More of what’s going around:

-Downtown Books & News, the younger-sister store to Asheville’s Malaprop’s Bookstore/Café, will celebrate its 29th anniversary on Saturday, July 1, according to a news release. The store will mark the anniversary with a reception and the opening of an art exhibit featuring Emöke B’Racz, the store’s owner and founder, and members of the B’Racz family. The exhibit will run through July 31. The event is open to the public. The mixed media exhibit includes work by B’Racz her sister, Piri B’Racz Gibson, her brother-in-law (and Piri’s husband), Andrew Gibson, and her nephew (Piri’s and Andrew’s son), Gareth Jesse Gibson, according to the release.

-There are more than 500 short-term rentals in Asheville operating illegally, according to a report to Asheville City Council on Tuesday. That was the upshot of a quarterly report delivered by Chris Collins, a planning and development manager with the city. City Council has asked for the reports to follow up action in recent years to set new regulations for homestays and short-term rentals and enforce those regulations.

-Former Buncombe County Manager Bill McElrath has died. McElrath was a mentor to current County Manager Wanda Greene, who is retiring this month.

-CASE Consultants International and its partners are pleased to announce a conference entitled Game-Changing Resilient Infrastructure that is scheduled for Thursday June 22, at The Collider facility in downtown Asheville, located at 1 Haywood St., on the top floor of the Wells Fargo building, according to a press release. The program begins at 8:15 a.m., is open to the public and will highlight green infrastructure projects that include New York City’s High Line, the City of Asheville’s green infrastructure program, New Belgium Brewery’s green site design, and North Carolina’s third green street project. More:

The conference keynote speaker will focus on NYC’s High Line, a 1.5 mile long urban park that receives five million visitors a year and is considered one of the most important public infrastructure projects constructed in the US in recent decades. Emma Bloomfield, Director of the High Line Network, will describe how the High Line project was conceived and implemented, and how Friends of the High Line is sharing lessons learned with an emerging group of infrastructure reuse projects around the country.

In addition to Ms. Bloomfield, other featured speakers and their topics are:

· Tim Owen, Chief, Information Services, NOAA/NESDIS/National Centers for Environmental Information, will describe the coming climate and its implications for national infrastructure.

· Fayetteville, NC City Engineer Giselle Rodriguez will describe the challenges and opportunities of developing green infrastructure through her experiences in implementing one of North Carolina’s first “green streets”.

· Asheville Deputy City Manager Cathy Ball, will discuss the City of Asheville’s robust green infrastructure program.

· Dena Chandler, Environmental Designer with the design firm Equinox and Sarah Fraser from New Belgium Brewery’s Office of Sustainability will describe New Belgium’s green infrastructure from conception to implementation and discuss how it reflects the company’s corporate mission.

-A grant from the Madison County Tourism Development Authority will support an upcoming exhibition at Mars Hill University’s Rural Heritage Museum, according to a press release. More:

The museum will display “The Civil War in the Southern Highlands: A Human Perspective” from August 19, 2017, through March 4, 2018. Museum director Les Reker says the $15,000 grant will help the museum offer an important cultural experience to visitors and residents of the county: “We are extremely grateful for the vision and generosity of the Madison County Tourism and Development Authority, as well as to the hotels, motels, and B&Bs, for their continued support of our mission.”

The exhibit uses original letters and newly discovered documents to detail the personal struggles of the people living in Madison County and the surrounding Southern Appalachian region during the mid-19th century. Exhibition items include an introductory overview film, two dozen narrative panels, dozens of original photographs, and many authentic objects from the Civil War period.

Among those objects are:
– a wedding dress
– a military jacket
– Confederate currency
– flags
– swords
– ammunition
– a McClellan cavalry saddle

One Comment

  1. The lack of action in this city is mind boggling. We have a manager who apparently tracks illegal activity, produces a report and briefs council.

    Of the 3 choices,

    (1) Don’t spend $ compiling data you don’t act on
    (2) Act on the data you collect
    (3) Collect and don’t act,

    we, of course, do number 3. Just silly.

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