The Nth Power Rocks Columbus For Abundance Tour Opener [Videos/Review]

first_imgThe Nth Power came into rainy Columbus last night for an evening of funk and soul that dripped from the ceiling of the local favorite Woodland’s Tavern.Fool’s Paradise Announces Artist-Led Excursions With Members of Lettuce And Break ScienceThe night was filled to the brim with songs on the the band’s 2015 release Abundance, the name of their current tour, and those in attendance loved every second of it. Starting the night like the album, bassist (and groove/funk master) Nate Edgar laid down the groove from “Intro” leading into “Only You,” showcasing some funky synth work from keyboardist Courtney “Jay-Mel” Smith.The band shifted gears at bit moving into “Waiting > Holy Rain” a sound which signer/guitarist Nick Cassarino noted evolved from hip hop roots. For those who’ve followed the band prior to their latest release, the crowd was treated to “Spirits” featured on their 2014 release Basic Minimum Skills Test and the 2013 single-released “Thank You”. The powerful connection of drummer Nikki Glaspie and Edgar could not be ignored during this stretch of music. Cassarino would then show off his guitar shredding ability and “man the fuck up” with “Walk on Water” for one of the quintet’s highest points of the evening.The Nth Power To Play Earth Wind & Fire Tribute With Members Of Dead & Co, TTB And More During Jazz FestRiding that high tide, the band would follow the next 20+ minutes with arguably their most popular tune “Only Love” with a percussion-heavy back end that would lead into “Wolosodon” featuring the talents of West African master percussionist Weedie Braimah for an electrically charged conga solo.The band would continue to show off each of the members strengths as grooves mixed with vibrant solos playing through “Home”, “Soul Survivor”, ending the set with “Right Now,” all featured on the latest album release. The crowd demanded more and the group heard them, treating them to an encore performance covering The Beatles “I Want You (She’s So Heavy)”.For those who love The Nth Power’s sounds, don’t miss them at the inaugural Fool’s Paradise event. Hosted by Lettuce, and featuring performances from Vulfpeck, Chris Robinson’s Soul Revue, GRiZ, Goldfish, Break Science and more, it all goes down from April 1-2 in. St. Augustine, FL. This is sure to be quite the fun festival, so don’t miss out! Tickets are available here.Setlist: The Nth Power at Woodland’s Tavern, Columbus, OH – 3/11/16Set: Intro, Only You, Waiting > Holy Rain, Spirits, Thank You, H2O, Only Love > Wolosodon, Home, Soul Survivor, Right Now,Encore: I Want You (She’s so Heavy)last_img read more

The War On Drugs Wins Over The Hollywood Bowl [Videos]

first_imgWhen you think of “guitar music,” The War on Drugs probably isn’t what comes to mind. After all, frontman Adam Granduciel doesn’t wail away on his Fenders and Gibsons like master jamsmen John Mayer and Trey Anastasio, much less shred his axe like Metallica’s Kirk Hammett.What Graduciel does do, though, is captivate audiences with rich, ASMR-inducing tones in between his hapless-but-hopeful lyrics, sung like all the Traveling Wilburys rolled into one.To that end, the War on Drugs was on top of its game during a recent late-summer night at the Hollywood Bowl. To close out the U.S. leg of its tour in support of the Grammy-winning album A Deeper Understanding, the band busted out a scintillating 16-song set simmering with familiar riffs, strung together as only Granduciel can. Just as his rich soundscapes have helped to turn his band from an obscure Philadelphia-based outfit into a Grammy-winning act, they transformed the unusually thick air at the Hollywood Bowl into his personal palette and canvas.Following a pitch-perfect (and genre-appropriate) warmup set from Alvvays, the War on Drugs emerged with a pair of songs from 2011’s Slave Ambient (“Brothers” and “Baby Missiles”) before diving into a string of more recent hits, including “Pain,” “An Ocean in Between the Waves” and “Strangest Thing.”The rest of the set was comprised entirely of new songs and cuts from 2014’s Lost in the Dream, save for “Arms Like Boulders” from 2008’s Wagonwheel Blues and a cover of Warren Zevon’s “Accidentally Like a Martyr” to open the encore. The crowd, while not quite a sellout, nonetheless soaked up Granduciel’s ethereal riffs on “Red Eyes” and “Knocked Down,” “Under the Pressure” and “Thinking of a Place,” and everything in between. The emotional ‘80s inflections of “In Chains,” “Disappearing” and “Burning” managed to move molecules, to the point that at least one observer pondered the possibility of a total chemical transformation just from having been in the building.To be sure, Granduciel wasn’t short on talented support. David Hartley and Charlie Hall, on bass and drums respectively, built and maintained the rhythmic foundations behind the band’s melodic romps. Robbie Bennett and Anthony LaMarca connected the lead and the beat with a steady blend of guitar and keyboard. Jon Natchez stole the show with his saxophone on multiple occasions.But rarely, if ever, could the War on Drugs’ other players have won out over Granduciel. That’s no disrespect to them, but rather a reflection of the band leader’s somewhat understated powers of musical persuasion. With his direction, the band created a sound, a vibe, that was more atmospheric than the actual (and unusually heavy) atmosphere hovering over the Hollywood Hills.The group got a significant boost in that department from a lighting setup that, like the War on Drugs’ music, was far more capable and complex than it may have seemed at first blush. Multiple rows of lights combined to form mirrored parabolas that seemed to at once be doing battle and dancing beautifully above the band. Those theatrics blended perfectly with the venue’s own space-age arrangement beneath the unmistakable rows of the very Hollywood Bowl that encircles the stage.The War on Drugs’ date at the Bowl was hardly its first in Southern California on its latest sprawling tour. The band began promoting its latest LP with appearances at Apogee Studios in Santa Monica and on Jimmy Kimmel Live! in Hollywood in August 2017, ramped up its efforts at the Greek Theatre in L.A. last October, and kicked it into high gear for back-to-back weekends at Coachella this past April (along with the now-customary regional support dates in between) and the KROQ Weenie Roast in Carson in May. It’s understandable, then, that they may have had difficulty filling the 17,500 seats that make up the Hollywood Bowl.Those who turned out, though, were treated to transcendent set—enough so to suggest that, while the political “War on Drugs” may be continuing anew, at least one War on Drugs has already been won.“An Ocean Between Waves”“In Reverse”“Eyes to the Wind”“Burning”“Disappearing”[All Videos: Brian James]last_img read more

