September 2015

September 2015
Distance: 12.5 miles round-trip, Difficulty: Strenuous

A Morganton couple aims to spread monuments to the country’s founding documents far and wide

Touring Asheville with Jude Law, a local writer ponders the weight of Thomas Wolfe

At Hart Square in Catawba County, a man with a passion for historic structures keeps the past alive

Asheville’s In Blue leather goods marries two local favorites: music and making

A grand Asheville fixer-upper becomes a forever home

Savor the season with estate wines that pair perfectly with fall fare

Hendersonville restaurant Dandelion serves up sustenance and job skills for those at risk of domestic violence

The latest brewing trend brings foraged ingredients to hyper-local beers

Fill up on apple cider doughnuts fresh out of Hendersonville

The scoop on WNC’s latest dining destinations

Hop the border to Virginia’s Primland for a luxury experience that reaches for the stars

Asheville artist Matt Tommey’s sculptural baskets reflect nature’s wild creativity

The Polk County Film Initiative launches a new festival

A new book by Steve Inskeep illuminates the personalities behind a tragedy for the Cherokee

Burke County is bursting with options for your next adventure

Get to know local history through new exhibits at area heritage museums

Appalachian State University launches an exchange program in Havana

A Madison County program brings advanced literacy skills to rural girls

A new photography exhibit in Sparta tackles stereotypes

UNC Asheville students document life 100 years ago, when the United States was on the brink of war

Throughout Western North Carolina sit dozens of public schools abandoned by time, consolidation, and changing demographics. In their heyday, they were community epicenters and veritable second homes for thousands of students. Today, some are boarded up, while others await imminent demolition and replacement by new state-of-the-art facilities. But there are also a handful of old schoolhouses tucked away in various corners of the mountains that have found new purpose as community centers, concert venues, historical beacons, and artists’ studios. Here’s a look at the past and present of eight of them.

Hugging the banks of the North Toe River, surrounded by blue-tinged mountains, the rural Mitchell County town of Spruce Pine holds a rich history, one with tales of trains and commerce, a hoard of minerals, and a nationally recognized theater. After falling in love with the community and learning of its heritage, Boone-based events planner Elizabeth Hempfling decided to pay homage. “I wanted to do something that portrayed love, but wanted it to be unique and to mean something,” she says. Hempfling staged a photo project that offers period recreations of Spruce Pine’s past, from the early 1900s to the 1950s, as well as snapshots of the thriving community today. In all, some 30 local residents pooled resources and time to stage, style, and snap pictures over four days. The result is a nostalgic portrayal of the town’s story, told with passion and reverence.