Clouds early & maybe a leftover shower
HI: 71 LOW: 52
DELAYED FOR 30 DAYS TO FIND WAYS TO CUT THE COST
After hearing from over a dozen citizens and taxpayers concerned with the high cost, among other things, of the commissioner-approved new $20 million law enforcement training center, county commissioners Monday night voted to delay approval of schematics and final plans for the facility and instructed the architect to find ways to cut the costs of it.
Commissioner Bill Lapsley made a motion to delay approval for 100 delays…then modified his motion to delay it all for 30 days.
Lapsley shared the concern of some of those who addressed the commissioners over the $20 million price tag. He also expressed concern over the lukewarm response from other area law enforcement agencies to the county’s recent reported attempt to “market” the new facility to help pay for it. And he pointed out there had been no offers for help paying for it on the state level from Representative McGrady and Senator Edwards.
There were also some concerns expressed Monday night about building that facility on the campus at Blue Ridge Community College---the facility will contain indoor firing ranges.
In the county’s budget for the current fiscal year, the commissioners raised the county’s property tax rate by five cents and committed a penny of that increase to pay for the law enforcement training center, paying for it at the rate of $1.28 million per year for the next 20 years.
The facility, as proposed and approved earlier by commissioners, would include a 49 thousand square foot L-shaped building with indoor firing ranges, classrooms, a gym, and a one thousand square foot back-up 911 center---to be built on one acre on the community college campus.
Previous attempts to find property for an outdoor firing range all failed to win the approval of the commissioners after complaints and opposition from nearby property owners.
By Larry Freeman
NO EXPLOSIVE DEVICE FOUND
Authorities confirmed Monday that there was no bomb in the suspicious package at the Hendersonville Walmart.
The Henderson County Sheriff's Department confirmed that deputies had responded to a "suspicious package" at the Hendersonville Walmart that city officials wanted them to check out.
Major Frank Stout says that the Explosive Ordinance Disposal (EOD) team used standard procedures to check out the suspicious package.
He tells said that there were no threats with the package, but deputies were assist with x-ray and safe distance protocols until they know for sure what it is.
Some stores nearby were briefly evacuated.
A NEW $2.6 MILLION SANCTUARY
A historic Fletcher congregation prepares for major renovation. Fletcher United Methodist Church, which was founded in 1854, will break ground on a $2.6 million new sanctuary.
The ceremony is scheduled for Sunday March 12 at 4 pm near the current sanctuary at 50 Library Road, next to the Fletcher Public Library.
“The church moved to this site in 1928, where we are fortunate to have room to grow,” says the Pastor, Rev. Dr. Stephen Ray. “The new sanctuary will double the capacity of the congregation, which has been growing steadily for the past decade.”
Fletcher United Methodist Church is also home of SonShine Preschool, which provides quality early childhood education to 80 students.
The new church project was designed by Asheville’s Arca Design, with Beverly-Grant of Asheville serving as general contractor.
NO ONE WAS INJURED TWO DAYS AGO
The Valley Hill Fire Department assistant chief confirms that a pilot made an emergency landing on the grounds of a Hendersonville Country Club Saturday morning.
After taking off from the Hendersonville Airport, the plane's motor seized up. The pilot took emergency precautions and landed at the country club safely....on the seventh fairway.
No one was harmed in the incident.
IN CUSTORY UNDER $1.1 MILLION SECURED BOND
17-year old Nathaniel Charles Smith aka "Kamo" of Fletcher turned himself in to law enforcement authorities in Brevard late Saturdy night, and is now in the Henderson County jail on serious felony charges in connection with a shooting last Tuesday night. Bond for Smith is $1,160,000 secured.
He is charged with shooting 18-year old Treveon McLure.
City police officers responded to a report of shots being fired about 4:43 last Tuesday morning on Holmes Street. but didn't find anything. While there, they got a call from Pardee Hospital that a gunshot victim, McClurew, was at the hospital.
McLure had been shot in the stomach Tuesday at 906 Holmes Street in Hendersonville.
Multiple law enforcement agencies were involved in the investigation.
Smith is charged with assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, with attempted first degree murder, and with discharging a weapon in occupied property resulting in serious injury
City council was presented with four proposals for the city-owned Grey’s Hosiery Mill property Thursday night.
Three of the four proposals were for a downtown hotel but with far fewer than the 100-130 rooms the city had suggested; the fourth proposal was for a commercial mixed use development on the old mill site.
Those plans will be reviewed and a recommendation on which one to accept will likely be made to city council at it's meeting in April.
Once final decisions are made, actual steps toward developing the deteriorating old site which the city has owned for the past 30 years could begin this summer.
City council committed to pursue a "downtown hotel" or something like that for the property on Grove Street month is ago.