Achieve Efficient Energy Management through Digitization

first_imgThe components of the Dell EMC infrastructure include the Dell Edge Gateway for the intelligent capture of all relevant measurement data from the production plant, and the compute power of Dell EMC PowerEdge Server with Intel® Xeon® processors, in combination with Dell EMC Storage and Networking products. To deploy infrastructure technology quickly when needed, Dell EMC offers Ready Solutions that are optimized for SAP HANA. The SAP-certified and pre-configured Dell Edge Gateway connects varied wired and wireless devices and systems, aggregates and analyzes the input, and forwards it to the SAP HANA platform for further analysis. Because the gateway sits close to the devices and sensors, it sends only meaningful data to the cloud or control center, saving expensive bandwidth.INTENSE AG’s Energy Efficiency Solution (ESS) provides the following capabilities:Capture, manage, evaluate and display all energy-specific measurement data, influencing factors, and relevant comparison values ​​from SAP and from external systemsDerivation of the energy baseline (EnB) as well as relevant energy performance indicators (EnPi’s), graphical visualization, location comparisons and forecasts as well as alarm functionsIdentification and management of potential options for energy efficiency and the introduction of appropriate measuresIn addition, ESS is able to determine parameters for optimizing energy consumption based on historical data. This results in the following advantages for an organization:Identification of energy optimization options in plants and production processesReduction of energy consumption and related energy costsCompliance with government requirements for energy efficiencyIncreased production efficiency on the basis of dependencies between production and energy useOverall, the energy efficiency solution approach from Dell EMC and INTENSE leveraging SAP HANA covers a broad range of industries. These include not only manufacturing companies, but also health care facilities, universities and operators of large building complexes.Conclusion The efficient energy supply of the future is closely linked to digitization. It is the basis of an intelligent energy management system. The goal is to optimize and to sustainably reduce energy consumption for consumers. This results in economic benefits, especially for the manufacturing sector. Digitization using IoT technologies enables them, for example, to adapt manufacturing power to the energy supply capacity and thus to save costs.The solution approach from Dell EMC and INTENSE plays a key role here. It fulfills all prerequisites for a viable and efficient energy supply for all organizations.To learn more about the Energy Efficiency Solution, read the white paper and visit the Dell EMC booth at the SAP Leonardo LIVE on 11 and 12 July 2017 in Frankfurt or get in contact directly with our experts from the Dell EMC Global SAP Center of Excellence. Globally, organizations have set themselves the goal of reducing their energy consumption and CO2 emissions. In 2010, for example, the European Commission has defined regulations and guidelines for an expanded, environmentally friendly energy strategy. An essential part is efficient energy management, in which digitization is the key to success.Limited reserves of fossil fuels such as coal, natural gas and oil, unpredictable risks of nuclear energy, environmental factors and steadily rising energy costs are drivers of a long decided energy transition. Current and future strategies are therefore primarily based on the use of renewable energies as well as resource-conserving concepts of energy use.For the energy producers in Germany, this means primarily to switch to solar and wind energy, but also to bioenergy, geothermal energy and hydroelectric power. For energy consumers, especially in the manufacturing sector, the optimization of energy use must be achieved by means of effective energy management with tailored IT solutions.Energy supply for manufacturingLucrative subsidy programs, such as from the German government, are leading to an increasing acceptance of renewable energies not just in private households. In addition to municipalities, the manufacturing sector is increasingly using renewable energies for its production process. But office buildings, hospitals and universities also increasingly rely on resource-conserving energy. In addition, the public pressure of consumers in terms of ecological footprint and legal incentives contributes significantly to the trend reversal.Thus, a first goal has already been achieved today: In Germany, electricity generation from renewable energies is of great importance, also for companies. Well-known examples are Deutsche Bahn and Posteo. The share of renewable energies in the total electricity generation in Germany is now almost one third. The goal is that this share will increase to about fifty percent by 2025.Challenges put to the testA major challenge of the energy supply for production plants is to be able to control and optimize their energy requirements at any time. In addition to cost savings, this is primarily a result of government regulations and standards, such as the energy efficiency guidelines in the European Union. Not only in Germany, but worldwide, organizations are working on innovative solutions to meet this challenge and thus optimize the use of energy.In this respect, the energy suppliers are also required to adapt and integrate existing energy supply systems to extreme or unforeseen changes in energy production.The limited storage capacity of energy media under technological and economic constraints, in combination with the high fluctuation of regenerative energy generation systems, considering stable distribution systems and limited predictability of the current and future sales situation, are factors in creating highly complex technological requirements for producers and network operators.Environmental awareness and manufacturing successThe use of renewable energies in an organization shows its positive environmental awareness. Efficient energy use and associated cost savings contribute to its economic success. Deviations of the expected energy input are an indicator of potential for optimization in the production process. This is the technical challenge – to find a comprehensive solution that every organization can use for its own purpose:Energy consideration of individual production plants taking relevant influencing factors into accountOrganization-wide comparison and cumulative approach optionsComplete integration of energy management into production, material management, forecast, purchasing, etc.Flexible adaptability due to changed order and utilization conditions.It is important to manage the complexity of energy production, consumption, storage and distribution in such a way that the energy supply is robust and the risk of a damage is minimized. It is also important that the solution utilized reacts in real time, to process the relevant data in a user-friendly and meaningful way and serve as the basis for production and business decisions.Energy management through digitization and Internet of ThingsTo address these challenges, Dell EMC and INTENSE AG are collaborating on an end-to-end solution approach for organizations based on:Energy Efficiency Solution (ESS) software suite from INTENSE AG,The analytical capabilities of the SAP HANA® platform with complete integration into an organization’s ERP, andA powerful Dell EMC infrastructure for capturing, storing and analyzing the data.last_img read more

Historic Pulp Mill covered bridge to close January 3 for extensive rehabilitation

first_imgThe Pulp Mill covered bridge connecting the Towns of Middlebury and Weybridge is scheduled to be closed for rehabilitation starting January 3, 2012 and will remain closed through November 16, 2012. This span that crosses Otter Creek was built in 1820. The pedestrian bridge adjacent to the Pulp Mill bridge is scheduled to remain open for the majority of the construction period but will experience occasional weekday closures to protect the public while crane work is being done in close proximity to the pedestrian bridge. Rehabilitation of the Pulp Mill Covered Bridge consists of replacing the deteriorated bridge members, installation of new siding and metal roof, substructure repairs, installation of approach railing and reconstruction of roadway approaches. The work will be done by Alpine Construction, LLC of Schuylerville, New York at a cost of $1,638,629.last_img read more

Construction begins on first utility-scale wind project in West Africa

first_imgConstruction begins on first utility-scale wind project in West Africa FacebookTwitterLinkedInEmailPrint分享CNBC:Ground has been broken on the development of West Africa’s “first utility-scale wind power project”, located in Senegal. The 158.7 megawatt (MW) Parc Eolien Taiba N’Diaye, or PETN, is set to be completed in 2020, according to renewable energy firm Lekela.The 46-turbine facility will use turbines from Danish company Vestas and will generate more than 450,000 megawatt hours of energy annually, boosting Senegal’s generation capacity by approximately 15 percent, Lekela said. The project will be built near the community of Taiba N’Diaye.“Senegal has been quick to embrace the idea and the advantages of renewable energy,” Chris Antonopoulos, Lekela’s CEO, said in a statement towards the end of last week.The International Renewable Energy Agency has described Africa as being rich in renewable sources of energy such as the wind and sun.Kenya, for example, is home to the Lake Turkana Wind Power project, which is made up of 365 wind turbines. The project has a total installed capacity of 310 MW and has been producing and sending electricity to Kenya’s national grid since September.More: Construction underway on West Africa’s ‘first utility scale wind farm’last_img read more

