20th Annual Blowing Rock Winterfest

Blowing Rock NC activities

It’s every Blowing Rock resident’s favorite time of year! This year, WinterFest turns 20 years old and is jam-packed with crazy fun events for the whole family. The history of Blowing Rock NC is one that begins in the 1800s, when the first family settled on what would become the Green Park Hotel. This charming town is tucked away in the foothills of Blue Ridge Mountain, and was named one of America’s Prettiest Winter Towns by Travel & Leisure magazine.

WinterFest made its first debut in January 1998, with Chilly the snowman and his wife Crystal as mascots. Events include wine tasting, live music, ice sculptures, a dog show, and the infamous Polar Plunge where residents jump into a partially frozen lake while wearing a zany costume. If you’re looking for fun things to do in Blowing Rock NC, look no further than the following Blowing Rock NC activities:

Thursday January 25th

·       WinterFeast – Are you ready to sample small plates from 15 different restaurants prepared by the best chefs in Blowing Rock? The event has sold out for the past five WinterFests, so call the Blowing Rock Chamber and make a reservation for your party now! Winterfeast will take place from 5:30 pm – 9:30 pm at the Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock (185 Chetola Lake Drive Blowing Rock, NC 28605) with three different available seating times: 5:30 pm, 6:45 pm, and 8:00 pm. The cost is $35 per person.

·       Doodlebug Club at BRAHM – Are you a parent or guardian with a preschool-aged child? Doodlebug Club (10:30 am – 11:30 am | Blowing Rock Art & History Museum 159 Chestnut Street Blowing Rock, NC 28605) is an educational dedicated to developing basic art skills such as recognizing the primary colors, holding a paintbrush or a pair of scissors the correct and safe way, and introducing them to easy mediums like watercolors and clay. The cost is $5 per person, and is free for Museum members, but space is limited. Call 828-295-9099 or email to reserve your spot today.

Friday January 26th

·       WinterFest Ice Stroll – Take a tour of beautiful Blowing Rock and see all of the gorgeous ice sculptures created by Travis Dale, owner of Artisan Ice Sculptures and one of only five Master Ice Carvers in the United States. Most Blowing Rock NC activities are a free events. This one will take place from 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm and the sculptures are at the following locations: Vincent Properties -989 Main St, Blowing Rock Market – 990 Main St., neaco – 1053 Main St., Blowing Rock Properties – 1059 Main St.,The Best Cellar – 203 Sunset Dr., The Spice & Tea Exchange – 1087 Main St., Sunset Tees & Hattery – 1117 Main St., Six Pence Pub – 1121 Main St., Hanna’s – 1123 Main St., Premiere Sotheby’s International Realty – 1127 Main St., SouthMarke Shops – 1179 Main St., Town Tavern – 1182 Main St.

·      WinterFest JazzFest at Green Park Inn – The Todd Wright Trio will perform from 6:30 pm – 9:30 pm in the Chestnut Grille, the original Grand Ballroom. There is no cost to attend, and full food and beverage services are available with six entrees priced below $20. The Green Park Inn is located at 9239 Valley Blvd. Blowing Rock, NC 28605.

Saturday January 27th

·      Polar Plunge at Chetola – Wanna plunge? The Polar Plunge in Chetola Lake is one of the most popular events at WinterFest. Take a dive and let the rush of icy cold water make you feel alive. The event will hosted by WBTV news anchor John Carter and judges will award the “Golden Plunger” to the best costume. Day-of registration and check-in begins at 9am, but pre-registration is encouraged. The event will take place at  Chetola Resort (195 Chetola Lake Drive) and participants, or plungers, will gather in the indoor pool area at 9:30 am for a safety speech, followed by the annual march to Chetola Lake. The official plunge starts at 10am, but onlookers should arrive early to find good a spot to watch. There will be a brunch from 10am – noon in Timbers Room, and will feature a live feed of the Polar Plunge, drink specials, and special brunch menu. All proceeds will benefit local charities.

·      Silent Auction & Raffle – Are you interested in bidding on lodging at area hotels, spa day packages, and outdoor adventures, theatre memberships, artwork by local artists, gift certificates to your restaurants, and more – all for a good cause? The Blowing Rock WinterFest Silent Auction & Raffle will take place from 10am – 4pm at the Blowing Rock American Legion behind the Police Station on Wallingford Street. Buy raffle tickets for gift baskets from your favorite shops and enjoy bidding on over $20,000 worth of items from over 200 businesses. Proceeds go directly to Mountain Alliance, an organization that aids Watauga County high school aged youth.

