What’s Cooking at The Coves NC

Cook-Offs at Pisgah Mountain Lodge

There’s nothing like a cook-off to bring the North Carolina mountain communities together to share comforting food and conversation. Whether you relish a cooking competition for a chance to up your culinary game, or you simply want to dig into the most satisfying and savory creations, gathering at a cook-off will soon be one of your favorite past times.  No wonder this tradition has captured the culinary heart of our country since the 1950s when they first began as social gatherings to raise funds or provide a little low-key competition.   

You’ve more than likely heard of BBQ, chili, steak, corn bread, chowder, cowboy, black pot, seafood, and gumbo cook-offs from coast to coast.  Magazines like Southern Living even have chef’s comfort food cook-offs with ten most celebrated chefs sharing their most satisfying recipes. Restaurants have become hooked on the concept as well, since it’s a natural way to drum up business while letting the public judge which chef serves up the most delectable recipe. 

Plenty of folks who enjoy the good life in their fabulous NC mountain homes at The Coves have faithfully attended the seasonal cook-offs, spaced perfectly throughout the year to ensure not too much time goes by without a sweet celebration with friends, family and neighbors.  Whether its inside by a fire or from the veranda overlooking our infinity-view swimming pool, hanging out at Pisgah Mountain Lodge is always a pleasure. And for folks thinking about building a home in the mountains, the five Coves Cook-Offs are the perfect chance to experience the friendliness of our mountain community and enjoy Pisgah Lodge.

Check out The Coves Cook-Off calendar for 2018:

• March 17th Saturday 1-4pm International Cook-Off

This year instead of the annual Italian cook-off, one of the finest North Carolina mountain communities are trying something even more challenging—now folks at The Coves have culinary choices from around the world to bring to the lodge. The cooking options will be as limitless as our appetites. Prepare your finest international fare if you dare. Sides and desserts are more than welcome to accompany our main dishes. Come hungry, come willing to sample unique dishes, and don’t forget to wear your green for St. Patrick’s Day.  And for those of you who attended in the past, you’ll be jazzed to know musician Bobby Steadman will be returning to perform and provide the perfect accompaniment to the scenic backdrop of the Blue Mountains.

• June 16th Saturday 1-4 pm Rib Cook-Off

If you’re busy building a home in the mountains, you’ve most certainly heard of the fierce competition at our annual Rib Cook-Off at The Coves. No one leaves this event feeling hungry.  Many who are not up for the rib challenge bring along their family-pleasing sides.  The mouth-watering aroma of the lodge will linger in your mind long after the cook-off has passed.  Bring your friends, your family and your appetites. This event is finger licking good.

• August 18th Saturday 1-4 pm  Side Dish Cook-Off

Join us at The Coves Mountain River Club for our annual Side Dish Cook-Off. This is the opportunity to show off your scrumptious recipes that have been in your family for generations.  Do you believe your great grandmother’s corn bread stuffing, or maybe your aunt’s garlic mashed potatoes that bring your dinner guests back for seconds can steal the show?  Bring your family’s famous side dish for a chance to win first prize.

• October 20th Saturday 1-4pm Chowder Cook-Off

Those who live in the North Carolina mountain communities know when autumn has arrived.  There’s an invigorating crispness in the air and the leaves begin their colorful turn.  This is the time of year for warm comfort food, and chowder is one of the first meals that comes to mind.  This fall don’t miss our Chowder Cook-Off on the summit inside our Pisgah Mountain Lodge.  Maybe you’ll be lucky enough not only to leave with a satiated appetite but also with a prize for the most superb chowder recipe.

• December 8th Saturday 1-4pm Chili & Apple Cook-Off

As we move into the holiday season, we don’t need much reason to come together for a hearty bowl of chili followed by a slice of sweet apple pie.  Please join us for our Annual Chili and Apple Pie Cook Off. The mountain views will put you in the holiday spirit alongside your neighbors good cheer and awesome food.  There will be prizes awarded for the most delicious Chili and Apple Pie recipes.

The Coves residents are outstanding cooks who adore their NC mountain homes are more than willing to share tried and true family recipes while they take in the mesmerizing views at Pisgah Mountain Lodge, a spacious 6000 square foot clubhouse graced by an 8000 square foot veranda at 1,700 feet. 

