Community News – Asheville Blog http://ashevilleblog.com Your Source for all things Asheville Tue, 25 Sep 2018 16:51:00 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.5.15 New Front Entrance Opens at WNC Nature Center http://ashevilleblog.com/new-front-entrance-opens-wnc-nature-center/ http://ashevilleblog.com/new-front-entrance-opens-wnc-nature-center/#respond Mon, 10 Sep 2018 13:26:02 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11799 The WNC Nature Center will welcome guests into their new front entrance beginning Wednesday, September 12, 2018. The Center will be closed to guests on Tuesday, September 11th in preparation.

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The WNC Nature Center will welcome guests into their new front entrance beginning Wednesday, September 12, 2018. The Center will be closed to guests on Tuesday, September 11th in preparation.

“We’re excited to offer this enhanced guest experience to our visitors,” said Chris Gentile, Director of the WNC Nature Center. “The new front entrance will allow us to better serve our growing number of guests with smoother check in, enhanced parking, a separate entrance for school groups and the use of the Festiva Event Plaza for events.”

The WNC Nature Center broke ground on the front entrance project in 2017. Improvements include handicapped parking and ramp, sidewalks through parking for safety, new guest restrooms, an events plaza, and new exhibits. Guests will now be able to enter the Center’s main grounds through the barn area where they can visit the new chicken habitat, Virginia the opossum, and more.

The Center will be open for normal business hours, 10am-5pm, on Wednesday, September 12th. The first 50 families in the door will receive a free water bottle from the Friends of the WNC Nature Center to celebrate the opening of the new front entrance. A ribbon cutting event will follow on Saturday,

December 1st at 11am during the Nature Center’s popular Winter’s Tail event. This project was funded in part by the City of Asheville, and by the Friends of the WNC Nature Center with support from the Buncombe County Tourism Development Authority’s Tourism Product Development Fund, and from Festiva. Other contributors to the project include charitable foundations, businesses, and many generous individual donors.

Friends of the WNC Nature Center 

The Friends’ mission is to support the programs, facilities and the residents of the Western North Carolina Nature Center, which showcases the fauna and flora of the southern Appalachian region. The WNC Nature Center connects people with the animals and plants of the Southern Appalachian Mountain region by inspiring appreciation, nurturing understanding, and advancing conservation of the region’s rich biodiversity. For more information on the Friends of the WNC Nature Center, or to join the Friends and support future projects, visit www.wildwnc.org .

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New Volunteerism Centered Book Club http://ashevilleblog.com/new-volunteerism-centered-book-club/ http://ashevilleblog.com/new-volunteerism-centered-book-club/#respond Mon, 27 Aug 2018 21:10:54 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11774 There's a new all-ages book club coming to Spellbound Children's Bookshop called the Action Book Club. For each meeting of the book club, attendees will read about a subject and then take concrete action together to make the community a better place, partnering with a different non-profit organization each time. 

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There’s a new all-ages book club coming to Spellbound Children’s Bookshop called the Action Book Club. For each meeting of the book club, attendees will read about a subject and then take concrete action together to make the community a better place, partnering with a different non-profit organization each time. 

Spellbound’s Action Book Club will meet every other month with the current theme and a list of suggested books at various reading levels announced ahead of time on the bookstore’s website and Facebook page. Pick one book for the whole family to read together or everyone who wants to participate can read a book on their own. There will be titles appropriate for kids, teens, and adults on the suggested reading list. Adults and teens are welcome to come on their own; kids under thirteen years of age must have an adult accompanying them and staying for the whole meeting.

At each meeting, attendees gather to take part in an easy and fun service project that ties in with the theme. The youngest kids may need help from an adult, but everyone should be able to participate.

For the very first meeting of Action Book Club, Spellbound is partnering with Asheville Humane Society. The action part of the meeting will be making easy no-sew toys for dogs and cats (with plenty of instruction and all materials provided) while a representative of AHS gives a talk about the organization and how people of any age can find a way to help. There may even be time to chat about some of the books everyone read!

