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FALL

the most widely distributed travel publication in the mountains

2018

Blue Ridge & Great Smoky Mountains Elkin Festival Features Gourd-geous Array of Pumpkins Bedford is for Art & Music Lovers Adventure like a “trailsetter” Scenic Byway Drives for Peeping Leaf Season in the Boone Area

MUSIC | FUN | FOOD | FESTIVALS


BE A TRAILSETTER Explore Virginia’s Blue Ridge on hundreds of miles of trails and be rewarded with adventure, fun, stunning views and even refreshment. As America’s East Coast Mountain Biking Capital, we have award-winning singletrack options for all skill levels. We also have hiking trails, including the famous Appalachian Trail, and blueways and water trails for paddling and tubing. All around the Roanoke Valley, you’ll find fascinating museums, interesting attractions and allaround family fun. For a truly unique experience, check out the Virginia’s Blue Ridge Cheers Trail that links together craft breweries, wineries and distilleries.

PLAN YOUR BLUE RIDGE DAY AT

VisitVBR.com #BlueRidgeDay 800.635.5535

Mill Mountain Zoo 540-343-3241 MMZoo.org

Starr Hill Pilot Brewery & Side Stage 540-685-2012 StarrHill.com/Roanoke

Taubman Museum of Art

540-342-5760 TaubmanMuseum.org/Drive

Virginia Museum of Transportation

REGISTER ONLINE TO WIN A BLUE RIDGE MOUNTAINS GETAWAY

540-342-5670 VMT.org


Don’t take the same old journey. Be somewhere genuine. Be somewhere amazing. Be changed.

playanydaygetawaycation

Call for your complimentary

800.828.4244

Getaway Guide

visithendersonvillenc.org


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P.O. Box 1758 Asheville, NC 28802 Phone: (828) 667-1607 www.blueridgedigest.com 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.

Bedford is for Art and Music Lovers!

THANKS TO THE BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY ASSOCIATION FOR THE USE OF THEIR CENTER-SPREAD MAP

Publisher: Thomas Hardy

tomhardy@blueridgedigest.com Design: Imagewerks Productions Need good design? Call (828) 681-8029

FROM THE PUBLISHER

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 and 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. Cover image courtesy of www.visitvablueridge.com taken on the Blue Ridge Parkway near Roanoke, VA. If you are a past reader, you may recognize the cover photo from a couple years back. I liked it so well and got so many comments on it that we elected to use it again.

Enjoy your stay!

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all is here and the mountains are calling! If visiting the Peaks of Otter, be sure to make the short ten-minute trek into the Town of Bedford. As you arrive in historic downtown, you can’t miss the big pink building - the Bower Center for the Arts. The Center serves as an art gallery, performance and event venue, educational facility, and has become a cultural and entertainment destination! Also part of the Bedford Artisan Trail, the Bower Center presents live performances each month as well as hosts exhibitions and classes

throughout the year. It is also home to several resident artists. The Center is conveniently located within walking distance to several restaurants, unique shopping, Wharton Garden, Beale’s Brewery, and the Bedford Museum. Each September, the Bower Center hosts the annual “Bedford’s Finest Fare”, a familyfriendly street festival featuring the area’s finest in culinary, arts, and music. This year the event takes place on Sunday, September 9th, 3- 9 p.m. Advance tickets are available or purchase at the gate.

Bower Center for the Arts is open Tuesday-Saturday, 11 a.m. – 4 p.m. (extended hours during special events). Find out more at www.bowercenter.org. Every visit to Bedford should include a stop at the Bedford Area Welcome Center, 816 Burks Hill Road. The Welcome Center is open daily 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. and offers free Wi-Fi, gift shop, firefighter exhibit, RV hook-ups, electric car charging station, and more. Contact the Welcome Center at (540) 587-5681 or go to www.VisitBedford.com.


FALL 2018

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Beautiful Fall Roads

Wytheville Lead to

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Make a visit to Wytheville, Virginia, part of your fall getaway plans for a relaxing adventure with the backdrop of autumn beauty.

he area’s scenic backroads offer an escape from the hustle-bustle of interstate traffic and a glimpse at unique attractions along the way. Local farms offer a cornucopia of authentic activities as fields become blanketed with the orange of pumpkins. Festivals and events are frequent this time of year and focus on music, crafts, and even spooky activities. Music can be found at many locations in Downtown Wytheville including the Bolling Wilson Hotel. One of the most beautiful settings to enjoy music in the autumn is the stage at Big Walker Lookout. Every weekend

is a musical one at this mountain top location with a variety of local musicians, artisans and authors each Saturday and Sunday. Don’t forget that there’s always uplifting musical entertainment on the stage of Wohlfahrt Haus Dinner Theatre. From September 6 to October 28, the fall production will be “Country Roads.” This original revue blends the stars of past and present with toe-tapping songs and dance numbers to entertain audiences of all ages.

Recreational enthusiasts might want to check out Crystal Springs Recreation Area for the exhilarating hiking opportunities and breath-taking views. There’s plenty of flora and fauna for those young ones in your family to enjoy. For more info Wytheville Convention & Visitors Bureau, toll-free at 1-877-3478307, or visit www.VisitWytheville.com. Wytheville, Virginia…There’s Only One.


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FALL 2018

From Vibrant-Hued Leaves to Holiday Lights,

Pigeon Forge Brightens

This Fall, Winter

Mountain Winterfest Celebration

As summer begins to wind down and the weather begins to cool, the Smoky Mountains transform right before your eyes. The depths of greenery slowly turn to orange, red and yellow hues creating a beautiful backdrop to Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.

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eak leaf-peeping season million lights on display, visitors arrives in October, but there can attend the kick-off event on are many reasons to plan November 6 for an exciting a visit this fall and winter to the evening of entertainment and family-friendly free trolley vacation tours of the destination. light displays. The 29th Available Annual Smoky at www. Mountain MyPigeonForge. Winterfest com for the Celebration remainder of will light up Winterfest, a the streets downloadable of Pigeon map will provide Christmas at Dolly Parton’s Stampede Forge from a self-guided November 2018 through Winterfest Driving Tour of Lights February 2019. With over five throughout town.

Visitortips.com, where F.P.I.S., the east coast’s premier brochure distributor, brings you an online virtual brochure display. This site allows users to access brochures by city or region before leaving home or while traveling. With links to attractions websites & social media platforms we are delivering the power of brochures to the internet. In addition, several theaters along the Parkway have special edition holiday-themed shows to help you get into the spirit of the season. Christmas at Dolly Parton’s Stampede transforms the arena into a holiday wonderland featuring twinkling lights and a 60-foot-tall tree. A multi-milliondollar production, Christmas at Smoky Mountain Opry boasts the largest living Nativity scene in the area in addition to beautiful choreography and aerial effects. The Island at Pigeon Forge adorns over 40,000 ornaments, 5,000 feet of garland and half a million lights while roving carolers fill the air with music. One not-tobe-missed stop, The Incredible Christmas Place is the South’s largest permanent Christmas retailer (43,000 square feet!) and is a one-stop shop for all things Christmas. Additional information about Winterfest is available at www. MyPigeonForge.com/event/ Winterfest. To plan your visit to Pigeon Forge, visit www.MyPigeonForge.com.

Scan this QR code to download this app:

HIDDEN

GEMS

RV SERVICES ASHEVILLE, NC

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


FALL 2018

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Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park

himney Rock is known for its spectacular 75-mile views overlooking Lake Lure and the Hickory Nut Gorge, six unique hiking trails with varying levels pf difficulty, a 404-foot waterfall, wildlife programs and guided rock climbing opportunities. The 535-million-year-old monolith, Chimney Rock, is the centerpiece of the Park, and is accessible by taking a 26-story elevator ride inside the mountain in just 32 seconds or by climbing the 494-step Outcroppings trail affectionately coined the “Ultimate Stairmaster.” Bird lovers will converge on the Park for the 10th Annual Flock to the Rock, the region’s premier fall migration birding event on Saturday, Sept. 15. Guests can take an expertled bird walk and see live Birds of Prey programs From mid-October to early November, visitors can savor our

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7 legendary fall color display as well as sign up for a special guided night hike in October and one about the ecology of Chimney Rock in November. If you’re looking for a whole new perspective, book a rock climbing lesson in advance with Fox Mountain Guides. No experience is necessary, and all the equipment you’ll need will be supplied. After a visit to the Park, grab a salad, sandwich or scratch-made dessert at the Old Rock Café, located right next to the Park’s entrance gate overlooking the Rocky Broad River and the Rocky Broad RiverWalk in Chimney Rock Village The Park is located only 25 miles southeast of Asheville, N.C. off the Blue Ridge Parkway milepost 384.7. Open 8:30am7pm daily; Ticket Plaza closes 1 ½ hours before Park. Visit chimneyrockpark.com or call (800) 277-9611.

We have a place for you TO SLEEP in Guaranteed Best Rate when you make your reservation at Super8.com.

Super 8 Boone NC 2419 Highway 105, Boone, NC, 28607

866-539-0036

• Free deluxe continental breakfast • Free wireless high-speed Internet access in all rooms • Free local calls • Outdoor heated pool • Game room

After a day of adventure, come back to the hotel to a heated indoor pool & soothing whirlpool. Clean & spacious rooms with king or queen beds, refrigerators, free high-speed Internet access, microwave ovens. Free Bright Side BreakfastTM. Pet friendly

Boone 165 Highway 105 Ext Boone, NC 28607 1-828-262-1234

Complimentary Morning Medley breakfast Outdoor pool Guest Laundry Ample parking

163 Hwy 105 Ext Boone, NC, US, 28607 Phone: (828) 262-0020


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FALL 2018

18TH Annual Skyland Apple Butter Celebration Saturday, September 15, 2018 | 10am-5pm Skyland (mile 41.7 and 42.5 on Skyline Drive)

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ome to Skyland as the staff sets up the copper kettles and stokes up the fire for a day of apple boiling. Watch the process, give the kettle a stir, try a delicious sample, and take home some fresh-from-the-kettle jars of apple butter!