These five annual events are an opportunity to meet new friends and taste new food while taking in the spectacular views of the Blue Ridge Mountains–including Grandfather Mountain, Table Rock, Hawks Bill, and the Wilson Creek Gorge. Celebrations of food, culture and music are among the favorite things those who live in NC mountain homes adore.  Take that first step to learn more about building a home in the mountains and see why The Coves spectacular location is one of a kind.

RSVP for any of the Cook-Offs by calling 828.754.0700. 

Tags: Events At The Coves | Lenoir

Why Buyers Are Choosing New Over Resales

building a mountain home

If you’ve spent time in the mountains in North Carolina, then you have most certainly come to understand the Blue Ridge Dream. How the mountains have inspired generation after generation to put down their roots in the cozy mountain towns that keep the pulse of the America strong.  Folks who are building a mountain home have no doubt that this majestic region in Western North Carolina is where they need to be, for a higher quality of life and sense of wellbeing. 

National forests such as Pisgah and Nantahala National Forest are the perfect protective buffers for the mountains, and add to the serene beauty of the region with healthy rivers, wildlife and lush plants and trees. Wilson Creek is found in Pisgah Forest. The waterway system originates at Grandfather Mountain and falls down into the Johns River at The Coves. These natural wonders are just some of the reasons people searching for NC mountain land for sale choose the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Building a mountain home in Western North Carolina is the Blue Ridge Dream. Why these dreamers are opting to settle into a new home as opposed to a resale is easy to grasp.  Once they have found that idyllic North Carolina mountain real estate, maybe tucked into a hillside with plenty of acreage for their horses to roam or perched up high with long range views to inspire friends and family as they gather for a home cooked meal, life becomes more peaceful. This is the mountain paradise residents at The Coves have come to know.

When building a mountain home, this gives one the creative freedom of being able to customize from the ground floor up. How many times have we walked through a resale, creating a mental check list of all the things you will need to live with, modify, or completely redo?  This is not the case when you design your own home, ensuring everything from the closet space to the laundry room, to the plug and play, conveniently wired throughout the house, are exactly right.

There are many reasons why interest in building new North Carolina mountain real estate has gained in popularity. Those of us who live in the mountains consciously care about our environment.  We want to protect what we love for future generations, and this means building mountain homes that are incredibly kind to our environment. It includes the use of natural elements and reclaimed materials such as metal, wood and stone.

With each passing year we gain more knowledge and more ability to decrease our impact, by using the right materials, choosing efficient state-of-the-art appliances, and designing our spaces maximizing nature—like the magic of southern exposure, or a wrap around porch and strategically-placed awnings.  There’s nothing like living the perfect life while minimizing our carbon footprint. Using nontoxic building materials has become more important than ever.      

And being environmentally conscious has other rewards.  All the up-to-date technology, efficient appliances, and careful design have a positive effect on your finances.  Your heating and cooling costs will be lessened, and your operating costs will be noticeably lower, leaving your family the funds to spend on that long-talked about vacation, or to sink into those hobbies you’ve put off for so long.

The savings don’t end there…which is another factor encouraging folks to find the perfect NC mountain land for sale so they, too, can begin the building process.  Once you are settled into your dream home, the furnishing is complete,  and the landscaping looks as though it’s been there for many seasons, you may be surprised when you notice your home owner’s insurance has dropped significantly.  Why would newer construction be less to insure?  Stricter codes and building regulations—things you don’t have to worry about that are taken care of along the way.    

Come visit The Coves as you search for NC mountain land for sale. Meet our professional building team that can be by your side to help you budget, design and build your own dream home in a mountain community that’s second to none.

Explore our waterfalls, hike our trails, kayaking in the Johns River or gaze at the sunset from the veranda of our mountaintop lodge.

Call us 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour.

Tags: Home Building | Lenoir

Caldwell Senior Center – More Ways to Enjoy Retirement

lifelong learning courses

Retirees looking for things to do in Lenoir NC and in the North Carolina mountain communities are pleasantly surprised by the wide range of learning opportunities available to them at Caldwell Senior Center in the foothills of Western North Carolina. Yes, it’s like going back to school.

Unlike previous generations, most seniors today don’t see reaching their sixties as a signal to embrace a sedentary lifestyle.  To the contrary. In fact, many believe today’s 60 year old is the new 50. And this new found freedom at retirement provides them a chance to pursue interests both old and new, hone their skills, and – most important of all – to keep their minds active and sharp.  From taking up new hobbies to downsizing into efficient tiny houses, this modern time creates incredible opportunities for seniors.

