Smoky Mountain Region Travel Advisories

Smoky Mountain travel advisorySmoky Mountain Region Travel Advisories. Upcoming Single-Lane Closure on Southbound Spur between Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park will temporarily close a single land on the southbound Spur between the Flat Branch intersection and the Gatlinburg Welcome Center Tuesday, June 26 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The closure of the right-hand lane is necessary to make repairs to the guard rail. The roadway will remain open, but motorists should expect delays with the single-lane closure.

Visitors can also expect delays when traveling from Asheville N.C. to Cherokee N.C. along Blue Ridge Parkway. Work underway to repave a portion of the Blue Ridge Parkway between Asheville and Cherokee N.C. will cause lane closures and traffic delays, according to a spokesperson for the project.

Currently the “pavement Preservation” project, which began June 18, is between Mileposts 393 and Milepost 413. The total project will involve more than 65 miles between Milepost 359 to where the well-traveled road ends at Milepost 469 in Cherokee. Expect single lane closures, flaggers and traffic delays during the paving project which is expected to last until mid-to late-July. The $4 million project, funded through the Federal Highway Administration, is an effort to upgrade the scenic road which draws some 16.1 million visitors a year and was originally constructed more than 80 years ago.

In a related issue a landslide closed a portion N.C. Highway 9.
North Carolina state transportation officials say it will take until the end of July to clear the massive landslide which closed part of N.C. Highway 9. The N.C. Department of Transportation said that more than 110,000 cubic yards of dirt and rock slid into the road on June 5 and indicated that the target date to reopen the road is July 27. The slide, located about a mile north of U.S. 74-A near the Buncombe-Henderson County lines, covers only about 100 feet of roadway but has created a 50-mile detour. An NCDOT spokesman says that workers are on-site and working from sunrise to sunset daily.

Cades Cove Storytelling

Cades Cove stortytelling

Don’t miss this chance to enjoy a master storyteller in beautiful Cades Cove!

Cades Cove Storytelling. Great Smoky Mountains National Park Cherokee Storytelling Series in Cades Cove.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park invites the public to join master Cherokee storyteller Kathi Littlejohn in Cades Cove for a series of engaging storytelling sessions. Make plans to enjoy this Smoky Mountain special event Saturday, July 14 at 8:00 p.m. at the Cades Cove Campground Amphitheater.

Kathi, a member of the Eastern Band of Cherokee, has shared her stories since 1986. She is well known for delivering her stories in a dramatic fashion. Her entertaining, expressive and down-to-earth style is a pleasure to hear. Another storytelling sessions will be held on Thursday, August 2 from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. at the Cades Cove Visitor Center area near Cable Mill.

Kathi is a board member of the NC Folklore Association and was a featured artist at the 2017 Solar Eclipse Event at Clingmans Dome. The National American Indian Museum in Washington, D.C., Colonial Williamsburg in VA, and the Museum of Cherokee Indian in NC have enjoyed Kathi’s yarns. Kathi was featured in “Living Stories of the Cherokee,” an award winning collection of stories published by the University of North Carolina Press. She is regularly consulted by universities, organizations, and schools for her cultural knowledge.

For more information about the program, please contact Park Ranger Beth Bramhall at 865-448-4123.

Biltmore Estate Chihuly Glass Exhibit

Chihuly Biltmore Exhibit

Biltmore Estate must be experienced to be believed! Photo credit – Biltmore Estate.

Biltmore Estate Chihuly Glass Exhibit. Chihuly glass creations brighten the day and light up the night during Chihuly at Biltmore.
Famed glass artist Dale Chihuly brings his incredible sculptures to Biltmore Estate during May – October.

