Meet the Innkeepers
Meet Dan and Nancy
...Your Friendly Asheville area Bed and Breakfast Innkeepers
It’s a cliche that innkeepers are disaffected corporate exiles, the former mavericks and loose cannons in the offices and cubicles. That was true with Dan, at least.
After 23 years working in newsrooms across the Southeast, he was on the verge of going to an open window like Howard Beale in Network and yelling, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not going to take it anymore!” But this story is about more than running from corporate tedium and politics. It’s about returning to what matters.
Nancy was a teacher. She really is still a teacher, though she gave up the classroom in 1999, her second year at Inn on Main Street. Nancy nurtures. She’s patient with those who drive some of us to distraction. She taught mentally handicapped children, emotionally disturbed children, and children with all sorts of multiple handicaps for more than 20 years. She knows how blessed most of us are. Beneath the flaws, we’re all unique and wonderful people.
When he wasn’t a reporter and editor, Dan was an explorer. He takes off after new interests like a puppy following a June bug. That curiosity got him into journalism, but also got him into world travel, into home remodeling, into organic farming, into art, into cooking and eventually into hospitality (where else can you meet more interesting people than the average reporter?). Even now he pursues an arts career, making handmade tiles, including those shown in buttons throughout this site. He’s a jack of all trades, a dilettante, a poor man’s Renaissance man.
Dan and Nancy each grew up near Chicago and met at Southern Illinois University, but their story is set mainly in North Carolina. They were married on top of Table Rock near Morganton. Their daughters were both born in the North Carolina mountains, in Spruce Pine and Asheville. The first home they owned was a three-room cabin on 13 acres near Old Fort, NC, a tiny farm with dairy goats, chickens, too many dogs and a huge organic garden. That first home and a few soulful friendships were a siren song that kept calling them to the mountains when they moved to Savannah, then Fort Lauderdale, then Charlotte. When it came time to go it alone, there was only one place to go.
Come Experience the North Carolina Mountain beauty
Even in the ’70s, when there was no talk of a cosmic vortex in Asheville, the North Carolina mountains were a magnet for the young, the artistic and the rugged. They hosted hundreds of hippies who didn’t panhandle or go shoeless, but who farmed a dozen acres, drank from the spring and heated with wood. The goal was to live a holistic existence, a lifestyle that was green and sustainable. These back-to-landers bonded with natives who shared mountain folklore, music, dance and love of the outdoors with them. Dan and Nancy were among them.
Then, as now and before, a large percentage of people lived an artistic life. Dan and Nancy’s friends made wind chimes, woodcarvings and pottery. Asheville was a town full of characters and iconoclasts. In that respect it has changed little.
Then, as now and before, Asheville was also a magnet for the well-to-do, mostly in the form of former Floridians in search of three more seasons. Transplants gave Asheville a cosmopolitan feel that was lacking in the rural areas. They demanded more cultural and medical options than a town this size would normally provide, and the result was what one writer in the 1800s presciently called the Paris of the South. The current influx of retirees and professionals has fueled the trend toward a more colorful and diverse cultural scene.
Weaverville, a bed and breakfast town
Weaverville represents another generation, perhaps another century, in the evolution of mountain living. It’s so quiet you can hear the cheering at the Little League games from more than a block away. When it looks like rain, everybody runs out to roll up the car windows. Few bother locking their cars.
After dinner at the Glass Onion, Jack of Hearts Pub, Blue Mountain Pizza (in Western North Carolina’s oldest commercial building), Main Street Grill, Well-Bred Bakery or Stony Knob Cafe, stroll through our town’s galleries and take in some live music. Guests often know more about Weaverville and its residents than they do about people in their own neighborhood. It’s a place conducive to meeting new people and chatting.
After an exhausting day of touring the Biltmore Estate, exploring Asheville’s shops and experiencing the colorful sidewalk performance that is Asheville, it’s a pleasant experience to kick off your shoes on the back porch to enjoy a cool drink and a view of the Blue Ridge Mountains.
