News

Matt Bush BPR

Tens of thousands took in the solar eclipse in Western North Carolina.  In the path of totality to the west of Asheville, there was heavy cloud cover and even some rain.  Those who watched in the city however caught a break.

Courtesy of Romeo Durscher/NASA

The excitement has been building for weeks and weeks. On Monday, August 21st the solar eclipse will finally be here. It will darken the skies along a path from Oregon to South Carolina. It's the first eclipse that will be seen from coast to coast in 99 years. Millions will don special glasses or watch through pinhole projectors. Eclipse enthusiasts say totality never disappoints. Follow this live updating map tracking the position of the eclipse across the United States.  Beneath the map is a live blog from NPR journalists and others experiencing the eclipse across the U.S.

Dennis di Cicco / Sky & Telescope

Blue Ridge Public Radio is providing live video streams on total solar eclipse day from two locations within the path of totality.  The links are below!

From our tower on Wine Springs Bald near Franklin

From our tower on Rich Mountain near Brevard

Visitcherokeenc.com

With the Great American Eclipse right around the corner, the small towns of Western North Carolina set to fall directly in its path are  busy with last minute preparations before the big event. But for the town of Cherokee, the celestial spectacle is more than just another tourist event.  BPR’s Davin Eldridge met with organizers there to find out what’s in store for the reservation…

Matt Bush BPR

Asheville police arrested four people Friday morning for attempting to vandalize a Confederate marker in Pack Square downtown.  Police say protestors gathered around the Vance Monument before 8 a.m. Friday.  Several then attempted to damage the smaller marker in front of the monument that has a plaque with the likeness of Confederate General Robert E. Lee.  Arrested were 27-year-old Nicole Townsend, 45-year-old Amy Cantrell, 30-year-old Hillary Brown, and 34-year-old Adrienne Sigmon.  All are from Asheville and all four face charges of Damage to Real Property.

Davin Eldridge

With last year’s wildfires still fresh in the minds of many Western Carolinians, safety experts are telling mountain residents to be prepared in case it happens again. BPR News’s Davin Eldridge has more…

Last fall, more than 50,000 acres of land burned in Western North Carolina, including many homes.  So this year, efforts are underway to prevent that, with the help of the National Fire Protection Association’s Firewise USA program.

Rick Fienberg / TravelQuest International / Wilderness Travel

What did indigenous peoples think of eclipses?  How did they interpret and react to them?  Those are just a few of the topics that will be covered in a class at UNC-Asheville this fall inspired by Monday's total solar eclipse that will pass through Western North Carolina.  BPR's Matt Bush spoke with the two professors that will lead the class - Juan Sanchez-Martinez (modern languages & indigenous studies) and Britt Lundgren (physics).    

Michael Zeiler / GreatAmericanEclipse.com

Unless you're walking to your spot to watch Monday's total solar eclipse in Western North Carolina, you will be sitting in some kind of traffic.  Authorities are expecting heavy traffic just about everywhere in the region, compounded by the fact many of the rural roads in the path of totality are only two lanes.  Karen Chavez of the Asheville Citizen-Times has been reporting on all parts of the solar eclipse.  She joined BPR's Matt Bush in studio to discuss the advisories that will be in effect, and what authorities are urging motorists to do on Monday.

Jeremy Loeb/BPR

Democratic Representative Brian Turner of Buncombe County stopped by our studios in late July for a chat with BPR's Jeremy Loeb.  They covered his amendment to the Asheville districts bill, the overall redistricting process underway in the General Assembly now, a renewable energy bill signed by Governor Roy Cooper, and much more.  

The winner for Blue Ridge Public Radio's 2017 Ticket to Ride Raffle was drawn at 5:34, live on-air in the Blue Ridge Public Radio studios. The winner is Jim Oliver of Asheville! Congratulations! 

Jim will choose between an Audi A3 and a VW Golf Alltrack from Harmony motors. We'll post more pictures when he claims his prize. 

Thanks to everyone who entered the raffle. Only one person could win, but you are all winners to us. Raffle purchases support the programming you rely on everyday. 

Paul Deans / TravelQuest International

Where will you be watching the total solar eclipse this Monday?  Hotels, campgrounds, and many viewing along the path of totality in Western North Carolina and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park sold out long in advance of the eclipse.  But Karen Chavez of the Asheville Citizen-Times says don't worry if you haven't booked anything, there are still plenty of places you go to see the eclipse.

The grand prize drawing for Blue Ridge Public Radio's Ticket To Ride Summer Raffle is today! Tune in tonight at 5:30 to find out who will drive away in a new Audi A3 or VW Golf Alltrack from Harmony Motors. Last year's winner will join Helen Chickering and other BPR staff members in the studio to pull the lucky winner's name.

BPR News

The summer’s most anticipated celestial event is almost here.  Big crowds are expected here in Western North Carolina for Monday’s Great American Eclipse.  But as BPR’s Helen Chickering reports, people won’t be the only ones reacting to the dramatic changes in the sky

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