Bear Paw



Spring/Summer                                  May 2018


                   Hello and Happy Spring to my Bear Paw family!

 I hope the new year brought you new adventures and experiences. It's been a busy place here in our little corner of heaven. Thanks to a terrific board and an amazing group of people in the office (Dennis Strand, Emily Bryant, Claude and Jamie Hughes). So much has been accomplished this year to improve Bear Paw.

                        I learned that the Bear Paw Service District is not a Home Owners Association, like many of us are familiar with in our other residences. The Bear Paw Service District is actually an arm of the county government. We are bound by very specific procedures, laws and requirements. Our money, used for upkeep and repair, is tax money; that is carefully overseen by an independent auditor. We must justify all expenditures with correct paperwork and procedures, documentation and certification of vendors. Kudos to Dennis Strand, Tricia Swiger, and Emily Bryant for the hours and hours and hours spent reading By-Laws and following up on former actions that occurred during the time our former manager was here. Together we have organized and realized (hopefully) all the proper processes the government requires of us. Tricia and Dennis have worked tirelessly to bring our finances and banking procedures into the 21stCentury.  We have switched our bank to B.B. &T. We found we receive better corporate services form this institution, and they are  more accommodating to our business needs. We receive better interest rates for our holdings, and they are linked to our new payroll service ADP.  Prior to this service, employees were paid by hand written paper checks. We now have a direct deposit system for all employees. These institutions will also assist with tax forms and filings and with #421 tax forms. This transition has not just modernized our financial system, but it has saved us approximately $2000. 
          Another great move for Bear Paw was “shopping around” for Liability and Workers Compensation Insurance. First time it has been done in many years. We will receive the same coverage amount from the same companies at a savings of $2,000.

        Some very large projects that were completed this year were the purchase of 3 new pool pumps; new carpeting for pool area and a new drainage system around the tennis courts. We are looking into resurfacing and re-striping of tennis courts if budget permits. We are also looking into re-striping Village Road.
       I'm still the road guy, because Andy Russell was my mentor. This year we completed paving of Trout, Sleepy Hollow, Pike Trail and Ridgewood Cir. Gravel was spread on Gracie Ln. If you have any paving concerns, please contact Dennis Strand at the Bear Paw office.

       I would like to also give a shout out to the Ladies Auxillary (because my wife told me to). They purchased and had a changing station installed in the clubhouse ladies room, for all our grand children. Thank you ladies.
       It is now time to thank the outgoing board members for their service, and ask some of you to consider running for the board. I would like to extend my appreciation, on behalf of all of us to Pat Roberts, one of our most positive board members, Ron Taylor who did an amazing job with the Fire Wise Project and community clean ups, and Trish Swiger, our treasurer, who spent endless hours updating our financial program, organizing records and deciphering all that that job entails. If you see them, thank them for a big job, well done.
            BUT NOW --- these folks need to be replaced. So please consider donating some time. If you are interested in running, please contact Emily Bryant in the Bear Paw office, and let her know. 
            Please keep checking the website for some very important meetings in May. May 5 is the budget meeting and May 26 which is elections of new board members.

            Summer is fast approaching....our favorite time of year. Keep checking our website for so many fun activities. (pot lucks, parties, concerts, parades, garage sale, craft fair and so much more)  Remember to donate for the fireworks at the marina. So many of us enjoy them. It's an expensive undertaking.

            Have a happy, healthy and enjoyable spring and summer season. See you on the lake!! 

                                                                        Al Snaider


The annual meeting of the Bear Paw Property Owners Association (BPPOA) is May 26, 2018 at 1:00 PM in the BearPaw Clubhouse. The proposed agenda includes discussion of last, current and next year’s plans/activities and election of directors for the BPPOA Board. You may vote in person or by proxy, a copy of which is enclosed in this newsletter. If you vote by proxy, fill out the form completely and ensure it is filed, preferably by the person given your proxy, with the BPPOA Secretary at the Bear Paw Office before the meeting or mail your proxy to BPPOA, 60 Village Rd. Murphy, NC 28906. Remember, one vote per lot regardless of the number of co-owners; and taxes must be current. 