It feels like coming home.
If there is an overriding theme at Inn on Main Street, it would be to embrace the healthy basics while focusing on your comfort. We make all our foods from scratch, including our muffins and breads. Our breakfasts normally are vegetarian, but we often serve turkey sausage or bacon to those who want breakfast meats.
We avoid using cleaning chemicals, deodorizers, fertilizers and pesticides, choosing instead to clean with natural and biodegradable cleaners like vinegar, citrus oils and baking soda. We’ve adopted the Green Hotels philosophy, which means we’ll forgo changing towels and linens as often if that is your choice, thus saving water and reducing wastewater. We warn guests with chemical sensitivities that we do our best to maintain an allergen-free environment, but offer no guarantees that nothing will affect them.
We cook with our own organically grown herbs and vegetables whenever possible, and buy from local organic farmers when we can.
Our in-room soaps, shampoos, conditioners and body lotions are organic and natural. Our soaps are hand made locally.
Our home is smoke-free, though we keep ash trays outside to accommodate smokers.
In consideration to guests who are sensitive to allergens, we do not accept pets. We do not even use potpourri. We will remove down pillows from your room on request.
“All was so easy and real. Nothing pretentious about this place.”
- Vicki and Bill F.
“We thank you for sharing your wonderful home, for your most generous hospitality, the gardens, the sense of peace and the ability to actually know what it feels like to be relaxed (!) Lightning bugs, the fountain, hummingbirds and wonderful muffins! What an excellent weekend.”
- Jason B.
"It was actually like magic there. I loved my room, relished in the beautiful bed, great bathtub. The host and hostess were kind and made the most delicious breakfast from their garden, even special baked goods for me because I am gluten free. I will carry my sweet stay with me now, because it was truly affecting. I recommend this special Inn!"
- Merlyn R.
"Peaceful energy and yummy food!"
- Betsy H.
"On behalf of my wife and I, I wanted to say thank you very much for a wonderful stay at your inn. The hospitality, our room and the meals were incredible."
"I don't believe there was anything you could have changed. The food was spectacular and the the conversation was stimulating."
- Tabitha and Bella G.
"The room was just right for us. Quaint. I liked it. Of course I like old buildings and history. The colors, matching accessories and style. Just what I expected for our first time ever staying at a B & B. Everything was great, even the cost."
- Leslie and Jimmy K.
"Sipping a glass of wine and some cheese on your back porch was a new and charming experience for us; as we continued our trip around the Southern States we were to discover this hospitality to be fairly typical, but nowhere did we find our hosts so generous in the sharing of their time and knowledge as we did at the Inn on Main Street. You made us feel very much at home."
- Kevin and Jenny C.
"I want to thank you for all the wonderful care you gave my parents during their visit with you. You helped make their 50th anniversary very special. They said they would highly recommend staying with you again. I hope some day to have the pleasure myself to stay with you as well."
- Amber F.
"Any time I'm reminded of our stay at the Inn, I've noticed that I get this warm smile on my face! "
- Sandy H.
"Brenna and I had a great stay with you in Weaverville and wanted to say thanks. The house was great and we particularly enjoyed your hospitality. The bath and soap products were also very nice as well as your environmentally responsible approach to everything. Thanks for making our weekend getaway so relaxing. Brenna is now 37 weeks pregnant and we’re just about ready to welcome our new addition. I’m sure there will be more weekend getaways to Asheville in our future!"
- Dan and Brenna S.
"We continue to rave about The Inn on Main Street and the wonderful time we had in Weaverville. Some of the gifts purchased at Miya Gallery are being given as Christmas gifts and are big hits."
- Anne W.
"I have been meaning to let you know how much the family enjoyed staying at your Inn.Your lovely porch and lovely garden are etched in my memory. Great breakfasts too.You are so very gracious and provide a most relaxed atmosphere."
- Merle E.