“Swarming is the colonies natural method of reproduction.”

The Pollinate hive is thriving and swarming.  Our family is nesting, preparing for the arrival of our first child on the Spring equinox! As you know, when you do what you love, the intertwining of professional and personal is inevitable and rich. 

Upon the fifth year of making honey with amazing pollinators in this community, I have decided to swarm, evolving into a new colony for growth and production.  I am honored to have accepted a position on New Belgium Brewing’s Asheville management team as Community Relations Specialist.  This position, starting January 6, is a continuation of the collaboration we’ve been developing in a contract relationship over the last two years. It’s one of a handful of positions New Belgium has made as part of their first tier hiring priorities, reflecting their commitment to truly being part of and engaging with this community – and one of the reasons I’m committed to working with them.

The time is right for me to seek new growth as part of a larger team with an amazing business that believes in collaboration, process and community relationships. This opportunity to learn and grow while continuing the Pollinate mission of business development through community development comes at the close of Pollinate’s most productive year- wonderful to shift and continue to buzz, reproduce and evolve.  Thank you for all your support and collaboration thus far.

I’m grateful for the relationships we have built and nurtured over the last five years (or more) together.  Working and learning along-side you, my friends, is a true honor and I look forward to continuing these friendships and pollinations in my new role with New Belgium.

And, because I love it, I will be offering a few monthly volunteer Pollination Brainstorm Sessions to talk through your great ideas and stay engaged in your amazing projects, as well as give back to the local business community.  If you would find it useful to brainstorm, please get in touch after May 2014.  First, I’m going to take a little break while I have this little baby!

With gratitude and respect,



Please come out on Tuesday November 12 to support and learn more about the future growth plan for the Hominy Creek Greenway. Read the press release below for the full details of the Open House.

Master Plan Open House Press Release


The Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway, Inc. (FOHCG) will host the Hominy Creek Greenway Master Plan Public Input Open House from 4:00 – 7:00 PM on Tuesday, November 12 at RiverLink, located at 170 Lyman Street, Asheville. On behalf of the FOHCG and the City of Asheville, the event will present a draft Master Plan of improvements to the Hominy Creek Greenway. The public is invited to review the plan and make suggestions.

The FOHCG is a committed group of neighbors and other community leaders dedicated to creating and managing a community parkland on fourteen acres of land bordering nearly a mile ofHominy Creek in West Asheville. The FOHCG and the City of Asheville have signed a partnership agreement to collaborate on the development of the park.

Doug “Brotherhug” Barlow led the effort to protect the space after moving to West Asheville from Atlanta in 2006. “The first time I saw the land I immediately felt that it needed to be public space,” says Barlow. “Credit really goes to the hard work of many people in the community. Thanks to them we now have a magical new parkland.”

The land was purchased in February of 2011 through a coalition of the City of Asheville, Buncombe County and private funds raised by the Blue Ridge Bicycle Club, RiverLink, and individuals. The tract includes a bygone section of the world’s first hydroelectric powered trolley developed by lumber baron and developer Edwin Carrier in 1892.The FOHCG is committed to maintaining the greenway’s wild nature, preserving its history, and connecting West Asheville to the French Broad River and downtown.

For more information about the Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway or to become a member of the Friends of Hominy Creek Greenway, please contact Jack Igelman at jack@igelman.com or 828-216-0888. Or link to www.fohcg.org and the FOHCG Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/FriendsOfHominyCreekGreenway.


Last week, in the midst of the current government shutdown’s halting effect on their industry, the Asheville Brewers Alliance saw the deep effects the shutdown was having on their Western North Carolina community. As part of the Alliance’s mission to support their community, they found a way to give back: the ABA donated $1000 to the Eblen Charities’ Energy Assistance initiative, and the contribution was doubled to $2000 through the WCQS “Cut the Cold Challenge.”  

Read the press release below and then go support an ABA member to thank them for their support of those in need in our community.  Cheers and thanks, ABA!  

(Want to contribute to Eblen Charities’ Energy Assistance initiative? Learn more here.)

