Friday, December 15, 2017

Ski NC - The Slopes are OPEN and Conditions are Great for Winter Sports

North Carolina Ski Resorts and Areas will ALL be open this weekend with great conditions from natural and man made snow. Check the individual websites for specific times and special events.

Slope and Resort reports as of 12-15-2017:

Appalachian Ski Mountain is  OPEN for the 2017-18 Season   Skiing 7 trails with 5 lifts on a base of 24-36 inches.   Ice Skating now open.   December 24 - Skiing with Santa; December 25 - Christmas Day SkiingASM will be open until Midnight every Friday and Saturday Night from December 9 - March 17.  1 PM - 10 PM.  Ski or Ride for only $10 on the first Sunday of each month (Dec 3, Jan 7, Feb 4, Mar 4) 1/2 night session is from 7:30 – 10 PM, purchase online and get an extra hour FREE - 6:30-10PM.

Beech Mountain Ski Resort is OPEN for the 2017-18 Season   Skiing 12 trails with 5 lifts on a base of 16 - 46 inches.  December 16, 17 - Santa visits Beech Mountain; Ongoing - Music and events at Beech Tree Bar and Grille and Beech Mountain Brewery.


Cataloochee Ski Area is  OPEN for the 2017-18 Season.  Skiing 16 slopes with 4 lifts on a base of 28 - 52 inches from 9 AM to 4:30 PM with night skiing beginning 12/16.  December 25 - Christmas Day Skiing with Santa 1 PM - 10 PM.

Sapphire Valley Ski
Area is   OPEN for the 2017-18 Season. Opening Day December 16. 
Beginner and Training slope 29 - 49 inches; Main Slope 29 - 51 inches. Frozen Falls Tube Park: 30 - 42 inches.

Sugar Mountain Ski Resort
  is OPEN for the 2017-18 Season 
Skiing 12 slopes with 4 lifts on a base of 16 - 48 inches for day and evening sessions. 12/8 - Pre-Season Ski Clinic; 12/8 - SugarFest. Ice skating is open with sessions at 10am, 12pm, 2pm, and 4pm. Tubing is open. Live music weekends at the All Decked Out Grill.


  Wolf Ridge Ski Resort  is OPEN for the 2017-18 Season   Skiing 10 slopes with 2 lifts on an average base of 50 inches. Tube Run is OPEN 9.00 AM to 10.00 PM.

Get links for ALL NC Ski Resorts and Ski Areas on our 

Monday, December 11, 2017

What's Happening this week on The Blue Ridge Music Trails

The Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina is your guide to the tradition music of the North Carolina mountains and foothills. The mission and vision of the BRMT is "to create an environment in Western North Carolina where the rich music traditions of the region are sustained and utilized in appropriate ways to improve the lives of residents; where traditional musicians thrive and feel supported in their creative lives; where visitors and residents alike can appreciate and enjoy the richness of the music; and where youth are provided with first hand traditional music experiences that spark interest and the music of the region".

This week along the Blue Ridge Music Trails:

December 12, 2017:
Cecil Sharp Historic Photographs Exhibit
Blowing Rock Art & History Museum - Blowing Rock, NC

David Holt: Photos, Music and Stories Exhibit
The Earl Scruggs Center: Music and Stories from the American South - Shelby, NC

Music N'All at the Barn
The Barn - Eden, NC

Folk School Tuesday Night Contra and Square Dances
John C. Campbell Folk School - Brasstown, NC

Tuesday Bluegrass Sessions
ISIS Music Hall - Asheville, NC

December 13, 2017:
John Hartford Bluegrass Jam
Funkatorium - Asheville, NC

Wednesday Night Bluegrass
The Ugly Dog Pub - Highlands, NC

December 14, 2017:
Fiddle and Guitar Classes at the Historic Earl Theatre
The Earle Theatre - Mount Airy, NC

