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Longstreet Highroad Guide to the Tennessee Mountains

By Vernon and Cathy Summerlin

Design by Lenz, Inc. Decatur, Georgia.



Tennessee Mountains > Appendices > Special Events, Fairs, and Festivals

Special Events, Fairs, and Festivals

JANUARY

Wilderness Wildlife Week of Nature—More than 88 international experts in the fields of wildlife, conservation, and nature. Free hikes, lectures, displays, and demonstrations on a broad range of subjects. Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. Phone (800) 251-9100.

FEBRUARY

Annual Smoky Mountains Storytelling Festival—Some of the best storytellers anywhere. They can take you away with their words, and your imagination, to places far or near. Pigeon Forge Department of Tourism. Phone (800) 251-9100.

MARCH

Norris Dam's Annual Spring Wildflower Walks—Guided hikes along trails of the state park and TVA reservation will acquaint participants with the identification, natural history, and folklore of the beautiful display of spring wildflowers. March_April. Norris Dam State Park, Lake City. Phone (423) 426-7461.

APRIL

Dogwood Arts Festival—Knoxville. Its been called "the best 17 days of spring in America." It's one festival after another—arts and crafts, music and dance, sports, more than 60 miles of glorious dogwood trails, and fabulous garden tours. Dogwood Arts Festival Office. Phone (423) 637-4561.

Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community Spring Show—A welcome to springtime, featuring handmade arts and crafts by Craft Community members. Gatlinburg. Phone (423) 436-4448.

Loudon County Dogwood Festival—Includes beautiful gardens, mile run, fashion show, and other events. Also includes the Spring Festival at Loudon Valley Winery. Loudon County Beautification Board. Phone (423) 458-1987.

Annual Spring Wildflower Pilgrimage—A three-day program of wildflower walks, motorcades, and photographic tours in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Gatlinburg, Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Phone (423) 436-1262.

Annual Spring Fling—Celebrating the beauty of spring in beautiful downtown historic Rogersville. Includes arts, crafts, food, car show, gun/knife show, children's activities, and a chili cookoff. Historic downtown Rogersville. Rogersville/Hawkins County Chamber of Commerce. Phone (423) 272-2186.

Townsend in the Smokies Spring Festival—A celebration of spring with weekday wildflower walks, weekend story-telling, and a barbecue cook-off on the last Saturday of the festival. Begins the last weekend in April and continues through the first weekend in May. Bluegrass music on weekends. There are also arts and crafts demonstrations and old-fashioned kid games. Admission is free, and food and beverages are for sale. Townsend Visitors Center. Phone (423) 448-6134 or (800) 525-6834. www.smokymountains.org.

Spring Garden Fair—Gardeners will find acres of herbs, flowers, and related items, along with professional advice on the care and feeding of a wide variety of plants. Herbs, wildflowers, annuals, and garden crafts are available. Exchange Place, Kingsport. Phone (423) 288-6071.

MAY

The Cosby Ramp Festival—Huge dinner-on-the-ground, featuring the ramp, the "sweetest tasting, vilest smelling plant that grows." Held the first Sunday of May, festivities include gospel and country music, with large servings of ramps. Don't forget the mouthwash! Cosby. Contact Dr. Jack Clark. Phone (423) 623-5410

Annual Iris Festival—Juried arts & crafts show that also features a food court, entertainment stage, kid's korner, and premier wood carving show. Historic downtown Greeneville. Phone (423) 638-4111.

JUNE

Riverbend Festival—This nine-day event draws nearly half a million spectators each year. Features over 100 musical artists who perform on five stages including rock, country, blues, jazz, and folk. Other highlights include sporting events, family activities, fine arts exhibits, food, and a spectacular fireworks display. Ross's Landing, downtown Chattanooga. Phone (423) 265-4112 or (423) 756-2212.

Annual Rhododendron Festival—This festival focuses on the 600-acre garden of rhododendrons, the largest natural rhododendron gardens in the U.S., in full bloom atop Roan Mountain. Native arts and crafts, music, food festivals, beauty pageants, and wildlife tours. Roan Mountain State Park. Phone (423) 772-3303.

JULY

Kingsport Fun Fest—Over 150 events including hot-air balloon races, a beach party, block parties, celebrity entertainment, sports events, and much more. Fun Fest Office, Kingsport Chamber of Commerce. Phone (423) 392-8800.

AUGUST

Cherokee Days of Recognition—The festival features native dance, games, crafts, and food. Red Clay State Historic Park, Cleveland. Phone (423) 478-0339.

African American Cultural Festival—Local dancers, writers, and musical entertainment including choral, gospel, and jazz. African marketplace with clothing, food, jewelry, crafts, drama, and other special attractions. Miller Plaza, Chattanooga. Chattanooga African American Museum. Phone (423) 267-1076.

SEPTEMBER

Scott County Sorghum Festival—An Old Fashioned Stir-Off, sorghum making by the Mennonites. Horses pull the mill that squeezes the juice from the stalks that are boiled, gradually turning the stalks into a thick, golden colored, delicious sorghum syrup. Scott County Chamber of Commerce. Phone (423) 569-6900 or (800) 645-6905.

Fall Folk Arts Festival, Kingsport—This crafts show is held during a special, open house weekend at the Exchange Place Historic Site. Phone (423) 288-6071.

OCTOBER

National Storytelling Festival—A three-day celebration that showcases storytellers, stories, and traditions from across America and around the world. National Storytelling Association, Jonesborough. Phone (423) 753-2171.

Standing Stone Celebration—During this event, members of the Cherokee nation of Oklahoma make their annual pilgrimage to Monterey's Whittaker Park, site of ancient worship grounds. A ceremony commemorating the forced marches of the Cherokees from Georgia to Oklahoma in 1838_1839, includes laying a corn wreath on the Standing Stone Monument. Phone (931) 528-8350.

Heritage Days—Historic Downtown Rogersville. Harvest festival, arts and crafts, food, entertainment, children's activities, quilt show, demonstrations, parade, and antique car show. Phone (423) 272-1961.

NOVEMBER

Smoky Mountain Christmas—Over a million lights plus spectacular holiday shows transform Dollywood into a winter wonderland for a traditional, old-fashioned holiday celebration. Special holiday food and attractions also highlight this celebration. Dollywood, Pigeon Forge. Phone (423) 428-9488 or (800) Dollywood.

Rock City's Enchanted Garden of Lights—Over a quarter of a million twinkling bulbs used to create more than 30 holiday scenes. November_January. Rock City, Chattanooga. Phone (706) 820-2531.

DECEMBER

Christmas in Olde Jonesborough—An old-fashioned Christmas celebration with events all month long. Includes tour of homes, special museum exhibits, a parade, recipe swap, Christmas tree exhibit, and traditionally decorated streets. Jonesborough Visitor Center. Phone (423) 753-5961.

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Published (print): 1999, Published (Web): January 2003, ISBN: 1-56352-475-9
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