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Asheville-area outdoors calendar

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10/20/2011 - Asheville-area outdoors calendar
by Asheville Citizen Times

AN amazing comprehensive list of Fall clubs, races, things to do, outdoor events and organizations, all here in the mountains of Western North Carolina!  Links, contact information and more - something for everyone!!

 

RUNNING - RACES

ROCK THE QUARRY: Four-mile trail challenge starts at 9 a.m. Saturday, at Grove Stone Quarry in Black Mountain. $25 at www.active.com.

BLACK MOUNTAIN RUNNING CO. 5K: Free 5K as part of celebration of new Black Mountain Running Co. running shop, 106 W. State St. 5K starts at 9 a.m. Saturday, at Black Mountain Primary School Greenway. For more information, Call 669-7186 or visit www.blackmountainrunning.com.

POWER OF PINK: Fifth annual 20-mile relay for five-women teams, Pink 4-mile Run/walk for everyone and Bubble Gum Fun Run/Walk. Fundraiser for breast cancer detection programs in Haywood County. Starts at 8 a.m. Oct. 29 at MedWest Health and Fitness Center, Clyde. $200 per relay team by Oct. 26, $25 for Pink 4-Miler by Oct. 21, $10 for Fun Run. For more information, call 400-5868 or visit www.medwesthealth.org.

POINT LOOKOUT LIGHTNING 5K: Starts at 10 a.m. Oct. 29 on Point Lookout Trail near Old Fort. at the Old Fort Picnic Ground off Mill Creek Road. $25. www.lightning5k.leetiming.com/info.html.

SUPERHERO 5K: Starts at 4:30 p.m. Nov. 12 at Asheville Brewing Co., 77 Coxe Ave. Dress as your favorite superhero. $23 at www.active.com. Visit www.ashevillepizza.com.

TAILS AND TRAILS 5K: For people and their dogs, Nov. 19 at the Buncombe County Sports Park. Human-only 5K starts at 8:30 a.m. and Run/Walk 5K for dogs and their humans starts at 10 a.m. Benefit for Asheville Humane Society and the Buncombe County Sports Park. $20 per race before Nov. 9, $25 after, or $30 for both races before Nov. 9, $35 after. For more information, call 250-4260.

EARTH FARE TURKEY TROT 5K: Jus' Running hosts race starting at 9 a.m. Thanksgiving Day at Carrier Park, Amboy Road. $25 at www.setupevents.com through Nov. 21. Visit www.jusrunning.com.

HOT CHOCOLATE 10K and KIDS HILL CLIMB: Registration now open for Isaac Dickson Elementary School race, starting at 9 a.m. Jan. 21 at the school, 125 Hill St., Asheville. Adult 10K $27.50, youth 10K (17 and younger) $20, Hill Climb (12 and younger) $12, Marshmallow Dash (6 and younger) $12. www.hotchocolate10k.com.

TSALI FROST FOOT: Registration open for the 2012 Tsali Frosty Foot Fest 50K (31 miles), 30K (18 miles) and 8K (5 miles) Jan. 7 in the Tsali Recreation Area of Graham County on www.active.com. 50K is $50 until Dec. 7, $65 until Jan. 5 online, 30K is $35/$45, 8K is $25/$30. Visit www.tsalifrostyfoot.com.

RUNNING CLUBS

ASHEVILLE TRACK CLUB: Promotes and support the running communities of Western North Carolina by providing information, education, training, social and sporting events for competitive and non-competitive runners. Visit www.ashevilletrackclub.org.

FOUR SEASONS RUNNING CLUB: Official running club of Hendersonville and Henderson County. For more information, call 388-3200 or e-mail fourseasonsrunningclub@gmail.com.

GIRLS ON THE RUN of WESTERN NORTH CAROLINA: Registration now open for the program that teaches girls in third-eighth grade to develop self-respect and healthy lifestyles and prepares them to participate in a 5K run at the end of the 12-week, 24-lesson program. Call Audrey McElwain at 713-4290, visit www.gotrwnc.org or e-mail at audrey.mcelwain@girlsontherun.org.