Their chefs will be creating a great menu of items such as Pulled Pork BBQ Sandwich with Apple Spiced BBQ Sauce, Hotdog with Apple Relish, Hamburgers and Cheeseburgers, Smoked Pepper Chili Cornbread,

Cole Slaw, Baked Apples, Corn on the Cob, Baked Beans, Apple Fritters à la Mode, Apple Cobbler à la Mode, Apple Turnovers, Apple Strudel, and Hot and Cold Apple Cider. Wine and hard cider tasting, pony rides, children’s crafts, and live entertainment are also featured throughout the day! Stay at Skyland (mile 41.7 & 42.5) for convenient, in-park lodging closest to the activities! Or, there’s also Big Meadows Lodge (mile 51) not too far down Skyline Drive. But, book now, because rooms fill fast!

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Mondays, Apr 23 - Nov 2

Visit the Copper Fox Distillery, Desert Rose Winery, and Rappahannock Cellars while enjoying guided narration about the park and region. A picnicstyle lunch is included. Departure Time: 10:30 a.m. Return Time: 4:15 p.m. Tasting Fees: $7 - $10 per person, per vineyard/distillery NOTE: Tasting fees are not included in rates and are paid by guest at time of tasting. Valid for adults only, 21 years of age or older.

For more information:

www.goshenandoah.com/activities-events/festivals/apple-buttercelebration or 877-847-1919.

Enjoy Live Music at Mabry Mill 2018 Sunday Concert Series ld time music, or some variation of it, is as much a part of this region as the way residents cook their food, wear their clothes, or speak to you on the street. It is an outpouring and an overflowing of the landscape, the culture, and people. The Blue Ridge Parkway may be thought of as a

Wine & Cider Tasting Whisky-Wine Excursion

connecting route between many important stories, music being one of those for certain. All performances are free of charge, and bring chairs or blankets for seating. Concerts may be canceled in the event of lightening or other extreme weather conditions.

2018 Concert Series Concerts 1 pm – 4 pm.

September 2: ..... Southfork Ram blers September 9: ..... The Origina l Orchard Grass September 16: ... Fork Mounta in Ramblers September 23: ... Jason Phillips and Friends September 30: ... New River Bou nd October 7: ........ Southfork Ram blers October 14: ...... Easy Pickins October 21: ...... Fork Mounta in Ramblers Other Demonstrations Blue Ridge Parkway Interpreters are on site at Milepost 176.1 daily through October.


FALL 2018

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The Appalachian Mural Trail N

ew to the Appalachian Mural Trail are 4 magnificent murals located in Marion, Virginia. The featured art piece is Marion’s Musical Heritage Mural pictures tunesmiths and landmarks from the home of “The

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Official Television Series of Virginia, Song of the Mountains.” This is a monthly televised bluegrass and Americana music shown live from the historic Lincoln Theater in downtown Marion. Artist Tim White is also host of “Song of the Mountains”, and was the artist for the Bristol Sessions mural in nearby Bristol Tennessee.

You can see forever.

Together.

A popular mural, a “Giant Welcome to Marion” postcard mural, features a stylized postcard mural with local scenes, designed by Holly Thomas. “Patchwork of Marion”, Marion’s first mural, designed and also painted by local artist Holly Thomas contains stories of Marion’s community’s history woven into a quilt design. Another mural, “Mayan Mural”, is painted on the rear wall of the Lincoln Theater and represents a series of Mayan themed glyphs from the unique interior design of this restored 1929 theater. “Here is our very first mural Marion Revolution, designed and painted by Marion native Aaron

Barr, who now lives in NYC and is an accomplished graphics designer and artist. His mother approached us, asking if her son could do a graffiti style painting, and without hesitation, I said yes. We emailed concepts, and a friend of mine joined me in whitewashing The mural is on the wall at the Farmers Market corner of Cherry & Chestnut, in the heart of downtown. Take a moment and visit muraltrail.com to see these mountain cultural murals, obtain location information and travel directions for your own mural trail adventure!

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Hand in hand is a wonderful way to share the awe and delights that await you at Grandfather Mountain. Share the joy today and help us preserve it for tomorrow. w w w. g ra n d f a t h e r. c o m

GRANDFATHER® MOUNTAIN WONDERS NEVER CEASE


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Pick Apples & Make Memories along Hendersonville’s Orchard Trail Apple season in Hendersonville means orchards fill with families, couples, friends and school groups, beginning in early August and continuing into November.

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isitors enjoy coming to apple country for fresh fruit, but they also look forward to the memories made picking apples from the trees, watching cider being pressed and traveling the beautiful roads of Henderson County. The Crest of the Blue Ridge Orchard Trail includes 20 orchards, farms stands and markets, so customers can create their own itineraries. Henderson County is the leading apple producer in North Carolina and the seventh-largest producer in the country. In the

There are also less strenuous trails for the uninitiated. And lots of shops and galleries for people who like to walk around indoors. 800.852.9506 ExploreBoone.com

past, orchards primarily sold to wholesale buyers, but today many open their farms to visitors. Grandad’s Apples N’ Such, a fourth generation family farm, has greatly increased its agritourism offerings. The farm grows nearly 30 varieties of apples, as well as peaches and pumpkins. After picking a bagful of fresh apples, children enjoy riding the cow train, bouncing on the jump pillow, navigating the corn maze and meeting the barnyard animals. Visitors of all ages indulge in warm apple cider doughnuts, apple turnovers and caramel apples. The barn’s back porch looks out across the Blue Ridge Mountains and is a popular spot for savoring apple treats from the seat of a rocking chair. The stretch of U.S. Highway 64 where Grandad’s is located contains so many orchards that it now carries the nickname Apple Alley. For downtown Hendersonville shoppers, the Henderson County Curb Market overflows with apples from late summer through the fall. The curb market has been in operation since 1924, and all vendors are from Henderson County. In addition to fresh produce, customers shop for flower bouquets; handmade wreaths and dishtowels; and homemade jams, jellies and preserves. For more information about apple season in Hendersonville and a free Crest of the Blue Ridge Orchard Trail map, go to www. VisitHendersonvilleNC.org or call (800) 828-4244.

FALL 2018

Pearson’s Falls and Glen

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earson’s Falls and Glen is a natural attraction in Western North Carolina, hosting more than 20,000 visitors each year. It is located south of Hendersonville off Highway 176, between the towns of Tryon and Saluda. This unique botanical preserve is comprised of 268 acres of rich cove forest, granite, spring-fed streams, and a moderate 1/4 mile trail to a 90 ft. waterfall and more than 350 species of rare wildflowers and plants. Mosses, lichens, shrubs, and a variety of trees reside in this Glen, which is classified as a deciduous climax forest. Pearson’s Falls is a perfect stop when visiting the area. Picnic facilities and can accommodate all types of groups and cyclists. Pearson’s Falls is owned and maintained by The Tryon Garden Club, whose mission and purpose is to foster awareness and appreciation of the natural world by preserving, protecting and treasuring Pearson Falls. Located at 2748 Pearson Falls Road in Saluda NC 28773. More info: pearsonsfallsinfo@gmail.com or (828) 749-3031. www.pearsonsfalls.org


FALL 2018

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Sevierville’s New Fall Driving Tour Has The Best Views Of All: Your Own

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evierville, Tenn. - For a few glorious weeks, autumn crowns the Smoky Mountains with spectacular color. It’s a sight well worth traveling to see – especially when you take a few roads less traveled. This year, consider an alternative scenic drive with plenty of foliage along the Middle Prong of the Little Pigeon River in Sevierville, Tennessee.

Drive

Sevierville’s Middle Prong Fall Driving Tour winds its way through the Smoky Mountain foothills after beginning at the iconic Dolly Parton statue in historic downtown Sevierville. Those driving the tour will

enjoy stops at a Civil War battleground, swinging bridge views, stops at historic churches, and more. Sevierville also offers its English Mountain Fall Driving Tour with stops at a historic cemetery, old grist mill, and a drive through a covered bridge. Both tours can be found online at VisitSevierville.com/fall.

Dine

No fall trip is complete without some hot, southern comfort food. Make a visit to Flapjack’s for their famous Sticky Bun Pancakes, then plan dinner at Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant. Located on a working apple orchard the restaurant serves up fresh apple fritters

Build your fall vacation around Sevierville’s driving tours. Peak fall foliage can typically be enjoyed from mid-October through mid-November.

and nonalcoholic Applewood Julep with each meal. Favorite menu items include the fried chicken and the Chicken Pot Pie (which just happens to be the size of a whole pie) – delicious!

Stay

Fall leaves are the stars of the show – so why not surround yourself with them? Choose a beautifully appointed cabin with

great views – but still only minutes from all the fun. Hidden Mountain Resort and Oak Haven Resort are both great fall lodging options Find a complete list of Sevierville cabins at VisitSevierville.com.

Sept. 8th

Big Foot Festival, Marion

October

Mountain Glory Quilt Show, McDowell Arts Council

Oct. 6th

Marion Monsters & Mayhem, Marion

Oct. 13th

35th Annual Mountain Glory Festival, Marion

Details and other events are online.

888-233-6111

www.blueridgetravelers.com


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Where to Find the Best View in Lynchburg, Virginia

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he seven hills in Lynchburg alone create a gorgeous backdrop for the city—but they’re not the only parts of the landscape that will create an incredible view. From art deco and industrial era architecture to the James River, which borders the city, you won’t be hard pressed to find a great view in Lynchburg: Situated on the 7th floor of The Virginian Hotel, the Skyline Bar is a rooftop bar that offers nearly a 360-degree of the city.

breathtaking view of Lynchburg and the Blue Ridge Mountains. To situate yourself right in the middle of the city, walk down to the Lower Bluffwalk where you’ll find views of the James River and the Blue Ridge Mountains in the distance, with the stunning architecture of The open air vibe, plush lounge Lynchburg at your back. There furniture and delicious cocktails are plenty of eateries and the will transport you instantly to a Craddock Terry Hotel to make sense of relaxation. From the roof, yourself comfortable. you will be able to overlook the James River, the city landscape Plan a Visit to Lynchburg and the mountains in the For more help finding out background. where to go and what to see On the opposite side of the while you’re there, check out city is the Liberty Mountain Trail their itineraries, stop by the System. For more of a rustic Visitor Center or look through experience, you can hike up the their events calendar mountain or throughout the 65 www.LynchburgVirginia.org miles of trail and emerge to a

FALL 2018

The Legend of Tommy Hodges Outdoor Drama At the Cradle of Forestry Oct 19 & 20, 2018

A mystery over time becomes a legend, and a legend grows in the telling . . . It was Halloween night 1906 in the Blue Ridge mountains when one of the students from the Biltmore Forest School disappeared. His name was Tommy Hodges.

