March 2011 Newsletter

News From Them Thar Hills!
Volume 2, Issue 3, March 2011
The Bright Lights of Blairsville!

Big news for Blairsville! We have a new traffic light!

That’s right folks. There is now a traffic light at the Ingles and CVS intersection. Ingles built what is now the largest Ingles store in the US at the intersection and the expected traffic will make an already busy (and dangerous) intersection even more so. Why just the other day I was exiting the Ingles parking lot and imagine my horror when there were 4 cars in front of me at the light. Four cars!!! If traffic gets any worse I suppose I will have to pack up the dog and consider moving out further still.

On a more serious note, the installation of new traffics lights brings with it the possibility of increased accidents. When I first moved up here 12 years ago there wasn’t a light at the Ingles in Blue Ridge. When they installed the light by the Taco Bell they warned everyone in the paper and installed warning signs replete with flashing lights on all 4 sides leading to the light. Despite these admonitions there were several severe accidents resulting in at least 2 deaths. Granted the speed limit at the Blue Ridge site is 55 mph. One should exercise caution at new lights around these here parts.
It’s not always fun to have to correct one’s self but it’s how we learn. At least it’s one of the less painful ways.

In last month’s newsletter we told you about the new restaurant that was being constructed by the name of Armadillo Café. Well, the name is actually Armadillo Grill. We didn’t want folks to be riding up and down the highway cursing our name because they couldn’t find that $##@%* Armadillo Café. The Grill is now open so drop in there and give ‘em a try. They are north of 515 on Hwy 129 about 1/4 mile on the left.

And, no, they still won’t be serving armadillo! However, if you would like a recipe drop me a line and I will scrape one up for you. I think it’s on page 63 of the White Trash Cookbook, right after Frieda’s Five Can Casserole. And yes, there is actually a cookbook by that name so no letters, please!
Local Eatin’

Sue’s Cafeteria is this month’s featured epicurean establishment. While it’s not your up-scale type of place the food is better than the average buffet style that is the local standard. They are also home to the “Best Burger in Town!”

If you like those big, sloppy burgers that are hard to put down without makin’ a mess then Sue’s is the place for you. Family owned and run for goin’ on 35 years owner Sue Huff also makes home-made cakes and pies that sell whole or by the slice. Home made fudge and candies, Jelly Belly jelly beans and hand-dipped Mayfield ice cream round out the dessert selection. She even sells canned goods she puts-up herself!

She prepares complete carry-out meals on special request with turkey and ham and all the fixin’s a Sue’s specialty. She is there cooking and baking while greeting customers so stop by, say hi and chow down!

You can find them on Facebook or call 706-632-2960. Hours are M – Thur: 11-7  Fri – Sat: 11-8 and Sun: 11:30 – 3.
March Mountain Events

Charlie Daniels in Concert            Phone: 706-896-4191
Hiawassee, GA                 Website:
                    Sponsor: Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds

3/18/2011  Time: 8:00 PM – 8:30 PM
The Little Star That Could            The O. Wayne Rollins Planetarium
Event Description This is a delightful story about an average yellow star in search of planets of his own. Along the way, he meets other stars, learns what makes each star special, and discovers that stars can form clusters and galaxies. Eventually, Little Star finds his planets, and each planet is introduced with basic information about our solar system.

Mardi Gras at Brasstown Valley Resort   Young Harris, GA
Hours: 5:00 – 9:00 pm   Phone: 706-379-4617
Cost: All you can eat buffet $11.95 adults $5.99 children 5-11
Description: Bourbon Street Drink Specials Foot-tappin’ Zydeco Music

Kingdom Heirs   1028 Georgia Road   Franklin, NC
Hours: 7:30pm   Phone: 828-524-7598 or 877-415-7315
Sponsor: Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts
Cost: $16 and $11 Adult – $5 Student
Description: From the mountains of East Tenessee, Southern Gospel Music fills the air and is the home of The Kingdom Heirs, one of Southern Gospel Music’s top Male Quartet’s. The Kingdom Heirs were asked to become the resident gospel group and now this year, but The Kingdom Heirs and Dollywood will be celebrating 25 years.

Blood, Sweat & Tears and Chuck Negron   1028 Georgia Road   Franklin, NC
Hours: 7:30pm   Website:
Sponsor: Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts
Cost: $45.00
Description: Blood Sweat and Tears: A musical institution, Blood Sweat & Tears has left an indelible mark on the American music scene since 1968. One of the greatest horn bands in the history of popular music, BS&T’s alumni roster reads like a Who’s Who of the world’s greatest jazz and rock musicians. As BS&T has evolved through the years, it has maintained its commitment to high standards by including in its current roster the most talented musicians available. Chuck Negron: From a humble Bronx, New York apartment to success and wealth far beyond anything he could imagine, the Chuck Negron story is an amazing saga. For what could have ended on a deadly downbeat is today a wonderful story that gives us all hope and faith that miracles do happen

3/27/2011 Time: 10:00 AM – 2:00 PM
2010 Easter Egg Hunt at Meeks Park
The Easter Egg Hunt will be on Saturday, March 27 at 9:00am at Meeks Park Pavillion #3.
There will be over 4,000 eggs placed on three fields for three age groups. Each group will hunt at a different time, and there will be a prize baskets for all age groups.

