Shelley Hipps

Asheville Happenings and Things to do in April 2018

Asheville and Western NC has so much to offer especially when Spring arrives! There is so much to do and see, it is hard to choose where to begin. Below are just a few of the many exciting things going on in April 2018.

1st Friday Art Walk in the Downtown Asheville Arts District

The Downtown Asheville Art District (DAAD) invites you to visit the more than twenty galleries that contribute to Asheville's reputation as a vibrant arts community and "The Paris of the South."

Within a half-mile radius of Pack Square and the city's center, you'll find unparalleled diversity....from fine studio crafts, to glass, photography, folk art and contemporary painting, metalwork, textiles, jewelry and more by local, regional, national and international artists. 

Along the way, you'll discover three museums, the Southeast's only gallery focusing exclusively on illustration art, the city's largest artist gallery, contemporary glass sculpture from around the world, and traditional crafts by nationally-acclaimed artists, many of whom live in Western North Carolina. You'll discover why Asheville and the surrounding Blue Ridge Mountains have inspired artists for generations, and in the process, you'll make memories of your own.

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Glassworks Concert Series: Hot Glass, Live Music, Craft Beer

Lexington Glassworks serves as the backdrop for the ultimate local music, art, and beer experience. Join us the 1st Friday of each month from 5-8pm, April through December for a fun-filled evening of glassblowing, craft beer, and bluegrass.

This event is a part of the 1st Friday Art Walk in the Downtown Asheville Arts District and the Summer of Glass.

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Opening Day Celebration: Old Time Plowing and Folkways

Sat, Apr 7, 2018, 10:00 am - 4:00 pm

(General Admission $6)
Opening Day at the Cradle of Forestry celebrates Appalachian heritage during the days of the Biltmore Forest School as well as early springtime in Pisgah National Forest.

What to Do:

During our Opening Day celebration you can:

  • Get hands-on with old time horse plowing
  • Mingle with living history volunteers who bring the Blue Ridge mountain culture to life
  • Listen to some old-timey music
  • Enjoy the paved and wheelchair accessible trails, discovery center, film, scavenger hunts, and more

Crafters and Demonstrators represented in 2018: corn husk doll making, chair bottom weaving, tatting, quilting, mountain mandolin music, sweet potato carving, spring pole lathe, wood burning, and open hearth cooking.

Details about old time plowing:

David and Diane Burnette and their Percheron draft horses have been plowing our heritage vegetable garden for many years now, weather permitting. The Burnettes are skilled heritage agriculturalists who can be seen around western N.C. giving blacksmithing demonstrations, banjo playing, or making molasses. All ages will enjoy the chance to plow the old way with them!

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Arts Fest 2018 at UNCA  - April 5th - 7th, 2018

This year, Arts Fest will explore intersections through the arts.

Intersections can be seen as dividing or crossing two or more things, or bringing them together in a common location. The meanings we make with these intersections, as in life, are a matter of perspective and interpretation. Come and join us for this exploration through the arts, and participate in Arts Fest 2018!

Full schedule of events is now available.

Saturday, April 7

Festival on the Quad
12:00-5:00 PM
Events on UNCA’s Main Quad

Additional Festival on the Quad Activities Include:

  • Look out for musical flash mobs, led by Christine Boone’s Music Theory Club, and Matthew Richmond’s Percussion Ensembles
  • Arts & Crafts Vendors are expected to fill the main quad with their tents and tables
  • Interactive arts & crafts activities are offered by several arts vendors
  • UNITY & SOAR public art installations are open during specific hours for interaction
  • Anagama kiln firing and demonstrations

Food and beverages will be available at Argo Tea in Ramsey Library during Festival on the Quad

Arts Fest is made possible by the contributions for time, talent and finances from the following departments and programs of UNC Asheville: Art and Art History, Arts & Ideas, Dining Services, Dance, Education, English, International/Interdisciplinary Studies, Events and Conferences, Facilities Management, Marketing, Mass Communication, Music, New Media, Ramsey Library Staff, and Student Activities and Organizations.

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Glass & Metal Day at the Folk Art Center

April 7th, 2018  10:00 am - 4:00 pm


Check out some video footage from the 2016 Glass & Metal Day!


Gearing up for the season’s educational series of events - the Southern Highland Craft Guild is excited to showcase the elements of metal and glass on April 7. A range of techniques will be demonstrated in both of the media, as the artists each have their distinct touch and style.

From 10am to 4pm, these master craftspeople will be blacksmithing, glass blowing, piercing and soldering metals, knife making, bezeling, repoussé, copper etching, assembling stained glass, forging and many other artistic processes. Visitors have the opportunity to watch and learn more about two of the original craft media.

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Nantahala Outdoor Center's Outdoor Elements Festival

Date: April 13 - 14, 2018

Celebrate SPRING in the Smoky Mountains with a family-friendly event in the Nantahala Gorge. This event focuses on celebrating the Appalachian Trail thru-hikers and features our Flint Ridge 5k, along with a ton of free activities including the outdoor film premiere of The Great Alone, Riverside Yoga with Anna Levesque, live music with The Log Noggins, giveaways, meals, and sweet deals at the Outfitter's Store. This event is a must-add for your Spring calendar. 

