- May 24, 2021
- Celebrating 10 Years in the Real Southern Hot Spot
The heart of any city is its downtown, where restaurants, boutiques, lawyers, hair salons, theaters, and many more enjoy the bustling hum of commerce. On May 25, 2011, Main Street welcomed an unconventional new retailer to its growing chorus of Downtown Columbia institutions when the Mast General Store opened its doors.
- July 18, 2018
- We're KEEN on That!
According to the MacMillan Dictionary, to be “keen” on something is to be interested in something and enjoying it, especially an activity that you do often. This year, we are keen on helping KEEN celebrate its 15th year of innovation and adventures. As a brand born to get people outdoors, KEEN started its journey by asking “Can a sandal also protect your toes?” In 2003, the answer was a resounding “yes,” and the KEEN Newport was born. Millions of adventures later, KEEN is taking its business to new heights with UNEEK options and an ever-expanding line of shoes to allow you to lead the hybrid life.
- October 5, 2016
- Stanley – Loved By Generations
Though it’s made great strides in mass appeal over the past decade, the vacuum steel bottle is not a new product. Well over 100 years ago, a Massachusetts man, William Stanley, invented this ingenious bottle. With over 100 patents to his name, Stanley was a major inventor during the golden age of electric development. Thanks to this prolific engineer, we have the pleasure of enjoying our cold drinks staying cold and our hot beverages remaining piping hot due to Stanley’s ingenious all-steel vacuum bottles.
- December 2, 2015
- Christmas Cheer Then and Now in Winston-Salem
When Mast Store’s newest old location opened its doors in Winston-Salem this past May, we had the pleasure of meeting a woman with close ties to 516 North Trade Street. In the late 1930s and early 1940s, Barbara Carter’s father worked in the building that boasted one of the largest retail and wholesale companies in the South: Brown-Rogers-Dixson (B-R-D). After her visit to our Mast Store grand opening in the very same building, Mrs. Carter wrote us saying, “It brought back fond childhood memories of my father and mother, both now deceased, bringing us to visit with Santa at the store.”
- April 23, 2015
- Crafting for the 21st Century
It used to be roots and herbs and crops and chickens that folks brought to the Mast General Store in historic Valle Crucis for trade. Today, the items "traded" are more along the lines of baskets, birdhouses, bread, homemade butter, and hand-turned bowls. Although the products may have changed, the intent is still the same - the Mast Store provides a marketplace for local and regional residents and artists to present the fruits of their efforts.
- March 4, 2015
- Remembering the Valle with Blanche Hodges Kohnle - Part Two
Reflecting on her own childhood, Blanche describes her dad, Clingman Hodges, as “the greatest musician”. He mastered the banjo, mandolin, and auto harp . Each morning, he’d awaken the children for school and their mother’s fresh made biscuit breakfast by picking a cheerful tune on the banjo.
- February 24, 2015
- Remembering the Valle with Blanche Hodges Kohnle - Part One
Last year, a beautiful, petite, and cheerful 96-year-old woman and her son stopped by the Mast Store in Asheville and visited with us for a while. Many Mast guests with rich histories and even richer stories pass through our doors every day, but this guest was particularly special because she holds the keys to the history of our beloved Valle. Valle Crucis – the birthplace of Mast General Store.
- January 20, 2015
- Sock Monkeyin' Around
LaVerna arrived for work in the Home and Hearth Department at the Asheville Store one morning and watched carefully as a woman casually walked through the store with two companions.
- January 12, 2015
- The Holidays Revisited
For my family, the holiday season isn’t complete without a reading of Dylan Thomas’ “A Child’s Christmas In Wales”. Everyone’s favorite ornament on the tree is a wide-mouthed Santa who, when you squeeze his cheeks, offers a chocolate kiss. And each stocking gets a beautiful, large navel orange in the bottom of the toe, just like my Swedish cousins have done for generations.
- August 22, 2014
- Neighbors Helping Neighbors
Waynesville resident, Carl Hughes, is not the kind of fellow who backs down from a serious challenge. As a construction supervisor for Chevron in Angola, Carl was familiar with malaria symptoms, having suffered through it eight times during his many trips abroad. But when his co-worker’s daughter died from the vicious mosquito-borne disease, he was dumbstruck. During a one-month break at home, he resolved to create an insect repellant which would stop the spread of malaria. His research and experimentation led to the creation of Whup-a-Bug.