An Icy Assignment

Nov 29, 2016

The sound of chainsaws echoed through the AB Tech Asheville campus. It wasn’t a construction crew, but a culinary arts class, learning how to sculpt ice.  Fourteen students paired in teams of two were scattered across the porch of the Magnolia building. Instructor Chef John Hofland was overseeing the students as they sawed and chopped their way through blocks of ice.

Asheville Community Theatre presents the world premier of Tom Godleski's Snowbound, a "new mountain play with mountain music." The play includes Godleski's band, Buncombe Turnpike, and members of another popular bluegrass/old-time band, Sons of Ralph, onstage with the other 35 actors. 

Tom Godleski and director Mark Jones spoke with Dick Kowal about the play and its music.

Today is #GivingTuesday - a global day of coming together and giving back to our communities. Here at WCQS we're excited to be a part of this event, because coming together, making connections is what public radio is all about. We are bound by a commitment to life-long learning, civic responsibility, and a compassion for the world and its people. As you take time to support organizations that make a difference in your life and in your community today, consider a gift to WCQS.

Davin Eldridge

Despite some of the thickest smoke yet from Western North Carolina’s wildfires, the town of Franklin’s annual Christmas Parade went off as planned, bringing hundreds of onlookers to the downtown area. The parade proved to be a defiant show of solidarity among locals in the face of the wildfires, as well as a show of support for the hundreds of firefighters who took part in the event—proving that the spirit of the community would not be so easily broken as the holiday season kicks into high gear. “It’s a real testament to the community that, despite the environmental disasters, it can come f

Western Carolina University

Following a year of prolonged drought in Western North Carolina, with the sudden spark of wildfires throughout much of the mountain region, the one question on everyone's minds has been: 'when will they be extinguished?'. But for students and faculty at Western Carolina University's Natural Resources Department, the wildfires proved to be strangely fortunate. 


It’s Saturday morning, a small crew of staff and volunteers are in the lobby of historic Assembly Inn, the main lodging house at the Montreat Conference Center, just outside of Black Mountain. 

They’re preparing for tonight’s guests, who unlike most visitors, are not here to attend a retreat or a conference.  They are here to fight the wildfires.

Hunger Rises This Holiday Season In WNC

Nov 22, 2016
Matt Bush WCQS

As Thanksgiving dinners start to come together all across western North Carolina, the region’s largest food bank is asking residents to help those who won’t have enough to eat.  Hunger is on the rise this holiday season according to Manna Food Bank.

The Asheville Choral Society, under the direction of Melodie Galloway, performs its second annual Yuletide Candlelight concert at Asheville's Trinity Episcopal Church December 2nd at 7:30 and December 3rd at 4:30.  The Choral Society will be joined by string and brass players, and the Celebration Singers, a chorus for young people.

Melodie joined Dick Kowal to talk about the program and other ACS activities in the months ahead.

Courtesy of the Biltmore Estate

Thanksgiving is a busy time of year at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville.  And thanks to an archival cookbook, we also know a bit about what the Vanderbilts chose to do for their Thanksgiving meals, at least in 1904.  Lori Garst is Associate Curator at Biltmore Estate.  She sat down with WCQS's Jeremy Loeb to talk about it.

The town council of Weaverville unanimously passed a resolution Monday evening saying the town is 'welcoming and diverse community' where all citizens can live and work 'without fear of physical violence, threats, harassment or intimidation." 

UNC-Asheville is accepting applications until December 1st for the first Ramsey Library Community Author Award. Wiley Cash, writer-in-residence at UNC-A and author of A Land More Kind Than Home and This Dark Road to Mercy, talked with Dick Kowal about the award and its significance. 

Our gift to you - holiday programming  through New Years Day! Please check back frequently as we'll be adding to the list of specials throughout the season. 

Wednesday DECEMBER 7: 10 am

The perennial Christmas favorite from VocalEssence, one of the world’s premiere choral groups. An hour of traditional carols and new discoveries.

City of Asheville

Temperatures are expected to dip below freezing Saturday & Sunday night in Asheville and Buncombe County.  Therefore, a 'Code Purple' has been declared for homeless shelters this weekend.  Shelters will be open to the homeless during the day and other times when they would typically be closed.   Shelters offering 'Code Purple' services include  -

A-Hope Day Center

ASO "Rhapsody in Blue"

Nov 18, 2016

The Asheville Symphony performs the program "Rhapsody in Blue" Saturday evening at 8 in Thomas Wolfe Auditorium. The concert will feature George Gershwin's best known work with piano soloist Conrad Tao, as well as works by American composers Aaron Copland and David Diamond.

Dick Kowal talked with ASO music director Daniel Meyer and pianist Conrad Tao about the composers and their music.

Davin Eldridge

As wildfires continue to burn throughout Western North Carolina, firefighters in the far-western part of the state now have about 85 percent of them contained in Jackson, Macon, Swain and Clay Counties.

Factors like improved air quality, higher humidity and lower temperatures in recent days have all helped firefighters contain the blazes. But with no rain in the forecast until next weekend, they are still preparing for a long fight, according to Southern Region Incident Commander Kevin Harvell, of the North Carolina Forest Service.