Check out the Oboz One More Tree Event in the Outfitter's Store! Every customer that tries on Oboz hiking shoes gets to take home a sapling to plant or choose to have a tree planted elsewhere.

We will also have multiple reps and vendors on-site to discuss products and offer demos. Including Osprey, Vasque, Cascade Designs, Smartwool, Big Agnes (with repair truck on-site), Salomon, Nemo, Salewa, TNF, and KEEN.

Raffle items that benefit the ATC:
• 6 Pairs of Chacos 
• 5 ENO Doublenest Hammocks
• 1 Nemo Cosmo 25" sleeping pad
• 1 Nemo Astro 20" sleeping pad
• 1 Deuter ACT Trail Pack 24L
• 1 Pair of Leki Legacy Ultralite Trekking Poles
• 1 The North Face Basecamp Duffel
• 2 Pairs of Vasque shoes
• 1 Pair of Oboz boots
• 1 Osprey pack
• Smartwool socks

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Earth Day Kid’s Festival

Saturday April 21st 2018 | 10AM – 2PM

Salvage Station | 468 Riverside Dr. Asheville, NC

Free admission for all! 

RiverLink is excited to hold its fourth annual Earth Day Kids Festival! This event is an opportunity for families and people of all ages to come together for a day of environmental education, arts and crafts, performances, and celebration of the natural world. Entries from RiverLink’s annual Voices of the River: Art and Poetry contest will also be displayed at the festival and winners announced! This event will be held as part of WNC for the Planet’s “Earth Month.” This new collective of local environmental non-profits has come together to celebrate Earth Day with a month of environmental service opportunities and events in Asheville and surrounding communities. This event is FREE to the public! RiverLink is grateful to Salvage Station and Prestige Subaru for sponsoring this event!

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WNC for the Planet - April Events

WNC for the Planet is a collective made up of local environmental organizations that provides access to service, educational, and recreational opportunities throughout the month of April. We strive to unify our community to encourage and celebrate environmental stewardship for our planet and the region.

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Weaverville Art Safari

Spring Studio Tour

Sat – Sun | April 28-29, 10 – 5

Preview Party: Friday, April 27, 6 – 8pm

The Weaverville Art Safari is one of the original studio tours in the Asheville Area. It is a self guided free event that offers a unique look at the artist’s work in their working environment, featuring artists who specialize in handmade pottery, glass, photography, sculpture, jewelry, furniture, painting, drawing, fiber art, wood art and more.

The Preview Party provides an opportunity to see all of the artists work together the Friday evening before the tour. There is a silent auction and raffle/door prizes of artists work as well as beer, wine and snacks.

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Mother Earth News Fair

Western North Carolina Agricultural Center
1301 Fanning Bridge Rd. Fletcher, N.C. 28732

Saturday April 28th, 2018 : 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Sunday April 29th, 2018 : 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.

• More than 150 workshops from the leading authorities on organic gardening, food preservation, homesteading and livestock, green building, and natural health.
• Great deals from more than 200 regional and national exhibitors that feature ustainable products and services.
• Off-Stage Demos – With topics ranging from hands-on seed saving to building mud houses to heritage breed livestock, there is a lot to see!
• Inspirational keynotes, great food, and kids programming.

The Mother Earth News Fair is your passport to money-saving hacks, health-boosting remedies, and environmental strategies from leading experts and entrepreneurs around the country. In addition to presentations and hands-on workshops, you’ll encounter a vast marketplace abounding with innovative resources and products to enrich your life. Admission for children is free, and there are plenty of youth-oriented activities – including live animals!

With our growing emphasis on interactive programming, you can learn new skillsets live and on-site. More than ever before, the Mother Earth News Fair is truly an immersive experience where the magazine comes to life.

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Carolina Mountain Cheese Fest

Sunday, April 29, 2018, at Highland Brewing Company, Asheville NC

Join us, rain or shine, for our fourth annual Carolina Mountain Cheese Fest to benefit the WNC Cheese Trail.  Meet the makers and the milkers, explore the craft of cheesemaking, sample product, and buy lots of local cheese! 

We invite you to the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina on April 29th, 2018, when we'll be on the grounds of Highland Brewing Company to celebrate southern cheese and support the WNC Cheese Trail. This year, we're offering an early entrance ticket, "The Big Cheese", with access 12 pm to 5 pm as well as General Admission with access 1 pm to - 5 pm.  

We'll be updating our festival website regularly with information about the day's activities.  We'll have a wide variety of family-fun activities, vendors from across the region, demos, workshops, competitions, farm animals and more!

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    St Patrick's Day 2018 in Asheville and Western NC

    St. Patrick's Day is always fun, but in Asheville and Western NC it is a whole new level of entertainment! Check out all of the fun happening March 17th, 2018!

    Bike of the Irish


    Time to get your green clothes washed!

    What: Fun ride and hangout after
    When: March 17th, 2018  1:30 – 5:30 PM
    Where: Wedge Foundation

    1:30pm – Gather at Wedge and ready yourself for ride
    2:00pm – Ride leaves Wedge
    5:00pm – Ride concludes.

