Page 1


the most widely distributed travel publication in the mountains


Blue Ridge & Great Smoky Mountains

The Doupnik family photo by Mike Koenig



Star t your nex t adventure at V isitNC Smokies .com/spring

Pack your bags GET FIRED UP FOR A TRIP


ome say the family road trip is experiencing a resurgence. In Haywood County, we don’t think it ever went away. For as long as we can remember, we’ve been serving up family-friendly adventures that are as sweet and delicious as a stack of pancakes or a plate of North Carolina barbecue.

Here, your whole family will discover the kinds of authentic experiences we’ve spent decades perfecting. From waterfall hikes to wildlife encounters, stunning overlooks to fishing trips, a Smoky Mountain adventure is one that stays with you. And once you’ve got a taste, you’ll want to come back again and again.

MEET THE LOCALS. We admit it: some of our residents can seem a little…wild. Take the Cataloochee Elk, for example. Their population has been growing since their re-introduction to the area in 2001. Spring and early summer are the perfect time to head to Cataloochee Valley and spy on the season’s new calves. For a more up-close-and-personal experience, book Breakfast with the Bison at Buffalo Creek in Clyde. Munch on local pastries before you head out to the fields with the rancher to watch the bison feeding, then enjoy some quality time with the farm’s llamas, goats, bunnies, and other furry critters. You can also stay the night on the property in a cabin or train

caboose. Yes, you read that right: a train caboose. That’s just one example of the unique accommodations you’ll find t hroughout our five m ountain t owns o f M aggie V alley, W aynesville, L ake Junaluska, Canton, and Clyde

••• REEL IN OUR HERITAGE Trout fishing has long been an important part of the culture here—and it just so happens to be a perfect family activity for sunny spring afternoons. Anglers of all ages can catch up to seven fish a day in the Mountain Heritage Trout Waters located throughout Maggie Valley and Waynesville. No gear? No problem. We’ll provide the reels for a refundable rental fee of only $5. Stop by our Visitor Center in Maggie Valley once you've purchased a three-day fishing license.

Bask in the Bounty Corn Mazes • Apple Orchards Wagon Rides • Baked Goods Pumpkins • Apple Cider

September through October Photo: Grandad’s Apples N’ Such



FALL 2021

Artists in the Smokies

Lookout Point For proof of the Smoky Mountains’ inspirational power, look no further than the exquisite Smoky Mountain paintings created by local Smoky Mountains artists. Shop for their imaginative works and take home perspectives of the Smoky Mountains region that no photograph can capture. The eight-mile Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Loop is a scenic drive you can take for some of the area’s finest art Smoky Mountains paintings.

Smokies Skyline

Smoky Spirits Pictured above are the works of three “can’t miss

galleries” for you to visit when you come to the Smokies.

The Robert Tino Gallery is located in a historic old farmhouse just north of Sevierville, just off Highway 66 812 Old Douglas Dam Rd, Sevierville, TN 37876 • 865-453-6315 Terri Waters Gallery is located on the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Loop 438 Bebb Road, Gatlinburg, TN 37738 (865) 436-5647 • Vern Hippensteal Gallery is located on the Great Smoky Arts and Crafts Loop 480 Buckhorn Road, Gatlinburg, TN 37738 (865) 436-4328 •

Visit Robert Tino’s Smoky Mountain Homecoming Festival (October 1-3, 2021)

44th Annual

Woolly Worm Festival

Worm Races . Cash Prizes Crafts . Food . Rides Live Entertainment

October 16 &17, 2021 Downtown Banner Elk, NC

Saturday 9-5|Sunday 9-4

FALL 2021





This gateway to mountain adventures is a hub for lounging and exploring.

This long-beloved lodge is much more than a simple hotel. It’s a place where adventurers, families, couples and large groups can explore by day, and recharge at night.

From here, you can hike majestic Sharp Top Mountain, “leaf peep” along Blue Ridge Parkway, cruise a shuttle to nearby wineries, and encounter rare wildlife. Enjoy a springtime getaway or a long winter weekend in the perfect setting for year-round adventure and relaxation.


Peaks of Otter Area Visitor Center and Park Store - 5,000 acres. Three Peaks: Sharp Top [El 3,875], Flat Top [El. 4,004], With more than 60 rooms, meeting and Harkening Hill [El. 3,364]. facilities, wedding facilities, a Self-guided trail, historic farm full-service restaurant, a lounge, and interpretive programs. Picnic a gift shop, Peaks of Otter Lodge is a area, campground, restrooms. perfect basecamp for exploring the mountains, lake and surrounding For more information on forests. No matter the season, guests packages and deals, visit can explore the Blue Ridge or way’s splendor, then enjoy warm call 888.454.7711 hospitality at Peaks of Otter Lodge.



ajestic scenery abounds in Peaks of Otter, a historic landmark and haven of natural beauty. Three towering mountain peaks and the serene Abbott Lake are the cradle of this

gorgeous Blue Ridge destination — offering 360 degrees of breathtaking wilderness. And here, sheltered among the ancient peaks and cooled by mountain streams, you’ll discover Peaks of Otter Lodge.



EXPERIENCE A BEAUTIFUL BLUE RIDGE FALL If you love fall foliage, you have to see the Blue Ridge Mountains this autumn. At Peaks of Otter Lodge, you can enjoy real Southern cuisine in the shadow of Sharp Top Mountain. Cruise along on one of America’s best road trips when the leaf peeping is at its best – now this is relaxation. Book your fall moment today at

PEAKSOFOTTER.COM | 866.387.9905

Hospitality managed by Delaware North


Founded in 1772

the story of Shenandoah County


t begins with around the time of the birth of our new Nation. Visit museums and cultural sites, immerse yourself in stories, artifacts and buildings that connect

us with our past, and the experiences that have shaped this region. In 2022, Shenandoah County will commemorate its 250th anniversary with a year-long celebration.

It will be a time to reflect on the people, places, and events that crafted a community. For a full list of events in 2022 Visit

FALL 2021 Nicknamed “the Breadbasket of the South” Shenandoah County has strong agricultural roots. Drive through the back roads along the rolling hills and pastoral farmland to see the many “Century Farms’’. These are farms that have been part of families for over a hundred years. Many have diversified and found ways to honor agricultural traditions while answering the needs of modern life. Restaurants throughout the region call on our local farms to supply produce, meats and beverages. Here, the phrase Farm-to-Table dining isn’t just a trendy buzzword, it’s a way of life! Six unique and charming small towns are strung like pearls along US Route 11. In each town you’ll find shops, galleries, restaurants, and coffee shops with unique styles. Within the towns and surrounding areas, you’ll find places to stay from rustic camping to upscale “glamping”, rental cottages and cabins to historic B&B’s. You could even rent a slope-side condo or book a lake side retreat at Bryce Resort.

It’s a Chase or Be Chased Event


ogs love to chase squirrels, rabbits, cars, cats, birds, even their own tails. But on Saturday, October 9 in Bryson City, NC, dogs will be chasing one thing — bacon! — at the second annual Great Bacon Chase Fun Run.

The .05K fun run/walk/stroll beside the Tuckasegee River is a little more than a block long, starting on Island Street at the Appalachian Rivers Aquarium and finishing near Mountain Layers Brewery. Participants can either be a slice of bacon (bacon costume included in race registration)

or they can chase the bacon with their dog (leashed). All adult participants receive a souvenir pint glass with 2 tickets for tastings at Mountain Layers. A donation will be made from proceeds to PAWS, a local no-kill animal shelter. Registration starts at 5:00 pm with the ‘chase’ beginning at 6:00 pm. Spectators are welcome and encouraged! For more information, along with Registration Form and Bacon Chase t-shirts pre-orders, visit

FALL 2021

Lexington & Rockbridge County’s

finds, like historic Wade’s Mill and Rockbridge Vineyard & Brewery, home to a Virginia Governor’s Cup-winning wine. Continue on to take in another mill, that of Cyrus McComick Farm. The watermill and buildings there date to the farm’s founding of 1822. Northern Rockbridge Circle back to Lexington to Antiquing is all the rage. Wander toast your travels at Devils Backthrough Duke’s Antiques before bone Outpost Tap Room & Kitchen. making your way to the Village of They, too, have a great view of the Fairfield for 3 Seasons Antiques & mountains from their deck and their Unique menu is super Treasures. tasty. Hull’s Nearby, The Drive-In is just a Quiltery has mile down the plethora road. A movie fabric, under the stars patterns, is the perfect and needful way to end things your Lexington for the and Rockbridge County adventure. talented quilt maker in your life. Wind your way into BrownsTo plan your trip or request burg for a stop at the Brownsburg an Inspiration Guide, visit Museum. The countryside is beautiful and the road leads on to more great



he air cools and the hues of foliage warm as summer shifts to fall in the Shenandoah Valley. Travel U.S. Route 11, the historic path winding between the rising Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains, to encounter tasty treats, inspiring views, and whimsical attractions.

Southern Rockbridge

Fall’s flavors are worth the wait, and we know just where to find them. Sink your teeth into an Asian pear at Virginia Gold Orchard.

Harvested by hand the moment they’re ready, these pears are among the best you’ll ever enjoy. Since we’re talking fruit, it’s apple season in Virginia and great apples lead to excellent hard cider. Walk amongst the apple trees – in a labyrinth, no less – at Halcyon Days Cider Co., then indulge in a flight to choose your favorite cider. Looking for great views and great beverages with room for the kids to play? Great Valley Farm Brewery & Winery boasts wide open spaces and award-winning wine and beer with an unbeatable view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Any visit to this part of Rockbridge must include a stop at Natural Bridge State Park to soak in the shadow of the amazing 215-foot natural limestone arch. The paved Cedar Creek Trail ushers you beneath the rock bridge to learn about Monacan Indian history as well as that of Salt Peter Cave. Trek all the way to the end of the out-and-back trail to find Lace Falls.

Craft an Adventure in Western North Carolina

Ask about our MINE TRIPS! Experience the wonder and excitement of prospecting for gemstones! Experienced gem cutters are on hand 13780 Highway 226 S Spruce Pine, NC Call (828) 765-6130

Custom Jewelry Made with your stones!



P.O. Box 1758 Asheville, NC 28802 Phone: (828) 691-5437

All articles and information supplied are printed accurately to the best knowledge of the management. The Blue Ridge Digest is not responsible for errors beyond its control. THANKS TO THE BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY ASSOCIATION FOR THE USE OF THEIR CENTER-SPREAD MAP

FALL 2021

Aim for the Stars this Fall in Burnsville, NC


Thomas Hardy Design: Imagewerks Productions Need good design? FALL

d travel publication in the

the most widely distribute



Blue Ridge & gReat Smoky mounta


Alexa and family photo by Mike Koenig



Welcome to the Mountains!

Thank you for making your vacation an All-American experience in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountain area. Your vacation dollars go further on U.S. soil and by spending time in the mountains, you not only benefit communities and businesses in your own back yard, but avoid flight delays & exchange rates. Now more than ever, Americans are looking for ways to stretch their dollars, spend time with family and friends, reconnect to the wonders of the natural world, and, if only for a moment, take a breath of fresh air.

Enjoy your stay!


Peer into distance galaxies and view close-ups of the moon and constellations at the Bare Dark Sky Observatory in the NC mountain town of Burnsville.

he observatory, located at Mayland Community College’s Earth to Sky Park, houses the largest public access telescope in North Carolina. Folks are invited out for weekend viewing nights, when the roof of the observatory rolls back to reveal a custom-built StarStructure Newtonian telescope. The observatory sits at 2,736 feet in elevation and offers a 360degree view. In 2014, the Mayland

Earth to Sky Park received a designation from the International Dark-Sky Association for its stewardship of the natural night sky. “Our location, roughly halfway between Asheville and Boone, is an ideal spot for stargazing,” says Christy Jones, director of the Burnsville-Yancey Chamber of Commerce. “We’re close enough to make it an easy trip, yet remote enough to have the dark skies needed for optimal viewing.”

