By Katelyn Jenkins
The Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce is proudly hosting its 30th Symphony by the Lake at Chetola Resort on Friday, July 28, 2017. This year will be different than years past, with more Celtic music incorporated into the program. The concert theme is Oh the Places You’ll Go!
“This year’s theme was inspired by Dr. Seuss, but I’m not going to reveal any secrets,” Allison West, Marketing & Public Relations Manager of Chetola Resort, said. “I will say that there are some highly creative tents using that theme.”
There will be a themed tent decorating contest with prizes for those who enjoy letting their creativity shine!Tents are set up and designed in cohesion with each year’s theme, which provides a creative and fun atmosphere for all in attendance.
“One of the most fun parts about the Symphony by the Lake is seeing all of the tents and how creative they are,” West said, “and how the guests are dressed up in conjunction with those tents.”
Having been what West referred to as the pinnacle event of the summer for the last thirty years, the Symphony by the Lake presents the High Country with an amazing opportunity in a social setting with incredible and inspiring music.
“This is a fantastic cultural experience for everyone! Often you will see kids come towards the front and dance in front of the opening band and the orchestra. We absolutely love that children are being exposed to this type of culture,” said Billie Rogers, Events Director of the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce.
Even thought the event has been going on for three decades, according to West, it has been a unique experience each and every single year.
“Because each year has a different them, the Blowing Rock Chamber does an excellent job of keeping it fresh and unique each year,” West said.
The gates open at 5:30 p.m. with the Todd Wright Quintet beginning at 5:45 p.m. to take you through a journey of “jazz land”. Featured guest musicians Emmet Cahill and Seamus Brett from Celtic Thunder, the world renowned Irish music group, will also be performing.
The Symphony of the Mountains Orchestra begins at 7:30 p.m. and is followed by a phenomenal fireworks show at 9:15 p.m.
Symphony of the Mountains is a fully-professional orchestra that originated in 1946 as the Kingsport Civic Symphony. The orchestra has grown from 27 members to over 65 extremely talented musicians from the Tennessee region as well as symphony orchestras in Asheville, Roanoke and beyond.
Today Symphony of the Mountains serves the entire Northeast Tennessee/Southwest Virginia region as well as the High Country in Blowing Rock, NC.
Cornelia Laemmli Orth is in her tenth season as conductor of the Symphony of the Mountains. She was born and raised in Switzerland and holds a variety of master’s degrees in piano, music education, choral and orchestral conducting. Orth has conducted a number of renowned orchestras and frequently appears as a guest conductor at Appalachian State University.
Chetola Resort will have an outdoor buffet with food provided by Timberlake’s Restaurant which is only $14 per person, and there will be a variety of delicious meals, snacks and beverages. You are also welcome to bring your own picnic to enjoy! Please, no tables, umbrellas, tents or decorations that may obstruct the view of the symphony. Along with this, it is emphasized that there are no pets allowed of any kind.
Patron tent rentals are available for reservation and begin at $900 for side sections with a Chamber member discount. Packages include a single 10×10 tent, table, table linens, 13 tickets (one for your caterer), 12 chairs and signage for your space. Double and Triple packages are available if you wish to reserve multiple tents.
Shuttle services will be provided starting at 5:30 p.m. from the American Legion Hall parking deck, BRAHM parking deck, the Food Lion parking lot and Tweetsie Railroad parking lot. They will also take you back to your parking spots after the show ends. Use of the shuttle is strongly suggested as parking is extremely limited.
The Symphony by the Lake is Chetola Resort’s largest event of the year and brings 4000-5000 guests to the area each year. Volunteers are greatly needed and will assist with ticketing, parking, merchandise and more. In exchange for volunteer services you will be able to enjoy a wonderful evening with the Symphony and be invited to the Volunteer Appreciation Dinner that is held in September.
“We have had amazing volunteers in the past and are always happy to take more! Currently there are about twenty spots available. There are four members of the Chamber, so we appreciate all of the help we can get,” said Billie Rogers.
Tickets are on sale now and going faster than they ever have in the past! They can be purchased for $40 in advance per adult/$50 at the gate and $15 for children 12 years of age and under. They can be purchased online here or at the Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce, Monday through Friday from 9-5.
Limited audiophile tickets are available for those wanting to opt out of the social atmosphere and just enjoy the symphony. Tickets for $95 include reserved seating and side tables, a charcuterie box, two beverage tickets and water. Parking can be added to this selection for just 10 more dollars.
“It’s always, always a good time,” West said. “We are looking forward to another huge, successful event this year.”
For more information regarding Symphony by the Lake visit www.symphonybythelake.com or call Blowing Rock Chamber of Commerce at 828-295-7851.