All ages welcome. Free to attend. No purchase required. The first meeting of Spellbound’s Action Book Club will take place on Thursday October 4th from 5:00 to 6:00pm at The Hop Ice Cream Cafe on Merrimon Avenue. Please see www.spellboundbookshop.com for details.

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Asheville Humane Society to Host Pop-Up Cat Cafe http://ashevilleblog.com/asheville-humane-society-host-pop-cat-cafe/ http://ashevilleblog.com/asheville-humane-society-host-pop-cat-cafe/#respond Wed, 01 Aug 2018 16:32:25 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11734 Kitten season is in full swing and Asheville Humane Society has plenty of felines who need loving homes. To help them all get adopted, Asheville Humane Society will host its first pop-up cat cafe on Friday and Saturday, August 3 - 4, in Gerber Village (Suite 104). Gerber Mills LLC is temporarily donating the unoccupied space to Asheville Humane Society for this event.

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Kitten season is in full swing and Asheville Humane Society has plenty of felines who need loving homes. To help them all get adopted, Asheville Humane Society will host its first pop-up cat cafe on Friday and Saturday, August 3 – 4, in Gerber Village (Suite 104). Gerber Mills LLC is temporarily donating the unoccupied space to Asheville Humane Society for this event.

For a $15 donation, patrons will receive one free (non-alcoholic) beverage and one hour to hang out with adoptable cats and kittens! The cafe will be open from 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM both days and people can sign up on Asheville Humane Society’s website to secure their time slot. There is a 20-person maximum per hour, but walk-ins will be welcome if space allows. Children must be at least 10 years old and accompanied by an adult to attend.

Meredith Pitcairn, Communications & Digital Fundraising Manager at Asheville Humane Society, is excited to bring the cat cafe trend to Asheville. “Summer is always a busy time of year for shelters with more animals coming to us in need of help,” said Pitcairn. “We are thrilled to offer this pop-up shop to our cat-loving community while giving homeless kitties another opportunity to find their forever homes.”

What: Asheville Humane Society’s Pop-up Cat Cafe

When: Friday, August 3 and Saturday, August 4, 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM

Where: Gerber Village, Suite 104 (10 Crispin Court, Asheville, NC)

 

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ASHEVILLE OUTLETS TO HOST BACK TO SCHOOL GIVE TO THE MUSIC KIDS DAY http://ashevilleblog.com/asheville-outlets-host-back-school-give-music-kids-day/ http://ashevilleblog.com/asheville-outlets-host-back-school-give-music-kids-day/#respond Fri, 27 Jul 2018 16:37:58 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11739  

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 Sunday, August 5, 2018 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Asheville Outlets will host a Back-to-School Kids Day with Give to the Music on Sunday, August 5, 2018 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The event is free for children and their families and will feature live music from Rock Academy, arts & crafts, interactive booths and displays, strolling magic, face painting, balloon art and more!

“Asheville Outlets is pleased to partner with Give to the Music for a day of fun, all for a good cause,” explains Sharon Morgan, General Manager, Asheville Outlets. “Give to the Music provides the opportunity for children to participate in musical expression who otherwise may not be able due to financial hardship.”

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Mercy Urgent Care Announces New Location in Burnsville http://ashevilleblog.com/mercy-urgent-care-announces-new-location-burnsville/ http://ashevilleblog.com/mercy-urgent-care-announces-new-location-burnsville/#respond Fri, 27 Jul 2018 16:34:17 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11736 Yancey County Will Be Home to 6th Mercy Urgent Care Location in WNC

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Yancey County Will Be Home to 6th Mercy Urgent Care Location in WNC

Mercy Urgent Care is pleased to announce its newest location in Burnsville, opening on Friday, August 31, at 9 am. For residents and visitors of Yancey County and the surrounding area, this new facility means that high-quality, affordable and convenient medical care for non-life-threatening illnesses and injuries will be just minutes (instead of an hour) away. Patients in Yancey County will now have access to walk-in care at a fraction of the cost of an ER visit. 