Zuma Coffee Bluegrass Jam Session
Zuma Coffee - Marshall, NC

Old Helton School Hog Stomp
Old Helton School - Lansing, NC

Thursday Night Jam at The Earle Theatre
The Earle Theatre - Mount Airy, NC

Micaville Music Concert Series 
One of a Kind Art Gallery - Burnsville, NC

Thursday Night Jam at the Silvermont Mansion
Thursday Night Jam at the Silvermont Mansion - Brevard, NC

Weekly Jam Sessions
 at the Jones House
Jones House Community Center - Boone, NC

 December 15, 2017:
Woody's Original Mountain Music
Woody's Original Mountain Music House - Marion, NC

Clay's Corner Friday Night Jam Session
Clay's Corner - Brasstown, NC

Feed &  Seed 
Feed & Seed - Fletcher, NC

December 16, 2017:
Saturday Morning Gospel Jam
Killough’s Music &  Loan - Marion, NC

Micaville Music Jam
One of a Kind Art Gallery - Burnsville, NC

WPAQ Saturday Morning Merry-Go-Round
The Earle Theatre - Mount Airy, NC

SEBA 3rd Saturday Jam
Historic Cowee School - Franklin, NC

Back Porch Old-Time Music Jam
Oconaluftee Visitor Center - Cherokee, NC

Jimmy's Pick N Grin
Jimmy's Pick N Grin - Andrews, NC

December 17, 2017:
Sunday Afternoon Jam at the Mountain Gateway Museum
Mountain Gateway Museum - Old Fort, NC

Folk School Contra &  Square Dances
John C. Campbell Folk School - Brasstown, NC

Get links and details for current 
Blue Ridge Music Trails events HERE 


Monday, December 4, 2017

The Esmeralda Inn & Restaurant December Wine Dinner

December 6, 2017, 6:00 PM at The Esmeralda Inn and Restaurant, 910 Main Street, Chimney Rock, NC: December Wine Dinner. $75 per person.

Reservations Required - 828-625-2999
Amuse Bouche
Saffron risotto cake with carpaccio of beef, crème fraiche and Carolina reaper confit
First Course
Butternut squash ravioli with roasted garlic and sage cream sauce

Firesteed Riesling
Second Course
Sharp cheddar risotto with smoked beets, duck confit and pomegranate glaze

Brella Pinot Noir
Blood orange-rosemary granita
Third Course
Pan-seared, coffee-rubbed filet mignon with fondant potatoes, wild mushrooms & shallot cream sauce

Cummins Road Pinot Noir
Final course
Brown butterscotch pudding

Willamette Valley Riesling
Find more information about  
The Esmeralda Inn and Restaurant 
including current rates, 
availability and customer reviews


Sunday, December 3, 2017

Mountain Spirits: Brusin 'Ales Hosts Birdsong Brewing Co. and Founders CBS Beer Tastings

December 7, 2017 from 5 PM to 7 PM at Brusin' Ales, 66 Broadway Street, Asheville, NC:  Birdsong Brewing Co. Beer Tasting.   Brusin' Ales welcomes Lauren Bilski to the shop this Thursday. She'll be pouring samples from Charlotte's Birdsong Brewing Co.  "Birdsong started in 2011 with just two full-time employees. Since then, they've brewed all kinds of exciting beers. Thanks to the overwhelming response, they have since purchased a 17,000-square-foot building in the Belmont neighborhood with a new 30-barrel brewhouse and room for up to 1,200 barrels of fermentation capacity."

December 7, 2017 from 5 PM to 7 PM - Founders CBS Bottle Release and Tasting.  Hot stuff coming through! Founders CBS is among the most coveted beers from the Grand Rapids, MI, based This is an extremely limited release and you can count on it running out VERY quickly, so make sure you get to Brusin' Ales by 5:00 if you want a chance to pick up a bottle. Jesse Robinson will be on hand to pour samples.

Check out all the NEW RELEASES at Brusin' Ales  just in time for holiday gift - giving. Order online for in-store pick-up or shipping anywhere your beer lovers live. It's a gift you know will fit.

