Category: blog (32)

On Thursday, October 19th, at five o’clock in the evening, a competitive and talented group of home chefs will go head-to-head in a friendly competition for the trophy and title of Landmark Realty Group’s Chili Cook-off winner!

People’s taste in chili is a subjective thing: beans vs. no beans, meat vs. vegetarian, hot vs. spicy, and red vs. white. And while some of us may have definite beliefs about what we think should go into the chili, all of us can agree we really just want it to taste good.

Each year for the past eleven years, we have partnered with the Cashiers Area Chamber of Commerce in this fun, free event to ask the residents, businesses, and visitors of our community to vote on which chili offered at our cook-off is their favorite. As our guests, all you need to bring is yourself, an adventurous spirit, and, of course, your taste buds. We will provide the drinks (beer, wine, and bottled water), the toppings, cornbread, the voting tickets, and most importantly, the chili!

The Chili Cook-off takes place next to Landmark Realty Group’s office at 49 Frank Allen Road in Cashiers. We will have a tent set up in between our office and The Ugly Dog Pub, so plan on joining us rain or shine. And may the best chef win!

This Sunday, May 8, 2016 is Mother’s Day. Celebrate Mom and all she’s done for you. You haven’t forgotten, have you? If so, read on for some ideas…

TAKE MOM OUT. Don’t make Mom a meal at home; she’ll only have to clean up behind you after you’ve “cleaned up” and that’s no way to spend her special day! Take her out to a lovely brunch or dinner at one of the area’s great restaurants. You can be sure she’s treated like a queen! Get in touch with Mom’s favorite restaurant and make a reservation if required.

ADMIRE BEAUTY. Weather permitting, take a stroll around town to admire the spring blooms that are currently popping out all over. You could also take her to see the majesty of Dry Falls or another waterfall in the area. If the weather is uncooperative, or if you’d rather be inside, visit the Bascom and wander through their galleries.

SPOIL HER. Flowers and gifts are a nice way to show Mom you love her. From a single red rose to a grand bouquet of cut blossoms, it’s hard to go wrong with flowers. If your mother is a gardener, maybe she would prefer a plant she could place in her garden. If she is a cook, a couple of small potted herbs would be nice to have for her kitchen window.

SPOIL HER SOME MORE. Being a mother is hard work, so give her time to relax. A gift certificate from a local spa or salon is a fantastic present! No matter if it is a gift certificate for a mani/pedi or an entire day’s pampering package, there will be an option to fit your budget.

THE BEST GIFT OF ALL AND IT’S FREE. Simply tell her you love her and how much she means to you. Then do that chore she’s been nagging you about.

Happy Mother’s Day from all of us at Landmark Realty Group!

2016An old fashioned Easter is deeply embedded in the culture of many southern Christian families. Easter is the most holy of Christian holidays, a symbol of new beginnings, and a time to socialize with family and friends.  

The way this holiday is celebrated holds a great deal of importance to southerners- tradition and beliefs are integral parts. Before church, children find Easter baskets filled with goodies carefully curated by the Easter Bunny- chocolate bunnies or eggs, plastic eggs filled with jelly beans and the occasional dollar, a small stuffed animal, stickers, sidewalk chalk, and maybe a new movie. The highlight of Easter is time spent at church. A popular tradition is known as the “flowering of the Easter cross”.  It’s a custom where each worshiper is invited to place a fresh flower upon the cross at the altar and to have a moment of reflection and reverence for the meaning of the day.  Eventually, the cross is completely covered in beautiful blooms- a symbol of sacrifice transforms into something beautiful and new in celebration of the religious significance of Easter.

After attending church, families- donning new dresses and suits- gather around tables set with stoneware plates (possibly Louisville Stoneware) filled with ham drizzled with a brown sugar glaze, dark green turnip greens soaked in a rich pork stock, creamy potatoes whipped to perfection, and, of course, deviled eggs- simply egg yolks, mayonnaise (Duke’s, always Duke’s), mustard, and a sprinkle of paprika. After Easter dinner, bellies are full. And spirits soar. Maybe it’s the promise of warmer days and happy memories yet to be made or perhaps it’s a renewal of Christian faith. Children, baskets in hand, dash to the yard in search of the Easter eggs they helped dye the night before. Now days, there are kits that make it easy to glitter and glitz your eggs but egg dying used to be an art form that took hours or a few days to complete. Eggs decorated in celebration of rebirth peek from beneath bright yellow forsythia bushes and behind daffodils and crocus flowers. Moms and dads chase behind their little ones in hopes of capturing a precious picture for their scrapbook.

This year Easter is on Sunday, March 27th. If you are in Highlands or Cashiers on Easter weekend, there are several ways that your family can celebrate.  

EASTER WEEKEND

AT THE VILLAGE GREEN- CASHIERS

S’more Kids Klothes Easter Egg Hunt 11 a.m. Saturday, March 26th

Community Easter Sunrise Service 7 a.m. Sunday, March 27 at the Gazebo and lawn

AT THE RECREATION CENTER -HIGHLANDS

Easter Egg Hunt 11 a.m. Saturday, March 26th

How does your family celebrate Easter? What is your favorite tradition?

