Rolling with Stone

By Jessi Stone Guide editor | May 29, 2013
Photo by: Jessi Stone

I am amazed every week as I continue to meet interesting people who are doing great things in Haywood County. And this week was no exception.


Cedar Hill Studio

On Tuesday I walked next door on Main Street to interview local artist Gretchen Clasby. She is working hard to get her new gallery, Cedar Hill Studio, open for the public. If you haven’t already, please stop by Cedar Hill and all the other wonderful galleries in downtown Waynesville to explore all the beautiful art that is being produced locally.

It’s wonderful that Clasby is trying to give new and seasoned artists a place to show their work to the public. And in such a beautiful space! Her own fine artwork also is displayed and her popular Sonshine Promises line is available for purchase. These include illustrated scriptures that make wonderful gifts. You can read more about Gretchen’s inspirational story on page 10.


New children’s book

On Wednesday, I met with Anna Browning and Josh Crawford to talk about their new children’s book “Tanner Turbeyfill and the Moon Rocks” that was published recently. These are two 2005 Haywood County graduates (Anna graduated from Pisgah and Crawford graduated from Tuscola) that have created a wonderful, imaginative story for children!

Anna’s story is original and would be wonderful in the classroom for teaching students not only about science and astronomy, but also about dreaming big and imagination. Josh’s illustrations are incredible — the colors and the detail. Be sure to stop by their book release party from 4 to 5 p.m. June 1 at The Vine, located at 188 Depot Street in Waynesville.

Congratulations to them on an incredible accomplishment at such a young age. It should be inspiring to the rest of us who have been working on the next great novel for years but don’t seem to ever find the time to finish it — yes, I’m talking to all you procrastinators out there (myself included).

If you can’t make it, you should definitely go to and purchase their book for your favorite teacher, child, grandchild, niece or nephew.


Tuscola art garden

Donna Rhodes, the art teacher at Tuscola High School, is retiring this year and by the looks on her students’ faces Tuesday, I can tell she is going to be deeply missed. The E Building at Tuscola held a grand opening celebration Tuesday for its art garden, which Rhodes was instrumental in making happen.

She brought together many of the vocational classes to put the art garden together and it truly is a beautiful little corner for all students to use as a quiet and inspiring place to work and play. The masonry class built a beautiful brick sculpture that resembles a DNA strand (You’d just have to see it), the metals class constructed a metal arch with Greek gods holding a banner that reads “Get Your Muse On,” the agriculture class did the beautiful landscaping and the art students all helped create a sculpture using their individual Repoussé pieces.

It’s something they can all be proud of and something Rhodes considers an important part of her legacy. You can find a photo of the garden on page 4 but you need to see it in person to appreciate all the hard work that went into it.



I also want to thank people who help me with great story ideas and submit interesting things for The Guide. Richard Ploch of Waynesville attended the John C. Campbell Folk School recently for a woodworking class and was kind enough to share his experience and photos with the rest of us for The Guide. If you haven’t been to the school — there are countless opportunities to learn something new. Thank you to Steven Lloyd with HART for keeping us updated on the theater’s plans for expansion this week and also for providing wonderful entertainment for our community. And thank you to Dr. John Highsmith for submitting the amazing photo of the double rainbow over HART that is on the cover this week.

If you have a story idea for The Guide or a beautiful photo depicting life in Haywood County – please email me at

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