Archive for February, 2010

Did you hear the one about Asheville’s comedy scene?

What a laugh! If you want to exercise your chuckle or chortle, get yourself to one of Asheville’s comedy events. Asheville is home to a new comedy club, a couple of comedy troupes and several big annual comedy events.

No joke. When you stay at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, you’re 10 minutes from all of this funny stuff.

Located in one of the architectural gems downtown, Asheville’s Funny Business club offers a variety of entertainers, most of whom have appeared on television or with such big names as Bill Cosby and Joan Rivers.

The LYLAS (Love Ya Like A Sis), an all-female sketch comedy group, cracks up audiences with skits and wry observations that sometimes poke fun at Asheville’s sacred cows. Their shows are witty and wacky and a real treat for the sell-out crowds they draw.

The Feral Chihuahuas is another sketch comedy group in Asheville that spreads its zany brand of humor all over the city.

One of the annual comedy events in Asheville is the Grove Park Inn’s Comedy Classic Weekend, to be held March 12-14 this year.

There’s also the Laugh Your Asheville Off annual festival, July 15-17 this year. The Asheville Community Theatre has a late-night comedy series each summer.

Get your laugh on in Asheville!

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Lovers’ Loop Retreat March Muse-letter

With March about to explode into life, we say, bring it on! March is one of our very favorite months here in North Carolina at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville B&B alternative. In March, Daylight Saving Time starts, so we have more daylight at the end of the day; spring begins and the hammock beckons; we can still see the mountains from our property; and Lovers’ Loop Retreat is decorated with the yellow of forsythia and daffodils dotted around. What treats!

             Asheville is a treat to visit year-round, and there are lots of activities to check out in March, from the Harlem Globetrotters and women’s roller derby to the Jewish film festival and the organic growers’ conference to the Moody Blues, Arlo Guthrie and Ani DiFranco (not in concert together!). Add some contemporary ballet, a little vaudeville and a fascinating orchid show, and there’s a lot to choose from. Just about any time is a great time to hike, bike, bird watch, wildflower hunt, kayak and otherwise wander along the Blue Ridge Parkway and elsewhere in the mountains and rivers around Asheville. Make Lovers’ Loop Retreat your convenient and homey base when you sample Asheville’s sights and sounds.

            Events are posted through the year on our Web site, http://www.loversloopretreat.com/, and we update the site regularly. We’ve just added a bunch of events to the site. Use the Web site to check out what’s going on whenever you plan your trip to Asheville and Lovers’ Loop Retreat. 

            For starters, timeless troubadour Arlo Guthrie and his family will perform March 3-4 at Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville. March 6-7 brings the return of the Organic Growers’ School Spring Conference, which claims to be the Southeast’s biggest sustainable-living conference. The conference, in Asheville, offers tons of workshops and classes on a huge range of sustainable issues: small-scale wind energy; growing truffles, shiitake mushrooms, hops and grapes; making compost toilet systems and solar food dehydrators.

            March 12 will bring Bela Fleck back to Asheville at the Orange Peel. He’ll be followed by Ani DiFranco at the Orange Peel March 13-14. The annual comedy weekend at Asheville’s Grove Park Inn will be March 12-13.

            For more laughs and eye-opening entertainment, check out the Blue Ridge Roller Girls, Asheville’s roller derby team, March 13 as they open their season at the Asheville Civic Center. The Harlem Globetrotters will swoosh and strut at the Asheville Civic Center on March 14.

            The annual Asheville Jewish Film Festival will run March 13-18.

            March 21 will bring the Moody Blues to the Thomas Wolfe Auditorium at the Asheville Civic Center.

            An event we really dig is the annual orchid show at the North Carolina Arboretum, held March 27-28 this year. Go and get an eyeful of these amazing plants.

            There’s a variety of other musical and dance entertainment in March at the Diana Wortham Theatre downtown and other venues.

            April in Asheville kicks off with the Biltmore estate’s enchanting Festival of Flowers, which begins April 3 and lasts into May. Also in April are humorist David Sedaris, herbs, birds, an art safari and the opera “Carmen.”                  

            All of these events and activities and more are listed on our Web site. Please pass along our muse-letter to your friends. And join us at Lovers’ Loop Retreat. See you in Asheville!

