Montreat Minute 08/05/22

Montreat Receives Second Payment of COVID ARPA Funds

Earlier this week, the Town received the second and final round of COVID American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds in the amount of $136,633. We received an equal amount last year. Typical of the Federal government, there are some restrictions on what the funds can be used for, but they are not overly restrictive. We will use some of the funds toward a new emergency generator for the water wells and for mandatory water tank inspections.

Last year, some of the funds were used to repair the second round of damage on Greybeard Trail and to purchase the new financial software. Between last year’s remaining balance and this year’s, we have slightly more than $86,000 that can be used for Town projects. Decisions for use of the remaining funds must be made by the end of 2024. We are fortunate to have these funds, giving relief to our capital budget.

Montreat Landcare Committee Moving Forward with Accessible Trail

The Montreat Landcare Committee is raising funds for a new accessible trail, Flat Creek Crossing. The goal is to create a welcoming way for people who otherwise might not get to enjoy Flat Creek because of physical limitations. 

The Committee has created an “appropriate” fundraising opportunity for the new trail. Montreat resident Jim Williamson, retired architect and professor of architecture, has allowed the committee to reproduce three of his beautiful watercolor scenes of Montreat— ready to frame (at $65 each) or as notecards (10 for $35). The Landcare Committee receives all the profits from any sales. Purchases can be made with cash or check at the Montreat Post Office on Tuesday, August 2 through Friday, August 5, 9:30am to 12:30pm. Thank you for your support of this important project.

Mark Your Calendar for the PHC Tour of Homes Next Weekend, August 13 & 14

The Presbyterian Heritage Center is happy to announce the reprise of the very popular Tour of Homes on Saturday and Sunday, August 13 and 14, from 2:00 to 5:00pm. Tour eight historic homes and buildings including the Billy Graham Evangelical Association office. A general brochure listing the homes is available with ticket purchase.

Tickets are a suggested donation of $15/person, cash or check made payable to the Presbyterian Heritage Center.

Tickets are being pre-sold and are available at the PHC Front Desk (318 Georgia Terrace in Montreat), Monday & Saturday, noon-4:00 pm, or Tuesday-Friday, 10:00-4:00 pm or at the Montreat Post Office, Monday-Friday, August 1-5, 10:30am – 2:00 PM. Come see some historic Montreat homes and support the Presbyterian Heritage Center.

Town Council Meeting August 11, at 7:00pm

The Montreat Town Council will meet for its monthly meeting next Thursday, August 11 at 7:00pm in the Town Hall. The meeting will include a public hearing on a request to close a portion of a public right-of-way. For details on the request, CLICK HERE.

For a copy of the agenda, CLICK HERE. The meeting will be live streamed and recorded. For information about streaming the meeting, CLICK HERE. The Public Forum will begin at 6:30pm. Everyone is invited.

Did You Know?

Stunt Day 1912

Montreat was always intended to have a lake.  The earliest map of the area indicates a “proposed lake” essentially where Lake Susan is now and called Montreat Lake.  The first dam was a wooden structure that leaked more often than not. Nonetheless the lake attracted many swimmers and hosted Stunt Day each summer.  The photo above is from Stunt Day 1912. 

Some people in Montreat were not pleased with the bathing attire they were seeing.  In August 1914 the Managing Committee voted that bathing suits “must have sleeves extending at least half way from the shoulder to the elbow, and skirts or pants extending below the knees.  Any person or persons violating this ordinance shall be fined from ($1.00) dollar to five ($5.00) dollars and cost of the action.”  Evidently this fine did not have the desired effect because five years later, in August 1919, the Managing Committee again addressed the issue by voting to “condemn the use of immodest suits by males and females.”  The committee did not define “immodest” but asked that people “provide themselves with bathing suits such as are prescribed in the ordinances and rules of Montreat.” 

Compliance continued to be a problem. On August 21, 1921, Stunt Day, a resolution was read to the public indicating that people violating the swimsuit regulations would not be allowed to use the lake.  That didn’t work either.  Finally, in July 1925 the Board of Directors referred the matter to the Women’s Civil Club, asking that the women ”talk this matter up and see if they cannot induce bathers to wear costumes which will conceal more of the person than those now worn . . .”  President Anderson was to report back to the Board at the next meeting.  That report seems not to have been made. 

Perhaps it was time to give up on such matters, since less than a year later the Board repealed an ordinance on the books since 1915 banning the sale of cola drinks in Montreat. Life was changing in Montreat!

Updates and Reminders

  • Support our Montreat Post Office by buying stamps. Our Post Office is very dependent upon income from stamps and package postage. Even if you are not a full time resident, please buy your stamps from the Montreat Post Office. We don’t want our Post Office to go away due to lack of business.
  • The Town Sanitation Staff has been overwhelmed by the volume of trash this summer. Please remember several important facts about sanitation pick up:
    • Do not put any bags out that are not in bear proof containers except on the morning of pickup. If you rent your house out, please make sure renters know about this policy. Sanitation staff should not have to pick up residents’/renters’ trash strewn by bears and other wildlife.
    • No matter your location, please have your trash out by 8:00am on pick up day
    • Please tie trash bags to facilitate removal by the sanitation team
    • If you have cardboard boxes or other cardboard, please break down the boxes and lay all cardboard together


Do you have Town-related questions  you would like answered? If so, please send them to Angela Murphy at [email protected] and we will get back to you as soon as possible.

Have a great weekend!