JUS' RUNNING: Groups meet for various levels of road and trail runs and track workouts at the Jus' Running store, 523 Merrimon Ave., Asheville. Call 252-7867, e-mail jusrun@bellsouth.net or visit www.jusrunning.com.

DIAMOND BRAND RUNNING GROUPS: Meets at 6 p.m. every Wednesday. Runs are 3-6 miles at an 8-10 minute pace. All running levels welcome. Contact mmcbride@diamondbrand.com.

FOOTRX RUN: Meets at 8 a.m. Saturdays at the south exit of Hendersonville Road and the Blue Ridge Parkway. All ages and abilities welcome. Call Chuck Martin at 687-3476.

SWAIN COUNTY TRAIL RUNNERS: Long-run group meets 8 a.m. Saturdays at the Deep Creek Trailhead parking area in Bryson City. All runs are on trails in the Smokies or Tsali Recreation Area. All distances, paces, ages welcome. Call 399-0989, 488-6769 or e-mail wdtreern@yahoo.com.

MULTISPORT/ SWIMMING/ ON THE WATER

ASHEVILLE MASTERS SWIMMING: Organized workouts, 5:45-7:15 a.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday, at the Asheville School, and at 7:30-9 a.m. Saturdays at Warren Wilson College. Coached workouts 5:45-7:15 a.m. Tuesday and Thursday at WWC. Competitive, fitness and triathlon swimmers welcome for training, stroke work and socializing. More at www.ashevillemasters.com.

SWIM CLINICS: All clinics are at Warren Wilson College pool in Swannanoa. Call 771-3005.

HIKING/WALKING

ASHEVILLE AMBLERS WALKING CLUB: Club features free, monthly 5K or 10K (6.2-mile) noncompetitive walks in Asheville, Black Mountain and Hendersonville. Associated with American Volkssport Association. Visit www.amblers.homestead.com or call 687-2777.

ASHEVILLE HIKING MEET-UP GROUP: Social and hiking club made up of all ages and professions. Hikes take place Saturdays and Sundays. Free. Visit www.meetup.com/ashevillehiking.

ASHEVILLE YMCA WALKING CLUB: Meets noon Tuesdays at the YMCA on Woodfin Street. Open to everyone. Call 210-9622.

BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY: The most-visited unit of the National Park Service, stretching 469 miles from Shenandoah National Park in Virginia to the Great Smoky Mountains in Cherokee. Call 298-0398 for road and weather conditions or visit www.nps.gov/blri.

CAROLINA MOUNTAIN CLUB: More than 175 hikes a year. Call Stuart English at 883-2447 or visit www.carolinamtnclub.org for schedule of hikes. Hikes are free. Nonmembers should call ahead.

DIAMOND BRAND OUTDOORS: Gary Eblen leads various group walks throughout the year on the trails and in local parks. Call 209-1538.

GIRLS-ONLY HIKE CLUB: Women-only hike the third Saturday of each month. Registration is required. Call 209-1503 or e-mail Kate Shirey at kshirey@diamondbrand.com.

NANTAHALA HIKING CLUB: A hiking/trail maintenance club based in the Franklin-Highlands area. For a schedule of guided hikes, call Kay Coriell at 369-6820 or visit www.nantahalahikingclub.org.

PISGAH HIKERS: Five different hiking groups meet Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in Brevard. Hikes range 3-12 miles. Visit http://pisgahhikers.squarespace.com.

SOUTHERN APPALACHIANS HIGHLANDS CONSERVANCY: Nonprofit working to conserve the clean water, unique plant and animal habitat, local farmland and recreational treasures of the Southern Appalachian Mountains. Visit www.appalachian.org.

SWANNANOA VALLEY MUSEUM: Hosts various hikes, camps and community events throughout the year. At 223 W. State St., Black Mountain. Call 669-9566 for information and to register for events. Programs and activities are available by appointment year-round.

