This Week in the Swannanoa Valley

Israeli peace activist to talk at Highland Farms

Jeff Halper will speak in the assembly room at Givens Highland Farms at 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. After his address, questions from the audience will be solicited until 4:30 p.m. This event is sponsored by “Just Peace for Israel/Palestine.” All are welcome.

Jeff Halper has long led the struggle for human rights and a just peace in the Holy Land. During his mandatory military service, he refused to serve in the Palestinian territories occupied by Israel. Halper, nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize, has led the resistance to the Israeli policy of demolishing thousands of Palestinian homes, at times facing down bulldozers. He also organized Israelis and others to rebuild homes for Palestinians.

Born in Minnesota, Halper emigrated to Israel in 1973 and became a citizen. He has taught anthropology at the Haifa and Ben-Gurion universities. His academic research has focused on the modern history of Jerusalem, contemporary Israeli culture, and conflicts in the Middle East. Halper is the author of “An Israeli in Palestine: Resisting Dispossession, Redeeming Israel” and “War Against the People.”

Class of 1974 invites you to supper

Owen High School Class of 1974 will hold a class dinner at 2 p.m. Saturday, May 21 at The Yama Steakhouse & Sushi Bar out Patton Avenue in Regent Park, Asheville. After dinner, diners will motor back to the Dairy Bar in Black Mountain for homemade Coca Cola Cake and ice cream. All classmates are welcome.

It will also hold a dinner Saturday, June 11 at 4 p.m. at Straightaway Café, a favorite eatery of the class’s, on N.C. 9. Younger people and older classmates and staff from Charles D. Owen are always welcome.

Bridge group reports tight finishes

On April 26, there was a tight match with six tables at the Max Woodcock Bridge Club. Coming in first was the long-time pairing of Hubert and Liz Ream with a score of 58 percent. Second went to Ed Zawaki and Elizabeth Lovejoy at 57 percent; and third was George Ackerman and Wookie Payne at 55 percent. It is not often that the margin of victory is so slight, especially with 11 pairs playing 24 hands of bridge.

On May 3, Jackie McNese and Bill Anixter had a strong first place finish, scoring a 68 percent win. Myra and Peter Schoen fought a tight competition with Helen Kraus and Joan Tolley for second place. In the end, the Schoens prevailed with 58 percent; Joan and Helen were at 57 percent.

On May 10, the club had a lively match-up using a Howell rotation.

Coming in first with a strong showing against all the other teams were David Hirsch and Roger Fenna at 63 percent. Second was claimed by Linda Briggs and Walt Tolley at 54 percent (Linda had to work hard to carry the team with a partner she had not played with much). Third was a tie at 49 percent shared by Ed Zawaki and Elizabeth Lovejoy, and Hubert and Liz Ream.

Meeting explains upcoming CNA classes

The next informational meeting about certified nursing assistant classes at Black Mountain Neuro-Medical Treatment Center will be in the G-2 training room at the center at 6 p.m. Tuesday, May 24. The meeting for prospective students, the first step in getting into the six-week CNA class, will explain what the process includes to participate in the class. The cost of the class is $178, to be paid first day of class, which is June 13. The cost for the state test $101, to be paid last day of class. For more, contact 259-6766 or

Bike ‘rodeo’ explains rules of the road

The Friends of Black Mountain Library will host a bicycle safety event from 9:30-11:30 a.m. Saturday, May 21 in the back parking lot of Foam, Fabric & Home Decor, 304 Black Mountain Ave., Black Mountain. Kids 5-16 with the parents are invited to the bike rodeo designed to educate new and experienced cyclist about bike safety. It’s free. Bring your helmet and bike. Bikes will be inspected for safety by Epic Cycles. For more, email

Montreat book club discusses “Orphan Train”

The Montreat Community Book Club will meet at 3 p.m. Tuesday, May 24 at L. Nelson Bell Library at Montreat College. The book to be reviewed is “Orphan Train” by Christina Baker Kline. Kay Salmon will be the discussion leader. Everyone is welcome to attend.

Safety Saturday showcases area emergency services

The town of Black Mountain and Ingles Markets will put on its third annual Safety Saturday from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, May 21 at the Ingles parking lot on N.C. 9 in Black Mountain. Featuring police, fire and emergency medical services, the afternoon will be fun and educational for all ages.


Give blood at the Black Mountain Fire Department

May is the American Red Cross’s Trauma Awareness Month. As is the case throughout the year, donors of all blood types are needed (every day, the Red Cross must collect about 14,000 blood donations to meet the needs of trauma patients and others with serious medical conditions).

There will be a blood drive from 10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m. Friday, May 27 at Black Mountain Fire Department, 106 Montreat Road. Schedule your appointment to give blood by downloading the free Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Arts Center to offer back classes

Clifford Shulman, director of Black Mountain Physical Therapy, will lead a series of three classes in June called Back Care Basics at the Black Mountain Center for the Arts from 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. June 1, 8 and 15. The classes will be based on Feldenkrais Awareness through Movement lessons, known for their capacity to restore mobility and improve function for people of all ages. During the classes, participants will learn ways to improve the care and health of their back to better support daily activities. The cost $45 for the series or $18 for a single class. To register or for more, contact the arts center located at 225 W. State St. at 669-0930.

Art by the Tracks seeks musicians

Art by the Tracks, an arts and crafts show June 4-5 by the old train depot in Black Mountain, is seeking musicians to play for free (lunch at Dark City Deli provided) during the show, held for the 19th year this year (a second one will happen Oct. 29). Musicians are needed for one- and two-hour time slots on a provided stage. All ages are welcome. Musicians can contact Dianna Ryel at

Ten Thousand Villages sale benefits town beautification

On Sunday, June 5, Ten Thousand Villages Montreat will hold a shopping benefit for the Black Mountain Beautification Committee. Fifteen percent of sales from 1-5 p.m. will be donated to the committee, which works to enhance the natural beauty of Black Mountain.

Art in Bloom tickets now on sale

Tickets are now on sale for the 10th anniversary of Art in Bloom, a flower-filled annual event June 9-11 at the Black Mountain Center for the Arts. This annual event includes a Gala Preview Party (June 9 at 6 p.m., $50) with catered buffet dinner featuring a gallery display of spectacular Ikebana and Western floral designs and a a two-day Cottage Garden Tour (June 10 -11 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., $20). Tickets are available at 669-0930 and

Learn more about military-related PTSD

The Vietnam Veterans of America North Carolina State Council is holding a program about military-related PTSD from 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, June 11 at Mission Health/AB Tech Conference Center, 340 Victoria Road, Asheville. The program for veterans, active duty personnel, their families and supporters will discuss what PTSD is, issues related to it (suicide, addiction, anger, guilt, etc.), its impact on families and other topics. There’s more at