Second Annual Appalachian Bear Fest

Appalachian Bear Fest

Second Annual Appalachian Bear Fest is scheduled for June 2, 2018 from 11 a.m. til 3 p.m. at the ABR Visitor and Education Center, 121 Painted Trillium Way in Townsend, TN. This family friendly event benefits the Appalachian Bear Rescue (ABR) in Townsend.

Many fun activities are planned for the event including live music performed by Pistol Creek Catch of the Day, wildlife exhibits, artists nook, kid’s play area and a petting zoo! Charles the pig will make a special appearance and representatives from the American Eagle Foundation will be on hand to share their knowledge of America’s national symbol, the bald eagle. Smoky mountain hiking icon, Mike Maples, will share his adventures roaming the hills we call Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Everyone is encouraged to bring a lawn chair, kick back and enjoy a lovely afternoon of fun and fellowship in foothills of the Smoky Mountains. Your participation will benefit the amazing and beautiful symbol of the Smokies, the black bear.

The idea for ABR began to percolate after a severe black bear food shortage in 1989 forced bears to forage in highly populated areas. Leaving the shelter of the mountains the bears had many unfortunate conflicts with humans which resulted in a large number of orphaned cubs. A concerned group of volunteers banded together with the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency and Great Smoky Mountains National Park obtaining a corporate charter in early 1991 to make a difference in the lives of orphaned bears.

Since it’s founding ABR has received bears from numerous

Appalachian Bear Rescue's Clementine Bear

Clementine Bear gains confidence at ABR.

national parks, states and the wild lands surrounding the Smokies. Orphaned bears lucky enough to make it to ABR receive a second chance at life in the wild. To date ABR has taken in 269 cubs and yearlings. Current residents include Clementine Bear and Viola Bear. Volunteers work diligently improving the facility to provide the best possible care for each bear needing a new lease on life.

Recent improvements include constructing two new Wild Enclosures and a Cub house for transitioning cubs from the nursery to the outdoor areas. Each Wild Enclosure can support up to ten cubs or yearlings. The oldest building on the property is known as the Red Roof Recovery Center and has recently been upgraded from storage space to a recovery center for injured cubs that are unable to climb.

ABR’s mission is to educate the public on living safely with bears and how to keep them wild. School programs and the Townsend Education Center are vital tools used in accomplishing this mission. ABR offers regular classes and a detailed schedule is available at ABR.org.

ABR is grateful to all of it’s generous supporters without whom this important work would not be possible. Be sure and join us June 2, 2018 and show your support for the Black Bear and ABR.

For more information on Black Bears in the HeySmokies region check out this short, informative video with retired Great Smoky Mountains National Park ranger Butch McDade.

More Hey Smokies Features:

Smoky Mountain Hiker Magazine
Smoky Mountain Hiker Magazine...
Smoky Mountain Hiker magazine is an exciting magazine for the whole family to enjoy.  There are so many aspects of Great Smoky Mountains to expl[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Bears
Smoky Mountain Bears...
Smoky Mountain Bears are the symbol of the Smokies and sighting one is always a special event! With the tourist season in full swing and a recor[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Fairy Rings
Smoky Mountain Fairy Rings...
Smoky Mountain Fairy Rings. Finding a Smoky Mountain fairy ring is always a special event! Last year was one of the wettest on record, more than[Read More >>]
Smokey Bear Turns 75
Smokey Bear Turns 75...
Smokey Bear Turns 75. This year marks Smokey’s 75th year that he has cautioned Americans about the dangers of wild fires. Smokey Bear’s iconic f[Read More >>]
Great Smoky Mountain Hot Air Balloon Festival
Great Smoky Mountain Hot Air Balloon Festival...
The Great Smoky Mountain Hot Air Balloon Festival will light up the Smokies on Saturday August 17, 2019. Beginning at 3 p.m. and culminating wit[Read More >>]
Jared Hard Smoky Mountain Music Tour
Jared Hard Smoky Mountain Music Tour...
Jared Hard Smoky Mountain Music Tour. Jared will be bringing his musical stylings to the HeySmokies region for several months in late [Read More >>]
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Porpoise Island
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Porpoise Island...
Remember When, Lost Smoky Mountain Attractions - Porpoise Island. Pigeon Forge, TN is widely known as a national vacation destination offering s[Read More >>]
Grainger County Tomato Festival
Grainger County Tomato Festival...
Grainger County Tomato Festival is scheduled for July 26th, 27th and 28th 2019. This delicious annual special event is fun for the entire family[Read More >>]
Free Smoky Mountain Ranger Events
Free Smoky Mountain Ranger Events...
Free Smoky Mountain Ranger Events occur each day all summer long. 2019 is the perfect year to enjoy some quality time with a ranger in Great Smo[Read More >>]
Cades Cove Loop Lope 2019
Cades Cove Loop Lope 2019...
Cades Cove Loop Lope is a Great Smoky Mountain Special Event! The Cades Cove Foot Race (AKA – the Cades Cove Loop Lope) hosted by Friends of the[Read More >>]
Ginseng Harvesting
Ginseng Harvesting...
Ginseng Harvesting. Ginseng; miracle plant? Fact or fiction? There are many uses for this fascinating native plant that grows wild and randomly [Read More >>]
No thumbnail available
Smoky Mountain Farmers Markets. Get Your Fresh On!...
Yum Yum! Photo credit: foodie.com Smoky Mountain Farmers Markets. Get Your Fresh On! Smoky Mountain Farmers Markets are open for business! [Read More >>]
Wheels Through Time Museum Showcases Rare Motorcycles
Wheels Through Time Museum Showcases Rare Motorcycles...
Wheels Through Time Museum Showcases Rare Motorcycles. Seventeen of the world’s rarest bikes will be on display for a limited time. Dale’s Wheel[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Pinball Museum's
Smoky Mountain Pinball Museum's...
  Smoky Mountain Pinball Museum's. Gatlinburg’s Pinball Museum offers a step back in time for gamers. The metallic sound of quarters dropp[Read More >>]
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Biltmore Gardens Railway...
Biltmore Gardens Railway is on display at Biltmore Estate from May 24, 2019 through September 29, 2019. For a limited time, in the Conservatory [Read More >>]
Rhododendron Festivals
Rhododendron Festivals...
Rhododendron Festivals at Roan Mountain and Grandfather Mountain herald the beginning of summer. Roan Mountain and Mother Nature team up to show[Read More >>]
Cades Cove Car Ban
Cades Cove Car Ban...
Cades Cove Car Ban began May 2019. Cades Cove Loop Road will be closed to motor vehicles from sunrise until 10:00 a.m. on both Wednesday and Sat[Read More >>]
Catawba Brewery White Zombie 5K
Catawba Brewery White Zombie 5K...
Catawba Brewery White Zombie 5K. Asheville’s Catawba Brewing Company sponsors White Zombie 5k. The first-ever White Zombie 5k on will be run Sat[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon
Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon...
Smoky Mountain Strawberry Moon will be viewable Monday, June 17, 2019. The name Strawberry Moon was universally used by the Algonquin native Ame[Read More >>]
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event...
Smoky Mountain Stargazing Event. Star gazing is always a Smoky Mountains special event. Great Smoky Mountains National Park is hosting a stargaz[Read More >>]