Best of the Blue Ridge 2018

first_imgWhat’s the best bike shop in the Blue Ridge? Who are the top raft guides and most inspiring thru-hikers? Where is the most scenic waterfall? What are the toughest events in the region? And where can you get the best local beer and pizza after a day of adventure? Thousands of readers from across the region decided the winners of our seventh annual Best of the Blue Ridge Awards, which include 75 categories, from burgers to biking trails.Hiking TrailGreenbrier River TrailCaldwell—Cass, W.Va.Paralleling the Greenbrier River for nearly 78 miles, this easily accessible rail-trail provides an intimate look at both the history and natural beauty of West Virginia.FINALISTSCascade Falls, Va.Art Loeb Trail, N.C.A.T. SectionMcAfee KnobCatawba, Va.The iconic rock outcropping along the A.T. at McAfee Knob is engulfed by near-360-degree views of rolling Blue Ridge Mountains. Expect to work hard for those vistas—the trail climbs a butt-busting 1,700 feet in just 4.4 miles.FINALISTSRoan Mountains, Tenn.Dragon’s Tooth, Va.Swimming HoleBlue Bend Recreation AreaMonongahela, W.Va.With three overlooks into the Monongahela National Forest and a cozy overnight shelter, the trail is a gem in its own right, never mind the brisk mountain-fed swimming hole.FINALISTSDevil’s Bathtub, Va.Skinny Dip Falls, N.C.Running TrailMill MountainRoanoke, Va.With over 10 miles of trails just minutes from downtown, Mill Mountain Park makes it easy for Roanoke residents and visitors to squeeze in a quick trail run before, after, or even during work hours. Climbing to the Roanoke Star at 1,847 feet justifies a post-run beverage.FINALISTSJackrabbit Trail, N.C.Blue Ridge School Trails, Va.Paddling RiverNew RiverNorth Carolina—West VirginiaDesignated a Wild and Scenic River in 1976, the 320-mile long river starts in North Carolina’s High Country. After long stretches of flatwater in Virginia, it becomes world-class whitewater in West Virginia.FINALISTSNantahala River, N.C.James River, Va.Climbing CragNew River GorgeFayetteville, W.Va.The sheer quantity of bullet-hard sandstone in the New River Gorge makes the area one of the best sport and traditional rock climbing destinations in the world. Many climbers of international renown have journeyed to this quiet pocket of southern West Virginia to test their mettle on the area’s (oft-sandbagged) 1,400+ established routes and boulder problems.FINALISTSSeneca Rocks, W.Va.Looking Glass Rock, N.C.CampgroundBig MeadowsShenandoah National ParkPost up for the weekend with backdoor access to Shenandoah National Park’s treasured waterfalls and trails. Within minutes of leaving your campsite, you can be at the base of Dark Hollow Falls or hiking along the Appalachian Trail.FINALISTSDeep Creek Tube Center & Campground, N.C.Flag Rock Recreation Area, Va.Biking TrailGreenbrier River TrailCaldwell—Cass, W.Va.Take a day or a week to pedal this historic rail-trail, which passes over 35 bridges, through two tunnels, and along some of the state’s most remote and vibrant forests.FINALISTSCarvins Cove, Va.Bryce Mountain Bike Park, Va.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]Urban ParkMill MountainRoanoke, Va.This nearly 2,000-foot mountain is visible from just about anywhere in downtown Roanoke and serves as a constant reminder for the Star City’s residents to make time to go outside and play.FINALISTSJames River Park, Va.Steele Creek, Tenn.Ski RunCupp RunSnowshoe Mountain Resort, W.Va.Hope your quads are ready. This run plummets 1,500 vertical feet in just over a mile.FINALISTSShay’s Revenge, Snowshoe Mountain Resort, W.Va.Cliffhanger, Wintergreen Resort, Va.Terrain ParkSnowshoe Mountain ResortSnowshoe, W.Va.With 28 acres of freestyle terrain and five different terrain parks, you can session Snowshoe’s features all day long and still not hit every jump or jib.FINALISTS (tied) Wintergreen Resort, Va., and Canaan Valley Resort, W.Va.Bryce ResortSUP SpotSummersville LakeSummersville, W.Va.Over 28,000 acres in size, Summersville Lake is West Virginia’s largest lake. Its 60 miles of shoreline are largely undeveloped and dominated by soaring sandstone cliffs, which served as the venue for PsicoRoc 2016, the country’s first outdoor deep water soloing competition.FINALISTSFontana Lake, N.C.Roanoke River, Va.Blue Ridge Parkway SpotPeaks of OtterBedford, Va.Comprised of three rolling mountaintops—Sharp Top, Flat Top, and Harkening Hill—the Peaks of Otter were once prized Native American hunting grounds. Today, visitors can fish the iconic waters of Abbott Lake, wine and dine at the Peaks of Otter Lodge, or camp out under the stars at the base of Sharp Top Mountain.FINALISTSBlack Balsam, N.C.Mount Mitchell, N.C.WaterfallCascade FallsGiles County, Va.The 69-foot falls plunges between 200-foot rock walls into a vast and deep pool. The idyllic waterfall might look like the picture-perfect place to swim, but its waters should only be appreciated from the banks.FINALISTSCrabtree Falls, Va.Linville Falls, N.C.Wilderness AreaDolly Sods Wilderness AreaWest VirginiaThis high elevation wilderness area is laced with spruce trees and tannin stained creeks, rhododendron-choked trails and blueberry-studded meadows. Wild and lush and teeming with life, this 17,000+-acre wilderness area is unlike anywhere else in the Southeast.FINALISTSLinville Gorge Wilderness, N.C.Cranberry Wilderness, W.Va.Kid-Friendly Outdoor DestinationFloydFestFloyd, Va.No matter their age, kids will love exploring, creating, and imagining in the Children’s Universe and Little Planets play area at FloydFest. Bring some instruments and costumes, too, to participate in the annual Peace Parade.FINALISTSBryce Resort, Va.Sliding Rock, N.C.Pet-Friendly Outdoor DestinationBlue Mountain BreweryAfton, Va.Centrally located to a wealth of outdoor adventure, Blue Mountain Brewery’s ample outdoor space seats more than just explorers of the two-legged variety. Bring your pup after a day on the trail and soak in the Blue Ridge mountain views and locally made brews.FINALISTSCanine Social Club, N.C.Jackrabbit Trail, N.C.Place for Outdoor Singles to LiveAsheville, N.C.Given the endless outdoor adventures, nightly live music offerings, and booming craft beer scene, it’s no wonder that Asheville has become a haven for the young and restless.FINALISTSRoanoke, Va.Shenandoah ValleyPlace to Raise an Outdoor FamilyRoanoke, Va.Though the city’s population is close to 100,000, Roanoke’s close-knit districts give it a small-town, know-your-neighbor feel. Couple that sense of community mindedness with in-town greenways, trail systems, and river access, and you’ll be wondering why you didn’t move to Roanoke sooner.FINALISTSBryson City, N.C.Shenandoah County, Va.Place to Engage in Nefarious ActivitiesNot tellingVarious locationsThat’s probably a good call. We’re not in the business of keeping secrets anyway.FINALISTSGauley Fest, W.Va.Blue Ridge Parkway, N.C., Va.Place to Play HookyFayetteville, W.Va.While Fayetteville certainly has plenty of novice-level trail and paddling adventures like riding the Arrowhead Trails or SUPping the Upper New, if gnar is what you’re after, gnar is what you’ll get. Nothing like a little chunder to make you forget about the “guilt” of skipping work.FINALISTSGreen River, N.C.Massanutten Resort, Va.Fly Fishing River/CreekShenandoah RiverVirginiaThe lazy Shenandoah River provides some of the best smallmouth, largemouth, musky, and carp fishing in the country, and with relatively mild temperatures, you can float it year-round.FINALISTSMossy Creek, Va.Davidson River, N.C.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]FlatwaterSummersville LakeSummersville, W.Va.This mammoth body of placid water hides countless rock features and inlets to explore, making it possible to paddle out onto the lake and escape the crowds even in the height of summer.FINALISTSSmith Mountain Lake, Va.Lake Lure, N.C.Luxury DestinationThe GreenbrierWhite Sulphur Springs, W.Va.Set amid the rolling Allegheny Mountains, a visit to the Greenbrier is about as close to visiting a Parisian chateau as we can get here in Appalachia. But with on- and offsite adventures like biking the Greenbrier River Trail and fishing Howard’s Creek, there are plenty of opportunities to see the wilder side of West Virginia, too.FINALISTSPrimland, Va.The Omni Homestead Resort, Va.State for Outdoor ActivitiesVirginiaWithin a five hours’ drive, you can be paddling whitewater on the James River, shredding singletrack at Douthat State Park, bouldering at Grayson Highlands State Park, or hiking on any number of the state’s 544 miles of the Appalachian Trail. It’s a one-stop-shop for adventure.FINALISTSWest VirginiaNorth CarolinaWhat Makes a Great Place to Raise a Family? Our top two finalists for the “Best Place to Raise an Outdoorsy Family” couldn’t be more different. The mid-sized city of Roanoke, Va., has a population of nearly 100,000, while the small town of Bryson City, N.C., is home to just over 1,400. Where Roanoke was historically a railroad town, early Bryson City residents earned their living from farming.Despite their differences, there is one theme that unites them as the region’s leading adventure basecamps for families: access.