Forstchen explores existential threat in new book, ’48 Hours’

636233624995630950-forstchen-pipe(Black Mountain News) Before the 2009 release of “One Second After,” which would go on to hold a spot on “The New York Times” Best Seller list for 12 weeks on its way to selling over a million copies, few people were aware of what life might look like in the aftermath of an electromagnetic pulse (EMP) attack.

Author and Montreat College history professor and faculty fellow William Forstchen painted a detailed portrait, set in his hometown of Black Mountain, depicting the struggles modern society would face moving forward in a world devoid of electricity.

In his newest novel, “48 Hours,” Forstchen examines humanity in the hours before an eminent extinction level event.

Read the full expose’ by Fred McCormick HERE>

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Western Carolina sets enrollment record thanks to discount tuition program

screen-shot-2019-02-11-at-11.59.09-am(Carolina Journal) Enrollment at Western Carolina University is at a record high now that a low-tuition plan for select University of North Carolina schools is in effect.

WCU’s enrollment has spiked to 11,028. That’s almost 800 students more than were enrolled this time last year. Republican lawmakers link the growth to N.C. Promise, a $500 per semester tuition plan for in-state students. The plan also dropped out-of-state tuition to $2,500 a semester.

N.C. Promise became law in 2016. The cut-rate tuition applies to Elizabeth City State University and UNC Pembroke, in addition to WCU. State legislators invested $51 million in the program. Their main goal was to improve enrollment at some of North Carolina’s Historically Black Colleges and Universities, although only ECSU chose to participate in NC Promise.

Read the full report by Kari Travis HERE>

Asheville’s Flatiron hotel project OK’d by Downtown Commission as local concerns linger

185c00ab-f87c-4d7b-99f7-9cc025fd2435-flatironbuilding_meeting_10092018_0075(Citizen-Times) Plans to redevelop Asheville’s historic Flatiron Building into an 80-room boutique hotel will move ahead after receiving approval this week from the city’s Downtown Commission, a green light that comes with a lengthy list of concerns about its potential impact on the community.

Much of the commission’s roughly three-hour meeting Friday centered on a proposed multimillion dollar renovation effort for the 93-year-old property at 20 Battery Park Ave. Charleston, South Carolina-based developer Philip Woollcott has offered a plan in conjunction with building owner Russell Thomas to convert it from primarily small business use to a hotel with two bars and a restaurant.

Woollcott, an Asheville native, said the proposal — which still requires City Council approval — is designed to preserve the aging structure while putting forth a business model to “provide stability for it to sustain itself for generations to come.”

Red the full report by Dillon Davis <HERE>

A look back… A look forward…

12-14-18 355Happy New Year everyone! 

I am so excited for 2019!!!! Each year, I give myself a battle cry phrase, a mantra if you will, to help define my actions. (I don’t do annual resolutions, but rather themes to underpin my actions.)

2016 was the year of my Phoenix rising. I was emerging from the back end of sweeping and humbling times in my life. I had gone from the top to the rock bottom, between 2013-2015 and I was ready to start climbing my way back up again. So I needed to remind myself daily of the story of the Phoenix. And it worked! I ended 2016 hopeful, energized and happy.

2017 was “Service”. Feeling the momentum out of 2016, I sought to redefine what I was doing with my life and my time. I wanted everything I touched to be of benefit to others. I knew what it was like to be alone, lost and confused so I wanted to bring hope and impact to other people’s needs.

For 2018, my personal call to action phrase was simply “Purpose!”. And what a year 2018 turned out to be. Wow. I tried to always focus on the purpose behind anything I did, to help guide my steps, last year and it worked. My life is so strongly aligned around service and purpose now, like never before. I’m so grateful. But that’s just the start. I needed to acknowledge the spokes of this wheel with a worthy follow up mantra, a challenge to myself to see these things through to the next level of impact.

My 2019 phrase for myself is…. “Dominate!” Because it is born out of purpose, service and humility, I feel like I’d be blowing smoke in the face of God if I didn’t do everything I could to increase the impact of the blessings I have received in my own life over the past few years. So, as we enter into a new year, my prayer for each and every one of you is that you find your call to action for the year and make it your guiding principle in everything you do.

#love – Matt

The Elder Pole

Matt-Mittan-Poles-BenBy Matt Mittan

I’ve had a lot of fishing poles over the years but there is one that has proven itself over the test of time. It’s got a couple of eyes on it that have been repaired with the old dental floss/nail polish trick. The handle padding is worn down to the nub. And there are more stretch marks on its core than… never mind, I won’t finish that sentence.

Here’s where the magic is….

Read the Full Column in Angler Magazine <HERE>

I have wings that have sprung free. Come fly with me.