Thursday, November 30, 2017

Biltmore a Highlight of the Holiday Season in the Mountains

Now - January 6, 2017   Candlelight Christmas Evenings at Biltmore    Explore Biltmore House during holiday evenings when candles and fireplaces fill the grand home with a warm glow, accenting delicate ornaments and priceless treasures with metallic shine and sparkle, and music warms the heart.

Your evening admission includes:  a Reserved evening visit of Biltmore House, Daytime access to Biltmore Gardens and Antler Hill Village & Winery on the same day or next day as your evening visit, Free parking.

Now - January 7, 2017    Christmas at Biltmore    The celebration that began on Christmas Eve in 1895 when George Vanderbilt introduced his family and friends to the newly completed Biltmore home, continues today.  This wonderful celebration allows all visitors to enjoy America's largest home decorated with dozens of Christmas trees, hundreds of wreaths, bows, and poinsettias, miles of evergreen garland, and thousands of ornaments.

Friday, October 27, 2017

Halloween Events in the Mountains: Treat or Treat" Halloween Haunted Island in Cherokee NC

October 27 - 28, 2017    "Treat or Treat" Halloween Haunted Island     There will be fun for the entire family (nothing to be scared of!) as the Island transforms into a haunted "carn-evil". At the Cherokee Bonfire, the troupe will be sharing haunting stories of the Cherokee. 

There will be an intense haunted cane experience on the Island for those who dare; Friday beginning at 6 PM and ending at 11 PM; Saturday beginning at 6 PM and ending at midnight.

Get more Cherokee events and information on our 

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Annual Appalachian Summer Begins this week in Boone NC

June 27 - August 5, 2017    Appalachian Summer at Appalachian State University   A month+ long arts festival that features events in music, dance, theatre, visual arts and film on the campus of Appalachian State University in Boone NC.

Get a Festival Brochure

With award-winning artists from all across the world coming to the High Country in one summer, the festival has become an attraction that appeals to thousands and has been ranked one of the "Top 20 Events in the Southeast" by the Southeastern Tourism Society. There is something for everyone from fine art enthusiasts, to country and bluegrass fans and all those who like a good mixture of both. Get a complete event schedule at the site.

This week's events:

Tuesday, June 27 Young People’s Global Film Series: My Lucky Elephant
1 PM, Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts
Recommended for all ages

A young orphaned boy and a baby elephant end up together in an adventure that takes them from an exotic jungle to a bustling city. They’ll discover that through all the laughter, the fun, the challenges and the surprises, life is better when you share it with a friend. Thailand; Rated PG for brief mild language; Directed by Eric Schwab (2013); 91 Minutes.

Wednesday, June 28 Weicholz Global Film Series: The Innocents (Les Innocentes)
Schaefer Center for the Performing Arts
Pre-film talk with Dr. John Pfeifer begins at 7pm, with the film beginning at approximately 7:30pm.
Based on a true story, The Innocents tells the story of a French Red Cross doctor, Mathilde Beaulieu, who is treating the last of the French survivors of a German prison camp in a clinic outside of Warsaw. When a panicked Benedictine nun appears at the clinic begging the young female doctor to follow her back to the abbey, Mathilde finds a shocking situation which threatens the very of existence of the convent. A non-believer, Mathilde enters the sisters’ fiercely private world, dictated by the rituals of their order and the strict Mother Superior. Fearing the shame of exposure, the hostility of the occupying Soviet troops and local Polish communists and while facing an unprecedented crisis of faith, the nuns increasingly turn to Mathilde as their beliefs and traditions clash with harsh realities. Poland/France; PG-13; Directed by Anne Fontaine (2016); 115 Minutes.

