“Handmade for the Holiday,” Weaverville, Celebrates 6th Annual Season to Benefit Arts for Life on Sunday

benefit event

Consider taking part in Weaverville’s “Handmade for the Holidays” Sunday, Nov. 24. For more information, click on the flier above.

 WEAVERVILLE – The 6th annual handmade for the holidays will be Sunday, Nov. 24, noon-5 p.m., at Weaverville Town Hall. This year, 10 percent of all sales are designated to benefit Arts for Life. 

A partner with Mission Hospital and other North Carolina hospitals serving children, Arts For Life builds bridges and makes lasting connections between the art and healthcare communities of North Carolina. AFL programs offer young patients and their families visual arts, music, and creative writing for more than 250 hours each week, creating successful pediatric clinic art programs, patient and family art support groups, and inpatient art programs.

The best of handmade available during the event includes art prints, candles, clothing and accessories, home goods, jewelry, note cards, ornaments,  paintings, pottery, a raffle with prizes, and more.

Handmade for the Holidays is Sunday, Nov. 24, noon-5 p.m. at Weaverville Town Hall, 30 South Min Street. Checks and cash will be accepted at the event, and 10% of proceeds will be donated to Arts For Life. For more information, visit www.aflnc.org. 

Railway of Dreams

The best way to tour a city is to know it, actually meet it, date it, and learn its history. Don’t we see new places for that very reason?  Don’t we travel to become part of something charming we’ve been bored for, and to find something steeped in a past we’ll weave a connection to?

I’ve had that priviledge, here in my own city.  A 3 mile ride over a once abandoned railroad track did it for me.  It wasn’t the ambiance of the French Broad trailing beside me, or the delightful park we stopped at to picnic and pose for family pictures at, though those places were among the highlights.  For me it was the story.  It was learning the track had sat there for nearly 60 years awaiting a promise.  The track had been useful once, told it would feed into bigger better tracks, and become a part of what Asheville was at the time; a city of railroads leading to industrial dreams, or just public transportation.  The Craggy Mountain Line was promised it would be part of the buzz that eventually had no room for it.  People forgot.

However, a man was born on August 10, 1964, that would save the railroad.  This man rode out of the womb on a steam engine with a dream as long as the track itself.  An avid trainlover, with a passion bordering insanity, his destiny would be to fulfil this railroad’s promise.  It would be a functioning part of Asheville one day.  Even better, it would be saved in the ninth hour, preserving the last of Asheville’s trolley , and usher in an era of old to the new generation.  It would bring joy to the smiling faces of children and train enthusiasts everywhere.  It would become more than hoped for, and would stand the test of time unlike the more prestigious rails that once thrived downtown.  It would carry those cars on its tired rails and reign once again.  It would become the little track that could.

My blessing?  I married into this dream, wedding the son of that man gifted to the lonely track.  I get to become a part of this history up close and personal, sharing my knowledge of it with the world.  This is as much a part of Asheville’s quaint history as anything I’ve seen.

A work in progress, the track will hopefully be open full time in the coming months.  Now, however, keep your eyes peeled for special holiday events, birthday party opportunities, and Saturday night rides.  Taste history, and become it’s family.  You’ll feel the dream when you first step foot on this line, the hallmark of perseverence.



post by:  Lorna Hollifield

For more by Lorna visit http://www.lornahollifield.com and find her on twitter!



Join the Asheville Community Content Team

We are putting together a Community Content Team for the new AskAsheville website and blog that we are launching in a few weeks. A team of 10 is already in place, but we are looking for more people who would like to contribute and share information about a variety of topics. Sections of the new site include News, Women, Beer, Food, Wine, Hotels, Photos, Videos, Business, Events, Music, Entertainment, Neighboring Towns and much more. We are interested in getting a great diversity of contributors that will share Asheville from their “point of view” on a daily, weekly or monthly basis.

You may be a Writer or Blogger in the WNC area that would like to post a weekly story to AskAsheville. Maybe you are a Photographer or Videographer in the community that wants to share a photo or some videos each week with a quick description on the blog. You may be a marketer and have a few clients or business connections that you would like to write about on a monthly basis. Or maybe you just like to go out and eat, drink, tour, dance, shop and have a good time; and you want to start documenting the experiences, making them count more, and building a portfolio of your work. You post it… and we distribute it online through our social media audiences which reach so many focused on the Asheville area.