WOODFIN YMCA WALKING CLUB: Meets 9 a.m. Mondays at the bird sanctuary at Beaver Lake, Merrimon Avenue. Open to everyone. Call Lynn at 768-1338 or visit http://ymcawnc.org.

HUNTING/FISHING

CASTING FOR RECOVERY: A support and educational program for breast cancer survivors, now taking applications for two free weekend retreats for women of all ages, in any stage of breast cancer. Learn the art and skill of fly fishing. Retreat date i s Oct. 21-23 at Lake Logan. 215-4234 or www.castingforrecovery.org.

FLY-FISHING CLASSES: Rivers Edge Outfitters in Cherokee conducts free fly-fishing classes every Saturday at 10 a.m. For more, call 497-9300.

HCC HUNTER SAFETY COURSES: Haywood Community College's Natural Resources Division and the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission offer courses 6-9:30 p.m. Nov. 7-9 in rooms 309 and 310 on the HCC campus. Free. Register at www.ncwildlife.org.

N.C. WILDLIFE RESOURCES COMMISSION: State agency regulating hunting, fishing and trapping seasons and rules.For more information, visit www.ncwildlife.org.

Delayed Harvest Trout Waters Open: Regulations on 26 trout waters in 15 WNC counties are now in effect. No trout can be harvested or possessed from these waters between Oct. 1 and one half-hour after sunset on June 1. No natural bait is allowed, and anglers can fish only with single-hook, artificial lures. For more, visit www.ncwildlife.org.

WNC FLY FISHING EXPO: Third annual Expo is Nov. 5 and 6 at the WNC Agricultural Center in Fletcher, 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Nov. 5 and 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Nov. 6. Speakers, demos, programs, beer, barbecue, gear manufacturers and sales. Tickets are $10 for adults and free for ages 15 and younger. Visit www.wncflyfishingexpo.com.

CLUBS

FRENCH BROAD RIFLES: Meet for muzzle-loading target shooting at 9 a.m. the second Saturday of each month at the club's range in Madison County. E-mail hchadw1932@aol.com.

LAND O' SKY TROUT UNLIMITED: Asheville-based organization of anglers and conservationists dedicated to the protection of trout and their habitat. Visit www.landoskytu.com. Meetings are at 7 p.m. the second Tuesday of each month.

LAND OF THE SKY BASSMASTERS: WNC's oldest bass club and NC BASS Federation affiliated club meets the first Tuesday of the month at 6:30 p.m. at Bubba Q's Restaurant across from airport. Serious anglers can build friendships, camaraderie and angling knowledge. For more, call 681-0113.

PIGEON VALLEY BASSMASTERS: New members welcome. Regular meetings are at 7 p.m. the second Monday of each month at Shoney's Restaurant, at Exit 44 off I-40. For more, call Patty Blanton at 712-2846.

PISGAH CHAPTER OF TROUT UNLIMITED: Hendersonville-based anglers and conservationists with members in Polk, Henderson and Transylvania counties. Visit www.main.nc.us/PCTU.

Clubs/Events

ASHEVILLE ROWING CLUB: A nonprofit athletic and social organization dedicated to promoting health, fitness and fun through rowing. For details, visit www.ashevillerowing.org.

ASHEVILLE TRIATHLON CLUB: For competitive and beginner triathletes. Club provides resources, training, racing and social opportunities. Call Greg Duff at 400-5868.

ASHEVILLE YOUTH ROWING ASSOCIATION: For ages 13-18, a youth rowing program at Lake Julian on Saturdays, Sundays and two afternoons per week. Call Jack Gartner at 230-3901 or visit www.ashevilleyouthrowing.com.

GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS TRIATHLON CLUB: Hayesville-based club for those interested in running, biking and swimming competitions. Races throughout the year. For more information. call Scott Hanna at 389-6982, e-mail tri2000@dnet.net or visit www.gsmtc.com.