“The Appalachian Trail is a 15-minute drive away, and the Blue Ridge Parkway is only 10 minutes away,” says Roanoke resident Nicole Lenderking, whose 10-year-old son is actively involved in the youth cycling scene. “Our house sits on the edge of Carvins Cove and feels like it’s out in the middle of nowhere, but then you’re less than 20 minutes from downtown.“Where we used to live in town, we could jump on the greenway and ride our bikes, without cars, to the bottom of Mill Mountain and its extensive trail network,” says Nicole’s husband Troy. “It’s pretty unique to have that type of a trail system just one mile from downtown.”Down in the westernmost corner of North Carolina, Bryson City is the literal gateway to a number of the region’s most prized outdoor destinations, such as the Nantahala River, Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Fontana Lake, and Tsali Recreation Area. For Bryson City, N.C., resident Mac Brown, who runs his own fly fishing guide service, that proximity to the outdoors was appealing to him, first as a thru-hiker on the Appalachian Trail (’86), then as a seasonal guide for the Nantahala Outdoor Center, and later as a father.“The more you give kids a passion for the outdoors, the more likely it will make them better citizens down the road,” says Brown. “Swain County is a huge playground, with 90% of the land being federally owned. We run and ride mountain bikes, and I know it makes my kids more responsible individuals.”With frequent family friendly festivals and events, a reasonable cost of living, and a central location to a number of other major urban centers, it’s no wonder outdoorsy families are flocking to these communities.“There’s not any amount of money that would make me want to leave from here,” says Brown. “I wouldn’t move anywhere else in America.”Running EventBlue Ridge MarathonRoanoke, Va.Each spring, hundreds of runners from all walks of life head to the Start City to see if they have what it takes to tackle the country’s toughest road marathon. The course certainly packs a punch, with over 7,430 feet of climbing in just 26.2 miles.FINALISTSPark to Park Half, Va.Shut-In Ridge Trail Run, N.C.Biking EventTour de ValleyWaynesboro, Va.Ride through Shenandoah Valley’s bucolic countryside on this fully supported century and metric century. Though technically a race, this event has a much more inclusive feel, almost like a big group ride.FINALISTSShenandoah Mountain 100, Va.Assault on Mount Mitchell, N.C.Paddling EventGauley FestSummersville, W.Va.Since 1983, the annual whitewater releases on the Gauley River have pulled paddlers from their respective corners of the world to the banks of this rowdy, big-wave river. The festival includes vendor exhibitions, downriver races, and plenty of Pillow Rock Creature Craft carnage to keep even non-boaters entertained (if you don’t know what a Creature Craft is, do yourself a favor and look it up).FINALISTSGreen Race, N.C.Nantahala Racing Club Whitewater Open, N.C.Climbing EventNew River Gorge Craggin’ ClassicFayetteville, W.Va.Made for climbers, by climbers, this multiday event is part party, part manual labor. The weekend kicks off on Friday with an all-day stewardship project in the Gorge, slingin’ rocks and wrestling rhodo. Afterwards, it’s all-you-can-boogie glow stick parties and dyno comps.FINALISTSTriple Crown Bouldering Series at Hound Ears, N.C.HomoClimbtastic, W.Va.Triathlon/Multisport EventCaptain Thurmond’s Challenge — The New River Gorge GamesFayetteville, W.Va.This adventure triathlon is the pinnacle of endurance—competitors start by mountain biking 15 miles to the Cunard put-in for the New River Gorge, kayak seven miles of class IV+ whitewater, and run 6.5 miles (which climbs 1,100 vertical feet) back to town.FINALISTSApp(ugh)lachian Race Series, Va.Luray Triathlon, Va.Adventure RaceGO Outside Fest Wild Gear ChaseRoanoke, Va.Be it a water bottle or a kayak, everybody wins in this checkpoint scavenger hunt. Racers are given a cue sheet with hints to destinations within a two-mile radius of the festival, with the goal being to hit as many of the places as possible. The more checkpoints you visit, the sooner you’ll get to pick your free swag in the gear tent.FINALISTSShenandoah Epic Adventure Race, Va.Asheville Urban Odyssey, N.C.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]Mud Run/Obstacle CourseSpartan Race SeriesVarious locationsThe challenge-by-choice format of the Spartan Sprint allows participants of all abilities to take part in the action. Start out small with the 3.1-mile distance, or take on the Ultra Beast 12-14-miler before tackling the Spartan’s namesake obstacles like the slippery wall, fire jump, spear throw, and rope climb.FINALISTSMad Anthony Mud Run, Va.Muddy ACCE Race, Va.FestivalFloydFestFloyd, Va.Nestled high up in the mountains of central Virginia, FloydFest is a festival that has truly mastered the art of paying homage to the region’s musical heritage while still welcoming the eclectic new-age sounds of today. The 2018 lineup is already looking stellar, with Foster the People, Jason Isbell and the 400 Unit, and Langhorne Slim, to name a few.FINALISTSGO Outside Festival, Va.Mountain Sports Festival, N.C.Rowdiest EventGauley FestSummersville, W.Va.The Power of Events to Do GoodIt seems appropriate that the festival celebrating the unruly Gauley River is just as raucous. We’d be concerned if it wasn’t.Combine live music, beer, food, and likeminded people, and you’re bound to have a good time, but these days, festivals are doing more than hosting big parties. Some of the most popular festivals are actually breeding grounds for do goodery.Just ask American Whitewater’s Executive Director Mark Singleton. Though AW’s Gauley Fest is undoubtedly a wild weekend of whitewater shenanigans, the event is also the largest gathering of the organization’s supporters in the country. And that, says Singleton, gives AW a prime opportunity to continue education and outreach on upcoming projects, like the organization’s campaign to establish rivers like the Nolichucky River as Wild and Scenic in commemoration of this year’s 50th anniversary of the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act.“Activism was really the genesis of Gauley Fest,” says Singleton. “Back in the early ‘80s, there was a proposal that would have dewatered the upper three miles of [the Gauley] River and put in a pipe from the current dam location down to below Pillow Rock. It was boaters who came together to push back on that proposal and a secondary dam proposal at Swiss. That kind of public engagement shaped AW as an organization that could rally grassroots support and really protect rivers for their recreation and conservation values. Now, the management of the New and Gauley Rivers is a national example of what good river management can look like.”Three months prior to Gauley Fest and on the other side of the New River Gorge Bridge, Atlanta-based climber Alex Rowland’s brainchild event HomoClimbtastic is paving the way for inclusivity in the world of adventure as the world’s largest queer-friendly climbing convention.“Climbing can be a tough sport to break into if you don’t already know people,” says Rowland. “When I first started climbing, it felt like a bit of a struggle to find outdoor climbing partners.” So 10 years ago, Rowland started the HomoClimbtastic Club. Its first convention only had a five-person turnout, but Rowland had so much fun, he was hardly discouraged. Now, the event, which is held annually on the third weekend of July, regularly brings in 100 climbers from all over the country. From a drag show to a floatie pride parade on Summersville Lake, the festival is entirely too much fun, and that, says Rowland, was sorta the point.