    Wedge hosts and all day St. Patrick’s Day celebration on 3/17. Besides, great beer, music, and food, Asheville Screen Printing will live screen print AoB Bike of Irish of Irish t-shirts.

    Follow our up to the minute details on Facebook.

    Bike of the Irish is AoB’s annual spring ride, featuring hundreds of green-bedecked riders and routes that showcase the best of Asheville’s bike infrastructure and greenways. All of AoB’s community rides are family friendly and free (although donations are appreciated).

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    Come join Hillman Beer for some good ol’ Irish Times and Tunes this St. Patty’s Day! Two musical acts will be performing starting at 3pm on Saturday, March 17th!

    3pm-5pm // Station 7 of Atlanta, Georgia // Guitar heavy alternative multi-genre band. Good Old Fashioned Galactic Jam Rock.

    5:30pm-7:30pm // Asheville Firefighters Pipes and Drums // The Asheville Firefighters Pipes & Drums was formed in 2010 to help honor our fallen brothers and sisters, instill pride and ownership in the Asheville Fire Department, and continue a long-standing fire service tradition.

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    Conundrum Speakeasy 2nd Annual St. Paddy's Ballyhoo!


    It's an Irish Ballyhoo! Come enjoy delicious cocktails, fine local ales, and plenty of St. Patrick's Day shenanigans.

    March 17th, 2018

    Starts at 4pm with DJ CHILLIGAN spinning the best St. Paddy's day party songs!

    6-10 LIVE MUSIC from Bardic Alchemy!!

    Join the fun and drinks until late evening!

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    Sham Rocked!


    Come join us at UpCountry Brewing for our first ever St. Patrick’s day party. We have a special ASSC pint glass, loads of beer, great food and a special LIVE Karaoke Band! That’s right, a live band to sing with! If you’ve been to any of our social events before you KNOW how much fun this one is going to be!

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    The Werks w/ The Snozzberries

    From: Pisgah Brewing

    Inside the Taproom
    Door:8:00 pm / Show: 9:00 pm
    Food Vendor: DOGS

    $15 in Advance, $18 Day of Show

    On their forthcoming LP Magic, melodic visionaries The Werks transcend their funk rock roots while never losing their identity. Poignant songwriting and engaging improvisation come together on a record that showcases their maturation as a multidimensional group of uniquely creative musicians. The Snozzberries are Asheville’s freakiest new supergroup, combining psychedelia, funk and fusion. $15 advance / $18 day of show: Doors 8pm / Show 9pm

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    St Patrick’s Day at Ben’s Tune Up

    Presented by Jameson Irish Whiskey | Starting at 2 p.m. | Free

    Jameson Irish Whiskey specials all day. Free music from DJ Oso Rey, a local songwriters/producer/DJ starting at 10 p.m.


    St. Patrick’s Day Celebration with Four Leaf Peat (traditional Irish band)

    The Grey Eagle | 185 Clingman Ave | 9 p.m. | $12

    An authentic celebration of Irish music + song


    St. Party’s Day at Banks Ave.

    Starting at 9 p.m. | Free

    Live music by DJ Kipper, photo booth + Shamrock costume contest.


    St. Patty’s Day Jam

    The Barrelhouse AVL | 1459 Merrimon

    Music by the paper crowns starting at 9 p.m., $5 banana-infused Jameson + $4 green beers


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      Asheville Is the Coolest City You've Never Been To




      Or maybe you have! But we still like the city a whole lot. Asheville native Charles Frazier, author of Cold Mountain and the Civil War epic Varina (April), tells us where to go.

      Take the Air

      There are many people who have been in Asheville, North Carolina, awhile who complain constantly about the tourists, but it was a tourist town in 1795. The location and altitude drew a lot of people from the lowland South in the summer for cooler temperatures. For me the draw will always be the mountains. If you drive just outside of Asheville, the Blue Ridge Parkway is views all along. Up near Craggy Gardens, you can see that layering of the ridgelines and mountain peaks. Bent Creek Experimental Forest and the adjoining North Carolina Arboretum occupy almost 6,000 acres of southern Appalachian cove and ridgeline. For many of us, this is our everyday hike, run, or mountain-bike route. The guy at the bike store where I go said, “Oh man, I bet that's where you go to think about your books.” No, Jason, that's where I go not to think about my books.

      Buy My Books

      There are a lot of writers in Asheville these days, and a lot of bookstores. For a quiet, bookish couple of hours, start downtown at The Captain's Bookshelf, which is into its fifth decade as an Asheville feature. Afterward, cross the street and walk down the main hallway of Grove Arcade to Battery Park Book Exchange, where you can pick up a cup of coffee or a glass of champagne and wander two floors of used books and reading nooks.

      The Cold Mountain author loves cold mountains–the Blue Ridge Mountains, to be exact.



      If you want real local beer—not the stuff that looks craft but is owned by a giant international corporation—try Wedge Brewing Company. They do a whole lot of small-batch things. The granddaddy of Asheville beer is Highland Brewing Company, also indie but with a big mountain-view deck. (Even though I wrote Cold Mountain, I make zero money off their popular Cold Mountain Winter Ale. Not even from the leather pint-glass koozies.)

