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COMMISSIONERS VOTE TO PROCEED WITH NEW $52 MILLION HENDERSONVILLE HIGH SCHOOL

COMMISSIONERS VOTE TO PROCEED WITH NEW $52 MILLION HENDERSONVILLE HIGH SCHOOL

In addition to budget issues, a main item on the agenda for commissioners Monday night was hearing the architect’s proposal for a new HendersonvileHigh School and moving forward with the project.

Architect Clark Nexsen is proposing a $52.58 million new school to be built on the nearby Boyd property at Five Points.

Originally scheduled for the consent agenda, the high school project was pulled from that agenda by Commissioner Mike Edney and opened it up for discussion. Edney made the motion to accept the architect’s and suggested that commissioners look at increasing the capacity of the new school.  That motion passed on a 4 to 1 vote, with Commissioner Grady Hawkins voting against it…saying the increased capacity is not needed, that the Hendersonville High School student body is actually predicted to decline in coming years.

Supporters of the current Erle Stillwell designed 90 year old historic main HendersonvilleHigh School building argued against the new school Monday night.  One pointed out that under state statutes, the whole thing should be the school board’s decision…not the commissioner’s.  Another argues the heavy traffic at Five Points would not make it a good location for a new campus.

But in the end, commissioners stood by their decision made in their last meeting to build the new 161,500 square foot, almost $53 million dollar new Hendersonville High School.

Even though the current main building…and the iconic old rock gymnasium…will not be a part of the new school, it’s still to be determined what role they’ll play in the community going forward.    

COUNTY MANAGER'S BUDGET PROPOSAL FOR FY 16-17:  NO PROPERTY TAX INCREASE TO FUND A $126 MILLION COUNTY BUDGET

COUNTY MANAGER'S BUDGET PROPOSAL FOR FY 16-17: NO PROPERTY TAX INCREASE TO FUND A $126 MILLION COUNTY BUDGET

If the Henderson County commissioners vote to approve the county manager's budget proposal for the 2016-17 fiscal year that starts July 1...there will be no property tax increase for county property taxpayers.

The budget, presented to commissioners Monday night, is a $126 million budget for Henderson County...and that's up some $2.3 million over the curent year's budget.

County Manager Steve Wyatt also Monday night encouraged approval of the quarter cent sales tax, pointing out that would produce about $2.5 million in revenue for Henderson County.

With no change in the property tax rate, Henderson County's rate will continue to be among the lowest in North Carolina...with only two coastal counties in the state having a lower property tax rate. 

Commissioners were also scheduled to get the Blue Ridge Community College budget proposal for the new fiscal year from President Molly Parkhill.

And commissioners were to review an architect's plans for a new Hendersonville High School, while supporters of the current 90 year old historic high school facility were scheduled to offer their suggestion for keeping the current facility in use.

 

 

CITY BAKERY TO OPEN NEW FACILITY IN FLETCHER

CITY BAKERY TO OPEN NEW FACILITY IN FLETCHER

 
City Bakery has started construction on a new production bakery in Fletcher, NC. In order to meet the needs and demands of its growing wholesale & retail business, City Bakery will move all of it’s bread production, presently baked in the 60 Biltmore Avenue location, to the new facility. Upon completion in early summer, the new bakery will allow for expansion into additional areas of Western North Carolina. City Bakery currently serves numerous local restaurants and grocery stores.
 
“The increased production space will allow us to broaden our presence in Ingles Markets and meet demand for our growing restaurant customers,” said CIty Bakery General Manager Brian Dennehy. “We are excited to grow our long standing relationship of providing fresh artisan breads and pastries to Asheville and the surrounding areas.”
 
    ● City Bakery currently serves wholesale bread customers in Asheville, Waynesville, Weaverville, Black Mountain, Arden, Oteen            and Candler. Target areas for expansion include Hendersonville, Mills RIver and Fletcher.
    ● The new bakery is a brand new 3,600 sq. ft. building located at 85 Fletcher Commercial Drive, Fletcher, NC 28732 and should             allow for City Bakery to triple its current production.
    ● For a complete up to date list of customers, click here: http://citybakery.net/breadschedule/
 
About City Bakery:
City Bakery is an independent, family owned company founded in 1999. We strive to produce high quality, fresh, artisan breads and pastries for our retail and wholesale customers. With two cafes in Asheville and one in Waynesville, we are proud to serve the local community.

