Beverly Hanks – Asheville Blog http://ashevilleblog.com Your Source for all things Asheville Fri, 20 Jul 2018 18:36:54 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.15 7 Local Stores that have All the Outdoor Gear You Need for Father’s Day http://ashevilleblog.com/7-local-stores-outdoor-gear-need-fathers-day/ http://ashevilleblog.com/7-local-stores-outdoor-gear-need-fathers-day/#respond Sun, 18 Jun 2017 16:37:47 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11104 The French Broad River, along with its tributaries, is an ecological lifeline pulsing through our region. This year for Father’s Day, why not give dear ol’ dad what he needs to tap into that resource and have a great afternoon.

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The French Broad River, along with its tributaries, is an ecological lifeline pulsing through our region. This year for Father’s Day, why not give dear ol’ dad what he needs to tap into that resource and have a great afternoon.

Is your dad the type who prefers the quiet of local rocky streams for early morning trout fishing? Is he a thrill-seeker, riding the whitewater in a custom kayak? Or would he rather band with friends and family for an intense mountain hike, floating down the river afterwards to cool off and enjoy a local brew?

However dad prefers to enjoy the river, he’ll need the right gear. Here are 7 locally-owned outdoor gear stores that have what dad needs.

Black Dome Mountain Sports

Asheville’s original full-service outdoor outfitter, Black Dome carries all the major brands, plus gear from smaller brands and local suppliers. Their CONSPIRACY bar is a great place to watch action films while enjoying a pint and popcorn.

140 Tunnel Road, Asheville | (828) 251-2001

blackdome.com

Diamond Brand Outdoors

Opened in 1964, Diamond Brand is WNC’s first outdoor gear shop. What began as a factory seconds warehouse has grown to a Top 100 outdoor specialty retailer with two locations dedicated to quality brands and high service.

Parkway Center: 1378 Hendersonville Road, Asheville | (828) 684-6262

Downtown Asheville: 53 Biltmore Avenue, Asheville | (828) 771-4761

diamondbrandoutdoors.com

French Broad Outfitters

Located right on the French Broad River, French Broad Outfitters is Asheville’s largest and only full-service, locally-owned paddle shop. They also offer full camping gear rentals, the city’s largest selection of disc golf supplies, and host a variety of river trips.

704 Riverside Drive, Asheville | (828) 505-7371

frenchbroadoutfitters.com

Frugal Backpacker

Frugal Backpacker utilizes decades-old relationships to get samples and first-run gear at unbelievable prices—and pass on that savings to you! Their experts help offer tips and advice to help you find the gear that you really need.

52 Westgate Parkway, Asheville | (828) 209-1530

frugalbackpacker.com

Hunter Banks Fly Fishing

Learn, fish, and shop at Hunter Banks. In addition to offering apparel, tackle, gear storage, and accessories, their two locations offer a variety of classes and guided trips. Whether you’re a fly fishing novice or a pro who’s picky about his gear, they have exactly what you need.

29 Montford Avenue, Asheville | (828) 252-3005

hunterbanks.com

Mast General Store

“From cradles to caskets,” the original Mast General Store opened in 1883 to serve a wide variety of community needs. Now with nine locations in three states, they offer outdoor gear, clothing, home items and accessories, food, toys, and iconic barrels of classic candies.

15 Biltmore Avenue, Asheville | (828) 232-1883

mastgeneralstore.com

Second Gear

Second Gear is Asheville’s answer for affordable outdoor gear and clothing. In addition to offering used gear and dealer samples, the store also carries a selection of new items, including guidebooks and maps.

444 Haywood Road, Asheville | (828) 258-0757

secondgearwnc.com

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5 Places to Experience Local Art and Music in Marshall, NC http://ashevilleblog.com/5-places-experience-local-art-music-marshall-nc/ http://ashevilleblog.com/5-places-experience-local-art-music-marshall-nc/#respond Mon, 10 Apr 2017 17:18:08 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11015 Asheville is arguably the largest hub for local arts in WNC, but by far it is not the only one. Just a short drive north, the small Madison County town of Marshall has made the most of riverside living. There are dozens of local galleries and studios, forming an enclave of artists in the midst of a renaissance.

