The Whole Store

We hear self care, natural, and wellness quite a bit so we all know that we need to make healthier choices. The questions is, where do we start? The Whole Store is an amazing local resource that offers natural foods, supplements, herbs, and more. Pat and the staff at The Whole Store are knowledgeable and able to answer many questions as you begin to make the small changes on your path to wellness.

Open 7 days a week at 10:00am!
3090 West US Hwy 64 #105 Murphy NC 28906

In addition to supplements, teas, frozen and pantry food items, you can also find pet supplements and beauty care products. Most impressive is the wall of bulk herbs and resources to help you make wise decisions regarding your health. Be sure to watch The Whole Store’s “Backyard Remedies” show on our local Cable TV channel 49 and tune in to WKRK the 1st Thursday of the month at 10:30am!

Rafting Adventures

Some come to the mountains to unwind and relax…others come for the adventure and thrill of our rivers. If you want to step away from the screen time and get that adrenaline rush, white water rafting is for you. If you’re not a thrill seeker, we have plenty of opportunities for you to take in the mountains, lakes, and rivers at your own pace.

Cherokee County is home to 160,000 acres of National Forest, Hiwassee Lake, Apalachia Lake, Nottely River, Hiwassee River, Valley River, and countless streams. We’re also centrally located between the Nantahala and Ocoee Rivers in the Great Smoky Mountains. The Ocoee was home to the 1996 Atlanta Olympics while the Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) has been recently recognized by The New York Times as the “Nation’s Premiere Paddling School,” “The Best Place to Learn” by Outside, and as “One of the Best Outfitters on Earth” by National Geographic Adventure. To say that we offer the best experiences would be an understatement.

We recommend that you explore the packages offered and make reservations. You can add paddling instruction, zip line tours, guided fishing and fly fishing, tubing, mountain biking, horseback riding, gemstone mining, stand up paddleboarding, and even a train ride on the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad.

Summer Art Around Town

School may be out…but The MAC Summer Art Program is in! Throughout July, art classes are offered to kids in downtown Murphy. An exhibition featuring these young artists and their work will be Friday August 2, 5:00-8:00 pm during the Murphy Art Walk.

Student Art Exhibit Saturday August 2nd, 5:00-8:00pm in Murphy

The kids aren’t the only ones to enjoy art, the Valley River Arts Guild hosts a variety of classes for adults at The MAC throughout the year. From guitar lessons to watercolor, the opportunities to express yourself creatively are endless. Just across the street at Trudy’s Creations, you can also enjoy acrylic pouring classes or purchase one of many handcrafted designs. If you’re looking for a unique conversation piece for your home or that one-of-a-kind gift, be sure to explore our locally owned shops at the August 2nd Art Walk.

Black & White Market is a picker’s dream come true with vintage and locally crafted pieces that are unique to Murphy. Just a few doors down you’ll find impressive wooden creations, local photography, jewelry, and pottery at Gallery 26. Around the corner, Marketplace Antiques and Lotsa Memories Antiques & More have an eclectic mix of collectibles and vintage finds.

You’ll find local art for sale on the walls of Bistro 29, Daily Grind and Wine, and The BakeShop… not to mention all the artists set up at Rumors Clothing, Curiosity Shop, Simply Sweet Baby Boutique, and Serenity Mountain Gift Shop. So put a reminder in your calendar for First Friday Art Walk and enjoy this amazing community’s creativity on display for the Murphy Art Walk. We’ll see you August 2nd from 5:00-8:00 pm!

Gaines Concealed Carry

Dr. George Gaines is the Owner of Gaines Concealed Carry and our July 2019 Member of the Month. Dr. Gaines is the lead instructor with a long list of credentials, licenses, and certifications from the Red Cross and the Academy for Advanced Homeland Security Training to the NRA and US Concealed Carry Association. Most important of all, he’s a member of our Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce.

George has been living here in North Carolina for just over a year, enjoying the beautiful mountain scenery. You’ll see him out and about at our Chamber AfterHours, meeting new folks. While he may be new to our community, he has been providing firearms training to students of all levels for over 6 years after his cousin Henry got him back into competitive shooting. He loves to teach others about gun safety, stressing that a gun is a tool that everyone must learn to use safely.

