It certainly has been a strange transition for high school football practice this year, going from heat advisories in August to winter storm warnings in February.

My insides have been in knots since I heard Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama, on Jan. 6, say that today is the day “we kick ass and take names.” His audience included a significant number of hate groups, and not long after, these groups assaulted the U.S. Capitol. (https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/1…

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An article about Harmon School in the northern edge of Wilkes County being named to the National Register of Historic Places and a related “Viewpoints” column, both in the Feb. 3 issue, prompted an interesting phone call.

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In 1919, residents of the Sheets Gap area on the crest of the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Wilkes County petitioned the Wilkes County Board of Education for a new school building.

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Although it fell one win short of making the 2A state finals, the West Wilkes volleyball team has many reasons to hold its head high.

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As your local health director, I would like to share the latest regarding COVID-19 vaccine in Wilkes County.

There’s very few things more frustrating than your mode of transportation breaking down when you’re on your way to a destination.

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This week’s opening of a Samaritan’s Purse field hospital in Lenoir to help Caldwell UNC Health Care (Caldwell Memorial Hospital) and hospitals in Boone, Hickory and Morganton handle COVID-19-related patient overflow was sobering news.

The year 2020 is one of the worst in recent memory, with a pandemic, economic crisis, months of social unrest and a divisive election. Over 300,000 Americans are dead from COVID-19, including nearly 70 in Wilkes County.

The vision that brothers B.B. and D.D. Dougherty had when they created what now is Appalachian State University has been fulfilled by people like Etta Lee Triplett Idol, who died Dec. 7 at age 98.

Baseball fans know that behind every great pitcher is a great catcher, and that’s indeed the case at West Wilkes High School with Riley Ledford and Braxton Church.

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Dr. Anthony Fauci stated in a Wall Street Journal podcast in April that in the interest of public health, it’s time to end the custom of shaking hands.

No stranger sight has greeted my return to covering prep sports than volleyball players wearing masks during indoor games and cross country runners wearing masks during outdoor warmups.

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A potential silver lining to the coronavirus pandemic is that when it’s over we might have greater appreciation of things we never imagined having to do without.

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My favorite local band, the Trailblazers, has a new record coming out Friday. If you’re a fan of great music that pushes boundaries, you should be as excited as I am for the release.

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In 2020, North Carolina Republicans and Democrats took their respective cases to the public. Each party asked voters to put them fully in charge of North Carolina government.

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A man described as Wilkes County’s most decorated soldier in World War II tragically died from injuries he received in a wreck on July 4, 1946, one year after he was discharged from the Army.

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I’m thinking of ordering a bumper sticker that says, “I survived the 2020 election.” We knew this election cycle was going to be ugly, but this one hit new lows — filled with half-truths and outright lies, conspiracy theories, nasty character smears and little substantive content.

RALEIGH — For 16 years, former state Rep. Cherie Berry has served as North Carolina’s labor commissioner. Now she’s retiring, and another Republican state representative, Josh Dobson of McDowell County, is running to replace her. 

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The most famous story — equal parts fact and legend, some say — to ever come out of Wilkes County is getting a cinematic reboot next year.

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Have you ever received a jury summons? If you haven’t, chances are you will if you live in Wilkes County long enough.

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Whether it was leading one of the nation’s largest poultry companies or the Wilkes County Republican Party, Blake Lovette was driven to make things better.

The sudden shift to cooler fall weather here recently has been good for jump starting two things in particular here in Wilkes County: leaf watching and deer hunting.

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RALEIGH- State government began fiscal 2020-21 with $1.5 billion in cash left over from the prior year, plus $1.8 billion more in rainy-day funds and other earmarked reserves. Since then, the state has collected some $1.5 billion more in general fund revenue than it has spent.

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Like the cooing of mourning doves in a river bottom and colorful chestnut oak acorns littering a forest floor, the smell of fermenting persimmons on the ground helps define autumn in western North Carolina.

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An advertising slogan from the 1960s used the phrase, “You never get a second chance to make a first impression.” Some credit Irish poet Oscar Wilde for the quote and others American actor Will Rogers; regardless of who said it first, Wilkes County does not need to worry about second chances.

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Earlier this month I covered a Wilkesboro Parks and Recreation Board meeting for a follow-up story on the possible expansion of pickleball courts at Cub Creek Park.

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When I was at Wofford College in the early 1980s, as is the case today, January was designated as a month of specialized study simply called, “interim.”

The 2020 election will be the strangest in our lifetimes. Coronavirus is a game-changer, but even before March North Carolina’s elections were shaping up to be different.

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After a nearly 10-year hiatus, the iconic Bluffs Coffee Shop, located at milepost 241 in Doughton Park on the Blue Ridge Parkway, recently re-opened. A soft opening was held the weekend of Aug. 14-16 and a grand opening was held Aug. 22.

There’s an easy step you can take that will go a long way toward ensuring everyone gets the representation and resources they deserve. By completing the 2020 census questionnaire -- online, over the phone, or by mail -- you can add your voice to the conversation and make yourself and your fa…

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This has been a year like no other  and it stands to reason that the November elections will be interesting, to say the least.

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Early, one-stop voting in Wilkes County is Oct. 15-31, from 8 a.m. to 7:30 p.m. on weekdays; from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturday, Oct. 17, and Saturday, Oct. 24; and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 31. Early, one-stop voting sites are the Wilkesboro Civic Center at 1241 School Street in W…

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On a North Carolina map with each county one of six shades of green to show levels of agricultural cash receipts in 2018, Wilkes is the only dark green county (at least $200 million, the highest) in the western quarter of the state.