In September there are six weekend viewing sessions, with Jupiter, Saturn, and the Milky Way making their 2021 early evening appearances. Another six sessions in October focus on the Milky Way, Saturn, Venus, Uranus, Neptune, galaxies, nebulae, star clusters and meteors. October Moon Madness is two nights – Oct. 15 and 16 – while November Moon Madness is slated for the nights of Nov. 12 and 13.

Tickets must be purchased in advance. To make a reservation, go to Burnsville visitor info is available at

FALL 2021

Plan Your Authentic Autumn Adventure in

Haywood County, NC Looking for more than just a great scenic view this fall? Look no further than Haywood County, NC.



ith the arrival of Labor Day signaling summer is quickly fading to fall, it’s time to start planning your autumn escape to Haywood County,

NC. If crisp, cool temperatures and a scenic “leaf-peeping” spot are what you crave, then there is no better place to be than the towns of Waynesville, Maggie

Valley, Canton, Clyde and Lake Junaluska. But the fun doesn’t stop there. The area boasts an abundance of fall time adventure that is sure to satisfy the entire family. You can enjoy Arts & Crafts Festivals, Car Shows, a Bluegrass Festival, one of the oldest Labor Day Celebrations in the Southeast and of course, the fall colors. So where are the best viewing spots? The 46 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway running through Haywood County is a good place to start. Within those 46 miles, you will find 74 pristine vistas and overlooks. Popular leaf-viewing spots in this area include Graveyard Fields, Devil’s Courthouse, Water

Rock Knob, and Richland Balsam, but almost any overlook will provide you with spectacular views. For motor-touring enthusiasts who prefer the challenge of a twisting mountain road, the NC Smokies Motor Touring Guide will lead the way with numerous rides throughout the county and region. For more information visit or request a Visitor Guide and a Motor Touring Guide by calling 1-800-334-9036. Now all you need is a place to stay! You will find a little something for everyone, including a wide range of accommodations from moderate convenience to luxurious refinement. Take your pick - from hotels and motels in the middle of the action to cozy inns and quiet B&Bs to luxury vacation rentals and cabins with panoramic views. To learn more about lodging options and other local adventures visit See you this fall in Haywood County!

OCTOBER 8-10, 2021 | ARRINGTON, VA Day passes, camping, & premium education packages available. Go to for more info & to buy tickets.

Photos © Camden Littleton

» 200+ Overland travel classes & activities

» Expert driving instruction for 4WD & ADV moto

» 300+ Exhibitors of adventure travel equipment

» Overland film festival & stories of world travels

» Ride & Drive experiences on off-road courses


Celebrate fall in

Pigeon Forge N

estled in the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains, Pigeon Forge offers families and friends an autumn retreat perfect for all ages. Whether it’s a quiet cabin stay in the mountains or enjoying the fun along the Pigeon Forge Parkway, including award-winning shows, more than 80 attractions, and delicious regionally-inspired restaurants, travelers can create their ideal fall getaway this year. Located only six miles from the entrance of Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Pigeon Forge provides easy access to one of the country’s free national parks with hundreds of trails and scenic drives to enjoy the Smokies’ brilliant fall foliage.

Here are a few more ways to celebrate the fall season during your trip to Pigeon Forge. With nearly 200 years of Pigeon Forge history, the Old Mill Historic District offers guests the chance to learn about the city’s heritage, enjoy classic Southern fare, as well as observe traditional Appalachian crafters at work. Visitors can even get a head start on holiday shopping with a bag of the Old Mill’s famous cornmeal or a handmade piece of pottery from Pigeon River Pottery. Dollywood ushers in autumn with its Harvest Festival beginning Sept. 24. The festival features the authentic craftsmanship of renowned artisans, creative seasonal food and

beverages, and Dollywood’s Great Pumpkin LumiNights. During the festival, larger-than-life pumpkin displays and extended nighttime hours help guests celebrate all that fall has to offer in a family-friendly environment. Dollywood’s Harvest Festival ends Oct. 31 Decked out for the season, The Island in Pigeon Forge is a festive stop for food, family fun, shopping and spotting fall foliage from 200 feet above the ground. Visitors can take in a 360-degree view of the colorful Smokies from atop the Great Smoky Mountain Observation Wheel in all-glass gondolas.

FALL 2021

For more information and to plan your trip to Pigeon Forge, please visit

Farm Stays of Patrick County


atrick County, VA is rooted in agricultural history which shows in the many farms that have opened their operations to share their southern hospitality with travelers. If you’re looking for a unique place to get away and be a fly on the wall to the busy animals and farmers around you, these farm stays are for you! Rest your head at the Old Oak Farm B&B, a beautiful 1920’s farmhouse. On their small farm are friendly, free range chickens, ducks, geese, goats,

turkeys and even a peacock as well as their friendly dogs. Experience a true free-range black angus cattle operation at Wolf Creek Farm B&B, a beautiful 100-acre farm. Guests at Wolf Creek Farm will be able to see cattle from Spring through Fall and haymaking approximately in May. The Meadows of Dan River Walk Cabins sit on a 135-acre working lavender farm named High Country Lavender. Without leaving the property guests can enjoy the 2.5-mile hiking trails, picnicking or

fishing beside the waterfalls, wildlife-watching and beautiful views from the deck of the cabins. The Cottage at Martin’s Blueberry Hill hosts over 300 blueberry bushes in their pick-your-own orchard. July - September the berries are ripe for picking with a backdrop of Bull Mountain! Just walk out the front door, grab a bucket, and pick blueberries to your heart’s content.

At The Nests at Chapman Knoll, they offer two country-chic, private guesthouses and provide a farm fresh breakfast to your door each morning to enjoy in the comfort of your guesthouse or balcony while you watch their beloved dairy cows roam the pastures.

FALL 2021


Pick Hendersonville

peer into four states — North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Georgia. The sunset view is one of the best in Western North Carolina. With more than 10,000 acres, DuPont State Recreational Forest the town experiences all four seasons. provides a seemingly endless This time of year nature reveals playground for hiking, biking, fishing its full color palette along scenic and horseback riding. The gems of backroads. Hendersonville is the forest are its numerous waterfalls. located 15 miles from the famed Holmes Educational State Forest has Blue Ridge Parkway, making it a a mission to teach visitors about the popular stopover for leaf peepers. trees, wildflowers and critters around Downtown Hendersonville’s them. Families enjoy an easy walk curvilinear Main Street encourages along the Talking Trees Trail where pedestrians. Meander along an eightdifferent species of trees explain block stretch of sidewalk dotted with their characteristics and uses. trees and flowering planters. Window Whether you’re looking for shop as you pass boutiques and gala convenient hotel, romantic leries. Enjoy sidewalk dining at one of bed-and-breakfast or family25 independently owned restaurants. Only 15 minutes from downtown, friendly property, Hendersonville has a variety of lodging Jump Off Rock provides panoramic options. For more info: views of the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky mountains. On a clear day, or (800) 828-4244.

for shopping, hiking and sightseeing


he Blue Ridge Mountain town of Hendersonville strikes an unusual balance. It’s big enough to offer year-round activities, yet small enough to feel warm, welcoming and personable. It’s mountainous enough

to provide sweeping views, yet it’s easily accessible via an interstate drive. Hendersonville’s elevation is high enough to allow for less-humid summers and several winter snowfalls, but moderate enough that


FALL 2021

A Beautiful Fall Destination S

75 Years of Big Walker Lookout

cenic backroads offer an escape from the hustle-bustle of the interstates and a glimpse at unique attractions along the way. Fall is a gorgeous time to explore the beauty of an area. Wytheville, Virginia offers that charming small-town destination you’ve been looking for as a location for your fall getaway. It’s one of the most beautiful times of the year. Local farms offer the beauty of harvest time as fields become blanketed with the orange of pumpkins. Festivals and events are frequent this time of year and focus on music and crafts. Fans of spooky activities will love the area with its seasonal haunted attractions, as well as a weekend devoted to zombies in Downtown Wytheville. Your “off the Parkway” adventure could include a wealth of outdoor to enjoy the authentic sounds a musical one at this mountain recreation followed by a night of of the region is the stage at Big top location with a variety of local entertainment enjoying the latest Walker Lookout. Every weekend is musicians, artisans and authors. musical on the stage of Wohlfahrt Interesting adventures are right around every curve and corner. Haus Dinner Theatre. “Country To find out the latest info, contact the Wytheville Convention & Roads” runs September 3-October Visitors Bureauat 1-877-347-8307, or 24 followed by “Christmas in and click on “Virtual Visitors Center.” the Mountains” from November Wytheville, Virginia…There’s Only One. 11-December 31. A beautiful setting

Salem Breeze

RV Park

Named for pioneer explorer Dr. Thomas Walker, Big Walker Mountain is a beautiful portion of the mountain ranges that surround Wytheville, Virginia. Celebrating 75 years of business, Big Walker Lookout & BW Country Store sits atop the mountain at an elevation of over 3,400 feet. “Only the Birds See More” after a climb up the 100-foot lookout tower that offers panoramic views of multiple states. The BW Country Store features handmade artisan wares from Southwest Virginia, delicious Virginia-made ice cream, and a variety of unique gift items. Weekends, May through October, the attraction is host to local talented musicians that perform mountain top music for visitors to enjoy! Local authors are on hand to sign their latest books and you might see a local artist demonstrating their craft. Big Walker Lookout is the oldest private attraction and has been owned and operated by the Kime family for over 75 years. Learn more about the business at

FAMILY CAMPING AT ITS BEST! Visit the area attractions

• Old Salem • Bob Timberlake Gallery • Childress Vineyards • RCR Racing Museum

Just South of Winston Salem, NC Exit 100 Hickory Tree Rd off I-285

Great Rally location with lots of local restaurants & attractions.

You’ll want to return often!



Stroll the streets of Dillsboro in the holiday spirit for the annual Lights and Luminaries Festival The Festival of Lights and Luminaries returns the first and second Fridays and Saturdays of December, which are Dec. 3 & 4 and 10 & 11 from 5-9 p.m.


here will be over 2,500 white lights adorning the historic buildings, and the flickering flames of luminaries softening the shadows of the streets. Excitement will abound as the merchants of Dillsboro open their doors to visitors. Each night shops will stay open late providing free refreshments like hot chocolate and cider. Visitors will enjoy


Photo by Kelly Donaldson/ Jackson County Chamber of Commerce

musicians and singers performing holiday carols in individual shops. Enjoy old-fashioned horse and buggy rides (weather permitting). Children can share their wishes with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Santa’s Workshop or snap a picture with Rudolph and Santa’s elves, who are walking throughout the town. With retail shops offering

Even the smallest of us can be part of something very big.

a variety of arts and crafts, antiques, jewelry and specialty Christmas items, the festival provides a unique holiday shopping experience. Friday, Dec. 6, is Western Carolina University and Southwestern Community College Night. Students and faculty are invited to enjoy special discounts (with ID) Free parking and shuttle transportation for the event will be available at Monteith Park each night of the festival. While at Monteith Park, take time to tour the Appalachian Women’s Museum


before or after your shuttle ride. All Dillsboro restaurants will be open, so come for an early family meal. Jarrett Memorial Church will be open to the public and will serve as a drop off point for canned items that will be given to local charitable organizations. Dillsboro is located in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina at the intersection of US Hwys. 19/74 and 441. For more information, visit

April 20 • Sweet Treats of the Carolinas Festival - Marion

27 • Old Fort Pioneer Day - Old Fort

May 25 • Memorial Day Car Show - Marion •

June 1 • Official NC Gold Festival - Old Fort

The grown-up sense of discovery at every turn around the mountain will only be surpassed by the childlike wonder our natural playground evokes. w w w. g ra n d f a t h e r. c o m

• Liver Mush Festival - Marion

• Pisgah Enduro Race - Old Fort

GRANDFATHER M8 8O8 -U2 3N3 -T6 1A1 1I N

Details and other events are online.® WONDERS NEVER CEASE


FALL 2021

“ColorFest,” Dillsboro’s Fine Arts & Crafts Fair Celebrates Dillsboro’s 135th Year as a Tourist Town fine craft and one best of show winner sponsored by the Dillsboro Merchants Association! A visit to this small town is like stepping back in time. Its five square blocks of century-old stores, restaurants, galleries and inns are a nostalgic reminder ColorFest,” the thirteenth annual of small town America the way our Dillsboro’s Fine Arts & Crafts Fair, grandparents knew it. Dillsboro will hit the streets on October has an interesting array of mom2, 2021 from 10am until 4pm in and-pop businesses specializing the historic town of Dillsboro, NC. in delightful merchandise. Located just a few miles off the Blue Ridge Parkway and the Great Smoky Fine Arts & Crafts: Mountains National Park, the walkDavid Ammons, renown about mountain town of Dillsboro chair caner, will demonstrate the has been a popular tourist location historic fine art of Herringbone since 1886 when visitors arrived by chair caning. Jean Littlejohn will train and spent several weeks. 135 share her antique jewelry made years later, the railroad tracks on from old china and silver; Mary Railroad Street are still in use by the Smith will again offer her handmade Great Smoky Mountain Railroad, and hats, knitted and felted just in time to the enjoyment of today’s tourists. for winter; Jason Rizzo will have The town hosts daylong festivals to photography from the area, framed showcase the abundance of local and ready for your walls; Lisa Kolk’s handcrafts and musical talents. silk scarves would complete any The image of the historic town of outfit; James Mills will be there Dillsboro has evolved into the place with his handmade fishing fly rods to come for appreciation of the arts. (demonstrations available); with an Featured in this year’s festival array of jewelry and soap makers. are some of the best fine artists and fine crafters in Western North Entertainment: Carolina. Most of the artisans will 11am—The J. Creek Clogbe demonstrating their work and gers—a high-energy dance team striving for the prizes awarded for based out of Haywood County 1st and 2nd place in fine art and NC, will dance on the street.

