Ashvegas reader: President Obama sang ‘Happy Birthday’ to me; First Lady says she and president are ‘looking at houses’ around Asheville

Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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Here’s a great story from loyal reader Lisa Manning. Note the last tidbit about First Lady Michelle Obama saying that the Obamas are looking at houses in the area. Might the First Couple retire here one day?


I have a story for you about my dinner at Corner Kitchen last night…  

President Obama said Happy Birthday to me last night!  I also got to shake hands with Michelle Obama.

We arrived at Corner Kitchen in Biltmore Village for dinner and were met by Secret Service. They checked out our bags and used a metal detecting wand on us before we went into the restaurant. Shortly there after…, the Obamas with their motorcade and entourage showed up.

When Obama walked in, he said, “How is everyone doing?” My dad’s girlfriend says (about me), “It’s her birthday!”

Obama looks at me and says, “Is that right? How old are you… 28?”  

I laughed and said, “No… 33.”  

He laughs and says, “Well, Happy Birthday!”  

I say thanks, and then “We are so glad you guys are here!”  

Later, when they are leaving, I get a chance to talk to Michelle Obama. I tell her, “We are so glad you guys came back to Asheville to visit.”  

She says, “We love it here…. We’re even looking at houses.”

I encourage her to do so and say, “Asheville is a great place, and we love it here too.”


Jason Sandford

Jason Sandford is a reporter, writer, blogger and photographer interested in all things Asheville.

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  1. Orbit DVD April 26, 2010

    There was so much disinformation swirling around this visit that it’s hard for me to believe what was true and what was not.

  2. anon April 26, 2010

    So the Obama family is looking for houses here. Cecil got his hooks in fast didn’t he. Well, why not? He owns this town. Every top dog at Mission ends up doing business with that man. The Obama’s should do their homework concerning Cecil. He’s a crook.

  3. Asheville is my hometown. My post has nothing to do with this article. I figured it’d be a good noticeable spot to make to make one thing clear…

    "Ashvegas" has never been a reference used by the hometown population. These people of mine who I grew up with shaped the ville into the town it is today. There is a very strong bond among all who were born, raised and have begun to raise here. Hundreds of us within the city limits who established the foundation of the culture and continue to influence. We, along with the love of our own families created this "scene" in the town of Asheville which people flock to taste.

    So please, no it’s not Ashvegas…


  4. Marissa Kent-White April 25, 2010

    Hooray! I’d LOVE to have the Obamas call this "home!"

  5. Jack April 25, 2010

    Anyone remember the milepost on the Blue Ridge Parkway the 1st couple hiked on?


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