Sunday January 28th

·      Winterfest Beer Garden – Don’t hibernate, celebrate! The 2nd Annual WinterFest Beer Garden will take place at the Inn at Ragged Gardens (165 Morris Street Blowing Rock, NC 28605), and will included over 20 different beer vendors. Local and regional breweries will offer samples of their “Hops and Barely Pops” along with delicious snacks like fire-roasted brats and warm pretzels, and patrons can play Snowball Cornhole or Tipsy Tower. All attendees will receive a commemorative WinterFest pint glass, and must be 21 or older with a picture ID.

·      WinterPaws Dog Show – Do you have a pretty pooch? Here’s more things to do in Blowing Rock NC – Sign up for the WinterPaws dog show! There is a $5 entry fee per category or $25 for all six categories. Categories include Most Unique Looking Mix of Breeds, Best Wiggle Butt, Most Clever Dog Trick, Cutest Looking Dog in the World, and Best Winter Fashion Wear. The winner from each category goes to compete for the Grand Prize, and the title of Best In Show. Don’t have a dog? No problem. There will be several shelter dogs on-site who are up for adoption. 100% of proceeds go to the Watauga Humane Society. The show is located in the Blowing Rock Elementary School gym (165 Morris Street) and registration at the door begins at 12:00 pm.

This is a fun weekend event for residents of The Coves Mountain River Club, who are only a half-hour drive away. Western North Carolina is one of the prettiest places to be during winter, as residents never run out of fun and exciting things to do. Embark on a romantic getaway to a ski resort where skiing is available at night and under the stars. Roast marshmallows around a campfire, enter a competition for who can make the most delicious and sweetest hot chocolate.

Take your children sledding, ice skating, or even snowboarding. Have a snowball fight, or build your own igloo. Sample Apple Cider Bourbon, or learn how to make your own Cinnamon Bourbon Hot Toddy. There’s nothing better than gazing up at the stars and watching the moon rise over the snow-covered mountains. Wintertime in Western North Carolina is something truly magical.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.

Tags: Blowing Rock | Festivals

Laser Light Shows Wow Locals in Lenoir

things to do in Lenoir NC

Christmas lights have had a long and cherished history within our country as well as abroad.  It’s no wonder that lights– whether the flickering wax candles on the family tree from days long past, or the newer laser light shows projected for all to see, symbolize our passion and spirit during the holiday season. 

The mountain towns in North Carolina know how to celebrate, how to add a little illumination and a full spectrum of color to the shortest days of the year.  Holiday lights cast magic and create a sense of nostalgia, making folks of all ages feel the enchantment of their childhood Christmas.

For those of us who have already chosen the perfect Lenoir NC real estate, we are most fortunate to have spectacular light shows in our very own community. And while you’re exploring the mountain homes near Asheville, be sure to include fun things to do in Lenoir NC on your trip, to treat yourself, as well as those you get to spend these cherished days of December with, to the festive laser light shows happening in our home town of Lenoir.

  • WHAT: Lenoir Laser Light Shows
  • WHEN: December 1 – 30th 6:00pm-10pm
  • WHERE: The Square in Downtown Lenoir

Music accompanies over 10,000 lights on the quads of Lenoir’s downtown square, making all merry and bright!  Remember, when you add a laser light show to your holiday list of things to do in Lenoir NC, that you can sit outside in the quaint square or remain in your car and listen to the holiday tunes on your radio as you take in the twinkling lights and experience the wonder.

If you haven’t yet found your idyllic Lenoir NC real estate, this is a smart time to venture to Caldwell County, and pay our vibrant town a visit. Lenoir is one of the mountain towns in North Carolina that excels at creating an all around down-home atmosphere with plenty to do.   There’s true entrepreneurial talent, creative energy, and a deep connection to the history that made this community all it is today. The architecture still speaks its rich history.   

Even those who live day to day here have a hard time fitting in all the things to do in Lenoir NC—from the artistic galleries, to the boutiques and shops, you can stroll for hours just soaking it all in, and when your appetite gets the best of you, the fresh eateries, wineries, and breweries have a variety of amazing food and drink for all to enjoy.  Festivals and entertainment enhance every season in the mountain towns of North Carolina…there’s something amazing happening every weekend!  Car and antique shows, bluegrass jams, concerts, or for those who want to connect with the gorgeous outdoors—golfing, fishing, kayaking, hiking, camping, and parks to stretch your legs while you grab some peace and relaxation.

