Heritage & History-Rich Highlands, NC

An unlikely confluence of natural treasures, events, and quirky personalities created the endlessly surprising Highlands community that continues

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Reflecting on the Past 20 Years
Carpe Diem Farms

Though her attention is clearly focused on the busy year ahead, Sue takes a few moments to cast her gaze to the early days of this magazine and

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The Heart & Start of it

For Delaine and Steve Mehder, their differences have somehow led to an abiding complementary love that will not be denied.

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20 Years of Art

“To say that The Laurel Magazine is an instrumental influence to our arts community would be a huge understatement. They feature art on each

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Award-Winning Dining at Greystone Inn

The Greystone Inn’s Lakeside Dining Room has earned international honors with Opentable.com’s Diner’s Choice Award. To evaluate the wisdom

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Wine, Women & Song at Oak Restaurant

“A Jug of Wine, A Loaf of Bread and Thou” – somehow the 11th century’s Omar Khayyam predicted the vibrant spirit of Bear Shadow’s Wine,

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Get Your Fix
Sapphire, NC

The Fix Restaurant, Bar & Lounge, located at 3093 US 64 East in Sapphire, arrives in this quiet community as an exclamation point for food and

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It’s Brunch Time: Oak Steakhouse Highlands

The arrival of Brunch at Oak Steakhouse at Skyline Lodge is a cause for celebration. Reservations are a must – (828) 482-4720.

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Branching Out: The Art of Dave Ferrell

Dave Ferrell’s chainsaw wizardry draws magical figures from ordinary blocks of wood.

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Woman with an Ibis: Cover Artist, Mase Lucas

Take a closer look at the artistry and profound mystery embedded within our Mase Lucas covers.

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Garden Club Plant Sale
Highlands, NC

Just in time for Plateau Planting, the Highlands Mountain Garden Club’s beloved Annual Plant Sale returns to the Town Ball Field on Saturday,

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Marketplace Magic on Saturdays in Highlands

With Covid restrictions fading into the rearview mirror, Highlands Marketplace is a dazzling showcase for local farmers and artisans, Saturdays

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A River Runs Through it : Three River Fly Fly Fishing

The Three River Fly Fishing Festival, set for April 21-23, offers plenty of challenges for both veteran anglers and clever novices of all ages.

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Bear Shadow Music Festival: Highlands NC

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And Kentucky Makes 8: Cashiers Highlands Humane Society

Six very lucky dogs get a new leash on life thanks to the gentle ministrations of the Cashiers-Highlands Humane Society.

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Cover-Worthy Winters: Annual Cover Winter Photo Contest

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Daytime Experiences at Bear Shadow: Highlands NC

Bear Shadow, slated for April 29 through May 1, sets the tone for a busy Plateau Season with an unforgettable series of daytime experiences.

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The Laurel turns 20

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Our Mission : Excellent Health

Mission Community Primary Care at Highlands-Cashiers Hospital offers a variety of services to our area. Whether you choose to be seen in Highlands or in Cashiers, you will receive prompt and attentive care from one of their primary care providers. Bethany Applebome, PA, is one of those providers, and she sees patients in Cashiers.  Bethany studied at Duke University’s Physician …

That Something I Can Do

You really can’t tell how your kindness may ripple throughout the world. Certainly the twin communities of Highlands and Cashiers have thrived upon the ideas and deeds of a steadfast coterie of men and women. Consider the words of Dr. Edward Everett Hale: “I am only one, but still I am one.  I cannot do everything.  But I can do …

When Kannie Met the Preacher

Although John Roberts Zachary of Seneca, South Carolina, gave the speech at the first Zachary Family Reunion on August 28, 1909, another person actually wrote the speech. That was Kannie Zachary Marr, born 1856, the first-born child of Jonathan Zachary (son of Col. John A. Zachary and Sarah Roberts) and Eliza A. Jones. This Kannie, who had a younger relative …


Mink in the Mountains

No matter which side of the fashion fur fence you fall on (fur or against) mink, the animal, is an intriguing little beast. Mink live wild in the North Carolina mountains.  They are not as prevalent as populations in the coastal wetlands, but they are definitely part of our ecology.  Chances are you will never see one. They are small …

Pipevine Swallowtail

These common black butterflies are easily identified by the single C-shaped row of reddish-orange spots on the underside of the hindwing.  

Brown Thumbs Rejoice Highlands NC

Ahhh, winter. Days are short, nights are long, and we’re spending more time inside our winter cocoon. We’ve battened down the hatches, created warm and cozy spaces keeping our own confines, well…confined.     The air we breathe is filled with less oxygen and more carbon monoxide, formaldehyde, trichloroethylene and other toxic chemicals. In 1989, NASA and the ALCA (Association of …


Canvasbacks and Redheads

These two types of duck are similar in superficial ways but distinctly different upon close examination and study.   Both are North American species, although a few Canvasbacks, the largest American diving duck, have crossed the Atlantic and appeared in England.  The Canvasback − thya valisineria − owes its Latin name in part to a wild celery plant which is …

A Spoonful of Wow

What started out as an online search for homemade hot sauce has exploded into an obsession for Nathan Smith. He grows his own chilis and also purchases them from the Asheville Farmers Market since they’re difficult to find in grocery stores.  Dried chilis (found at Mexican groceries) can also be used after re-hydrating.  He makes several different sauces but shared …

Spring’s Spicy Crunch

Spicy and crunchy fresh radishes instantaneously remind us of Spring. Radish Salad brings within itself a light and happy feeling of the seasons changing and the sun shining a bit more. This salad is a simple one, yet in its simplicity, a beautiful flavor is revealed.  Most radish salads have a lot of other ingredients and radish is represented as …


A Fashionable Swirl at Old Edwards Inn

Old Edwards Inn and Spa will once again host its Release the Rosé Wine Dinner at The Farm at Old Edwards on Friday, April 14. It’s an evening of food, live music, wine, and camaraderie. Rosé is one of the most fashionable swirls to top a stem in today’s wine world, even for men.  Rosés have sashayed up to the …

Tastes Transcendent in Cashiers NC

There’s something deeply satisfying about breakfast at The Zookeeper’s Bistro. I’ve written before about my aversion to sitting down for breakfast – a recognition that I’m reluctant to haul myself out of bed 20 minutes early to make time for this most basic of rituals. How embarrassing is that for an adult to admit to?  And of course, with that admission …

Run. Cycle. SOAR!

The 14th Annual Special Operations Adventure Race (SOAR) benefiting the Special Operations Warrior Foundation (SOWF) will be held on June 13, 2015. This annual event continues to draw outdoor enthusiasts from across the southeast who come to the mountains to challenge themselves and raise money for a great cause. Since its inception the Highlands Annual SOAR race has raised hundreds …