economy for Everyone,” the daylong conference will explore local-centric ways to grow the Western North Carolina economy. The event will be held at the Harvey L. Haynes Conference Center […]

Job statistics don’t tell the whole story for local economy

On Nov. 21, Gov. Pat McCrory’s office released a statement saying that all of the jobs North Carolina lost during the Great Recession — some 62,000 positions — had been gained back. Not long after, local unemployment numbers started coming in, showing that Asheville had the lowest unemployment numbers among the North Carolina metro areas at […]

Santa claws: lobster for the holidays

The holidays mean decadence. Fatty foods proliferate, bank accounts go negative and children risk becoming spoiled. In the spirit of overindulgence, Asheville can now add fresh Maine lobster to the holiday table. Especially since this well-armored delicacy is now available fresher and at a cheaper price than in area grocery stores.

F3 project aims to close the sustainabi­lity loop with canola

Advantage West held the “Fry Party” last week at a kitchen at Blue Ridge Food Ventures, located on AB-Tech’s Enka campus, to bring local attention to F3, an effort, according to project director Ron Townley, that pilots a new business model for the production of biodiesel from locally grown canola. The program, he says, is aimed at ultimately reducing Western North Carolina’s dependence on imported fuels by creating a partnership among area farmers, restaurants and biofuel producers.