Nantahala Outdoor Center

Lilly Knoepp

(Update 3/13/2020 at 3pm) 

Over the past week, tension cracks and a new escarpment have developed above the slide location along U.S. 19/74 in the Nantahala Gorge. The highway will be closed for three more weeks, according to NC DOT.

Courtesy of NOC

Aurelia Kennedy, co-founder of Nantahala Outdoor Center passed away on Saturday morning at her home in Wesser, NC. She was 84 years old. Kennedy moved to Swain County with her husband Peyton in 1973 to start the company with their friend Horace Holden. Holden passed away earlier this year. Now the company is a multimillion dollar business with locations in four states.

Doug Woodward

Southern Appalachian identity is complex and loosely defined.  But when it is, the portrayals are often unflattering. From whitewashing to stereotyping, the region is not all about poor hillbillies.     

Blue Ridge Public Radio followed the debate through film, literature, academia and music to learn more. In this installment we look at the echo of the film “Deliverance” across the region, from art and whitewater to the lasting stereotypes.