12 pm—Anna Victoria—Anna Victoria is a country singer and songwriter from Sylva. She plays a range of music from Dolly Parton and Loretta Lynn to Miranda Lambert and Chris Stapleton. 1 pm—Twelfth Fret—Twelfth Fret performs original as well as pop and classic rock covers of music by John Prine, America, The Beatles, David Bowie, The Eagles, Elton John, Tom Petty and more. 2 pm—Anna Victoria—Once again Anna Victoria will take the stage.

Within the vivid colors of autumn, you are invited to come and enjoy Dillsboro on Saturday, October 2, 2021, from 10am until 4pm at ColorFest! Come, stroll through the colorful fine arts and crafts, dance and sing to the music, feel the breeze of mountains and taste the foods of this welcoming town! For more information: 828-506-8331.

Hemlock Inn A Blowing Rock Tradition

Walk to downtown shopping and dining Easy driving to many area attractions 18 uniquely designed rooms Open Year Round

828-295-7987 • • 134 Morris Street

FALL 2021

Holiday Happenings in Wilkes County



he holiday season kicks off in Wilkes County the weekend of December 4, with a small-town parade full of wonderfully decorated floats, all four county marching

bands, and local businesses, scout troops, homecoming queens, dance troops and classic cars putting on their best show for the crowds lining the streets. This year’s

theme, “A Patriotic Christmas,” is sure to enthrall spectators with bright colors and great music celebrating our country and the Christmas season. The parade starts in North Wilkesboro and makes its way over to downtown Wilkesboro, where it passes by the Wilkes Heritage Museum square, the site of the Christmas in the Commons celebration immediately following the parade. Stick around for food trucks, activities for kids, visits with Santa, and the official lighting of the Heritage Square Christmas Tree.

Plan Your


43rd Brushy Mountain Apple Festival October 2, 2021, 8 a.m.-5 p.m. Downtown North Wilkesboro Pre-Festival Apple Jam featuring Sassafrass October 1, 2021, 6 p.m. Wilkes County Christmas Parade December 4, 2021, 3-5 p.m. Christmas in the Commons December 4, 4:30-8:30 Carolina West Wireless Community Commons and Wilkes Heritage Museum Square

To the east and west are bustling cities, but in between is pure bliss. Beauty that will take your breath away and stories of bravery that will leave you speechless.

Peaks of Otter

———— Where Ordinary Ends... ————

Bedford Begins.

National D-Day Memorial

877-447-3257 | #DestinationBedfordVA


Photos by Camden Littleton

The World’s Premier Overland And Adventure Travel Event Returns Nelson County, Virginia • October 8-10


verlanding is a way to describe exploring by your own self-contained means, usually by 4-wheel drive vehicle or adventure motorcycle. For overlanders, the journey is as important as the destination. It’s the journey

— and the activities that overlanders do when they get to their destination: hiking, nature watching, kayaking, mountain biking, etc. — that make it an adventure. Overland Expo East is held October 8-10, 2021 at Oak Ridge

Estates in Nelson County, Virginia. Overland Expo is the premier overlanding and adventure travel event series in the world. The weekend event is designed to bring passionate adventurers together to get trained, get outfitted and

Downtown Lexington


ost folks immediately fall in love with the architecture and charm of Lexington

before they ever get out of the car. Sharp church steeples, brick walks, and intricate window displays are a feast for the eyes. Park the car and soak it all in on foot or aboard a narrated, horse-drawn carriage ride with Lexington Carriage Company. Score a handmade donut or breakfast sandwich from Pure Eats and a specialty coffee from Lexington Coffee Shop to start a day of great shopping. There are several galleries filled with the works of local artisans, plus clothing boutiques, niche retailers, and gift shops aplenty. Fresh foods expertly prepared

and beautifully presented are the norm in downtown Lexington. Choose from mainstays like Southern Inn or Bistro on Main. For lighter fare, try The Red Hen, Juniper Lounge, or Tonic. Cool and quirky, the wafflewich is a sandwich you won’t soon forget, and it’s available at Brew Ridge Taps. Pizza slingin’ has gone up a notch or two with wood-fired pies crafted and served alongside great beer at Salerno Wood Fired Pizza & Taphouse and Heliotrope Brewery. Outdoor dining in downtown is the way to go and both offer space for just that.

To plan your trip:

get inspired to explore the world. Overland Expo brings together the 200 outdoor lifestyle, camping, and overland gear and equipment vendors. The event also hosts hundreds of session hours of classes, demonstrations, films and presentations all curated in an effort to teach and train attendees in outdoor and overland lifestyle and techniques and inspire them to get going on their next journey. Classes range from hands-on driving/riding skills and navigation to campfire cooking skills, nature photography, overlanding with kids, overlanding essentials classes and inspiring stories of world travels from travelers and adventurers from all over the world. Attendees can stop by for the day or the entire weekend with a daypass or a three-day pass. Camping packages are also available.

For more information or to purchase tickets, visit

FALL 2021


Creativity Calls in the Blue Ridge Mountains cians and craft artisans have found inspiration in the natural beauty of the area. This autumn, meet the artists who live here and experience their creativity firsthand on the new Blue Ridge Craft Trails and the Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina.

Explore the New Blue Ridge Craft Trails

Johnson C. Campbell Folk School/Weaving


reasures await on your exploration of the foothills and mountains of Western North Carolina. It’s here where generations of musi-

For centuries, this region has been known as an epicenter for handmade craft, reaching back to the living arts of the Cherokee. Now, it’s easy to craft your adventure with ready-made itineraries or a Plan Your Trip tool at BlueRidgeCraftTrails. com. Discover more than 100 artist studios, galleries and hands-on craft experiences on this drivable trail

throughout Western North Carolina. In addition to artists, galleries and arts events, travelers will get tips on rounding out their journey with nearby craft foods, breweries, music, outdoor activities, and scenic views.

Discover the Melodies of Western North Carolina

Western North Carolina’s distinct natural and cultural treasures have cultivated a rich musical heritage, which is now showcased through the Blue Ridge Music Trails. Internationally renowned music traditions like old-time string bands, ballad singing, and bluegrass are highlighted in the Blue Ridge Music Trails that expand across 29 counties. Come and explore for a few hours or a few days

Meghan Bernard, potter, Hendersonville, NC

to immerse yourself in authentic mountain melodies and traditions. Visit The Blue Ridge Music Trails and the Blue Ridge Craft Trails are initiatives of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area. This nonprofit works to preserve and protect the rich cultural and natural heritage of Western North Carolina. Learn more at

Find Your Trail in NC Wine Country


FALL 2021

Make the Blue Ridge Parkway Detour around Roanoke an Excursion

112.2 (Route 24 near Vinton, VA) to Milepost 136 (Route 221 on Bent Mountain, VA) for thru-travelers. The region’s popular outdoor destination, Explore Park (milepost 115), offering cabins, yurts and campsites, multi-use he National Park Service will trails, ziplining, and more is still be completing repairs on the accessible along the Parkway Roanoke River Bridge at MileNorth from US220 at Milepost post 114 and also repairing a road 121 or by the Alternate Entrance hazard at Milepost 127.9 that was at 3900 Rutrough Road. caused by heavy rains and landThere are many charming slides. As a result, the Blue Ridge small towns to explore off of the Parkway will be closed from Milepost Blue Ridge Parkway while these

A section of the Blue Ridge Parkway will be closed around the Roanoke area in Virginia’s Blue Ridge through spring 2022.


popular sections are closed: In the Town of Vinton, enjoy the outdoors with a relaxing walk along the Wolf Creek Greenway, get on the water at the Tinker Creek Canoe Launch, snap a picture in front of the Vinton War Memorial LOVE sign and refuel at a fun local spot like farmto-table burgers at FarmBurguesa, craft beer at Twin Creeks Brewing Company, and classic comfort food at Dogwood Restaurant. Downtown Roanoke, the largest metropolitan area in Virginia’s Blue Ridge offers an exciting assort-

For step by step directions:

ment of local shops, restaurants and attractions like the Historic City Market, Center in the Square’s seven-story museum and cultural hub, Taubman Museum of Art, Virginia Museum of Transportation and Mast General Store. The nearby progressive Neighborhood of Wasena is full of flavor. Savor a craft coffee from Roasters Next Door Coffee, hit the Roanoke River Greenway then relax over sensational flavors at Bloom Restaurant & Wine Bar. Find sweet treats sprinkled along Roanoke’s Brambleton Avenue at Our Daily Bread, Deb’s Frozen Lemonade and Brambleton Deli. Bent Mountain has excellent hiking at Bottom Creek Gorge (home to the 2nd highest waterfall in VA) and locally-grown Virginia wine at AmRhein’s Wine Cellars. Enjoy a metro mountain adventure to Virginia’s Blue Ridge! Head to parkwaydetour for step by step detour directions to each of these charming small towns. **Explore Park is also accessible via Mill Mountain Spur Road.

FALL 2021


Woolly Worm

Festival F

or more than 40 years, the town of Banner Elk, NC, has invited both old and new friends to the annual Woolly Worm Festival. This world-renowned, family-friendly event is co-hosted by the Avery County Chamber of Commerce and the Kiwanis Club of Banner Elk, and in recent years has drawn crowds of nearly 20,000 folks! This year, the 44th annual Woolly Worm Festival will take place on Saturday,

October 16 and Sunday, October 17. During the festival, woolly worms are raced in a series of heats, with the champion given the honor of delivering the winter forecast. The woolly worm has long been famous in the High Country, primarily because of its uncanny ability to predict the weather—or so the legend goes… Old-timers say that the number of black and orange colored bands,

Blue Ridge Parkway Road Trip Blue Ridge Parkway Road Trip Guide has flexible itineraries and practical tips you’re ready to fill up and hit the road.

From the sprawling green countryside of Shenandoah to the mists rising over the Great Smoky Mountains, endless adventure and beauty await along America’s most scenic highway. Inside Moon Blue Ridge Parkway Road Trip you’ll find: Multiple Itineraries: Choose from flexible getaways along the Blue Ridge Parkway, including the ultimate two-week route, a four-day loop from D.C., and more Eat, sleep, stop and explore: With lists of the best hikes, views, restaurants, and more, you can listen to live bluegrass, find the best barbecue around, or sip local moonshine. Explore a labyrinthine cave system, hike a leg of the famous Appalachian Trail, and spot black bears and elk in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Maps and driving tools: Easy-to-use maps keep you oriented on and off the highway, along with site-to-site mileage, driving times, detailed directions, and full-color photos throughout Planning your trip: Know when and where to get gas, how to avoid traffic, tips for driving in different road and weather conditions, and suggestions for LBGTQ+ travelers, seniors, and road trippers with children.

