By Bob Keith

Mayor of Lake Lure, NC

It’s that season again…… “Election Time”.

Yup! I tossed my hat in the ring again and as of the writing of this article I am running unopposed. That, of course, could change if someone steps forward to run. We will just have to wait and see.

Running for the two open Commissioner positions are incumbent Bob Cameron, Electrical Contractor, Patricia Maringer, B and B Owner and member of the Board of Adjustments Committee and Lake Structures Appeals Board, and Steve Webber, Chairman of the Board of Adjustments Committee and Lake Structures Appeals Board. Good luck to all and thanks for your involvement and commitment to our community.

For me personally, this would make my fourth, two-year term. I’ve learned a lot as Mayor, met some wonderful people and hopefully have accomplished some things that have made Lake Lure a better place to live. But on top of that, we have in front of us such a bright future. The economy is improving. Town-to-town and cross-county communications have never been better.

Take a quick tour with me. The Flowering Bridge is unique and exquisite, attracting people from all over the world. Lake Lure Classical Academy is about to open its permanent site with an ever-increasing enrollment and high level of achievement. The MAHEC Medical Facility is functioning well and struggling to keep up with the demand. A good problem to have, I might add. Economic activity in our restaurants and retail shops is the best in years. The Tryon Equestrian Center has brought new vitality and opportunities to the area. The reconstituted, energetic Chamber continues to seek partners for retirement facilities, a microbrewery and numerous other commercial entities. We are attracting more athletes here for hiking, biking, running, rock climbing and all of the lake activities of swimming, kayaking, wakeboarding and water skiing. This month features the Olympiad Sports Festival (8/14-16), the Mystic Waters Pro-Am Waterski Festival (8/22), Dirty Dancing Festival (8/14-15) and Chimney Rock Music Night at the Gathering Place (8/27) to name a few.

There is so much happening locally. I urge as many of you local residents to get involved in what is going on. I have lived in many other places during my life but I’ve never seen such a spirit of volunteerism and giving back to the community as exists here in Hickory Nut Gorge. I encourage all to participate and help me (if elected) along with everyone on Town staff to make this a better place to live, work and play.

Just a couple of parting shots. First, the LLCA “ribbon-cutting” will be held on August 18th at 10am at the new school. Patrick McHenry, US Representative and Lt Gov Dan Forest will be our featured dignitaries. Come on out for this momentous occasion.

Second, we need kayakers to monitor the swim portion of the Triathlon and the Open Water Swim on 8/15. BYOK. Bring your own kayak or use one of the Resort’s. We need volunteers for both events. It’s great fun! Call Barbi Snyder at 625-4932.

And finally, our community lost a special, local character, long-term resident and good friend, Jeff Benson, a few weeks back. We all mourn with and pray for his wife Susan and family, Dakota, Lauren, Rachal and Kendal.