11th Annual FRANKLIN FOLK FESTIVAL :: Saturday, July 19 from 9am - 4pm in Historic Downtown Franklin

- published 3/27 (Larry) - unpublished ?

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Outdoors

Volunteers are being sought to help relocate rivercane from the Western Carolina University area to a site near Cherokee as part of the university’s Rivercane Restoration Project.

The work to transplant the rivercane will take place in March and April as volunteers pitch in to move the plants from locations near WCU to a patch of ground at the new Cherokee Central School, said Adam Griffith, a staff member in WCU’s Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines.

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It’s been almost a year since the Town of Franklin was officially designated an Appalachian Trail Community by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy. A survey conducted last spring found that AT hikers passing through Franklin reported it was a “hiker-friendly” town.

According to Bill Van Horn, the survey also paints a very different picture of thru-hikers than what some residents and business owners may think of them. “Just because they’re a bit unkempt and need a shower, doesn’t mean they’re uneducated and don’t have a good income,” Van Horn said.

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White-nose syndrome, the disease that has killed hundreds of thousands of bats in the Eastern United States, has been discovered in a retired Avery County mine and in a cave at Grandfather Mountain State Park, marking the arrival of the disease in North Carolina.

“White-nose syndrome is confirmed in Virginia and Tennessee, so we expected we would be one of the next states to see the disease,” said Gabrielle Graeter, a biologist with the N.C. Wildlife Resources Commission. “This discovery marks the arrival of one of the most devastating threats to bat conservation in our time.”

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In time to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the national forest system in the East, The Wilderness Society recently appointed Jill Gottesman as outreach coordinator to increase conservation efforts in North Carolina.

Gottesman, former outreach director at Georgia ForestWatch, will be responsible for expanding community awareness and participation in the region for legislative protection of national forests in North Carolina.

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published: 10/18/2013
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