FROM WHKP PRESIDENT AND GENERAL MANAGER ART COOLEY
An effort by one of the landowners on Four-Seasons Boulevard to spark a general CLEAN UP FOUR SEASONS BOULEVARD leading into Hendersonville has begun.
According to Art Cooley, owner of property at the former intersection of Cherry Street and Four-Seasons Boulevard, that stretch of some 200-feet, along Four Seasons Boulevard has been cleared of the growth of the past number of years and will get a treatment of fresh pine needles.
Some ten years ago, the City of Hendersonville closed the Cherry Street/Four Seasons Boulevard intersection which, according to former City Police Chief Donnie Parks said was ‘too dangerous’ and with too many accidents’ happening there, including a fatality. Cooley was unsuccessful in having the road reopened in a lawsuit which he entered against the city. During that lawsuit, the North Carolina Department of Transportation with local office under the direction of District Engineer Ed Green, proposed a traffic signal to be placed there with the City of Hendersonville bearing the cost. That offer was turned down by the City. Four-Seasons Boulevard (Highway 74 East) is under the jurisdiction of the NCDOT.
Cooley has been in touch with the City Council of Hendersonville over the past number of months encouraging them to stage a general clean-up of the entire area along Four Seasons Boulevard, now known as Martin Luther King Boulevard to present a better looking ‘city view’ coming into the City of Four Seasons. Manager John Connet tells Cooley that this issue was taken up just last week at the City’s annual ‘retreat’ and will soon be addressed by city council.
Cooley has owned the property since 1973 and has tried unsuccessfully over these years to gain approval from Hendersonville’s many different ‘city council’s’ and planning boards, to have the property between Cherry and Ashe Streets along Four-Seasons Boulevard re-zoned from residential to commercial. Cooley says that the city is holding landowners in that area hostage to lower sale prices on their property by keeping it zoned residential. Cooley contends the property offers the last remaining, high-visibility commercial opportunities from downtown Hendersonville to I-26, along Highway 64 East.
Many of the houses in that area are sub-standard and are being looked at by the city for condemnation and/or removal. A recent example of that is a house at the corner of Cherry and Jonas Street, across from Cooley’s property, which suffered fire damage a number of months ago and is now being removed by the property owner.
Thusly, two issues are on the table of city council regarding these properties. That of a general clean-up of the Four Seasons Boulevard area and the proposed re-zoning of the area from Cherry to Ashe Street along the boulevard, with the potential of re-opening Cherry Street to the boulevard.
THE 71ST RUNNING OF THE HISTORIC STEEPLECHASE
Tryon Riding & Hunt Club (TR&HC) and Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) are pleased to announce today that they have formed a partnership to manage and produce the 71st running of the Tryon Block House Races, the historic steeplechase of Tryon Riding & Hunt Club.
Under the newly-penned agreement, the Steeplechase will be held on April 15, 2017 - and in the future on the third Saturday in April. This year's race will have a total purse of $150,000 - the highest in the history of the event - and will move from the race's most recent venue, the Foothills Equestrian Nature Center (FENCE) where it has taken place since 1988, to a new one-mile track on 115 acres of land managed by TIEC, located at 6881 N.C. Highway 9 in Columbus, N.C.
"This marks a new and exciting time for the Tryon Block House Steeplechase," said Andrew Brannon, president of Tryon Riding & Hunt Club, which has been promoting equestrian sport since 1925. "Through this partnership, beginning this year the Block House will offer a competitive purse structure that will attract more horses and will improve the overall experience of race day for everyone. Most importantly, this partnership allows TR&HC to preserve and protect the 70-year tradition of this race for our community and ensures its viability for future generations. TR&HC is proud to be part of the Block House's return to prominence among the spring NSA sanctioned steeplechases."
"We are thrilled to be able to partner with TR&HC to produce the Tryon Block House Steeplechase," said Mark Bellissimo, managing partner of Tryon Equestrian Partners, whose properties include Tryon International Equestrian Center. "This collaboration brings together the rich history of TR&HC with our vision for the future of equestrian sport in this area."
To be sure, the Tryon Block House Steeplechase has evolved from its early days when it was held on farmland surrounding a pre-Revolutionary War trading post and fort known as the Block House. In 1947 when Carter Brown started the race, he established Tryon as an important destination for distance horse racing in the region. As the event has expanded, so have the community's participation, the size of the crowds, and the importance of having both a competitive purse and A-rated course to attract the highest level of owner, rider and trainer. "We are committed to making this event a can't-miss attraction for everyone - from owners to riders and from casual spectators to steeplechase enthusiasts," said Sharon Decker, Chief Operating Officer of the Tryon International Equestrian Center.
About the Tryon Riding and Hunt Club - Formed in 1925, the Tryon Riding and Hunt Club seeks to enhance and preserve the traditions of the Tryon area by conducting equestrian and philanthropic programs that benefit the entire community. Learn more at www.trhc1925.org.
