Archive for February, 2011

Lovers’ Loop Retreat March Muse-letter

We love March. It’s full of surprises. March can be winter or spring at various times, but here in Asheville, NC, eventually March gives way to signs of springtime. Maybe emerging crocuses, daffodils, forsythia, flowering trees. It’s a bursting-forth month, and the Asheville area bursts forth with it. Lots of people downtown, lots of events—music, comedy, organic happenings this month. Here at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, we can’t wait for March to get started and spread the energy and vibrancy of this fun and funky place. When you visit Asheville, take advantage of the welcome mat at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, a peaceful place beside the Blue Ridge Parkway where you can enjoy our mountain views with convenient access to downtown and other attractions.

Free things to do in Asheville in March

Asheville always has free and nearly-free activities. Enjoy some free things to do in Asheville in March. Check out the Asheville Ukulele Jam the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at Laurey’s Catering downtown. All levels of experience are welcome. March 1 is the monthly free-admission day at the North Carolina Arboretum, with hundreds of acres of forest and landscaped gardens for walking and biking, plus exhibits. The Asheville Art Museum’s monthly free-admission day is March 2. The museum’s 60th-anniversary exhibit includes a painting by Zelda Fitzgerald, who died in Asheville and was married to novelist F. Scott Fitzgerald. The Curator’s Bazaar at the art museum March 12-13 will offer deals on frames, books and artwork, but there’s no charge for browsing.

Jack of the Wood, a nightclub downtown, hosts a free, unplugged Irish jam session each Sunday evening. The Synergy Story Slam at the new Magnetic Theatre is an open-mic storytelling competition. The theater, in Asheville’s River Arts District, asks for a donation of $5-$10, but no one is turned away. For another nearly-free activity, watch a movie at Asheville Pizza and Brewing, where all films are $3.

Make Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville vacation rental, your place to stay when you explore Asheville, NC recreation, arts, restaurants and festivals. Events are posted and updated through the year on www.loversloopretreat.com. Visit the site to see what’s going on whenever you plan your trip. You can link to our blog, https://loversloopretreat.wordpress.com, on the home page, and we’re also on Twitter! Our website features a link where you can contact us for a list of many FREE things to do in Asheville.

Organic in Asheville

The annual Organic Growers School conference will be March 5-6 at UNC-Asheville. Learn everything you want to know about organic growing: gardening, livestock, permaculture, cooking, herbs, food preservation, landscaping and more.

March comedy in Asheville

March is a funny month in Asheville. Billy D. Washington, a stand-up comedian and musician, performs at the Diana Wortham Theatre downtown March 11. March 11-13 is the annual Comedy Classic Weekend at the Grove Park Inn north of downtown, with nationally-known comedians. For home-grown comedy that pokes fun at all things Asheville, catch the Asheville-based, all-women’s group LYLAS (Love Ya Like A Sis) March 17-26 at the North Carolina Stage Co. downtown.

Asheville events in March

Remember the Nitty Gritty Dirt Band? They’re playing at the Orange Peel downtown March 11. Lucinda Williams will play the Orange Peel on March 16. For fans of traditional Irish music, there’s Dervish at the Diana Wortham Theatre on March 24. The Magnetic Theatre’s storytelling nights are March 7 and March 21. The annual orchid show at the North Carolina Arboretum March 26-27 is amazing. And the Taste of Home Cooking School will bring its food and fun to Asheville on March 29.

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

Reach us at loversloop(at)gmail(dot)com or (828) 545-2950.

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Asheville Storytelling Slam

Asheville Magnetic Theatre Storytelling

What a great idea. The new Magnetic Theatre performance venue in Asheville’s River Arts District hosts storytelling slams this winter and spring. It’s the city’s only open-mic, community-based storytelling gig. You can go to tell your tale or just listen. Admission to the Synergy Story Slam is a suggested donation of $5-$10, but no one is turned away for lack of funds. The money goes to the slam’s winner and to a nonprofit or charity in Asheville. Good deal!

The slams are on the first and third Monday of each month: Feb. 21, March 7, March 21, April 4, April 18 and May 2. The show starts at 7:30 p.m. Each slam centers on a theme and two judges pick the winner. When you stay at our Lovers’ Loop Retreat, an affordable Asheville vacation rental, you’ve got an easy drive to the Magnetic Theatre.

Asheville’s  Storytelling Scene

In addition to the storytelling slam, Asheville has an active storytelling scene. The Asheville Storytelling Circle stages events, and the city has hosted national storytelling festivals. Asheville also participates in the global Tellabration!, an annual storytelling celebration in November. The storytelling circle, affiliated with the North Carolina Storytelling Guild, sponsored a free storytelling series last summer at the new Pack Square Park downtown and may do so this summer, too.

Bring your stories, or your listening ears, to Asheville. Contact Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, at 828-545-2950 or loversloop(at)gmail(dot)com.

 

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Fodor’s ranks Asheville in top 21 destinations

Asheville makes so many national and international best-of lists, it’s head-spinning. The area has garnered praise as a place to retire, a place for cycling and other outdoor recreation, a groovy food and microbrewery scene, a good spot for organic and vegetarian fare, a great place to start an independent business, a top location for visual arts and other accolades.

