HAPPY EASTER!

- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Outdoors

A report released Aug. 1, by the Center for Rural Affairs, “Connect the Dots: Transmission and Rural Communities,” finds that expansion of the electric transmission grid is key to a clean energy future. And an improved grid is necessary to bring more wind energy online, creating rural jobs in both transmission and wind industries.

“The wind is always blowing somewhere,” said report author Johnathan Hladik, “an integrated and robust grid with new lines connecting high-wind areas to demand centers will enable wind power to meet an increasing share of our energy needs.” Hladik went on to explain that with adequate transmission, up to 40 percent of U.S. electricity demand can be met by wind without storage technology or reserve generation in excess of what is already in place for conventional sources such as coal, nuclear and natural gas.

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For more than 80 years, the Highlands Biological Station has sought to promote education and research with emphasis on the natural heritage of the Highlands Plateau, while preserving and celebrating the integrity of the “biological crown of the southern Appalachian Mountains.” Offerings at the Station include a Nature Center and a Botanical Garden as well as educational programs for young and old alike.

Nature Center

The Nature Center presents a variety of programs throughout the summer — like “Snakes of Highlands,” “Nature by Night,” and this Thursday’s, “Cherokee Storytelling.” The program begins at 6 p.m. Daily summer nature camps for kids are popular in the area and fill up fast.

The Nature Center is open Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. during the summer. The center is located at 930 Horse Cove, Highlands. For more information, call (828)526-2623.

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Tom and Elena Marsh, who live in Swiss Colony neighborhood, have met the requirements from the National Wildlife Federation to create a backyard certified wildlife habitat.

In order to become certified, a property must provide the four basic elements that all wildlife need: food, water, cover and places to raise young.

In addition to providing for wildlife, certified habitats conserve natural resources by reducing or eliminating the need for fertilizers, pesticides, and/or irrigation water.

Friends of Rickman Store are helping to implement the project with a series of “Gardening for Wildlife” programs. The next progam is set for Monday, Aug. 15, 5 to 7 p.m. “Meet Me At Spring Valley.”

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Last Thursday, the Tourism Development Commission of Macon County approved a number of grant requests for events scheduled for this fall.

Rob Gasbarro and Cory McCall, proprietors of the downtown Franklin outfitters store Outdoor 76, presented to the board their plans of holding the first annual Outdoor Athlon event.

Held at Cullasaja Park, just off of Fox Ridge Road in Franklin, the event promises to showcase outdoor activities and promote local entertainment. An outdoor triathlon, disc golf and ultimate Frisbee tournaments, outdoor sport clinics, hiking and kayaking demonstrations are among the many features at the event, which will resemble Asheville’s Mountain Sports Festival.

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published: 10/18/2013
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