Show Times:

Friday, October 19 @6:30pm, 7:45pm, & 9:00pm Saturday, October 20 @6:30pm, 7:45pm, and 9:00pm. Due to the popularity of this event and to make sure that each show begins on time, a limited tickets are available for each showing. www.cradleofforestry.com

Best Pick in Virginia for…

Theatre the Rex rs Market t a d a o oked R • Galax Farme ue Shopping, g the f the Cro Music o Trail State Park ime Jams • Uniq l Events includin r T e cia New Riv egrass and Old s • Annual Spe lu n B io t ly a k ! d e n o We mm entio nd Acco r’s Conv Dining a ous Old Fiddle am World F

888-217-8823 or 276-238-8130 www.visitgalax.com

1150 Motel Drive Woodstock, VA 22664 540-459-7111

www.hamptoninnwoodstock.com

Hampton Inn & Suites Woodstock, VA      

The Best Place to Stay & Play in the Shenandoah Valley! Complimentary Full Hot Breakfast Indoor Pool & Whirlpool Complimentary Wi-Fi State of the Art Fitness Center Business Center


FALL 2018

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Happenings at Peaks of Otter

Milepost 86 on the Blue Ridge Parkway

9/16/18, 5:00 PM

Jefferson At The Peaks Through a partnership with the National Park Service and Poplar Forest, guests will join Mr. Jefferson as he provides his unique perspective on the cultural and natural histories that Sharp Top holds. Event begins at 5:00 PM on the lawn with scenic Abbott Lake and Sharp Top Mountain providing the background. Guests will move inside to the Calvin Rice Room at 6:30 PM for dinner with Mr. Jefferson. Reservations are required; call 866-387-9905.

10/27/18, 8:00 PM

The Universe and You Join NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador, Greg Redfern, for an engaging presentation to learn about the fascinating Universe in which you live, are made from, and are part of. A jacket is recommended, and a flashlight is helpful. Free to all parkway visitors. “The Peaks Under the Stars” - If the sky is clear after the presentation, our guests will move outdoors to the lawn area at the edge of the lake to see the night sky in all its glory while listening to sky lore and fascinating sky facts.

11/17/18, 8:00 PM

JWST-NASA’s Successor to Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Join NASA JPL Solar System Ambassador, Greg Redfern, for an engaging presentation. The 2018 space telescope successor to HST seen up close and personal with the latest pics and information direct from NASA. A jacket is recommended, and a flashlight is helpful. Free to all parkway visitors. “The Peaks Under the Stars” - If the sky is clear after the presentation, our guests will move outdoors to the lawn area at the edge of the lake to see the night sky in all its glory while listening to sky lore and fascinating sky facts.

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Planning to hike or bike along the Blue Ridge Parkway? ay Blue Ridge Par kw

ACTIV ITIES

TRAIL S

PLAN TS & WILDL IFE

BIKIN G

DRIVI NG

FACILITIES & ACTIVITIES - Pg 3 HIKING TRAILS Virginia: Pgs 4, 6 - 14 North Carolina: Pgs 5, 15 - 22

PLANTS & WILDLIFE Pgs 12 - 13 BIKING - Pg 23 DRIVING TIPS Pgs 2 & 24

Stop at one of the 13 Blue Ridge Parkway visitor centers on the parkway and ask for the Outdoor Guide.

PLENTY TO EXPLORE

IN THE ELKIN OUTDOORS

VisitTheYadkinValley.com

ExploreElkin.com PARKWAY MILEPOST 229 SOUTH ON HWY 21


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Adventure like a “Trailsetter” in Virginia’s Blue Ridge

Valley (milepost 120 on the Blue Ridge Parkway). Hit the outdoors along 600 miles of trails while soaking in the autumn hues by foot or by mountain bike in “America’s East Coast Mountain Biking Capital.” As the East Coast Mountain Biking Capital, Virginia’s Blue Ridge is an obvious choice for exhilarating singletrack fun. Grab your gear at Roanoke Mountain Adventures, a full-service outfitter offering shuttles

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ick your next adventure up a level in the beautiful mountains of Virginia’s Blue Ridge like a true trailsetter!

Find a delightful combination of outdoor adventure and scenic views paired with rich local flavors this fall in the Roanoke

Come early, stay late 2018 Valle Country Fair Celebrates 40th Anniversary! - live entertainment all day! Highway 194S, Valle Crucis, NC

Saturday, October 20, 2018 • 9am to 4pm More than 160 top quality art and craft exhibitors from the Southeast. Food Galore – Hot Coffee/ Tea and breakfast items available early, Brunswick Stew, Chili, BBQ, Sausage Factory, Burgers and Dogs, Sweet Potatoes, Baked Goods, Homemade Jams and Jellies, Apple Butter cooked on site in giant copper kettles, Apple Cider pressed on site and more!

Live Music in a beautiful, historic mountain setting from 9am to 4pm. Fun for the whole family – sample pony rides, facepainting, alpaca corral. All profits go to local charities and local emergency relief needs.

Parking $10/car begins at 7:30 am. Handicap parking available. Admission is free! No pets allowed.

Sponsored by Church of the Holy Cross & Valle Crucis Conference Center

www.vallecountryfair.org Contact 828-963-4609 or holy_cross@skybest.com

and guides for an enjoyable experience from start to finish. After thrilling adventures, reward yourself along the Virginia’s Blue Ridge Cheers Trail, a celebration of local craft beverages and a fun way to discover the unique flavors of the region. Choose from a collection of more than 30 breweries, wineries and craft spirits producers throughout the Roanoke Valley.

Find more information on hiking and mountain biking trails, the VBR Cheers Trail, a full list of local cuisine and more at VisitVBR.com. Be sure to also check out events for more ideas to add to your Blue Ridge Day!


FALL 2018

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Fun Things to do Surrounded by

Fall Color

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. You’ll really enjoy the spacious rooms.

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Conference Room Guest Laundry Restaurant on Site Free Wireless Internet 24-Hour Staff Open all year long

Toll Free Reservations: 1-888-372-2501

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hen is peak fall color in the Smokies? Fall colors appear first at the highest elevations and work their way down over a 5-6 week season. So, you should be able to find beautiful color no matter when you visit in the fall (early October into early November) Not only do the Smoky Mountains explode with beautiful color in the fall, the small town of Bryson City, NC itself puts on a festive fall show, too! Colorful fall flowers, corn stalks and haybales decorate the streets mixing with the beautiful fall foliage changes. There are hayrides, a pumpkin patch and a corn maze, ghost stories and legends, harvest festivals, family activities, live music, and scenic rides along the Blue Ridge Parkway and in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Leave the driving to the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad on the

341 N. Main St. Sparta, NC

special “Leaf-Looker” excursions to the Nantahala Gorge. Along with the scenery, adults can also enjoy the Moonshine Car and tastings of these mountain spirits. Families will love the Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express – every Friday-Sunday in October – featuring activities, picking your own pumpkin and meeting Charlie Brown, Lucy & Snoopy. Want something more active? Ride a bike through a canopy of color, walk through the woods to waterfalls, or soar above the trees on a zip line, or paddleboard the river downtown. Feeling lazy? Explore Bryson City, NC with its gorgeous scenery, local bookstores, galleries with working artisans, family friendly museums, craft breweries, restaurants and a surprising variety of lodging options. GreatSmokies.com/Fall-Smokies 828-488-3681

www.AlleghanyInn.com


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See Inside A MOUNTAIN!

Don’t Miss!

North Carolina's Only Caverns!

LINVILLE CAVERNS 19929 US 221 North Marion, NC 800-419-0540 828-756-4171

Located on U.S. 221 between Linville & Marion, NC. - Just 3 1/2 miles south of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Exit Milepost 317.4, turn left on U.S. 221 toward Linville Falls Village & Marion, NC

linvillecaverns.com

FALL 2018

35th Annual Festival of Lights & Luminaires in Dillsboro December 7 & 8 | 14 & 15, 2018 • 5 - 9pm

Follow the lights” to the historic town of Dillsboro, NC once more to experience the spirit of Christmas. On the first Friday and Saturday of December, 7 & 8 and the second Friday and Saturday, 14 & 15 from 5—9pm, there will be over 2500 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 and hearts to the community. Each night shops will stay open way into the night providing free refreshments,musicians and singers performing in individual shops. The sound of hooves will echo through the night with oldfashioned horse and buggy rides. Children can share their wishes with Santa and Mrs. Claus at Santa’s Workshop in Dillsboro’s Town Hall. With retail shops offering a variety of quality arts and crafts, unique gifts, clothing,

gourmet foods and wine, and specialty Christmas items, the festival also provides a unique holiday shopping experience. Free parking and shuttle transportation for the event will be available at Monteith Park each night of the festival. Come on out, bring your sweetheart, bring the family, stroll among the lights illuminating this mountain village and start your holiday full of good cheer. Sing along with carolers, take the children to see Santa Claus at Dillsboro’s Town Hall, and have some hot chocolate or hot cider. All the restaurants will be open, so come for an early family meal and then join in the festivities! Dillsboro is located in the Smoky Mountains of Western North Carolina at the intersection of US Hwys. 19/74 and 441. They’re 45 minutes west of Asheville and just 20 minutes from Franklin, Cherokee and Bryson City, NC.