If you currently have your concealed carry permit and interested in becoming a USCCA Training Counselor, Dr. George offers this and additional training opportunities. If you get a chance, sit down and enjoy a slice of pizza and red wine as you chat about all that he offers at Gaines Concealed Carry and his past experiences in education. Better yet, join us at our AfterHours and get to know many of our members!

Business Cards & Bojangles’

Each month Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce hosts an AfterHours networking event. Bojangles’ will be our host on July 18th in Murphy from 5:00 – 7:00pm. We invite our members, local businesses, and entrepreneurs to join us! We offer door prizes and select our Member of the Month and Ambassador of the Month from those in attendance. Be sure to bring your business cards and stay a while!

Congratulations to our Door Prize Winners!
Brad Bruce of Olde Town Brokers: Valley River RV Resort two-night stay
John Reynolds of Valley River Humane Society: Mike Lalone Pottery

Thursday, June 13th Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce AfterHours at Valley River RV Resort in Murphy. Many thanks to our hosts: Jean-Marie Harrison – Resort General Manager, Billy Harrison – Operations Manager, Loren Snyder and Ron & Judy Schweitzer.

Joining us were Murphy Mayor Rick Ramsey, Murphy Town Council Gail Walker Stansell, WKRKMcNabb PropertiesThe Whole StoreCherokee ScoutValley River Humane SocietyREACHCherokee County Arts CouncilOlde Town Brokers, Bear Creek Adventures Mini Golf and Gem Mining Co., Gaines Concealed CarryCherokee County Master Gardeners, and Chamber Ambassadors: Sherry Palmer, Cory Bailey, and Elo-ly Bailey.

Congrats to our Member of the Month: Dr. George Gaines of Gaines Concealed Carry and Ambassador of the Month: Elo-ly Harris of Cherokee County Arts Council & Cherokee County Master Gardeners!

Join us for your chance to be our Member or Ambassador of the Month!

Movers and Shakers

Economic development is alive and well in Cherokee County thanks to folks like….

Paul Worley; Director of Economic And Workforce Development at Tri-County Community College Center for Applied Technology

Aaron Patton; Director of Customized Training at Tri-County Community College Center of Applied Technology.

Kathryn Jenkins; Director of Small Business Center at Tri-County Community College.

Paul and Aaron concentrate much of their efforts on assisting in the expansion of established businesses and fostering new business growth in the region. Kathryn is the go-to person for business planning, marketing strategies, training, small business loan preparation and sound advice. The SBC offers a wide array of classes to the public that are free of charge and aimed to provide a foundation for entrepreneurs both large and small. 

After meeting with Paul, Aaron, and Kathryn areas for needed growth were outlined as housing, expanded broadband, and continued workforce development. Opportunities are plentiful in an area that has as 20% base in manufacturing, a major medical center, tourism, and a variety of healthy income opportunities from major employers such as: Harrah’s Cherokee Valley River Casino & Hotel, Murphy Electric Power Board, Erlanger Western Carolina Hospital, The Cable Company, Snap-on, IOI and MOOG, Inc.


Dinner for Three

Our first segment of “Party of Three” is dedicated to Murphy’s Chophouse and the nationally renowned chef/owner, Chef James Reaux. As recent winner of our Forks and Corks – Local Savor event for “Best Food” by popular vote this promised a culinary experience for our crew. I mean, if so many folks voted for them what better place to start? 

Arriving on time for our reservation we were pleasantly greeted at the door and shown to our table immediately. Our server, Karen, arrived promptly sharing the specials and offering advice on menu items. Of course we ordered right away as we were starving; calamari and salads all around. Now we were down to serious business…the entrees. I jumped in and ordered the Surf and Turf. How could I not with Karen promising perfection? I went for the Filet Mignon and lobster.  Ronda followed suit with her selection of a mid-rare Ribeye finished with a Port wine reduction paired with succulent scallops. Becca did not hesitate to double down with a Filet Mignon topped with baby Bella mushrooms and a sweet potato. What can I say, we girls like our steak. This was paired with an excellent 2017 Gascon Malbec which complimented the beef superbly. 

The timing of the food was perfect. Courses arrived to the table just when we were finishing the previous dish. Deliciousness all around. I would like to say we enjoyed stimulating and thought provoking conversation, but we couldn’t stop eating long enough for that to happen. In the end, “to- go” boxes were delivered because no one was willing to leave even a bite behind. We’ll be sure to save room for dessert next time! See you next month at Red Brick Deli.