Mercy Urgent Care is excited to bring healthcare and support to the community by partnering with Yancey County who received a $50,000 economic development grant from the North Carolina Department of Commerce Rural Infrastructure Authority. To officially mark the opening of Mercy’s new Burnsville location, the Burnsville/Yancey County Chamber of Commerce will hold a ribbon cutting ceremony on Tuesday, September 11, from 4 to 6 pm.

“As a longtime native and resident of Yancey County, I am very grateful and take great pride in the opportunity to serve the community that has meant so much to me throughout the years,” said Sara Greer, a Mercy nurse practitioner joining the Burnsville team. “The opening of the new Mercy Urgent Care facility in Burnsville will be a great asset and resource for our town. I am truly excited to be able to work with and for the wonderful people, employers and families of Burnsville and surrounding areas.”

Mercy Urgent Care Burnsville, at 41 Charlie Brown Road, will be the sixth Western North Carolina location for the nonprofit organization headquartered in Asheville. “Because Burnsville is such a small community nestled in the mountains, people have not had options for a full range of healthcare,” said Sister Peggy Verstege, the Mercy Urgent Care Mission Effectiveness Coordinator and Burnsville native. “But as small as it may be, we are planning to bring compassionate, affordable care and new growth to the people of Yancey County.”

In addition to services for individuals and families, Mercy Urgent Care Burnsville will offer workplace-related healthcare services through its Mercy Occupational Medicine division. Employers in or near Yancey County can take advantage of a wide array services, from workplace screening and testing to workplace incident management. Mercy Occupational Medicine offers board-certified physicians and licensed, highly-trained personnel to meet the needs of businesses and their employees. 

“Mercy Urgent Care is excited to bring our long history of excellence in healthcare to Burnsville,” noted Medical Director Dr. Elizabeth McCarty. “We look forward to serving the community for all their urgent care and occupational medicine needs.” 

Known for its compassionate and affordable care, Mercy helps your family, friends and neighbors recover from injury and illness and get back to a healthy life. A committed community partner in the areas it serves, Mercy is a certified North Carolina Best Employer and a proud living wage employer.

Mercy Urgent Care was founded in Asheville in 1985 as an outreach of the Sisters of Mercy, an international religious institute of Roman Catholic women, begun in 1831 in Dublin, Ireland. Committed to sacredness of life, human dignity, mercy, justice, service and excellence, Mercy Urgent Care believes everyone should have access to convenient, affordable and high-quality healthcare. The Sisters of Mercy have served WNC since 1900, operating the former St. Joseph’s Hospital for nearly 100 years before its sale to Mission in 1998.

Supporting the residents and visitors of Western North Carolina is a top priority, and to do this effectively, Mercy Urgent Care, as an independent provider, accepts most major insurances including Blue Cross Blue Shield North Carolina; offers a self-pay option for those without insurance, with simple, tiered “fee for service” pricing; and has a Compassionate Care financial assistance program for qualifying patients.

Mercy Urgent Care has served more than one million patients in Western North Carolina. Donations to not-for-profit Mercy Urgent Care’s Catherine McAuley Mercy Foundation enable care throughout WNC in Brevard, Weaverville, three Asheville locations, and now Burnsville – providing more than a half-million dollars in charity care locally as well as sending medical teams and supplies internationally. More information about the organization and all locations can be found at www.mercyurgentcare.org.

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Inaugural Smokies Stomp Raises Over $60,000 to Support National Park http://ashevilleblog.com/inaugural-smokies-stomp-raises-60000-support-national-park/ http://ashevilleblog.com/inaugural-smokies-stomp-raises-60000-support-national-park/#respond Thu, 26 Jul 2018 16:45:13 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11741 Community members from across Western North Carolina gathered for the inaugural Smokies Stomp Barn Party in support of Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) Saturday, July 21st. The event raised more than $60,000 to fund park projects and featured a ‘fund-a-cause’ for Parks As Classrooms, which provides hands-on curriculum-based environmental education programming for thousands of WNC schoolchildren. 

