Plus, Project Aspire's postponed vote.
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76º | Partly cloudy | 20% chance of precipitation | Sunrise 7:12 a.m. | Sunset 7:37 p.m.

🍻 Brews, bites + a bit of competition
salt face mule brewing bar
Take a sip of a house beer. | Photo by AVLtoday
Salt Face Mule Brewing Co. officially opened its doors to the public on Wednesday, Sept. 13. Its launch has been years in the making, and the Weaverville brewpub is offering more than just its house beers on tap — it’s also a gathering spot for games and Southern grub.

So take a load off at the bar with us, and we’ll tell you what’s in store.

salt face mule brewing dining room

There’s plenty of space inside and out for enjoying a dish or a drink.


Photo by AVLtoday

Take a seat + a sip

The dining room is casual and spacious, a comfortably industrial space where the silver tanks that brew the beer in your glass are a prominent fixture in one corner (equally so, the large mule painted on the far wall). If dining room seating isn’t your thing, stools at the bar and outdoor tables are plentiful.

Make sure you grab a menu on your way in. Our bartender, Will, described the culinary offerings as “comfort food with a twist.” Think catfish dusted with cornmeal and served with tomato jam, local tomatoes paired with burrata and cornbread, and pulled pork cooked with peaches (thanks to Will’s recommendation, we can personally vouch for this last one). Pro tip: If you like crispiness + spice, don’t skip the fries.

And don’t forget to pair your dish with a good brew — Salt Face Mule currently has five house-brewed beers on tap (which take their names from Southern sayings) and is planning to add more soon.

mini golf course at salt face brewing co.

Step outside, and let things get competitive.


Photo by AVLtoday

Work on your swing

Once you’re fully fed and watered, make your way to the little room around the corner from the main entrance — there you’ll find all the equipment needed to get your game on. 18 holes of mini golf is $15 for adults and $10 for kids 12 and under; 36 holes is $20 for adults and $15 for kids. Whether you’re only looking for some fresh air and fun or you’re ready to crush the mini golf competition (we get it), the team will get you set up to take your swing.

The spot will also have an RC track opening up in the next few months. Game on.
Friday, Sept. 15
  • Teen Gaming Night | Friday, Sept. 15 | 6:30-8 p.m. | Tempie Avery Montford Community Center, 34 Pearson Dr., Asheville | Free | Bring your teen to a night of fun and friendly competition, featuring games like Madden and 2K.
  • Pippin | Friday, Sept. 15-Sunday, Oct. 8 | Times vary | Asheville Community Theatre, 35 E. Walnut St., Asheville | $18-$36.50 | Step into a magical and mysterious world of self-discovery during this Broadway classic.
Saturday, Sept. 16
  • WellCare Health Fair | Saturday, Sept. 16 | 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m. | WellCare Welcome Room, 150 Tunnel Rd., Asheville | Free | Make your wellness a priority with health screenings by Mission Health Partners, fire safety education from the Asheville Fire Department + kids’ activities.
  • Hella Good Dance Party | Saturday, Sept. 16 | 10 p.m.-1 a.m. | Little Jumbo Bar, 241 Broadway St., Asheville | Hearken back to 2001 when you discovered No Doubt’s motorcycle, black clothes, heavy riff vibe — then get dancing.
  • Highland’s Clawtoberfest | Saturday, Sept. 16 | 12-10 p.m. | Highland Brewing, 12 Old Charlotte Hwy., Asheville | Free | Celebrate fall with an Oktoberfest-style party filled with music, food, games, and German-inspired small-batch beers.*
Sunday, Sept. 17
  • Fall Flow | Sunday, Sept. 17 | 10:30-11:30 a.m. | One World Brewing - West Asheville, 520 Haywood Rd., Asheville | $15 | Bring your mat and build strength with long stretches at this outdoor class designed to cool the body and let you savor the season.
  • Show & Tell Sunday Market | Sunday, Sept. 17 | 12-5 p.m. | Rabbit Rabbit, 75 Coxe Ave., Asheville | Free | Shop vintage clothes, housewares, handmade jewelry, ceramics, apparel, and more from local vendors.
Monday, Sept. 18
  • Negroni Week | Monday, Sept. 18-Sunday, Sept. 24 | 4 p.m. | Burial Beer Co. - Forestry Camp Taproom, 10 Shady Oak Dr., Asheville | Free | Burial is joining bars around the globe as they celebrate the classic cocktail with Negroni-inspired special offerings.
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This travel-worthy festival is all about books, ideas + conversations
Charleston Literary Festival, Inc
Now in its seventh year, the festival is an independent, non-profit 501(c)3 that runs over 10 days. | Photo provided by Charleston Literary Festival, Inc
Calling all literature lovers: The Charleston Literary Festival, an annual boutique literary event, is happening Nov. 3-12 in downtown Charleston, SC.

Charleston Literary Festival has a strong track record of hosting internationally-acclaimed writers, and this year is no different. (Keep reading...) This year’s festival is anticipated to be the biggest and most ambitious yet with 30+ sessions covering AI in literature, memoir and healing, the art of mastery, grief, historical fiction, and more.

