Carolina in the Fall Music and Food Festival, the fourth annual celebration of music, food and mountain tradition, takes place September 21-22, in historic downtown Wilkesboro. Over 100 musicians, chefs, vintners and craft beer brewers from the region will gather on Main Street to entertain audiences with the best of their craft.
Music begins at noon on Friday and 11 a.m. on Saturday and continues until 10:30 p.m. both nights. Festival gates open an hour before the music begins. Carolina in the Fall, recipient of the 2017 IBMA Momentum Event of the Year Award, offers five stages of entertainment: Carolina Stage, Foothills Stage, Hall of Fame Stage, Great State Stage, and, new for this year, The 1915 Stage. Live music on the porch of the Blue Ridge Artisan Center at The 1915 begins at 1 p.m. each day.
“Everyone is welcome to come enjoy the street festival portion of Carolina in the Fall. Those who wish to enter the music venues may purchase a wristband to hear world-class performers from near and far. The entertainment is phenomenal,” said Dale Isom, festival organizer. “For some music lovers, ‘the bigger, the better’ holds true; others prefer intimate, single-stage festivals. Carolina in the Fall is perfect for everyone! It offers a mix of Americana, bluegrass and folk music; exciting activities and competitions; inimitable shop vendors; slightly-out-of-the-ordinary cuisine to the most beloved and anticipated festival dishes; and a festival ambiance that enhances lifelong memories for all.”
Wilkes County’s The Kruger Brothers serve as festival hosts. They will be joined by other renowned bands that salute the rich musical history of Wilkes, including The Steel Wheels, Jim Lauderdale, The Secret Sisters, Front Country, Humming House, The Roosevelts, Snyder Family Band, The Trailblazers, Wayne Henderson, Presley Barker and many others. The complete lineup and stage schedules are available at www.carolinainthefall.org.
Each evening during the festival, VIP ticketholders can attend the Carolina Jam at the Wilkesboro Holiday Inn Express’ Yadkin Valley Event Center. The Carolina Jam, hosted by the Kruger Brothers, features artists from the day’s lineup. These unforgettable jam sessions provide once-in-a-lifetime collaborations between the artists.
Carolina in the Fall engages audiences with tastes from the region – tastes in music, food and beverages, heritage crafts, the best of entertainment, including food, heritage crafts, dance, shopping, children’s activities and more.
Food and Beverages
Festival guests can enjoy sweet and savory dishes as food trucks from across the state bring their best recipes to feed the masses and compete in the Carolina in the Fall Food Truck Championship. Competing trucks are selected based on their unique menus to ensure variety. Competing for the 2018 title are Amalfi’s on Wheels, Bleu Barn Bistro, Chop Shop BBQ, Kerala Curry Express, PorterHouse Burger Truck, Wingz on Wheelz and Wolf Down Eastern Fusion Tacos.
Non-competing food trucks include Carolina Shaved Ice and Super Snack Shop, offering funnel cakes, fresh squeezed and frozen lemonade, and other frozen desserts on a stick. And, the Watering Hole will offer free, filtered water for all ticket holders.
Guests with a grown-up thirst can enjoy tastings in the Beer Garden, featuring the area’s finest vintners and craft brewers, including Angry Troll Brewing, Booneshine Brewing Company and Raffaldini Wine.
Activities for All Ages
- Chad Lovette Memorial 5k and 10k Trail Run and 5k Walk – Cub Creek Park, 200 S. Bridge Street, Saturday, check-in 7 a.m. and event begins promptly at 8 a.m.
- Yoga on the Square – Heritage Square, Saturday, 9 a.m. Bring a yoga mat.
- Splash Pad on Heritage Square for kids of all ages – Features 29 jets and colorful lighting. Don’t forget a towel and a change of clothes.
- North Carolina Banjo Championship, sponsored by Deering Banjos – Hall of Fame Stage, Saturday, 8:30 a.m.
- Bobby Martin Young Songwriter Competition – Great State Stage, Saturday, 8:30 a.m.
- Picking Place, hosted by the Wilkes Acoustic Folk Society – Pickin’ Tent located on Main Street in front of Wilkes Heritage Museum, 12 noon-5 p.m. each day. Bring an instruments and join the jam.
- Corn Hole Tournament – front lawn of Wilkes Heritage Museum, Saturday, 3 p.m.
