THE EAST END/VALLEY STREET NEIGHBORHOOD
The East End is Rising!
East End/Valley Street is the oldest and most historically significant African-American neighborhood in Asheville. Once the center of African-American life in Asheville, the neighborhood is connected to The Block (Eagle, Market Streets) and Valley Street (now South Charlotte Street), which was the heart of the neighborhood until Urban Renewal. The Block — home of the historic YMI Cultural Center, a pharmacy, law offices, other businesses and recreation — was once a draw for African-Americans from the entire region where renowned celebrities and musicians from across the country performed.
It is in East End/Valley Street that almost all of the first African-American churches of various denominations were located—St. Matthias’ Episcopal, Nazareth First Missionary Baptist, Calvary Presbyterian, St. James’ AME, Hopkins Chapel AME Zion, and Berry Temple Methodist Episcopal. It is here that the city’s first school for black students was established—at St. Matthias’ in 1867. It was here that two of the most significant schools for African-Americans in the city were located—Allen High School, a private (Methodist) school for girls, and Stephens-Lee High School, a public school that became something of a community center and a center for black culture and education for the whole region in the mid-Twentieth Century.
In the 1970s, Asheville’s urban renewal projects changed everything. Long ignored by the city, the neighborhood’s infrastructure and many homes were in code violation. At that time a significant portion of the neighborhood was razed, not only changing the face of the neighborhood, but connections between families and friends were unalterably changed. Residents were dispersed all across the city — some never to return. Read more about East End/Valley Street and urban renewal here: Crossroads.
The neighborhood has recently seen a surge in development with infill building of apartments and single-family homes. For sale signs are popping up on parcels no one ever expected to be developed. That development, and closeness to town, has brought about a shift in demographics from predominately African-American family homes to many white families moving in. Located within a few minutes walk from downtown, the East End has become a location of choice for people looking for the “Asheville lifestyle.”
Reestablished in 2010, the East End/Valley Street Neighborhood Association has re-constituted itself.
Old and new residents are now working side by side in a concerted effort to re-create that lost sense of community, preserve and protect our rich African-American heritage, re-connect the two parts of what was once a single unified neighborhood, and make sure that the neighborhood and its residents are actively involved in any decisions affecting their future. Once again, as the Association’s motto boldly proclaims,“The East End Is Rising!”
The East End/Valley Street Neighborhood Association
Black Lives Matter
and will fight to end racism and unfair unjust treatment of
Racial prejudice changes when hearts change.
May 20, 2023
Come to Stephens-Lee for the
Community Yard Sale on
May 20 from 8am to 12pm.
Spring Clean and sell a little bit of everything!
$5 table reservation must be paid prior to May 15.
Contact Anthony Chavez at Stephens-Lee for more information at (828)350-2058
May 20, 2023
Come to Stephens-Lee for Bingo!
Prizes will be awarded to the
winner of each game. Win like never B4! Light refreshments served.
Saturday, May 20
1pm to 2:30pm
All ages are welcome!
Contact Stephens-Lee for more information at (828)350-2058
Dr. George Washington Carver Edible Park Work Day
May 26, 2023
There will be a community work day at the Dr. George Washington Carver Edible Park on Friday, May 26
from 2:30pm to 5:30pm.
The park is located at 30 George Washington Carver Avenue. There is parking in the Stephens Lee Recreation Center parking lot. Summer Whelden, from Bountiful Cities, will be guiding us. We will have some extra tools for folks to use as well as hand sanitizer, but any gloves, loppers, pruners or weeding tools you can bring are much appreciated. Masks are welcome but not required.
Every month we focus on mulching, light tree and shrub pruning, picking up trash and clearing invasives. We occasionally do some planting depending on the season and what’s available. We will include a hands on demo of each technique as well as a tour of the park. Come give your time and support to Asheville's first edible forest ecosystem! We look forward to seeing you!
The community workdays being presented for the residents of the City of Asheville are in partnership with the City of Asheville.
For the most up-to-date information, please visit the Dr. George Washington Carver Edible Park Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/Dr-George-Washington-Carver-Edible-Park-620672487948577
Advanced Directives Workshops
at Tried Stone Church
May 31 & June 28, 2023
There will be free Advanced Directives Workshops at Tried Stone Missionary Baptist Church. On Wednesday, May 31 at 6pm the workshop is on Estate Planning, and on Wednesday, June 28 at 6pm the workshop is on funeral/memorial planning. Food will be served.
Community Activities for Everyone to Enjoy
East End/Valley Street residents are close-knit and special. The goal of the East End/Valley Street Neighborhood Association is to enhance and improve the lives of the people who live here, worship here, or call it "home". Join us!
East End/Valley Street Neighborhood Association Meeting
June 8, 2023
There will be an East End/Valley Street Neighborhood Association Meeting held on Thursday, June 8, 2023 at 6pm at St. James AME Church in the Fellowship Hall, 44 Hildebrand Street. There will be visitors talking about affordable housing and missing middle housing. Missing middle housing is defined as house-scale buildings with multiple units in walkable neighborhoods.
This meeting is for East End/Valley Street residents only. If you are not a resident and would like to present something to the neighborhood, please contact us (EastEndValleyStreet@gmail.com), so that we can see about fitting you into the agenda.
Masks are welcome but not required!
We hope to see you there!
East End/Valley Street
August 26, 2023
2023 East End/Valley Street Community Heritage Festival
The 2023 East End/Valley Street Community Heritage Festival will take place in MLK Park, 50 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drive in Asheville on Saturday, August 26 from 10am to 10pm. There will be live music, vendors, food trucks, and a children’s area. The East End/Valley Street Community Heritage Festival Parade starts at 10am on Saturday from the corner of Martin Luther King Jr. Drive and Alexander Drive to MLK Park. The children’s area will be open from 10am to 7pm. No animals please. East End/Valley Street is Asheville's oldest African-American Neighborhood. This is an alcohol free, family friendly festival! Come celebrate with us! Everyone is welcome! www.eastendvalleystreet.org/community-heritage-festival