Ashley Furniture Searches Nation And Picks Davie

Published 12:00 am Friday, May 11, 2012

Welcome, Ashley Furniture. And Beaufurn, too. That old Davie County industry staple, furniture production, is making a remarkable comeback with the recent announcements that a major Ashley Furniture plant is moving to the old R.J. Reynolds Tobacco warehouse property on Baltimore Road and that Beaufurn is moving to the empty Jeffco building in Bermuda Run.
Maybe there is an end in sight for the economic malaise that has gripped us for four years. Increasingly, industry is finding it comfortable and wise to keep their factories at home.
Davie County once boasted a couple thousand furniture jobs with prestigious names. One by one those industries closed their doors as manufacturing moved overseas in pursuit of cheap labor. Proudly American, Ashley Furniture is now expanding from its Wisconsin roots to the South, picking the Davie site for a plant that will employ more than 500. Company leaders spoke glowingly of the business-friendly environment they have found here, leading N.C. Rep. Julia Howard to speculate the company could bring even more of its manufacturing base here in future years.
The news is positively heartening. It’s also a testimony to the hard work and dedication by local and state political leaders and industrial recruiter Terry Bralley, who plodded on despite waves of negative economic news in recent years.
RJR’s generous gift of its old site helped make luring Ashley Furniture possible.

Northeast’s Spring Snow

It snowed 5 inches in Groton, NY, on Sunday night — part of a spring storm that dumped snow across the Northeast. School was delayed two hours Monday morning. My old neighbors sent a Facebook message about their surprise weather.
I routinely check their weather whenever I think it’s bad here. At home, I worried about the impatiens I planted last week. The temperature Tuesday morning was 35, nippy enough but not cold enough to kill.

Bluebird Tenant Homes

For my recent birthday, I asked for more bluebird houses. I’ve always tried to follow the advice of Clemmons bluebird expert Bill Abbey, but I couldn’t post the new boxes in February and March as he recommends because my birthday is in April.
Some homeless bluebirds waited for me.
A pair built a nest in one box two days later. Another pair checked out a box a day after I put it on a fence post. I’m a bluebird landlord.
An old box at home had attracted bluebirds for years until …