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Asheville is arguably the largest hub for local arts in WNC, but by far it is not the only one. Just a short drive north, the small Madison County town of Marshall has made the most of riverside living. There are dozens of local galleries and studios, forming an enclave of artists in the midst of a renaissance.

If you haven’t been recently, we recommend making some time to experience the many things that this historic way station has to offer. Here are five places to see local art and music in Marshall.

Marshall High Studios

The epicenter of local arts in town are the Marshall High Studios, a former high school on Blannahassett Island in the middle of the river that’s connected to downtown by a bridge. The building, which dates to 1925, was renovated and reopened in 2007 as a home for 28 artist studios. In addition to hosting working artists who specialize in numerous different media, the 28,000-square-foot facility hosts regular classes, exhibitions, and performances.

The Depot & Zuma Coffee

One Main Street mainstay in Marshall is The Depot, an old-timey general store. It’s a great community shopping spot that doubles as a performance venue on Friday nights, when local musicians strike up a soundtrack of traditional bluegrass and country music. Music can also be heard at Zuma Coffee’s regular Thursday night Zuma Jam.

Madison County Arts Center

Several other local institutions keep Marshall’s art scene humming. Since 1978, the Madison County Arts Center, also on Main Street, has presented regular exhibitions of both traditional and contemporary arts and music. The MCAC also presents classes for kids and adults on a revolving basis, including First Stage Youth Theatre, Junior Appalachian Musicians, and Junior Appalachian Visual Artists.

French Broad Institute

A couple of blocks away is the volunteer-run French Broad Institute (Of Time and The River). “The FBI,” which was opened in 2007 in a former Methodist church (built in 1912), serves the community “by providing a forum for curated collaborations, multidisciplinary performances,” and “an investigative think tank for reimagining the relationship between traditional and avant-garde arts, and between the time-based arts and the natural sciences.”

Learn More about Marshall

Marshall, population 800, is the Madison County seat and sits on the banks of the French Broad River some 20 miles north of Asheville. Read more about Marshall, see more photos, or search for homes in the area from the Beverly-Hanks Marshall community page.

 

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Grove Park is a Neighborhood with a Past, Present, and Future http://ashevilleblog.com/grove-park-neighborhood-past-present-future/ http://ashevilleblog.com/grove-park-neighborhood-past-present-future/#respond Thu, 26 Jan 2017 16:23:09 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=10845 The inviting Grove Park historic district, just northeast of downtown, is considered to be one of the finest neighborhoods in Asheville. Built primary a century ago, the community has its heart in the past, its spirit in the present, and its focus on the future.

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The inviting Grove Park historic district, just northeast of downtown, is considered to be one of the finest neighborhoods in Asheville. Built primary a century ago, the community has its heart in the past, its spirit in the present, and its focus on the future.

A Short History of Grove Park

Grove Park was the vision of Edwin Wiley Grove, a pharmaceutical magnate from St. Louis. It’s widely regarded as North Carolina’s first suburban neighborhood. The first lots were sold in 1909 in an area of curved streets, parks, and natural landscaping—an atmosphere still present today.

“This is pretty much the neighborhood as it was about a hundred years ago,” says Suzanne Escovitz, a Grove Park neighborhood resident. “The layout, the streets, a lot of the housing stock—it’s a good example of one of the first car suburbs in the United States.”

Like so many other historic Asheville residents, including another well-known “tourist”, Biltmore Estate owner George W. Vanderbilt, Grove was at once impressed with the scenery and the climate. The Vanderbilt’s estate, built in the late 1800’s on what was then the south end of town, led the way for Grove and others with similar visions to develop more areas. Along with other well-knowns like architect Richard Sharp Smith, Grove’s architectural planning shaped much of the look of north Asheville.

The Grove Park neighborhood achieved national status after being placed on the National Register of Historic Places in 1989.