GREEN RIVER ADVENTURES: Saluda-based guide for professional kayaking instruction, inflatable kayaking trips and custom adventure experiences. Call 800-335-1530 or visit www.greenriveradventures.com.

NANTAHALA OUTDOOR CENTER: Outdoor outfitter, providing whitewater rafting, paddling instruction, adventure travel, group adventure programs, festivals and events, on U.S. 19 W. in the Nantahala Gorge, west of Bryson City. Call 888-905-7238 or visit www.noc.com.

CYCLING

SWANK 65: The 13 annual Swank 65 Mountain Bike Journey starts at 10 a.m. Nov. 6 at Cove Creek Campground in Pisgah National Forest. Entry fee is $110 through Oct. 7, $120 after. Visit www.blueridgeadventures.net.

ASHEVILLE BICYCLE RACING CLUB: Promotes amateur bicycle racing in WNC. Members get organized training rides, coaching and financial assistance. www.abrc.net.

ASHEVILLE WOMEN'S CYCLING: All-female cycling club and all-female racing team, Team Prestige Subaru. Promote recreational road and trail cycling among women. www.ashevillewomenscycling.com.

BLUE RIDGE BICYCLE CLUB: Encourages safe and responsible recreational bicycling in WNC. Weekly rides ranging from novice-advanced levels. Rides usually have a designated leaders and cyclists will not be left behind. For more, visit www.blueridgebicycleclub.org.

PISGAH AREA SORBA: Chapter of the Southern Off-Road Bicycle Association, dedicated to improving technical off-road biking programs through advocacy for quality trail systems. Visit www.pisgahareasorba.org.

TRACK CYCLING CLINICS/TRAINING: Clinics and skills practice, 9 a.m.-noon Saturdays, Carrier Park, Amboy Road, Asheville. Open to all ages. Email mpbikegirl@aol.com. www.mellowdrome.com.

CAROLINA YOUTH MOUNTAIN BIKE LEAGUE: Races for riders in grades K-12, including bike related contests, healthy food, health workshops, professional mountain bikers. Call 230-0985 or www.cymbl.org. $25 per race of $100 for five-race series. Ages 6 and younger race free. Championship race is Oct. 23 at Falling Creek Camp, Tuxedo.

BRBC TUESDAY MORNING RIDES: The Blue Ridge Bicycle Club holds rides the first Tuesday of the month starting at Fletcher Park. All other Tuesday's rides start from Liberty Bicycles,1378 Hendersonville Road. Visit www.blueridgebicycleclub.org.

PARKS, CLUBS, & MORE

ASHEVILLE LAWN BOWLING: Meet 2-4 p.m.W ednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays, weather permitting, at Carrier Park green on Amboy Road. Free instruction and the use of club bowls. Call Hans at 684-1815 or Stan at 665-7768.

ASHEVILLE MUSHROOM CLUB: Meets monthly at the WNC Nature Center on Gashes Creek Road in Asheville. Meetings are open to the public. Membership is required to participate in forays. $18 individuals, $25 family. www.ashevillemushroomclub.com.

ASHEVILLE PARKS OUTDOOR ADVENTURES: Asheville Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts offers many opportunities for outdoor adventure this winter and spring. Fees are listed for Asheville city residents and for non-residents. Call Christen McNamara at 251-4029 or e-mail outdoorprograms@ashevillenc.gov.

ASHEVILLE ZIPLINE CANOPY ADVENTURES: Tours run at 9 and 10:30 a.m. and 12:30, 2 and 4 p.m. daily. The full course takes 2 1/2 hours. Cost is $45-$79 per person. Through Sept. 30, locals can zip for half-price. Call 877-247-5538 or visit www.ashevilleziplinecanopyadventures.com.

WESTERN CAROLINA BOTANICAL CLUB: Identifies and studies native plants and their habitats and encourages members and the public to protect and preserve the biodiversity of our natural world. Weekly field trips, community service projects, workshops and more. Beginners are welcome. Call 696-2077.