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        LOCAL Kids Participate in the 2018 Fed Cup in Asheville NC!


        We're delighted that the children of two of our agents earned a spot along with 17 other amazing young people to be the ball boys and ball girls that will be working the courts at the Fed Cup matches this weekend featuring the USA vs. the Netherlands! These young men and women survived two rounds of cuts with over forty kids from the area trying out. They are junior high and high school students from over a dozen schools in Buncombe, Henderson, and Haywood Counties. These young people have been training hard for 5 weeks to represent their community and the USA in this international event. The training for this has been intense to say the least, these kids are incredible!

        Left to Right.  
        Front Row: Drake Gallian, Dominique Grant, Julia Reed, Kirina Shah, Andrew Tashie, Henry Kelso
        Second Row: Carli Stiles, Kennedi Green ( Daughter of our own Kishaun Green, REALTOR!), Rylan Tuten ( Son of our own Chris Tuten, REALTOR!), Hamrick Perry, Ella Lewis, Caleb Owen
        Third Row: Lola Lee, Addi Moyers, Sid Shah, Emilee Mosso, McCullough Perry, Xander Barber, Jay Wright.



        It's finally Fed Cup week in Asheville. 

        The women's international tennis tournament gets underway Feb. 10-11 at the U.S. Cellular Center in downtown Asheville. The weekend's tennis action pits the Fed Cup defending-champion U.S. team, featuring all-time tennis greats Serena and Venus Williams, against the Netherlands. 

        The United States Tennis Association announced Asheville as a Fed Cup venue in November, just days after the U.S. team defeated Belarus to win its first title since 2000. Tickets went on sale in November and event sold out late last month, shortly after the Williams sisters signed on to participate.

        It is expected to generate more than $3.5 million in economic impact for the city, the USTA said last week. 

        Here are a few things to know before this week's tennis action:

        What is the Fed Cup?

        The Fed Cup dubs itself the "The World Cup of Tennis." Formerly known as The Federation Cup, it is the largest annual women's international team sports competition, similar to the Davis Cup for men's tennis. 

        The Fed Cup, the Davis Cup and the mixed-team Hopman Cup are organized by the London-based International Tennis Federation, which governs the sport.

        This weekend's action between the defending-champion U.S. team and the Netherlands kicks off the nearly yearlong Fed Cup tournament as part of World Group I. Besides Asheville, other World Group I play this weekend includes Belarus and Germany in Minsk, Belarus; Czech Republic and Switzerland in Prague in the Czech Republic; and Belgium and France in La Roche-sur-Yon, France.

        Nobody has more Fed Cup titles than the U.S. The team collectively has won 18 titles including the most recent in 2017, under Captain Kathy Rinaldi. It was the U.S.'s first title in the tournament since 2000.

        Behind the U.S. is the Czech Republic with 10 Fed Cup titles. The country was a three-time defending Fed Cup champion before being knocked out by the U.S. last year in the semifinals in Tampa....

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        Kennedi Green was just chosen Friday Feb. 9th, 2018 to do the first round draw for the Fed Cup in Asheville, NC!! She was so excited to meet everyone and even had the chance for Serena Williams to sign her shoes that she will be wearing during the match!!



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          When Art Is A Force But Also A Saving Grace



          Adding even more color to Depot Street, the mural is splashed across Pink Dog Creative’s stacked shipping containers. A brightly dressed woman leans gently forward as she works. She stitches a quilt that bears the blues and greens of Earth, seen from space.

          The mural is hard to miss but most people don’t know the artist behind it, even though Irene “Jenny” Pickens has spent her life tirelessly making art in and for Asheville, including designing T-shirts for the Goombay festival. Now, the high-visibility public artwork is putting her in the spotlight. Pickens strikes up conversations with viewers of Zolas Embrace (peaceful earth) both on site and online. They voice their support, or ask the meaning behind the artwork.

          This connection between artist and viewer, as well as between art-makers, drives her. In her earliest memories — when she was no older than three — she is alone, drawing on walls and paper, using old soda- and shoeboxes to make dollhouses, and making doll clothes from old fabric. In those years, when her parents went to prison and her grandmother took custody of her and her siblings, she says her “escape was to make things.” Throughout her life, art has brought her peace, and she strongly believes that it can do the same thing for anyone.

          The artist’s emotionally expressive dolls, a popular item at biannual event The Big Crafty, are made using recycled materials.

          Pickens makes art where she is and shares it with her neighbors. This includes drawing behind the counter at Greens Mini Mart, and making quilts for babies and the elderly with homeless Ashevilleans. Though she may not be able to save the world like the figure in her mural, she’s adamant about using art to make others’ lives better.

          Now that the mural is completed, Pickens is excited to turn back to acrylics. Her large-format portraits, which she’s done for years, usually depict women and often feature family members. One is her niece, Candace Pickens, who was killed in 2016 in a domestic-violence case that received national attention. (Candace’s toddler son Zachaeus survived the close-range shooting.)

          Pickens says she hopes to spend more time painting male subjects, and also wants to explore other media, including a series of small dolls she recently began. Inspired by her niece, “they’re made with used, recycled, and new materials,” she says. “It’s a way to remember love ones who have passed by using some of their clothing.”