Get your copy today at:

or segments, on a worm in early fall can determine the severity of the coming winter. That’s good information when you’re preparing for 13 weeks of frigid temps, ice, and snow here in the mountains. What else can your family do at this famous fall festival? There’s something for everyone! The Woolly Worm Festival features crafts, food vendors, children’s

activities, and live entertainment. It’s a great place to get a head start on your Christmas shopping at the more than 140 vendor booths! All festival proceeds are given back to the community to enhance schools, fund children’s programs, and to promote businesses and tourism in Avery County. Learn more at

Our guests are number ONE! from check-in to check-out. Our staff is always ready to be at your service in friendly mountain style. Conference Room Guest Laundry You’ll really enjoy the Restaurant on Site 24-Hour Staff spacious rooms. Free Wireless Internet Open all year long

Toll Free Reservations: 1-888-372-2501 341 N. Main St. Sparta, NC

The wondrous profusion of mountain flowers in spring and early summer, the high altitude coolness of the forest-clad mountains in summer, and the glorious coloring of these mountains in autumn provide an everchanging appeal.

LEGEND Blue Ridge Parkway Facilities

The Blue Ridge Parkway is open 365 days a year, weather permitting. Sometimes road repair is undertaken in the winter months and detours are posted. The Parkway is not plowed or salted in the winter, so after snow or ice events, portions may be closed until the weather warms and makes the roadway safe for travel again.

01 Designates Milepost

New Rive National

N Bluefield Pennington Gap

To Lexington Morristown







Murphy 129 Blue Ridge




19 129


Chatuge Lake


Knob Maggie



Bryson City


Franklin 64

Hiwassee 76

Balsam Sylva






Sugar Mountain

Mars Hill


Little Switzerland Weaverville

Marshall 63


Waynesville Graveyard Fields




Mount Pisgah


Morganton 321 Valdese


Black Mtn. 221

Saluda 9


To Greenville






Gastonia 85

WinstonSalem Clemmons 421

Statesville 70


To Charlotte








Hillsville Laure 58 Fork Fancy Gap

North Wilkesboro 16 Union Grove






Chimney Lake Lure Rock 74A


To Atlanta

Crabtree Falls


Galax 180 Laurel Springs 221 Sparta 220 St y a West Cumberland Knob w ge Park d Jefferson i R Mount Airy lue 21 Boone B 77 18 Doughton Park Pilot 270 E.B. Jeffress Park 74 Mou

Moses H. Cone Mem. Park Julian Price Mem. Park Linville Falls 18




Blowing Rock 421

Spruce Pine

Craggy Gardens Marion

Parkway Visitor Visitor Center Center

Hendersonville Brevard Highlands Sapphire Lake Toxaway







Hot Springs







Great Smoky Mountains National ParkMile Waterrock

165 Fontana Village

Cherohala Skyway

Cosby Gatlinburg

Pigeon Forge




Maryville 411

To Chattanooga 411





Mouth of Wilson Independence


421 Mountain



Damascus City

Johnson City Jonesborough











20 km



To Nashville


20 mi




0 0




Mooresville 77








To Gettysburg, PA


Martinsburg Charles Town Harpers Ferry 340 Leesburg





Front Royal

New Market






To Washington, DC





e lin nd Sky na e Sh





Warrenton “America’s Favorite 29 Drive” Culpeper at your fingertips




Dr ive Na tio na l






29 33




er Gorge River


Buchanan 311

Salem Blacksburg Roanoke








Eden 220

Reidsville 29

High Point 85

40 85 421



Snow Camp

Roxboro 49


To Durham















To Richmond

Cell service/internet conductivity is not 100% in or even near the mountains in many places.




This is a very comprehensive app with lots of information, and best downloaded on DOWNLOAD a wireless connection.















Burnt Chimney 43












Rocky Mount

Rocky Knob

t untain


Roanoke Mountain

Meadows 0 of Dan tuart


Otter Creek



Peaks of Otter


Smart View

el k




Christiansburg Floyd


Buena Vista





Natural Bridge


Mile 0

Humpback Rocks

Find attractions, history, nearby communities, lodging, hiking trails and more with or without connectivity.

Blue Ridge Parkway


Traveling the Blue Ridge Parkway or planning to? Here are some must visit places on the Parkway in north to south order: Humpback Rocks...................................................................Mileposts 5-9.3 Peaks of Otter ......................................................................Mileposts 84-87 Mabry Mill.............................................................................. Milepost 176.1 Doughton Park............................................................. Mileposts 238.5-248 Northwest Trading Post .................................................... Milepost 258.6 Linn Cove Viaduct................................................................. Milepost 304.4 Linville Falls...............................................................................Milepost 316 Folk Art Center...........................................................................Milepost 382 Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center....................................Milepost 384 Mt Pisgah................................................................................ Milepost 408.6 Waterrock Knob ................................................................... Milepost 451.2

FYI: Both Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge prominently promote/talk about ‘Parkway’ as the Main Street thru their towns.


FALL 2021

5 Fall Favorites in Virginia’s Blue Ridge


his fall, find the perfect combination of outdoor adventure and scenic views paired with rich local flavors and live entertainment, right off the Parkway in Virginia’s Blue Ridge. Take milepost 120 towards Roanoke to stretch your legs, refuel and enjoy fall in the mountains. Mountain bike the crisp trails of Mill Mountain Park to Roanoke’s highest point (1703 ft.) then stand beneath the Roanoke Star, the world’s largest man-made illuminated star, for a breathtaking view as the leaves change into their fall wardrobes.

Find more stunning foliage and soak in Blue Ridge Mountain vistas at the scenic wineries of Botetourt County. Virginia Mountain Vineyards, Blue Ridge Vineyard, and Stoney Brook Vineyards all pair exceptional views and award-winning wines. Refuel with farm-to-table burgers at Vinton’s FarmBurguesa, where the menu boasts locally-sourced ingredients and Colombian-inspired twists. Snap a selfie at the Vinton War Memorial LOVEworks art before getting back on the road! Get started on holiday shopping in Downtown Salem. Find seasonal vegetables, sweet treats and beautiful work of talented artists and craftspeople at the Salem

Farmers Market while weaving in and out of local antique shops and boutiques that line Main Street. Enjoy live entertainment with a theatre performance at Mill Mountain Theatre located inside Downtown Roanoke’s seven-story Center in the Square or catch a concert at the Harvester Performance Center in downtown Rocky Mount, Virginia.

With unlimited things to do, be sure not to miss out on these five favorites while visiting Virginia’s Blue Ridge

Vinton War Memorial LOVEworks: Jenny Marie Photography

Plan a complete metro mountain getaway to Virginia’s Blue Ridge this fall. Find more information on these attractions and others at

Visit VBR Roanoke Star fall colors – Creative Dog Media

FALL 2021




Shenandoah National Park lies astride a beautiful section of the Blue Ridge Mountains, which form the eastern rampart of the Appalachian Mountains between Pennsylvania and Georgia. The Shenandoah River flows through the valley to the west, with Massanutten Mountain, 40 miles long, standing between the river’s north and south forks. The rolling Piedmont country lies to the east of the Park. Skyline Drive, a 105-mile road that winds along the crest of the mountains through the length of the Park, provides vistas of the spectacular landscape to east and west. Many animals, including deer, black bears, and wild turkeys, flourish among the rich growth of an oak-hickory forest. In season, bushes and wildflowers bloom along the Drive and trails and fill the open spaces. Apple trees, stone foundations, and cemeteries are reminders of the families who once called this place home. Shenandoah National Park has many stories waiting to be told, and a world of beauty that can renew and bring peace to the spirit.

ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS Visitors can enjoy the panoramic views from overlooks, hike to peaks and waterfalls, fish or just plain relax in the peaceful surroundings. Check their website at for a current list of programs as programming starts returning this summer. Continuing a tradition set by George Freeman Pollock, who found a resort at Skyland long before

Facilities and Services Includes visitor centers, bookstores, campgrounds, showers and laundries, picnic areas, gift shops, lodges, cabins, restaurants, gas station, ATMs, waysides, campstores, a stable, & restrooms.

• Most facilities and services are available April through November • Plan to obtain all food, gas, and lodging outside of the Park in December, January, February, and March. Check the Park’s website or call

Shenandoah National Park was established, Skyland and Big Meadows Lodge offer a variety of activities for visitors in spring, summer, and fall. From guided horseback rides from the Skyland stables, to night skies presentations and star gazing in the big meadows, there are great ways to have fun and learn more about the park and it’s wonderful assets. For a calendar of events, visit



(540) 999-3500 for current information.

TAKE FALL RELAXATION HIGHER The perfect time to experience Shenandoah National Park is when it’s tinged in shades of red and gold. Here in the Blue Ridge Mountains, fall shines. And you can stay right inside the park at Skyland, Big Meadows Lodge or the Lewis Mountain Cabins. Fall is a season to unwind, and there’s no better place to do that than high up in Shenandoah.

Plan your fall moment now at

Hospitality managed by Delaware North


FALL 2021

The Blue Ridge Digest can be found at these regional visitor’s centers! GEORGIA

Bryson City Chamber of Commerce 210 Main Street • Bryson City, NC 28713 (828) 488-3681 •

Jackson County Chamber of Commerce 773 W. Main Street • Sylva, NC 28779 (800) 962-1911 •

Burke County Travel & Tourism 110 E. Meeting Street Morganton, NC 28655 (828) 433-6793

Jonesville Welcome Center 1503 NC Hwy 67W Jonesville, NC 28642 • (336) 526-1111

Fannin County Chamber of Commerce 152 Orvin Lance Dr • Blue Ridge, GA 30513 (706) 632-5680

Caldwell County Visitor Center 1909 Hickory Blvd. SE Lenoir, NC 28645 (828) 726-0616

Madison County Visitor Center 56 S. Main Street • Mars Hill, NC 28754 (828) 680-9031

Rabun County Welcome Center 232 Hwy 441 North, POB 750 Clayton, Georgia 30525; (706) 782-4812

Cashiers Area Chamber of Commerce 202 U.S. 64, POB 238 BRD Cashiers, NC 28717 (828) 743-5191 •

Maggie Valley Chamber of Commerce 2791 Soco Road, POB 279 Maggie Valley, NC 28751 (800) MAGGIE-1 •

Towns County Visitor Center 1411 Jack Dayton Circle Young Harris, GA 30582 (706) 896-4966 •

Catawba County Visitor Center 1055 Southgate Parkway SW Hickory, NC 28602 (828) 328-6111

McDowell County Visitor Center 1170 W. Tate St. • Marion, NC 28752 (828) 652-4240 •

Blairsville/Union County Chamber 129 Union County Rec Rd. • Blairsville, GA 30512 (706) 745-5789

NORTH CAROLINA Alleghany Co. Chamber of Commerce 58 S. Main, POB 1237 BRD Sparta, NC 28675; (800) 372-5473 Andrews Rest Stop 50 Cover St / US 19 • Andrews, NC 28902 Ashe County Chamber & Visitor Center 1 N. Jefferson Ave, P.O. Box 31 West Jefferson, NC 28694 (336) 846-9550 • Avery County Chamber of Commerce 4501 Tynecastle Hwy • Unit 2 Banner Elk, NC 28604 (800) 972-2183 • Banner Elk Visitor Center 100 Main Street West Banner Elk, NC 28604 (828) 898-8395 • Beech Mountain Chamber of Commerce 403A Beech Mountain Parkway Beech Mtn, NC 28604 (800) 468-5506 • Black Mountain Chamber of Commerce 201 E. State St. • Black Mountain, NC 28711 (828) 669-2300 Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce 132 Park Ave • Blowing Rock NC 28605 (800) 295-7851 Blue Ridge Parkway Visitor Center 195 Hemphill Knob Rd • Asheville, NC 28803 828-298-5330 Boone Area Chamber of Commerce 870 W King St. Suite A • Boone, NC 28607 (828) 264-2225 •