“A lot of activism can be really tough, and I wanted this to be more than activism,” he says. “This is work, but I wanted it to feel much more like a celebration than anything else.”FINALISTSGO Outside Festival, Va.LOCKN’ Festival, Va.Toughest EventShenandoah Epic Adventure RaceBentonville, Va.For eight years running, this 24-hour race has pushed even the toughest endurance athletes to their limits. Cover over 100 miles of ground by bike, boat, and foot, and come prepared to put your navigational skills to the test.FINALISTSThe Barkley Marathons, Tenn.The Green Race, N.C.Costumed EventGreat Outdoor Provisions Surf-n-Santa 5-MilerVirginia Beach, Va.Picture this: thousands of racers decked in five-piece Santa suits, running through the night while hundreds more elves hand out candy canes and gingerbread cookies on the course. Sound too good to be true? It’s not.FINALISTSSuper Hero 5K, N.C.Thrill on the Hill, Va.Fly Fishing EventWNC Fly Fishing ExpoAsheville, N.C.Considered by many anglers to be the most comprehensive fly fishing event in the region, this expo is no doubt educational, but it’s after the long day of workshops and clinics that the true fun begins: BBQ cookouts, beers, fly fishing films. That’s the stuff true friends are made of.FINALISTSRumble in the Rhododendron Fly Fishing Tournament, N.C.Mossy Creek Invitational, Va.Adventurer of the YearJohn ForbesKingsport, Tenn.You’ll know John Forbes when you see him on the trail. His long gray beard is unmistakable, hiding behind it a whimsical grin that hardly contains his enthusiasm for hiking in the Tri-Cities region, excursions which he thoroughly documents on his page Tri-Cities Hiking Adventures. Give him a follow!FINALISTSEllie Quinn, Va.Megan Robinson, Va.Instagram Account to Follow@ellieontheatDid you know that an empty Mountain House package can hold two dirty diapers? Or that an umbrella is a necessary piece of gear if you’re expecting to breast-feed on trail? Though Kanga, Roo, and Sherpa’s (that’s Bekah, Ellie, and Derrick Quirin) thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail is over, their Instagram handle continues to be a great resource and inspiration to active families with young children (plus, that Ellie is just too stinkin’ cute).FINALISTS@blueridgemtguides@moonmegroanoke[nextpage title=”Read on!”]PhotographerBilly BowlingLebanon, Va.Specializing in landscape photography, Billy Bowling is always outside capturing the diversity and underrated beauty of the Southeast, particularly in his home state of Virginia.FINALISTSSarah Rhulen, N.C.Sam Dean, Va.Local/Regional AthleteBen KingCharlottesville, Va.Originally heralding from central Virginia, professional cyclist Ben King now spends most of his time in Italy, where he’s training as a member of the prestigious Team Dimension Data for Qhubeka. In the under-23 division, King crushed the competition at the 2010 USA Cycling Pro Road National Championships and the 2010 Pan-American Time Trial and Road Championships, which he won.FINALISTSGordon Wadsworth, Va.Travis Pietila, Va.Raft GuideWill NorrisNantahala Outdoor Center, N.C.Will Norris isn’t just a raft guide. He’s a kayaker, canoeist, standup paddleboarder and rower, too. For the past 17 years, Norris has been facilitating downriver experiences for locals and out-of-towners alike, and as a Rescue 3 International swift water instructor, he prides himself on safety first, and fun times second.FINALISTSAlisa Hudgel, ACE Adventure ResortSexy Tony, New and Gauley River AdventuresClimbing GuideDeb SimonHard Rock Climbing, Fayetteville, W.Va.Deb Simon’s passion might be rock climbing, first, but with that love comes an even deeper appreciation for wilderness medicine. Last year, both Deb and her husband Bryan, who are co-founders of Vertical Medicine Resources, became the first nurses ever to receive a Master’s degree in Mountain Medicine, and their co-written climbing and wilderness first aid guidebook Vertical Aid has quickly become a standard of excellence in the climbing industry.FINALISTSGrant Price, Blue Ridge Mountain GuidesKarsten Delap, Fox Mountain GuidesFly Fishing GuideEugene ShulerFly Fishing the SmokiesBorn and raised in the Smoky Mountains, Eugene Shuler was destined to be an angler. As a third generation guide, a love of regional rivers and tailwaters runs thick in his blood and is obvious in his many leadership roles—he’s a United States Coast Guard Captain, a certified fly fishing instructor from New York’s prestigious Wulff School of Fly Fishing, and the founder and president of the North Carolina Fly Fishing Team’s Board of Directors (which has won more tournaments than any other fly fishing team in North America).FINALISTSKen Kastorff, Endless River AdventuresPatrick Sessoms, Due South OutfittersA.T. Thru HikerBekah, Derrick, and Ellie QuirinRoanoke, Va.Bekah and Derrick Quirin always dreamed of thru-hiking the Appalachian Trail, so when they were blessed with the birth of their first child, Ellie, they decided not to let that dream pass them by. In September 2017, the Quirin family, whose trail names are Kanga (Bekah), Roo (Ellie), and Sherpa (Derrick), completed a flip-flop thru-hike of the white blaze with their then-one-year-old daughter, poopy diapers and all.FINALISTSJennifer Pharr Davis, N.C.Joe ‘Stringbean’ McConaughey, Wash.Inspiring Outdoor PersonalityMegan RobinsonRoanoke, Va.Megan Robinson is an equestrian first and foremost, but more than anything, she’s an advocate for moving bodies and open minds. Catch her at The Y in Roanoke, where she provides active outreach to youth and families.FINALISTSThomas Mabry, Tenn.Juliet Kastorff, N.C.Outdoor Legend/PioneerChip ChaseCanaan Valley, W.Va.Foraging master, shot ski aficionado, dancing machine, Chip Chase brings the party wherever he goes. Ullr reincarnate, Chase is happiest when the snow is falling on his magical kingdom, aka White Grass Ski Touring Center, and the shine is flowing freely (just don’t ski through his parking lot, people).FINALISTSKen Kastorff, N.C.Mike Fischesser, N.C.The Power of Adventuring as a FamilyAppalachian Trail record holder Jennifer Pharr Davis and her husband Brew have taken backpacking trips on the Appalachian Trail and hiked in all 50 states with their first-born daughter, Charley. But it wasn’t until her most recent thru-hike of the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, during which she raised awareness and advocated for continued support of the trail, that she finally started to see the effect that time in the outdoors was having on her children.“It’s hard to get Charley to do chores and pick up her room. She’s four, and turned five while we were on the trail. But one day during the hike, she was going along the beach picking up trash. I hadn’t asked her to do anything, so when I asked her why she was doing it, she said, ‘I’m saving the turtles.’ She had just visited a sea turtle rehabilitation and rescue center, and had learned the connection between pollution and human impact and the environment and was putting it into practice.”For Bekah and Derrick Quirin, thru hiking the Appalachian Trail with their one-year-old girl Ellie presented not only the opportunity for their daughter to be steeped in the natural world that first brought the Roanoke, Va., couple together, but also the chance to witness some of her most formative months.“When Derrick was working full-time and he would come home, he would get bummed that he didn’t get to see Ellie’s milestones firsthand,” says Bekah. “It was really awesome to have him right there when she took her first steps on the trail or started saying ‘Daddy.’ From my perspective, seeing his face light up when she would do those things was a really big deal.”Of course, all of that is not to say that adventuring, on any scale, with a young family is easy. Jennifer Pharr Davis’ husband Brew struggled being a “stay-at-home-dad without the home,” while he and their two children (both under the age of five at the time) followed and often hiked with Pharr Davis on her Mountains-to-Sea Trail thru hike. And though Pharr Davis does not have any intentions of hiking another long-distance trail in the near future, she’s okay with it, so long as she can continue to show her children the lessons the outdoors can offer.“We were out there for three months and three days. There were highs and lows and at the end, we came out closer as a family,” she says. “We like to paint a really rosy picture of adventure and talk about the highlights, but getting through the low points and staying committed to the team is also really important.”For families curious about what it takes to get kids adventuring, Bekah Quirin, who regularly leads Hike It Baby hikes in Roanoke, says to start small on greenways and local parks and build up a solid set of backcountry skills before introducing a young child into the mix.“The books will tell you to stick to a schedule, but that’s not realistic for an adventuring family,” says Bekah. “If you want a flexible baby, you have to raise a flexible baby.”PizzaPies & PintsMultiple locations in Ohio, West Virginia, Alabama, Kentucky, and VirginiaWhat began in 2003 as a one-room pizza shop for Fayetteville, West Virginia’s raft guides has now grown into one of the region’s top dining destinations. The restaurant’s gourmet pizza options (think grape and gorgonzola) paired with top-notch artisanal beer from around the world makes for the perfect post-adventure meal.FINALISTSBlue Mountain Brewery, Va.Hill and Hollar, W.Va.BurgerSecret Sandwich SocietyFayetteville, W.Va., and Richmond, Va.The Society’s burgers are of the stick-to-your-ribs variety, the perfect refuel after a hard day on the rock or trail. We like the Eagle for its savory combination of seared mortadella, roasted garlic mayo, pickles, and a pile of crispy onions, all topped off with an over-easy egg. Trust us on this one.Secret Sandwich SocietyFINALISTSCitizen Burger Bar, Va.Jim’s Drive In, W.Va.