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LOCAL BRIEFS: Running, Sandburg value, teen vaccines, HSO grant

Cross Country series under way


Foot Rx, an Asheville running store, will host its Annual Cross Country Series beginning Wednesday, July 30, at Asheville School and continuing through November.
The cross country races are 3.1-mile courses that cover a variety of terrain including, pavement, grass, gravel and mulch. The series is open for students and adults. Participants may register for one race at a time or all of the races. To compete in the series, each runner must run in five of the eight races. Participants are awarded points based on their finishing place for each race.
Races will take place in Hendersonville, Asheville and Brevard.
Proceeds will go to the RUN828 Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes and supports healthy activities in WNC.
To register or learn more visit

Big Brothers seeks volunteers

Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Henderson County is seeking volunteers to provide one-on-one mentoring to single-parent elementary age children who live in poverty.
In the traditional community program, Bigs (role models) and Littles go on one-to-one outings and activities that they enjoy together.
Volunteers in the school-based program spend a few hours a month doing both nonacademic and academic activities on school grounds with the child. In Henderson county BBBS presently has close to 70 matches but has more children in need of a Big Brother or Big Sister. Studies show that with mentors children improve in school and in their relationships with family and friends, are less likely to skip school or use illegal drugs and gain greater confidence and self-esteem.
Contact Jeff Kowalak at (828) 693-8153 to volunteer or learn more.

Public health agency offering teen vaccines

School nurses from the Department of Public Health will offer Tdap vaccinations and other recommended adolescent vaccines from 3 to 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 31, and Thursday, Aug. 14, at the health department's walk-in Immunization Clinic. No appointment is needed. North Carolina law requires public school students entering sixth grade to receive a Tdap vaccine, a booster against tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis.
The vaccine is provided at no cost for children without health insurance. The health department will bill insurance for students with BCBS of NC, MedCost, United Health Care, Medicaid or Health Choice. Bring a copy of the insurance card or Medicaid card to the clinic. All others must pay $60, payable by check, Visa, MasterCard or Discover.
Other recommended vaccines for adolescents include: human papilloma virus (HPV), meningococcal conjugate and flu. Parents and guardians should check that their teen received all recommended childhood vaccines. Two other recommended vaccines are hepatitis A and the second dose of the chickenpox vaccine.
Adolescent vaccines are also available on weekdays 8-11:30 a.m. and 1-4 p.m. in the Immunization Clinic. For more information about required immunizations, call (828) 694-6015 or visit

Sandburg visitors spent $4.5 million

FLAT ROCK — The Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site drew 81,711 visitors who spent $4.5 million in communities near the park last year, accounting for 65 jobs, the National Park Service said.
The peer-reviewed visitor spending analysis conducted for the National Park Service by U.S. Geological Survey economists showed $14.6 billion of direct spending by 273.6 million park visitors in communities within 60 miles of a national park. This spending supported more than 237,000 jobs nationally, with more than 197,000 jobs found in these gateway communities, and had a cumulative benefit to the U.S. economy of $26.5 billion, the park service said. Carl Sandburg Home National Historic Site is a unit of the National Park Service.

TD Bank gives HSO $2,500 grant



0730HSOgrantpicBill Humleker accepts a check from Chip Morris of TD Bank.TD Charitable Foundation awarded a $2,500 grant to the Hendersonville Symphony Orchestra to support the Instrumental Ensemble Program and Summer Strings Workshops, part of the HSO youth outreach in Henderson County. Chip Morris of TD Bank presented the check to HSO Executive Director Bill Humleker. Since 1972, the HSO has offered the Instrumental Ensemble Program to more than 3,500 children each year.