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Community members from across Western North Carolina gathered for the inaugural Smokies Stomp Barn Party in support of Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) Saturday, July 21st. The event raised more than $60,000 to fund park projects and featured a ‘fund-a-cause’ for Parks As Classrooms, which provides hands-on curriculum-based environmental education programming for thousands of WNC schoolchildren. 

“At Friends of the Smokies, we want every child to have the opportunity to experience the wonder and joy found in Great Smoky Mountains National Park,” said board director Laura Webb. “The Smokies Stomp was an astounding testament to our community’s commitment to that goal and we are grateful for the generosity of all who attended.”

Representative John Ager (NC-115) and his wife Annie, owners of Hickory Nut Gap Farm, called the square dance with live music provided by both NewTown and the Bonafide Band during the evening. GSMNP Superintendent Cassius Cash, Representative Chuck McGrady (NC-117) and former Congressman and Friends of the Smokies board director Heath Shuler also attended the event. 

The Smokies Stomp Barn Party is held in Fairview, NC at Hickory Nut Gap Farm and is presented by Wandering Rose Travels and Webb Investment Services with support from Blue Ghost Brewing, Merrill Lynch, Beverly-Hanks, Biltmore Wines, Blue Ridge Printing, Wilcox Travel & Tours, Insurance Service of Asheville, Navitat Canopy Adventures, Roberts & Stevens Attorneys at Law, White Labs, Wildland Trekking, Dan & Deener Matthews, Chase & Clary Pickering, Rob & Meridith Powell, and Jim & Jan Hart. 

Photos from Saturday’s event and more information can be found at SmokiesStomp.org

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AMOS Announces New Executive Director http://ashevilleblog.com/amos-announces-new-executive-director/ http://ashevilleblog.com/amos-announces-new-executive-director/#respond Wed, 25 Jul 2018 16:50:53 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11744 Amanda Bryant Takes the Helm as Museum Continues to Grow

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Amanda Bryant Takes the Helm as Museum Continues to Grow

Asheville Museum of Science (AMOS) has completed its search for a new Executive Director and is pleased to announce Amanda Bryant has accepted the position. Ms. Bryant has been serving as Interim Executive Director since April. Her leadership has allowed daily museum operations to continue seamlessly during the transition period and she has proven her skill and resolve in managing the day-to-day functions as well as helping shape a strategic plan for the museum’s future.

“We were fortunate to have Ms. Bryant step in as Interim Director and are immensely pleased to have her permanently fill the role after a national search,” said Matthew Maultsby, President of the Board of AMOS. “She’s a strong leader with the background AMOS needs to achieve its goals of expansion as an educational resource to schools and families, and continued partnership development with Asheville industries, art community, and city and county entities.”

 In addition to her experience within the organization, Ms. Bryant’s strong relationships in the community and her commitment to the AMOS mission and vision will be key as the museum continues its growth.  She also brings a wealth of expertise in overseeing programs with city and county impacts that will help AMOS during its evolution into a flagship regional science museum.

 A Western North Carolina native who has lived and worked in both Washington, DC and Asheville for the past 12 years, Ms. Bryant most recently served as a Strategic Communications Executive at the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) External Affairs. She brings extensive experience from that role as well as her role at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). Her work at both agencies has given her a solid science background, along with crucial organizational and communications skills.

 “To be given the opportunity to grow the museum into a showcase of science, technology, and innovation is extremely gratifying. I’m honored to work with an incredible team who is transforming AMOS into the attraction that locals and tourist alike put on their must experience list while also leading the conversation on how we attract more science and technology professionals to our diverse area and support workforce development through STEM education.”

 Ms. Bryant also holds a degree in education and communications – a tremendous advantage as AMOS plans to expand its educational offerings, including camps and at-school and afterschool programs. She and her husband, Brandon, live in North Asheville with their six-year-old daughter, Charlee, and their dog, Tag.