          She says she challenges herself constantly — “if someone tells me I can’t do something, I’m going to see if I can” — and she’s beginning to envision a craft book for other artists and “anyone, really, who has an idea of things they want to do, but not a place to put it or do it,” she explains. People like her younger self...

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            6 Misconceptions Millennials Have About Home Buying


            By: Grace Barron-Martinez, REALTOR®

            Buying your first home can seem intimidating. Many Millennials are under the false assumption that it isn't even possible for them to become homeowners. Sure, our generation hasn't been handed the easiest deck when it comes to the economy, but home ownership is well within reach for many. In this post, we'll look at 6 common reasons Millennials believe they can't buy. As a Millennial home owner, I tackle each misconception and show you home ownership is possible for you!

            6. “I don’t know the first thing about buying a house!”

            One of the biggest failures of our education system in the country is the lack of basic personal financial education we receive in school. I graduated high school and college having received no formal education on anything from credit scores, to the process of buying a home, or even how to write a check. Fortunately, I am extremely passionate about home ownership for my generation and can help you with every step of the way. The process may seem daunting at first, but with the right education and support, you too can learn this important life skill.


            5. “Home ownership will tie me down!”

            Our generation loves to travel and explore the world. Many of us hate the idea of being tied down and stuck in one location. Home ownership doesn’t have to mean you stop your dreams of exploration! In fact, it can help along the way. You can always rent out your home or a room or two while you’re out fulfilling your need for wanderlust. If I were to rent my home out now, I could actually have money in my pocket to spend on travel because my mortgage payment is lower than what I could charge short-term renters.


            4. “My credit sucks! / I don't even know my credit score!”

            Having good credit definitely helps when you’re buying your first place. Maybe you had medical bills that you fell behind on or a credit card you opened years ago that you neglected to pay and have avoided thinking about. You may even have no credit at all, as was the case with my husband when we first got married. The first step to addressing your credit is to know where you stand. I recommend downloading the CreditKarma app or getting your free monthly score from your bank, which many are offering these days. You can also run a completely free credit report once per year through Once you know your score, you can begin to work on improving it. I am happy to help with guiding you on how to build and improve your credit!


            3. “Renting is cheaper.”

            This is just downright false. Asheville has high rents and low vacancy. A mortgage on a $175,000 can easily be less than $1,000 per month*. The average 2 bedroom unit in Asheville is averaging $1,180 per month, which is the highest rent in the entire state! Worse yet, rent prices continue to rise. Every month you give rent to your landlord, you’re helping them build equity on your dime!

            *Many factors go into determining mortgage payments. I can connect you with a mortgage professional to find out your true cost of monthly payments and how much you can afford.


            2. “I’m not married.”

            Millennials are saying “no” to marriage in record numbers. If we do decide to tie the knot, we are doing so later in life. Recent studies suggest that as many as 25% of Millennials will never marry at all. Maybe you haven’t found that special someone just yet, or the idea of marriage just isn’t for you! Either way, your relationship status doesn’t need to impact your financial future. Having two incomes certainly helps on a home mortgage application, but there are no rules that say you have to be married to someone to buy a house with them. I have several friends who have purchased homes with their long-time partners. You can even buy a house with a close friend! Obviously, there are lots of things to consider regarding your relationship when you make such a big decision. Single people can certainly buy houses too. I was single when I purchased my first home. It’s just a matter of finding a home that fits within your budget!


            1. “I can’t afford a down payment!”

            It’s hard enough paying the bills to get by in a town where wages are way out of line with living expenses. Saving $10,000 or more is a daunting task that causes many Millennials to assume home ownership is out of reach. The truth is, the proper education about available financing is what has been out of reach for our generation. In 2018, there are many creative lending options available with down payments from 3.5% all the way down to nothing! With options like FHA and USDA loans along with down payment assistance programs, Millennials have plenty of options to choose from to make buying a home a reality. Closing costs are negotiable and can sometimes even be financed by the seller. Buying a home could mean putting out less cash than first and last month’s rents and security deposits that you’re already spending to move into a rental!


            Now that you know YOU CAN buy your first home, why not reach out to learn more about how you can prepare yourself for that next big step?

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            Grace Barron-Martinez, REALTOR®

            Town and Mountain Realty



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              TONIGHT December 21st, 2017 - Asheville Community FUNdraiser in Support of 5 Local Non-profits!

              Join us and share the love as we celebrate the season by supporting local non-profits that concentrate on the homeless population and those in crisis throughout our Asheville and WNC community. Your gift will go a long way to help members of our community have a place to call HOME.

              We have chosen 5 local non-profits to work with this year. We feel these five make efforts to help those homeless and in crisis in our community: Homeward Bound of WNC, Helpmate, Caring for Children, Eliada, Asheville Buncombe Community Christian Ministry's Transformation Village

              We have set our goal to raise $20,000 and we will be matching all donations up to $10,000!

              We are thrilled to have kids activities, 2 wonderful LOCAL bands, a DJ, photo booth, drinks, incredible silent auction & raffle + more!

              *Your donation is your admission, you choose what you want to give!

              Once inside, enjoy free buffet style dinner and $3 beer and cider!

