The sun broke through the clouds around 5 p.m. on Friday for the Mountain High BBQ Festival and Car Show, much to the relief of organizers, participants and the community.
“The BBQ Festival was a great success,” said Cindy Cavendar, event coordinator with the Franklin Area Chamber of Commerce. “The weather was rainy on Friday but some braved it and came out. But the rain left and Saturday was a beautiful day. Folks filled the fairgrounds. We appreciate all who came out to make the Festival a success. I think everyone enjoyed the sold-out Tastin' Tent.”
Pandora, Charlotte Chamber.com and Facebook among options
Franklin's Tourism Development Authority met on Monday evening to discuss the 2014-2015 budget, but before they hammered out a plan, acting chairman Summer Woodard provided the board with print outs of last year's budget and the room occupancy tax report that provided monthly collections figures.
With a budget of $100,000, tax collections were reported at $99,648.38. Out of the budgeted amount, $80,413 was spent leaving a balance of $19,586.93.The balance is a result of a decrease in festival funding requests and a smaller amount being spent on Facebook ads and Google Ad Words than had been budgeted.
SiteDart sponsors area students at this year’s Leadercast
With the theme of the 2014 Leadercast being "Beyond You," SiteDart sponsored teens from across WNC and invited them to attend the event, free of charge, to offer them the opportunity to expand the Beyond You mindset into their schools and community.
Beyond You is a heartbeat, a mindset, a critical behavior, an important thread in the fabric of a leader. It’s central to becoming a leader worth following, and that was the message that this year’s Leadercast event conveyed to all who attended.
Habitat for Humanity held its 18th annual Smoky Mountain Shrimp Boil this past Saturday to what looked to be a record crowd.
Volunteers cooked, served and provided entertainment to the shrimp lovers.
Proceeds from the Shrimp Boil help fund Habitat’s building projects in Macon and Jackson counties.
Habitat was formed in 1993 and construction on the 19th home will begin this fall. Macon County/Jackson NC Habitat for Humanity is a nonprofit, ecumenical Christian housing ministry. Its mission is to eliminate poverty housing and homelessness from the world, and to make decent shelter a matter of conscience and action.
On Saturday, April 13, a group of about 50 volunteers comprised of a diverse group of citizens from the Franklin and Highlands areas joined forces to clean up the Cullasaja River Gorge's roadsides and river banks.
This initiative is one of the Highlands Chamber of Commerce's ongoing annual projects to help keep area natural resources clean. The cleanup takes place every spring during the NCDOT's clean sweep week and has been headed up by the Highlands Chamber for the last 10 years.
This year, members of Venture Local Franklin, Franklin Chamber of Commerce staff/board members, Stay And Play in the Smokies, and others joined in to make an even bigger impact on this stretch of the “Mountain Waters Scenic Byway.” Of the 50 volunteers on Saturday, 20 volunteers represented Franklin.
"Franklin and Highlands market this same stretch of scenic highway for tourism and recreation purposes, and its very important for both communities to keep the roadsides of Highway 64 as beautiful as the natural assets that surround them,” said volunteer Matt Bateman. “So we decided to reach out to Jennifer Smathers at the Highlands Chamber Visitor Center to join forces."
Bateman, who is a member of Venture Local Franklin (VLF) and tour guide, believes it is important to build a mutual cooperation to take full ownership in maintaining the natural beauty of the roadside. "One of VLF's goals is to continue to reach out to other groups and entities within Franklin and beyond, so we can work together on moving Franklin forward in a positive direction," said Bateman.
The combined effort bagged litter from just above Cullasaja Falls, all the way up to the city limits of Highlands. More than 100 bags were filled by volunteers and hauled away by the U.S. Forest Service.
Main Street Coffee & Tea in downtown Franklin donated coffee for the volunteers of Franklin, while Bill and Sharon Van Horn donated bagels from Dills Creek Bagel Co. also of Franklin.
To finish the day, volunteers were treated to a cookout provided by the Highlands Chamber of Commerce at the Cliffside Lake Recreation Area.