SpringThe start of Daylight Savings Time is Sunday at 2 a.m., which means one hour of daylight is switched from morning to evening. If you ever wondered who is to blame or er, to whom credit for the idea should be bestowed for this rite of spring, that would be Mr. Sensible himself, Benjamin Franklin. He thought that it would be an economical way to reduce the cost of light. But the change wasn’t implemented until World War I as a way to save on energy costs. President Johnson signed the Uniform Time Act in 1966 making daylight savings time official, but the act allows states and territories to opt out of the time switcheroo if they choose- Hawaii and Arizona do not observe daylight savings.

Some experts on sleep advise to begin imagining that it’s Daylight Savings on Friday and then you will have two days to get accustomed to the idea over the weekend and will be less likely to have problems on Monday morning.

What do you think of Daylight Savings Time? Do you have any strategies for making up for the lost hour of sleep?

 

 

 

12688270_10100733955634262_623523144115849047_nNothing is more romantic than a weekend in the mountains to celebrate Valentine’s Day, which is this Sunday, February 14th (hint, hint, in case you blanked). While it may be winter, that doesn’t mean that your entire romantic weekend has to be sequestered indoors. Here are some fun and romantic date options for Valentine’s Day.

Outdoors Date Ideas:

 Sunrise Rock breakfast– Bundle up in your warm winter coat, gloves, hat, scarf, and boots then pack some orange juice and a muffin to enjoy while you watch the sunrise together at Sunrise Rock at Ravenel Park, just off of Main Street in Highlands. Make sure you have a flashlight, blankets to sit down on, and a small bag for your trash. You can find the road up to the park is directly across from the Highlands Biological Station. There is limited parking available.

 Stargazing– Just as mornings are majestic in the mountains, stargazing doesn’t get much better. On a clear cold evening, snuggling up and picking out the constellations is very romantic. If you look at accuweather.com, there is a stargazing forecast. It looks like the best time this weekend to stargaze will be Saturday evening. Sunset Rock, also in Ravenel Park, is a lovely option for stargazing. Just be sure to dress in warm layers.

To locate the trail take Main Street, which becomes Horse Cove Road, east from the intersection of Highways 28 and 64 in Highlands, 0.5 mile to the Highlands Nature Center. Park here and follow the sign indicating a gravel road to Sunset Rock and Ravenel Park. The road ends at a monument for Ravenel Park. Sunset Rock is to the right.

 Ice Skating– Did you know that Highlands has a brand new ice skating rink in Founders Park in Highlands? Ice skating is so much fun, so romantic and definitely will get you cold enough to want to curl up in front of the fire. The Highlands ice skating rink rents skates and coffee and hot cocoa are available to warm you up.

Hours of Operation (through mid to late February):
Thursdays: 1-8 PM
Fridays & Saturdays: 1-10 PM
Sundays: 1-5 PM

 Price:
$5.00 (with or without skate rentals)
Rental skates available, youth size 8 to adult size 14.
Coffee and Hot Chocolate are also available.
For more information, call 828-526-3556

 

Each year, Highlands is filled with Christmas joy after Thanksgiving. The town Christmas tree is lit, the streets are lined with festive holiday wreaths, and shoppers fill the boutiques in search of the perfect gifts to go under the family tree. Highlands is a town where annual traditions such as the Highlands Olde Mountain Christmas Parade add to the comfort and joy of the season. Though the trees may be bare and the temperatures cooler, little can suppress the excitement that electrifies the town on the day of the parade. This year, as in years past, the Olde Fashioned Christmas parade will proceed down Main Street beginning at 11 am, this Saturday, December 5, 2015. A live nativity complete with camels, the dancing ladies of the Mountain Garden Club, local organizations, and of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus, will entertain the crowds lining the sidewalks of Main Street. After the parade, which ends at noon, Santa will be available to visit with children on the hill outside the First Baptist Church, directly across the street from Landmark Realty Group office. Make sure to bring your camera for a photo keepsake of the parade, which is sure to become a family tradition. After the kids visit Santa, stop over to Landmark Realty Group, at 225 Main Street to say hello and take a peek at our winter white Christmas tree.

 2Oak Crest 829 Foreman Road MLS # 82307

If you asked anyone about town the history of Highlands, you might hear a variety of rich stories. Some might tell you about how Kelsey and Hutchinson got a map, drew some lines, and the result was Highlands. Others might tell you that Highlands was a respite for the ill and point out “Bug Hill,” where Dr. Mary Lapham, a pioneer in the treatment of tuberculosis, prescribed rest, fresh air, and sunshine for her patients in the early 1900s. You might also hear about the dances held at Helen’s Barn, where square dancing and mountain clogging thrived in Highlands for more than 50 years. Memories were made and enduring friendship blossomed at Helen’s barn. But there’s a “silent” history behind those well-known stories.