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]TacoThunderbird TacoLewisburg, W.Va.Tex-Mex done right. This quaint yet hip taco joint dishes up some truly authentic plates made with locally sourced beef steak and kickin’ ingredients like chili roasted sweet potato and cream cheese-stuffed charred jalapeno.FINALISTSA Place to Eat, Md.Brazos Tacos, Va.BBQRidge View BBQInstitute, W.Va.Sometimes it feels good to be bad. Load up on Ridge View’s hickory smoked, slow cooked BBQ for a true taste of the south, and add the pork rinds.FINALISTSDirty Ernie’s, W.Va.BBQ Exchange, Va.Ice CreamThe StacheFayetteville, W.Va.The Stache checks all of our boxes, with an inviting atmosphere, fun rotating flavors (our favs are the cappuccino crunch and dark chocolate raspberry truffle), and an apple pie sundae that rivals grandma’s best. It’s also probably the only place in Fayetteville where you can buy an ice cream cone and a six-pack of fart bombs.FINALISTSBlue Cow, Va.Kline’s, Va.RestaurantSecret Sandwich SocietyFayetteville, W.Va., Richmond, Va.The SSS doesn’t just make good food, they do good, too. The restaurant recycles everything and is 100% wind powered, which speaks volumes in this day and age.FINALISTSBlue Mountain Brewery, Va.The French Goat, W.Va.Farm to Table RestaurantSHiFTFrostburg, Md.For SHiFT, “farm to table” isn’t just a marketing ploy—it’s a way of life. Dine with the seasons at this locally sourced, vegetarian and vegan friendly eatery in downtown Frostburg.FINALISTSWild Wolf Brewing, Va.The Station, W.Va.VegetarianLaughing Seed CaféAsheville, N.C.Veggies unite! This vegetarian only restaurant was the first of its kind in downtown Asheville and has been serving up some impressive, internationally inspired veggie dishes for over 20 years. Try the Harmony Bowl smothered in sesame ginger sauce once, and you might never go back to meat.FINALISTSFirefly Fare, Va.Gillie’s, Va.BreakfastCathedral Café & Book StoreFayetteville, W.Va.No trip to the New River Gorge is complete without breakfast at Cathedral. Located smack in the center of town, this place cranks out everything from pancakes to breakfast burritos and has won the hearts of so many locals and tourists alike that their iconic mugs have been photographed in everywhere from the Carolina coast to the mountains of Nepal.FINALISTSScratch Biscuit Company, Va.Sunny Point Café, N.C.LunchSecret Sandwich SocietyFayetteville, W.Va., Richmond, Va.Say ‘goodbye’ to your boring old PB&J brown bag and ‘hello’ to your new favorite lunch. For a sweet and savory sammy, check out the Truman, which features turkey, peach jam, blue cheese spread, and crispy onions piled high on a toasted baguette. Hungry yet?FINALISTSWild Wolf Brewing, Va.Bellair Market, Va.Post Adventure HangoutThe GroveFayetteville, W.Va.Beer on tap? Check. Groovy atmosphere? Check. Poetry slams and live music? Double check. The Grove is the place to be during your next weekend in the New River Gorge.FINALISTSSilverback Distillery, Va.Parkway Brewing, Va.Bar/PubDante’s BarFrostburg, Md.Every good outdoor town needs a place to kick back with a beer or cocktail and let loose a little. Dante’s is just that, offering killer happy hour deals, free pool and karaoke on Wednesdays, and live music throughout the weekend.FINALISTSBlue Mountain Brewery, Va.The Grove, W.Va.Brewery1812 BreweryCumberland, Md.After a day biking the C&O or Great Allegheny Passage, stop in at this truly unique brewery. Housed inside a barn that dates back to 1812, the 2,500-foot, two-story brewery is a destination in its own right. Head there on Thursdays for game night—Sorry is a lot more fun with a couple of IPAs in you.FINALISTSGreenbrier Valley Brewing Company, W.Va.Blue Mountain Brewery, Va.WineryToasted GoatFrostburg, Md.Admit it. You’re a sucker for labels. So are we, and Toasted Goat’s quirky hand drawn labels are among some of our favorites. It’s just a bonus that the wine is pretty tasty, too.FINALISTSKing Family Vineyards, Va.Veritas Vineyard & Winery, Va.CideryBold RockNellysford, Va., Mills River, N.C.No matter which end of the Blue Ridge you reside, it’s guaranteed that if you pick up a bottle of Bold Rock, it’s going to be made with apples grown right in your backyard. With a wide selection of hard ciders ranging in dryness, Bold Rock is setting the standard for regionally made hard cider.FINALISTSHawk Knob Hard Cider & Mead, W.Va.Blue Toad Hard Cider, WintergreenDistillerySilverback DistilleryAfton, Va.Bottom’s up at this green-thinking Virginia-based distillery. Silverback utilizes geothermal technologies to produce its vodka, gin, rye whiskey, and honey rye whiskey, which means that your spirits were produced with the least possible impact on the environment.FINALISTSSmooth Ambler Spirits, W.Va.Virginia Distillery, Va.Late Night EatsThe StationFayetteville, W.Va.From beer to bread, The Station’s mission is to source all of their ingredients from local suppliers, so if you’re starving after a night of dancing at The Grove, you can partake in all of that regional goodness until midnight.FINALISTSC&O Restaurant, Va.Texas Tavern, Va.Coffee ShopClatter CoffeeFrostburg, Md.As if their decadently smooth pour-over wasn’t reason enough to frequent this café, Clatter also offers a stylish space to meet, plus a substantial food menu to keep you fueled through your work. Try the Appalachian Ramen bowl if you’re there for lunch.FINALISTSMudhouse Coffee Roasters, Va.Sweet Donkey Coffee House, Va.Beyond the DishWhen April Moon Harper opened up Sunny Point Café in West Asheville 14 years ago, the neighborhood hardly had any restaurants, let alone competing breakfast joints. Now, the district is hoppin’, with a whole suite of restaurants, music venues, and bars. And despite the increase of businesses, Harper says Sunny Point’s success is largely due to their commitment to the neighborhood.“I worked in a neighborhood restaurant in Atlanta and really felt like they were the way to go,” she says. “Once you get that core of regulars, you really become a member of the community.”Each month, the restaurant uses tabletop donation envelopes to raise money for local organizations like Friends of the Blue Ridge Parkway, which Sunny Point then matches up to 20 percent.Secret Sandwich Society’s flagship restaurant in Fayetteville, W.Va., also supports local organizations and events like the New River Gorge Craggin’ Classic, the Gauley Fest Animal Race, and the annual Video Boater Challenge. In November, they joined a number of Fayetteville businesses in supporting the inaugural “Boulder Bounty” by putting up $500 with another local business for a combined $1,000 on one of the Gorge’s 10 toughest and unconquered boulders.“If you send the boulder and show it on social media, you win the bounty. The response has been crazy,” says Secret Sandwich Society owner Lewis Rhinehart. “There are international climbers in town right now trying to get these bounties. This is what Fayetteville is about and it’s what West Virginia is becoming about.”Outdoor CompanyDiamond Brand OutdoorsAsheville, N.C.What started in 1964 as a simple 900-square-foot glorified garage has now expanded into more than just a brick-and-mortar retail space. Diamond Brand helps its customers not only gear up for their adventures but also learn how to recreate safely in the outdoors through regular clinics and the annual Asheville Outdoor Show.FINALISTSEndless River Adventures, N.C.Blue Ridge Mountain Guides, Va.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]Outdoor ShopRiver Rock OutfitterFredericksburg, Va.“Adventure in any direction,” with the help of River Rock’s seasoned staff. Opened in November of 2014, the family owned outfitter is located right on the Rappahannock River where the company offers water-based instructional courses in flatwater and whitewater paddling.FINALISTSEndless River Adventures, N.C.REI, Various locationsFly Fishing OutfitterFly Fishing the SmokiesGatlinburg, Tenn., Bryson City N.C.Float or wade, walleye or smallmouth, winter or summer, these guides can do it all. If you need another adventure to add to your bucket list, tack on the outfitter’s Smokies Backcountry Trip, a two-day, one-night backpacking and fly fishing trip into the heart of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.FINALISTSEndless River Adventures, N.C.Mossy Creek Fly Fishing, Va.Running ShopFleet Feet SportsVarious locationsFrom the outside, Fleet Feet might look like any old specialty running store, but talk to the staff behind the counter and you’ll see what makes this fast-growing chain of franchises one of the most respected in the industry. Fleet Feet works hard to introduce non-runners to the sport through inclusive clinics and non-intimidating group runs.FINALISTSFoot RX, N.C.Ragged Mountain Running, Va.Bike ShopNew River BikesFayetteville, W.Va.Located in the old Fayetteville feed store, New River Bikes embodies everything we love about Fayetteville—the quirk, the character, the shirt-off-your-back hospitality. The shop’s owner Andy Forron is like a walking encyclopedia when it comes to any and all forms of riding, be it mountain