Saturday, May 24, 2014

Hurricane Preparedness Week: May 25-31, 2014

History teaches that a lack of hurricane awareness and preparation are common threads among all major hurricane disasters. By knowing your vulnerability and what actions you should take, you can reduce the effects of a hurricane disaster.” (from the National Hurricane Center website)

With history in mind, do you recall the 2004 Hurricane Season? This was one of the more active seasons for North Carolina, and especially the western portion of the state. This is the ten year anniversary of the major flooding event across the Blue Ridge Chapter resulting from three consecutive Tropical systems impacting our area:

Hurricane Francis: September 7-8
Hurricane Ivan: September 17-18
Hurricane Jeanne: September 28-29

Can it happen again? Certainly! Anywhere! So please take the opportunity this week to reflect on your readiness efforts during Hurricane Preparedness Week. Here are a few initiatives to consider:

Review the potential hazards associated with Hurricanes:

Visit the American Red Cross for a comprehensive overview of preparing for, responding to and recovering from Hurricanes:

Many folks think that we are immune from the effects of these coastal storms. However, events like the 2004 flooding continue to illustrate the need for all of us to be prepared for Hurricanes, from the coast to the mountains. Make sure you know how to receive critical weather information regardless of your location. When severe weather threatens, how do you get your real-time weather alerts?

NOAA Weather Alert Radio:
American Red Cross Mobile Apps for your smartphone:

In addition to reviewing this information for your own purpose, perhaps you would consider forwarding this message to a family member, friend or colleague who might also benefit by learning more about Hurricane Preparedness this week.

Steve Marks
Disaster Program Manager
American Red Cross - Blue Ridge Chapter
331 Queen Street, Suite B
Boone, North Carolina 28607
Cell: 828-964-3915
Office: 828-264-8226

Wednesday, March 6, 2013


Awoke this morning to a couple inches of snow already on the ground with another 2-4" underway. Winds are whipping the snow to and fro, with gusts anywhere from 30-50 mph across the High Country.

Here are a couple of pictures... one of the house and one of our four legged friends weathering the snow and wind. The wind chill is around 5 degrees above zero at present!

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Winter's View

The 2013 Winter has been an active one for the High Country! Here are some pictures...

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

A Blustery Day!

Some pictures from the snow and cold on January 3, 2012:

From the front porch...

Water Wheel on Highway 105 in Boone...

Little man, big icicles...

Our first real snow!

Well it has finally come... our first real snow event since moving to Boone.

You can follow the data at'sWeather.htm

or at

I will post some pictures later this afternoon. Enjoy!!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Montreat Lesson

I hope you will not tire of my thoughts from our youth trip to Montreat. It was such a wonderful experience and there is much to share from our journey. This week I would like to address the theme of God’s love – an important lesson for young and old alike. As a youth at heart trapped in the body of a 40 something year old, I have a unique perspective. For the youth, God’s love is often overlooked as one of His most special gifts.

Life as a teenager has its ups and downs. It’s a time of great transition from childhood to adulthood. Yet there is much turmoil during this period of change, for both the youth and those who care for them. Youth are often insecure and uncertain about their future. They can be emotionally unstable at times. Every now and then they may make poor choices as they test the waters of responsibility and authority. We have all been teenagers but our memories of these trying times have faded over the years.

Perhaps now more than ever, our youth need affirmation. During our time at Montreat, the adult leaders stressed to the youth that God will always love them. Through the good times and the bad times, through the right decisions and the wrong choices, God’s love for them is a special gift. It is not something that must be earned or purchased. It is something that must simply be accepted. In return, we should all learn to share His gift.

As their congregational guardians, we can demonstrate God’s love for our youth. We can take a moment to reaffirm God’s love to the youth (as well as to one and another) through our positive comments, through a hug or pat on the back, or simply through a smile of encouragement. I am confident that the outcome will be quite favorable for the youth and for you too! It’s a lesson we can all take to heart.

“O give thanks to the God of heaven, for his steadfast love endures forever.” (Psalm 136.26)

Thursday, June 30, 2011

A New Opportunity

Back in January I wrote about the start of something new. This evening I am writing about a new opportunity that I would have never envisioned back in January. It is truly amazing how God can work in one's life. With all the changes we have experienced in our move to the High Country of North Carolina, we have been so very blessed!

Next week I begin my work as the Interim Director of Youth Ministry with First Presbyterian Church in Boone. I am excited about this call to serve the youth within our faith community. In the coming weeks I will blog about this new journey. To learn more about First Presbyterian Church in Boone, please visit their website at