Asheville Brewers’ Alliance eases burden of government shutdown
October 12, 2013, Asheville, NC – Today the Asheville Brewers’ Alliance made a $1000 contribution to Eblen Charities’ Energy Assistance initiative.  That gift was matched by the Eblen/WCQS “Cut the Cold Challenge” program, doubling its impact toward cutting heating costs for people in need this winter.
John Lyda, President of the Asheville Brewers Alliance, described this initiative.
“Yes, the current government shutdown is hindering the brewing industry, but its effects are hitting some of our Western North Carolina citizens much more deeply.  Life-sustaining programs, like heating-oil subsidies, are among the initiatives that have been stopped.  The ABA has a long history of assistance in the communities that support our industry.  With cold weather bearing down upon us, we felt it was right to turn away from our issues and help those truly in need.  Eblen Charities and WCQS have graciously matched our contribution via their “Cut the Cold Challenge” program, and we hope the $2000 net impact keeps some folks warm this winter.”
About the Asheville Brewers Alliance, The Eblen Charities, and WCQS’ “Cut the Cold Challenge”
The Asheville Brewers Alliance is a non-profit group of Western NC beer industry professionals whose mission is to promote the regional brewing industry and give back to the communities that support it.  More information may be found at:  http://www.ashevillebrewersalliance.com
The Eblen Charities is a non-profit organization whose outreach extends throughout the counties of western North Carolina and through its numerous programs has helped thousands upon thousands of families each year with medical and emergency assistance.  More information may be found at:  http://www.eblencharities.org/about/
WCQS, North Carolina’s Public Radio station, and Eblen Charities, have created the “Cut the Cold Challenge” to match every contribution made toward easing heating costs for those in need.  More information may be found at:  http://wcqs.org/post/sustain-wcqs-and-cut-cold-every-gift-matched-eblen-charities


Remains postcard 2013

Shine on Brightly is an Asheville-based company that connects individuals and families who have lost a loved one and are seeking a memorial object or cremation container, with artist-made and hand-crafted memorials.

An exhibit of the work from the Shine on Brightly collection will be shown at Blue Spiral Gallery from October 10-November 30, 2013.


Canadian singer Justin Hines is a rock star.  He was also born physically disabled.  He is doing a benefit concert in Asheville on Monday September 30 as part of his “Vehicle of Change Tour.”  The proceeds will go to Mountain Housing Opportunities’ emergency home repair program and WNC Group Home’s program to send residents with Autism to summer camp. 

Learn more about Justin’s “Vehicle of Change Tour.”


Justin Hines “Vehicle of Change” Benefit Concert

for Mountain Housing Opportunities and WNC Group Homes

Monday, September 30th, Crowne Plaza Expo Center, 7pm

Adult Tickets $20 

Children 12 and under $10


Are you interested in building strong local food systems? Hear about best practices from global community organizers!


Groundswell International invites the community to a free presentation, 
Five global Groundswell community organizers will share their on-the-ground experiences in their homes countries of Burkina Faso, Ecuador, Ghana, and Haiti. The public is invited to attend the presentation, as well as the Q&A session and reception that follow.
Groundswell International is a global organization, with a base in Asheville, that generates and spreads lasting solutions to overcome poverty, inequality and ecological destruction.
Learn more about the presentation at UNC Asheville on September 18th here: http://www.groundswellinternational.org/alternate-future/

MasonGolf_Oct26The first annual West Asheville Open fundraiser is a family-friendly miniature golf tournament to benefit the construction of the Guastavino Dome for the Outdoor Experiential Learning Project at Hall Fletcher Elementary and to benefit North Carolina Masonic Charities.

Hosted by Nichols-West Asheville Masonic Lodge in collaboration with the Asheville Design Center, and sponsored by West Asheville businesses, WAVL Open takes place Saturday, October 26, 2013 September 21, 2013 at Tropical Gardens on Patton Avenue and 100% of profits are shared between recipients.

The WAVL Open purpose is three-fold: to strengthen relationships among neighbors, to support worthwhile non-profit projects, and to highlight the role West Asheville businesses and organizations play in our community.

The WAVL Open offers three round choices: 11:00 a.m. (young family round); 1:00 p.m.  (adult round) and 3:00 p.m. (competitive round)

Your team can include between 1 and 5 members and costs $10/person.  If your team is a 1-2 person team, you may be paired with another 1 to 2 person team.  Registration is first-come, first-served. SIGNING UP in advance is strongly recommended. Doc Brown’s BBQ truck will be on hand to purchase lunch or snacks.





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