For more information 1-800-962-1911 or visit www.mountainlovers.com


FALL 2018

www.blueridgedigest.com

Paddle and Pedal

Fall Events

around Lexington

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estled between the Blue Ridge and Alleghany Mountains, Lexington and Rockbridge County, Virginia boast kaleidoscopic color in every direction each autumn. Cyclists will always find a route to ride, but nary a one compares to Route 39, the Appalchian Waters Scenic Byway. Goshen Pass and the Goshen Wildlife Management Area are breathtaking when decorated in shades of orange, red, and yellow. Advanced kayakers are at home dodging the massive boulders of the Pass, which hosts Class IV and V rapids after a long, soaking rain.

The Upper James River Water Trail is impressive in sight and variety. With headwaters in Botetourt County, the James meets the Maury River in Rockbridge County before shooting for the Chesapeake Bay. Outfitters make it easy to get on the water with both maps and gear for the novice and the expert. Take an easy trail ride even if you leave your bike behind. A new kiosk on the Chessie Nature Trail at the Lexington trail head offers a variety of rentals each Saturday. The Chessie Nature Trail is a flat seven-mile rail trail connecting Lexington and Buena Vista while also paralleling the

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Sept. 6-8

Rockbridge Regional Fair & Expo

Sept. 7-8 Mountain Music and Dance Festival at Glen Maury Park

Sept. 20-22 Nothin’ Fancy Bluegrass Festival

Sept. 21 Maury River. It’s the perfect path for running, walking, and cycling. Downtown Lexington is easily walkable. For dinner, score excellent field-to-fork meals and handcrafted beverages at Southern Inn, Rocca, or Haywood’s. For more fall travel ideas in Lexington & Rockbridge County, head to www.LexingtonVirginia.com.

We’ve Been Outsiders Since 1791

Come explore Patrick County, Virginia. Picnics at a covered bridge or along the Blue Ridge Parkway, canoe rides, traditional mountain music, artisan studios, local wineries, bed and breakfasts, camping, hiking, mountain biking, and fishing are just a few of the attractions awaiting you. From the rugged outdoors to 5-star luxury, there is so much to discover in Patrick County. www.visitpatrickcounty.org

Arts of Lexington Block Party

Sept. 22 National Public Lands Day at Natural Bridge State Park

Oct. 6 McCormick Farm Mill Day

Oct. 13 Mountain Day in Buena Vista

Oct. 27 Chessie Trail Fall Half-Marathon & 5K


LEGEND

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. 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. So as not to be disappointed when planning a winter drive, visit: http://go.nps.gov/ parkway-realtime-map

Blue Ridge Parkway Facilities 01 Designates Milepost

New River G National Riv

N Bluefield Pennington Gap

Morristown

40

92

Pigeon Forge

129

Townsend

Tapoco

143

Murphy 129 Blue Ridge

19 76

129

441

19

Andrews

74

Bryson City

Topton

Hot Springs

455

Asheville

Waynesville

Waterrock 443 Knob Graveyard Fields Sylva

Franklin

384

Parkway Visitor Visitor Center Center

26

Mount Pisgah

Hendersonville 64 Cashiers 441 Brevard N Hiwassee C Highlands Sapphire Lake Toxaway GA 76

Crabtree Falls

221

Saluda 9

Blowing Rock 421

Morganton 321 Valdese

18

To Greenville

Columbus

Shelby

NC SC

Gastonia 85

8

Statesville 70

16

To Charlotte

WinstonSalem Clemmons 421

40

Hickory

321

52

601

North Wilkesboro 16 Union Grove

150

108

11

Elkin

Newton

74

Tryon

90

64

Chimney Lake Lure Rock 74A

Flo Hillsville Laurel 58 Fork Fancy Gap

Galax 199 Laurel Springs 221 Sparta 215 Stua West Cumberland Knob way VA ge Park 229 d Jefferson i R Mount 248 Airy N C lue 21 Boone B 261 77 18 Doughton Park Pilot E.B. Jeffress Park 74 291 Mount

Lenoir

40

Black Mtn.

Chr

Wytheville 21

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

330

382

Clayton

To Atlanta

312

Spruce Pine

Craggy Gardens Marion

388 393

411

107

Burnsville

Little Switzerland Weaverville

63

Maggie Valley

Sugar Mountain

Mars Hill

Marshall

40

469

Hayesville

Chatuge Lake Blairsville

NC

Hartford

Cherokee

28

Robbinsville

68

Cosby Gatlinburg

19E

Erwin

TN

70

Newport

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

165 Fontana Village

Cherohala Skyway

Sevierville

Maryville 411

To Chattanooga 411

26

Greeneville

Farragut

75

Elizabethton

Radfor

Pulaski

Mouth of Wilson Independence

58

City

Johnson City Jonesborough

81

Damascus

421 Mountain

81

Knoxville

To Nashville

Bristol

Dublin

77

Marion

Abingdon

11E

75

16

20 km

Kingsport

33

Norris

19

20 mi

0

VA TN

To Lexington

0

4

100

19

Mooresville 77

85

Lexington

52

Salisbury

Kannapolis

52

Concord


To Gettysburg, PA

Martinsburg Charles Town Harpers Ferry 340

Winchester

Leesburg

81

VA

W

V

Front Royal

New Market

33

50

“America’s To Washington, DC Favorite Drive” at your Warrenton fingertips

66

340

Luray

Harrisonburg

250

220

42 11

Waynesboro

64

Gorge ver

220

WV

Buchanan 311

460

Salem Blacksburg Roanoke

rd

121 120

ristiansburg 8

Meadows of Dan art

C

501

FREE DOWNLOAD!

Charlottesville

15

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

522

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

64

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20

To Richmond

24

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Appomattox

Farmville

Altavista Gretna

40

Chatham

MP 324.8

29 58

Danville 360

Eden 220

Reidsville

158

Kernersville

29

High Point 85

40 85 421

220

Asheboro

Snow Camp

Roxboro 49

Burlington

To Durham

58

501

158

87

Greensboro

311

49

Culpeper

29 33

64

Amherst

460

8

64

29

231

29

Lynchburg

Bedford

Martinsville

tain

109

Vinton

112

40

57

0

229

Peaks of Otter

Burnt Chimney 43

58

311

Otter Creek

63

220

Rocky Knob

A

60

Glasgow

460

Smart View

177

n na

Lovingston

Roanoke Mountain

Rocky Mount

221

oyd

106

e Sh

Afton

45

Buena Vista

90

e lin Sky doah

522

Humpback Rocks

Lexington

Natural Bridge

VA

340

Staunton

39

Elkton

D

Monterey

riv Na e tio na lP ar k

211

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

Spruce Pine,  NC


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www.blueridgedigest.com

OPEN YEAR ROUND

Mon-Sat 9am-5pm • Sun Noon-5pm (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, & New Year’s Day)

OPEN YEAR ROUND

Mon-Sat 9am-5pm • Sun Noon-5pm (closed Thanksgiving, Christmas Day, & New Year’s Day)

VISIT OUR NEW MUSEUM Opening June 2018 for detailsMUSEUM VISIT OURCallNEW

VISIT OUR NEW MUSEUM Opening 2018 Grand Opening in July for our newly renovated June museum. Grand Opening in AugustCall for ourdetails newly renovated museum. Stay informed - check out ourforwebsite or like us on Facebook. Stay informed - check out our website! Visit & enjoy our outdoor exhibits and take a walk on a mile museum. and half trail! Opening in Julyexhibits for our newly renovated VisitGrand & enjoy our outdoor Stay byinformed - check out ourTennessee’s website or like us on Facebook. Operated the a Eastern Bandon of Cherokee Nation. ONLY Tribally-Operated Historical Attraction. and take walk a mile and half trail!

enjoy and take a walk on a mile and half trail! HwyVisit 360 •&PO Boxour 69 •outdoor Vonore, exhibits TN 37885 • 423-884-6246 • www.sequoyahmuseum.org Located in the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee on the shores of beautiful Tellico Lake, 37 miles south of downtown Knoxville.

Operated by the Eastern Band of Cherokee Nation. Tennessee’s ONLY Tribally-Operated Historical Attraction.

Hwy 360 • PO Box 69 • Vonore, TN 37885 • 423-884-6246 • www.sequoyahmuseum.org Located in the Great Smoky Mountains of East Tennessee on the shores of beautiful Tellico Lake, 37 miles south of downtown Knoxville.

FALL 2018

35th Annual Mountain Glory Festival October 13th

Y

Main Street, Marion, NC

ou’ll find this quaint, hometown festival to be a refreshing break from big city life. On the second Saturday in October, Marion’s Main Street is transformed into a street fair celebrating mountain culture and the changing seasons. Don’t miss the Mountain Glory Quilters Guild Show at the McDowell Arts Council Gallery. Quilts tell our family stories and you won’t be disappointed by the artistry exhibited in these hand-stitched treasures. The day’s activities include live musical performances, a bestdressed pet contest, children’s play area and more than 100 arts, crafts, food, and business vendors. Details are online at www. mtgloryfestival.com. Area details at www.blueridgetravelers.com. 888-233-6111


21 are two curling lanes beside the rink where visitors can practice their sliding and sweeping skills. While waiting, visitors can roast marshmallows over the fire pit. The Flat Rock Playhouse, the with decorated and illuminate the two large trees official state theater of North storefronts along at the courthouse and the lights Carolina, presents “A Flat Rock Main Street, along Main Street. The following Playhouse Christmas,” Nov. carriage rides, day, on Saturday, Nov. 24, Christmas carols downtown retailers embrace Small 29-Dec. 22. While similar to last and a holiday Business Saturday, offering specials year’s record-breaking show, this year’s edition promises new skating rink. and promotions to encourage takes on favorite numbers. The The Blue supporting local this holiday Playhouse’s downtown location Ridge Mountain season. Main Street’s abundant delights children with “Junie B. in town just south of shops, boutiques and galleries, Jingle Bells Batman Smells!” Based Asheville officially with friendly merchants and welcomes the festive decorations, make holiday on the best-selling book series by Barbara Park, first-grader Junie season on the shopping a joyful experience. B. Jones leaps off the page and Friday after Thanksgiving, Nov. Holiday skating at the brings the true spirit of the season 23, with the Downtown Street Visitor Center returns for a third to the stage, Dec. 6-16. Lighting and Santa’s Arrival. year, Dec. 18-Jan. 1. This year, Festivities begin at the Historic the iceless rink is larger and For a complete list of Home for Courthouse Plaza with live music accommodates more skaters. The the Holidays events, go to and hot cocoa. Santa Claus synthetic surface allows for skating www.VisitHendersonvilleNC.org/ arrives at dusk to flip the switch in any weather. Also new this year Home-For-the-Holidays or call

Make the Holidays Magical

with Home for the Holidays in Hendersonville, NC

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endersonville invites visitors to relish the spirit of the season with this year’s Home for the Holidays events. Beginning in early November and continuing through the New Year, downtown Hendersonville transforms into a winter wonderland, complete

(800) 828-4244.

