Full Hearts, Empty Classrooms

The doors of the brand new South Lakes Elementary School in Fuquay-Varina should have been opening to students in a matter of days; would have been opening — in any other year but this one.

Instead, students enrolled at South Lakes will begin the year with instruction online-only, as will thousands of other students across... Read More

Doggone Famous

“He’s amazingly famous,” says Holly Springs fire fighter Joe Harasti, affectionately patting the head of a slightly goofy, curly-haired, black Australian Labradoodle who looks adoringly back at him.

Harasti is referring to Cinder the fire dog, who serves the town of Holly Springs as Harasti’s full-time assistant, teaching fire prevention and safety. You may recognize... Read More

Making Joyful Sounds

When Diana Thomas opened Joyful Sounds Academy of Music & Arts more than 30 years ago, she had no idea it would have such an enduring imprint on the community. Throughout the last three decades, Thomas has taught hundreds of students — young and old alike — to play the piano. Her academy also offers... Read More

Point. Click. Post.

Since we spent the spring homeschooling, baking bread and generally not leaving the house (except our essential workers — thank you!), let’s spend the summer getting reacquainted with all the charm southern Wake has at hand.

From abstract murals to historic homes, these perfectly-Instagrammable destinations are calling.

Cultivate Coffee Mural

Artist Jason Clark approached... Read More

Food & Dining

Time for a Reset

Raw juicing seems like a modern health phenomenon, but it isn’t for Holly Springs resident Laura Arrieta.

“I grew up with it,” Laura says.

As a teenager, Laura’s mother suffered from an undiagnosed illness, until a homeopathic specialist prescribed herbal supplements and raw juicing.

In a few months, she was “completely back to normal,” Laura... Read More

Southern Basil Farmhouse Ale from Fullsteam Brewery

’Tis the Season: With origins in the southern region of Belgium, farmhouse ales were traditionally brewed in the late winter. The beer was conditioned until summer to be a refreshing and low-alcohol drink for the farm hands during summer work. Each farm used its own grain, yeast and hops, so every farm had a different... Read More

Life & Style

Community Pet Parade


Here is Sophie, the kitten we adopted at the start of the coronavirus pandemic, and therefore affectionately nicknamed, Corona kitty.

– Jonathan Fredin, Raleigh

Roger & Lily

We had every intention of just fostering these twin 3-week- old foundlings. However, they soon found a place in our hearts with their quirky, yet distinct personalities.... Read More

Meet & Greet: Shane Brown and James Cook

Shane Brown Owner, Extraordinary Cuts First Barbershop Experience: In Sanford at Mr. Reeves Barbershop. Not only was he my barber, but he was also the barber of the guy who taught me. His shop has been there 100 years. It was a traditional barber shop. When I wanted a design for my head, he said... Read More

Home & Garden

Fall for the Veggie Garden

It’s August, and it’s hot. It is also a time of opportunity in the ol’ veggie patch. Even with fall right around the corner, there are still plenty of growing days left to plant another round of summer vegetables, and, in spite of the heat, cool-season edibles can start to come out and play in... Read More

Heuchera: The Evolution of Pretty

Not to dilute the works of Charles Darwin, but, to me, evolution in the garden often means the simple progression of pretty to prettier. A good example of my thin theory is heuchera (Heuchera sp.), also called alum root or coral bells.

Heuchera is a native American plant that, in the 1600s, caught the eyes... Read More


Make Your Escape

Need to escape? (That was rhetorical; of course you do.) Consider these picturesque North Carolina destinations for a much-needed weekend away from reality. Blowing Rock

Escape summer’s heat with the winds of The Blowing Rock, a cliff overhanging the Johns River Gorge 3,000 feet below and North Carolina’s oldest travel attraction. The mountain outcrop received... Read More

There & Back: Pick Them Apples

Don’t be deceived by the glossy piles of fruit available year-round in the grocery store. Apple season doesn’t officially begin in North Carolina until mid-August. And if you’re willing to invest a few hours of driving and picking, the state’s best apples can be yours.

Most of the state’s apples are grown in Henderson County,... Read More