Four directors will be elected at this meeting. A director must be a BPPOA property owner in good standing throughout his/her term of office, must be 21 years of age and can serve a maximum of two consecutive two-year terms. Any qualified member may officially declare their candidacy at the meeting. BPPOA directors will be submitted to the Cherokee County Commissioners to become Bear Paw Service District Directors. If you are interested in running for a position on the Board, please contact Dennis or Emily at the office (828) 644-0808. The Following Candidates have expressed a desire to be involved with the operations of Bear Paw and will be running for the Board:

Lydia Kennedy
I am a retired Nurse and have been coming to Bear Paw since 2001. My husband Kevin had been coming here since 1980. He brought me here after we met at our 30 year High School reunion and got married. I fell in love with BP and we decided to buy property and build our own home. We have been here full time since 2013.
I have been active in the BP Ladies Auxiliary, BP Live! and the newly formed Community Action Committee (CAC).
I believe I can affectively represent the BP Community on the Board.

Gary Holmes 
I have been a small business owner in Georgia for over 20 years. I have owned property in Bear Paw for over two years and recently completed construction of a home on Beach Road. I have been married to my wife Angela for 32 years and have a teenage daughter. We expect to make Bear Paw our permanent residents in the next few years. I believe my business and interpersonal skills will be an asset to the Board and Bear Paw Community.

Did you know… 

BPSD gets money from our taxes to maintain the clubhouse, pool, tennis court, roads, guards and office staff. BPPOA gets no funding and puts together Community functions thru donations from property owners and fundraisers.

CAC (Community Action Committee) is a group of volunteer property owners who put together the functions for property owners to enjoy. Bear Paw Live! Is a group of volunteer property owners who have come together to arrange Entertainment and is funded by ticket sales only, it makes no profit. BP Ladies Auxiliary are property owners (women) who have come together to enjoy each other’s company with monthly luncheons. We have an annual Garage sale and use the profits to purchase various items needed in Bear Paw and make donations in the community. All Bear Paw Property Owners are encouraged to participate.
The Bear Paw website is a good place to see what’s going on in our community and keep up to date on current activities. Please visit and look around.
Manager’s Report

     The winter months, although not producing much snow, did provide for prolonged cold spells and more than ample rainfall (and continues as I write this report). Hopefully the next few weeks will allow us to complete some of our in-process projects and to get going on others that Mother Nature has delayed. 

     You will see some new faces this year in our staff and at the property.  Two guards, Floyd and Don have retired. James, our previous weekend day guard has taken Don’s night shifts and we have hired Marc Loudermilk for Floyd’s Monday and Wednesday shifts.

     We have all been busy getting Bear Paw ready for our summer season opening. Emily, Claude, Jamie, the guards and I look forward to seeing you all again and making Bear Paw bigger and better. I have attached a list of those projects we have undertaken this winter as well as those expected to be done prior to Memorial Day or early summer. Lastly, do not hesitate to call us if we can be of any assistance. Our present winter season hours (Mon –Thurs, 10 am-2pm, closed Fri) will continue through Memorial Day after which we will be in the office Mon-Fri 8 am-4 pm) at least through Labor Day. Lastly, I have a tentative date to have the County inspect our pool during the first week of May with it being opened for use on or before Friday, May 25, 2018 (Friday before Memorial Day). Please refer to the Bear Paw web site as I will post the pool opening date as soon as possible.

See you soon, 

Dennis Strand 

BPSD Operations manger


Projects and Work Completed During the Winter Season

Replaced US and NC flags at entrance (flags received; replace prior to Memorial Day)
Repaired Lock at swimming pool gate
Replaced Basketball Nets
Replaced support bolts on basketball backboards
Replaced wood railing at upstairs rear clubhouse entry, Claude & Jamie
Trim back of common areas
Cut back shrubs, trees and plants at entrance, pool and common areas
Cut down dead pine and/or other trees at clubhouse, guard house and common areas and roads
Re-key office, clubhouse and establishing a personnel key list
Broke up and poured new concrete at steps to pool in Pavilion
Install indoor/outdoor carpeting on covered side of pool deck
Replaced pool signage and the restroom sign (Pavilion)
Installed diaper changing table in clubhouse Ladies Room
Installed child’s “spring Horse” in playground
Power washed guardhouse fences and rear walkway
Power washed BPSD entry pillars and stained wood rails