Shattering the stereotypes of decades past, older boomers these days are more active and engaged.  They’ve already realized many of the benefits of computers, smartphones and other devices and social platforms that have enhanced our daily lives. And if there’s a way to become more proficient at using them, they’re ready to take on the challenge. Fortunately Caldwell Senior Center has computers available for use, and one-on-one tutoring that can be arranged by appointment. And the center offers more.

No matter what our age, dancing is both invigorating and good for the body and soul.  Maybe you’ve watched line dancers and thought that “some day” you’d love to learn those moves and get in on the fun.  Well, now’s your chance.  The good news is that we’re never too old to line dance.  Even better news is that beginner line dancing classes are ours to enjoy at Caldwell Senior Center, with the option of participating in intermediate and advanced groups as we continue.

We’re told throughout our adult lives how important it is to get sufficient exercise.  But for many of us, the pressures of work and family obligations make that task difficult if not impossible to accomplish.  And so we fail to realize the satisfaction that comes with pushing oneself to achieve physical goals, the endorphin rush that comes from surpassing our self-perceived limitations, and the countless rewards of maintaining optimal health.  Luckily, it’s never too late to start.  Exercise isn’t the exclusive province of the young.  We all see stories of people in their retirement years who start training to run marathons and competitive sports to participate in the National Senior Games.

What’s your preference?  Yoga?  Low impact aerobics?  How about strength training using hand weights, plus stretching and balance exercises?  The range of choices you’ll find at Caldwell Senior Center allows you to start slowly and and take on more as you progress toward reaching your optimal energy level.

Let’s talk about the word “can’t”.  It’s just doesn’t apply here.  We have so many things to do in the North Carolina mountain communities like The Coves Mountain River Club. How about woodcarving?  Oil painting?  Singing?  Of course you can!  Take that first crucial step by joining a class at Caldwell Senior Center in Lenoir…and surprise yourself.

Be sure to visit the Center’s web site to see all of the exciting events coming up.  There are also plenty of resources there for useful information and assistance, in addition to a complete list of classes you can take.  Just contact them anytime Monday through Friday from nine A. M. to five P. M. if you want more information.

When you visit us at The Coves Mountain River Club, you’ll get a good idea of what others have done, and our expert design team can show you how best to make your dreams come true. Be sure to check out our new tiny houses collection.

In the foothills of Western North Carolina, senior living means having more choices, not fewer.  From the vibrant Caldwell Senior Center to the many invigorating outdoor activities to the fascinating local culture to the chances for continuing education, the years you spend here can be the very best ones of your life!

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour of The Coves.  

Tags: Lenoir

The Mountain of Youth at The Coves

wellness NC mountain communities

An active lifestyle is important at any age but at retirement, it becomes crucial to maintain the highest quality of life into our golden years. Once we stop working, if we stop moving, it reduces our stamina. Exercise feels good and is important because it can ease symptoms of chronic conditions, and delay, and even prevent, disease. People who stay active have healthier immune systems, blood pressure levels, and are at less of a risk for heart disease or osteoporosis.

Simply going for a hike in the woods or mountain bike ride may be all it takes to reduce your risk of stroke or heart attack and prevent falls. Hiking also benefits us mentally by improving the quality of sleep and boosting our mood and self-confidence. And what better place to enjoy the great outdoors than in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina. There are so many fabulous hikes near Asheville NC than you can explore 365 days a year.

At one of the most beautiful NC mountain communities near Blowing Rock, The Coves Mountain River Club is the place to hike along the slow moving Johns River which originates from Grandfather Mountain. It’s the place to breathe in fresh air and let the sound of rushing water put you at ease. Kayaking and canoeing are also popular to enjoy an epic river adventure.

The riverfront trail leads to Coleton’s Swimming Hole, an old-fashioned swimming hole with a rope swing. There are also four cascading waterfalls along the trails.  All in all, The Coves has 39 miles of groomed mountain hiking trails surrounding all the stunning North Carolina mountain homes within the neighborhood.