biking, road riding, or bikepacking. Just don’t tell him you like Strava.FINALISTSMotion Makers, N.C.Blue Ridge Cyclery, Va.Environmental OrganizationSouthern Environmental Law CenterCharlottesville, Va.Now more than ever, it’s hard to keep track of the numerous threats and policy reversals that risk damaging the places we love. That’s why the Southern Environmental Law Center exists, to be not only a resource for concerned citizens in the Southeast but also the warriors who defend those without a voice—our water, air, mountains, forests—in the courtroom.FINALISTSTrout Unlimited, Various locationsFriends of Rappahannock, Va.Raft Guide CompanyNantahala Outdoor CenterBryson City, N.C.When Payson Kennedy and his wife Aurelia opened the NOC in 1972, they never envisioned their outfitter would become one of the most recognized breeding grounds for competitive paddlers in the world, but that’s just what it’s become. Raft guides here do more than push rubber. They’re well rounded paddlers of all disciplines, and 22 of the NOC’s staff have gone on to be Olympians.FINALISTSEndless River Adventures, N.C.ACE Adventure Resort, W.Va.Climbing GuideSeneca Rocks Climbing SchoolSeneca Rocks, W.Va.Named for that iconic flake of rock that rises high above the community, Seneca Rocks Climbing School has been showing both new and veteran climbers the ropes since 1971 when the school and climbing shop were based out of the back of a Volkswagen bus.FINALISTSBlue Ridge Mountain Guides, Va.Fox Mountain Guides, N.C.Climbing GymRiver Rock ClimbingRoanoke, Va.For the fourth year in a row, River Rock has taken the cake as Best Climbing Gym in the region. Their facility is impressive (and conveniently located next to a taproom), offering a diverse mix of beginner and expert problems, hands-on instruction, youth teams, and yoga classes to balance out all of that upper body training.FINALISTSPeak Experiences, Va.Climb Max/Smoky Mountain Adventure Center, N.C.Ski ResortSnowshoe Mountain ResortSnowshoe, W.Va.Few places in the Southeast rival Snowshoe when it comes to natural snowfall. The mountaintop resort can receive upwards of 180 inches, and with 251 acres and 57 trails to explore, it’s a big kid’s literal winter wonderland.FINALISTSWintergreen Resort, Va.Beech Mountain Resort, N.C.Après SpotWild Wolf BrewingNellysford, Va.Just a short drive away from the Appalachian Trail and Crabtree Falls, Wild Wolf is almost too conveniently located to pass up after a day on the trail. Their food portions are hearty, not to mention locally sourced, and with 13 beers on tap, it’s easy to find a brew that works for you.FINALISTSStumptown Ales, W.Va.Appalachian Mountain Brewing, N.C.Yoga StudioAsheville Community YogaAsheville, N.C.Paying $20 for a yoga class seems to be the standard fare in larger cities, but it’s that pay-to-practice philosophy that pushes away the people who need yoga most. Asheville Community Yoga is a nonprofit that offers yoga classes on a donation basis. In 2016, the center crowdfunded over $150,000 to purchase their building outright, a testament to the tribe that supports this community-minded yoga facility.FINALISTSUttara Yoga, Va.Now Yoga, Va.Zip LineAdventures on the GorgeFayetteville, W.Va.Humans might not be able to fly, but they can zip line, and short of donning a wingsuit and jumping off a cliff, this is the next best (and safest) thing. Sail 200 feet above ground on a mile-and-a-half course, where you’ll zip through the trees at a speed of up to 65 miles per hour.FINALISTSThe Gorge Zipline, N.C.Navitat, N.C.[nextpage title=”Read on!”]Farmer’s MarketWNC Farmer’s MarketAsheville, N.C.Open year-round, seven days a week, this centrally located farmer’s market was first opened in 1977 and has since become an impressive facility over 38,000 square feet in size. Aside from vendors selling items like local fruits, vegetables, preserves, and crafts, the market also houses a deli that whips up delicious sandwiches.FINALISTSCharlottesville Farmer’s Market, Va.Downtown Roanoke Farmer’s Market, Va.App for the OutdoorsStravaStrava’s ability to connect, inform, and motivate athletes of all disciplines is changing the way we go outside and play. Athletes can track mileage and elevation profiles, test themselves on timed segments against a leaderboard of area athletes, and join challenges to give their training the extra edge it needs.FINALISTSMountain HubYonderOutdoor Adventure AutomobileToyota TacomaPop a camper shell on the bed of this do-it-all adventuremobile and you’ve got yourself a home-on-wheels.FINALISTSSubaru OutbackJeep WranglerUp-and-Coming Outdoor BusinessRiver Rock OutfitterFredericksburg, Va.Born of a love between Keith and April Peterson, two like-minded, adventurous souls from Louisiana, River Rock’s mission is to provide an accessible and unassuming experience for all levels of outdoor enthusiasts.FINALISTSGearu Outdoor RentalsUOU Outdoor Guides, RVALong Live the Independent RetailerNow more than ever, independent outdoor retailers have to figure out ways to stay relevant and contend with the pressures of the Internet. Though it might seem like an uphill battle, the challenge is presenting shops the opportunity to be more than a retail space.“Our old location was really just four walls and the epitome of old school retail,” says Diamond Brand Outdoors’ Marketing Manager Chris Bubenik. “It wasn’t a destination necessarily. But when we moved, we rethought our place and redesigned it as a space where customers could really immerse themselves in the experience.”The Asheville shop added some special touches, like complimentary coffee available right when you walk in the door. It also created “personal shoppers,” who customers could set up appointments with, before or after business hours, to get one-on-one advice and attention. All of that, combined with free monthly clinics and community support initiatives totaling in $70,000 of funds raised for over 60 local organizations, has really allowed Diamond Brand to become a mainstay of the Asheville outdoor community.“We have always felt respect and support from the Asheville area, so we look to it as a responsibility on our part to put that support back out there and make things happen,” says Bubenik.Up the road at Motion Makers Bicycle Shop, owner Kent Cranford feels a similar sense of responsibility not only in supporting local events and group rides but also in being a voice for the area’s cycling community.“It’s important to maintain the riding we have now, but we want to promote and grow the opportunities we have to get people to ride bikes,” says Cranford. “Our old customer base was people who were already in the cycling community, whereas now, we have an amazing amount of first-time cyclists that we’re selling stuff to. Advocating for continued increase of greenway miles is going to be super important in the future.”“You’re really looked at as an expert,” says New River Bikes owner Andy Forron. “At the bike shop, you get to see firsthand what people want to ride, whether it’s singletrack or rail-trails. It’s like a research project. So then, when those planning meetings and efforts start in town, we already have a lot of firsthand knowledge as to what people want to ride.”Forron says that, though the retail side of the business might dwindle in years to come, he feels pretty confident that the independent bike shop will continue to be a hub for information, service, and even socializing.“It’s almost like a bar,” he says of his Fayetteville-based shop. “There’s almost always someone just sitting in here. And even though people have apps like Strava or Ride With GPS, they still come in and ask where to ride. All of that local knowledge, that’s still at the bike shop, and so is the service. The Internet is not going to fix your bike.”“We’ve lived in states all over the country and no matter where we moved, the first place we always went was the local outfitter,” says River Rock Outfitter co-owner April Peterson. “They knew about the fun things to do in the area, and the moment you step into any outfitter, you instantly feel like you have friends. That alone speaks to why independent outfitters will always have a place in communities.”Since opening in 2014, River Rock has helped Fredericksburg, Va., residents rediscover and preserve the town’s incredible natural resources. Peterson sits on the Main Street Exploratory Committee as the board’s Vice President, and she says it was important to her and her husband that the outfitter be involved in the revitalization of Main Street from the very beginning.“Retail is not dead, and you can see that in the power of Main Street communities and downtowns everywhere,” she says. “We partner with local businesses, breweries, restaurants, coffee shops, and even other retail spaces, because I believe at the end of the day that there’s not a finite pie. We’re not all fighting for the same crumbs. We can make that pie bigger and bigger and we can each have a bigger slice.”last_img read more

