From the Editor: October 2023

Gina Malone, editor

As I begin writing this, I’m seated on a bench in a pollinator garden by Lake Junaluska in September. Deadlines require that we at The Laurel work ahead, always ahead. While the bees, butterflies, skippers, dragonflies and hummingbirds flit and drone all about me, landing on hibiscus, jewelweed, roses and butterfly bush, I’m working in this moment, but thinking of October. My imagination paints the leaves all around me and the trees on the surrounding mountainsides rich autumn colors, lowers the temperature and dries the air a bit, deepens the blue of the sky where a moment ago a Bald Eagle soared high above my open-air “office.” I’m creating fall in my mind even as I enjoy these last days of summer. What a gift imagination is! And, really, what are the arts but a generous sharing of the imaginations we all possess?

As always in October, we have gathered some makers and their beautiful creations to share with you in our WNC Crafts section, and you’ll find other celebrations of fine craft throughout the magazine.

Delightful autumn weather lends vibrancy to art tours and festivals this month, including the Beaverdam Studio Tour, the Kenilworth Studio Tour, the Church Street Art and Craft Show, Colorfest and the Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands.

Festive anniversaries include Twigs & Leaves Gallery’s 25th, the Asheville Gallery of Art’s 35th, and Black Mountain College Museum + Arts Center’s 30th.

As you relax into glorious fall days, don’t miss Judith Canty Graves’ homage to autumn gardens, NC Arboretum’s program on monarch butterflies or the Lovely Asheville Annual Fall Festival.

I’ll end with the optimism of A. A. Milne: “Good work shall be done this winter. Life shall be lived well. The end of the summer is not the end of the world. Here’s to October….”


Gina Malone can be reached at

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