In the Shadow of the Omni Grove Park Inn

Grove Park is tucked off of Charlotte Street in north Asheville. Much of the community sits just below the Omni Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa, from which guests and visitors can look out to the city skyline.

Erected in 1913 by Grove’s son-in-law, Fred Seely, the Grove Park Inn on Sunset Mountain was another of Grove’s visions and instantly became the cornerstone of the neighborhood’s identity. The stunning building has played host to a number of American presidents, diplomats, and celebrities over the last century. Today, it has retained its status and is the epicenter for an annual national gingerbread house competition featured in press all across the United States.

“For me it’s a great place to go up and grab a bite, grab a glass of wine on the terrace,” says Suzanne about the Grove Park Inn. “I think it’s wonderful to have a place of prominence on the National Register in the heart of the neighborhood with the homes surrounding it.”

Historic Homes with a Vision of the Future

Photo Courtesy Beverly-Hanks
Photo Courtesy Beverly-Hanks

The Grove Park Historic District is significant to Western North Carolina for its collection of single-family homes that represent the design and construction practices of early twentieth century architecture.

“What makes it, I think, so unique among historic neighborhoods is [that] this is what it looked like pretty much 80 years ago. And in another 80 years—this is the important part—it’s still going to look like this,” says Suzanne.

Most of the development of the neighborhood occurred between 1908 and 1938, illustrating a number of styles including: Georgian, Colonial, Tudor, Bungalow, and Shingle. Many of the homes are sited on wooded parcels averaging half an acre, with occasional size variance where some owners having smartly assembled plots over time. Time-honored deed restrictions concerning setback and building costs have allowed the properties to relate well to each other and maintain a high degree of integrity.

According to Suzanne, “This is a neighborhood that we like to feel has a past, present, and a future to it.”

Learn More about Grove Park

Grove Park is a vibrant historic neighborhood. Read more about the Grove Park neighborhood, see more photos, or search for homes in the area from the Beverly-Hanks Grove Park community page

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10 Downtown Asheville Tours for Locals and Visitors Alike http://ashevilleblog.com/10-downtown-asheville-tours-locals-visitors-alike/ http://ashevilleblog.com/10-downtown-asheville-tours-locals-visitors-alike/#respond Wed, 28 Sep 2016 14:18:35 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=10571 Whether you are contemplating your first trip to Asheville or you’ve lived here for decades, there is always more to learn about the rich history, beautiful architecture, and unique culture of this fair city. But with more than 60 different tours available in town, how would even the most knowledgeable Ashevillian know where to begin?

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Whether you are contemplating your first trip to Asheville or you’ve lived here for decades, there is always more to learn about the rich history, beautiful architecture, and unique culture of this fair city. But with more than 60 different tours available in town, how would even the most knowledgeable Ashevillian know where to begin?

Here is a select sampling of the most popular and adventurous general or historical tours of Asheville. Don’t forget to tip your guides for their tips, and enjoy!

Walking Tours

Asheville by Foot Walking Tours

The Asheville by Foot Walking Tour is an exciting expedition of downtown Asheville. Learn about the 200-year history and architecture of the city, and walk by places not accessible from mobile tours. Plus, get the scoop on the best the city has to offer today from one of Asheville’s insiders.

90 minutes (1.9 miles, mostly flat) with bathroom break, ashevillebyfoottours.com

Historic Montford Walking Tour

The History@Hand walking tour series takes you to key sites around the “Paris of the South.” Among the tours available is the historic Montford tour, which covers over 600 structures in one of the state’s largest historic districts. Or choose the Riverside Cemetery Tour, final resting place of many notable Asheville figures, including Thomas Wolfe and O. Henry.

60 minutes, history-at-hand.com

Urban Trail Walking Tour

Asheville’s urban walking trail tells the history of the city through 30 stops with public statues that serve as landmarks along the way. The markers represent five eras of Asheville, from its earliest days through the most recent Age of Diversity. Whether you’re a local who loves learning more or a history buff new to the city, this tour helps you see Asheville from a new perspective.