The Coves Mountain River Club is truly a mountain paradise, with scenic views to feed the soul, and a community spirit that is hard to come by. If you’re on the hunt for the ideal Lenoir NC real estate, drop in for a spell and discover the place you’ll no doubt dream of calling home.  We have a perfect blend of customized homes thoughtfully placed near a flowing river, sprawling hiking and horse trails, lush community gardens, and a lodge with scenic views of the majestic mountains.

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour!

Tags: Festivals | Lenoir

Christmas Parades in Asheville and Surrounding Towns

Christmas Parades Asheville

The charming mountain towns of North Carolina know just how to usher in the holiday season with festive warmth, a community spirit, and joyful celebration. Now is that time of year when the days are growing shorter and if you’re like us, you’re dusting off your snow shoes and shining your snow skis as you’re drinking a warm mug of hot chocolate.

There’s nothing like good old fashioned tradition to bring back the holidays of our childhood—whether it’s our grandmother’s cranberry stuffing recipe, the yearly pilgrimage to cut down the perfect Christmas tree, or gathering on the quaint streets of town with those near and dear to be a part of the holiday parade. A happy time that will likely make you giggle.

If you’re just beginning the exciting search for North Carolina mountain homes for sale, why not time your exploration in the North Carolina mountain communities  during these cheery and festive Christmas parades:

Downtown Lenoir – 6:30 pm

  • C.O.L. Christmas Parade
  • Saturday, November, 25, 2017
  • Friday, December 1, 2017

“With over 200 entries, the Lenoir Christmas parade has become a much loved holiday tradition with university and high school band performances, numerous floats , community groups, businesses and of course Santa float is the grand finale!  Don’t miss this holiday happening!”

Hickory Christmas Parade and Tree Lighting

  • Friday, November 17, 2017
  • 222 Union Square 6 pm-8:30 pm

Santa and Mrs. Claus will light the Christmas tree after the parade.  Music and visits with Mr. and Mrs. Claus continues under the Sails on the Square.

Downtown Morganton Christmas Parade

  • Tuesday, December 5, 2017 – 6 pm
  • Theme Seussify Morganton (Dr. Seuss)

“Please join the Morganton Downtown Development Association as they present the Downtown Morganton Christmas Parade! Each year there are over 100 entries in the parade. This includes floats, marching bands as well as characters of all shapes and sizes to greet the younger viewers. The excitement of the parade and the Christmas season is contagious!” The parade route begins at corner of E. Meeting Street and proceeds northwest up S. Green, left on Collett Street, left onto S. Sterling Street, ending on W. Concord Street.

Sawmills Annual Christmas Parade

  • Saturday, December 2, 2017
  • Line up begins on Helena Street @9:30 am; parade begins at 10 am

Travels from 321A @ intersection of Cajah’s Mountain Road/Mission Road toward Granite Falls to Pregis Corp. on 321A.

Annual Downtown Granite Falls Christmas Parade

  • Saturday, December 2, 2017 – 12 pm-2 pm

Sponsored by the town of Granite Falls Rotary Club; this year’s theme “Movie Time Christmas” (Favorite Christmas Movie).  Registration forms to be in the parade can be picked up at the Granite Falls Police Department.

Hudson Christmas Parade

Saturday, December 2, 2017 – 2 pm

“From the middle school to the First Baptist Church north of Town. Church and Civic groups join antique cars, beauty queens, South Caldwell Band, fire departments and much more.”

Downtown Asheville Holiday Parade

Saturday, November 18, 2017 – 11 am

This year’s theme—Light up the Holidays.  Celebrating 70 years, the parade features 100 entries including marching bands, dance and cheer squads and festive floats.  A ninety-minute parade with entertainment for all ages. One mile route–Charlotte Street up Biltmore towards Pack Square; left on Patton and ends on French Broad Street After the parade photos with Santa from 2-4 pm at The Grove Arcade. 6 pm—Lighting of Winter Lights trees at Pack Square.

Living in the mountain towns of North Carolina at this time of year is a time full nostalgia. When time spent with family and friends makes the world more beautiful. The white-dusted mountains of the High Country provide a scenic backdrop along with Norman Rockwell-like towns lighted up for Christmas. Places where you can snuggle up by a cozy fire and enjoy a glass of wine. This is everyday life in the North Carolina mountain communities.