BLUE RIDGE NATURALIST CENTER: Various programs, walks and seminars for the community. At UNC Asheville. Call 251-6198 for more information or to register for programs.

CARL SANDBURG HOME: National park located in Flat Rock. Tours of the home (admission fee), several miles of hiking trails, gardens, descendants of Mrs. Sandburg's dairy goat herd. Free programs year-round. 693-4178 or www.nps.gov/carl.

CAROLINA MOUNTAIN LAND CONSERVANCY: Hendersonville-based nonprofit dedicated to land preservation. Guided hikes, outreach events and volunteer opportunities. Contact Aimee McGinley, outreach@carolinamountain.org, 697-5777 or visit http://carolinamountain.org.

CHIMNEY ROCK PARK: North Carolina's newest state park is 25 miles southeast of Asheville. Hiking trails, guided rock climbing, bird watching, children's programs. Admission fee. Call 625-9611, 800-277-9611 or visit www.chimneyrockpark.com.

CRADLE OF FORESTRY: Site of the first forestry school in America, founded in 1898. CFC strives to stimulate interest in the relationship between people and forests. On U.S. 276 in Pisgah National Forest. Entry fee is $6 for ages 16 and older, $3 for ages 15 and younger and America the Beautiful and Golden Age pass holders. Visit www.cradleofforestry.com.

Legend of Tommy Hod
ges: Outdoor drama on the paved Biltmore Campus Trail, 6:15, 7:30 and 8:45 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Oct. 21 & 22. Wear good walking shoes, dress warmly and bring a flashlight.

DIAMOND BRAND OUTDOORS: Outdoor enthusiasts have opportunity to participate in several types of free instructional clinics and special events. A complete schedule and information can be found at www.diamondbrand.com.

DUPONT STATE FOREST: Miles of multiuse trails, waterfalls and lakes straddling Henderson and Transylvania counties. No admission fee. Visit www.dupontforest.com.

ELISHA MITCHELL AUDUBON SOCIETY: Promotes an awareness and appreciation of nature, to preserve and protect wildlife and natural ecosystems and to encourage responsible environmental stewardship. Offers bird walks, naturalist programs. Visit www.main.nc.us/emas.

ENVIRONMENTAL AND CONSERVATION ORGANIZATION: Hendersonville-based conservation nonprofit. Guided hikes and community events. Call 692-0385 or visit www.eco-wnc.org.

FLETCHER DISC GOLF: Fletcher Parks and Recreation-hosted disc golf doubles program is at 5:30 p.m. Thursdays at Fletcher Community Park. Program to players of any ability. Loaner discs available. Visit www.fletcherparks.org.

FONTANA VILLAGE: Local author and hiker Jerry Span leads family-friendly, diverse programs throughout the year. For information or to register, call 498-2211, ext. 144.

FOOTHILLS EQUESTRIAN NATURE CENTER: FENCE offers 384 acres of hardwood forest, meadow and wetland for hikers, birdwatchers, gardeners and astronomers. Located at 3381 Hunting Country Road, Tryon. 859-9012 or www.fence.org.

GORGES STATE PARK: State park in Transylvania County, about 45 miles southwest of Asheville. Park office is on U.S. 64 in Sapphire. Trails, waterfalls, picnic areas, campsites. Admission is free. Call 966-9099.

 GRANDFATHER MOUNTAIN: Located off N.C. 221, south of Boone. Attractions include Mile High Swinging Bridge, environmental habitats for native wildlife, natural history museum and alpine hiking trails. Visit www.grandfather.com or call 800-468-7325.

 GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS NATIONAL PARK: Extends 70 miles along the North Carolina-Tennessee border. Hiking trails, scenic driving routes, camping, picnic sites. Open year-round. Free. Call the Oconaluftee Visitor Center on U.S. 441 at 497-1904 or visit www.nps.gov/grsm. 