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Western North Carolina Activists Take Fight For Free Healthcare To Streets In Washington DC http://ashevilleblog.com/fight-for-free-healthcare/ http://ashevilleblog.com/fight-for-free-healthcare/#respond Sun, 10 Jun 2018 17:54:23 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11698 On Saturday, June 23, Western North Carolina advocates for National Improved Medicare for All join other National Improved Medicare for All advocates from across the country to take to the streets to make the case for Single Payer Healthcare for All.

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On Saturday, June 23, Western North Carolina advocates for National Improved Medicare for All join other National Improved Medicare for All advocates from across the country to take to the streets to make the case for Single Payer Healthcare for All.

The group will join forces with Health Over Profit for Everyone, who has worked in conjunction with the Backbone Campaign to  organize the Medicare for All aspect of the march. The Western North Carolina group and the two organizations  listed above  support H.R. 676, which has a record 122 co-sponsors — more than half of all Democrats in the US House of Representatives. The Senate bill, S. 1804, has 17 co-sponsors, including Sen. Bernie Sanders the lead sponsor.

The healthcare component of the march will feature people telling their personal stories explaining why they support National Improved Medicare for All. Visuals will include a massive ball and chain symbolizing the burden of current health care in the United States which includes high premiums as well as co-payments and high deductibles and narrow healthcare networks which are all barriers to care. At the same time Medicaid, which provides healthcare to 74 million people, is being cut, burdening low-income people with healthcare costs.

The Western North Carolina group is bringing six 10-ft vertical banners that say “Health Justice” and four 6-ft horizontal banners that say “Medicare for All, Everybody In” and “Medicare for All, Nobody Out.”  In addition they are bringing a 20-ft tall deer fence banner and bringing dozens of handmade signs that call for Medicare for All. Organizers will distribute health security cards to demonstrate how single payer would provide lifelong healthcare including dental, optical and access to all health providers without premiums or co-pays.

More information available at www.healthoverprofit.org AND PeopleForHealthcare.org

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Better Dads Festival Returns to Asheville with Grammy Award-winning Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, plus Lyric and The Willies http://ashevilleblog.com/better-dads-festival-returns-asheville-grammy-award-winning-secret-agent-23-skidoo-plus-lyric-willies/ http://ashevilleblog.com/better-dads-festival-returns-asheville-grammy-award-winning-secret-agent-23-skidoo-plus-lyric-willies/#respond Fri, 08 Jun 2018 17:59:03 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11701 This Father’s Day weekend, the Better Dads Festival returns to Asheville with its unique mix of active, soulful, inspirational, fun, and educational activities to celebrate fatherhood. The event welcomes people of all ages from Asheville’s diverse communities.

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This Father’s Day weekend, the Better Dads Festival returns to Asheville with its unique mix of active, soulful, inspirational, fun, and educational activities to celebrate fatherhood. The event welcomes people of all ages from Asheville’s diverse communities.

The musical lineup will include Grammy Award-Winning Band Secret Agent 23 Skidoo, acclaimed local artist LYRIC (who performs with her father) and The Willies from Nashville. Storytellers Ray Christian and Passion join the festival this year. More than 20 Community Partners will attend the festival, providing information about resources for parents. Food will be supplied by a wide array of Asheville vendors.

Live music, dance, games, costumes, drumming, storytelling, crafts, poetry, and a dress-your-dad photo booth will provide opportunities to play together. Community speakers and sharing circles will invite festival goers to explore how men show up in their lives, their challenges, and new possibilities.

Better Dads Festival is an outgrowth of the work done by men involved with the ManKind Project (MKP), specifically within the Greater Carolina community. MKP is a nonprofit training and education organization with three decades of success hosting life-changing experiential personal development programs for men. MKP supports a global network of peer-facilitated men’s groups and supports men in leading lives of integrity, authenticity and service.