Friday, June 30 Broyhill Chamber Ensemble
8 PM, Rosen Concert Hall

Every summer, violinist Gil Morgenstern, Artistic Director of the Broyhill Chamber Ensemble and his Reflections Series International, assembles some of the nation’s most exciting and acclaimed musicians for an exquisite concert series embracing a diverse repertoire of chamber music works. The series opens on June 30, with additional concerts on July 16, 23 and 25.
June 30 Program
Piano Trio in G major (“Gypsy Rondo”), Hob XV:25 - Joseph Haydn
String Trio in D major, Op. 21. C - Sergei Ivanovich Taneyev
Quintet for Piano and Strings, Op. 44 - Robert Schumann

Gil Morgenstern, violin
Grace Park, violin
Kathryn Lockwood, viola
Caroline Stinson, cello
Reiko Uchida, piano

  • Lunch & Learn Lecture Series: Barbara Hardy & Bob Ray, Circles of Influence Exhibition Artists - Wednesday, July 5
  • Weicholz Global Film Series: Worlds Apart - Wednesday, July 5
  • Summer Exhibition Celebration at the Turchin Center - Friday, July 7
  • An Evening with Sutton Foster - Saturday, July 8
  • Eastern Festival Orchestra featuring Midori  - Sunday, July 9

Monday, June 26, 2017

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Opening Weekend of Brevard Music Center's 2017 Summer Music Festival

The 81st season of The Brevard Music Center's Summer Music Festival offers an exceptional variety of great music and very special performances,” says Brevard Music Center President and CEO Mark Weinstein. “From classical masterworks to modern favorites to family-friendly performances of Broadway and Hollywood classics, this season offers a little something for everyone. The opening weekend reflects the entire season’s magic and diversity.”

June 23 - 25, 2017   Opening Weekend of the Festival at Brevard Music Center   Keith Lockhart celebrates his 10th anniversary as Artistic Director with one of the best-known works in classical music and Garrick Ohlsson’s masterful interpretation of Brahms.  

Country and Americana fans will welcome Lee Ann Womack, a Grammy, CMA, and ACM award winning artist acclaimed for I Hope You Dance – which sold over 6 million albums – and her newest release,  

Ballet meets Orchestra in this story of a Russian fairground puppet, revealed through Stravinsky’s exuberant and energetic symphonic masterpiece. Violin superstar Anne Akiko Meyers, “one of the most adventurous soloists on the international music scene today,” makes her BMC debut.  

Find links for local lodging, restaurants and attractions 


Thursday, May 18, 2017

What to do this Weekend in the Mountains

Mountain events and festivals are everywhere in the month of May as Western North Carolina comes alive with wildflowers, rhododendron and mountain laurel and the beautiful shades of green in new foliage. Warm sunny days and cool evenings offer the perfect setting of outdoor adventures and festivals.  Get links for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 19, 2017
Event:     Downtown After Five  
Free live music entertainment in downtown Asheville. Headlining this month is CHA WA. The celebration is every third Friday, May through September, with the goal of encouraging locals and visitors to enjoy downtown Asheville and support local businesses and entertainers.  The event is located on North Lexington Avenue (between Hiawassee and the I-240 overpass). Food and beer vendors will be available.   Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 19 - June 3 , 2017   
Event:     Flat Rock Playhouse presents: A Tuna Christmas  By popular demand, Scott Treadway and Preston Dyar serve up Christmas a little early on the Mainstage of the Flat Rock Playhouse. This hilarious comedy features the residents of Tuna, Texas – the “third smallest” town in the state. 2 actors. 22 characters. 2 million laughs! Admission: $15 - $50  
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017 
Event:     Art in the Park  
A juried arts and craft show featuring 90 artists held in the picturesque downtown park once a  month from May through October.  Some of the best local and regional artists and craftspeople showcase their handcrafted jewelry, pottery, fiber, glass, photography, painting and more.  

Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017 
Event:    Carolina Donut Festival  
Come out for food and fun in downtown Marion with the 1st Annual Carolina Donut Festival, hosted by Marion's own Mr. Bob's Donuts. Enjoy a variety of "doughy" goodness, games, music and more.   
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017
NC City:  ROBBINSVILLE (Stecoah Valley)
Event:     Stecoah's Annual Bluegrass Festival 
  Enjoy bluegrass music ALL DAY LONG outside, or inside if the weather turns bad. You'' also find arts, crafts and food vendors.  Performers include Graham County Line • The Wilson Family • Jonah Riddle • The Pressley Girls  • a Jam Session with Larry Barnett and the Stecoah JAM kids. The Schoolhouse Cafe will be open all day. 11 AM - 5 PM.   
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017  
Event:     Saluda Arts Festival   This  year's annual festival will include  almost 90 artists and craftspeople, lively and award winning music, the children's art tent, several art and craft demonstrators and delicious food from our local restaurants. The festival also pays tribute this year to the late artist Johnny Waddill with a special exhibit displaying his work during the festival at the Saluda Center, 64 Greenville St., Saluda, NC. 

Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017  
Event:     12th Annual Black Mountain Garden Show and Sale   The Garden Sale selection of plants cover perennials, annuals, herbs, vegetables, native trees, shrubs, maples, iris, daylilies, hostas and garden accessories. Garden related workshops will be conducted throughout the day. Come early to purchase items from the Clothesline Fundraising Event which supports the Black Mountain Beautification Committee. Parking is free and food is available at the hotel. Returning vendors and new vendors make this an annual event not to be missed. Admission: Free   
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017  
Event:    Concerts on the Deck     Dance the evening away to jazz, beach music and country rock. Free outdoor music series with food, drinks and a large dance floor. Sponsored by Window World. Convenient parking deck located at the intersection of 9th Street and the CBD Loop. Held the 3rd Saturday rain or shine, May - October. Admission: Free  
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017  
NC City:  NEBO
Event:     MTA Triathlon at Lake James   Join the McDowell Trails Association for the 8th Annual Lake James Triathlon on the grounds of spectacular Lake James State Park with hundreds of acres of forest land, a swimming beach, hiking trails, tent and picnic sites plus an interpretive area. Begin with a 750 meter swim in Lake James followed by a 22 mile bicycle ride ending with a 3.1 mile foot race to the finish line. 
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017  
Event:     Madison County Barn Tour Event   From barns to barbecue, from Appalachian arts to country music, Madison County Barn Day will celebrate mountain culture and good times. The big event begins with a narrated bus tour of several historically significant barns of Madison County. The tour will be followed by a dinner with entertainment by local musicians and a country auction. Admission: $40, or $75 for 2 tickets 
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017
NC City:  NEBO

Event:     Vineyard Deck Music Series - WNC artist Ginny McAfee   Come to South Creek Winery and a listen to great local music. Tastings include the glass and are $6, $7 or $10 depending on the wines you choose. The music events are rain or shine (if questionable weather, please call to inquire) and provided to South Creek Customers at no admission fee, unless it is a stated ticketed event. Tasting room opens at 11 am with wine tasting for a nominal fee; music begins at 1 PM.   
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20, 2017 
Event:     Candle Light Ghost Tours   Come out for an evening of tales, mystery and haunts at the Candle Light Ghost Tours. Learn about the ghosts that haunt the old buildings that make up downtown Wilkesboro. Visit a cemetery where Civil War Soldiers are buried, stand in the jail cell Tom Dooley spent his last days, and listen to the stories of the haunted Smithey Hotel. Tickets will be sold on the Courthouse lawn at the museum and at the Wilkesboro Open Air Market the Friday before. Tours start at 8 PM  
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 20 - 21, 2017
Event:     Spring Girl Scout Day and Campout    
Girl Scouts of all ages may enjoy their own special days at Chimney Rock State Park. Nearly 1,000 acres make an incredible backdrop to a variety of programs that are educational and fun. And the fun doesn't stop when the sun goes down - the 5-acre Meadows is the perfect place to spend a night under the stars. See the Scouts page for detailed program descriptions.  
Get a link for details on our NC Events Calendar

Date:      May 21, 2017
Event:    Haywood Community Band Concert Series  
Held every 3rd Sunday starting at 6:30 PM at the Maggie Valley Pavilion, 3987 Soco Road. Enjoy musical renditions by the Haywood Community Band. Concerts offered FREE to the public from May to October. 


Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Help Hike 1,175 Miles in One Day on The Mountains-to-Sea Trail

On September 9, 2017 The Friends of The Mountains-to-Sea Trail need YOU to collaborate with hundreds of others across North Carolina to hike and paddle the entire 1,175 miles of the MST in one day.  Registration is now open for all legs - follow the instructions on to sign up.

MST in a Day commemorates a speech on September 9, 1977 by Howard Lee, then the NC Secretary of Natural Resources and Community Development. He told a National Trails Symposium in Waynesville that North Carolina should create a "state trail from the mountains to the coast, leading through communities as well as natural areas."

That speech was the catalyst for the trail that now stretches through 36 counties from the Great Smoky Mountains to the Outer Banks, and we're celebrating its 40th anniversary all across the state in 2017.
MST in a Day commemorates a speech on September 9, 1977 by Howard Lee, then the NC Secretary of Natural Resources and Community Development. He told a National Trails Symposium in Waynesville that North Carolina should create a "state trail from the mountains to the coast, leading through communities as well as natural areas."

The Friends are asking people to sign up to complete a "leg" of the trail any time on September 9. Most legs are three to five miles, although some are longer in remote parts of the trail. You can hike your leg alone or with friends or family. While you're at it, send several photos of your hike or paddle so we can compile photos taken by everyone who participates into a video of the trail.

The Mountains-to-Sea Trail  connects Clingman's Dome in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park to Jockey's Ridge State Park on the Outer Banks with almost 1200 miles of footpaths and temporary connectors. Currently nearly 700 miles of footpaths are complete with work crews, mostly volunteers, continuing construction. The connectors make it possible to hike the entire nearly 1200 miles.

The route passes through 37 counties containing about 40 percent of the state's population. The trail is used by people out for an afternoon stroll as well as those planning to hike the trail from one end of the state to the other. 

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Mountain Spirits: Special Beer and Wine Events this Weekend

March 16, 2017 at Brusin' Ales, 66 Broadway Street in downtown Asheville NC  - 5 PM to 7 PM.  Ashley Monday will be at Brusin' Ales this Thursday for a tasting of seasonal and special releases from Brooklyn Brewery. In addition to the new "Cloaking Device" Brett Porter, there will also be opening another bottle of last years fantastic Serpent. 

March 17, 2017 at Maggie B's Wine and Specialty Store, 10 C South Main Street in Weaverville NC:  5:30 - 8 PM. St. Patrick's Day Green Wine Tasting.  Be green and celebrate St. Patty's day with Maggie B's this Friday They will be pouring "green" wines that are carbon neutral, bio dynamic and organic. Don't worry, there will also be  some delicious Irish beer too. 

Deal of the Week:  Elki Artichoke Tomato Bruschetta Spread 12 oz jar WAS: $8.99 each THIS WEEK: $4.99 each
Maggie B's Wine and Specialty Store

March 17, 2017 at Round Peak Vineyard,   765 Round Peak Church Road in Mount Airy NC - St. Patricks Day celebration at the brewery. 2 PM - 8 PM. A food truck, a new beer release, our newly canned Knuckle Dragger and trAle bRed...sounds like a winning combination. NOW released: CANNED BEER, Knuckle Dragger and trAle bRed. Both are now available at the brewery and winery, and soon to be available elsewhere.

March 18, 2017 - Spring Fling 12 PM to 6 PM. Spring Fling is back and bigger than ever. With great food from the smoker, live music, the release of the vineyard's 1st ever canned wines, and our newly canned beers as well, lots of beers, how can you pass this up?  NOW released CANNED WINE. A 1st in NC! Cans of Infatuation, Sweetest Thang Pink, and Sangria are all now available at the winery and for ordering on-line.