              100% of ALL proceeds go to the 5 LOCAL non-profit organizations!


              5pm - 7pm - Kids' activities including photos with Smokey Mountain Santa & Mrs. Claus, games, face painting with Asheville face and body art and more!

              Photo booth (ShutterBooth Asheville) for fun photo opportunities - goof off with your family & friends!

              7pm - Food will be served & Live Music Begins!

              (Amazing LOCAL food donated from all over Asheville & Western NC - PLUS Catering By Corey, LLC & MORE!)

              7pm - 8pm - Swing Step

              8pm - 9pm - DJ Mad Sci


              Silent Auction & Raffle with incredible finds from all over Asheville & WNC!

              9pm - 10pm - Leeda Lyric Jones



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                Asheville and WNC Thanksgiving Guide 2017


                The Thanksgiving Holiday Weekend (November 23-26, 2017) in Asheville is a feast of fun. Here are our Top 10 things to do. Of course, eating is number one! Also see our Top Holiday Outings. For Christmas Day Restaurants open in Asheville, see our Christmas Guide.

                Thanksgiving Day Asheville Restaurants

                While many restaurants are closed, there are still many great local choices for a brunch, lunch or dinner. Click on the names to go to their web sites.

                • Biltmore Estate Restaurants. Requires estate admission ticket or 12-month pass to dine.
                  • Deerpark 11 AM-5 PM: Extravagant Thanksgiving buffet, $56/adult, $19/youth 10-16, reservations required (and books up fast). 
                  • Bistro (at Winery) 11:30 AM-9 PM: Gourmet three-course prix fixe menu, $55/person. 
                  • Stable Café (by House) 11 AM-4 PM: Menu with most popular lunch items, plus a number of holiday offerings. Phone: 828-225-6370. 
                  • Cedric’s Tavern (Antler Village) 11 AM-9 PM: Regular lunch and dinner menus, plus three-course menu $40/adult. Phone: 828-225-1320. 
                • Omni Grove Park Inn Restaurants (Reserve online or call 1-800-438-5800)
                  • Blue Ridge Dining Room: 12-8 PM Buffet feast with views of the mountains, Adults $62, children 2-12 $25
                  • EDISON, craft ales + kitchen: 11 AM–11 PM with special menu, $26/entree, $10/dessert
                  • Grand Ballroom Buffet: 11 AM-6:45 PM, Phenomenal Buffet, Adults $62, children 2-12 $25
                  • Vue 1913: 5-10 PM, Gourmet Thanksgiving 3-course menu, $70/person
                  • Read more about Grove Park Inn and the Gingerbread House Competition Display
                • Grand Bohemian Hotel: (Biltmore Village) Two choices: The Red Stag Grill presents an elegant, four-course dinner, 11:30 AM-9 PM, $75adult. The grand Kessler Ballroom has an elegant buffet, reservations times between 12-2:30 PM, $70/adult.
                • Roux: (South Asheville) Traditional Thanksgiving buffet including delicious selections of roasted all-natural NC turkey with orange-cranberry relish, baked ham with maple-bourbon glaze. 1–7 PM. Adults $38/person, $17/child 12 and under. Located in the Hilton Hotel Biltmore Park. Reservations at 828-209-2715.
                • DoubleTree Hotel's Thanksgiving Buffet features seasonal classics with an elegant twist. Biltmore Village. 1:30-6 PM. Adults $42; Children $16 (12 & under). Reservations at 828-274-1800
                • The Blackbird: Modern Southern 3-course menu at $65/adult, $15/children under 12, 11 AM-10 PM, downtown.
                • The Esmeralda Inn in Chimney Rock, buffet with seatings at 11:30, 2 and 4:30 PM. Reservations required. $40/adults, $20/children.
                • Storm Rhum Bar & Bistro, downtown, 3-course prix fixe menu $45/person with choice of heritage breed turkey, beef, pork or fish. They serve from 2-8 PM and the bar will be open until midnight.
                • Isa’s Bistro, 12-5 PM, 3-course prix fixe menu $55, downtown.
                • Strada Italiano, 11 AM-8 PM, Italian family recipes a la carte, reservations and walk-ins. Social Lounge next door open 3 PM-Midnight, downtown
                • Carmels, a la carte Southern inspired menu, Grove Arcade downtown, 12 Noon-8 PM
                • Pack's Tavern, two Thanksgiving Buffets with turkey, ham, trimmings and plenty of beer choices on Pack Square Park downtown, 11 AM-8 PM. $34.99/adults, $17.99/children under 12. Good option for large groups. Reservations and walk-ins.
                • Mountain Magnolia Inn in Hot Springs, Thanksgiving Harvest Dinner served from 11 AM-5:30 PM inside historic inn. 3-Course Prix Fixe $60, 5-Course Prix Fixe $70, Children Under 12 with 3-Course Prix Fixe $25; Under 6 free.
                • Season's at Highland Lake Inn in Flat Rock, big Thanksgiving Buffet 10:30 AM-7 PM, $50 Adults, $25 Child, 5 and under free. Live music. Local's favorite. Reservations required.
                • Tryon International Equestrian Center, buffet at Legends Grill, 11 AM-4 PM, $29.95/person. Call 828-863-1000 for reservations.
                • Cornerstone (102 Tunnel Road, Asheville) is our favorite diner in town. They will have several specials with choice of sides. 7:30 AM-9 PM. No reservations accepted. 
                • Old Europe Pastries downtown at 13 Broadway is open from 7 AM-4 PM on Thanksgiving.