Chihuly’s fabulous glass creations, Biltmore’s first ever outdoor art exhibit, are displayed throughout Biltmore House and the surrounding gardens – providing a perfect complement to Biltmore’s Winter Garden, Italian Garden and Walled Garden. “The display has been in the planning stage for more than a year,” said Travis Tatham, director of entertainment and event programming at Biltmore. Each large scale structure is composed of numerous pieces and each required a base and power access. Lighting the delicate displays proved quite a challenge, according to Parker Andes, Director of Horticulture at Biltmore, who added that Biltmore’s landscaping team collaborated with the Chihuly team to arrange intricate designs, to complement each piece. The massive creations are spectacular by day but on Thursday through Sunday evenings, the amazing sculptures are carefully lit to provide a dazzling dimension to this fabulous exhibit dubbed, Chihuly Nights at Biltmore, and marks the first time Biltmore is hosting evening hours for an outdoor exhibit. On those nights, attendees can also enjoy a wine bar and live music in the gardens.
Daytime viewing of the exhibit is included in general admission to Biltmore Estate while nighttime viewing requires a separate ticket which ranges in price from $57-$65. For more information call 800-411-3812 or go to Biltmore.

Asheville’s North Carolina Glass artisans celebrate the Chihuly exhibit with Summer of Glass. Asheville’s North Carolina Glass Center

Biltmore Estate Chihuly Exhibit

Tour these magical gardens day or night for the visual experience of a lifetime! Photo credit – Biltmore Estate.

announces a six-month celebration of Western North Carolina’s glass artisans during the Summer of Glass. In conjunction with Chihuly at Biltmore, regional glass artists are offering several major events and exhibits. “The celebration kicked off with the Downtown Asheville Arts District First Friday gallery stroll and continues with four VIP weekends throughout the summer that include studio tours, hands-on opportunities, tickets to Chihuly at Biltmore, and a few collector home visits,” said Sherry Masters, owner of Art Connections tours.

For more information about Summer of Glass, visit GLASS.

Back Porch Old Time Music Jam

Boogertown Gap

Local artists Boogertown Gap will tell y’all these mountains can inspire anyone to make music!

Back Porch Old Time Music Jam at the Oconaluftee Visitor Center Saturdays at 1:00 p.m. June 16th; July 7th and 21st; August 4th and 18th; and September 1st and 15th, 2018.

Musicians of every skill level are encouraged to string up their favorite acoustic instrument and join the fun. This is your chance to pick with world class music lovers in the beautiful Oconaluftee valley. The raised roof porch is the perfect venue for some old time mountain music that is quintessential to the Smoky Mountains!

Pickers and their families come from far and wide to scrub a rug in Oconaluftee. Music ranges from traditional Scotch-Irish tunes to more contemporary fare including bands such as the Dillards, Old Crow Medicine Show, Flatt & Scruggs and more. Of course they will be pickin’ both kinds of music, Country and Bluegrass!

One of the great things about this event is the entire family can enjoy the music in the cool shade of the porch. Another option is to let the tunes waft down to you on a summers breeze while touring the historic Mountain Farm Museum. They say music hath charm and has been known to soothe the savage beast so don’t be surprised to see an elk or two toe tapping along with the tunes. Speaking of toes, dipping yours in the cool waters of the scenic Oconaluftee river is a sure cure for a hot summer day!

Join us at the Oconaluftee Back Porch for some music and fun. You just might learn something before it is done!

National Park Hosts Appalachian Women’s Work Event

Join the fun at Oconaluftee Visitors Center and help us honor the hard work and sacrifices of the women of Appalachia!

National Park Hosts Appalachian Women’s Work Event. Great Smoky Mountains National Park will host the annual Women’s Work Event at the Mountain Farm Museum on Saturday, June 16, 2018 from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m at the Mountain Farm Museum next to the Oconaluftee Visitor Center. The visitors center is located two miles north of Cherokee, North Carolina on highway 441. The event honors the service and sacrifice made by the women of Appalachia.

Park staff and volunteers will showcase the toils of mountain life and the customs practiced by women and their families in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century.

Demonstrations among the historic buildings include hearth cooking, soap making, cornshuck crafts, and using plants for home remedies. Artifacts and historic photographs will be exhibited providing a glimpse into the varied roles of mountain women. The Davis-Queen house will be open for visitors to tour and will feature an audio exhibit of the last child born in the house. The event gives families a

Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Oconaluftee Visitors Center is always a great place to discover secrets of the Smokies!

chance to see into the past  and also participate in hands-on activities of traditional southern Appalachia.

Visitors will also be treated to an old timey music jam  on the porch of the Oconaluftee Visitor Center. Porch jam sessions are held every first and third Saturday of the month from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. All activities are free to the public. For additional information call the visitor center at 828-497-1904 or visit