The Dance of the Fireflies

Elkmont Fireflies; Image provided by Judd Patterson Our friends over at Wildwater Rafting have given us all the details surrounding the annual synchronized firefly show in the Smoky Mountains. If you are interested in no-cost wholesome entertainment that most people in the world have not experienced, this is truly an event that should not be missed! There are only two places on earth where you can experience a synchronized firefly phenomenon - southeast Asia and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The peak flashing for synchronous fireflies (Photinus carolinus) that live in Great Smoky Mountains National Park occurs for only two weeks in mid-June. The Male's time is short since they live as adults for only about 21 days. So they have a limited amount of time to attract the … [Read more...]

Parkway Fishing Vacation Giveaway

Our friends over at Virtual Blue Ridge are hosting yet another fun-filled vacation giveaway this summer, and this time, they are providing the lucky winner with gas. The 2008 Parkway Fishing Vacation Giveaway is sure to showcase the region's great outdoors, even if it’s just for a weekend. Starting this weekend, people can visit www.virtualblueridge.com for their chance to win this incredible vacation package valued at $886.87. By partnering with Foscoe Fishing Company, the lucky winner and a friend can enjoy a half-day wade trip for two. This trip will take both people to wild and hatchery supported trout rivers and streams in the North Carolina High Country. The Foscoe Fishing Company guides are trained to help novices and experts alike and will make your experience even more … [Read more...]

Springs Events at the Biltmore

Biltmore in the spring photo uploaded by jarnocan Although Biltmore is open 365 days a year, spring is one of the best times to visit the estate. Encompassing 8,000 acres of lush landscaping and lavish architecture, Biltmore both impress and inspires visitors from all over the world. From now until May 18, visitors can enjoy the Festival of Flowers, an annual event showcasing hundreds of azaleas in a dazzling array of colors and hues. Plus, enjoy live music on Saturdays and Sundays 11:30 am-3:30 pm in the garden. You can also take a self-guided tours of the gardens, which is included with estate admission. In addition, the Biltmore is offering free admission to Moms on Sunday, May 11 with the purchase of a youth or adult ticket. Starting May 30, the Biltmore will host a new … [Read more...]

Jazz After 5 at Grove Arcade

Jazz photo uploaded by Geoff Coe If you're visiting Blue Ridge this weekend, then stop in at Grove Arcade from 5-8 pm on Friday, April 18 to enjoy free live jazz music performed by The Golden Quartet and Dave Perkins Certified Organic. This Friday performance is the final Jazz After 5 concert for 2008, and local restaurants will offer beer, wine, and appetizers for purchase. Sponsorship for the Jazz After 5 series is provided by LandDesign, News Radio 570 WWNC, 880AM The Revolution, Fosters Group, and Empire Distributors of North Carolina. Other upcoming events at the Grove Arcade include the Grove Arcade Flower Show April 26-27 and the Laura Boosinger & Josh Goforth CD Release Party on June 1. … [Read more...]

Flowers of North Carolina

It's time to celebrate the beginning of Spring in North Carolina! I'm sure you'd love to take some pictures of your trip along the Blue Ridge Parkway, complete with flowering blossoms. Thanks to the Blue Ridge Parkway Association,  this handy bloom schedule will let you know what's flowering and where it's located along the road. You'll see everything from Mayapples and Dogwood to Flame Azaleas and White Rhododendrons. Be sure to keep your eye out for beautiful flora at your favorite attractions as well, like the flower pictured in this post, found at the Biltmore Estate. We'd love to hear which flower you'd like to see during your travels, so let us know in a comment! … [Read more...]

A Better Way to See Blue Ridge

River rafting photo courtesy of Nantahala Outdoor Center Ever since the Go Blue Ridge Card launched last spring, we've been working on ways to improve the product, making it even easier and more affordable to explore the Blue Ridge Parkway. We've added a couple of new attractions, including French Broad River Rafting with Nantahala Outdoor Center (pictured above) and LaZoom Comedy Tours of Asheville. But I think the biggest improvement has been letting visitors use their cards on non-consecutive days, making it even more flexible and convenient. Whether you're purchasing 2, 3, or 5 days, you'll be able to visit attractions in any combination of days during a two week period. For instance, if you purchased a 3-day card, you might choose to activate it on a Monday, then pick any days … [Read more...]

Tweetsie Railroad Rebuilds After Fire

Tweetsie Railroad photo uploaded by Shaggy Paul Despite a fire on Sunday, March 16 that destroyed much of the Tweetie Railroad's collection of train memorabilia, tools, and photos, the Blowing Rock attraction plans to open for its 51st year on May 2, as originally scheduled. The old-fashioned park Tweetsie Railroad holds an extensive archive dating back to the 1880s, so many of those pieces will be on display when the museum reopens. Train collectors have also offered items from their personal collections to fill the void left by the fire. The Carolina's first family Wild West Adventure theme park, Tweetsie Railroad opened a year after Disneyland and has since hosted generations of visitors with its fun, imaginative activities. Guests can role play as a cowboy, cowgirl, or a train … [Read more...]

Grove Arcade Presents Jazz After 5

Grove Arcade photo uploaded by Bill in Ash Vegas This Friday, March 21, Grove Arcade hosts Jazz After 5. This fun free event runs from 5-8 pm on Friday evening and features beer, wine, and hors d'oeuvres from local restaurants, as well as live music performances. This month's program includes performances of cool jazz by Origins and Done for the Evening. While at Grove Arcade, stop by the ARTS & Heritage Gallery and show your Go Blue Ridge Card for a free copy of the self-guided Architectural and Historical Tour of the Grove Arcade with each $30 purchase. … [Read more...]

LaZoom Comedy Tours of Asheville

Photo courtesy of La Zoom Tours If you're looking for something unique to do during your trip to Asheville, look no further than LaZoom Comedy Tours of Asheville! Started by Jim and Jen Lauzon, this tour provides visitors with a historical tour of Asheville with a special twist of zany entertainment. This 40 seat purple bus runs every day of the week, complete with history, comedy skits, musical acts, and captivating stories. You'll learn about everyone from George Vanderbilt to Edwin Wiley Grove and learn how Asheville grew into the charming city it is today. … [Read more...]

Spring in the Blue Ridge Parkway

Flowers along the Blue Ridge Parkway Photo uploaded by Angelrays Spring is fast approaching in the Blue Ridge Parkway. Blue Ridge visitor centers have announced their open dates for spring 2008, and several of our Blue Ridge area attractions will be opening soon. Nantahala Outdoor Center (NOC) and Lake Lure Tours open in mid-March, while Rose Creek Mine and Smoky Mountain Jet Boats open in April. Check out our full list of seasonal attractions. … [Read more...]