Self-guided (1.7 miles), guides available at Pack Place and the Asheville Visitors Center

Mobile Tours

Bike Taxi Tours

These private pedicab tours are great for couples. Choose from the downtown Asheville, self-guided brewery, or historic Montford tour. The downtown discovery tour takes you by many of the city’s popular attractions, pointing out the best food, drink, shopping, and architecture that Asheville has to offer. The relaxing Montford tour is a ride through one of Asheville’s most colorful and historic neighborhoods.

45 minutes–3 hours, ashevillebiketaxi.com

Grey Line Historic Asheville Trolley Tours

Hop aboard the red trolley for a fully narrated tour of Asheville, including the Montford Historic District, Grove Park Inn, downtown, River Arts District, and Historic Biltmore Village. Trolleys depart every 30 minutes (in season), and ticket-holders have unlimited hop-on and hop-off privileges at each of the 10 stops.

1.5–1.75 hours round trip, graylineasheville.com

LaZoom City Comedy Bus Tours

More than a tour, the LaZoom bus promises riders a show. And, boy, do they deliver! The iconic purple bus offers tours that are both historical and hysterical. Adding to the fun, riders are welcome to BYOB for the tour. We know you’ve seen them around town. If you haven’t yet, get on the big purple bus!

90 minutes with a 10 break, ages 13+ OR the Kids Comedy Tour: 60 minutes, ages 4+, lazoomtours.com

Moving Sidewalk Tours

Downtown Asheville awaits as you glide along on your very own Segway PT. Wes, the tour leader, teaches first-time riders the secrets of the Segway, then guides you through downtown in style. With his help, even the most uncoordinated get the hang of the devices quickly (trust us – we know!).

2–2 1/2 hours (including 20–30 minutes of training), ages 14+, movingsidewalktours.com

More Eclectic Tours

Amazing Pubcycle

One half guided tour of town, one half BYO beer night, and one half pedaling machine, the Amazing Pubcycle will make you forget how fractions work. The 13-person pedal/solar powered (motor assisted) vehicle lets you hang out at your favorite pub while you get a fun and memorable tour of downtown.

40-minute or 90-minute options, ages 21+ to drink, amazingpubcycle.com

Vampire and Occult Walking Tour of Asheville

Presented by Asheville’s own ghost-hunting celeb, Joshua P. Warren, this tour covers the parts of Asheville you don’t always see in the day. Learn about the city’s haunted past and present as co-creator Tadd McDivitt guides you through the ghosts, witches, vampires, and goblins that have called Asheville home.

2 hours (some hills), hauntedasheville.com

Yoga Tours

Grab your water bottle and walking shoes, and take a deep breath. Now exhale. Asheville Yoga Tours allow travelers to wind, walk, stretch, and breathe their way around downtown’s historic architecture. The Art Deco architecture will energize even yoga lovers of all skill levels in this tour that offers a unique experience of Asheville.

120 minutes (bathroom break at beginning), beginner safe, yogatours.net

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Celebrating 100 Years of State and National Parks in WNC http://ashevilleblog.com/celebrating-100-years-state-national-parks-wnc/ http://ashevilleblog.com/celebrating-100-years-state-national-parks-wnc/#respond Sat, 27 Aug 2016 14:33:18 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=10466 Western North Carolina’s natural beauty has drawn visitors and residents to our area for centuries, so it’s no surprise that some of the very first state and national parks were established right here. Today, our region is surrounded by protected parklands, which are visited by millions of people each year and provide a stunning backdrop for our cities and towns.

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Western North Carolina’s natural beauty has drawn visitors and residents to our area for centuries, so it’s no surprise that some of the very first state and national parks were established right here. Today, our region is surrounded by protected parklands, which are visited by millions of people each year and provide a stunning backdrop for our cities and towns.

2016 marks the 100th birthday of the US National Park Service, as well as the centennial for Chimney Rock State Park and Pisgah National Forest. Celebrate these milestones by learning, relaxing, and reconnecting with nature in these unique protected areas.