NATURE’S CALLING. SHENANDOAH NATIONAL PARK IS THE ANSWER. Enjoy 105 miles of scenery along Skyline Drive, 200,000 acres of unspoiled wilderness and endless amounts of inspired recreation – all less than 2 hours from Washington, D.C. At the end of your day, stay overnight in the park at Skyland or Big Meadows Lodge. Ready to heed the call?

Book now at www.goshenandoah.com or call 877-313-2586.

Hospitality by Delaware North. ©2018 DNC Parks & Resorts at Shenandoah, Inc.


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Carolina in the Fall Festival

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arolina in the Fall™ … thinking about it conjures up images of brilliant colors and cooler temperatures. A time when life slows down and nature’s beauty speeds up! With that as a backdrop, Carolina in the Fall™ brings “New Carolina Music” to the foothills of North Carolina. Heart of Folk, LLC is proud to announce a new (but not so new) music and food festival. On the old Courthouse Square in historic downtown Wilkesboro, the Kruger Brothers will host some of North Carolina’s best folk/ roots music

71st A N N I V E R S A R Y

bands. They will be joined by bands from other areas that tip their hats to the rich musical history of Wilkes, the heart of American Folk Music™. A few top bands for 2018 include “The Kruger Brothers, The Steel Wheels, The Secret Sisters, Jim Lauderdale, Front Country, Humming House, The Roosevelts and many more. Destined to become an annual pilgrimage of bluegrass and folk music lovers from around the nation, Carolina in the Fall® will be held the last weekend of September each year. In addition to great music, those that attend

Craft Fair of the

Oct 19-21, 2018

Southern Highlands In its 71st year, the Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands returns to downtown Asheville’s U.S. Cellular Center. Filling both the concourse and arena levels of the venue, makers exhibit a variety of craft ranging from contemporary to traditional in works of clay, wood, metal, glass, fiber, natural materials,

General Adm: $8.00 Children under 12: free

will be treated to some of the State’s best food as each year food trucks from the region will bring their secret recipes to feed the masses and vie for the Carolina in the Fall™ Food Truck Championship trophy. Additionally, local vineyards and regional craft beer breweries will be onsite to provide a taste of the region’s best beverages. Make plans now to be in Wilkes on September 21 and 22 to enjoy the sights and sounds of the season of Carolina in the Fall. For more information, visit carolinainthefall.org.

furniture. While engineering new designs, Steve began to turn wood on a lathe. In 2004, Steve juried into the Southern Highland Craft Guild as a master of woodturning. Today, each of his pieces is spun from a chunk of wet, green wood into a bowl or vessel with a satin finish that is pleasing to the eye. Celebrate his talent with us this year at the Craft Fair of the Southern Highlands!

paper, leather, mixed media, and jewelry. 2018 Feature Maker: Steve Noggle This year’s featured maker is woodworker Steve Noggle from Morganton, NC. A degree in forestry landed him in the Fri thru Sat, 10:00 to 6:00pm Pacific Northwest as a & Sunday, 10 to 5pm timber cruiser. Shortly US Cellular Center, 87 Haywood after, he discovered Street | Downtown Asheville, NC the art of crafting fine, wooden 828.490.7632 or www.craftguild.org

Oconaluftee Indian Village - Poses the question, “Is it actually Cherokee history if it’s still happening?” Today you can transport back to an 18th century village full of authentic stickball demonstrations, dance, staged war reenactments—you name it. If it happened then, it’s happening now. Season ends October 20, 2018 and tickets and times are available at www.CherokeeLivingHistory. com or (866) 554-4557.


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EXPERIENCE THE SIMPLE LIFE in Patrick County, VA

Reynold Homestead, birthplace of R.J. Reynolds.

From the rugged Pinnacles of Dan, where vestiges of the old Appalachian Trail remain, to the pampered luxury of the 5-star resort at Primland, living is easy in Patrick County, Virginia.

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ander along the Blue Ridge Parkway, and explore the county’s mountain villages and forgotten paths. Test your whitewater rafting skills during the Kibler Valley River Run, or travel through Rock Castle Gorge among the remains of a lost community. Stay at Primland and enjoy the resort, world-class golf, refined dining, and outdoor activities on their 12,000 acre retreat. Stop for a picnic at a covered bridge, tap your toes to traditional mountain music along the Crooked Road Music Trail, tour the county’s unique wineries — Stanburn and Villa Appalaccia — or browse local artisan studios

on the ‘Round the Mountain Artisan Trail. You can even satisfy your sweet tooth with a stop at Nancy’s Candy Company with over 2500 square feet of candy, including 45 flavors of fudge, 85 different chocolates, 25 sugarfree chocolates and lots more. Enjoy a sun-drenched round of golf at Gordon Trent Golf Course or take in one of the county’s annual festivals, such as the Virginia Peach Festival, the Virginia Beach Music Festival, or Patrick County’s very own FloydFest. Visit Fairy Stone State Park and relax in the cabins, yurts, or campground while enjoying the 168-acre lake.

Need Travel Help? Visit www.blueridgeparkway.org and start planning your Parkway journey today! Discover activities and points of interest for the entire Blue Ridge Parkway region - including lodging and camping, top-rated attractions, arts, history and more.

Fast times await at the Wood Brothers Racing Museum, and historical moments come alive at Laurel Hill, the birthplace of General J.E.B. Stuart, and the

Whatever your passion, Patrick County’s nearly 500 square miles encompassing the rolling Piedmont and Blue Ridge Highlands promise an outdoor adventure. Get lost and find yourself. Experience the Simple Life in Patrick County, Virginia.

Discover Luray & Page County, VA

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land called Shenandoah, Luray and Page County are home to Shenandoah National Park and Luray Caverns. The fabled Shenandoah River also traverses the gently rolling farmland of this central Shenandoah Valley region. The picturesque, rural setting boasts charming towns with historic sites, loads of antique shops, farmers markets, fairs, and festivals. Outdoor activities abound with canoeing and kayaking on the storied Shenandoah and discovery is available through horseback riding in the George Washington National Forest. The region is a destination for hiking, cycling, racing, and many participatory events along with hundreds of weddings in outdoor venues, area lodges,

inns, and more. Closer to nature, find campsites and camp resorts, with cabins galore; Page County is aptly designated as the Cabin Capital of Virginia. So, from the geological wonders beneath the earth to the vistas of lush farm fields reaching for the foothills in the Blue Ridge Mountains – you really can Choose Your Level when visiting Luray and Page County.

1-888-743-3915 www.VisitLurayPage.com


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www.blueridgedigest.com

Mount Airy’s Autumn Leaves Festival is an October Best Bet

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rafts, local music and fall foliage draw more than 200,000 people each October to the Autumn Leaves Festival in Mount Airy. This year’s event takes place Oct. 12-14 in Mount Airy’s friendly downtown framed by the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Festival director Travis Frye promises a lot of familiar faces among the craft vendors, along with several new ones for the 52nd edition of Surry County’s largest festival. “We still have original vendors who started with us 52 years ago, and some who have been coming for 30 years and some for 20 years,” Frye says. “We’re actually expanding our festival due to demand. We have a waiting list to get in for the craft vendors.” Frye expects the total number of crafter booths and

food booths to be close to 250, an increase of about 50 from previous years. Extra street space has been added to ensure people have ample room to mingle amongst the booths. And as good as the crafters are, they’re just part of the story. More than 40 bands perform across the three days on a stage that has been moved farther up North Main Street, creating more space for those wishing to enjoy the bands. “You can listen to good bluegrass,

gospel and old time string band music that is very influential in this area,” says Frye. “We’re proud to showcase the music because it is a big part of our community. We make sure our local musicians are on display just like our crafters.” All this takes place amid a backdrop of changing fall foliage with the savory aroma of food vendors filling the air. “Food for the soul, we like to call it. Ham biscuits. Collard greens. Cornbread. And those famous ground steak sandwiches that are native to Surry County,” Frye says. This can’t-miss festival has once again been named a Top 20 event in October by the Southeast Tourism Society. Hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday; and noon to 6 p.m. Sunday.

For more information, visit www.AutumnLeavesFestival.com or call 336-786-6116.

FALL 2018

GATLINBURG CRAFTSMEN’S FAIR 42nd year

October 4 – 21, 2018 Daily, 10 am to 6 pm Sundays, 10 am to 5 pm

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he Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair October is a premier holiday shopping destination! A one-stop-shop for everyone on your list. Visit more than 180 of the finest craftspeople from all over the United States, held in the convention center, located at traffic light #8 in downtown Gatlinburg. Watch as they demonstrate their skill! Craftsmen’s offers exceptional arts and crafts made by local craftsmen as well as talented artisans from around the country. Many artists make holiday-themed items and unique gifts for the upcoming season. Finish your holiday shopping early! Our craftsmen offer a wide array of one-of-akind gifts for everyone on your list. Admission for adults is $7; children 12 and under are admitted free. More information: www.craftsmenfair.com


FALL 2018

www.blueridgedigest.com

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Scenic Byway Drives for Leaf Peeping Season in the Boone Area bridge in Deep Gap. Views along the way include those of Snake Mountain and Elk Knob, part of the Amphibolite Range. Mission Crossing – (17 miles) If you follow 421 N. through Boone and toward Vilas, you will come to the intersection with N.C. 194 S., near the Vilas Post Office. Turn onto 194 and head toward Valle Crucis, N.C.’s first Rural Historic District and the home of the Original Mast General Store.