Cherokee County Visitor Center 20 Tennessee Street, Murphy, NC 28906 828-557-2583 Cherokee County Welcome Center 805 W. US 64 Murphy, NC 28906; (828) 837-2242 Cherokee Welcome Center P.O. Box 460 • 498 Tsalis Rd. Cherokee, NC 28719 (800) 438-1601 • Clay County Chamber of Commerce 96 Sanderson St • Hayesville, NC 28904; (828) 389-3704 Franklin Area Chamber of Commerce 98 Hyatt Rd. Franklin • NC 28734 (888) 439-park • Gaston County Visitor Center 620 N. Main Street • Belmont, NC 28012 704-825-4044. Greensboro Visitor Center 2411 West Gate City Blvd Greensboro, NC 27403 (800) 344-2282 Haywood Chamber of Commerce 28 Walnut St. • Waynesville, NC 28786 (828) 456-3021 Hendersonville Visitor Center 201 S. Main St • Hendersonville, NC 28792 (800) 828-4244 Hickory Metro CVB 1960 13th Ave Dr. SE • Hickory, NC 28602 (828) 322-1335 • Highlands Chamber of Commerce 108 Main St., P. O. Box 404 Highlands, NC 28741 (828) 526-2112

Mitchell Co. Chamber of Commerce 79 Parkway Rd • Spruce Pine, NC 28777 828-765-2761 Mount Airy Visitor Center 200 N. Main St. • Mt. Airy, NC 27030 (800) 948-0949 • Mount Mitchell State Park 2388 State Hwy. 128 • Burnsville, NC 28714 (828) 675-4611 NW NC Visitor Center 2121 East US Hwy 421 North WIlkesboro, NC 28659 (336) 667-1259 NC High Country Host Visitor Center 6370 US HWY 321 South, Blowing Rock, NC 28605 (800) 438-7500 • Old Fort Visitor Center 91 S. Catawba Ave • Old Fort, NC 28762 (888) 233-6111 • Piedmont Triad Visitor Center 700 NC Hwy 700 • Pelham, NC 27311 (800) 388-9830

Wilkes County Chamber of Commerce 717 Main St., PO Box 727 BRD N. Wilkesboro, NC 28659 (336) 838-8662 • Winston-Salem Visitor Center 200 Brookstown Ave, Winston-Salem, NC 27101 336-728-4205 • Yancey County Chamber of Commerce 106 W. Main St. • Burnsville, NC 28714 (800) 948-1632 • Yadkin Valley Heritage & Trails Visitor Center – 257 Standard St, Elkin, NC 28621 (336) 526-1111 –

TENNESSEE Clairborne Co. Chamber of Commerce 1732 Main St., Suite 1 • Tazewell, TN 37879 (423) 626-4149 • Elizabethton Visitor Center 615 East Elk Ave., Elizabethton, TN 37643 (423) 547-3850 • Greene Co. Partnership/COB 115 Academy St. • Greeneville, TN 37743 (423) 638-4111 Historic Jonesborough 117 Boone St. Jonesborough •TN 37659 (423) 423-753-1010 • Toll Free: 866-401-4223 Johnson City Visitor Center 603 E. Main St. Johnson City • TN 37605; (423) 926-2141 • Johnson County Welcome Center 716 S. Shady St. (Hwy. 421S) Mountain City, TN 37683 (423) 727-5800 • Loudon County Visitor Bureau 1075 US Hwy 321 • Lenoir City, TN 37771 (865) 968-3662 •

Polk County Visitor Center 20 E. Mills St. • Columbus, NC 28722 (800) 440-7848

Pigeon Forge Visitor Center 1950 N. Parkway, POB 1390 BRD Pigeon Forge, TN 37868 (800) 251-9100 •

Smoky Mountain Host of NC, Inc 4437 Georgia Rd. • Franklin, NC 28734 (800) 432-4678 •

Townsend Visitor Center 7609 E. Lamar Alexander Parkway, Townsend, TN 37882.

Spruce Pine Visitor Center 165 Locust St. • Spruce Pine, NC 28777 (828) 765-7008 Statesville Convention & Visitors Bureau 118 W Broad St • Statesville, NC 28687 (704) 878-3480 or (877) 531-1819 Waynesville/Haywood County Visitor Center 1110 Soco Rd • Maggie Valley, NC 28751 (800) 334-9036

800-525-6834 • Unicoi Visitor Center 106 Unicoi Village Place PO Box 39 Erwin, TN 37692 • 423-735-0426

VIRGINIA 1908 Courthouse Visitor Center 107 E Main St. • Independence VA 24348 (276) 773-2471

FALL 2021


The Blue Ridge Digest can be found at these regional visitor’s centers! Abingdon Visitor Center 300 Green Spring Rd. • Abingdon, VA 24210 (800) 435-3440 • Afton Visitor Center 130 Afton Circle • Afton, VA 22920 (540) 943-5187 • Albemarle Tourism & Adventure Center 5791 Three Notched Rd • Crozet, VA 22932 (434) 906-2713 Appomattox Visitor Center 214 Main Street. PO Box 246 Appomattox, VA 24522 (434) 352-8999 • Bedford Visitor Center 816 Burks Hill Rd • Bedford, VA 24523; (877)-HiPeaks • Blue Ridge Visitor Center 2577 JEB Stuart Highway Meadows of Dan, VA 24120 • 276-694-6012 Buena Vista Visitor Center 595 E. 19th St. • Buena Vista, VA 24417 (540) 261-2880 •

Franklin County Visitor Center 1255 Franklin St, suite 112, Rocky Mount, VA 24151. (540) 483-3030 • Front Royal Visitor Center 414 E. Main St. • Front Royal, VA 22630 (800) 338-3576 •

Patrick County Chamber of Commerce 334 Patrick Avenue • PO Box 577 Stuart, VA 24171 (276) 694-6012 •

City of Galax Tourism Department 110 East Grayson St. • Galax, VA 24333 276-238-8130

Patrick County Visitor Center 126 N. Main St Stuart, VA 24171

Greene County Economic Development & Tourism 9157 Seminole Trail, Suite 2 Ruckersville, VA 22968 434-985-6663

Pulaski County Visitor Center 4440 Cleburne Blvd • Dublin, VA 24084 540-674-4161 •

Hardesty-Higgins House Visitor Center 212 S. Main St • Harrisonburg, VA 22801 (540) 432-8935 Lexington Visitor Center 106 E. Washington St. • Lexington, VA 24450 (540) 463-3777 • Loudoun Visitor Center 112G South St. SE • Leesburg, VA 20175 (703) 771-3237 •

Carroll County Visitor Center 231 Farmers Market Rd, Hillsville • VA 24343 (888) 785-2782 • (276) 730-3100 Luray/Page County Chamber 18 Campbell St. • Luray, VA 22835 (540) 743-3915 • Charlottesville Visitor Center 610 East Main St • Charlottesville, VA 22902 Lynchburg Regional Information Center 901 Court St. • Lynchburg, Virginia 24504 (434) 293-6789 • (434) 970-3641 (434) 485-7290 • Danville Visitor Center 645 River Park Dr • Danville, VA 24540 (434) 793-4636 •

Madison County Visitor Center 110A N. Main St. • Madison, VA 22727 (540) 948-4455 •

Discovery Center at Mill Mountain Roanoke’s Mill Mountain 2000 J P Fishburn Parkway Roanoke, VA 24013 • (540) 853-1236

Martinsville-Henry County Visitor Center 191 Fayette St. • Martinsville, VA 24112 (888) 722-3498 •

Floyd Visitors Center 109 E. Main St. • Floyd, VA 24091 540-745-4407

Orange Co. Visitor’s Center 122 East Main St. • Orange, VA 22960 (877) 222-8072 •

Nelson County Visitor Center 8519 Thomas Nelson Hwy., Lovingston, VA 22949 (800) 282-8223 •

Radford Visitor Center 710A Main St. • Radford, VA 24141 (866) 605-6442 • Roanoke Visitor Information Center 101 Shenandoah Ave., NE Roanoke VA 24016 (800) 635-5535 • Rockfish Gap-Waynesboro Visitor Center 130 Afton Circle • Afton, VA 22920 (540) 943-5187 • Salem Visitor Center 1001 Boulevard @ Civic Center Salem, VA 24153; (888) 827-2536 Shenandoah County Tourism 600 N. Main St, Ste 101 Woodstock, VA 22664 888-367-3965 • Gateway to Shenandoah Visitor Center at Hupp’s Hill Civil War Park and Museum 33229 Old Valley Pike • Strasburg, VA 22657 540-465-9197 • Smith Mountain Lake Visitor Center 16430 Booker T. Washington Hwy. #2 Moneta. VA 24121 540-721-1203

Attractions where you can pick up an issue of The Blue Ridge Digest on your next trip in the mountains in addition to most all visitor centers Blue Ridge Institute & Museum Ferrum, Va

Mabry Mill Restaurant & Gift Shop Meadows of Dan, VA

Peaks of Otter Lodge Blue Ridge Parkway Bedford, VA

Frontier Culture Museum Staunton, VA

Mast General Store Waynesville, NC Mystery Hill Blowing Rock, NC

Pisgah Inn Blue Ridge Parkway Waynesville, NC

Grandfather Mountain Linville, NC Linville Caverns Linville Falls, NC

Northwest Trading Post Glendale Springs, NC

Skyland & Big Meadows Lodges Shenandoah National Park VA Transportation Museum Roanoke, VA VA Museum of the Civil War New Market, VA

Southwest Virginia Cultural Center & Marketplace 1 Heartwood Cir, Abington, VA 24210 (276) 492-2400 • Staunton Travel Information Center 1290 Richmond Rd. (I-81 Exit 222) Staunton, VA 24401 • (540) 332-3972 Staunton Visitor’s Center 35 South New St. • Staunton,VA 24401 540-332-3971 • Virginia’s Explore Park Visitor Center 59 Roanoke River Parkway, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 115 Roanoke, VA 24014 • (540) 427-1800 Western Highlands Visitor Center 241 W. Main St. • Covington, VA 24426 (540) 962-2178 Winchester-Frederick County CVB 1400 S. Pleasant Valley Rd. Winchester, VA 22601 (877) 871-1326 • Wytheville CVB 975 Tazewell St. • Wytheville, VA 24382 (276) 223-3355 • Toll free (877) 347-8307

WEST VIRGINIA West Virginia Welcome Center 37 Washington Court at US 340 Harpers Ferry, WV 25435 (866) -HELLO-WV •

KENTUCKY Cumberland Gap Nhp Visitor Center 91 Bartlett Rd • Middlesboro, KY 40965 (606) 248-2817





Located just off I-40 exit #44 at 120 Highland Center Blvd. 30+ years RV repair experience.

Contact: markcoyne@rocketmail. com or (828) 553-7111


Mountain Lodging Food Fun NORTH CAROLINA

ASHEVILLE, NC Asheville East KOA-Exit 59 off I-40 big rigs & tenters welcome. Wooded sites, with pool, lake & river fishing. 800-562-5907 or (828) 6863121. 2708 Hwy 70E, Swannanoa, NC 28778. Asheville West KOA-Exit 37 off I-40 Something for everyone, RV’s, tenters, cabins. In foothills, wooded sites, hiking trails, pool. (800) 5629015. 309 Wiggins Rd., Candler, NC 28715. Bear Creek RV Park - Exit Rt. 191 from Parkway; I-40 Exit 47; or I-26 Exit 2. 3 miles north of Parkway off Rt. 191. 5 mins. Biltmore House. 90 full hookups, paved sites, pool, laundry. Open year round. (800) 833-0798 Grovewood Village Discover a hidden gem rich with art and history. Listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this 11acre property is home to Grovewood Gallery, 8 working artist studios, the Estes-Winn Antique Car Museum, and the Biltmore Industries Homespun Museum. Adjacent to Omni Grove Park Inn. (828) 214-7768 Mast Store – 15 Biltmore Ave., Downtown Asheville. Dating to the 1940s, find home décor, camping gear, shoes, clothing, and hundreds of favorite candies. 828-232-1883 Rug & Home - Over 20,000 oriental rugs & home accessories. Finest rugs from India, China, Pakistan, Persia, Turkey, Egypt, Karastan, Milliken. Tapestries, needlepoints, oil paintings, antique furniture, brass, crystal, & Tiffany lamps, mirrors. Local & national artists. Sculptures and fine porcelain. Located at I-26, exit 33 behind Ethan Allen. Open 7 days. (828) 667-4585.

