What we know as fiddling dates back to the eighteenth century in the British Isles, where the baroque violin and popular folk melodies came together to create an entirely new type of instrumental tune. When people emigrated to settle in the Appalachians region of the United States, they brought their music with them. And today’s folk fiddlers continue the tradition, composing and performing thousands of tunes that pay homage to those early models.
Here in the Blue Ridge Mountains, fiddling was an important part of many events, including barn raisings, husking bees, weddings, shivarees, weddings, wakes and other functions. And, of course, most of the community would turn out for each week’s Saturday night dance, an iconic feature of the rural South.
Today, the list of things to do in Blowing Rock NC, and other local communities includes opportunities to hear local and traveling artists play those old and new fiddle tunes that stir the spirit and get the toes a-tappin’. And there’s no better time to do it than Labor Day Weekend, when the annual Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention comes to Lenoir and the music echoes through the mountains.
It’s three days of competition, performances and workshops, managed for the last fifteen years on a volunteer basis by a sub-committee of the Caldwell County Arts Council. They’re committed to promoting our cultural heritage in a way that provides wholesome family activities and protects our community values.
The Happy Valley Fiddlers Convention is a non-profit event with low admission fees, and all funds beyond those necessary to ensure its continuation go to youth scholarships and music programs that preserve traditional bluegrass music, dance and instrument-making activities.
Historic Happy Valley is the popular name for the North Carolina mountain real estate comprising the Upper Yadkin River Valley in Caldwell and Wilkes counties, a fertile area that’s been cultivated since the 18th century. Many farmers in the Valley today are descendants of these early families, and a significant amount of land bordering the river is still used for grazing cattle and cultivating corn and hay.
Some residents continue occupations that are holdovers from earlier generations, such as training and working draft animals, cultivating “heritage” vegetables and fruits, and building old-style pole and log barns and outbuildings. In addition to its music traditions, Historic Happy Valley is home to quilters, woodworkers and other craft artists, painters, and storytellers. The Valley is also the location of 13 sites on the National Register of Historic Places, including The Patterson School Historic District, which is one of only two rural historic districts in North Carolina.
Families who own mountain homes near Asheville have myriad opportunities to immerse themselves in our area’s rich history. In fact, for many that’s one of the main things that brought them here to live.
We at The Coves Mountain River Club know the value of having so much of our heritage nearby to study and enjoy. Whether it’s looking for things to do in Blowing Rock NC or exploring mountain trails or enjoying our wonderful parks and waterways, you’re always aware and respectful of the fact that thousands of earlier settlers walked the same paths and called the Blue Ridge foothills home.
Quality North Carolina mountain real estate developments such as our respect the land and its heritage, while offering all of the features, amenities and comforts of modern life.
While you’re touring mountain homes near Asheville, we invite you to come to Lenoir and let us show you around our property. We’re situated on five miles of beautiful Johns River waterfront near Wilson Creek and Pisgah National Forest. Our amenities include a mountaintop lodge with an infinity-view swimming pool, award winning hiking trails, two community gardens and more.
Call us now at 828.754.0700 to schedule a visit!