Business Buzz: 4/27/22

April 27, 2022


Mars Hill University will build a new campus center that will bring together many student-focused amenities and departments under one roof. University leaders announced a $20 million capital fundraising campaign for the project during a kickoff event on Friday, April 22. As is common with many large fundraising efforts, campaign leaders have been securing commitments during a “quiet phase” for a little more than a year and revealed they have raised more than $15 million toward the goal. The new campus center will be built where Blackwell Hall currently stands, along North Carolina Highway 213 (Cascade Street) and opening onto the Lunsford Commons upper quadrangle of the heart of the campus. Plans call for gutting Blackwell Hall with a renovation that will double the size of that current facility. Learn more here.


Asheville Outlets is hosting Drive Electric Earth Day this Saturday, April 30 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. (rain date is May 14). Spectators will view a wide range of electric cars, as well as the latest in personal electric transportation vehicles.Electric vehicle owners and dealers will be available to answer any questions about costs, range, charging and more. Plus, meet members of the Blue Ridge EV Club and Tesla Owners of Western North Carolina groups. Local solar installers will also be on hand to discuss powering EVs.Spectators are encouraged to bring nonperishable canned or boxed provisions for Loving Food Resources, a local food pantry. Items of need include boxed elbow macaroni & spaghetti, saltine crackers, brownie and baked goods mixes, foil packed tuna, bagged sugar, and more. Learn more here.

Artists from the Refinery AVL are celebrating spring with a group exhibit. The Main Gallery in the Refinery promises to offer a little something for everyone from fine art to fine furniture restoration. The opening will take place on Friday, May 6 from 5 – 8 pm and the public is invited! The show will remain open through the month of May. Featured artists include:  Jenna Jaffe of Conscious Creating; painter, Cheryl Eugenia Barnes; Artists from Aurora Studio & Gallery; Deb and Mitch Palminteri of Friend of Furniture; The Asheville Makers; abstract expressionist, Jon Federlin; stain glass artist, Roux Toner and assemblage artist, Susan Rosendale Martin. The Refinery AVL, is located at 207 Coxe Avenue. Learn more here.


Asheville Outlets has announced the May opening of Merrell, a global leader in outdoor active footwear. For over 40 years, Merrell has been on the forefront of innovative footwear with icons such as the Moab hiking boot and Jungle Moc. Today, Merrell is focused on merging performance, styling, and comfort to empower all people to confidently explore the outdoors. “Asheville Outlets is delighted to welcome Merrell, a wonderful resource for all our shoppers who enjoy an active, outdoor lifestyle,” says Miranda Bowman, General Manager of Asheville Outlets. Read more here.


The Asheville-Buncombe Air Quality Agency (AB Air Quality) is now accepting nominations for our eighteenth annual air quality awards program. The goal of the Clean Air Excellence Awards is to recognize businesses and organizations that have truly gone above and beyond regulatory requirements to improve air quality for the citizens of our area. Past years award recipients have included Biltmore, Eaton Corporation, and Asheville Housing Authority; each initiated voluntary efforts that improved air quality in the Asheville-Buncombe County Area. Award guidelines explain the criteria for the awards and different categories of awards apply to different types of permitted facilities, organizations, and individuals that would like to nominate themselves or another entity for consideration.  Learn more here.


SanStone Health & Rehabilitation recognized numerous outstanding employee contributions with their inaugural Awards Gala. This special evening honored the accomplishments of one department and 17 employees from across the state that received The President’s Award at a red carpet event held in Downtown Asheville. Read more here.