Rutherford's rural communities honored at WNC event

Dec. 02, 2012 @ 10:03 AM

 A luncheon was held at The Grove Park Inn Resort & Spa in  Asheville on Saturday, Nov. 17 with over 200 community leaders from 14 counties and the Eastern Band of Cherokee to recognize and reward exceptional community development programs across the mountains. Rutherford County has representatives from all communities that won awards at the banquet. 

Rutherford County Board of Commissioners Chairman Julius Owens was  also present to support all the communities of Rutherford County for their hard work and the pride they have for their individual communities.

WNC Communities was proud to announce the winners of the 63rd  WNC Communities is dedicated to providing a unique forum for leaders in the mountain region  to convene, collaborate and carry out innovative programs to improve the quality of  life for rural communities and the agriculture sector.

 This year marked the 63rd WNC Honors Awards, a program built on the tradition of recognizing achievements in communities for their work on behalf of their residents. The awards are designed to serve as an inspiration for replicating community success.

“We are honored to recognize community development clubs for their innovative programs and hard work.” shared Linda Lamp, Executive Director of WNC Communities.

 “Participating Communities” received a cash award of $250 each for their successful  projects implemented during the past year. 

The communities from Rutherford County that were  recognized at the luncheon were: Ellenboro Woman’s Club, Gilkey School, Golden Valley, Pearidge Ruritan, Union Mills, and Whitehouse.

 Owens stated that he wished all of the communities in Rutherford County were enrolled in the WNC Communities Program as it is a great way to showcase Rutherford County and the pride that citizens have for their community.

Community programs range from addressing basic needs such as a food pantry, an  emergency shelter, thrift stores, or litter sweeps to significant programs focused on education, heritage, economic development, farmland preservation or health and wellness.

Generous sponsorships from Harrah’s Cherokee Casino & Hotel, Mission Health  Systems, Buncombe County Farm Bureau, Carolina Farm Credit, Duke Energy, First Citizens  Bank, HomeTrust Bank, and Wells Fargo made it possible to award over $27,000 to 61  communities throughout Western North Carolina for their innovative approaches to addressing community needs.

Communities voluntarily participate in the WNC Honors Awards Program by submitting  an application to WNC Communities in September. Communities are judged on projects, fund  raising efforts, collaboration with local organizations or businesses, economic development and  sustainability, as well as their community future and vision.