Who We Are

Welcome to About Asheville, your go-to resource for all things Asheville, North Carolina. We’re a team of local writers and avid travelers who are passionate about sharing our favorite spots and experiences in this vibrant city.

Asheville is a truly unique destination that offers a little something for everyone. Whether you’re an outdoor adventurer, a foodie, a craft beer enthusiast, a shopaholic, or a history buff you’ll find plenty to love in The Land of the Sky. And as locals, we’re always on the lookout for the best spots to visit, from the hidden gems to the must-see attractions.

Our goal is to provide you with insider knowledge and honest reviews of the businesses and attractions in Asheville. As locals who love Asheville just as much as you do, we’re constantly working to ensure that our recommendations are up-to-date and accurate.

We’re passionate about supporting the local Asheville community, which is why we focus on highlighting locally-owned businesses and promoting sustainable tourism. By visiting the places we recommend, you’ll be supporting the local economy and helping to preserve the unique character of this special city.

Whether you’re an Asheville resident or just planning a weekend getaway to our city, we hope that About Asheville will be your first stop for local information. Thanks for visiting, and we hope you enjoy exploring Asheville with us!

Meet the Team

Val Wheatleys: Bio Photo

Val Wheatley

Originally from Portland, Oregon, Val moved to Asheville in 2021 to be closer to family. She had only visited Asheville once before deciding to make the big move but that one trip made a lasting impression. Val loves the diverse food scene, the beautiful sunny weather, and the amazing art scene of Asheville. If she gets a kid-free afternoon, you’ll probably find her sipping a glass of wine while wandering around her favorite spot in all of Asheville – Marquee!

Val loves spending weekdays doing fun activities with her kids like taking them to the WNC Nature Center on sunny days and the Hands On Children Museum on rainy days. On weekends she tries to check out a new brewery (this city has so many to choose from) or shopping at one of the many craft festivals around town.

Val started About Asheville as a way to get out and try new places as often as possible. She loves finding hidden gems and featuring them on the site so that others can enjoy them as well. Whether it’s a new hike, a new brewery, or a special event, you know that she is going to check it out and then tell you about it!

Laura Bernhein - Bio Photo

Laura Bernhein

Laura is a journalist born in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She moved to the United States 20 years ago and has lived in Asheville on and off for 11 years with her two kids, Layla and Micael, and their dog Dulce de Leche. She and her kids spent a few years traveling and world-schooling and are now permanently living in their house in Five Points.

What she loves the most about Asheville is the people and how open-minded and welcoming everyone is (she thinks Asheville is a Hogwarts in disguise!). She works with the local non-profit Literacy Together to transform lives through the power of literacy. In addition, she works as a volunteer with Haywood Street Congregation’s Welcome Table, Seek Healing, and as the admin of a dynamic Facebook group of local mothers. She recently got her life coach certification and is studying to become a Family Constellations therapist. Laura loves drinking mate, traveling, spending time with her kids, talking to strangers, and learning new things.

Her daily motto is “Love everything you do, and everything you want will come.”

Laura Leavitt - Bio Photo

Laura Leavitt

Laura has been visiting Asheville on and off for more than a decade, knowing that it was the right place for her and her family but waiting for the combination of life season, work, and housing to make it possible. She knows this city by its charms for tourists and also by the experience of now being a local.

Laura is passionate about helping to spread the prosperity associated with Asheville’s successful tourism economy to make sure that local families feel supported. She volunteers with Babies Need Bottoms, a local diaper bank that provides free diapering supplies to local partner agencies, helping to reduce the high cost burden of diapers on families in need.

She also loves the zany edges of Asheville, and she’s always on the lookout for ways that local creatives express themselves through music, art, and more.

On any given day, you might find her eating the incredible Hearty Salad at All Day Darling, taking a walk by the river in Carrier Park, or getting some writing done at one of the many great library branches in town. She’ll talk your ear off about why this town is a great place both to visit and to live! 

Ashley Reid - Author Bio Photo

Ashley Reid

Ashley Reid is a freelance writer who feels blessed to have called Asheville home for the last five years. Born in the suburbs of Detroit, she spent her 20s living coastal in South Carolina before the Blue Ridge Mountains called her home. Ashley is a homeschooling mother to her two daughters, married to her high school sweetheart, and always looking to the horizon for her next adventure.

Ashley moved to Western North Carolina after years of visiting on vacations and realized this place was way too beautiful to leave behind. The Pisgah National Forest, abundance of waterfalls, Blue Ridge Parkway, and plethora of tasty eats in the area won her over to the Tarheel State. She is happiest when she is riverside and is vehement about keeping herself and her children outdoors as much as possible.

Ashley is a woman never short of a hobby or new interest. She writes for various publications and companies. She is a voracious reader, aspiring author, sewist, gardener, and amateur homesteader. She loves working with her hands and being with her kids. She has never considered being called weird an insult and has no problem telling strangers about her love of opossums or a new podcast episode. Ashley is always on the hunt for the best burger and coffee in town. She is passionate about wellness, kindness, and keeping childhood wild.

Samantha Carter - Author Bio Photo

Samantha Carter

Though born and raised in Santa Cruz, California, Samantha has come to call Asheville home. First introduced to Asheville as a child (back when Bele Chere was a thing), Samantha has been coming here on and off since 2004, when her grandparents first retired in Black Mountain, NC.

As an adult, Samantha graduated from Warren Wilson College in Swannanoa, NC. An official Asheville local since 2013, Samantha has lived as far east as Black Mountain, as far north as Woodfin, as far west as Candler, and now resides just south of Asheville in Hendersonville, NC.

Samantha loves Asheville for its natural beauty, vibrant culture, and people that match its mountains. Owner of Organic Copy and Content, Samantha writes and does marketing for a variety of brands, ranging from nonprofits and local businesses to larger industry-disrupting corporations.

Passionate about mental wellness, Samantha is also self-publishing her own memoir in 2024 on the topic of overcoming childhood trauma and navigating mental health challenges and grief as an adult parent.

In her spare time, Samantha enjoys hiking with her husband, dog, and son. She also regularly horseback rides, and will talk your ear off about art, music, alternative wellness, and books. A foodie at heart, Samantha may be spotted in many of Asheville’s delicious eateries (when not eating a fantastic home-cooked meal from her husband and former Starstuff bandmate).

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