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Outdoors

Don’t let mosquitoes keep you from enjoying your garden and outdoor parties. Look for environmentally sound ways to manage these pests in your yard.

Start by eliminating standing water in the yard. Buckets, old tires and clogged gutters and downspouts that hold water make the perfect breeding ground for mosquitoes.

Drain water that collects in these as well as kids’ toys, tarps and pool covers. Store these items in the garage or turn them over to keep them from becoming a mosquito breeding ground. Even small containers hold enough water for hundreds to thousands of mosquitoes to breed.

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Drought has returned to North Carolina for the first time in more than two years.

Lack of adequate rainfall and hot temperatures have thrust 20 North Carolina counties in portions of Central and Western North Carolina into a moderate drought, according to the state’s drought map, which is updated every Thursday. Fifty-one other counties in a swath from Eastern to Western North Carolina are abnormally dry, which means they are not experiencing drought but could be if dry conditions persist. The latest drought map can be found at www.ncdrought.org.

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Paddling enthusiasts have a new access location along the Little Tennessee River on Lake Emory. The site adds to a growing list of recreation areas and amenities offered by Duke Energy in the Western North Carolina region.

The Franklin Canoe Portage opened earlier this month and includes a canoe/kayak courtesy dock, a gravel parking lot and informational signage.

“We continue to focus on providing new amenities, enhancing access areas, and offering quality recreation facilities to residents and visitors,” said John Crutchfield, Duke Energy director, public safety & recreation strategy planning services.

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Five candidates from Lyndon B. Johnson Job Corps Civilian Conservation Center (LBJCCC) have been selected through a rigorous interviewing process with the Blue Ridge Ranger District of the Chattahoochee- Oconee National Forest to do an eight-week internship in Blairsville, Ga., with the Youth Conservation Corps in partnership with the Greening Youth Foundation which began June 1.

During this internship, students Maurice Cason, Tyshawn Campbell, Alfreda Phillips, Edson Vargas, and Lakendrick Johnson will gain exposure in wildlife fisheries and dispersed recreation management, trail maintenance, as well as fuel and timber management. The Youth Conservation Corps seeks to “inspire and engage volunteers and service participants to conserve our nation’s natural and cultural resources and ensure the sustainability of public lands legacy.”

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