                Asheville Outlets: The 70-store Asheville Outlets Center will be open on Thanksgiving Day from 6 PM until 2 AM, Friday & Saturday 8-9 and Sunday 11-6. Free pics with Santa. Read more.

                Pick your Christmas Tree: Go to a "choose and cut" Tree Farm to pick the perfect one for your home on Friday, Saturday or Sunday. All are closed on Thanksgiving Day. Many farms offer hayrides and other activities. See our Asheville Christmas Tree Farms Guide.

                Downtown Asheville: Most all downtown stores are closed on Thanksgiving. But there's plenty of holiday shopping on Friday and Saturday to find those special gifts. Browse through more than 200 shops, 30 art galleries and a dozen antique stores. Free parking on streets and city parking decks on Thanksgiving Day and Friday. See our Downtown Asheville Guide.

                More Shopping: Biltmore Village is home to more than 40 shops in historic cottages and buildings. Asheville is a mecca for artists, so this is the place to find one-of-a-kind gifts. Head to the Folk Art Center and the River Arts District. See our Gallery Guide. Also see our Antique Shopping Guide. Most all local stores are closed on Thanksgiving Day.

                Small Towns: If you prefer the quaint small towns and friendly "Mayberry" Main Streets, explore our cool small towns throughout our mountains.

                Get Outdoors: #optoutside! Take a late fall hike and enjoy views through with leafless trees, cool temperatures, and few fellow hikers. See our hiking guide for top picks. All trails and waterfalls in the National Forests and Parks are open every day.

                • Green Friday at Adventure Center of Asheville (near downtown): Ages 4+ zip at KidZip or climb at Treetops Park. Ages 10+ ride Zipline Canopy Tours as well as advanced challenges in the Treetops Park. 50% of all revenue donated for environmental causes in WNC.
                • Some ski resorts will open. Cataloochee opened Nov 20th and Beech Mtn opens Nov 24th.
                • Ranger Guided Hike, Friday at 10 AM to Mingus Creek Cemetery in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, 4.2 miles roundtrip hike. Meet in the Mingus Mill parking area, less than a mile north of the Oconaluftee Visitor Center, along Newfound Gap Road. For more information, call the Oconaluftee Visitor Center at 828-497-1904.

                National Parks: Both Blue Ridge Parkway and Great Smoky Mountains National Park are open on Thanksgiving Day, weather permitting. The Oconaluftee Visitor Center in the Great Smokies is open on Thanksgiving Day.

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                  Asheville Volunteer Day with Eliada Home

                  Check out our photo and video gallery from our day of volunteer fun! ( Make sure to watch the hilarious slow motion videos as our agents go head to head in a bouncy horse race! )

                  Tuesday October 17th, 2017 was a beautiful day at Eliada Home! Our agents and staff had a great time volunteering at the corn maze where they drove kids on tractor rides, loaded the corn cannons with ears of corn, helped kids safely enjoy the giant tube slides and jumping pillow, and made sure the corn maze was litter-free. Eliada home does amazing things for the kids in our community and we love supporting such a great organization.

                  Make sure to join us on Dec. 21st, 2017 at the Orange Peel in Asheville NC for our 6th Annual Home for the Holidays FUNdraiser where we will be raising funds for Eliada Home and four other non-profit organizations!

                  Visit our website for more details:


                  We are WNC’s ONLY non-profit Corn Maze with 100% of proceeds benefiting the children at Eliada!  Not only does your ticket purchase come with access to family-friendly fun, memories, and adventures but it directly aids in the growth and success of Eliada and our kids!

                  Dates and Times

                  Eliada’s 2017 Annual Corn Maze will be open from September 30th through October 31st. Stop by and join in the festivities!

                  • Monday – Friday: 9am-3pm
                  • Saturday: 10am- 8pm
                  • Sunday: 10am-6pm
                  • Check Eliada’s Facebook Page for updates on inclement weather

                  Buy your TICKETS HERE!

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                    Tips for Cleaning Up After a Big Storm

                    Cleaning Up Your Yard After the Big Storm

                    Huge storms can wreck havoc on your beautiful yard. The months spent getting your lawn into perfect shape can be destroyed by just a few minutes of a terrible storm.

                    Fortunately, there are plenty of steps you can take to clean up your yard after the storm has died down. Here are easy ways to assess your yard in the days following an extreme weather event.

                    What can you do in the aftermath of a big storm? Plenty. Check out these Top 5 Tips for Post-Hurricane Yard Clean Up. Easy ways to assess your yard in the days following an extreme weather event.