Canned wine ( Infatuation, Sweetest Thang Pink, and Sangria) from Round Peak Vineyards

Monday, March 13, 2017

Ski NC: St Patrick's Day Park Jam

March 17, 2017 - St Patrick's Park Jam at Appalachian Ski Mountain    A fun and festive park session Friday night with activities will be available for all abilities, both skiers and snowboarders.

With cold weather and natural snowfall predicted this week, the last of the NC Ski season should be the best.

Registration will be from 5-6:30 in the Alpine Ski Shop, and the park session will begin around 7 PM. As always, this event is FREE with purchase of a ski ticket.

In the spirit of St Patrick’s Day, riders Must wear green to participate.  This will be the fifth season of the Park Jam, so be ready for some fun features and some AWESOME prizes for standouts.

Get local information and links to ski lodging on The Blowing Rock NC Visit Guide.


Thursday, February 2, 2017

Flash back to the '80s with the Retro Ski Weekend at Beech Mountain

February 23-26, 2016 at Beech Mountain Ski Resort:, Beech Mountain NC

It's Baaack: the Totally ’80s Retro Ski Weekend at Beech Mountain. From material girls to men without hats, fans of the 1980s will flock to Beech Mountain this month for the sixth annual Totally '80s Retro Ski Weekend.

The weekend, consisting of four days of tubular awesomeness, takes place at Beech Mountain Resort and throughout the town of Beech Mountain.

This year's festivities include live '80s music each night, retro ski fashions every day and a plenty of old school activities ranging from a Rubik's Cube competition to '80s karaoke to the ever-popular Totally Retro Apparel Contest. A talking Knight Rider KITT car and stainless steel DeLorean will be on display in the ski village, while arcade aficionados can take a shot at the high score in the Ms. Pac Man contest.

There will also be opportunities to take photos with Brake Michaels, the Carolinas' premier Bret Michaels look-alike artist. Most attendees say the highlight of the weekend is checking out the colorful throwback ski clothes. "You dust off all your best '80s gear and wear it on the slopes. It is awesome and fun and the pictures are worth a thousand words," says Talia Freeman, marketing director for Beech Mountain Resort. "People get so into it. You wouldn't believe some of the stuff we see."

This year promises an even larger array of 1980s ski threads as the first-ever '80s ski apparel parade unleashes a neon procession of dayglo on Friday afternoon from the top of the slopes. Further bending the space-time continuum is an audacious lineup of bands, starting with the power rock of Raleigh-based Rockzilla on Thursday night at Famous Fast Eddie's, followed by the new wave sounds of Cassette Rewind from Charlotte on Friday night at Mile High Tavern.

Headlining the weekend Saturday night is The Breakfast Club, America's Favorite 1980s Tribute Band, in the Beech Tree lodge at the ski resort. During intermission Saturday night, a winner will be crowned in the $500 retro apparel contest. A late-night dance party closes the Saturday bash.

"It's a unique ski weekend and draws a lot of non-skiers, too," says Beech Mountain tourism director Kate Gavenus. "When people come up the mountain and drive into town, we want them to feel like they've gone back in time, and many of them say they do feel that way." For more info or lodging specials, call (800) 468-5506 or visit:

Friday, January 27, 2017

NC Ski Slopes OPEN despite Persistent warm weather

Slope conditions and updates as of January 27, 2017:

Appalachian Ski Mountain is  OPEN  for the 2016-17 Season Skiing 9 slopes with 5 lifts on a base of 12 - 30 inches.   1/28-29  USASA Skier/Boarder X;  2/1 - Appalachian Cup Series;  2/4 - Burton Riglet Park Tour;   2/5, 3/5 - $10 Sunday Nights (half night)

Beech Mountain Ski Resort is OPEN for the 2016-17 Season 
Skiing on 8 slopes with 5 lifts on a base of 12 - 26 inches. Tubing is currently closed, ice skating is open.  2/4-12  College Week;   2/5  USASA Southeastern Series;  2/5  Superbowl Party at The Beech Tree Bar & Grille