 

Mount Mitchell State Park

In 1916, North Carolina gained 795 acres of land, creating the first state park in all of the Southeast: Mount Mitchell. Since then, the state system has grown to almost 250,000 acres dedicated to conservation, recreation, and education.

“The idea of protecting and preserving North Carolina’s natural and cultural resources really started with Mount Mitchell State Park,” says Skyler Hill, park ranger at Mount Mitchell. “Those seeds of conservation were planted really early in the 1900s. With the starting of the state park system, not only throughout the state of North Carolina do you find what would be considered world-class scenery and great recreational opportunities, but you find land and waters that are really unique to this country and are very valuable to North Carolina citizens.”

Mount Mitchell boasts the highest peak east of the Mississippi at a lofty 6,684 feet. Lucky for us near Asheville, the views from the peak are just a short drive away. “As long as you can get onto the Blue Ridge Parkway,” says Ranger Hill, “you can access Mount Mitchell.” Mount Mitchell State Park provides a great opportunity for day-use visitors who want to drive all the way to the summit viewing deck or for people who want to hike all the way from the base to the summit.

Pisgah National Forest and Great Smoky Mountains National Park

One of the first national forests in the US, Pisgah National Forest also celebrates its centennial this year. Comprising more than 500,000 acres of hardwood forests and cascading waterfalls across 12 counties, Pisgah makes up a significant portion of the remaining forested land in Western North Carolina. Pisgah is home of the first tract of land bought under the Weeks Act of 1911, a purchase which led to the creation of national forests along the eastern United States. The protected area is also home to the nation’s first school of forestry, now accessible as the Cradle of Forestry Historic Site.

“Having lived here all my life, I have an affinity and a love for the mountains themselves,” says Gavin Brown, mayor of Waynesville. “My favorite thing to do is to simply get on the expressway and keep going west until the sun sets. And if I get to the Blue Ridge Parkway or if I get to the Smoky Mountains National Park, I just keep going because there’s nothing to stop me.”

Attracting more than 9 million tourists and 11 million non-recreational visitors each year, Great Smoky Mountains National Park is the most visited in the United States and it’s easy to see why. The park is a perfect retreat for for hiking, camping, fly fishing, and other outdoor activities. Even as one of only a few national parks that does not charge an entrance fee, GSNP serves as an economic hub generating over $700 million per year and supporting more than 10,000 jobs in surrounding communities.

Lucky visitors of GSMNP can also view the park’s signature wild elk, reintroduced to the Cataloochee Valley in 2001 after nearly becoming extinct, and now thriving in this striking success of natural conservation.

Chimney Rock State Park

Chimney Rock State Park, overlooking Lake Lure, North Carolina, has been a part of the NC State Park system since 2007. This tourist attraction has been owned by the Morse family since 1902, and the family has worked with the state of North Carolina to ensure its preservation for future generations. Since the park was founded priavtely in 1916, the family has worked with the State of North Carolina to manage the park’s trails, outlook, climbing tower, and discovery center, as well as to ensure its preservation for future generations.

“A visit to Chimney Rock Park gives people the opportunity to see the best of the mountains in one place,” says Mary Jaeger-Gale, general manager of Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park. “We have fabulous cliffs, we have a waterfall, we have outstanding views, the geological and botanical features are incredibly significant, and people can come away not only having had a fabulous mountain experience but learn a lot about why these mountains are so special.”

Western North Carolina’s state and national parks provide an abundance of natural resources, as well as employment opportunities for those entrusted with their care and conservation. It is important we continue to support and protect our state and national park systems for future generations. “I personally believe that the whole economic future of Western North Carolina is based on its geography,” says Mayor Brown. “If we maintain the integrity of that geography, then we’ll have an economy that we can survive in.”

To find out how to volunteer or how to join in our parks’ centennial celebrations, visit their websites: ncparks.gov/mount-mitchell-state-park, nps.gov/grsm, and chimneyrockpark.com. To learn more about all the incredible natural resources in Western North Carolina, contact your Beverly-Hanks & Associates real estate associate today.

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