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Originally published: 2012-09-11 16:41:18
Last modified: 2012-09-11 16:41:18

Our View: BSG still on a roll

Thumbs-up: to a sizable donation -- $50,000 -- presented to the American Red Cross following the Blood, Sweat and Gears bike ride held in June. The money will fuel two funds that assist with disaster relief in Watauga and Avery counties. Donation funds from the event will also benefit the volunteer fire departments that assisted with the ride. Plans are in gear for the 2013 ride, and that's a future boon not only for our nonprofit groups, but our community: In 2010, one study indicated that the event boosted the local economy by nearly $900,000 from out-of-town participants.

Thumbs-down: to the West Nile virus. The virus appears to be working its way across the state, and although about 80 percent of people infected with the virus will show few or no symptoms, it can be serious -- as attested to by two recent deaths in North Carolina. Nationwide, 66 people have died this season from the mosquito-borne illness. Mosquito repellent and eliminating standing water where possible are two early steps to take for anyone spending time outdoors.

Thumbs-up: to you, if you've registered to vote. If you haven't, now's the time to do so. Official registration to vote in this year's presidential election ends Oct. 12, and although you could still register during the early voting period, there will be no such opportunity on Election Day. Something else to consider: If you've moved since you last registered, you need to fill out a registration form to update your address and other information. Early voting begins Oct. 18 and ends Nov. 2. Call the Board of Elections office at (828) 265-8061 if you have questions about registering.