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RALEIGH — North Carolina will move into the second phase of its reopening strategy beginning at 5 p.m. on Friday, May 22, Governor Roy Cooper announced at press conference on May 20.

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RALEIGH — A federal judge issued an order on Saturday, May 16, that temporarily halts restrictions placed as part an executive order from NC Governor Roy Cooper that bans indoor religious congregations of more than 10 people and encourages worship meetings held with social distancing “outdoo…

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NEWLAND — The Avery County Board of Commissioners are in the process of finalizing the county’s fiscal year budget in conjunction with its various departments, including the Fire Association, Sheriff’s Office and school system.

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NEWLAND — Despite already having its 2020-2021 school calendar firmly in place, Avery County Schools must now approve a new calendar for the upcoming school year due to changes made by the North Carolina Legislature.

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NEWLAND — Avery High School seniors returned to the high school, or at least to the campus, to pick up yearbooks, be congratulated and have love and appreciation expressed to them by teachers and staff. The following are images from ACHS as the Class of 2020 hits the home stretch toward its …

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BANNER ELK — The community came out to show support for the staff and residents at Life Care of Banner Elk on Friday, May 15, as a parade of vehicles drove by the center to brighten the spirits of the nursing home residents.

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HIGH COUNTRY — Regional home sales declined in April, as both buyers and sellers coped with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Realtors remained at work throughout the month albeit under extraordinary conditions, according to the most recent sales figures recorded by the High Country Association…

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May is National Bike Month. Of course, millions of Americans enjoy biking, so there’s reason to celebrate. But even if you’re not much of a rider, you can apply some of the guidelines and lessons of bicycling to other areas of your life – such as investing.

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Never has it been so important to recognize our nurses for their intellectually complex and emotionally demanding work, and to enthusiastically applaud them as they perform their sacred duties in the era of COVID-19. We face new uncertainties each day, but our caregivers live with them in a …

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The Blue Ridge Partnership for Children has been awarded a $10,000 grant from The Community Foundation of Western North Carolina’s Emergency and Disaster Response Fund. This substantial award provided local child care staff financial stipends in recognition and appreciation for all they are …

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LINVILLE — Williams YMCA will be keeping Avery County moving for another week as it continues to keep its virtual race open to participants for the foreseeable future.

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With the onset of the global COVID-19 pandemic, spring sports teams across the nation were prohibited from completing their seasons at various levels, including local middle schools.

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The Williams YMCA was out in full force on Thursday, May 14, at the Parks and Recreation Pool Complex in Newland, as staff and volunteers helped distribute food provided by MANNA FoodBank to Avery County families. Pictured from left are Trey Oakley, Karen Fugate, Bonnie Clark, Aiden Hodges, …

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RALEIGH — With students out of school and families cooking more meals at home than usual, here are five kid-friendly blueberry recipes just in time for the start of N.C. blueberry season, which runs mid-May through mid-July.

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Avery High hosted a Sr. Skip-Through event on May 13, where students were honored by teachers and staff. For more information and photos, see Page 17.

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I am a very emotional person. I guess it can be said that I wear my heart on my sleeve. I’m very passionate. If I’m happy, my body will beam with happiness. If I’m sad, you can see it written on my face. It takes a lot to get me angry, but when I’m angry, it is evident. I also get my feeling…

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ASHEVILLE — Pisgah Legal Services will be providing a free, open hotline to Western North Carolinians from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, May 21, for those affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

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RALEIGH — A federal judge issued an order on Saturday, May 16, that temporarily halts restrictions placed as part an executive order from NC Governor Roy Cooper that bans indoor religious congregations of more than 10 people and encourages worship meetings held with social distancing "outdoo…

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RALEIGH — North Carolina health officials report there have been a total of 17,982 lab-confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state as of 11 a.m. Saturday, May 16, according to statistics posted from NCDHHS. The state also reports 652 virus-related deaths.

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LINVILLE — A legacy is not something one merely inherits. It is something one creates. The legacy of Avery County’s Dr. Bill Tate is certainly no exception. His legacy in our region is his own, and it is his gift to the people he has served as a physician for most of his life. While there ha…

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RALEIGH — According to new data released by the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, it is estimated that 11,637 people in NC have recovered from COVID-19 as of Monday, May 18.

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AVERY COUNTY — As North Carolina slowly loosens restrictions in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, a pair of local resorts have released their strategic reopening plans to once again welcome visitors.

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RALEIGH — North Carolina health officials report there have been a total of 15,950 lab-confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state as of 1 p.m. Wednesday, May 13, according to statistics posted from NCDHHS. The state also reports 597 virus-related deaths.

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RALEIGH — To assist N.C. Division of Motor Vehicle customers and partners in dealing with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic, a provision included in the COVID-19 bill signed into law May 4 by Gov. Roy Cooper grants a five-month extension of the expiration date on more than two dozen DMV…

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Marshal Huffman, worship leader at Plumtree Presbyterian Church, sings “How Great Thou Art” during the National Day of Prayer on Thursday, May 9. As part of the service, which was held at the Town Square in Newland, civic and religious leaders met to pray for the different sectors of the nat…

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During your retirement, you will likely need to withdraw from your investment portfolio to help pay for your living expenses. So, naturally, you’d rather not see the value of that portfolio decline. Yet, if you spend two or three decades in retirement, you might experience several steep mark…

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NEWLAND — Feeding Avery Families is looking to get its next food pantry project off the ground by building its next site in Crossnore, but the nonprofit is still waiting to secure a location.

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NEWLAND — The town of Newland held its monthly meeting on Tuesday, May 5, in which the alderman discussed its plans to celebrate high school seniors by hanging banners throughout town, as well as decided upon a tentative date for Fourth of July festivities.

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RALEIGH — More information about the people applying for unemployment insurance benefits in North Carolina in March was published recently by the North Carolina Department of Commerce. The new data regarding claims for benefits include details about the applicants’ demographics, the industri…

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NEWLAND — Similar to years past, Avery County Schools will be providing meals to students throughout the summer months, but due to current public health restrictions the system’s plans have changed slightly and new partners are becoming involved to offer help.

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NEWLAND — Avery County still remains the only county in North Carolina without a confirmed positive case of COVID-19, but that narrative could change after the Toe River Health District is finished receiving the results of the approximately 280 tests it conducted during drive-through testing…

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BANNER ELK — During the Town of Banner Elk’s monthly meeting on Monday, May 11, board members recognized the International Ride of Silence, which will be commemorated at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, May 20, in Banner Elk.

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NEWLAND — It may not be the end to a 30-year career that Avery Middle School Principal Ruth Shirley expected, but once she officially retires from Avery County Schools in June, Shirley will be certain of one thing: she will be back in one capacity or another to continue the education of chil…

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BANNER ELK — On Wednesday, May 20, Banner Elk will host its 11th edition of the Ride of Silence. The Ride of Silence was started in 2003 in Texas as a way to honor a friend that was lost while riding their bike.

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The last Supermoon of 2020 hangs over the Blue Ridge Parkway on Thursday, May 7. A supermoon is an astronomical event that occurs when the moon is at its fullest phase and is at its closest point to the Earth on its orbit, according to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. The n…