TRAVEL GUIDE TO BRYSON CITY AND THE GREAT SMOKY MOUNTAINS

THINGS TO DO IN THE SMOKIES

Highlights of the
Bryson City and Great
Smokies Events Calendar

February
Be My Valentine Charlie Brown Train
Nantahala River Glacier Breaker

March
Bank of America US Whitewater Open

April
Green Thumb Day
Knobscorcher Bike Race
Easter Beagle Train

May
West Swain VFD Bass Tournament
Strawberry Jam
Twelve Hours of Tsali

   BBQ & Brew Trains (May-August)
Heritage Festival

June
Music in the Mountains Series

   Fontana Classic Bass Tournament
Cherokee Voices Festival
Women's Work Festival (GSMNP)

July
Music in the Mountains Series
Freedom Fest
Festival of Native Peoples
Folkmoot
Dinosaur Train

August
Music in the Mountains Series

   Dinosaur Train
Childrens Fishing Derby

September
Music in the Mountains Series
Horace Kephart Days
Railfest & Mountain Craft Fair
Mountain Life Festival (GSMNP)
Mountain Heritage Day (WCU)

October
Music in the Mountains Series

   Great Pumpkin Patch Express
Cherokee Indian Fair
Stecoah Harvest Festival
Maple Leaf Festival
Bryson City Chili Cookoff
Downtown Trick or Treat

November
The Polar Express
WNC Pottery Festival
Mountain Shapes & Colors
Stecoah Artisans Studio Tour

December
The Polar Express
Christmas Parade

Monthly Calendar of Events in Bryson City and the
Great Smoky Mountains of North Carolina

Use the mini calendar on the right to bring up the events on an upcoming month or specific date.

2015: Jan | Feb | Mar | Apr | May | Jun | Jul | Aug | Sep | Oct | Nov | Dec

Oconaluftee Indian Village
Date(s): May 01, 2015 - Oct 17, 2015
When: Mon-Sat, 10 am - 5 pm. Closed Sundays.
Where: Oconaluftee Indian Village

Mon-Sat; closed Sundays. As you step into the Oconaluftee Indian Village, you’re transported back to witness the challenges of Cherokee life at a time of rapid cultural change. Tour guides help you explore the historic events and figures of the 1760's. Visitors can interact with villagers as they  participate in their daily activities. The Village also hosts live reenactments, interactive demonstrations, and Hands-On Cherokee Pottery for Kids classes. More info

Free Concert Featuring Boogertown Gap
Date(s): Oct 03, 2015
When: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Free Concert Featuring Boogertown Gap

Boogertown Gap is Ruth Barber and Keith Watson, a wife/husband duo and sometimes band. They specialize in the music that was played and sung by early pioneers and settlers of the Great Smoky Mountains and vicinity. Enjoy old Celtic ballads, fiddle tunes, American compositions, Negro spirituals, and those ever-present, unknown traditional tunes! More info

The Music in the Mountains free concert series is held every Saturday evening, June 6 -  October 31 in Bryson City. Full Schedule.

Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express
Date(s): Oct 03, 2015 - Oct 04, 2015
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Friday Departures, 3:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday departures, 12 pm & 3:30 pm.

On board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, guests will hear a narration of Schulz’s “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” as the train travels to the Pumpkin Patch. Upon arrival, passengers will be greeted and have a photo opportunity with Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. Activities to enjoy at The Great Pumpkin Patch will include: campfire marshmallows, a coloring station, temporary tattoos, trick or treating, bouncy house, hayrides and live musical entertainment. And kids, don’t forget to wear your Halloween costumes!  Each child will also select their own pumpkin from The Great Pumpkin Patch to take home. Call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

Folk School Fall Festival
Date(s): Oct 03, 2015 - Oct 04, 2015
When: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm daily
Where: John C. Campbell Folk School, Brasstown

Celebrate the rich heritage of the Appalachians at our 42nd Fall Festival, featuring over 200 craftspeople, continuous live music and dance, craft demonstrations, food, and much more. Please note that pets are not allowed within the festival. More info