BANNER ELK, NC Smoke Tree Lodge - 12 miles south of Boone on Hwy 105. Nestled at the foot of Grandfather Mtn. Condo-apts, heated indoor pool, ESPN, Jacuzzi, saunas. (800) 422-1880.

BLOWING ROCK, NC Alpine Village Inn - 297 Sunset Dr. Quaint cozy rooms & suites in the heart of town. AC, CCTV, & phones, WiFi complimentary. Some fireplaces & Jacuzzi. Pet friendly rooms. (828) 295-7206. Alpine Village Townhomes Vacation Rentals 2+ Bedroom, special offers.Great Views, heated pool/summer, clubhouse and amenities, cable TV, special golf fees. 3 miles west of Parkway, exit Hwy 80. No pets. 727-389-3404 Blowing Rock Art & History Museum - Free admission, open year round. Must-see destination for visual art & Appalachian heritage. 159 Ginny Stevens Ln. (828) 295-9099. Hemlock Inn & Suites - 134 Morris St. Downtown Blowing Rock. 1/2 mile to Parkway. Open year round. Walk to shops and restaurants. (828) 295-7987. Village Inns of Blowing RockNo Smoking, Wi-Fi/Breakfast. Suites/ Cottages/Rooms. Some Pet Friendly Rooms. (828) 295-3001

BOONE, NC Foscoe Rentals - Cabins, Condos and Vacation homes centrally located to Boone, Banner Elk and Blowing Rock. (800) 723-7341. Hidden Valley Motel- Birds, blooms and butterflies in the Foscoe Valley. Hwy 105 south between Boone and Banner Elk. Call 828/963-4372. or email:

KOA Kampground - From Boone, 194N 3 miles. Left on Ray Brown Rd. 1 mile. Beautiful view. Rec room, mini golf, laundry. 123 Harmony Mtn. Lane, Boone, NC 28607. 828-264-7250. Mast Store – 630 W King St., Downtown Boone. Built in the 1920s, this charming store is filled with most everything you need for life: clothing, trail & travel gear, old-fashioned candy. 828-262-0000 NC High Country Host Visitor Center- 6370 US HWY 321 South Blowing Rock, NC 28605; (800) 4387500

BURNSVILLE, NC Alpine Village Townhomes Vacation Rentals 2+ Bedroom, special offers. Great Views, heated pool/summer, clubhouseand amenities, cable TV, special golf fees. 3 miles west of Parkway, exit Hwy 80. No pets. 727-389-3404

FALL 2021

Be sure to tell them you saw it in THE DIGEST! will endure forever. Marvel at 360-degree views from the Mile High Swinging Bridge, stand eye-to-eye with native wildlife in natural habitats and interact with our friendly, knowledgeable staff. One mile from Blue Ridge Parkway; take th Linville exit at Milepost 305 to U.S. 221 South. Open daily, weather permitting, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. $22 adult, $20 senior 60+, $9 child 4-12, under 4 (828) 733-4337 or (800) 468-7325.

LINVILLE FALLS, NC Linville Caverns - 19929 US 221 N. Marion. 4 miles South of Parkway, MP 317. NC’s ONLY show cavern. 800-419-0540. Linville Falls Lodge & Cottages - BRP Milepost 317.4, US 221S, 1 mile to walk to falls & gorge. (828) 765-2658.


Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park - More than a Rock, it’s a Mountain of Possibilities. Six unique hiking trails. 404-foot waterfall. 26-story elevator inside mountain. Woodland animal programs and exhibits. Pet friendly. Old Rock Café overlooking the river. Open all year. 40 min SE of Asheville. 828-625-9611.

HENDERSONVILLE, NC Mast Store – 527 N Main St., Downtown Hendersonville. Built in 1905 and embodying the essence of the era, this store is packed with clothing, gift ideas, country gourmet foods, & more! 828-696-1883 Discover Hendersonville! Check out our Stay & Play Packages & Room Availability! Hendersonville Visitors Center, 201 S Main Street, Hendersonville, NC. 1-800-828-4244. Open 7 days a week.

LINVILLE, NC Grandfather Mountain - Grandfather’s lofty heights offer guests opportunities for rejuvenation, excitement and family memories in a natural haven that

Emerald Village - Real mines, mine tours, & gem mining. Other free displays: railroad, music museum, wildlife. MP334. 828-765-6463.

Switzerland Cafe & General Store - MP 334 1/4 mile of the Parkway. Lunch and weekend dinners. Souvenirs and picnic items. 828-765-5289. Switzerland Inn And Chalet Restaurant - A little bit of Switzerland in NC. Fantastic mountain views, rooms, suites, cottages, dining, shopping, tennis. Located directly on the Blue Ridge Parkway at the Little Switzerland exit near Parkway Milepost 334. Little Switzerland, NC 28749. (828) 765-2153 or (800) 6544026.

MAGGIE VALLEY, NC Boyd Mountain Log Cabins 7 Authentic cabins, fireplaces, AC, cable, WIFI. Choose n cut Christmas tree farm, trout fishing, hiking. (828) 926-1575.

FALL 2021

Maggie Valley Area Chamber of Commerce - US 19, Eastern entrance to the Great Smokies. Escape. Explore. Exhale. Maggie Valley Area Chamber of Commerce, PO Box 279, Maggie Valley, 28751. Jonathan Creek Inn & Maggie Valley Villas - MP 455.7 AAA 3 Diamond Rated. Creekside and Hot Tub Rooms, Creekside & Mountain View Villas, Indoor Heated Pool, Children’s Play Area. 1-800-577-7812.

McDOWELL CO., NC McDowell Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center - Shopping & food near center. Free coffee & area info. Clean restrooms. From Parkway MP 317, 24 mi. S on US 221. From MP331: 15 mi S on NC226. (828) 652-4240.

SPARTA & GLADE VALLEY, NC Alleghany Inn - 341 N. Main St., Sparta, NC 28675. 64 Rooms - Free Wireless Internet - Cable TV 60+ Chan, Guest Laundry - Restaurant on site. 888) 372-2501 Reserve online:

SPRUCE PINE, NC Gem Mountain - 13780 Hwy 226. 1 mile from Parkway. Gem mine. Rain or shine. Mine trips available. People’s choice for Gem mining. Peak Mountain Cottages & Retreat Center--On 300 acres, 7 miles N of Pkwy. Room to play or relax. Hiking trails, clear mtn streams. 460 Rabbit Hop Rd near Penland. Individuals,families or groups up to 25. 828-765-9559.

VALLE CRUCIS, NC Mast General Store & Annex Highway 194. Est. 1883 & listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this authentic general store is filled with the best of yesterday and today including camping gear, shoes & boots, housewares, candies, and an impressive collection of knives. 828-963-6511


WAYNESVILLE, NC Mast Store – 63, N Main St., Downtown Waynesville. Serving the area since 1935, this store is brimming with clothing, shoes, cast iron cookware, candy, & camping gear. 828-452-2101


GATLINBURG, TN Ski Mountain Chalet & Condo Rentals - 1-4 bedrooms , hot tubs, jacuzzis, pool tables, kitchens, fireplaces, privacy. (800) 824-4077.


GALAX, VA Cool Breeze Campground 2330 Edmonds Rd.Galax,VA MP215 off BRP, Full Hookups Bathhouse,Laundry,Big Rig Friendly,Free WIFI,Rally Center,276-236-0300


Grand Caverns - 5 Grand Caverns Dr, Grottoes, VA, America’s oldest continuously operated show cave. Nature’s handiwork & gifts. 888-430-CAVE.

HARRISONBURG, VA The Village Inn - 1 mile south of I-81, Exit 243, on US 11.  American Automobile Association Three Diamond Award. (540) 434-7355, toll free reservations-1-800-736-7355.

Peaks of Otter Winery & Orchards - 2122 Sheep Creek Rd, 24523. MP 86. Fruit wine, fruit, jams, jellies, free tastings. Vacation rentl house. 540-586-3707. Natural Bridge Zoo - 5784 S. Lee Hwy I-81 exit 180A Natural Bridge or 24578. 540-291-2420, naturalbridgezoo. Gross’ Orchard & Apple Valcom. Largest collection of birds and anley Homeplace - Vacation Home imals in Virginia. Elephant rides, giraffe, Rental. Open year round. $75 per tigers, bears, monkeys, birds and more! couple per night. Mountain grown fruit Petting zoo, gift shop, picnic area. Open & produce. Bedford, VA. Rt. 43 in Apple mid March to November. Valley. Open Year round. U-pick or U-select. Apple Festival 3rd Sat. in Oct. (540) 586-2436.



CHARLOTTESVILLE, VA Montfair Resort Farm - Pet friendly cabins by lake. 30 min from Parkway. Wi-fi, linens & cookware provided. Canoe, hike, fish. (434) 8235202.

Blue Ridge Real Estate Cabin Rentals-- Residential, land and commercial properties as well as Log Cabin Sales and Vacation Rentals. or 276-694-2001.

Buffalo Mountain Getaway-Perfect location for your getaway in Skyland Lakes Golf Club - Right Virginia. Get away from it all. on Parkway at milepost 202.2. New 18 Cottage or Cabin near the Buffalo Mountain in Floyd. 540.789.8335 hole public course. Beautiful scenery. Motel & golf packages available. (276) 728-4923. Laurel Point Villa - Breathtaking views of the Blue Ridge Mountains! Large vacation rental is a mix of modern conChantilly Farm Campground. veniences and charm & is a great place 2697 Franklin Pike SE. RV sites: for family gatherings. (850) 712-1139. electric, water, sewer, tent camping w/ amenities. WiFi, ice, ATM. 540-808 -4984 Pond View Guesthouse Guesthouse is conveniently located Floyd Visitors Center just off the Blue Ridge Parkway 109 E. Main St., Floyd, VA 24091 near Meadows of Dan, VA. Mountain town with unique music, arts, outdoor fun! 540-745-4407 or (276) 952-2624.



Primland Resort - 2000 Busted Rock Road. Resort Lodge, Fairway Cottages, Mountain Homes. Spectacular views. Golf. Spa. Dining, Outdoor activities. 276.222.3800 Willville Motorcycle Campground 26 acre wooded park located less than one mile from the Blue Ridge Parkway in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia. or (276) 952-CAMP.

RADFORD, VA Radford Visitor’s Center - Rt 8 to I-81 Exit 109 “Find It in Radford”-surrounded on 3 sides by the New River & overflowing with history 540-267-3153

ROANOKE, VA Mast General Store - In downtown at 401 S. Jefferson St. Our newest old location dates to 1915 and is filled with old favorites and new ones too! 540-566-5661. Virginia’s Blue Ridge. Take a drive on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Shop at the markets and boutiques in Downtown Roanoke and Salem. Hike on a trail in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Discover wildlife while kayaking on the Upper James River Water Trail. Dine at a local restaurant and enjoy fresh, amazingly prepared ingredients. Watch the sunset aboard a cruise at Smith Mountain Lake. All these things to do and more can be part of your Blue Ridge Day.No matter what you decide to do, every day in the Roanoke Valley in Virginia’s Blue Ridge Mountains is filled with friendship and old-fashioned hospitality. Discover what makes visiting Virginia’s Blue Ridge unique! (800) 635-5535.

SALEM, VA Come and visit Salem, Virginia that is only twenty minutes from the parkway. Take the walking tour of our historic downtown featuring quaint antique shops and restaurants. Stay for a while in one of our hotels or B&B’s and attend one of our many athletic events including NCAA National Championships in football, basketball and softball. Salem is also the home of the Salem Red Sox, advanced Class “A” affiliate of the Boston Red Sox playing their games in spacious and comfy Lewis Gale Field.