Fodor’s travel guide destinations include Asheville

This year, the travel guidebook publisher Fodor’s lists Asheville in the top 21 destinations in the world for 2011! Asheville beat Morocco and other exotic locales to be ranked equally with the coast of Italy, Hawaii, Mozambique, Tokyo, Toronto, New York City and other destinations. Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville bed and breakfast alternative, is right here in the middle of the action.

Asheville, NC, attractions

We’ve hosted many guests over the years who are wowed by Asheville. Our guests come for music concerts, for visual arts, for the lively and diverse dance scene, for hiking and biking, for motorcycling, for the Biltmore estate and the Blue Ridge Parkway, for the Bele Chere street festival, for free bluegrass jams, for creative beers and a tantalizing diversity of restaurants, for workshops —the list of attractions in and around Asheville is long and delicious.

Asheville, NC, microbreweries

A Fodor spokeswoman told the local newspaper that Asheville and the other 20 destinations listed for 2011 always are great places to visit. We knew that. She said one reason Asheville came to Fodor’s attention is its recent designation as Beer City USA, a tribute to the hopping—yeah, we said it—microbrewery scene here. The city has about a dozen microbreweries.

Asheville, NC, vacation

Asheville has received other travel-related acclaim. The New York Times travel section featured Asheville in October 2010. And travel guidebook publisher Frommer’s listed Asheville in its top 12 destinations in 2007.

At Lovers’ Loop Retreat, we’re happy to host guests for whatever reasons they come to Asheville. Contact Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville vacation rental, at 828-545-2950 or loversloop(at)gmail(dot)com.

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Lovers’ Loop Retreat February muse-letter

Mid-winter greetings! The beautiful mountain views in the Asheville, NC, area are stunning in winter, and we appreciate the crispness of the vistas in February. We’ve had fun this winter hiking on the Mountains-to-Sea Trail along the Blue Ridge Parkway. We pick up the trail at the end of our road here at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, an affordable Asheville bed and breakfast alternative. It’s peaceful to walk through the scented pine forest, look up and see the evergreens against the blue sky. With Valentine’s Day and the President’s Day holiday weekend this month, February is a great time to celebrate in Asheville.

Free things to do in Asheville in February

Enjoy some free things to do in Asheville this month. Take your own tour of downtown’s chocolate shops, which include the French Broad Chocolate Lounge, the Chocolate Fetish and Kilwin’s, which offers chocolates and ice cream—how irresistible is that? Take a stroll around the Grove Park Inn, where even visitors who aren’t guests can sit by the huge fireplaces in the lobby and absorb the heat and history of the famous place with fabulous views. The inn’s latest boast is that it hosted President Obama and the First Lady on vacation last year. Window shop at some independently-owned stores at downtown’s Grove Arcade, a beautiful example of Asheville’s classy architectural mix. Browse the shelves at Malaprop’s bookstore, a signature business downtown and one of several independent booksellers in the city.

Make Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our affordable Asheville vacation rental, your place to stay when you explore Asheville, NC recreation, arts, restaurants and festivals. Events are posted and updated through the year on www.loversloopretreat.com. Visit the site to see what’s going on whenever you plan your trip. You can link to our blog, https://loversloopretreat.wordpress.com, on the home page, and we’re also on Twitter! Our website features a link where you can contact us for a list of many FREE things to do in Asheville.

Jake Shimabukuro ukulele in Asheville

The ukulele is back! Forget Tiny Tim. Check out Jake Shimabukuro at UNC-Asheville on Feb. 10. He was featured recently on National Public Radio, and he makes those four strings sing. Catch the fever at the Asheville Ukulele Society’s free biweekly jams, the second and fourth Tuesday of each month at Laurey’s Catering and Gourmet downtown. It’s music that makes you smile.

February theater in Asheville

Theater never sleeps in Asheville, and February is filled with a range of stage pickings offered by professional and community troupes. The Montford Park Players present “The “Patient” and “The Real Inspector Hound” Feb. 10-12 and Feb. 17-20 at the beautifully restored Masonic Temple downtown. Probably worth the admission just to be in the historic Masonic building. “Boeing! Boeing!” will open downtown Feb. 16 (through March 13), a production of the North Carolina Stage Company. Asheville Community Theatre presents the Broadway hit “Rent” Feb. 18-27.

Asheville events in February

Get your laugh on with comedian Etta May at Diana Wortham Theatre downtown Feb. 11. The Asheville Civic Center downtown will present “Lord of the Dance” Feb. 16. The annual extravaganza Bluegrass First Class will be Feb. 18-20. And if you’re drawn to the arts and crafts style of architecture and antiques/collectibles, Asheville is the place to be Feb. 18-20 for the annual Arts & Crafts Antiques Show and Conference at the Grove Park Inn.

A storytelling open mic, the Synergy Story Slam, will be Feb. 21 at the new Magnetic Theater just outside downtown. Celtic vocalist Cathie Ryan will perform Feb. 25 at the Diana Wortham Theatre. And the innovative and bold Asheville Contemporary Dance Theatre will stage its annual 48-Hour Dance Project Feb. 25-27, with dance presentations created in a 48-hour period.

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

Reach us at loversloop(at)gmail(dot)com or (828) 545-2950.

Cheers!

Lovers’ Loop Retreat

 

 

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