Hines’ airport strategy takes off with two Heathrow buys

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Lorain Breakwater Repairs Underway

first_imgConstruction work to repair the Lorain breakwater located in Lake Erie in the Port of Lorain, Lorain County, Ohio, is now underway, according to the Army Corps of Engineers, Buffalo District.USACE began repairs to the Lorain breakwater on May 12.As reported, the contractor, Great Lakes Dock and Materials, LLC, from Muskegon, Michigan, will complete the 2017 cell repair, consisting of a 50 linear foot void with a stone base and vertical sheet pile on top.“I’m pleased to see that the Army Corps of Engineers will commence work on the Lorain breakwater, which has been in desperate need of repairs for years,” said Rep. Marcy Kaptur. “A breakwater is the first line of defense against the turbulent tides of Lake Erie for many of our lake front communities. As we face the reality of rising lake levels, diligence is required to insure the safety and navigability of many harbors in the Great Lakes region.”“The Corps is continually looking for ways to work collaboratively with stakeholders on all of Lake Erie’s harbors,” said Russ Brandenburg, USACE Buffalo District senior project manager. “The Lorain Harbor repair is a perfect example of how our strong collaboration with the Port of Lorain has resulted in positive benefits through infrastructure improvements for Lake Erie and the public that use it.”The $2.1 million contract was awarded to Great Lakes Dock and Materials, LLC back in September. The repairs are anticipated for completion by the end of the 2020 construction season.last_img read more

Premier League: Aguero, Klopp break records with awards for January

first_img Loading… Jurgen Klopp and Sergio Aguero have won the Premier League’s monthly awards for January, setting new records in the process. Sergio Aguero has been named the Premier League’s Player of the Month for a record seventh time, while Jurgen Klopp takes home the managers’ gong for on an unprecedented fifth occasion in a single season. Manchester City striker Aguero was in lethal form throughout January, scoring six times and registering an assist from just three matches. Aguero also scored a brace in the 2-2 draw with Crystal Palace and got the only goal of the game as City beat Sheffield United 1-0. Having previously been tied with Steven Gerrard and Harry Kane on six Player of the Month awards, Aguero is now out in front on his own – the 31-year-old beating out competition from Alisson, Abdoulaye Doucoure, Jack Grealish, Jordan Henderson, Ayoze Perez and Jack Stephens. Read Also: Liverpool star engaging in more baptisms than he’s let in goals Klopp oversaw five successive wins in January to continue Liverpool’s ominous march towards a first top-flight crown in 30 years. It is the fifth time this term he has won the award, setting a new record for wins in a single season, taking that honour from Pep Guardiola. Klopp has now won the award eight times, a haul beaten by only Alex Ferguson, Arsene Wenger and David Moyes. FacebookTwitterWhatsAppEmail分享 Promoted Content9 Facts You Should Know Before Getting A Tattoo10 Risky Jobs Some Women DoCouples Who Celebrated Their Union In A Unique, Unforgettable Way7 Facts About Black Holes That Will Blow Your MindWhich Country Is The Most Romantic In The World?Some Impressive And Almost Shocking Robots That ExistWho Is The Most Powerful Woman On Earth?12 Actors Who Can Only Play Bad GuysThe Best Cars Of All Time33 Celebs Photos From Their Childhood: Will You Recognize Them?5 Of The World’s Most Unique Theme Parks7 Of The Wealthiest Universities In The World In doing so, Aguero became the Premier League’s highest-scoring foreign player, with his hat-trick in the 6-1 hammering of Aston Villa taking him beyond Thierry Henry’s record of 175. That treble also propelled him above Alan Shearer’s haul of 11 hat-tricks, as Aguero set a new record.last_img read more

Michigan primary could make or break Sanders’ campaign

first_imgDETROIT – Bernie Sanders proved his 2016presidential bid was serious with an upset victory in Michigan powered by hisopposition to free trade and appeal among working-class voters. Four yearslater, the same state could either revive the Vermont senator’s campaign orrelegate him to the role of protest candidate. Michigan and five other states holdpresidential contests on Tuesday at a critical point in the Democratic race. Former Vice President Joe Biden islooking to quash Sanders’ hopes and cement his own front-runner status just a weekafter resurrecting his beleaguered White House bid with a delegate victory onSuper Tuesday. He played up his underdog story on Monday as he campaignedacross Michigan, reflecting on his stutter as a child and the deaths of hisfirst wife and young daughter. (AP)center_img A supporter of Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., applauds as Sanders speaks during a campaign rally Monday, March 9, 2020. APlast_img read more