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Ballfields will shift to accomodate possible gravesite.

When Macon County commissioners voted to move forward on the Parker Meadows Property, they were well aware of the potential for setbacks. Acknowledging such potential, commissioners made the decision to have an archaeologist onsite during the grading phase of the project to watch for any possible remains in the area due to the project site’s location near a creek bed.

Macon County was home to members of the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) during early settlement, and before ever considering the possibility of constructing a state-of-the art facility at Parker Meadows, commissioners wanted to work with the Tribe to ensure that the project wouldn’t insult or interfere with the EBCI’s culture or heritage. Being sensitive to the EBCI’s rich tradition, when what appeared to be remains were found in what would be an outfield to one of the planned ballfields, Macon County officials took extra precautions to respect the Tribe’s heritage.

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Police chief Harrell takes advantage of photo op.

If you were strolling around the streets of Highlands last week, you may have been surprised to see the 39th president of the United States of America shopping in local boutiques and taking in the fresh mountain air.

President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, spent last week in Highlands for a little vacation while attending a fundraiser for Mercer University. Carter, who served as the governor of Georgia before serving as president of the United States from 1977 until 1981, has been a member of the Mercer University Board of Trustees since December 2012.

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Democratic candidate for N.C. Senate Jane Hipps was in town this week, meeting and greeting with constituents discussing issues important to North Carolinians including education, healthcare and fracking.

Pictured with Hipps are teachers and supporters, from left, Shirley Reynolds, Mildred Swafford, Evelyn Pangle, Hipps, Terri Hunter and Nancy Scott.

Photo by Betsey Gooder

The First United Methodist 27th annual bazaar will be held on Friday, July 25, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Saturday, July 26, from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m., in the fair building at the Wayne Proffitt Agricultural Center on 441S.

Proceeds from the bazaar go to support mission work. Some of the programs that have benefited from the annual fundraiser are CareNet, Mountain Intermediate School, Smoky Mountain Pregnancy Care Center and the Rathbun Center in Asheville among others. The fundraiser also supports youth mission trips.

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In recent months, the treatment of veterans around the country has made headlines, and not necessarily for the right reasons. Excessive wait times, and lack of access to medical care have taken the forefront when it comes to veterans services. Franklin has the only VA clinic west of Asheville and serves veterans that would typically have to travel more than an hour to receive care.

Despite national attention to veteran care lacking in the country, Macon County is working overtime to ensure that local veterans are offered and receive the highest standard of care possible.

 

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Water and sewer lines operating below capacity.

The Macon County Planning Board was recently tasked with looking at some requests made by the Town of Franklin and the Town of Highlands in regards to some infrastructure issues. At the urging of the county commissioners, the board members took on the issues at last Thursday's meeting.

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In the Republican runoff election for the Jackson County Sheriff primary election, candidate Curtis Lambert defeated Jimmy Hodgins. The North Carolina Board of Elections website reported that out of 15,243 eligible ballots in Jackson County, 239 or 1.57 percent were cast.

Lambert, who, at 424 votes received the most votes during the May primary election, once again beat out Hodgins in the runoff with 129 votes. Although Lambert received the majority of the votes in May, he did not procure the 40 percent of votes needed to secure his place on the November ballot. Hodgins, who garnered 376 votes in May, requested the run-off election that wrapped up Tuesday night.

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Visitors to downtown Franklin can take in authentic artifacts of the area inside the Macon County Historical Museum for hours if they so choose, but now they can also see what is believed to be an artifact handmade by the Cherokee indians right outside on the sidewalk.

The 3,500 pound trough arrived outside the historical museum at 5:30 a.m. by way of crane just last week.

“It was loaded on a flat bed truck with a crane and then unloaded right here by crane again,” said Robert Shook, Curator and director of the museum. “That's quite a stone that it's made from. I don't know how the Cherokee moved it.”

 

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Pricey Charlotte billboards deemed not cost effective.

At Monday's Town of Franklin Tourism Development Authority meeting, board members were given presentations by D'Anne Maddox of Premiere Marketing and Nelson Bumgarner from Allison Outdoor Advertising.

In the 2013-2014 fiscal year, the TDA began to move towards the use of a marketing strategy that would aim to bring in visitors from outside of Franklin as opposed to only focusing on local advertising.

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Otto native and Franklin High School graduate Barbara Seagle Pederson returned to Franklin Monday bringing along some special gifts for some local areas of interest – places that impacted her life and that have helped shape her into the successful woman she has become. She presented three American flags that were flown over the United States capitol.

Pederson has worked in Washington D.C. under the Honorable W. Byron Sorrell and the late Honorable James A. Belson, both of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. She was also the professional aide to the Honorable Warren E. Burger, Chief Justice of the U.S. and the Honorable William H. Rehnquist, also Chief Justice of the U.S.

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