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inding the perfect views to catch peak foliage in the Boone Area is easy. These scenic drives below will help you choose the best places to see nature’s display. Blue Ridge Parkway -- Along “America’s Favorite Drive” in N.C.’s northern Blue Ridge Mountains, you’ll experience both the region’s early history as

well as its scenic beauty. From E. B. Jeffress Park (milepost 272) to Linville Falls Recreation Area (milepost 316) and beyond, the North Carolina Scenic Byways U.S. 421 (Doc & Merle Watson Highway) – (8 miles) This section of Highway 421 spans from the Blue Ridge Parkway

Little Parkway (18 miles) The old Yonahlossee Trail, as it was once called, parallels the Blue Ridge Parkway between Linville and Blowing Rock. Nearby features include Linville Falls, Grandfather

Mountain State Park, the Linn Cove Viaduct, historic Westglow Resort, and Moses Cone Estate. New River Valley Byway (32 miles) From Hwy. 421 just east of downtown Boone, turn onto Hwy. 194 N. Follow 194 through the New River Valley to the communities of Meat Camp and Todd. Continue to follow 194 to Hwy. 221 and the towns of West Jefferson and Jefferson, settled in 1803 and named for then President Thomas Jefferson. Follow any one of these, or all of them, and you are guaranteed to see glorious fall color along the way. Fall leaf-changing season in Boone is generally October 5th through the 25th, with peak color occurring October 10-20. Highest elevations near Grandfather Mountain and near Elk Knob change first. Weekdays are good for less crowded times.

41st Annual

Woolly

Worm Festival

Banner Elk, NC The Annual Woolly Worm Festival is back in business this fall October 20th - 21st 2018 in downtown Banner Elk. Annually attended by 20,000 and is now the Official Woolly Worm Festival for the State of North Carolina. Up to 1,000 worm racers vie for the top position and the honor of having their worm predict the upcoming winter weather at the festival’s famous woolly worm races. www.woollyworm.com or call for more info: 828-898-5605.

Craft & Draft |

October 20

Highlan ders Festival Octobe r8

Radford’s Visitors Center (located inside Glencoe Musuem)

600 Unruh Drive • Radford, VA

www.VisitRadford.com

SUP, Tube & Kayak Rentals in Bisset Park


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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) 686-3121. 2708 Hwy 70E, Swannanoa, NC 28778. www.ashevilleeastkoa.com. 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. www.ashevillekoa.com 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 www.ashevillebearcreek.com. Mast Store – Located at 15 Biltmore Ave., Downtown Asheville. Restored to its 1940s heyday, this store features housewares, jams & jellies, camping gear, shoes & boots, clothing, and over 500 old-fashioned candy favorites. www.MastStore.com. 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. Shoji Spa & Lodge - Relax at Asheville’s only outdoor hot tub spa. Reap the benefits of the cold plunge, unwind in our sauna and rest in the Lodge. Specializing in couples massage. 2500 ft. above stress level. www.shojiretreats.com. By appt. only. (828) 299-0999.

BALSAM, NC Balsam Mountain Inn .5 mi. from pkwy mp 443 at Balsam Gap. Historic inn, gracious dining, porches, 50 rms. www.balsaminn.net 800-224-9498

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. www.smoketreelodge.com

BLOWING ROCK, NC Alpine Village Inn - 297 Sunset Dr. Quaint cozy rooms & suites in the heart of town. AC, CCTV, & phones, Wi-Fi complimentary. Some fireplaces & Jacuzzi. Pet friendly rooms. www.alpine-village-inn.com (828) 295-7206. 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. www.hemlockinn.net. Jenkins Rentals - The finest rental homes, cabins and condos in the Blowing Rock area. Hot tubs & Mtn vews available. (800) 438-7803. www.jenkinsrentals.com. Mystery Hill. - 129 Mystery Hill Ln, Blowing Rock, NC 28605. Family fun center. Feel the strange pull. Hall of Mystery artifacts. Museum open all year. 828-263-0507. info@mysteryhill-NC.com Village Inns of Blowing RockNo Smoking, Wi-Fi/Breakfast. Suites/Cottages/Rooms. Some Pet Friendly Rooms. (828) 295-3001

Hidden Valley Motel- Birds, blooms and butterflies in the Foscoe Valley. Hwy 105 south between Boone and Banner Elk. Call 828/963-4372. www.hiddenvalleymotel.com or email: jim@hiddenvalleymotel.com. 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 – Located 630 W King St, Downtown Boone. Built in 1913/1917, you’ll find most everything you need for life: clothing, footwear, trail & travel gear, housewares, gifts, & old-fashioned candy. www.MastStore.com. 828-262-0000 NC High Country Host Visitor Center- 6370 US HWY 321 South Blowing Rock, NC 28605; (800) 438-7500 www.mountainsofnc.com

BURNSVILLE, NC Alpine Village Resort - 1 & 2 bedroom condos. Great views. Tennis, heated pool/summer, cable TV, special golf fees. 3 miles west of Parkway, exit Buck Creek Gap Hwy. 80. No pets. 828/675-4103.

CHEROKEE, NC Oconaluftee Indian Village - Share the rich history & traditions of the Cherokee at this replica of a Cherokee community of the 1750s. May thru Oct. www.cherokeehistorical.org/village.html

Be sure to tell them you saw it in

THE DIGEST!

Be sure to tell them you saw it in THE DIGEST! CHIMNEY ROCK, NC

Chimney Rock at Chimney Rock State Park – 40 min. SE of Asheville, exit milepost 384.7. Come for the views. Discover infinite possibilities. Spectacular wildflowers, hiking, rock climbing instruction, special events, workshops and more! 26-story elevator inside mountain. Pet friendly. Admission rates: $15 Adults, $7 Youth ages 5-15, 4 and under free.Open all year. Open daily 8:30am - 5:30pm. Live it up! 800-277-9611 chimneyrockpark.com

HENDERSONVILLE, NC Mast Store – Located 527 N Main St, Downtown Hendersonville. Built in 1905, this store embodies the essence of the era and is packed with clothing, shoes & boots, camping gear, country gourmet foods, & candy. www.MastStore.com. 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. www.visithendersonvillenc.org

LAUREL SPRINGS, NC Thistle Meadow Winery - Stop for wine tasting - Exit at Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 248. 3 miles to winery on NC 18. 800-233-1505. Gas nearby. www.thistlemeadowwinery.com

Need Travel Help?

BOONE, NC

Visit www.blueridgeparkway.org and start planning your

Foscoe Rentals - Cabins, Condos and Vacation homes centrally located to Boone, Banner Elk and Blowing Rock. (800) 723-7341. www.foscoerentals.com

Parkway journey today! Discover activities and points of interest for the entire Blue Ridge Parkway region - including lodging and camping, top-rated attractions, arts, history & more.


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Be sure to tell them you saw it in THE DIGEST!

Mountain Lodging Food Fun LINVILLE, NC Grandfather Mountain - Grandfather’s lofty heights offer guests opportunities for rejuvenation, excitement and family memories in a natural haven that 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 the Linville exit at Milepost 305 to U.S. 221 South. Open daily, 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. $20 adult; $18 senior 60+; $9 child 4-12; under 4 free. www.grandfather.com | (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. www.linvillecaverns.com. Linville Falls Lodge & Cottages BRP Milepost 317.4, US 221S 1 mile to Rt. 183, left. Restaurant (ABC permit), Walk to falls & gorge. www.linvillefallslodge.com (800) 634-4421.

LITTLE SWITZERLAND, NC Emerald Village - Real mines, mine tours, & gem mining. Other free displays: railroad, music museum, wildlife. MP334. 828-765-6463.   www.emeraldvillage.com Switzerland Cafe & General Store MP 334 1/4 mile of the Parkway. Lunch and weekend dinners. Souvenirs and picnic items. Call 828-765-5289. www.switzerlandcafe.com 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) 654-4026. www.switzerlandinn.com

MAGGIE VALLEY, NC Boyd Mountain Log Cabins Secluded 130 acres near Maggie Valley, 7 Authentic cabins, fireplaces, AC, cable, WIFI. Choose n cut Christmas tree farm, trout fishing, hiking. (828) 926-1575. www.boydmountain.com Haywood County Hotel & Motel Assoc.-Maggie Valley,Waynesville,Lake Junaluska. Quality lodging & dining within minutes of 4 BRP exits, MP 420-450. All accommodations adhere to Quality Standards. See us @www.maggievalley.travel. 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.  www.jonathancreekinn.com

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: www.AlleghanyInn.com . see ad page 5 Thistle Meadow Winery - Stop for wine tasting - exit at Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 248. 3 miles to winery on NC18.(800) 233-1505. gas nearby. www.thistlemeadowwinery.com

Bear Den Campground - On the Blue Ridge Parkway at MP 324.8. Complete facilities, serving the south for over 41 years. www.bear-den.com (828) 765-2888. Scenic beauty. see ad page 10. 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. 828-7659559. www.peakmountaincottages.com

SPRUCE PINE, NC

VALLE CRUCIS, NC

Bear Den Creekside Cabins On the Blue Ridge Parkway at MP 324.8. All amenities, jacuzzis, decks, fireplaces. For 2 to 10. (828) 765-2888.www.bear-den.com Res. recmd. See ad page 10.

Mast General Store & Annex – Est. 1883 & listed on the National Register of Historic Places, this authentic general store in rural Valle Crucis features clothing, camping gear, shoes & boots, housewares, unique gifts, and over 500 old-fashioned candies. Visit our other historic locations in NC, SC, & TN. www.MastStore.com.

Be sure to tell them you saw it in THE DIGEST!

Jump in at Smith Mountain Lake.

McDOWELL COUNTY, 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.

NEWLAND, NC Secluded Valley RV Campground - 8 miles North Spruce Pine on 19E. 5 miles from Blue Ridge Parkway. 30 & 50 amp full hookups, children & pets welcome, level & spacious sites. (828) 765-4810. www.secludedvalleyrvcampground.com.

Be sure to tell them you saw it in

THE DIGEST!

Located just off the Blue Ridge Parkway! Also be sure to check out the Bedford Wine Trail, Historic Centertown, and the Bedford Artisan Trail.

