Oconaluftee Visitors Center

While visiting bookstores and other retail establishments that sell books in the mountains of North Carolina a couple of weeks ago, I made a point to stop by the Great Smoky Mountains National Park’s Oconaluftee Visitors Center near Cherokee, North Carolina.

I hoped to find my vintage postcard book, The Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, on the shelf there, but it was not there. I was pleased, though, to get to meet Ila Hatter, a volunteer with Great Smoky Mountains Association, the 501(c)3 organization that operates the bookstore/gift shop at the Oconaluftee Visitors Center. I recognized Ms. Hatter from seeing her on UNC-TV (North Carolina public television.) She is a medicinal plant expert. It was a pleasure to meet her.

I told Ms. Hatter about my book and she told me how to e-mail the buyer for the Great Smoky Mountains Association. I did that when I returned home, and I hope to see my book on the shelves in all the GSMA gift shops on my next trip to the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

My sister and I joined the Great Smoky Mountains Association and hope to get to take advantage of some of the programs the association offers throughout the year. Even if we don’t, though, we like knowing our membership dues help preserve the national park and provide educational opportunities for others.

You can learn more about Great Smoky Mountains Association by visiting the organization’s website at http://www.smokiesinformation.org.

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