Sunday, November 29, 2009

Post Thanksgiving Update


The Thanksgiving Holiday week has put updates behind. The Claxton's have cleared the old barn site and have prepped it to begin construction. They are still settling on a plan, so I don't have any renderings to post at this time.

We have had 9 "post fire" event bookings. These folks are taking advantage of our temporary booking policy which allows them to reserve their date at Claxton Farm for a minimal refundable deposit until they have time to review the new venue plan.

I believe that we will have more regular updates this week.

Best regards,


Monday, November 16, 2009

Update from Joe Lasher


I met with Porter and Martha Ann Claxton today. Their architect is working hard on plans. We're getting closer to releasing the design of the new barn. I can tell you that the roof line will be similar to the old barn. We will have a solid floor and post & beam construction with high ceilings. We're anticipating a nice deck overlooking the pond. It's important to Martha Ann that events on the Farm are focused as much on the outdoors as possible. We're working in that direction.

More later,


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Update from Claxton

Joe & M7:

I will try to keep you up to date with our progress at the Flat Top as we go along: We knocked down the Bathrooms yesterday and took a load to the Landfill; however, they wouldn't take it because it was a burned product. One has to wait 2 weeks before they will take burned debris. Too bad we didn't know this ahead of time. This will delay our process, but we will continue to work on the site. We hope to knock down the storage room today if we get it cleaned up inside. We cut off the septic drain to protect it and the water line to the BR. As you may know we have temporary power back up so that the water can get to the cows. We have taken 3 loads of metal to Biltmore Iron including the golf cart remnants. There is probably one more to go.

Monday, November 9, 2009



I visited the old barn site today at 1:30 PM, less than one week after the fire. Heavy equipment was on site. The site has not been fully released by the powers that be. Equipment is in place for clean up as soon as that release happens. We met with the Architect and Builder last Friday morning and handed over schematics and conceptual drawings for the new barn structure. There will be 3 dimensional renderings available to view ASAP.

We've had an overwhelming showing of support from our friends and community. Words can't express what that means to the M7 and Claxton Farm Families. We are looking forward to hosting our first event on May 1, 2010 and MANY more events in the future.

All the best,


Joe Lasher, President
M7 Event Solutions and Catering
Operating Claxton Farm Events since 1996

Friday, November 6, 2009

Progress Report


I can't tell you how impressed I am with the Buncombe County Sheriff's Dept and our Arson investigators. They have done a superb job and are still working the criminal investigation.

Today at 9:30 AM, we are meeting with Builder and Architect. Preliminary design of the new barn has been drawn. We'll work with the architect to have renderings and plans available for posting on this blog very soon.

Clean up of the burn site will begin as soon as investigators release the site. We anticipate resuming client tours NEXT weekend.

Please subscribe to this Blog if you wish to have regular updates...and...please feel free to forward it to anyone who is connected to Claxton Farm.


Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Letter from M7 President, Joe Lasher


We are all saddened by the loss of our historic Barn at Claxton Farm. As you may or may not know, M7 Event Solutions was essentially formed on that Flat Top lawn in front of that old barn in February of 1996 when Martha Ann Claxton and I met to discuss possibilities. Over the last 14 years, we’ve grown into the company that we are today. The barn evolved with our company over the years with the addition of lights, then restrooms, then stage and bar area modifications. After that came beverage equipment, refrigeration equipment and more storage. A new roof was added and more electricity to accommodate the growing demand. We modified and modified the old barn, always trying to keep the rustic simplicity and charm. It is tragic to lose all of the history and effort that went into making the barn what it was in the end.

I was out of town when the fire occurred Monday evening and cut my trip short. As I drove across NC, I thought of all the personal events that have happened for me in that old barn. My son’s first birthday party; my grandparents 50th anniversary; my sister’s wedding; my tenth anniversary celebration; and countless other personal moments. I did not know what emotions would flow when I saw the charred remains of the building. As I rounded the curve and turned into the gravel drive leading up the barn site, my spirits were lifted. Yes, the barn was gone, but the view and setting were more clear and more majestic than I’d ever seen. I realized that I was experiencing Claxton Farm like I did the FIRST time I met Martha Ann in the winter of 1996. My heart and mind were flooded with possibility!

Shortly after I arrived at the site and had spoken with the investigators, I moved to the side of the Flat Top to reflect on the situation. Porter Claxton drove up and exited his vehicle. We met on the Flat Top lawn like we have 1000 times before, but in this new setting. His first comment was “Joe, this has opportunity written all over it”. He doesn’t know it, but he got the words out before I could.

Folks, I want you to know that the plan is DEFINITELY to regroup and rebuild. And, although the old barn is a tragic loss, we have the opportunity to recreate all that was GREAT about the barn….the charm and simplicity of design….and put it into a fully functional event venue that will allow us to introduce even more people to our mountains and the majesty of Claxton Farm through events held well into the future. We are meeting and discussing this immediately and regularly and will continue to do so until the plans are in place and construction has begun.

Please forward this letter to all past, present and future Claxton Farm Clients. They need to know that we have set up a BLOG at that they can visit for updates and to share their comments and stories. I strongly encourage anyone that is considering their event at Claxton Farm in 2010 to go forward with securing their date now. Plans will be unveiled over the coming weeks. If they are dissatisfied with the direction we are going, then deposits will be refunded. I truly believe that we are taking a huge step to reassure the community and our industry partners that Claxton Farm will REMAIN a premier event destination long into the future.

Thank you so much for your work and efforts during this time!

With much appreciation,


Joe Lasher, President
M7 Event Solutions & Catering