- Contra/Barn Dance and Lessons with Bob & Roberta Kogut – Great State Stage, Friday, 3-4:45 p.m.
- Contra/Barn Dance and Lessons with Bob & Roberta Kogut – Great State Stage, Saturday, 4-4:45 p.m.
Points of Interest
While visiting Historic Wilkesboro for the festival, guests can visit the newly renovated Wilkes Heritage Museum, which houses the Blue Ridge Music Hall of Fame, and Blue Ridge Artisan Center, located in The 1915. The 1915 is on the National Registry of Historic Places and is a masterpiece of federal-style architecture. Owners of the building, Dale and Michelle Isom, recently completed restoring the original beauty of this masterpiece of federal-style architecture.
Shopping and Heritage Crafts
Vendors from across the region will offer alluring and distinctive merchandise. These include the Carolina in the Fall merchandise booth, Prucha Banjos, Deering Banjos and Cook’s Sporting Goods. Heritage craftspeople and artisans will demonstrate their talents and sell handmade items. Lyle Wheeler will demonstrate woodworking and blacksmithing. He will also have handmade rocking chairs and local honey for sale. Handcrafted jewelry and specialty items by Calnek Woodworks, Karen Keyes Pottery & Photography, Classic Country, Designs by Sharon, Deb Goodman and A Purpose Again will be available. Jams, jelly, salsa and blueberry smoothies by Green Mesa Farms. In addition, Carolina in the Fall will feature great snacks and beverages provided by Talia Espresso, Anchor Coffee and Kettle Bear Kettle Corn.
Local accommodations consist of campgrounds and area hotels. The Town of Wilkesboro is opening the Sewerfest Campground for the festival. For more information or to reserve a campsite, email [email protected] or visit www.carolinainthefall.org.
Tickets for Carolina in the Fall Music & Food Festival 2018 are on sale now and may be purchased at www.carolinainthefall.org, by calling 336-990-0747, at the festival office located at 1305 South Collegiate Drive in Wilkesboro, or at the festival gate. The two-day VIP ticket includes a reserved seat at the Carolina Stage and a two-night pass to the Carolina Jam. Children ages 12 and under are admitted for free with a paying adult.
Advance Prices, 08/14-09/20:
1-day general admission – $35
2-day general admission – $65
2-day VIP/reserved seat – $140
Gate Prices, 09/21-09/22:
1-day general admission – $40
2-day general admission – $75
2-day VIP/reserved seat – $150
2018 Lineup and Schedule
- The Kruger Brothers – Friday, Saturday
- The Steel Wheels – Friday
- Jim Lauderdale – Friday
- The Secret Sisters – Saturday
- Front Country – Saturday
- Humming House – Saturday
- The Roosevelts – Friday
- The Contenders – Saturday
- Fireside Collective – Friday
- Snyder Family Band – Saturday
- Arcadian Wild – Friday, Saturday
- Roanoke – Friday, Saturday
- Jay Nash – Friday
- Salt & Light Bluegrass Band – Friday
- The Trailblazers – Friday
- Wayne Henderson – Saturday
- T. Michael Coleman – Friday
- Presley Barker – Friday, Saturday
- Hank, Pattie & The Current – Friday
- Nikki Talley – Friday
- The Paper Crowns – Saturday
- Back Porch Bluegrass Band – Friday
- David Russell & Friends – Friday, Saturday
- Shay Martin Lovette – Friday, Saturday
- Uncle Joe & the Shady Rest – Saturday
- Alex Key & The Locksmiths – Friday
- The Carolina PineCones – Saturday
- Will Easter – Saturday
- Cane Mill Road – Saturday
- Madison Elmore with Luke Morris – Friday
- Wyld Fern – Friday
- Rocky Point Band – Saturday
- Ben Barker – Saturday
- Foothill Cloggers – Saturday
- Bob and Roberta Kogut – Friday, Saturday
Carolina in the Fall Music and Food Festival is presented through the partnership of Heart of Folk, LLC, the Kruger Brothers and the Town of Wilkesboro. To purchase tickets, see the complete lineup of performances, or get more information about the festival, its activities and competitions, vendors and sponsors, visitwww.carolinainthefall.org or call 336-990-0747.
On Social Media
Facebook: @CarolinaInTheFall Twitter: @CITFFestival Instagram: @CarolinaintheFall Hashtags: #CITF