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Jonathan Austin

Make it Merlefest

Money Combs photo

Art+Music

Brad Sherwood says he and Colin Mochrie have some idea what is going to happen when they take the stage for their popular comedy improv show, although what “some idea” means might be somewhat vague. Read more

Art+Music

It was odd in mid February to hear the weatherman on the local television say something like, “is this the last blast of winter for the season?” Read more

News

Early rising on cold winter mornings almost always kindles for me a momentary feeling of comfort, safety and well-being. What, specifically, keys that response? It is the memory from my childhood of feeling forced warm air on my bare feet. Read more

News

Backpack Explorer: On the Nature Trail is a take-along guide for children ages 4 and up, designed to jump start their curiosity about nature. Read more

Outdoors

The Channels Natural Area Preserve

Eric Middlemas photo

Our guide is Eric Middlemas of The Mid-Appalachian Highlands Club, a hiking and outdoor activity club in the Tri-Cities area that was founded in 1976 and is one of the oldest organized hiking clubs in the region. Read more

Outdoors

As the history of Asheville is written, residents and visitors alike would be remiss to overlook the impact of the man named Warren Haynes. Read more

Art+Music

For many in the mountains, that first car you got was a ticket to explore. In North Carolina, we took driver’s education class in high school when we were 15 years old. Read more

News

Maybe it’s just me. Do others raised in these mountains forget what trails they’ve hiked? Do you lose track of which parts of these beautiful ridges you’ve seen up close and personal? Read more

News

The Mountain Mile development, near the Teaster Lane and Wears Valley Road intersection, is the site of the proposed August Moon drive-in movie theater. Read more

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Carol and Jim Steiner say they understand that the idea of a jaunt on the Appalachian Trail can intimidate some would-be hikers. After all, the AT is about 2,181 miles long, known as the longest continuously marked footpath in the world. Read more

Outdoors

A friend’s Facebook meme last month caught my eye. It was the image of a boy playing in the mud, and the caption read: “They didn’t know their clothes were hand-me-downs, or that their home was not a mansion." Read more

News

It’s a name that often stands alone, bereft of more because it is complete in its singularity. Chihuly. From Venice to Jerusalem, the exhibitions of Seattle artist Dale Chihuly have attracted fans and critics alike. Read more

Art+Music

Jim Parham says he is like many people when it comes to finding and appreciating the variety of flowers that can be seen on hikes or simple strolls in the North Carolina mountains. Read more

Outdoors

Sometimes, it is worthwhile to try to make things as they once were. In a sense, that is the purpose of the Southern Appalachian Spruce Restoration Initiative at the Southern Highlands Reserve. Read more

Outdoors

My grandmother maintained a yard of flowers, mostly bulbs. She had a simple house with uneven floors and windows that were covered with ice on the inside in the coldest of winters. She had no money, she lived simply, but boy, did she have flowers. Read more

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Sunset

National Park Service

The Blue Ridge Parkway and Great Smoky Mountains National Park top lists for popularity, according to the National Park System. Read more

News

Bristol sings a new tune

Cameron Davidson photo • Virginia Tourism Corporation (Virginia.org)

Bristol is complex and effervescent, from the roar of NASCAR at Bristol Motor Speedway—the world’s eighth largest sports venue—to vivacious State Street, the downtown boulevard that anchors a resurgent arts and entertainment community. Read more

If you like music then you owe a debt of gratitude for events that occurred 90 years ago in Bristol, Tennessee. Read more