The Johns River is just one of the many wellness amenities that residents enjoy at The Coves. Here’s a quick over of all the amenities:


  • Gated Entrance
  • 6,000 Square Foot Mountaintop Lodge
  • Infinity-view Saline Swimming Pool & Hot Tub
  • Modern Fitness Center
  • Full Service Equestrian Center
  • 39 Miles of Hiking & Horse Trails
  • Four Waterfalls and Community Parks
  • Two Community Gardens
  • Five Miles of River Frontage on the Johns River

If you’re searching for the fountain of youth, come experience our mountain of youth at The Coves.

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: Greenways & Trails | Lenoir

10 Energy Efficient Products For Your New Home

building a mountain home

When you’re building a mountain home, you’ll want to incorporate as many energy-efficient products and features as possible.  It makes sense from a cost-saving standpoint and helps to reduce your personal footprint in terms of our environment.  Living at The Coves Mountain River Club, in the pristine Blue Ridge foothills, you will become acutely aware of nature – both its beauty and its fragility.  Gated communities near Asheville NC are designed to take full advantage of their surroundings without having a negative impact.

Let’s explore some of the ways North Carolina mountain homes are employing the latest energy-saving technology.

  • Radiant Barrier Roof Sheathing – A layer of aluminum is placed in the airspace between the heat-radiating surface inside and the heat-absorbing surface outside.  The foil used in the  sheathing keeps up to 97% of the radiant heat from passing through to your attic. In the heat of the summer, having a radiant barrier roof will keep your home up to 30% cooler.  And the hotter it gets, the better it works.
  • Roof Insulation –  Simply stated, insulation is the most practical and cost-effective way to make a house more energy-efficient.  Without it, you can lose up to half of your heated or cooled air through leakage.  Proper and sufficient insulation can improve the effectiveness of  your HVAC system by up to 80 per cent.  Another benefit can be less condensation in your home.  This, in turn, provides health benefits by reducing the dampness that allows mold to develop.
  • Insulated Doors/Windows – Your home’s exterior doors and windows can contribute significantly to air leakage through conduction.  It’s important that they be insulated and air sealed. The use of weatherstripping can reduce energy loss.  Many exterior doors have a steel skin with a polyurethane foam insulation core, plus a magnetic strip to ensure a tight seal when they’re closed.  They don’t need weatherstripping if they’re installed correctly.  And modern glass patio doors with metal frames have a plastic insulator between inner and outer parts of the frame that serves as a thermal break.
  • Heating/Air Conditioning Systems – More than half of the energy used in a typical home is for heating and cooling.  That’s why making the right decisions regarding your HVAC system when building a mountain home will have a major impact upon your utility bills—and your level of comfort.  High efficiency systems can provide consistent air flow throughout your home, which translates to better regulated temperature.  An experienced contractor can recommend other useful steps, such as making sure your vents are sealed properly and insulating your system’s components.
  • Low Emissivity Glass – Low-E glass filters the specific 310-380 nanometer wavelength that is the frequency pathway of ultraviolet (UV) light.   It has no effect upon visibility or brightness, but it does work to protect your furnishings from fading and deterioration.  And, the coating that covers the surface provides an enhanced layer of protection again damage from micro-abrasive material like dust or sand.  So your windows will remain clear longer.  It also prevents water particles from sticking to the glass surface and leaving residue that has to be cleaned off.
  • Instant Hot Water Heaters – The lifespan of a tankless water heater can be up to twice as long as a conventional storage-type unit.  It can reduce your water heating energy costs by 10 to 15 per cent, because there’s no standby loss from the tank and piping.  The risk of tank leaks and water damage is eliminated.  And, because your hot water arrives immediately where it’s needed, there’s none of the time and waste associated with running a faucet or shower while you’re waiting for it. 
  • Dual Flush Toilets – Among the modern energy-saving improvements such as low-flow plumbing and fixtures, dual flush toilets stand out for their environmental impact, cost savings and ease of upkeep.  They’re found in many of the gated communities near Asheville NC, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that they save the average residential household 4,000 gallons of water each year.  The name comes from the fact that there are two mechanisms that allow you to select either a low volume flush for liquid or a higher volume flush for solid waste.
  • Programmable Thermostats – Using a programmable thermostat with your heating, ventilation and air conditioning unit offers many benefits to your wallet and your level of comfort.  They’re quickly becoming the standard in homes across the nation.  You can create a schedule that’s consistent with your routine.  When you’re at home, it keeps the temperature at your exact desired level of warmth or coolness.  But when you’re not there, the setting changes to keep you from heating or air conditioning a vacant space. 
  • Energy-Saving Lighting – The cost of new LED bulbs continues to drop, and there’s now a wide variety available for use in the home.  They require quite a bit less energy to operate than old-style incandescent bulbs and last a great deal longer.  The initial higher cost is easily recouped over time.  LED bulbs don’t heat up, so they don’t affect your room temperature.  And, because they’re solid and have no filament, they hold up well against jarring and bumping.