About the Tryon International Equestrian Center -Tryon International Equestrian Center at Tryon Resort is one of the world's premier equestrian lifestyle and competition destinations. Open in 2014, the venue provides outstanding facilities for hunter/jumper, dressage, and eventing competitions and soon will accommodate all eight equestrian disciplines. Tryon International Equestrian Center is a spring, summer and fall haven for eastern and northeastern American equestrian competitors and enthusiasts, and a year-round destination for connoisseurs of diverse cuisine, lodging getaways and family entertainment. Learn more at www.tryon.com.
The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra (HSO) is pleased to announce pianist Christopher Tavernier as the winner of its 2017 Young Artist Competition.
Christopher, 16, of Hendersonville is a sophomore at Hendersonville High School. The son of Robert and Kimberly Tavernier, Christopher studies privately with Dr. Douglas Weeks and Dr. John Cobb. His winning performance piece was Piano Concerto No. 3 – Movement No. 1 Andante and Allegro by Sergei Prokofiev.
Now in its 22nd year, the annual Young Artist Competition “affords highly accomplished young musicians in Western North Carolina the opportunity to pursue excellence in competition,” said Philip A. (Pat) Tukey, HSO executive director. “This field of 11 exceptional young musicians all played their hearts out, providing an exciting competition and each should be immensely proud of their performances. Their talent and accomplishment is a glowing testament to their parents, teachers and their own hard work.”
The Young Artist Competition was held Feb. 19 at Freeburg Pianos, and the competition and awards were generously sponsored by LaBorde Eye Group, both of Hendersonville.
Studying piano since he was six years old, Christopher’s repertoire includes concertos by Bach, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Tchaikovsky, Prokofiev, and Rachmaninoff. His broad solo repertoire includes many works by his favorite composer, Franz Liszt.
Christopher most recently won the 2016 Asheville Symphony’s Concerto Competition, in addition to being a semifinalist from the select 15 entrants in the 2016 Midwest International Piano Competition. As its youngest entrant ever, Christopher placed second in the national Elizabeth Harper Vaughn Concerto Competition in Kingsport, Tenn., in 2014.
Christopher is also a dedicated chamber music player. Since 2014, he has performed with the Rutherford Chamber Consort, a professional chamber music ensemble headquartered in Western North Carolina.
“I am so honored to win the Hendersonville Symphony Young Artist Competition. This opportunity was really important to me because Hendersonville is my home town,” said Christopher reflecting on his achievement.
Myles McKnight, 16, a resident of Fletcher and a junior at North Henderson High School was awarded second place in the HSO competition. The son of Judy and Michael McKnight, Myles played Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto in E Minor - First Movement. He is a student of Jason Posnock.
Daphne Bickley, 15, of Lake Lure placed third. A senior at Rutherford Early College High School, Daphne is the daughter of Philip and Veda Bickley. A student of Jan Daugherty, Daphne performed Concerto for Viola and Orchestra, Movement 1 Andante Comodo by Sir William Walton.
As part of winning first place in the Young Artist Competition, Christopher will be a featured soloist with the HSO at their April 29 concert, “Nationalist Fervor.” He will play his winning performance piece. In addition, all three winners will perform at the annual HSO Youth Showcase recital, planned for Sunday, April 2, at 6 p.m. at Carolina Village.
The Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra, founded in 1971, exists to enrich the Hendersonville and Henderson County communities with live symphonic performances and music education opportunities for youth and adults.
For more information, visit hendersonvillesyphony.org, or call the HSO office at 828-697-5884.
CONSTRUCTION WILL BE DONE 9AM TO 4PM
PROJECT EXPECTED TO BE FINISHED BY MAY
Sidewalk Infill Project to Begin the end of January:
The City of Hendersonville has commenced construction of the US-64 (Four Seasons Boulevard) Sidewalk Infill Project. The project consists of construction of a sidewalk and other pedestrian facilities along Four Seasons Blvd from the Verizon Wireless store to Bojangles location. This project is funded completely through a grant from the Federal Transportation Authority in addition to an in-kind match from the City. The City has recently contracted with Patton Construction Group to complete this work, with City water and sewer crews also providing support. The project is anticipated to be completed by May 2017, although the schedule could fluctuate due to weather or other unforeseen issues.
Construction will start near Verizon and move east to the end of the project limits. We have and will continue to stress the importance of minimizing the impact of this project on the businesses along Four Seasons. The contractor will work hard to keep disruptions to a minimum and to maintain driveway and street access for businesses and property owners throughout the project.
Construction hours will be 9 am to 4 pm and will necessitate the temporary lane closures. Lane closures will be limited to the hours of construction and to portions of sidewalk under construction.