Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 22

COUNTRY ROADS

New Festival Puts Bigfoot
in the Spotlight
The New York Times
gave the Battle of
Blair Mountain
front-page coverage
in 1921.

West Virginia's Blair Mountain
Protected Once Again
After a decade-long legal battle, the Keeper
of the National Register of Historic Places
has announced the addition of 1,600 acres
of rugged West Virginia land to the register
to honor another battle almost a century
ago. The listing will protect the site-sacred
to many coal miners -from mountaintop
removal mining and other development. In
1921, some 10,000 armed miners clashed
with local lawmen and company agents over
the right to unionize. The week-long fracas
on Blair Mountain remains the largest armed
insurrection in the U.S. since the Civil War. The
battle ended when federal troops arrived and
the miners dispersed and though they were
defeated, the battle helped raise awareness
of dire conditions for workers in Appalachia's
coalfields and eventually led to stronger unions. Fast forward to
2008, when the site was listed on the historic register, but then
de-listed at West Virginia's request soon after, putting it at risk
of mining. A coalition of local groups and environmental
organizations took the issue to court, where it journeyed
through twists and turns until the announcement
on June 27 adding it back to the national register.
"I am so proud of the many who have been fighting this modern day battle for years and those who
still fight for their rights to deserving pensions, honor, respect,
and a quality of life," said Natalie Thompson of Ohio Valley
Environmental Coalition whose great-grandfather fought in the
Battle of Blair Mountain. wvhighlands.org; crmw.net; sierraclub.org/west-virginia -CAT MCCUE

The historic site, where
minors and lawmen
clashed in 1921, has been
put back on the National
Register of Historic
Places.

22

BLUERIDGECOUNTRY.COM

If you ask John Bruner if Bigfoot exists, he'll tell you
about an encounter he had in August 2017 near
Lake James in McDowell County, North Carolina.
Apparently Bigfoot creatures are fascinated by
glow sticks-the kind children like to wave around
or snap around their wrists. John's team went on
expedition and put out a variety of glow sticks.
When the glow sticks went dark, they could tell that
something was walking in front of them. John and
his son ran closer and came within 25 yards of a
creature that John describes as between 8 ½ and 9
feet tall. "It had long, stringy, matted hair like a wet
dog," he says. "There wasn't any hair on its face and
its nose was completely flat. You could almost see
up its nostrils. It never opened its mouth and it was
not the least bit intimidated. It casually turned and
walked off the side of the hill."
The search for Bigfoot is a big topic of conversation near Marion, North Carolina, and this year
Bruner is spearheading the first WNC Bigfoot Festival on Saturday, September 8, from noon to 6 p.m.
The festival, held in downtown Marion, features
a Bigfoot calling contest, Bigfoot knocking contest (they apparently communicate through tree
knocks), food, kids' activities, arts and crafts and
expedition evidence including cast prints and audio/
video of sightings. Bruner says the best experts in
N.C. will be on hand to answer questions about
Bigfoot. There's even a raffle drawing for two people
to go out on expedition with John's crew as they
continue the hunt.
Bruner runs the Bigfoot
911 group on Facebook and says he gets
messages constantly
from those who believe
they've spotted a Bigfoot.
"The Native Americans lived
with them for thousands of
years and documented it,"
he says. "A lot of people
think it's a hoax, but
if it's a hoax it's
been passed
on by people
who don't
know each
other for thousands of years."
For additional details on
the festival: facebook.com/
wncbigfootfestival/
-MARLA HARDEE MILLING


http://www.facebook.com/wncbigfootfestival/ http://www.wvhighlands.org http://www.crmw.net http://www.club.org/west-virginia http://www.BLUERIDGECOUNTRY.COM

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018

Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 3
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 4
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 5
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 6
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 7
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 8
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 9
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 10
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 11
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 12
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 13
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 14
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 15
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 16
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 17
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 18
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 19
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 20
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 21
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 22
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 23
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 24
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 25
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 26
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 27
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 28
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 29
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 30
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 31
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Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 33
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 34
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 35
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 36
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 37
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Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 39
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 40
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 41
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Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 71
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 72
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 73
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - 74
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country - September/October 2018 - Cover4
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