Beech Mountain Slopes Trail Map

Cataloochee Ski Area is  OPEN for the 2016-17 Season   
Snowmaking in progress and moving up the mountain as cold weather continues  Skiing on 4 slopes with 2 lifts on a base of 8-12 . Tube World is open.   1/26-27  Military Appreciation Weekend;  2/2-3  Law Enforcement Appreciation Days

Sapphire Valley Ski Area is   OPEN for the 2016-17 Season   
 Call 828-743-7663 for the latest information on slope conditions, open trails and the Frozen Falls Tube Park.

Sugar Mountain Ski Resort  is OPEN for the 2016-17 Season   
Skiing on 7 slopes with 4 lifts on a base of 12 - 36 inches. Skating and Tubing are open. 2/5  High Country Junior Race Series Giant Slalom;  2/19  High Country Junior Race Series Giant Slalom

Wolf Ridge Ski Resort  is OPEN for the 2016-17 Season    
Skiing on 4 slopes with 3 lifts on a base of 20 inches.  Tubing open. 
Appalachian Ski Mountain

Get links for ALL NC Ski Resorts and Areas 
with complete information on our 


Thursday, January 26, 2017

The Blue Ridge Music Center Winter Music Series

February 5 at 6 PM - Winter Concert,  The Blue Ridge Music Center : Art + Sound. For this concert The Blue Ridge Music Center will be working with the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art. $18 advance general admission, $28 VIP (reserve seating & letterpress poster) or $23 door, $33 VIP. Held at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston-Salem, NC.

Lonnie Holley has devoted his life to the practice of improvisational creativity. His art and music, born out of struggle, hardship, but perhaps more importantly, out of furious curiosity and biological necessity, manifest in drawing, painting, sculpture, photography, performance, and sound. His music and lyrics are improvised on the spot and morph and evolve with every event, concert, and recording. 

For Kentucky-born cellist and composer Ben Sollee, music and activism often intertwine. He has toured by bicycle, spoken about sustainability at festivals, and worked on a collaborative album to bring awareness about mountain top removal strip mining in Appalachia. With it all, his musicianship shines through. The New York Times wrote Sollee's "...meticulous, fluent arrangements continually morphed from one thing to another. Appalachian mountain music gave way to the blues, and one song was appended with a fragment from a Bach cello suite, beautifully played."

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

National Parks Foundation to Celebrate 50th Anniversary

The National Park Foundation is gearing up to celebrate another milestone in 2017 – their 50th anniversary! For the last half century, park lovers have been working at The Foundation to ensure America’s special places remain vibrant, relevant, and protected for future generations. In honor of this special birthday, NPF has collected some of the favorite park stories from their staff.  Read all about these favorite places and experiences here.

2016 was a great year for the National Park Foundation and our national parks. Through grants of over $32 million, The Foundation helped protect these special places, were able to connect new audiences to these incredible places, created opportunities to inspire the next generation of national park supporters, and celebrated the centennial of the National Park Service. Also in 2016, NPF added several new sites to the National Park System including Stonewall National Monument and Belmont-Paul Women’s Equality National Monument. The Foundation continued to support and expand the Every Kid in a Park initiative to 9 focus cities and also supported 21st Century Conservation Service Corps at several parks in 2016. The National Park Foundation is proud of everything they accomplished in 2016 and very excited for all the great things to come in 2017, including celebrating NPF’s semi-centennial. Read more about the impact in 2016 on The National Park Foundation blog.

Winter is a great time to visit a National Park - just check the website for road closures due to inclement weather.  Fewer visitors and exquisite scenery make this season a stunning and peaceful time to escape into national parks.

FREE National Park Owners Guide. Make your national park experience better than ever. These FREE downloadable national park Owner's Guides are filled with travel tips and inside information on what not to miss. It's your one-stop resource to discover all your national parks.  Download any time.