A NEW MISSION FOR BLUE RIDGE HONOR AIR

A NEW MISSION FOR BLUE RIDGE HONOR AIR

Blue Ridge Honor Flight (formerly HonorAir) announced at a press conference earlier today its next mission to flyKorean War veterans and any veteran with a life-limiting illness to their memorial in the nation’s capitol. In addition, it was announced that the first flight of this next phase of Honor Flight will take place on September 24, 2016, ten years and one day after the first HonorAir flight to the World War II Memorial. The Blue Ridge Honor Flight project will be working with veterans from Buncombe, Henderson, Polk, and Transylvania counties.

HonorAir and the National Honor Flight programs have been responsible for flying over 150,000 veterans to our nation's capitol to experience their memorial. In the spring of 2011, the last Western North Carolina HonorAir flight returned home to AshevilleAirport.

“It’s always an honor to serve our veterans in this capacity,” stated HonorAir founder Jeff Miller. “And this phase of our mission is also exciting because so few Americans understand the Korean War. We hope our efforts will educate them and make it clear why these veterans deserve our thanks.”

Once again, Honor Flight is partnering with the Asheville Regional Airport to make these trips a reality. Airport Marking Director Tina Kinsey explained, “It’s an honor for us to help make the whole experience memorable and comfortable for our veterans. We look forward to working with Jeff and his board and volunteers to serve these special Americans.”

For more information about how to get involved in Blue Ridge Honor Flight, make a donation, or to get a veteran signed up for a flight, please visit the Blue Ridge Honor Flight website at blueridgehonorflight.com.

 "BLACKBERRY WINTER" LIKELY IN WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA LATER THIS WEEK

"BLACKBERRY WINTER" LIKELY IN WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA LATER THIS WEEK

BLACK BERRY WINTER BROUGHT 5 FEET OF SNOWFALL TO THE WLOS TV TOWER ON MOUNT PISGAH MAY 7 1992   

Mountain folks have known all about “blackberry winter” for generations.  It’s the last of the so-called “winters”…it follows azalea winter, locust winter, and dogwood winter…all those cold snaps that separate summer from winter, and scatter unseasonably chilly weather throughout the spring.  “Blackberry winter” is typically the last one before the warmth of late spring and early summer finally settles in. 

It’s called “blackberry winter” because is occurs when the blackberry bushes are blooming…in fields, on hillsides, all along roadsides and a number of berry growers are growing them professionally now. 

The trouble is, it’s not unusual for “blackberry winter” to bring a cold snap with frosty or freezing temperatures that can ruin the berry crop.  And “blackberry winter” is always a huge concern for HendersonCounty’s apple growers.  With the bloom pretty much off the trees and young apples on their way, “blackberry winter”…if it’s cold enough, and if the temperatures stay low enough, long enough…can be devastating to the county’s multi-million apple crop which represents a lion’s share of the local agricultural economy and a significant chuck of the county’s over-all economy. 

(As WHKP News has been reporting, some local apple growers (currently eight of them) now have their own individual weather stations to better anticipate and track weather conditions in their specific locations.)

Many of us remember May 5th through the 8th, 1992…that’s when about 5 feel of heavy, wet  snow fell on Mount Pisgah, as show in the photo of the WLOS TV tower on Mount Pisgah, May 7, 1992.

Ray’s Weather predicts that “blackberry winter” will likely occur late this week.  From the forecast published by Ray’s on the WHKP web site this Sunday morning:

     We’re watching for a large and unseasonably cold upper level low pressure system to develop over the central Appalachians and Mid-Atlantic states during Thursday and Friday. It will be getting progressively cooler, starting on Wednesday. Intermittent showers will be around through this entire period. By Thursday and Friday, it could be cold enough for the mountaintop locations (elevations near or above 5,000 feet in elevation) to see some snowflakes. Crazy, but not unheard of in early May! 

