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The “Gardening for Wildlife Series” comes to an end this Friday, Oct. 21, at 7 p.m. after six months of continuous presentations, lectures and field trips hosted by the Friends of the Rickman Store.

Brent Martin, Southeast Representative of The Wilderness Society, will close the series with the program ‘Hug a Bug! Love a Bee! Save a Tree!’ Martin will talk about the concept of putting a value on nature’s free services, such as intact forests, backyard trees, birds, bees, bats and the many insects that are not only wild pollinators but pest control agents as well.

Martin will explain how nature’s gifts are undervalued but vital to the health and sustainability of our planet; and most importantly, how we, as individuals, can work to protect natural systems in our own neighborhoods.


Bicyclists from near and far will take to the road for the 8th Annual Tour de Franklin “Halloween Hunard” charity bicycle ride on Sunday, Oct. 30, at 9 a.m., starting from Smoky Mountain Bicycles in Franklin, sponsor of the annual fall event.

With more than 100 cyclists participating in last year’s ride, the Hunard has become a popular fall event for cyclists of every level. Riders will enjoy the beauty of the rides, the festive Halloween atmosphere, and great food that comes with the postride meal.

Smoky Mountain Bicycles owners, Dave and Pam Forshee, have mapped out three great ride choices, each offering cyclists spectacular mountain scenery when fall colors are at their peak.


Art Pope accused of buying legislature for Republicans.

A recent article by Jane Mayer of The New Yorker entitled “State for Sale” issued a sharp critique of Raleigh’s Art Pope, chairman and CEO of Variety Wholesalers, for literally trying to buy the state’s legislature for the Republican Party.

Indirectly, Mayer took aim at North Carolina Senator Jim Davis and the state’s Republican Party as well, for utilizing “outside” cash to take control of the state’s General Assembly for the first time in over a century.

“The New Yorker is a liberal magazine and I think that is fairly obvious to anyone who reads it,” stated Sen. Jim Davis. “The author knew what she wanted to write before she started researching, and I think the article reflects that. She molded the facts together to fit her own agenda.”


State Employees’ Credit Union (SECU) has launched its Second Annual SECU Supports the Troops holiday campaign in all 238 SECU branch locations throughout North Carolina. The campaign goal is to provide 5,000 holiday gift boxes for North Carolina’s National Guard and Reservists deployed throughout the world.

The boxes will include items such as snacks and toiletries, and be accompanied by special thank you letters from local school children. Credit Union branches will have collection boxes for donations, along with a wish list of acceptable items.

In addition to items for the 10” x 10” x 5” gift boxes, SECU is also accepting monetary donations that will be used to assist with shipping costs associated with delivering items to the soldiers. The gift boxes will be shipped in early December.


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