Today’s batch of burning questions, my smart-aleck answers and the real deal:

Question: Why has the Biltmore Estate doubled the fee for its annual pass? How are local residents expected to pay this much? Will any discount offerings be forthcoming? And is their visitation back to normal where they can afford to do this?

My answer: This is why the last time I used my annual pass at the estate, I came home with the bronze statue of Cedric the St. Bernard in the back of my truck. Wine may have been involved…

Real answer: First of all, the “doubled the fee” comment is off base.

“That is not accurate,” estate spokeswoman LeeAnn Donnelly said via email. “Price of a Biltmore Annual Pass has only increased by $30 since 2018. Annual renewal of a pass is offered at a reduced rate. The renewal fee has increased $10.”

You can find more information about the annual pass program at

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