Travis Tritt in Concert
Date(s): Oct 03, 2015
When: 7:30 pm
Where: Smoky Mountain Center for the Performing Arts, Franklin
Travis Tritt in Concert

Tritt began his career incorporating lifelong influences in Southern Rock, blues and gospel into his country. His 9 albums and scores of hit singles led to more than 25 million in career album sales, 2 Grammys, and 3 CMA Awards. More info

Back Porch Old Time Music Jam
Date(s): Oct 03, 2015
When: 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Where: Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Cherokee

First and Third Saturdays, all year. Bring an acoustic instrument and join in on this old-time jam. Or just sit back and enjoy the sights and sounds as others play traditional Appalachian Music. On the covered porch at the visitor center. More info

Cherokee Indian Fair
Date(s): Oct 06, 2015 - Oct 10, 2015
When: Times vary
Where: Cherokee Indian Fairgrounds

Like the typical county fair, Cherokee invites a top-of-the-line carnival to provide amusements all week for the young and old alike. From games to high-tech rides, the carnival is always a welcome feature at the Fair. Community arts and crafts exhibits, Miss Cherokee contest. Nationally known entertainers. More info

Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express
Date(s): Oct 09, 2015 - Oct 11, 2015
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Friday Departures, 3:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday departures, 12 pm & 3:30 pm.

On board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, guests will hear a narration of Schulz’s “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” as the train travels to the Pumpkin Patch.

Upon arrival, passengers will be greeted and have a photo opportunity with Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. Activities to enjoy at The Great Pumpkin Patch will include: campfire marshmallows, a coloring station, temporary tattoos, trick or treating, bouncy house, hayrides and live musical entertainment. And kids, don’t forget to wear your Halloween costumes!  Each child will also select their own pumpkin from The Great Pumpkin Patch to take home. Call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

Maple Leaf Fall Festival
Date(s): Oct 10, 2015
When: 10:00 am - 4:00 pm
Where: Downtown Whittier

Hosted by the Whittier Community Club and Whittier Information & Historical Center, this event features area artists and crafters, holiday exhibits, flea market, food, and live local entertainment. For more information, call Gloria Nolan 828-497-2393. US Hwy 74, Exit 72/Whittier.

Free Concert Featuring Donna Hughes
Date(s): Oct 10, 2015
When: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Free Concert Featuring Donna Hughes

As a singer-songwriter and with a bluegrass band Donna has performed at major concert and festival events including: BB Kings in NY, Merlfest, the PBS "Song of the Mountains," Bluebird Cafe and The Station Inn in Nashville and many more popular venues. More info

The Music in the Mountains free concert series is held every Saturday evening, June 6 -  October 31 in Bryson City. Full Schedule.

Fall Hike Week at Fontana Village
Date(s): Oct 11, 2015 - Oct 15, 2015
Where: Fontana Village Resort, Fontana Dam

Includes guided hikes, evening lectures and programs and more in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park as well as many other scheduled events. Contact our Outdoors Program for more information by calling 828-498-2122 or click here.

Harvest Festival
Date(s): Oct 16, 2015 - Oct 18, 2015
Where: Stecoah Valley Center

Every October this three-day event begins with a Friday evening campfire and storytelling.

Saturday begins with a 5K race and a one mile fun run. The Festival gets underway at 11am with crafts, country fair, weaving and knitting demonstrations, quilt exhibit, antique tractors, corn grinder, music and dance, food and much more. There's always a 7:30 pm Saturday evening concert in the auditorium featuring a bluegrass headliner. The festival concludes on Sunday with a free gospel singing beginning at 2:30 pm. More info

Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express
Date(s): Oct 16, 2015 - Oct 18, 2015
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Friday Departures, 3:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday departures, 12 pm & 3:30 pm.

On board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, guests will hear a narration of Schulz’s “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” as the train travels to the Pumpkin Patch.