Our beautiful North Carolina mountain homes are ideal for discriminating buyers who want to minimize their environmental impact, enjoy a better quality of life and achieve significant savings in the process. Coming soon – watch for our new collection of tiny houses.

We invite you to stop by for a tour when you’re in the area.  Let us show you all the many benefits of living well here at The Coves Mountain River Club.

Call us at 828.754.0700 to schedule a tour!

Tags: Home Building | Lenoir

Spring 2018 – Lifelong Learning Courses in Lenoir NC

classes in Lenoir NC

For many people who are considering our mountain towns in North Carolina as a place for retirement, one of the factors affecting their final decision is the availability of adult education classes.  They’re aware that the key to maintaining a sharp mind well into their golden years is regular mental stimulation, much as exercise works to maintain the body’s flexibility, and lifetime learning after retirement affords them the time and opportunity to pursue existing interests and develop new ones. 

When you can choose the subjects you study, going to school is a lot more fun.  And, it’s a great way to develop friendships with like-minded people.  For senior citizens, attending Catawba Valley Community College has the additional benefit of providing interaction with young people, which has proven to be another way to stay engaged and mentally active.

In addition to all the things to do in Lenoir NC, a short drive to Hickory (less than 30 minutes) offers the retiree an intriguing array of class options at Catawba Valley Community College (CVCC).  There are a total of more than 100 different programs, ranging from basic reading and writing courses to specific vocational and technical training to personal enrichment through cultural studies.

Our beautiful scenic panorama here in the foothills may lead you to pursue arts or crafts in one of their many forms or hone your photography skills.  Coming from a city environment, you’ll notice right away that our sky is much more clear than what you’re accustomed to.  Living under such an awe-inspiring blanket of stars, you may want to consider learning more about astronomy at CVCC. 

And anyone who loves to cook can find a number of culinary courses to choose from.  There are also many music appreciation classes for your enjoyment.  Other popular options for retirees include beginning golf, line dancing, basic and advanced computer skills, and personal development opportunities such as yoga.

Retirees who settle into our mountain lifestyle in one of the gated communities near Asheville often find themselves developing an interest in local sports.  CVCC has competitive women’s volleyball and men’s basketball teams you may enjoy following if you live at The Coves.

Did you know, if you’re a citizen age 65 or older and a legal resident of North Carolina, you’re eligible for a waiver of tuition charges for up to six hours of credit instruction and one non-credit instruction per academic semester at community colleges? And CVCC Student Services has information for veterans who may want to use their education benefits.  You can get details about the application process and find out which programs of study are eligible. 

Visit the CVCC web site for complete details or you can call (828) 327-7000 for more information.  The Spring 2018 schedule starts soon.

The above list is just a sample of the many courses available for your lifelong learning adventure.  So rest assured that you can leave the stresses of the big city behind, move to one of the mountain towns in North Carolina and still take advantage of what a quality educational institution has to offer. 

Living at The Coves Mountain River Club, you’ll have easy access to all the things to do in Lenoir NC and the surrounding area.  We’re just a short drive from the picturesque mountain village of Blowing Rock, the magnificent Pisgah National Forest, and Wilson Creek Gorge, a federally-designated wild and scenic river.  And of course there are plenty of boating, fishing, hiking, biking and other outdoor activities to take advantage of.

With unbelievably low prices on custom-built homes, cottages, home sites and estate properties, The Coves Mountain River Club has welcomed many prospective buyers looking at gated communities near Asheville for the ideal retirement destination. 

When you’re near Lenoir, be sure to stop by for a tour.  Enjoy a free glass of wine and watch the sun set over the mountains.  In perfect moments like that, it’s easy to imagine yourself waking up each day in the midst of some of Western North Carolina’s most magnificent views.

If you’re exploring the area for the first time, ask for our 84 page Complimentary Magazine

Tags: Lenoir