And at Christmas time, whether you’re browsing for the perfect unique holiday gifts, or gathering with friends, family and the community to take in a Christmas parade, there is a whole season chock full of joyous events to jot down on your calendar you won’t want to miss. In fact, if your searching for North Carolina mountain homes for sale, this is an incredible time of year to visit and take in all the decorations and magical lights and get yourself in the holiday spirit.

Only by visiting the mountain towns in North Carolina will you come to feel and sense the warm and welcoming nature of these close-knit communities.  Our towns have held onto their historic charm while creating new and unique shopping, dining and recreational opportunities. 

Why not take a peek at our gated mountain community while you’re here looking at North Carolina mountain homes for sale? Here’s a move-in ready home for sale with sweeping mountain views on Waterfall Lane priced at $699,900 with 3 spacious bedrooms, 2.5 baths, an office and a gracious 3,350 square feet of space.

This could be the perfect Craftsman-style home you’ve been searching for. Set on 2.25 acres, the home has sweeping views of Grandfather and Brown Mountains, as well as Table Rock.  The great room, porches and hot tub all look out over the majestic mountain view.  In addition, the builder has added touches most hope for–tons of storage closets, a temperature-controlled floor attic, and a whole house generator. You couldn’t ask for a sweeter location– overlooking 500,000 acre Pisgah National Forest and nearby Wilson Creek, a federally designated Scenic and Wild River.

Or perhaps you’ve always dreamed of designing your own mountain home with a state-of-the-art kitchen to gather with family as you create your favorite meals, or a stone fireplace to illuminate your master bedroom, and a great room filled with comfy oversized chairs and surround sound to play your favorite music while kicking back. Our design team will make the process easy and seamless. Take a peek at a few of the builder floor plans available.

When you visit The Coves, you’ll discover why we rival many of North Carolina mountain communities you’ve seen and we offer a better value!

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour. 

Tags: Festivals | Hickory | Lenoir | Morganton

Colorful October Festivals in Western North Carolina

Western North Carolina fall foliage

An incredible canvas of autumnal colors create a landscape that is cherished by all who live in the region, as well as those who come to take in the inspiring foliage.  The magic combination of the Blue Ridge and Great Smoky Mountains is the high peaks, the lush valleys, and the breadth of climates due to these variations in elevation. 

If you haven’t yet experienced the palette of rich colors that define the region for almost a month and a half, now is the time to take a scenic road trip down the Blue Ridge Parkway.  While you’re looking for amazing things to do in Lenoir NC, be sure to bring your camera, and take in some of the incredible fall festivals and events that add even more celebration to the next month or two before the holiday season is upon us.

Here are some of the most talked about festivals this month in the foothills of Western North Carolina:

The 11th North Carolina Oyster Roast at Fort Defiance

1792 Fort Defiance Drive, Lenoir, NC

Attendees enjoyed a fried flounder dinner with all the fixings and a bucket of about 2 1/2 doz steamed oysters along with two beer or wine tickets. Extra Buckets of Oysters and extra drink tickets will be available at the event as well as an amazing silent auction. The Starlighters provided the entertainment for a night of swing dancing on the beautiful grounds of Historic Fort Defiance, North Carolina. All profits from the event went directly to the mission of preserving and sharing the 1792 home of General William Lenoir.

Fort Defiance formed a non-profit organization in 1964 whose mission is to “preserve and share the life and times of William Lenoir and his 1792 home.”  Those living at The Coves cherish the restored house at Fort Defiance which has maintained its history and significance with over 300 artifacts and original furnishings.  Since Fort Defiance Inc receives no state or federal funding, the tightly-knit community of the mountain towns in North Carolina keep it going with their visits, memberships, as well as their support of events and programs.  The house was named after a frontier fort and was designed by William Lenoir and completed after four years of building in 1792.  William Lenoir was a teacher and surveyor.  His family lived in the home until 1961.

Tours are available November through March, Saturday and Sunday 12-4; weekends only or by appointment; $7 adults; $5 children 5-15; children under 5 are free.

Smoking in the Foothills Barbecue Competition and Festival

North Carolina State Championship Event

October 20 & 21, 2017

Historic Downtown Lenoir, NC

Free admission

What better way to celebrate fall in the mountain towns of North Carolina than with a little down-home cooking shared with your community, family and friends?  This is real barbecue brought to life by a good-hearted competition to feed your senses.  Sanctioned by The Kansas Barbecue Society, you can light up your own smoker or sit back and sample the perfection of the pitmasters.  Live Music on Plaza State; Poker Run; 50/50 Drawing; BBQ Competition (chicken, pork rib, brisket); and of course the Cornhole Tournament!