Cataloochee Valley Tours: Operates hiking guide services and guided tours within the park, April-October. Tours provide an in-depth excursion with University of Florida Certified Master Naturalist, Esther Blakely, focusing on natural and cultural history and elk reintroduction. $35 per person. 450-7985. www.cataloocheevalleytours.com.

LAKE JAMES STATE PARK: At the base of Linville Gorge, Lake James State Park is a 6,510-acre lake with boating, fishing and swimming in season, picnic area, campground, hiking trails and ranger-led nature programs. Call office in Nebo, McDowell County, at 652-5047 or visit www.ncparks.gov.

LOST COVE NATURALIST CENTER: Offering programs in outdoor self-reliance living skills. Learn primitive technology skills, taught by hands-on professionals. Center is at 160 Grassy Knoll Way, Blowing Rock. More at 295-8570 or www.lostcovenaturalist.com.

MOUNTAIN WILD: Local chapter of the N.C. Wildlife Federation works to preserve and increase wildlife and wildlife habitat of the WNC mountains. Free programs meet the fourth Tuesday of each month at the WNC Nature Center, 75 Gashes Creek Road, Asheville. Call 338-0035.

(Page 12 of 13)

MOUNT MITCHELL STATE PARK: Home to the highest peak east of the Mississippi, Mount Mitchell, 6,684 feet elevation. Located on N.C. 128, off the Blue Ridge Parkway at Milepost 355. Interactive programs are free. Call 675-4611 or e-mail mount.mitchell@ncmail.net.

Wildlife, Weather and Trees of Mount Mitchell. Meet at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 23 at the Education Center.

Winter on Mount Mitchell. Meet at 10 a.m. Oct. 21 at the Education Center to learn what Mount Mitchell State Park is like in the winter and see short video.

Life of a Park Ranger. Meet at 10 a.m. Sunday at the Education Center to learn about ranger life at Mount Mitchell.

N.C. ARBORETUM: Connects people and plants through various year-round programs, lectures and special events. Promotes conservation, education and research. Located off N.C. 191/Brevard Road, south of the Biltmore Square Mall. Call 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org.

PISGAH CENTER FOR WILDLIFE EDUCATION: Ongoing calendar of classes at the center, adjacent to the fish hatchery in Pisgah National Forest near Brevard. Operated by N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. All programs are free; registration required. The center is open to the public daily, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. except Sunday. Call 877-4423.

PURA VIDA ADVENTURES: Adventure guide service offering guided climbing, mountain biking, hiking, water tours and paddling trips. Call 772-579-0005 or visit www.pvadventures.com.

REI ASHEVILLE: Outdoors outfitter in Biltmore Park, 31 Schenck Parkway offers ongoing schedule of classes and special events. Call 687-0918 or visit www.rei.com. Registration required.

SIERRA CLUB (PISGAH): The Pisgah chapter of the national environmental club. Monthly meetings and discussions. Call Robert C. Hynett at 693-1975 or e-mail kodiac@cytechcis.net.

(Page 13 of 13)

SIERRA CLUB (WENOCA): Western North Carolina chapter of the Sierra Club. Meetings at Unitarian Church, corner of Charlotte Street and Edwin Place, Asheville, and are free and open to public. Visit www.northcarolina.sierraclub.org/wenoca.

SLICKROCK EXPEDITIONS: Cullowhee-based guide service that runs recreational trips of backpacking, canoeing and camping in wilderness areas throughout the Southeast, as well as in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. Call Burt Kornegay at 293-3999 or visit www.slickrockexpeditions.com.

SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN HIGHLANDS CONSERVANCY: The conservancy works with individuals and local communities to identify, preserve and manage the region's important lands. Hikes scheduled on Saturdays. Call 253-0095 or visit www.appalachian.org.

RV CAMPING CLUB: Small local camping club looking for new members. Camping trips are one weekend per month, March-November. All ages welcome. No dues, no structured activities. We share a love of the outdoors, good company, great food & a roaring campfire. Contact Lillian at lilnau@aol.com or 369-6669.