877-HI-PEAKS • VisitBedford.com

Stay in the mountains, by the water, or somewhere in between!

Follow in the footsteps of Thomas Jefferson at Poplar Forest. @VisitBedfordVA

Discover 360-degree views at Sharp Top, Peaks of Otter.

Honor heroes at the National D-Day Memorial.

Bedford Area Welcome Center & Tourism 816 Burks Hill Road, Bedford, VA 24523


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Mountain Lodging Food Fun WAYNESVILLE, NC Mast Store – Located 63 N Main St, Downtown Waynesville. Built in 1930s and filled with everything you’d expect in a general store – clothing, shoes, cast iron, candy, and camping gear. 828-452-2101 www.MastStore.com.

TENNESSEE GATLINBURG, TN Ski Mountain Chalet & Condo Rentals - 1-6 bedroom units, hot tubs, jacuzzis, pool tables, kitchens, fireplaces, privacy. (800) 824-4077. www.skimtnchalets.com

VIRGINIA BEDFORD, VA Peaks of Otter Winery & Orchards - 2122 Sheep Creek Rd, 24523. MP 86. Fruit wine, fruit, jams, jellies, free tastings. Vacation rentl house. 540586-3707. www.iwineu.com or www.elmosrest.com Gross’ Orchard & Apple Valley Homeplace - Vacation Home Rental. Open year round. $75 per couple per night. Mountain grown fruit & produce. Bedford, VA. Rt. 43 in Apple 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) 823-5202. www.montfairresortfarm.com.

FANCY GAP, VA

Skyland Lakes Golf Club - Right on Parkway at milepost 202.2. New 18 hole public course. Beautiful scenery. Motel & golf packages available. (276) 728-4923.

Be sure to tell them you saw it in THE DIGEST!

FISHERSVILLE, VA

HARRISONBURG, VA

ROANOKE, VA

Antique Expo - 400 dealers exhibiting in halls, barns, tents & outside twice yearly. Oct. 12-14, 2018 & May 17-19, 2019. Augusta Expoland. I-64, exit 91. (434) 847-8242. www.heritagepromotions.net

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. www.shenandoah.org/villageinn

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. visitvablueridge.com

FLOYD, VA Blue Ridge Restaurant, Inc. - E. Main St., Floyd, VA (540) 745-2147. For good home-style cooking try our daily specials. We are open early with gravy biscuits, hot cakes, country ham, and eggs every day. Chantilly Farm Campground. 2697 Franklin Pike SE. RV sites: electric, water, sewer, tent camping w/amenities. WiFi, ice, ATM. chantillyfarm.com. 540-808 -4984 Floyd County Tourism 109 East Main St. Floyd, VA 24091 Mountain town with unique music, arts, outdoor fun! info@visitfloydva.com www.VisitFloydVA.com 540-239-8509 Floyd Country Store: Famous venue for Heritage Appalachian music every weekend. Store and cafe open all week. www.floydcountrystore.com Floyd Lodging Association A community of local lodging facilities working together to accommodate your unique needs. www.floydvirginialodging.com Floyd Visitors Center 109 E. Main St., Floyd, VA 24091 Mountain town with unique music, arts, outdoor fun! 540-745-4407 www.VisitFloydVA.com Hotel Floyd - 120 Wilson St, Floyd, VA. (540) 745-6080. www.hotelFloyd.com. Unique lodging off MP165 with themed rooms and located downtown Floyd. Don’t miss visiting this unique town and hotel!

GROTTOES, VA

Grand Caverns - 5 Grand Caverns Dr, Grottoes, VA, America’s oldest continuously operated show cave. Nature’s handiwork & gifts. 888430-CAVE. www.grandcaverns.com

LOVE, VA. Royal Oaks - Cabins, chalets, store, gifts, deli, weddings. Near MP16 on parkway. Upscale lodging, hot tubs, fireplaces, equipped kit, bedding/linens. Beautiful views atop the BR Mtns. www.vacabins.com. 540-943-7625.

LURAY, VA. Allstar Lodging - Unique Cabins and Vacation rentals. Pools, Hot tubs, frplc, kitch, riverfront/mountains, hiking, canoeing, fishing in Shenandoah Valley. 866-780-7827. www.allstarlodging.com.

MEADOWS OF DAN, VA Primland Resort - 2000 Busted Rock Road. Resort Lodge, Fairway Cottages, Mountain Homes. Spectacular views. Golf. Spa. Dining, Outdoor activities. 276.222.3800 www.primland.com

MONTEBELLO, VA Montebello Resort – Exit Milepost 27, Rt 56E, 3 miles. Cabins, Campground, Country Store & Trout Ponds. 540-377-2650 www.MontebelloVA.com.

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 www.visitradford.com.

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.

WAYNESBORO, VA Cabin Creekwood-  2 miles from Parkway MP 13.6. Year-round, quiet, secluded.Fully furnished affordable mtn cabins (888) 942-2246. www.cabincreekwood.com.

BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY INFO: POSSIBLE ROAD CLOSURES ON THE BLUE RIDGE PARKWAY A real-time road closure map for the entire Parkway is available at: www.nps.gov/blri/planyourvisit/roadclosures.htm


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Hot Works

3rd Asheville Fine Art Show™ October 27 & 28, 2018

New Location! Outdoors at Pack Square Park, downtown Asheville, NC

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he Asheville Fine Art Show presented by HotWorks.org focuses on visual arts, cultural diversity, community enrichment, and fostering art education among youth. Hot Works shows are juried by art professionals with criteria for judging based on originality, technique/execution and booth appearance. Institute for the Arts & Association, the associated 501c3 non-profit features a Youth Art Competition. Young Artists in grades K-8 or ages 5-13 are encouraged to enter his/her art that is publicly displayed in the art show the entire weekend. There is $250 in youth art

REAL MINES!

Little Switzerland, NC

Gem Mining, Mine Tours, & MORE! OPEN EVERY DAY THROUGH NOVEMBER 4th 331 McKinney Mine Road Little Switzerland, NC 28749

awards as students begin to learn the rules and are exposed to the entrepreneurship opportunity of doing art shows for a living.

828-765-6463

www.emeraldvillage.com

More information: 941-755-3088 or cell 248-762-2462. www.hotworks.org

The Black MountainSwannanoa, NC Visitor Center is 100 years old this year!

REAL FUN!

Voted #1

Gem Mine in the Mountains by Blue Ridge Country!

NC Mining Museum | The Gemstone Mine | Mineral Collecting Black Light Mine Tour | Gold Panning | Crabtree Emerald Mine

Aficionados and artisans find their muse in Highlands, NC

P As part of the Town's 125th year Anniversary there will be a "Birthday Party Open House" for the building on Sunday October 28, 2018. While you are there, enjoy the gorgeous foliage and mountain scenery. Hiking and biking trails abound within minutes of the Red Rocker!

eople say something changes in you once you’ve experienced Highlands — a town perched atop an ancient rainforest plateau more than 4,000 feet above sea level. Wellness sojourners since the 1800s and second-home owners seeking a lifestyle of unaffected luxury have shaped a culture with an unusual blend of urbane refinement and down-home neighborliness. Aficionados and artisans of every genre — including acclaimed chefs — find their muse here, giving rise to a main-street social scene filled with interactive art experiences, live music performances, carefully curated shopping, award-winning dining and world-renowned accommodations. A widely-studied ecological wonder, the Highlands Plateau teems with rare species of flora and fauna. Its headwaters feed lakes, rivers and waterfalls, creating a natural playground for those that live and visit here. For more information: visitor@highlandschamber.org


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www.blueridgedigest.com

FALL 2018

Elkin Festival Features Gourd-geous Array of Pumpkins

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ig pumpkins, small pumpkins, short pumpkins, tall pumpkins. They’re all on display during the 22nd annual Yadkin Valley Pumpkin Festival. The festival takes place Saturday, Sept. 22, in downtown Elkin, North Carolina. The highlight is the Great Pumpkin Weigh Off, in which growers from across the region bring their largest pumpkins to compete for a $1,000 first-place prize. Last year’s winner tipped the scales at 1,328 pounds, while the 2014 winner was a whopping 1,404 pounds. “This is one of the most famous pumpkin competitions on the East Coast,” says festival organizer Myra Cook of the Yadkin Valley

Chamber of Commerce. “It’s hard to describe the size of these pumpkins. They sit on pallets in the back of pickup trucks and they’re so big they overflow the beds of the trucks.” The 9 a.m. weigh off is followed by a full slate of activities. The fun includes: carnival rides for children, arts and crafts vendors, antique vendors, pumpkin-themed food, pumpkin-themed drinks and pumpkin-themed games. There are plenty of orange gourds to be explored, while folks may also enter a rubber duck or turtle in the Duck & Turtle Regatta race on the Yadkin River. Attendees are encouraged to arrive prior to the 9 a.m. weigh

off, which is sanctioned by an association known as the Great Pumpkin Commonwealth. Cash prizes are awarded for the 10 largest pumpkins, starting at $1,000 for first and decreasing to $50 for 10th place.

Hours for the Yadkin Valley Pumpkin Festival are 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and there is no charge for admission. The event is sponsored by the Yadkin Valley Chamber. For more info, call (336) 526-1111, or visit: www.YadkinValley.org

Since 1910, the Switzerland Inn has delighted visitors with its

fantastic mountain views and easy access to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Located at Mile Post 334, between Mt. Mitchell (the tallest peak east of the Rockies) and Grandfather Mountain (with the mile-high swinging bridge), the Inn features 72 mountain-view rooms, private chalets, a honeymoon cottage and the Diamondback Motorcycle Lodge with covered parking. Our amenities include fabulous dining, two patio bars, tennis courts, unique shopping, swimming pool and outdoor hot tubs – just to name a few.

Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner, our renowned Chalet

Restaurant overlooks a panoramic view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Our Friday Night Fresh Seafood and Prime Rib Buffet is sold-out popular.

Make Switzerland Inn your base camp to experience

the (226A) and the Blue Ridge Parkway.

800-654-4026 • 828-765-2153 www.SwitzerlandInn.com $10 off any room rental, Monday-Thursday, with this ad. Not valid with other offers.


