Asheville

Western Carolina University has removed the name of former North Carolina Governor and U.S. Senator Clyde Hoey from its auditorium on campus.  

Madison Cawthorn's overwhelming win Tuesday in the runoff election for the Republican looks like an upset, as the 24-year-old finished second to Lynda Bennett in the March 3rd primary.  His win Tuesday by a 2-to-1 margin wasn't as unexpected as it looks, though the vote totals were.

Patrick Sebastian/Cawthorn Campaign / AP

A 24-year-old real estate investment CEO won Tuesday's Republican primary runoff for a western North Carolina congressional seat over President Donald Trump's endorsed candidate for the nomination.

Voters in western North Carolina are choosing the Republican nominee for a congressional seat held by Mark Meadows, before he became President Donald Trump's chief of staff.

In a narrow 4-3 party line vote Tuesday night, Buncombe County commissioners approved a resolution to remove two Confederate monuments in downtown Asheville.  The decision came one week after Asheville City council approved the same resolution unanimously.

Matt Bush/Blue Ridge Public Radio

On Tuesday evening the Buncombe County Board of Commissioners will vote on the future of two Confederate monuments in downtown Asheville: a Robert E. Lee memorial in Pack Square and a monument honoring fallen Confederate soldiers outside the Buncombe County Courthouse. 
 

By unanimous vote Tuesday evening, Asheville city council approved a resolution that calls for the removal of two Confederate monuments, while creating a group to decide the future of the Vance Monument in Pack Square.  The Buncombe County board of commissioners will also vote on the resolution at its next meeting this coming Monday.

Image of Asheville police car
Osajus / Flickr Creative Commons

The police chief in Asheville has apologized for the destruction of a medic station that was set up for people protesting police brutality and the death of George Floyd.

(Thursday 10:00 p.m.) - Thursday night’s vigil in Pack Square went off peacefully, with protesters leaving as organizers urged before the 8 p.m. curfew went into effect.  

Deuel News Co./UNC Libraries Commons

Coming of age in a decaying milltown is a common American recipe for brain drain. While growing up in Canton, Zeb Smathers anxiously watched his community struggle with the fallout from globalization. 

Christine Rucker-Putnam

Strikes and labor organizing are on the rise as essential workers grapple with safety concerns while on the job. Meatpacking plants, city sanitation and healthcare are some of the industries where workers are striking or organizing.

"I feel like over the course of a weekend the whole world changed"

Name: Katie Button, of Asheville, 37-years-old. Married with two children.
Job Status: Self-employed; Owner of two restaurants and an event space
Current revenue: $0
Savings: "I don't have anything. I am looking for some smart ways to have some funds available to us. Our lender/banker recommend we look into a home equity line. I'm lucky to own my own home and I feel fortunate to even have that option."
Entrepreneur: Button is a three-time finalist for the James Beard Award. In partnership with her parents and husband she owns popular Asheville restaurants Curate Tapas Bar and Button & Co. Bagels.

Frankie Leon

Earlier this week, Earth Fare suddenly announced Chapter 11 bankruptcy, surprising its 3,000 employees who are still awaiting the details of their severance packages. The closure was unexpected even for founder Roger Derrough, who sold the company in 2007.

City council members.
Max Cooper / Courtesy of the Asheville Blade

The people of Asheville successfully fought against an effort from the North Carolina state legislature to change how the city’s local elections were run.

The exterior of the New Belgium Brewing in Asheville, NC taken in May 2017.
Timothyjosephwood / Wikimedia

Employees approved the sale of one of the largest U.S. craft breweries to a subsidiary of Japanese beverage company Kirin in a vote that ended Tuesday, clearing the way for the sale to close by the end of the year.

Okra is a seed-to-stem plant, meaning that every part of the organism is edible.
Peter Taylor

Writing off okra as a slimy pod is a great injustice, according to Chris Smith. The garden writer and seed saver is an okra aficionado who asserts that while the vegetable may have a unique texture, it is a surprisingly versatile piece of produce.

A few bowls of flour sit out on a table.
Courtesy of Molly Dektar

In her debut novel “The Ash Family” (Simon & Schuster/ 2019) Durham native Molly Dektar draws on her personal fascination with cult psychology and devout sustainability.