Winter Projects Still in Progress

Installing child’s spring horse in playground
Painting of wood rails at upstairs rear clubhouse entrance
Painting of guardhouse fences and walkway
 Sanding off and re-staining of “The Flame” monument
Re-surfacing of the Pavilion concrete floor
Power washing and repairing tennis court surface
Re-painting of the wall below the pavilion
Repairing of deteriorating concrete on the pool deck

Projects to be Completed by Memorial Day or Early Summer Season  

Cherokee County pool inspection in early May with anticipated Memorial Day opening (if not earlier should weather permit)
Replace Plants flowers/shrubs in BPSD common areas
Paint, benches, tables, etc. as needed
Paint tables under pavilion
Spread pine straw on hill adjacent to the pool
Paint wall at pavilion steps (Claude’s storage area)
Re-painting of white stripes on Village Road
Applying 2 coats of new surface material on Pavilion
Repairing and repainting the tennis court surface


Over the winter our greater community Firewise effort has produced several significant results.
As you know, the State of North Carolina awarded us an $8,000 grant last spring to improve identified roadway easements so that our volunteer fire department had better access to potentially high risk fire areas within Bear Paw. Seven priority areas were designated to be improved over the winter months using an experienced local contractor-Rose Excavation Services. The work can easily be seen on your next visit to Bear Paw:

                   Wildwood Dr.- Passing area created.
                   Arrowhead Dr. - Total road, dirt to gravel.
                   Cherryhill Dr. - Hillside excavation to new gravel roadway.
                   Lonesome Pine - Passing/turnaround area created. New culvert added.
                   Ridgewood Dr.- Passing/turnaround area created.
                   Sleepy Hollow - Passing area created.
                   Chittenden Dr. - Major brush removal length of ridge.

A major thank you needs to be extended to property owners Van Starbucks, Laurie Stevens, Thomas Smith, and the Cottage Owners Assoc. for their support and approval regarding their respective area. Thank you again.
Fire response and prevention moved forward in several regards. Last fall two homeowners (Steensma and Taylor) became registered members of the Hiwassee Dam Fire Department and in February both passed the fire truck driving test after attending a three-day weekend fire school at Lake Fontana. Their assignment when the call comes is to move our Bear Paw fire equipment to the fire site safely and prudently.
Our goal is to have 3 to 5 more local residents registered and trained to also fulfil this critical need. Remember with no available community trained volunteers to respond to the call our equipment will just sit, and our fire will then be serviced as in the past by the Hiwassee Dam equipment resulting in slower response time and the potential in the future of our equipment being moved to another station. We can’t let that happen.  ANYONE, male or female of all ages can contribute, so let’s get our local fire station staffed. If John and I can do it, so can YOU. It’s fun, challenging and certainly doable. Simply contact either of us and we can begin the discussion to see where you can contribute.
Hopefully, over the next two months a new grant application will be written and approved by North Carolina so that we can continue our community-wide Firewise efforts.  With approval, our focus next year is to formalize a community warning and evacuation plan including by area or Bear Paw “section” a recommended exit route, a homesite preparatory guide and steps to take when the need comes, a community and individual notification system and an “emergency only 2nd exit”.

As one regional fire chief recently said when this topic came up “can you imagine the confusion or chaos with a major forest fire within Bear Paw particularly in the summer time, with eight-ten fire departments responding with two-three trucks from each station, trying to come in and conversely 100 to 150 passenger cars trying to get out”. This grant money is needed and would be well spent.
Have a great summer. See you in Bear Paw.
Ron T.


   The 5th Season of the popular Bear Paw Live! concert series promises to be another block-buster this summer as we present three new and very diverse acts to our loyal audience.
  We kick off the 2018 season on Saturday, July 7, with BABY GRAY, a group recommended to us by Bear Paw residents, Pam and Brad Mueller. Once the committee heard BABY GRAY’S rendition of “Hallelujah,” we knew they would be a big hit in Bear Paw. 