The National Weather Service currently predicts that Thursday night’s low will fall to 40 degrees in HendersonCounty.  And mountain farmers know that it’s not unusual for frost to occur at 38, especially in low-lying areas and on mountain tops. 

Most local growers wait until after Mother’s Day to plant tomato and pepper plants and if other crops and flowers are planted and up, they know to protect them when “blackberry winter” gets here.

The good news is…”blackberry winter” doesn’t last more than just a few days…and is typically the last of the “winters” for the spring season.  

By WHKP News Director Larry Freeman May 1, 2016 8am

 

LATEST POLL SHOWS NORTH CAROLINA VOTERS SUPPORT TRUMP, CLINTON, AND HB 2

LATEST POLL SHOWS NORTH CAROLINA VOTERS SUPPORT TRUMP, CLINTON, AND HB 2

 A new Civitas poll reveals how voters in NC currently feel about leading presidential and statewide candidates, including strong support for Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton, and the Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act (HB2).

Civitas President Francis De Luca said, “This is our first statewide poll of all likely voters in 2016 and this month’s results show that in the contest for president, while Republicans have not solidified behind a nominee, their voters have also not consolidated around candidates at the top or down ballot races in North Carolina. On the Democrat side, presumptive nominee Hillary Clinton is far less popular than her main rival and performs worse in head-to-head matchups against the two leading Republican candidates. In local North Carolina politics, voters still support the efforts of the governor and the legislature in passing House Bill 2, Public Facilities Privacy & Security Act, and oppose the actions the city of Charlotte took in passing its original ordinance.”

He continued, “It should go without saying, but it is only April, November is a lifetime away in political time, and the legislature just started its short session. As the turbulence in this election cycle continues, I expect to see more swings in voters’ attitudes.”

The poll surveyed 600 likely voters, 30 percent on cell phones. The margin of error was plus/minus 4 percent. The survey was taken April 23-25, 2016.

To view all questions and results, click here.

Cross tabs available here.

Civitas conducts the only regular live-caller voting in North Carolina, and we are the only organization offering independent, nonpartisan data on current opinion. In our more than a decade of polling we have provided vital insights on what North Carolina voters truly think of the leaders and issues facing the state and nation.

For more information, or to schedule an interview with Civitas President Francis De Luca, email Demi Dowdy at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call919.747.8059.

HENDERSONVILLE CITY COUNCIL MAY MEETING IS THURSDAY AT 5:45PM

HENDERSONVILLE CITY COUNCIL MAY MEETING IS THURSDAY AT 5:45PM

This Thursday night will be “awards night” when Hendersonville City Council meets at 5:45 in the Council Chambers in City Hall.  Council will be considering local city service awards…and historic preservation awards.

One big money item is on the agenda…awarding a $400 thousand contract to Steppe Construction Company for the Glenbrook Sanitation Sewer Project.

City Council will also be approving a special event permit for the upcoming Mad Mountain Mud Run on Saturady June 4th.

City Council will accept public comment at 5:45…the Council will deal with their agenda starting at 6pm.

HENDERONVILLE SYMPHONY TO HOLD OPEN AUDITIONS

HENDERONVILLE SYMPHONY TO HOLD OPEN AUDITIONS

The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra will hold open auditions on Saturday, June 4, 2016 for the positions of Associate Concertmaster and Horn 3. Musicians interested in auditioning for substitute positions with the orchestra in all sections are also welcome. Auditions are by appointment only. Interested candidates must submit an application, a one-page resume, and a deposit of $25 made payable to the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra. Checks will be refunded at the time of the audition. For audition application materials and further information, please

visit hendersonvillesymphony.org/auditions. Questions may be directed to Eric Scheider, Audition Coordinator, at 828-393-5222, or by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it." target="_blank" style="color: #1155cc;">eric.scheider@hendersonvillesymphony.org

 

THE HENDERSONVILLE SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA

The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra (HSO) is a 501© 3 organization that exists to enrich the Hendersonville community with live symphonic performances and instrumental music education for youth and adults.  They accomplish this mission through their programs and services offered.  Each year, the HSO offers five live symphonic performances during the regular season, under the artistic direction of Dr. Thomas Joiner, Conductor. 