Upon arrival, passengers will be greeted and have a photo opportunity with Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. Activities to enjoy at The Great Pumpkin Patch will include: campfire marshmallows, a coloring station, temporary tattoos, trick or treating, bouncy house, hayrides and live musical entertainment. And kids, don’t forget to wear your Halloween costumes!  Each child will also select their own pumpkin from The Great Pumpkin Patch to take home. Call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

Free Concert Featuring The Josh Fields Band
Date(s): Oct 17, 2015
When: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Free Concert Featuring The Josh Fields Band

The Josh Fields Band blends Southern Rock, classic and contemporary Country and bluegrass leanings to make a sound all their own.  With tight three part harmonies and authentic live shows, they pride themselves on being one of a kind.  Be sure to check out Tobacco Road, their debut album. More info

The Music in the Mountains free concert series is held every Saturday evening, June 6 -  October 31 in Bryson City. Full Schedule.

Back Porch Old Time Music Jam
Date(s): Oct 17, 2015
When: 1:00 - 3:00 pm
Where: Oconaluftee Visitor Center, Cherokee

First and Third Saturdays, all year. Bring an acoustic instrument and join in on this old-time jam. Or just sit back and enjoy the sights and sounds as others play traditional Appalachian Music. On the covered porch at the visitor center. More info

25th Annual Chili Cook Off
Date(s): Oct 17, 2015
When: 11:00 am - 3:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Looking for a way to "heat" up your Bryson City getaway? Then make your plans now to attend the annual Bryson City Chamber of Commerce Chili Cook Off, now in its 25th year and a favorite of both locals and visitors. Sample chilis ranging from mild to wild and in red, white, and vegetarian recipes. Enjoy a festival atmosphere with decorated booths, live music, handcrafted arts and yummy homemade desserts. Finally, don't forget to cast your vote for the coveted People's Choice Award given at the end of the day. Bring your appetite and see you there! Call 800-867-9246 for more information.

Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express
Date(s): Oct 23, 2015 - Oct 25, 2015
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Friday Departures, 3:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday departures, 12 pm & 3:30 pm.

On board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, guests will hear a narration of Schulz’s “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” as the train travels to the Pumpkin Patch.

Upon arrival, passengers will be greeted and have a photo opportunity with Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. Activities to enjoy at The Great Pumpkin Patch will include: campfire marshmallows, a coloring station, temporary tattoos, trick or treating, bouncy house, hayrides and live musical entertainment. And kids, don’t forget to wear your Halloween costumes!  Each child will also select their own pumpkin from The Great Pumpkin Patch to take home. Call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

Free Concert Featuring Blue Eyed Girl
Date(s): Oct 24, 2015
When: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Free Concert Featuring Blue Eyed Girl

Blue Eyed Girl of Asheville, NC is the exciting coalescence of three young women whose roots sink deep into traditional music and dance.  Their sweet Appalachian harmonies, old-time rhythmic flair, and high-energy dance numbers draw from the music passed down to them from their families. The music is in their blood and the songs come straight from their hearts. More info

The Music in the Mountains free concert series is held every Saturday evening, June 6 -  October 31 in Bryson City. Full Schedule.

NOCtoberfest
Date(s): Oct 24, 2015
When: 12:00 - 5:00 pm
Where: Nantahala Outdoor Center, Bryson City
NOCtoberfest

Celebrate leaf season in the Smoky Mountains at this free event, a family-favorite in the Nantahala Gorge. With activities and prizes for all ages, your friends and family are sure to have a great day on or off the water.  Pumpkin Decorating - every child wins a prize. Great Pumpkin Pursuit - free-for-all dash through Nantahala Falls in rafts; try to pick up as many pumpkins as you can! Costume contests for kids and couples. Live music at Big Wesser BBQ; bonfire with s'mores included. More info

Downtown Trick or Treat
Date(s): Oct 29, 2015
When: 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Where: Downtown Bryson City

Enjoy a fun, safe and small town trick or treating experience this Halloween! With the streets closed, the kids are out in full force to fill their bags with candy from the costumed downtown merchants. And don't forget the costume contest open to all ages with the winner in each class receiving a gift certificate to Soda Pops (the local ice cream shop).