BABY GRAY features Bobby Kennedy and Michelle Milligan, who will be joined for the Bear Paw concert by instrumentalist Jimmy Gillis. All three perform regularly with the award-winning band Southern Satisfaction where Michelle is the lead vocalist and mesmerizes crowds with her ability to transform from a country singer like Jennifer Nettles to the crooning voice of Adele or Etta James. Bobby is a multi-instrumentalist as well as providing spot-on harmonies with Michelle. Jimmy frequently tours alone and is comfortable on a variety of string instruments which, along with an occasional vocal, adds additional richness to the BABY GRAY sound. Known for their soul, country, pop, funk and blues standards, they promise to perform music that will have you up dancing as well as happily relaxing and listening to their smooth harmonies. As members of the Southern Satisfaction band, these three talented entertainers have performed on stages from Naples, Florida to the Ryman Auditorium in Nashville, Tennessee.

On Saturday, August 11, we will introduce the immensely talented and versatile CHARLES “CC” CARTER and his ONE-MAN BAND to our Bear Paw audience. Charles was enthusiastically recommended to us by Norm and Linda Owen who follow him in Hattiesburg, MS, where he is based. Charles is a phenomenal singer and musician with over 30 years in the entertainment business. In addition to his vocals, CC plays flute and saxophone, which combined with his expert sound-mixing talent, results in his billing as a one-man band. Charles has entertained for appreciative audiences throughout the southeast and promises to keep the dancers in the audience on their feet dancing along to his high energy performance while also entertaining those who just want to sit back, listen and watch.

 Closing out the season on Saturday, September 1, is the CHUCK NATION BAND, a world class ensemble of award winning performers. Close harmony vocals and superb instrumental playing are hailed as the hallmarks of their distinctive sound. Whether it is bluegrass, country, folk/Americana or originals, Chuck and his band deliver professional grade, lively music that engages and entertains an audience from the first moment they take the stage. The CHUCK NATION BAND was a 2016 Georgia Music Awards nominee for artist of the year, received a standing ovation for their Carnegie Hall debut in 2015 and performed at the historic Ryman Auditorium in Nashville in 2016. Additionally, the band has toured internationally in Ireland and China the last few years and will be returning to China for a folk festival this summer.  Chuck, who is skilled on a variety of stringed instruments, is joined by his wife Susan Nation (acoustic bass), Jody Hughes (guitar/banjo), Libby Nation (mandolin/guitar/piano) and Steven Vincent (drums). All are accomplished musicians and award winners in their own right and promise an evening of outstanding entertainment. 

For those of you who may not know our history, Bear Paw Live! was started 5 years ago with the hope that it would be successful enough to be self-sustaining. Thanks to your enthusiastic support and an occasional contribution, we have managed to bring high quality entertainment to Bear Paw and have broken even each year.  However, as the cost of providing the quality and variety of entertainers you want and deserve has continually increased, our goal of breaking even has gotten harder!

In order to continue providing outstanding entertainment for your enjoyment, the BPL! Committee has decided that the time has come to make a slight increase in ticket prices. Consequently, the price for reservations made and paid for in advance will now be $12.00 – the deadline for this price is 5:00 PM, the Friday night before the concert.  On the Saturday of the concert and at the gate the price will now be $15.00 and the price for children under 13 will continue to be $5 anytime. We will still maintain a reservation list at the gate and you will check in as always and receive a sticker showing that you have paid.

All concerts will be held at the Pavilion (rain or shine) and start at 7:30 PM. We encourage you to put the Bear Paw Live! 2018 dates on your calendar now and plan to join us at the Pavilion for a great evening visiting with neighbors and friends along with an opportunity to dance - a little or a lot - or just chill out and listen to the music. Don’t forget to bring a comfy chair and whatever you want to eat or drink.

For reservations or information, please call Caroline Elkin, 828/644-5113 or Gail Taylor, 828/644-9566. To recommend performers for future concerts, please call Ginger Webster, 828/644-5807 or Eileen Humphlett, 828/644-9374.