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Asheville’s French Broad River revealed by bus or on foot

The long and mighty French Broad River, which cuts through Asheville and much of western North Carolina on its way to Tennessee, is popular with kayakers, canoeists, fishers and others. It’s one of the world’s oldest rivers. The nonprofit RiverLink, based in Asheville, works to preserve and clean the river and to support responsible economic development along the river.

RiverLink sponsors monthly bus tours throughout the year. Having been on the tour, we know that it’s packed with interesting information about Asheville’s history that you might not learn elsewhere. The tour leaves from downtown Asheville, just 10 minutes from Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville vacation rental.

RiverLink also sponsors walking tours along the French Broad, and the organization has developed a greenway for biking and walking that goes through several Asheville parks.

When you stay at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, make a point to find the French Broad for birding, water sports, biking, hiking. And bring your toys with you. We have plenty of room for kayaks, canoes, fishing gear, bikes and other equipment.

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More Valentine’s weekend festivities in Asheville

            Here are a few more Valentine’s-related events happening in Asheville (see our blog posted Feb. 2). Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, is close to each of these activities.

            Heads up to a chocolate and wine tasting on Friday, Feb. 12 at Malaprop’s, the popular independent bookseller that’s part of downtown’s heartbeat. Malaprop’s does things with style, so this no doubt will be a fun event. Who can resist two of life’s finer tastes?

            For some laughter with your love, check out the Feral Chihuahuas Valentine’s show on Friday, Feb. 12 and Saturday, Feb. 13 at the new Funny Business Comedy Club downtown. The Feral Chihuahuas are local comedians who have built a following, both local and afar. The group just played at the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival.

            Experience a lighthearted evening with cabaret-style burlesque entertainment with the Bombs Away Cabaret. Their show on Feb. 12 and Feb. 13, “Eat Your Heart Out: A Knockout Thriller”, at the Asheville Arts Center is a mix of theater that will keep your blood pumping.

            Enjoy your Cupid weekend in Asheville!

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Celebrate your Valentine spirit in Asheville

Valentine’s Day is not only on a weekend this year — Sunday, Feb. 14 — it’s also a holiday weekend for many lucky people who are off work on Monday, Feb. 15 for Presidents’ Day.

Experience your Valentine self in Asheville this year. Romance awaits you! We at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville vacation rental, are happy to do our part by suggesting some activities perfect for nurturing a close connection between you and the apple of your eye.

Take a hike, drive or bike ride along the Blue Ridge Parkway – right next to Lovers’ Loop Retreat – and let nature amaze you and yours with its mysteries, magic and gorgeous mountain views. Using the parkway is FREE. Or take a walk at the North Carolina Arboretum, beside the parkway in Asheville, and enjoy the pretty grounds that adjoin national forest land.

Stroll around downtown Asheville, with a special stop at the French Broad Chocolate Lounge. Chocolate and love go together, right? Then hold hands in a safe, dark place at Asheville’s Fine Arts Theatre, the local art house theater downtown with great flicks year-round.

You also can visit breweries, wine bars, coffeehouses and a wonderful variety of independently-owned restaurants downtown for a Valentine’s taste of Asheville. One of our favorite coffeehouses is Filo, a Greek bakery and café not far from Lovers’ Loop Retreat.

Opera always has some romance. Experience a different blend of both on Feb. 12 with Destino, a Canadian trio of tenors who mix opera, soul, pop, gospel and who knows what other ingredients. They’ll be at the Diana Wortham Theatre in downtown Asheville.

For some love and live music, check out the 15th annual Bluegrass First Class festival Feb. 12-14 at the Crowne Plaza Resort in Asheville. This big deal features a range of nationally-known performers guaranteed to put some pep in your step and stars in your eyes.

Or be swept off your feet on Feb. 13 at The Grey Eagle club in Asheville. Multiple bands will perform a 69-love song Valentine’s show, inspired by the Magnetic Fields album.

“My Fatal Valentine,” a dinner theatre mystery, will be performed at the Renaissance Asheville Hotel on Feb. 13 (and again on Feb. 20) if you want a little mayhem with your romance.

All of these events and activities are 10 minutes or less from Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, where we salute love’s many splendors and forms.

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