western north carolina

Rick Fienberg / TravelQuest International / Wilderness Travel

Bernard Arghiere of the Astronomy Club of Asheville has been speaking at events all across Western North Carolina ahead of the total solar eclipse that will pass through the region on August 21st.  He says the most common question he gets is when should people take off their special eclipse glasses during the event to see it.

Rick Fienberg / TravelQuest International / Wilderness Travel

The total solar eclipse will be here in less than a week.  Thousands will watch the eclipse within the 'path of totality' in Western North Carolina.  Bernard Arghiere is with the Astronomy Club of Asheville.  He's been speaking to groups across the region ahead of the eclipse.  He says the question most commonly asked at those meetings - when is it safe to take your eclipse glasses off when watching the eclipse?

APD

UPDATE 9:50 a.m. Tuesday - Asheville police have arrested 38-year-old Michael Patrick Faulkner and charged him with simple assault for the incident that took place Sunday evening at a demonstration in Pack Square.  The Asheville native is charged with assaulting a WLOS television reporter during a Facebook live stream.  Earlier story below -

Matt Bush BPR

Around 100 people demonstrated in Pack Square Sunday night.  They were there to honor Heather Heyer, the counter protestor who was killed at a white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Andrews, NC

The Town of Andrews is among the smallest towns in all of Western North Carolina.   Thanks to it being the only town in the state to fall directly in the path of this month’s solar eclipse, its population is expected to grow exponentially. BPR News's Davin Eldridge attended its latest town board meeting to find out how everyone in Andrews is preparing for the event…

Mission Health announced Thursday it wants to continue accepting Blue Cross Blue Shield insurance, but only for those who receive it through the healthcare exchange set up through the Affordable Care Act.  But the insurer rejected Mission's offer, saying it's unfair to those who have Blue Cross Blue Shield through other means, such as their jobs.

Matt Bush BPR

The city of New Orleans earlier this year removed statues of Confederate president Jefferson Davis and General Robert E. Lee.  Asheville has its own monument to a Confederate leader – Zebulon Vance, who served as North Carolina’s governor during the Civil War and U.S. Senator during the post-war Reconstruction period.  The future of the prominent landmark in Pack Square - home to two other monuments honoring the Confederacy - is now under debate, as is the lack of equivalent commemoration of Asheville’s deep African-American history.

Author Steven Nash is well-versed on Zebulon Vance, and the post-Civil War period known as Reconstruction when Vance became a U.S. Senator and political powerhouse in North Carolina.  He wrote the book "Reconstruction's Ragged Edge: The Politics of Post-War Life in the Southern Mountains".

Asheville Anime Regional Convention

The fourth annual Asheville Anime Regional Convention brought in nearly 2,000 visitors - it's largest attendance ever, proving that there's no shortage of love or demand for Japanese animation, even in Western North Carolina.  BPR’s Davin Eldridge attended the event…

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina's Democratic attorney general is responding to budget cuts imposed by Republican lawmakers by laying off about 9 percent of his agency's attorneys and telling local prosecutors they'll have to take over more courtroom tasks.

Attorney General Josh Stein on Thursday described his response to legislators deciding in June to cut $10 million from his budget despite objections from police chiefs and district attorneys. Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper's office operations were also cut.

Asheville Buncombe County Christian Ministry

The Western North Carolina branch of a national program designed to connect veterans with social service programs is expanding.  NCServes - Western, which is a part of the national AmericaServes network, will connect veterans, active service members and their families to more than 40 agencies and service providers throughout the region.  NCServes - Western covers the following counties - Buncombe, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Transylvania, and Yancey.

North Carolina's largest health insurance company is pulling back on its requested price increase for coverage through the Affordable Care Act.

Phillip Price

With Waynesville Democrat Matt Coffay withdrawing from next year’s race for the Congressional seat in North Carolina’s eleventh district, the only challenger left for incumbent Republican Mark Meadows’s seat now is Nebo resident Phillip Price. BPR’s Davin Eldridge caught up with Price at a meet-and-greet in Highlands, where Price introduced himself to a non-partisan group of voters…

GreatAmericanEclipse.com

The solar eclipse is less than a month away.  Thousands will come to Western North Carolina to see it, but there is one scenario that could ruin everyone’s fun – what if it rains that day?

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