FALL 2021

An Apple a Day? Head to Hendersonville, NC, for a Double Dose In this apple capital, harvest season begins in early August and continues into November.


enderson County leads North Carolina in apple production and consistently ranks among the nation’s top producers. Hendersonville apples show up in supermarkets and restaurants throughout the

region, but the best way to eat one is straight from the tree. The Crest of the Blue Ridge Orchard Trail outlines 21 orchards, roadside stands and markets throughout Henderson County. The self-guided trail encourages

visitors to create their own apple-country itineraries. Brochures are available online at www. and at the Hendersonville Visitor Center. Many orchards embrace agritourism, offering apple picking, as well as corn mazes, pumpkin patches, hayrides, barnyard animals and even apple cannons. More than 20 different varieties of apples grow in Hendersonville orchards. Each variety has its own ripening timeline. Honey-

crisp and McIntosh are some of the early birds, while Rome and pink lady come later. Early in the season, you can also find peaches and blueberries, with pears and grapes following shortly after. Fresh apple cider, as well as apple-cider doughnuts, apple fritters and apple butter are all made on-site. For more apple season info: or (800) 828-4244.

Find Historic National Treasures in Bedford, VA


edford, Virginia is located along the Blue Ridge Parkway in the mountain region of Virginia. About ten miles off the Parkway is the Town of Bedford. In Bedford you will find outdoor adventure, historic attractions, locally-owned restaurants and shops, wineries, breweries, and a variety of overnight lodging accommodations. Come see why Smithsonian Magazine named it one of the “15 Best Small Towns to Visit” and why it was named a “Top Small Adventure Town” by readers of Blue Ridge Outdoors! Businesses and attractions are open and practicing safety guidelines. Daily tours are offered at the National D-Day Memorial (dday. org) and Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest ( It’s recommended to purchase advance tickets online for a discounted price.

Purchase a Combo Ticket for a cost savings off admission if planning to visit both attractions. While in Bedford, be sure to stop by the Bedford Area Welcome Center at 816 Burks Hill Road, across from the entrance to the National D-Day Memorial. The Center is open daily 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. offering free Wi-Fi, a firefighter exhibit, gift shop, RV hook-ups, electric car charging station, LOVE sign, and more. If you are planning to visit and would like information emailed or mailed ahead of time, give us a call at (540) 587-5681 or go to and click on Contact Us. We look forward to seeing you this fall!

Photo by Jack Calhoun

FALL 2021

FALL INTO ART 50th Virginia Fall Foliage Art Show in Waynesboro


By Rebecca Laflam eld outdoors annually in downtown Waynesboro, the Virginia Fall Foliage Art Show is one of the finest in the region. The juried art show includes paintings, photography, sculpture, pottery, metalwork,



glasswork, jewelry, and other media. The 2021 festival will take place the second weekend in October, on Saturday, October 9 (10 am-5pm) and Sunday, October 10 (12 pm-5pm). Approximately 150 artists and artisans from the Shenandoah

Valley region participate in this crowd-pleasing festival that is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. First time visitors can expect a juried art show for two and three dimensional works, led by locals who will decide the winner of Best in Show and give out $10,000 in awards. While some of the festival’s best-loved artists have now retired, a wave of newcomers have joined the scene, and will be featured in the “Emerging & Local Artists” exhibit. Art stalls line Waynesboro’s historic downtown, where people have the opportunity to meet the artists and purchase their works directly. Boasting thousands of visitors annually, the Fall Foliage Festival is produced by the Shenandoah Valley Art Center. Just minutes off the Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive, the Art Show is free, so bring some friends and family to support your favorite artists at

SUNDAY DRIVES everyday of the week

While you meander our approximately 30 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway, there are also picnics at a covered bridge, canoe rides, traditional mountain music, artisan studios, camping, hiking, mountain biking, fishing, local wineries, and bed and breakfasts awaiting you. From the rugged outdoors to 5-Star luxury, there is so much to discover in Patrick County.

the largest open air art festival in the Shenandoah Valley! Local food vendors, craft brewers, and food trucks will gather at Lumos Plaza, where roots music provides the perfect soundscape for relaxing and exploring the maze of artists’ tents. Families can get into the action through the public art program for youth, where kids can decorate the city’s sidewalks with chalk, exploring art while also experiencing it. While you are in Waynesboro, be sure to explore the city’s ever-growing street art presence. More than a dozen murals of various sizes and subjects decorate the Waynesboro cityscape ~ many from award-winning international artists. Stop by the Visitor Center to get a walking map of the Waynesboro Street Arts Trail. More information at


FALL 2021

Dine Out On Main Street in Staunton Story by Rebecca Laflam • Photo by @kimphillips123


ooking for a restaurant with outdoor seating? Downtown Staunton is making it easy to find plenty of delicious choices, all in one charming location.

What started as a way to help its restaurants survive the pandemic has turned into a new favorite way to experience what Travel + Leisure calls one of “America’s



Visit the area attractions


• Downtown Galax • Rex Theatre • Blue Ridge Music Ctr •New River Trail


Big Rig Friendly Full Hook ups Wireless Internet


Favorite Mountain Towns.” COVID has been difficult for everyone, and the restaurant industry has been particularly hard hit. As the pandemic grew, and indoor dining became less feasible, restaurants across the country felt the impact. Fortunately, downtown Staunton had the perfect solution: open main street to people and restaurants and close it to cars. The program, called Shop & Dine Out, launched in 2020 and was an immediate hit. Now, every weekend through October, Staunton’s Main Street is closed off to vehicular traffic, transforming what Architectural Digest calls one of “America’s Most Beautiful Main Streets” into a charming pedestrian zone full of outdoor tables for dining and cocktails. Dining out on Staunton’s Main Street is a visual feast as well as a culinary experience. The city’s award-winning historic district

is lined with red brick sidewalks, and features an eclectic array of downtown architecture. Restaurants participating in the Beverley Street outdoor dining include BLU Point Seafood Co., The By & By, The Green Room, Shenandoah Valley Brewing Co., The Split Banana, Laughing Bird Pho, The Pampered Palate Café, and Zynodoa. Plenty of parking is available in city parking garages and on adjacent side streets. The Queen City is located in the heart of the Shenandoah Valley, about 20 minutes from the Rockfish Gap entrance to Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive. Downtown Staunton is a distinctive destination in its own right, and paired with a vibrant outdoor dining experience, it’s a must-do.

More info:

Did You Know?

CALL US TODAY! 276-236-0300

Did you Know While there are many caverns to visit in the mountains of Virginia and east Tennessee, there is only one open to the public on North Carolina-Linville Caverns, located a few miles north of Marion on US 221.



of Madison County

historic barns with photographs, Who doesn’t love a barn? “Very few people” is what a architectural sketches, and oral group of passionate barn and heritage lovers in Madison County, NC, have discovered since they gathered in 2012 to form what was to become the Appalachian Barn Alliance (ABA). This volunteer 501c 3 group of people has worked to preserve the rural heritage of Madison County and surrounding areas through the documentation of the historical barn building traditions and the barns they represent for future generations. In those nine short years, their contracted researcher, Taylor Barnhill, has documented over 100

histories about both the family and facts about the barn buildings themselves. This work is unique to North Carolina and the whole Southeast. The information is transformed into several one-hour self-guided driving tours to encourage people to appreciate the heritage represented by these iconic barns. However, the barns are disappearing from the landscape as weather takes its toll. So, the ABA has added a new focus— to create a heritage farmstead with examples of the different types of the Southern Appalachian style barn

Anderson Farmstead in Mars Hill, NC

and a display of the research collected in the Welcome Center. A partnership with the town of Mars Hill, NC, on the Smith Farm on the Bailey Mountain Preserve will do just that. The group continues to be busy with the documentation and

developing the Heritage Farmstead. Their two biggest fundraisers are an Annual Barn Tour Event (September 11) and an Art Gala Benefit (October 15). For information about the self-guided tours and the events, go to


FALL 2021

PUMPKIN PATCHES, CORN MAZES & APPLE ORCHARDS, OH MY!! Add to the NC mountain memories you are making with your family this fall with some old-fashioned fun. Choose a pumpkin straight from the patch and get lost in a corn maze! Pick your own apples and enjoy an apple cider slushy or fresh apple pie—all while taking in the beautiful fall leaf color!

PUMPKIN PATCHES & CORN MAZES Harvest Farm Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch Valle Crucis, NC Harvest farm is located almost next door to the Original Mast General Store. The farm has a 7 acre corn maze and a large pumpkin patch New River Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch Deep Gap, NC (5 minutes from Boone) The Brown Family Farm is located just outside of Boone, NC and offers a pumpkin patch, corn maze, haunted corn maze, tractor-pulled hay rides and train ride.

It’s well known that we have Trout in our waters, but have you ever heard of Hellbenders, Creek Chub, Tangerine Darters, Mottled Sculpins or Warpaint Shiners? A visit to Bryson City’s newest attraction - The Appalachian Rivers Aquarium - will quickly enlighten you about what’s beneath your feet as you wade in a mountain stream or river bed.

What Lurks Beneath the Ripples of Appalachia’s Mountain Streams?

Ashe County Corn Maze West Jefferson, NC The maze features much more than a corn maze! Make a day of your trip and play horse shoes and corn hole, jump in the bounce house, try the pumpkin cannon, roast a marshmallow and get your face painted on the weekend.


The Orchard at Altapass Blue Ridge Parkway MP 328.3 The orchard offers free live music, apple picking, fresh apple pie and ice cream, and a country store.

The Aquarium may be small, but the diversity of species to view and learn about will surprise you. Not your average-size salamander, two large, protected Eastern Hellbenders can be viewed from the sides and underneath their display tank. Of course there are little salamanders (pictured), as well as tanks with game and nongame fish. The mountain stream is a three-tank exhibit with the many trout species found in our area. The Aquarium is located at 117 Island Street, on the Tuckasegee River in downtown Bryson City, NC. Free admission, donations welcomed. For more info, visit:

Perry Lowe Orchard Moravian Falls, NC Take a hayride into the orchard to pick your own apples. When you get back to the barn, enjoy apple cider donuts, drinks, pies— and shoot the apple cannon!

For more details, visit

FALL 2021


Look Up!

A Closer Look

Birds of Prey ranger-led programs at Shenandoah National Park are available Tuesdays and Saturdays, and there visitors can meet a live raptor while learning about their importance to the environment. Take the trip up Skyline Drive By Rebecca LaFlam to ensure you don’t miss these avian adventures that are sure to leave you “pere-grinning.” (Note: while the ranger programs are free, there is an entrance fee to access Skyline Drive in Shenandoah National Park.) Luray’s Raptor Hill in Stanley, Virginia provides a unique opportunity to get up close with and first two weeks of October. Detheir feathered team, a select pending on the day, visitors might be group of eight different raptors. able to see as many as 10,000 hawks From Mr. Wiggles the Red-Tailed in one day, with an annual average Hawk to Buddy Munchins the male of 20,000 hawks migrating through American Kestrel, this is a must-visit this path each year. It’s guaranteed location for family and friends. to be “owl” you can talk about!

Annual Fall Migrations of Raptors Over Skyline Drive


irds of prey are soon headed your way, scheduled to cross through Virginia airspace in their annual migratory flight to South America. No, these are not the reptilian prehistoric dinosaurs Spielberg thrilled viewers with in Jurassic Park, but instead their distant relatives, or as they are commonly “clawed,” raptors! This species features a multitude of creatures such as eagles, falcons, owls, and most notably the broad-winged hawk. Visitors and locals alike won’t want to miss this

exciting yearly occurrence. Rockfish Gap is one of 200 hawk watch sites in North America. If you go, look for hawk watch volunteers near the former Inn at Afton (elevation 2,000 ft), just off highway 64 at exit 99 just east of Waynesboro. This site is easy and accessible - simply drive up, park, and hawk watch. You’ll enjoy a 180 degree panoramic view north over Rockfish Gap, west over the Shenandoah Valley, and east over the Piedmont Region. Peak migration typically occurs in the final two weeks of September

Natural Beauty I

f you place meaningful value on natural beauty, add this region of the Blue Ridge Mountains to your "must-see" list. North Carolina is famous for its fall foliage. For McDowell County, significant elevation changes offer an extended leaf season. Amazing colors begin to appear around the third weekend of October. This is when the Blue Ridge, Parkway between Crabtree Falls and Linville Falls, transforms into an artist's dream. The color palette is rich, varied, and vibrant. When the light is just right, you may see regional artists painting by the overlooks, capturing that perfect moment in time. As we approach the fourth weekend of October, the lower elevations begin to peak with fall colors.