Smoking In The Foothills is a nonprofit organization whose commitment is raising money for charitable organizations as those who call their homes in the gated communities near Asheville NC know is so essential. Proceeds from all their festivals benefit local charities such as The Helping Hands Clinic and The Wig Bank of Caldwell County chosen in 2017.  Volunteers are needed so sign up and lend a hand to a worthy event on Friday, October 20 and Saturday October 21.

Last weekend was the 30th Annual Hickory October Fest in downtown Hickory.

This is known as “the premier annual festival for Hickory North Carolina.”  The second week of October Hickory’s downtown comes to life for three days with the charming outdoor festival so many have come to love and others seek to attend.  Three stages are lit with non-stop entertainment from traditional lively polka to the tried and true rock & roll.  There’s plenty else to keep people of all ages amused with two beer gardens, rides, games, the incredible juried arts and crafts show as well as shopping and eating from the hundreds of food and commercial vendors.  No wonder this festival has been going and growing strong since 1985.

The lucky people who have chosen to settle in the gated communities near Asheville NC, like The Coves, can take advantage of all the region has to offer. Locals know there’s no better way to take in the fall foliage than driving the Blue Ridge Parkway, climbing to elevations of 5,000 plus feet, sipping sweet cider and taking in the gorgeous colors that sprawl before you. 

Savor the sights of the fall foliage forecast before while exploring cozy mountain homes, and discover even more intimate street festivals and small mountain towns along the way.  You never exhaust the possibility of things to do in Lenoir NC along the 193 mile Parkway, or in the parks and forests you’ll discover as you explore.  Take a guided tour or venture off on your own to hike through the expanse of changing leaves. 

If you haven’t visited our gated mountain community, stop by to say hello. Did you know we have over 22 miles of groomed hiking trails within our gates? Our community spreads across 3,600 acres. Here hikers enjoy private trails that lead to four cascading waterfalls, along the Johns River and to our mountaintop clubhouse. At our mountain summit, gaze across to the mountain tops of Blowing Rock or down below into the Pisgah Forest valley. These are majestic views our residents enjoy each and every day. We’re confident you won’t find views anywhere else like we have them at The Coves.

Come explore the variety of homesites we have available whether you prefer a private wooded estate, a homesite near our amenities or near the river. Our homesites start around $39,000.

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour (and hike!)

Tags: Festivals | Hickory | Lenoir

2017 Morganton Festival – TGIF Concert Series

Morganton festival

The summer months are ripe with events that provide fun for the whole family. Mountain festivals bring music, art, and culture from all over the nation – and have something for everyone, no matter how niche the interest. The Historic Morganton Festival’s TGIF Concert series, which ran from May 5 through July 28th, held performances every Friday from regional and local country music acts. But the fun doesn’t stop there.

This coming fall, The Historic Morganton Festival will run from September 8 – 9th. Founded in 1981, the festival has since expanded to include 4 stages and over a mile-and-a-half of arts & craft vendors. Patrons can enjoy a variety of free music and dance performances, including clowns for the younger crowd, and even participate in 5k & 10k run. Here’s the lowdown:

Friday, September 8:

  • City Stage will feature performances from national acts. Crawford & Power will perform 6:30-7:30pm, Tanya Williams will sing the National Anthem at 7:30, and The Swon Brothers will play from 8:00-11:00pm.
  • Coors Light Stage (located in the Beer Garden) will feature performances from popular local and regional bands. The TGIF Open Mic Band (to be announced) will perform 7:00-9:00pm, followed by Throwdown Jones from 9:30-midnight.
  • Pepsi Stage (located in the Teen Zone) will feature a variety of regional dance studios and performers. The Dance Factory will perform at 5:30pm, followed by Studio K at 7:30.
  • Kid Zone Stage + Rovers will feature a variety of acts from clowns to musicians throughout both days of the festival. These performers can be located throughout the festival grounds and are not limited to Kid Zone Stage. Be on the lookout for musical performances from Sherrill Keever, Alan Darveaux, Jon Dana, Jeff Haslam, and Molly Barrett; Twist the Balloon Man; and Gravity Check Juggling.