Image of the Appalachian Mountains.
Flickr Creative Commons

Many Americans spend more time looking at screens than they spend outside — or even looking out a window. This increased disconnect between humans and nature comes at a time when scientists warn that the environment is especially vulnerable: the recent National Climate Estimate estimates that annual average temperatures in the U.S. are expected to rise by about 2.5°F in the next few decades. A new collection of nature writing from Appalachia aims to bring readers closer to nature through stories about both the splendor of the mountain region and clear examples of how humans are changing the planet.

the bandmates posing with their instruments outside
Courtesy of Sabra Music

The Asheville-based swing group Queen Bee and The Honeylovers made their entire debut album a tribute to their beloved hometown. “Asheville” came out in late April and features tunes about the historical characters and legends of the city in the style of a 1920s swing record.

This 2016 image from video shows the entrance to the Word of Faith Fellowship church in Spindale. A father and son who belong to the secretive evangelical church in North Carolina pleaded guilty Friday, May 25, 2018, to federal criminal charges.
Alex Sanz / Associated Press

A member of a secretive North Carolina church will enter a plea on a federal fraud charge as part of an investigation into an unemployment scheme benefiting businesses with ties to the congregation, according to court documents.

map of evictions in greensboro
Courtesy of Stephen Sills

There were an estimated 2,200 evictions in Buncombe County last year, according to reporting from The Asheville Citizen-Times. This statistic has many wondering: With Asheville’s booming economy and the historically low unemployment rate, why are its residents struggling to pay rent?

photo of Ben Phan holding a guitar
Ben Phan

Ben Phan remembers living in a van with his ex-girlfriend, bumming around the country and searching for a place to clean up his act and reinvent himself.

photo of asheville and the surrounding mountains at dusk
Michael Tracey/Public Domain

Why is Asheville not fighting a redistricting plan from the state legislature? Asheville’s local elections use an “at-large” system, which means that the six city council members and mayor are elected citywide. But last summer, state lawmakers created five districts for the Asheville City Council and delayed local elections for a year. 

Comedienne  Hilliary S. Begley at White Labs Kitchen making dumplings.
Courtesy of Jameykay Huffman

Asheville-based stand up comic Hilliary S. Begley had never acted professionally before landing a role in the hit Netflix movie “Dumplin.’” The film stars Jennifer Aniston, and is hailed as a feel-good, must-see movie of the season. It tells the story of a self-conscious teenage girl named Willowdean (Will), played by Danielle MacDonald, and her beauty-obsessed mother, played by Aniston, who is more concerned with running her beauty pageant than building a relationship with her daughter. 

There have been seven cases of mumps reported in North Carolina.
Flickr

North Carolina officials say a chickenpox outbreak at a private school has grown to the state's largest in more than two decades.

Courtesy Michelle Dorrance

Michelle Dorrance is revolutionizing tap dance, and the world is watching. Dorrance stomps and slides across the floor with movements that are experimental, loose, romantic and everything in between. She breaks the rules of what many expect tap dance to look like, and reinforces that tap dancing is first and foremost about making music.

The band Natural Born Leaders
Courtesy of Natural Born Leaders

The band Natural Born Leaders describes its sound as “the Fugees meets Black Sabbath.” The Asheville-based group is comprised of five members whose musical styles and influences range from metal and hard rock to hip-hop and folk.

DeWayne Barton in the Burton Street Peace Gardens
Angeli Wright / Asheville Citizen-Times

A highway expansion project in Asheville is set to destroy several homes in a historically black community for the third time. Parts of the Burton Street Neighborhood in West Asheville were demolished by state highway projects in the 1950s and 1960s. Now the proposed Interstate 26 connection project will go through the neighborhood again.

Matt Bush / BPR

The number of visitors at Dupont State Forest more than doubled this decade.  It’s just one of the many outdoor destinations that has helped form Asheville and Western North Carolina’s national profile.  Something else is now getting national attention – the region’s industry that builds the products those outdoor visitors use.

Asheville Fire Department

A ruling in a North Carolina firefighter's death could open the door for more benefits for their surviving families.

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