 

In addition to live symphonic performances, the HSO serves as a music education leader in our community with pre-classical concert talks by our Maestro and guest artists, annual education concerts for 3rd and 6th grade schoolchildren, a Young Artist Competition, a Summer Strings Workshop, and an active scholarship program.   The Hendersonville Symphony Youth Orchestras is composed of three orchestras, serving advancing students from near-beginners through age 21.  The Hendersonville Symphony Children’s Choir is a non-auditioned ensemble providing quality vocal instruction for children ages 6-17 from across Western North Carolina. 

 

The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra is located at 228 6th Avenue East, between King and Grove Streets in the HomeTrust Bank Building. Office Administrator, Turner Rouse, is availableMonday through Friday, 9am to 5pm. 

 

DUPONT FOREST CLOSING SOME TRAILS IN MAY TO PROTECT FIREFLIES

DUPONT FOREST CLOSING SOME TRAILS IN MAY TO PROTECT FIREFLIES

DuPont State Recreational Forest will be closing several trails at the High Falls Access Area to prevent further impacts to blue ghost firefly populations. The closures will take place at night from mid-May through early June.
 
The temporary trail closures are in response to an overwhelming number of visitors during the 2015 blue ghost season, typically a three-week period in late spring. Forest officials observed a high level of habitat disturbance and disruption by the large nighttime crowds, which could have long-term impacts on local populations of fireflies. Forest officials ask that the public observe trail closure signs and stay out of closed areas.
 
“Our mission is to protect all forest resources, including the blue ghost habitat, so that everyone can continue to enjoy and benefit from these unique insects,” said Jason Guidry, forest supervisor. “The blue ghost fireflies are known to exist across the southern Appalachians. However, DuPont State Recreational Forest has become synonymous with the firefly through social media and news articles in recent years.”
Other public lands in neighboring counties are likely to offer nighttime viewing opportunities for the blue ghost firefly without the crowding, Guidry said.
The Friends of DuPont Forest supports the trail closures and has suspended its annual guided tours of the insects.
 
 “The FODF’s mission is to enhance the enjoyment of all that the forest has to offer while protecting its natural resources,” said Bev Parlier, the group’s president. “To support the N.C. Forest Service, the FODF has decided to temporarily suspend our guided tours of the blue ghost fireflies.”
 
Information about the trail closures can be found at forest kiosks, at the DuPont State Recreational Forest Visitor Center and on the forest’s website, http://ncforestservice.gov/Contacts/dsf.htm

PARK RIDGE HEALTH WANTS USED BIBLES FOR PRISON AND JAIL MINISTRY

PARK RIDGE HEALTH WANTS USED BIBLES FOR PRISON AND JAIL MINISTRY

Park Ridge Health is dedicated to providing compassionate care to the whole person: body, mind and spirit. That is why it is once again partnering with the Bible Toolbox Project to provide Bibles to Blue Ridge Prison and Jail Ministries.
 
Park Ridge Health will serve as a drop-off site for people wishing to donate used Bibles, in any condition.
Simply bring the used Bibles to the Park Ridge Health Main Campus. You will find drop boxes located at the front entrance to the hospital and outside the Park Ridge Health Café during the month of May.
 
“This partnership falls directly in line with the Park Ridge Health mission to Extend the Healing Ministry of Christ,” says Jimm Bunch, Park Ridge Health President and CEO. “Our associates are thrilled to invite our entire community to join us in this effort to give more people access to the hope and inspiration the Bible can offer.” 
 
Blue Ridge Prison and Jail Ministries provides Bibles for inmates in prisons or jails in Western North Carolina. Prison and Jail Chaplains often do not have budgets for Bibles. Many inmates have said having access to a Bible during their time in prison was their only source of peace and hope.
 
“We have seen our guests find comfort in reading the Bibles that are available to them here on our main campus,” says Chaplain Michael Lombardo, Park Ridge Health Director of Pastoral Services. “We are excited to be able to provide Bibles for others in our community who are in need of comfort.”
 
 
The Park Ridge Health Bible Toolbox Project runs from May 1-31, 2016.
 
Drop-off used Bibles in any condition
 
Park Ridge Health Main Campus:
⦁Main Hospital Entrance
⦁Outside Park Ridge Health Café