Saturday, September 9:

  • The Sunrise Run will take place at Catawba Meadows Park, rain or shine. Registration for the 5k & 10k race is from 6:30-7:30 am with the race starting at 8:00 am. Registration for the 1 Mile Fun Run/Walk is from 8:00-9:00 am with the race starting at 9:30 am.
  • City Stage will feature performances from Andrew Combs (7:00-8:00pm), Taylor Hensley (8:00-8:30pm), and Brothers Osborne (8:30-10:00pm.)
  • Coors Light Stage will feature performances from Gotcha Groove (5:40-7:30pm) and Porch 40 (8:00-10:00pm).
  • Pepsi Stage will feature performances from Sandy Beach Shag Club (9:30 am), Lani Reece (10:30 am), Locobots (12:30 pm), Tumblemania (2:30 pm), Sherri’s School of Dance (3:30 pm), Debbie Huffman Dance Academy (4:30 pm), The Dance Factory (5:30 pm), and Studio K (6:30 pm).
  • Kid Zone Stage + Rovers will feature performances by Twist the Balloon Man, Mark Lippard, Gravity Check Juggling, along with an opportunity to meet Peppa Pig at the Chamber Commerce (10:30 am).

If you’re looking for more to do in Morganton, check out the Downtown Morganton restaurant scene. Morganton, one of the most charming mountain towns in North Carolina, is rich with small businesses and family-owned restaurants – including breweries, wineries, coffee shops, cafes, and more.

Root & Vine (139 West Union ST) combines scratch preparations with traditional French technique and southern practicalities to create delicious fare. They offer a full bar including 42 craft beers, 20+ bottled beers, 100+ wine offerings, and a unique list of cocktails.

Wisteria Gastropub (108 E Meeting ST) is a true farm-to-table experience where classic Southern cuisine meets fabulous new twists. Patrons can enjoy seasonally inspired menus with fresh meats and produce from locally owned farms and sustainable sources. A full bar, live music, and a light night bar is also offered.

Treat Restaurant and Bar (100 W Sterling ST) is known is known for its wide variety of menu offerings, served with a “layered eating” Tapas style flare. The restaurant and bar boasts a menu that features hand-crafted specials created and rotated seasonally, along with a hand-picked signature beer and wine selection. Be sure to check out these Morganton NC restaurants and more.

Morganton is located in Western North Carolina, and is part of the Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton Metropolitan Area. The mountain town is also conveniently located near one of the best gated mountain communities in the area, The Coves Mountain River Club. Only a twenty-minute drive away, Morganton’s close proximity to The Coves adds another venue to a fun and relaxing life in the foothills.

After a long day of riverside hiking along the Johns River or splashing in Coleton’s Swimming Hole, residents can sip wine or stroll through Evelyn’s Vineyard, and harvest their own fruits and veggies in Isabel’s Garden. Equestrians can also board their horses at the Round Mountain Ranch, where services include veterinary services and riding lessons, and ride them along scenic trails.

Come meet the neighbors, tour our beautiful mountain homes, check out the lifestyle amenities, and see what The Coves can offer you.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.

Tags: Festivals | Morganton

Sails Summer Concert Series – Toe Tapping Fun in Hickory NC

fun things to do in Hickory NC

Ah, summer! It’s the season we dream about all year long. Full of endless sun and limitless fun. In the mountains of Western North Carolina, this is the time of year when warm lazy days stretch on into cool starlit nights, painting the perfect setting for outdoor festivities with friends. This is the season for open-air gatherings. And nothing brings people together like live music!

If you’re one of the lucky ones visiting – or living — in the charming mountain towns of North Carolina this summer, you’ll no doubt want to visit Hickory, one of North Carolina’s most enticing summer destination spots. And you’ll definitely want to add the 5th Annual Sails Summer Concert Series to your list of not-to-be missed things to do in Hickory North Carolina on a Friday night.

What started out as “an idea for a modest little music series,” according to Sails Summer Concert Series founder Bob Sinclair, “has become a highly regarded musical event that attracts people from across the state.”

Each Friday in May, June, and September, friends old and new set up blankets and lawn chairs at the Sails on the Square – an outdoor venue the locals affectionately refer to as “Hickory’s downtown living room” – to sample live music from a variety of bands, singer/songwriters, and musical artists. This lineup of hand-picked talent ranges from Grammy winners to up-and-comers, from Hickory’s own to artists from cities and towns from across the United States. Performances start at 6:30 p.m., and the musical numbers keep playing on well past sunset.