For more information please contact the Swain County Chamber of Commerce, 800-867-9246.

Hauntober Weekend & Haunted Trail
Date(s): Oct 30, 2015 - Oct 31, 2015
Where: Fontana Village Resort, Fontana Dam

Events and activities for kids of all ages including face painting, pumpkin carving, ghost tours and hayrides. And for the more stout of heart, try the The Haunted Halloween Trail for a truly frightful experience! For more information call the Outdoors Program at 828-498-2122 or click here.

Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express
Date(s): Oct 30, 2015 - Oct 31, 2015
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Peanuts Pumpkin Patch Express

Friday Departures, 3:30 pm, Saturday and Sunday departures, 12 pm & 3:30 pm.

On board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad, guests will hear a narration of Schulz’s “It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown” as the train travels to the Pumpkin Patch.

Upon arrival, passengers will be greeted and have a photo opportunity with Charlie Brown, Lucy, and Snoopy. Activities to enjoy at The Great Pumpkin Patch will include: campfire marshmallows, a coloring station, temporary tattoos, trick or treating, bouncy house, hayrides and live musical entertainment. And kids, don’t forget to wear your Halloween costumes!  Each child will also select their own pumpkin from The Great Pumpkin Patch to take home. Call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

Rumble in the Rhododendron Fly Fishing Tournament
Date(s): Oct 30, 2015 - Nov 01, 2015
Where: Cherokee Indian Reservation

A two-person team fly-fishing competition held on the 2.2 miles of trophy, catch-and-release waters in Cherokee. $10,000 in prizes divided among top teams. $225 team entry fee includes lunch and dinner. More info

Are you and your best fly-fishing buddy ready to rumble with the top anglers around? Then get your $225 entry fee together for this two-person team competition held exclusively in the catch-and-release section known simply as Raven Fork, here in Cherokee, NC. This tournament offers a guaranteed payout totaling $10,000 for the top teams. Your entry fee also includes lunch and dinner. - See more at: http://visitcherokeenc.com/events/detail/rumble-in-the-rhododendron/#sthash.EccGpz9R.dpuf
Are you and your best fly-fishing buddy ready to rumble with the top anglers around? Then get your $225 entry fee together for this two-person team competition held exclusively in the catch-and-release section known simply as Raven Fork, here in Cherokee, NC. This tournament offers a guaranteed payout totaling $10,000 for the top teams. Your entry fee also includes lunch and dinner. - See more at: http://visitcherokeenc.com/events/detail/rumble-in-the-rhododendron/#sthash.EccGpz9R.dpuf
Masquerade Dinner Train
Date(s): Oct 31, 2015
When: 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot

Celebrate the evening in style on board the Great Smoky Mountains Railroad! Dress in your Halloween costume and enjoy live music, cash bar, and dinner for a truly unique experience. For reservations call 800-872-4681 or visit the website.

 

Free Concert Featuring Chris Monteith as Elvis
Date(s): Oct 31, 2015
When: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Where: Bryson City Train Depot
Free Concert Featuring Chris Monteith as Elvis

If you are an Elvis fan you will find no one who will look or sound more like the King himself than Chris Monteith. Although Monteith bears an uncanny resemblance to the young Elvis, he goes for the King's fashion flair of the 1970's and keeps an ample supply of scarves for tossing into the audience or wrapping around the napes of fans seeking a souvenir.

 

Events Calendar
Click on a month or an underlined date to view scheduled events
 

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Bryson City - Swain County
Chamber of Commerce

210 Main Street
P.O. Box 509
Bryson City, NC 28713

Email

Karen Proctor Wilmot
Executive Director

800-867-9246 toll-free
828-488-3681 local
828-488-6858 fax