The Music of the Mountains celebration will take place this weekend, April 20 - 22 at three venues in the Smokies. The festival will share the regions rich musical traditions of the era before modern bluegrass and country music. The event will feature performances of traditional music in neighboring communities including an entire day of free music at the Sugarlands Visitor center on Saturday, April 21.
The three day event begins with a concert of Celtic music by the Good Thymes Ceilidh Bandon at 7 pm Friday at the Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center in Townsend. General admission is $5. The on Saturday Music in the Mountains will host free performances at the Sugarlands Visitor Center including the Lost Mill String Band at 10 am, Brien Fain at 11 am, Boogertown Gap Band at noon, Tony Thomas at 1 pm, the ETSU Old Time Band from 2 - 4 pm and the Mountain Strings at 4 pm. Then Sunday afternoon there will be a program at the Smoky Mountain Visitor Center in Cosby where traditional Appalachian religious music will be showcased. General Admission is $4.
This Saturday, December 17, The Great Smoky Mountains National Park will host a Holiday Homecoming at the new Oconaluftee Visitor Center. There will be plenty of activities to participate in from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Come for a couple of hours or come stay all day!
Park staff and volunteers will provide hands-on demonstrations of traditional crafts from 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. Children and adults will have the opportunity to make a corn shuck doll, buzz button, and cinnamon ornaments to take home, or if they wish, to hang on the visitor center tree. Then from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m. there will be an acoustic old time jam session focused on holiday music. “Musical expression was and still is often a part of daily life in the southern mountains, and mountain music is strongly tied to the Smokies history and culture,” said Lynda Doucette, Supervisory Park Ranger, Oconaluftee Visitor Center. She continued, “We would like to invite musicians to play traditional Appalachian tunes such as gospel songs and traditional ballads as they were played on the porches in the old days.”
The visitor center will be decorated for the holiday season and will include an exhibit on Christmas in the mountains in the past. Hot cider and cookies will be served on the porch accompanied by a glowing fire.
This year’s PigeonForge.com Midnight 8K race was a huge success! It was the official state championship race for the 8K distance and we had around 450 participants in the race, which was only it’s second year. We’re now even more excited for next year’s race which will be August 4, 2012 and the race is officially the RRCA Southern Region 8K Championship. That means next year’s winners will be the Region Champs in their divisions and the Southern Region is quite large so that will be a very exciting accomplishment!
Next year the race will run a lot like this year. The Holiday Inn Hotel and Convention Center will be the race host and will be the headquarters for all staging and awards. They will also offer a discount to participants. The race will run the same course as previous years and planning is already underway. We hope to see you at next year’sPigeon Forge Midnight 8K!