WILD BIRDS UNLIMITED: Offering various bird programs with instructor and owner Simon Thompson. Visit www.asheville.wbu for directions, more information or contact WBU at 687-9433.

WNC NATURE CENTER: A living museum of plants and animals native to the Appalachian region, 75 Gashes Creek Road in East Asheville. Admission: $8 adults, $5 children, free to members of Friends of the Nature Center. Call 298-5600. www.wildwnc.org.

MOUNT MITCHELL STATE PARK: Home to the highest peak east of the Mi ssissippi, Mount Mitchell, 6,684 feet elevation. Located on N.C. 128, off the Blue Ridge Parkway at Milepost 355. Interactive programs are free. Call 675-4611 or e-mail mount.mitchell@ncmail.net.

Wildlife, Weather and Trees of Mount Mitchell. Meet at 4:30 p.m. Oct. 23 at the Education Center.

Winter on Mount Mitchell. Meet at 10 a.m. Oct. 21 at the Education Center to learn what Mount Mitchell State Park is like in the winter and see short video.

Life of a Park Ranger. Meet at 10 a.m. Sunday at the Education Center to learn about ranger life at Mount Mitchell.

N.C. ARBORETUM: Connects people and plants through various year-round programs, lectures and special events. Promotes conservation, education and research. Located off N.C. 191/Brevard Road, south of the Biltmore Square Mall. Call 665-2492 or visit www.ncarboretum.org.

PISGAH CENTER FOR WILDLIFE EDUCATION: Ongoing calendar of classes at the center, adjacent to the fish hatchery in Pisgah National Forest near Brevard. Operated by N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. All programs are free; registration required. The center is open to the public daily, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. except Sunday. Call 877-4423.

PURA VIDA ADVENTURES: Adventure guide service offering guided climbing, mountain biking, hiking, water tours and paddling trips. Call 772-579-0005 or visit www.pvadventures.com.

REI ASHEVILLE: Outdoors outfitter in Biltmore Park, 31 Schenck Parkway offers ongoing schedule of classes and special events. Call 687-0918 or visit www.rei.com. Registration required.

SIERRA CLUB (PISGAH): The Pisgah chapter of the national environmental club. Monthly meetings and discussions. Call Robert C. Hynett at 693-1975 or e-mail kodiac@cytechcis.net

SIERRA CLUB (WENOCA): Western North Carolina chapter of the Sierra Club. Meetings at Unitarian Church, corner of Charlotte Street and Edwin Place, Asheville, and are free and open to public. Visit www.northcarolina.sierraclub.org/wenoca.

SLICKROCK EXPEDITIONS: Cullowhee-based guide service that runs recreational trips of backpacking, canoeing and camping in wilderness areas throughout the Southeast, as well as in the Southwest and Pacific Northwest. Call Burt Kornegay at 293-3999 or visit www.slickrockexpeditions.com.

SOUTHERN APPALACHIAN HIGHLANDS CONSERVANCY: The conservancy works with individuals and local communities to identify, preserve and manage the region's important lands. Hikes scheduled on Saturdays. Call 253-0095 or visit www.appalachian.org.

RV CAMPING CLUB: Small local camping club looking for new members. Camping trips are one weekend per month, March-November. All ages welcome. No dues, no structured activities. We share a love of the outdoors, good company, great food & a roaring campfire. Contact Lillian at lilnau@aol.com or 369-6669.

WILD BIRDS UNLIMITED: Offering various bird programs with instructor and owner Simon Thompson. Visit www.asheville.wbu for directions, more information or contact WBU at 687-9433.

WNC NATURE CENTER: A living museum of plants and animals native to the Appalachian region, 75 Gashes Creek Road in East Asheville. Admission: $8 adults, $5 children, free to members of Friends of the Nature Center. Call 298-5600. www.wildwnc.org.

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