Team meetings (online & offline) and full support will be offered including educational opportunities for you to teach your area of expertise, and learn from other teammates. We are implementing a mentorship and internship program as well, so if there is an area of media that you would like to learn more about or improve on; we can help you with training. We can also assist you with credit and a certificate for the work you complete. This could mean extra-credit for you in College and this will give you more credibility to potential employers and clients.

Building a community takes a little bit of this and a little bit of that. Some of you, some of me, some of all of us. Can you write 200 words per month or per week about something that pertains to Asheville NC? Can you provide one featured photo per week or month with 25 word description? Can you draw a weekly or monthly cartoon? Maybe you want to do an Asheville Short Story series? We’ve got your back! We will feature you on our new website, link to you, promote you and your content, and the whole team will support you. We invite you to apply to be on our Asheville Community Content Team.

Contact AskAsheville

Asheville Restaurant Spotlight – Mother & Son Bistro and Bakery

Where North Asheville and Woodfin collide in a struggle for identity, lies a quiet little jewel called Mother & Son Bistro and Bakery. Their roadside banner says “dining on the hill” and indeed that is where they are located, on the hillside center called Stone Ridge Business Park located next to Citizens Hardware. Some of you long time residents will remember this location as the former skating rink run by the Powers family, who continue their community involvement with the development of the business park.

If this is your first visit, the minute you step through the doors your senses are assaulted with the overflowing bakery cases of cakes, pies, muffins and Danishes. As you stand there gawking a friendly voice from behind the counter greets you then inquires if you’d like to continue on into the dining room and perhaps enjoy a meal or choose from any of 5 daily hot soups. In to the dining room you go. The decor is whimsical and relaxing, the music from the big band era. The menu includes breakfast, lunch and a separate dinner menu is available after 5:00 PM. Sunday’s are an extra treat as they offer a buffet brunch that includes breakfast, salad and fruit bar as well as rotating dinner items and dessert cart.

Sometime during your visit, the kitchen doors swing open and out comes “Mom,” who makes it a personal goal to check on all customers to make sure their dining experience is a good one and to welcome you as a new member of the family. She remembers everybody by name. Family is what this place is all about. After having planned and searched several areas for more than 2 years- the Izon Family made Asheville their new home relocating from Florida. Picking the current location of Mother & Son Bistro involved much renovation and improvements to the building in order to bring things up to Moms standards. During the course of construction- 2 tragedies befell the family. Mom’s father died and she returned to Florida to be with her mother for the funeral. Within days of returning from Florida and preparing for the Grand Opening- Ryan (son) became critically ill and was rushed into Mission hospital where he remained for the next 6 weeks battling for his life. During all this- Mother & Son Bistro opened their doors for business, not in a grand flourish as was planned, but under extreme duress having lost 1/2 of the dynamic duo in the kitchen.

“Our goal at Mother & Son is to give you great food at a competitive price and make your visit with us feel like a trip to a friends home. I recently heard an interview with a local restaurant owner who claimed his place is the “neighbor meeting spot”. That is the atmosphere we want to provide. We treat people like we want to be treated,” so says the Mom. I have been in food service and hospitality for more years than I care to remember and Ryan and his sister Christina grew up in the industry as well. Christina has a background in corporate hospitality having been a manager for both Wendy’s chain and T.G.I. Friday. She knows operations in the front of the house as well as back of the house. Ryan made a goal of training in the newer techniques of cake decorating and chocolate making as well as art with sugar. He still dreams of the day when his health will permit him to create wonderful confections for the Bistro. He has a love of food and a zeal for fresh ideas.

What are the future plans? Well, we are trying to move forward in a stagnant economy. We have obtained our wine permit and offer a nice but modest selection. Next we would like to offer beer including local breweries and right now we have started the arduous task of putting together investors to expand our square footage to include a full service bar and bar side dining. We outfitted the restaurant without any outside financial assistance but feel we need partners to achieve future goals. But what is the saying? “If you are not moving forward- you’re actually moving backwards”? We will follow the example of the Salmon and continue to struggle up stream.

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