Merge your love of curvy mountain roads with fall color and follow the Lake James Loop. The 89-mile ride meanders through the higher elevations, along the Blue Ridge Parkway, dipping down to a road north of Marion, Lake James Road. The curves and landscapes are breathtaking. The loop includes a 12-mile section affectionately referred to as the DiamondBackNC, aka NC Highway 226-A. There are 190 curves, sharp switchbacks, and awesome scenery. If car sickness is an issue for you, skip this section of the trail. Otherwise, ride the loop and take a break in Little Switzerland. Shops, restaurants, and lodging are open through October 31st, with some lodging properties extending their season into November.

START at Milepost 334 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Travel south.

Begin your ride in Little Switzerland, NC at Milepost 334/Blue Ridge Parkway. Travel south on the Parkway to enjoy tunnels and overlooks. The valley descent is fun and easy as you approach Lake James. Hundreds of curves and awesome views!

We have details and information, all free. Call 828-668-4282 or visit online.


2-day Itinerary:

Weekday Getaway in Blowing Rock stargazing! Price Lake is an ideal spot for it. When the lake is still, it reflects the sky. Tip: Autumn mornings are chilly; dress in light layers.

Thursday- Downtown

Morning: Reflective Price Lake, Todd Bush photo.

Autumn weekends Evening: Skies over the Parkway are full of can be very busy stars at night. Cooler fall temperatures reduce haziness- great for on the Blue Ridge Parkway; skip peak times with a weekday visit!

Blowing Rock Art & History Museum opens three new exhibits open this fall. It’s right on Main Street, alongside downtown boutiques & galleries. After exhibits: shopping!


Try a wine flight at Sunset & Vine, where they’ll help you pick wines you’ll love. Prefer beer? The Blowing

FALL 2021

Rock Ale House is right next door with locally made brews. In September, don’t miss the Blowing Rock Farmer’s Market, Thursdays 3-6pm.


Wrap up the day with live music! Try Speckled Trout or Chetola for Thursday performances. Tip: Stay at one of the 20+ hotels, inns, & rentals within easy walking distance of downtown, and skip looking for parking spaces.

25+ local restaurants offer many dining options. Most local attractions are open mid-week in September & October; book more fun to extend your trip!

Blue Ridge

Potter’s Guild

Wednesday- Parkway


Start the day at the Cone Estate. The manor house is being restored to its original beauty! A Southern Highland Craft Guild gallery is inside.


Blowing Rock has many trails to wander, and crisp fall days are perfect for hiking. For a moderate hike, follow Flat Top trail from the manor to the Tower. 360° views at the top! Want to ride instead of hike? Book a trail ride with Vx3 and enjoy the Cone Carriage Trails from horseback.

Annual Show & Sale October 30-31, 2021

The Blue Ridge Potter’s Guild 22nd annual show and sale featuring many ceramic artists will be held October 30-31, 2021 at North Cross High School, Carter Athletic Center. The Blue Ridge Potter’s Guild consists of over 125 members and was founded in 1996. Our members range from new emerging potters as well as many award winning seasoned clay artists. We represent more than 1,000 years of pottery making experience and show a large variety of different

types of clay building techniques and processes for making and firing their ceramics. This is one of the largest indoor pottery show and sales in the Southeast. Free admission and free parking. Door prizes of member’s pottery awarded throughout the weekend.

Show times are: Saturday, October 30 from 10am – 6pm Sunday, October 31 from 11am – 5pm

Ingrid Chase, “Mugs”

Maya Bohler, “Plate with Leaves”

North Cross High School is located at 4254 Colonial Avenue, Roanoke, VA 24018 For additional information visit


See Inside A MOUNTAIN! Oct 1-3, 2021

Enjoy The Fall Season In



or those seeking a fall experience they’ve not enjoyed before, Sevierville’s five self-guided fall driving tours offer picturesque views along scenic backroads while highlighting little known points of interest and can be found online at Peak season for leaf viewing is typically mid-October through mid-November, but Harvest themed events run from mid-September through the end of October. Bluegrass music is the soundtrack of fall and the Dumplin Valley Bluegrass Festival (September 16-18, 2021) features original, live bluegrass music from fifteen national and regional acts includ-

ing Rhonda Vincent & The Rage, Lonesome River Band and more. Catch more mountain music (and fine arts) at Robert Tino’s Smoky Mountain Homecoming Festival (October 1-3, 2021). Sevierville’s newest fall event is History & Haunts in downtown Sevierville. Enjoy guided historical walking tours, fun costume contests, harvest-themed activities and more during this family friendly event (October 21, 2021). Take in the sights, sounds, and fun of Sevierville this fall. Start planning your getaway now at

Don’t Miss!

North Carolina's Only Caverns!

LINVILLE CAVERNS Located on U.S. 221 between Linville & Marion, 19929 US 221 North NC. - Just 3 1/2 miles south of the Blue Ridge Marion, NC Parkway, Exit Milepost 317.4, turn left on U.S. 800-419-0540 221 toward Linville Falls Village & Marion, NC 828-756-4171


The Bandit by Otto Wood

FALL 2021

Four Dozen Reasons to Uncork a Yadkin Valley Visit

The Freighthopping Thief, Bootlegger, and Convicted Murderer behind the Appalachian Ballads

Legions of bluegrass fans know the name Otto Wood (1893–1930) from a ballad made popular by Doc Watson, telling the story of Wood’s crimes and violent death. However, few know the history of this Appalachian figure beyond the larger-than-life version heard in song. Trevor McKenzie reconstructs Wood’s life, tracing how a Wilkes County juvenile delinquent became a celebrated folk hero. An early master of controlling his own narrative in the media, Wood appealed to the North Carolina public as a misunderstood, clever antihero. In 1930, after a final jailbreak, police killed Wood in a shootout. The ballad bearing his name first appeared less than a year later.


A recent project reveals four dozen reasons to visit North Carolina’s Yadkin Valley wine country. An industry survey determined the exact number of wineries in this region has grown to 48.

he Yadkin Valley American Viticultural Area covers approximately 2,000 square miles in all or parts of seven counties of northwestern North Carolina. The Blue Ridge Parkway runs through the northern portion of this region, and the Surry County Wine Trail highlights 20 of the 48 wineries that are in easy proximity to the Parkway. Golden Road Vineyards just outside Elkin became the 48th Yadkin Valley winery (and 20th on the Surry County Wine Trail) when it opened last Thanksgiving.

Golden Road is nestled at the edge of rolling foothills and framed by peaks of the Blue Ridge. Golden Road’s scenic location with a Blue Ridge Mountains backdrop is typical of many wineries along the Surry County Wine Trail. The beautiful scenery of these vineyards, coupled with easy access from the Parkway, draws an array of visitors. “We are seeing all types of trips being planned from couples to girlfriend getaways to multi-generational family trips,” says Jessica

Roberts, director of the Tourism Partnership of Surry County. “All of them are excited about what’s available in Yadkin Valley. They love the wineries and vineyards, plus other outdoor things to do, including our proximity to three state parks – Stone Mountain, Pilot Mountain and Hanging Rock.”

To learn more about NC wine country, visit

FALL 2021


BOONE NC FALL GUIDE The town of Boone is a great hub for your NC Mountains fall vacation. Normally, the 3rd Week of October is the best time to view peak leaf color, but color begins in early October!

BEST BOONE NC FALL WALKS: Howards Knob With an elevation of 4,420 feet, Howards Knob offers unparalleled views of Boone and Appalachian State University. The park features picnic tables and several lookout points.

The farm offers a pumpkin patch, corn maze, tractor-pulled tram ride and kids activities. LOCAL TIP: A picnic area and restrooms are available nearby so that you can make a day-long outing!


Take a zipline tour with Sky Valley Zip Tours or Hawksnest

Zipline and see the leaf color from inside the canopy!

Eat Too Much Candy

Head over to the Candy Barrel at Mast General Store in Boone or Mast General Store Annex in Valle Crucis. In both locations, you can pick up a basket to fill up from the barrels of old-fashioned candy favorites.

Boone NC Greenway Trail

A local favorite for walking, biking and letting your dog stretch there legs is the Greenway Trail. The trail is flat, paved and meanders through town, over creeks and through wooded areas.

MP 324.8

Rocky Knob Park

Rocky Knob Park has trails for both hiking and mountain biking. The park has 5 trails with the longest being 4 miles. The wooded trails have pleasing views of Boone. You can also visit the natural playground and picnic shelter.

TOP BOONE NC FALL ACTIVITIES: New River Corn Maze & Pumpkin Patch Deep Gap, NC (5 minutes from Boone, NC) mid-September

Your Base Camp for Mountain Adventure Bear-­‐ 828-­‐765-­‐2888

Spruce Pine, NC


FALL 2021

OLD COUNTRY STORES Carolina’s High Country. Seek them out and enjoy them. Shop, have a pop, listen to some music, swap some stories and mountain tales, and “set a spell!” High Country of North Carolina Country Stores: *For directions and hours, call the High Country Visitor Center at 828-264-1299.


lot of North Carolina High Country natives remember the time when a trip to town was conducted only, at the most, once a week. Outside of that, folks were dependent on the stockage of the local country store. In fact, a lot of the rural population, lacking automobiles, were limited to the

shopping trips they could make on foot. Country stores have been, and continue to be, vital institutions for shopping and socializing. In fact, the Town of Boone was originally called Councill’s Store! While many of the old stores have succumbed to fire and economic changes, some are still left to explore in North

Original Mast General Store, Valle Crucis Fred’s Mercantile, Beech Mountain

Stone Mountain Grocery, Bethel Old Hampton Store & Mill, Linville Todd Mercantile, Todd Old Orchard Creek General Store, Lansing

Celebrating the Seasons in Wilkesboro

Did You Know? Nantahala is the South’s only lake with freshwater Salmon?

Nantahala Lake is located high above the Nantahala River Gorge at a 3,000-foot elevation - a pristine and serene lake with just 30 miles of shoreline. The lake is regulated and maintained by Duke Power Company. Many anglers enjoy fishing the Nantahala reservoir due to the low number of boaters and the breathtaking scenery. Fish in the lake include Walleye, Crappie, Sunfish, Trout, and Bass. And it’s the only lake in the South with a population of freshwater Kokanee Salmon. Kokanee Salmon are the landlocked version of the Pacific Sockeye salmon. Stocked in Nantahala Lake in the early 1960’s as forage for the predator population of Walleye, Smallmouth and Largemouth Bass, the salmon have been naturally reproducing ever since. The average Kokanee Salmon across the country is 12” with a few lakes producing larger fish. Nantahala is one of those lakes. The average salmon in Nantahala is 18” with many fish over 20”. More information:

Colorful fall leaves, apple harvests, pumpkins in the fields, first snowflakes, Christmas trees on street corners -- fall and winter are a time of celebration and beauty in Wilkesboro.

Harvest-time Fun

If you like apple pie -- and who doesn’t? -- make plans to attend the Brushy Mountain Apple Festival operated by the Brushy Mountain Ruritan Club. The event celebrates the growers who are so much a part of this region, and visitors can get their fill of fried apple pies, apple butter, apple fritters and apple cider. You

can even see apple butter being made right before your eyes. Don’t let the name fool you, the apple festival is about much more than apples. More than 400 vendors line the streets of North Wilkesboro, offering a large variety of artists and crafts, including handmade jewelry, local pottery, stained glass, and more. When you’re ready for a break from the shopping, grab a bite to eat at one of the many food vendors and check out the entertainment at one of four different stages offering a constant line-up of music and performances throughout the day, from bluegrass and clogging to rock-and-roll.

Thousands of Rugs, Furniture & Accessories Available to Take Home Today!






• FI