Better Dads Festival was created by Hendersonville resident Alan Kay. “In today’s world, it’s up to all of us, with all of our diversity, to create the next generation of compassionate and authentic men committed to the common good. It’s our collective responsibility to mentor and create a nurturing environment so that all children can grow up in an equitable community. How men show up in the world begins with what our children learn in their families, from the media, in their schools and from their peers. Women and men share equally in determining how we communicate, maintain relationships, respect one another and welcome diversity. While the festival focuses on nurturing dads, all of us have a role to play. We’re delighted by the support of various women’s organizations that have agreed to participate in this event. We all have much to share. We all have much to learn.”

What Better Dads Festival

Where Roger McGuire Green in Pack Square Park, downtown Asheville

Date Saturday, June 16, 2018 (Father’s Day weekend)

Time 12:30 to 9:30 PM

Price Free to the public

Contact Jeffrey Goldwasser, jeffreygoldwasser@gmail.com

Director Tim Chumley, 804-519-2810, thebetterdadsfestival@gmail.com

Website betterdadsfestival.org

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GreenWork Makes the Dream Work http://ashevilleblog.com/greenwork-makes-dream-work/ http://ashevilleblog.com/greenwork-makes-dream-work/#respond Wed, 06 Jun 2018 18:09:45 +0000 http://ashevilleblog.com/?p=11708 To help keep Asheville’s natural lands and waterways free from trash, Asheville Yoga Center is raising funds for Asheville GreenWorks as its Charity of the Month for June 2018.

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Asheville Yoga Center Fundraises to Support local nonprofit Asheville Greenworks

To help keep Asheville’s natural lands and waterways free from trash, Asheville Yoga Center is raising funds for Asheville GreenWorks as its Charity of the Month for June 2018.

All month long, AYC will have donation boxes stationed at the AYC Studio and Boutique for guests to directly contribute funds, and on Thursday, June 28, 10% of all drop-in and community class sales will be donated to the local nonprofit. Along with class donations, AYC will contribute $250 to enhance the community through educational and volunteer-based environmental programs

“Asheville’s natural resources are beloved by the community, and it is incredibly important that we keep our lands healthy and thriving for future generations,” says Melissa Pennscott, General Manager of AYC. “We are grateful for the diligent efforts of Asheville GreenWorks and the hands-on opportunities they provide to our community, and we are happy to support them in any way we can.”

For nearly 50 years, Asheville GreenWorks has worked to provide educational and volunteer-based programs to preserve and protect Asheville’s beautiful landscape. From cleanups along rivers, roads, and forests, to educational programs for effective recycling and waste reduction, Asheville GreenWorks has made a tremendous impact on the quality and health of Asheville’s natural resources.

“Through hands-on service work in our local environment, GreenWorks volunteers form deep connections to the natural world and to other members of the community,” says Dawn Chavez, executive director of Asheville GreenWorks. “A cleaner, healthier environment benefits us all. We are proud to have this opportunity to partner with the Asheville Yoga Center, whose sustainability goals and community-building efforts mirror our organization’s mission and programs.”

On June 16th, GreenWorks will hold its 17th Garden Tour. This year’s tour takes place in the Historic Montford Neighborhood and has a focus on gardens that support native pollinators. The self-guided tour begins at 9:30 am at the Isaac Dickson Elementary School. Tickets and details are available on the GreenWorks website: www.ashevillegreenworks.org/garden-tour.

For more information on Asheville Greenworks, go to ashevillegreenworks.org.

About Asheville Yoga Center

Asheville Yoga Center (AYC) is a leader in providing world-class instruction and support for personal growth through yoga. Founded in 1997, AYC offers classes, teacher trainings, and a retail boutique for yoga practitioners of all levels. Learn more at youryoga.com. 

About Asheville GreenWorks

Asheville GreenWorks inspires, equips and mobilizes individuals and communities to take care of the places we love to live. Since 1973, GreenWorks has worked to enhance the community through educational and volunteer-based environmental programs. With thousands of volunteers, GreenWorks engages the community in grassroots projects such as tree plantings, environmental cleanups, anti-litter and waste reduction education, creation and maintenance of green spaces, and care and preservation of Asheville’s rivers and trees.

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