                    Tip No. 1. Check your trees, lawn and shrubs for storm damage. Note fallen trees, limbs and branches in a notebook so that you can easily report these items to your tree surgeon, arborist, landscape specialist or insurance carrier, as needed. Pay particular attention to which trees or shrubs were adversely affected. It may be that you’ll need to rethink the placement of these trees and shrubs in the future, or enhance your wind barriers and drainage systems in the future. In my yard, we’re fortunate to have several outbuildings and storm fencing which shield our trees from damaging wind, rain and hail. But, we recently consulted a Master Gardener from our County to provide advice on falling limbs that may be the combined result of summer drought and hurricane force winds.

                    Tip No. 2. Check your drainage systems, curbs, gutters, and storm drains for water, leaves, mud and other lawn debris. These systems can sustain damage as well during a big storm. Ask yourself several questions. Where does water tend to pool or puddle? Where do leaves collect? What’s working and what’s not? Follow up with flood and drainage specialists as needed. Or, get the shovel ready to redirect water flow or clear drains as warranted. The experts at HGTV provide easy DIY tips for installing a French Drain in your yard. But, keep in mind, no system is foolproof and most require regular maintenance, particularly after a storm.

                    Storm 2







                    Tip No. 3. Remove sticks, stones, and leaves from lawn and garden. The days following a storm are excellent times to remove all debris that’s collected or fallen during the course of a tropical storm or hurricane. Clearing your yard will help the sun and wind dry your water clogged lawn and garden areas a little faster than if you let the elements take care of this debris on their own. Remember to put what you can in your compost pile, separating out oak leaves and other material that may not decompose. The rest can be disposed of, keeping in mind that your local authorities may have specific regulations on proper handling of this material.

                    Tip No. 4. Steer clear of damaged trees. These can pose dangerous conditions prior to and during removal. Call a tree specialist to figure out your options for your damaged trees. Some are salvageable with a little trimming. Others will need to be removed by the experts. Trees down in common areas? Across yards? For community as well as private tree advice and assistance, contact a certified arborist or Master Gardener at your local Extension office. These experts can help you develop a plan to address your damaged trees, usually at no cost to you. Extension services can also provide important tips on chain saw safety, crucial advice if you choose to clear these specimens yourself. In the meantime, best to keep you and your family a distance away from these post-storm hazards.


                    Tip No. 5. Stay away from standing water. If there is significant flooding or water collection in your yard, this can pose significant dangers to you and your family. It may be that a storm drain has dislodged or overflowed. Or, a stream has risen substantially higher than its banks. In any event, it will be important for you to alert family members and neighbors of this standing water, and to report this water hazard to your local authorities. It may be that you’ll need to wait for water to subside. Or, in the case of creeks, streams and other waterways, authorities may need to check things out. The Centers for Disease Control provide an excellent fact sheet on what to do in the case of standing water. At a minimum, CDC cautions homeowners to wash their hands after contact with flooding or standing water. In the meantime, best to keep you and your family a safe distance away from these post-storm hazards.


                    Smart, Safe Storm Cleanup Tips

                    Getting your home back into shape after big weather may require more than a broom and a mop. Here's a collection of our best pro advice for managing the aftermath


                    By the editors of


                    Dealing with the Aftermath

                    For many people, when a terrible storm hits, it's the aftermath that is the worst. Debris, flood waters, power outages, broken tree limbs, shattered glass, piles of snow— these are all dangerous risks once a hurricane, tornado, or nor'easter makes its way through a town or community.

                    The editors of This Old House have compiled our best and safest advice for how to deal with the cleanup after a storm. Follow along to see how you can save your house from more harm—and keep yourself and your family safe as you do it.


                    Stop a Flood

                    With a heavy storm comes heavy rains, and inevitably flooding. If waters come into your home, be careful about getting it out. Turn off the power—but only if the water hasn't reached as high as any electrical outlets in the room where the main breaker lives. Otherwise you could be wading into an electrified pond.


                    Dry Out Your House

                    Once the storm subsides, hiring a professional service might be your best bet for a thorough cleanup, because they will know how to eradicate water in places you didn't even realize it had seeped.


                    Stave Off Mold

                    Even if you think you've gotten all of your goods dried out and cleaned up, dirty and contaminated floodwaters may have already laid the groundwork for mold—not just on the walls, but inside them and in floors and furniture.

                    Clean Up Damaged Trees

                    With high winds and heavy rains or snows come downed trees, one of the most dangerous and damaging outcomes of a powerful storm.

                    First figure out how bad the situation is by following the advice in Assessing Tree Damage. If you find you'll need to remove a tree, call in a certified arborist to do any major removal; taking down trees is a scary job that can cause terrible injury if not done right.


                    Fix Broken Glass

                    High winds and flying debris might have shattered a pane or two. Follow TOH general contractor Tom Silva's advice for repairing broken glass, whether it's on a door, in a window, or only accessible from inside.

                    Clear Leaves

                    Those on the peripheries of a terrible storm may not have had downed trees or flooded basements, but they're likely to have found themselves with a house and yard covered in leaves and twigs.

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                    How to Help Hurricane Irma Victims

                    As Hurricane Irma roars over the Florida Keys after causing destruction in the Caribbean, here is a guide to how you can help the people it affects.

                    First, some general guidelines: The Center for International Disaster Information, a part of the United States Agency for International Development, offers useful tips on giving in the wake of disasters. Sending money is almost always the most efficient way to help, it emphasizes.

                    Read More


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