The history of Highlands would not be complete without looking into the provenances of the homes that make up this community and the people who called them home. Living in Highlands NC has always been full of charm. Buyers and sellers alike can find  out the fascinating history of a home with just a little bit of research. A house may not be on the tourist map as a heritage building or famous landmark, but rest assured every house has a history. Finding out when a home was built, who lived there, and how they changed it can be an amazing journey. A home’s architectural history will tell you about the times in which it was built; the social history traces the occupants of the house over time. Do you know how your home adds to the history of your community? You might be surprised at what you find out!

Click here to read the The History of Oakcrest  Continue reading ..

 

Chili Cookoff 2015 Invite(3)

When: Wednesday, October 22, 2015 5pm to 7:30pm

What: 9th Annual Chili Cook Off

Where: Landmark Realty Group, 49 Frank Allen Road, Cashiers

A simmering pot of chili is a surefire way to warm up any occasion; it’s the quintessential recipe for family meals and for entertaining guests. Chili tastes are highly personal, often uncompromising and loaded with notions linked to childhood comfort and regional origin. Debate over chili preference can be just as lively as a political debate.

With beans or without? Meat filled or vegetarian? Should it be served with cornbread or over spaghetti? With corn chips or just a dab of sour cream?Knock your socks off spicy or with cumin kick?

Chili, like barbecue, is put through hundreds of chili cook-offs across the country, most of them with a series of rules and guidelines for judgment. No matter your particular serving ritual or the secret recipe, chili in its every form will be available at the 9th Annual Landmark Realty Group Chili Cook-off on Thursday, October 22, 2015. The winner of the cook-off will receive a trophy that they will keep until the next cook-off.

This year’s event will include music from local favorite Nitrograss. Admission is free for Landmark brokers & staff, Cashiers Chamber of Commerce members, or for Landmark clients & invited guests. For other attendees, there is a $10 fee that is charged by the Chamber which is applied towards your membership if you join the Chamber during the party.

 

 

 

 

 

leaf_fest_web_2015_1

If you are looking for things to do near Highlands NC this weekend, celebrate autumn in Cashiers with the 7th annual Cashiers Valley Leaf Festival October 9th, 10th, and 11th. This year’s festival expects to welcome more than 100 artisans and craftsman from the southeast as they sell their wares in the Village Green from 10 to 5 each day. All three days, in addition to shopping, there will be food, drink, and live music.

 

Friday, October 9 Village Commons Stage

6:30 to 9:30 Dance Party with Continental Divide Band

Saturday, October 10 Village Green Gazebo Stage

11 to 12:30 Julie Gribble

1 to 2:30 Shawn James

3 to 4:30 Breedlove Brothers

Saturday, October 10 Village Green Gazebo Stage

11 to 12:30 Beth Turner

3 to 4:30     David Teague

Sunday, October 11 Village Commons Stage

12:30 to 3 Steve Johannessen

While you are at the Cashiers Valley Leaf Festival , drop by the Landmark Realty Group tent to say hello to the Landmark Team  and pick up the new Fall/ Winter Real Estate Collection magazine!

 

 

“Listen! The wind is rising, and the air is wild with leaves, we have had our summer evenings, now for October Eves!”
         -Humbert Wolfe

The Cashiers Farmers Market boasts a dreamy collection of pumpkins. 828-743-4334

The spirit of fall is scurrying across the Plateau. Though the official autumnal equinox arrived on September 23rd, the urge to don a sweater, make a big pot of chili, and welcome guests with a warm, autumn-inspired porch has been hard to resist since Labor Day. Fall is a remarkable event in Highlands and Cashiers. The farmer’s markets are teeming with a menagerie of gourds and pumpkins: large, small, perfect and irregular, bumpy and smooth, white, orange, and striped.

Fall is full of traditions – including leaf looking. Dr. Kathy Mathews, an associate professor of biology at Western Carolina University, specializes in plant systematics and makes her annual prediction of how foliage around the region will perform this year. Mathews bases her color forecast on both earlier and predicted weather conditions. She says that the formation of higher levels of pigments in the leaves correlates with dry weather throughout the year, most especially in fall.

“This fall could be one of the best leaf color seasons in Western North Carolina in recent memory,” Mathews said. “Three words explain it – unusually dry weather.” Visitors can look for leaves to be peaking in color intensity a few days after the first reported frost in any particular area, she said.

When the “peak color” occurs is dependent upon the decreasing amount of sunlight that comes with the passing days, plus the elevation of a particular location.

When to see the leaves:
• the first and second week of October in the highest elevations above 4,000 feet
• the third week of October in the mid-elevations 2,500 to 3,500 feet

Must-see views:
• Near Highlands and Cashiers, Whiteside Mountain is a can’t miss spectacular with the natural phenomenon known as “the Bear Shadow” during the last two weeks of October, when the sun sets behind Whiteside Mountain and its shadow creates a perfect image of a black bear among the tops of the vibrant trees.
• Dry Falls is a waterfall on the Cullasaja River located in the Nantahala National Forest, just northwest of Highlands. Dry Falls flows over an overhanging bluff that allows visitors to walk up under the falls and not get too wet, hence the name.

If this year’s predictions are correct, autumn might be giving summer a challenge for the title of Highlands and Cashiers’ most beautiful season.