                                              AUGUST 11 – CHARLES (CC) CARTER’S ONE MAN BAND


(Bear Paw Ladies Auxiliary)

The BPLA is a ladies group that put ideas and efforts together to add value to our Bear Paw community.  All ladies in Bear Paw are welcomed to join. Call 644-0835 for more information.
Each year we work together to put on an annual garage sale.  The proceeds are then used to enhance Bear Paw and our surrounding area.  Last year we assisted several teachers at Hiwassee Dam School, who often have to spend their own money to complete classroom projects, by discovering their needs and funding them.  We purchased a baby-changing table for the Bear Paw ladies room.  We supported the CAC (Community Action Committee) by contributing funds for their many Bear Paw activities.  In the past the picnic tables, new Bear Paw flags, the large fans for events, rugs, yoga equipment, pool lounge chairs and much more have all made available to by these ladies.  Not to mention the historic pictures and free library in the clubhouse.
We have 2 meetings a year. A spring and fall luncheon held in the upstairs room of Bear Paw clubhouse.  We each bring a dish to share, have fun and plan our goals.
Save the Date!  Garage Sale
The Bear Paw Ladies Auxiliary will hold their annual garage sale July 28th from 8:00 am till noon.

                                                                         BPLA Annual Garage Sale

                                                                                   Saturday, July 28th, 2018

                                                                                            8am to 12pm

                                                       Volunteers requested for: Pre-pricing Sat. July 20th 9am
                                                                                                   Pre-pricing Friday July 27th 9am

Marie Steensma is the coordinator.  We need men and women volunteers to price, set up tables and move large items out of the skate room.  Please call Marie at 407-312-8707.
Donations are now being accepted now and can be placed in or in front the skate room under the pavilion. Your contributions are appreciated.  Please remember no cloths or old TV’s NO MATTRESSES OR BOX SPRINGS. All proceeds will go toward community improvement projects.
 We are looking forward to another great year.  Thanks to all the ladies and to all of you who support our efforts.  Join in and make a difference!

BPLA Spring Luncheon

Tuesday, May 22 at 11:30 upstairs room of the clubhouse.
Bring a salad or dish to share, drinks provided
Please RSVP by May 21st at or call 644-0835 so we are certain to have a seat for you.

Bear Paw Information
If you haven’t, Please fill out the Homeowner’s/Property Owner’s Information Sheet provided in this newsletter and return to the office at:
60 Village Rd., Murphy, NC 28906. This will ensure that our property owner records are kept current and you are kept informed. 
  911 Property Addressing: It has been brought to our attention that there are many properties that still do not have their 911 address sign posted. Having your address displayed will help emergency personnel such as fire trucks, ambulance and law enforcement identify your home or property in case of an emergency.

Volunteers Always Appreciated
More and more is happening every day in Bear Paw.  Volunteers greatly enhance the quality of life in our community by maintaining flower beds, assisting in the office, sponsoring social events, and helping with local charitable activities.  If you’d like to contribute and/or be involved, contact Emily in the office (828-644-0808).Bear Paw would like to say “Thank You” to our volunteers who keep Bear Paw beautiful. Many hours of hard labor are spent each year to keep our flower gardens looking beautiful so that we may all enjoy them, so to all of you, we say thank you.

Bear Paw 
 Next Scheduled Meetings

May 5         BPSD Budget Hearing

May 26       BPSD Regular Meeting

*May 26       BPPOA Annual Meeting

July 7          BPSD Organizational Mt

All meetings are in the Clubhouse at 9:00 AM after a ten minute recess the BPPOA meeting will begin except for the Annual BPPOA meeting.

*The BPPOA ANNUAL meeting on May 26th including election of officers will be held at AT 1:00 PM


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​Disclaimer:  The information provided in the website is for information purposes only and does not obligate the BPPOA in any way.  The information is not authoritative and is not to be considered definitive in any manner.  The BPPOA is not responsible for the accuracy of the content of the website though the BPPOA will strive to update information as it becomes available.