Concert-goers are praising the 2017 lineup as “awesome,” “fantastic,” “an eclectic mix” of “top-shelf bands.” They love that the unique variety of music featured in the Sails Summer Concert Series has definite adult appeal but is also family friendly. This is just one reason the concert series keeps growing in popularity year after year, building on its own success with Hickory locals and mountain music-lovers across Western North Carolina.

Take a look at the lineup that’s yet to come in the 2017 series:

·       June 16: THE FRETLESS – musically eclectic maestros

·       June 23: CARAVAN OF THIEVES – rollicking mayhem

·       June 30: DANIELLE HOWLE – Miss amazing

·       Sept 1:   FREE PLANET RADIO – world music manifested

·       Sept 8:   BIG SANDY & HIS FLYRITE BOYS – Los Angeles rockabillyists

·       Sept 15:  WESTERN CENTURIES – newly imagined country, rhythm and Blues

·       Sept 22:  MILE TWELVE – new chambergrass darlings

·       Sept 29:  ADAM LEVY – guitar hero, song maker

This year, Olde Hickory Brewery and Silver Fork Winery will be selling beer and wine to concert goers in designated areas. And if you work up an appetite from all that dancing under the Sails, you’ll want to dip in to one of the nearby foodie-friendly restaurants, cafés, or gastropubs in beautiful Downtown Hickory.

If your idea of the perfect ending to a long, lazy summer week includes good food, good beer and wine (locally crafted!), and an evening of toe-tapping fun with your posse of mountain-loving friends, it’s time to head to Hickory and treat yourself to this series of vibrant, energetic, fresh, and inspiring music from distinctive bands throughout the region. Who knows… you may discover the next great act to sweep the nation, grab a Grammy, or appear on late-night TV. It’s been known to happen!

That’s because music in the mountains is a cherished part of the regional lifestyle. And while we love our traditional Blue Ridge style (bluegrass, jazz, country, rockabilly), we’re always on the lookout for new, homegrown talent. Over the years, this area has inspired some of the most prolific bluegrass artists and musicians in the United States. And it continues to influence a whole new generation of passionate musicians who find their muse in the majestic mountains of the Blue Ridge.

It’s the call of the mountains that attracts so many artists, musicians, and those of us who love all-things-beautiful-and-outdoorsy to explore North Carolina mountain real estate. Year after year, lured by the relaxing but vibrant mountain lifestyle, visitors and tourists turn into neighbors and friends. The custom-built luxury log homes of Hickory, the charming mountain homes near Asheville, and the gorgeous mountain-river properties in Lenoir all play a part in attracting people to the mountains and foothills of Western North Carolina. These gems of North Carolina mountain real estate have to be seen to be believed. They offer mountain living at its most glorious, and make the lure of the foothills almost impossible to resist.

Nestled along the Johns River adjacent to Wilson Creek – just an hour’s drive from Downtown Hickory – sits our gorgeous gated community called The Coves Mountain River Club. Talk about the best of both worlds! This is both mountain and river living, a rarity that’s truly coveted by nature lovers. Situated along 3,600 acres of flora-rich riverfront property, The Coves comes fully loaded with above-and-beyond amenities, including 39 miles of hiking and biking trails, a beautifully tended community garden and vineyard, an elegant equestrian center with handsomely groomed pastures, and a spectacular two-story mountaintop neighborhood lodge that offers jaw-dropping 360-degree views of the surrounding mountains, river, creeks, and waterfalls.

The Coves’ Pisgah Mountain Lodge has a wrap-around porch that welcomes neighbors to its wooden rocking chairs with the promise of a front-row seat to long-range views of Grandfather Mountain. This is the spot where folks will gather to talk about the live band they just heard in Downtown Hickory under The Sails, or share a story about that fabulous find from the antique store in Asheville. This is the place where memories are made. And it’s the place you’ll want to call home.

The Coves is ideally located in Lenoir, North Carolina in the Blue Ridge foothills, with easy access to surrounding mountain towns, including Hickory, Asheville, Blowing Rock, and Morganton.

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule your visit to The Coves. We can help you arrange an itinerary so your tour of The Coves coincides with your favorite band’s performance at the Sails Summer Concert Series!

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page complimentary Western North Carolina Visitor’s Guide which provides more information about living in the foothills.

Tags: Festivals | Hickory