3/4 – 3/5/2011
Mardi Gras Celebration   The Blue Orleans Bistro
224 W. Main Street in downtown Blue Ridge, near the Depot
Live Jazz in Blue Orleans Bistro from 6:30 to 9:30, specials all day. Friday and Saturday Feb. 25th and 26th and then again on March 4th and 5th.
706-258-2275   Visit web site

3/18 – 3/20/2011
Spring Wine Highway Weekend
Nine Wineries from Young Harris to Dahlonega
Mark you calendar for our 5th annual “Wine Highway Weekend”. Last years event was great and this year will be even better! Blue Ridge is a great central location to base from for this event. This is a perfect time to get back in the swing of spring activities and there is no better way to shake the winter doldrums than spending a weekend in the mountains and tasting the Award Winning wines that are made from Georgia Grown Grapes. Pick up a copy of the Taste a Perfect Day brochure here at the Fannin County Chamber to plan your weekend. This event is 2 full days, you choose which winery you visit first to pay your one time fee. Check the website for details as the event gets closer, the wineries will each have their own schedules of events. This is a wonderful weekend to explore in Georgia’s Blue Ridge.
Georgia Winegrowers Association    706-878-9463    Visit web site

3/19 – 3/20/2011
Whitewater Rafting    Ocoee River
Whitewater rafting begins it’s 2011 season on March 19th! Weekends only until May 30th and then they will run daily with the exception of Tuesday’s and Wednesday’s through August. The Ocoee River has become the most popular whitewater rafting adventure in America with continuous rapids and many play spots for miles of endless fun and adventure. Begin your adventure by visiting our link below to book your trip.      Visit web site
Eatin’ In Season

Spring is in the air and we can once again begin “Eatin in Season”.The perfect thing to grow, eat and enjoy in March is Lettuce and Spinach. you cannot grow your own greens, don’t despair, it is a good item to purchase this time of year at your local grocery store. I am going to focus this article on Spinach.Spinach is exceptionally rich in vitamins and minerals, particularly folic acid, vitamin K, magnesium and manganese.You do not have to be Popeye to enjoy Spinach.It is great in salads and sandwiches.Try layering it into your favorite lasagna!How about sautéing it in a little olive oil and garlic, toss in a few pine nuts – YUM.Following is a Spinach salad we enjoy, hope you do to.

Spinach Salad with feta and pecans

1 C pecan halves
6 T extra virgin olive oil
2T white balsamic vinegar
1T honey
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
1pound spinach, tough stems removed and large leaves torn
1 cup dried cherries, cranberries or chopped dried apricots
6ounces feta cheese

Toast pecans in a dry skillet over med heat until very lightly colored, about 5 minutes.Remove from skillet and set aside.To make dressing, combine oil, vinegar and honey in small bowl.Whisk until well blended.Season to taste with salt and pepper.Combine spinach, pecans and dried fruit in a salad bowl.Toss. Crumble cheese into the salad, add dressing and toss again.
…a note from Cindy

Another month is gone and along with it went our flying squirrels.As you may remember from last month I mentioned the fact that I had what I believed to be a flying squirrel in my walls.Well, I was right.Not only did we have a flying squirrel, we had 3!I hired a company to come out, determine where they were getting in, get them out and close their entryway.It is pretty amazing how those little guys can get in such small spaces.We had 2 getting in at the roof soffit where the boards did not butt tightly together and we had 1 that was lifting the flap on one of the house vents and getting in.Traps were set on the exterior of the house so that when the squirrels came out they could not get back in.The openings were then covered with hardware cloth.I feel much better about having our house all to ourselves but I sure did feel guilty during the eviction process.

As the leaves start budding it is a perfect time to start determining dead trees on your property. With March comes spring rains and strong storms.Don’t risk having a weak or dead tree fall on your house!

In closing, it is time for you to come back to these mountains.Spring is in the air, birds are singing, the days are warmer and your house could use some company.Don’t be strangers, hurry back!!

To remove your name from our mailing list, please click here.
Questions or comments? E-mail us at or call 678-439-9125
All content contained herein written and produced by Donald Caraway with submissions from Cindy Cohen.