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Horizon Bist ro -

A Little Uptown In Downtown Sparta

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hen he took over ownership of Sparta’s Mustard Seed Café last March, Chef Garrison Wagoner was already known to most patrons as an example of home-grown talent. His culinary potential was recognized in 6th grade when he won the school’s Iron Chef competition with his grandmother’s chocolate cake recipe. By his early 20’s, Garrison was an aspiring young chef working at New York’s Westchester Country Club. When he heard the Sparta restaurant was for sale, he left New York behind and returned home. Chef Garrison is now owner of Horizon Bistro and developing his vision for an upscale dining atmosphere in his hometown. Wagoner wanted to bring variety to the growing Sparta restaurant scene, so he changedup the interior, built a stage, and reached out to Alleghany Writers, offering the Bistro stage for weekend afternoon performances. Now AW organizes programs for the Bistro stage and hosts local talent, regional talent, and national best sellers on first Saturdays at 3pm. These monthly events include writers, poets, and storytellers.

There is no cover and a dessert menu is available. “It’s a little uptown in downtown Sparta,” said Chef Garrison. About the Horizon Bistro The Horizon Bistro is located at 38 S. Main Street in the Historic Smithey Building. Parking on Main Street or in the large lot at the rear entrance. The Bistro serves lunch 7-days a week, 11am – 4pm. The menu features handmade sandwiches, salads, soups, desserts, and a lunch special. Sunday brunch, 11am – 2pm. Horizon is open for dinner first Friday’s for Music on Main and first Saturday afternoons for literary events on the Bistro stage. Their “Bistro to Go” service has the order ready when you arrive or delivered to your doorstep! 336-372-7444.

75 Top Hikes from the Smokies to the North Carolina High Country www.romanticasheville.com/hiking


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www.blueridgedigest.com

First Lady Museum Celebrates WWI Centennial with Unique Dinner Series

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The Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace Museum is located at 145 E. Main Street, Wytheville, VA 24382, and is open to the public Tuesday - Friday 10-4, Saturday 10-2. It currently has two exhibitions on display on the Great War.

WNC Pottery Festival Nov. 3 in Dillsboro, NC

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Floyd VA

Happenings Fall 2018  Located atop the magnificent Blue Ridge Plateau in Southwest Virginia, Floyd is a haven of natural beauty renowned for our hospitality and for a vibrant culture of music, arts, outdoor recreation and local foods, wine and spirits. With near 40 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway, Floyd is an incredible destination to experience the vibrant fall colors.

o honor the centennial of World War I, the Edith Bolling Wilson Birthplace Museum hosted a series of unique dining experiences throughout the summer and fall. The “Allied Dinner Series” features specialty-prepared cuisine and a brief presentation on an allied nation during World War I. The fall dinner series features France on September 22nd, and Italy on October 27th. The events will take place from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Bolling Wilson Hotel in Downtown Wytheville. Tickets can be purchased at www. edithbollingwilson.org/allied Born and raised in Wytheville, Virginia, Edith Bolling Galt Wilson served as First Lady to President Woodrow Wilson from 1915-1921. During her role as First Lady, Mrs. Wilson made multiple contributions to the war effort by rationing goods, volunteering, and placing a flock of sheep on the White House lawn in an effort to alleviate groundskeepers for war-time duties. The wool, named “White House Wool”, was auctioned and raised nearly $100,000 for the American Red Cross war effort. Mrs. Wilson frequently travelled abroad with her husband, President Wilson, as he lobbied for world peace. She attended the Paris Peace Conferences with Wilson and other leaders of the Allied Nations.

he annual WNC Pottery Festival returns to Dillsboro on Saturday, Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Cost is $5. The festival showcases the work of more than 40 master potters from 13 states. A variety of clay art styles will be presented. Pre-show events – including the Clay Olympics – will be held on Friday, Nov.

FALL 2018

2. The event is juried and the lineup of potters is impressive. $5 ticket includes a chance in a raffle; kids under 12 admitted free. For more information, call (828) 631-5100 or (828) 5863601, e-mail wncpotteryfest@ gmail.com, or visit www. wncpotteryfestival.com.

Floyd has many regular happenings throughout the fall with music every Thursday through Sunday. Floyd Country Store weekly hosts Friday Night Jamboree, Saturday afternoon American Afternoon music and Sunday music jams. Throughout the year, Wildwood Farm General Store, an affiliate Crooked Road site, has bluegrass music every Saturday night and music jams 1st & 3rd Sunday afternoons of the month. Dogtown Roadhouse downtown offers music regularly Friday through Sunday. Chateau Morrisette Winery hosts Sunday Sound at the courtyard, free music on Sundays through September. There is also music at Mabry Mill on the BRP on Sunday afternoons. Music in the Mountains Concert series is held every Thursday evening in September and October at the Hotel Floyd Pavilion. For more info and details: www.VisitFloydVA.com or contact the Floyd Visitor Center 540-745-4407.


FALL 2018

www.blueridgedigest.com

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Hike, Shop, and paddle this Fall in Front Royal, VA

Welcome to Front Royal, Virginia the northern Gateway to Shenandoah National Park and the Canoe Capital of Virginia. Steeped in rich history and natural beauty this thriving community boasts attractions and amenities for everyone. The Blue Ridge Mountains meet the Shenandoah River in Front Royal beckoning

Bis set Pa

RADFORD

you to discover miles of parkland, hiking trails, electrifying waterfalls and wildlife viewing. Outfitters rent canoes, kayaks, rafts, and tubes for floating down the Shenandoah, its beauty celebrated in song. Taste and tour at World-class Wineries, and play the greens at five award-winning Golf destinations. Live, Shop, Play and Visit Historic Downtown Front Royal located just one mile north of Shenandoah National Park. Highlights include museums, antiques, fine art, estate jewelry, live music and do-it-yourself crafts. Enjoy an eclectic mix of restaurants and relax in the Village Commons, a favorite spot for events, concerts and meeting friends. Take a rest from your adventures at one of our many bed & breakfasts, motels or campgrounds.

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Oct. 6, 2018 Highland Games Directed by Chad Clark Scots-Irish Clans and Families Children’s Activities, Food and Crafts Celtic Music by

www.radford.edu/festival Questions about the festival may be directed to 540-831-6255 A partnership between

540-635-5788 • www.discoverfrontroyal.com

Forget your cares...

… and return to a place and time you thought had passed. Alleghany County and Sparta NC are home to the Blue Ridge Mountain community where Parkway construction began. And it is still home to a relaxed, rural pace of life that retains much of the unspoiled beauty that it shares with the famous scenic byway. With two state parks, New River and Stone Mountain, plus Doughton Park, the Parkway’s largest developed recreation area, camping, picnicking, hiking, fishing and bicycling opportunities abound. The New River offers canoeing, tubing, kayaking and fishing and is a welcome respite from summer heat. Get schooled in mountain music at the Alleghany Jubilee’s weekly barn dance (alleghanyjubilee.com), the Monday jam at Crouse Park and at the big Fiddlers Convention (alleghanyfiddlersconvention.com). Events like the Blue Ridge Mountain Fair and Mountain Heritage Festival (Sparta-NC.com/heritage) highlight the area’s craft heritage. Enjoy down-home fun at distinctively local pastimes, such as the demolition derby, and mud slings. Look for other upcoming events at CoolSparta.com.

Sparta, NC / Alleghany County

The community offers motels, bed and breakfast inns and vacation cabins to make your stay special. And there’s no better sleeping than snuggled under covers during cool mountain nights. When you visit, stop by the Visitors Center, 58 S. Main St., just 7 miles south of the US 21/ Parkway intersection at Mile Post 229.6. Our welcome mat is always out and we’ll make sure you don’t miss a thing.

MP 229.6 - 58 S. Main St. • Sparta, NC • 800-372-5473 • Cool Sparta.com


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Celebrate Scots Irish Heritage in Radford, VA bands and the Braveheart 5K. Celtic band Tuatha Dea, creates original Celtic music and is headlining the 2018 Highlanders Festival. Bisset Park is transformed by artists, craftspeople and community organizations into Follow the skirl of bagpipes and an open-air forum. make your way through Virginia’s Start your holiday scenic roads to Bisset Park on shopping early October 6, 2018 for the 22nd or treat yourself Radford Highlanders Festival. to something nice from one of the elebrate Scots Irish many vendors, heritage and experience which offer a the excitement and fun diverse and exciting of live Celtic and Appalachian selection of clothing, music, heavyweight games, accessories, jewelry and crafts. Scottish clans, entertainers, The Radford Highlanders Festival children’s games, massed

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is a daylong feast, with a variety something for everyone, all while of foods offered by vendors. celebrating Virginia’s Scots-Irish Enjoy authentic Scottish fare or ancestry. classic festival food and marvel The Radford Highlanders at the power Festival is a partnership between of the athletes Radford University and the City participating of Radford. To learn more, go in the authentic to www.radford.edu/festival or heavyweight search “Radford Highlanders games, featuring Festival” on Facebook. the infamous Registration for the Braveheart caber toss. 5K can be found on Radford www.ItsYourRace.com. is located in the beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Just 10 minutes from Exit 109 off Interstate 81, the Radford Highlanders Festival has

STAY AT THE LODGE. It’s easy to see what matters most from these heights. Ancient peaks. Breathtaking views. And memories to last a lifetime. Peaks of Otter Lodge guests will find it all, from the majestic Sharp Top Mountain, to scenic Abbott Lake and the Blue Ridge Parkway – America’s favorite drive. Book your reservation at PeaksOfOtter.com or call 888-454-7711. Hospitality by Delaware North, Inc. ©2018. DNC Parks & Resorts at Peaks of Otter Lodge.


ULTIMATE LUXURY JUST MINUTES AWAY

ASHEVILLE | GAFFNEY | KANNAPOLIS


visitwytheville.com 1-877-347-8307

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THE BLUE RIDGE DIGEST = FALL 2018  

Compilation of fun things to do in the blue ridge mountains.

THE BLUE RIDGE DIGEST = FALL 2018  

Compilation of fun things to do in the blue ridge mountains.

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