The Festival has two locations:
  • Nov. 3-5 at Circular Congregational Church
  • Nov. 7-12 at the historic Dock Street Theatre
This year’s festival kicks off with an opening night party on Nov. 4 and features standout events like:
  • Generation-defining, world-class author Margaret Atwood (read: “The Handmaid’s Tale”) during a virtual event
  • Award-winning poet Safiya Sinclair on her journey to find her voice as a woman and a poet in her memoir “How To Say Babylon”
  • Pulitzer-Prize-winning author Paul Harding on “This Other Eden” — his novel that has been nominated for this year’s Booker Prize
  • And more
News Notes
  • The vote for Project Aspire has been moved to the Asheville City Council meeting on Tuesday, Sept. 26 and will allow for public comment. The proposal, by YMCA and First Baptist Church of Asheville, is a 10-acre mixed-use development in downtown. Disagreement on building height, parking, and affordability led to the vote’s being moved. (Asheville Citizen-Times)
  • Neng Jr.'s was named one of the best new restaurants of 2023 by Bon Appétit. Writer Elazar Sontag lauded Chef Silver Iocovozzi’s blend of North Carolinian and Filipinx flavors and highlighted adobo oysters, pork belly pulled noodles, and keso ice cream as some of the must-order dishes.
  • Downtown natural wine shop Crocodile Wine made an appearance in the Wine Enthusiast article, “The Best Wine Shops of 2023 Are Community Hubs.” The comment from Eric Bloom, CEO of natural wine distributor Benny and Zoid Selections, cited the shop’s selection, expertise, and atmosphere as reasons for inclusion.
  • 14. That’s how many years Chai Pani has been slinging Indian street food in Asheville — and to mark the occasion, the restaurant will be serving up some iconic dishes at its all-day celebration on Tuesday, Sept. 26. Join in for Bombay Chili Cheese Fries, Lamb Vindaloo, beer + cocktail specials, and more.
  • Local nonprofit Babies Need Bottoms is collecting donations during National Diaper Need Awareness Week, Sept. 18-24, with the goal of distributing 50,000 diapers to local families this month. Public assistance programs often don’t cover diaper purchases, so the organization works to addresses the community need. See how to get involved.
Plan Ahead
  • Get your tickets for ArtsAVL’s State of the Arts Brunch on Monday, Oct. 30 from 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m. at The Orange Peel. The event will highlight what’s going on with Asheville’s arts industry and celebrate the creative community with remarks from local government leaders, an awards presentation, and (of course) family-style brunch.
  • Racing and swimming pigs, Mountain Music Festival, and a new swirling + spinning ride? Count us in. The 2023 NC Mountain State Fair is here through this Sunday, Sept. 17, and features fun rides, heritage artisans, livestock shows, entertainment, competitions, and delicious food. Read: There’s fun for the whole family. Get tickets.*
  • It’s good to be a Bulldog. UNC Asheville Athletics had a record-breaking fundraising year in 2022-2023, raising over $5.1 million. In addition to giving efforts seeing double numbers, the university also received a $1.5 million grant to help renovate the recently-completed Karl Straus Track. See how else they plan to spend the money.*
Fun Fact
  • Whiskey returned 314% over the last 10 years. Invest in fine whiskeys and wines with Vinovest to diversify your portfolio and watch it age like fine wine.*
  • It’s been a record-hot summer — and we still haven’t drank water since 1997. But this water brand makes us want to actually stay hydrated. It’s infused with fruit essences and has zero calories, diet sweeteners, and sugar, and still manages to taste great. New customers score 36 bottles for $36 + free shipping.*
Featured Home
  • This beautiful, newly-built 3 BD, 3 BA cabin is located within the sought-after Catawba Falls Preserve just 18 minutes from Old Fort, 20 minutes from Black Mountain, and 35 minutes from AVL. Looking for a primary home, second home, or short-term vacation rental? This could be the one for you.*
🎤 A spotlight on women in music
microphone in green spotlight
Expect captivating concerts from area musicians. | Photo by Brett Sayles via Pexels
The 2nd Annual Women to the Front Festival (aka WTF Festival) will be taking the stage at New Belgium Brewing on Sunday, Sept. 17 from 12 to 8 p.m. for an afternoon highlighting the women of Asheville (plus an after party at Getaway River Bar).

Get ready for live music, food trucks, and vendors at an event celebrating female-identifying people in the music industry, women-owned nonprofits + businesses, and organizations that support women.

If you can’t wait until Sunday to start the party, we hear you — the festival is also hosting events and concerts each day leading up to the big show. Stop by Salvage Station on Saturday, Sept. 16 from 4 to 7 p.m. for a roundtable discussion on being female in the music industry and an acoustic song share (followed by dinner and music). Head to the Night Market at The Mule on Saturday, 6-9 p.m. and don’t miss the dance party at Asheville Music Hall at 9:30 p.m. Get your groove on all weekend long.
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The Wrap
Molly Wilson.jpeg Today’s edition by:
From the editor
Admittedly, I’m an aesthetic consumer — if something has a pretty label or an unusual name, I’m roped in. Same goes for drink choices, so I was delighted by Salt Face Mule’s colloquially Southern beers (I went with the “Sit a Spell”). I was even more delighted to find that you can submit your own saying, real or made up, to help the team name their beers.
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