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35th Annual Woolly Worm Festival Happening This Weekend, Oct. 20-21, at Banner Elk Elementary School

Oct. 19, 2012. The summer season has passed and fall returns to the majestic mountains of Avery County, showcasing the changing scenery with the kaledesco of color that welcomes fall to the High Country.

High Country residents are invited to come enjoy the 35th annual Woolly Worm Festival taking place Saturday, Oct. 20 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, Oct. 21 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in downtown Banner Elk. This family festival captures good ol family fun with rides, food, craft vendors and wacing worms. Through the efforts of the North Carolina Division of Tourism, Film & Sports Development, Smarter Travel Online featured the Woolly Worm Festival in Banner Elk in its roundup of “10 Great Fall Festivals.”

Brock Bindleckner. Photo by by Austin King

The annual woolly worm festival invites you come play and make family memories. Saturday’s winning worm has the esteemed honor of predicting the high country winter and earns $1000 for beating out other worms in his or her heat. Come early and stay late, it is a day of fun and laughter.

Plan to shop, eat and have fun as there are 140 food and craft vendors, inflatables and trampoline rides, face painting and all-day entertainment from music to dance teams. You will probably meet Mr. Woolly Worm and can have your picture taken with Merryweather, the mascot, and  you will see woolly worms – lots and lots of fuzzy woolly worms.

Tickets can be purchased at the gate or now on line at www.woollyworm.com. Cost at the gate is $5 per general adult admission, kids 12 and under $3 and children 5 and under are free. Bring your woolly worm or buy one inside the gate from the PTO booth. There is a nomincal fee to enter your worm in the wace, but all proceeds are returned to the community to support children’s programs and to promote tourism and small business in Avery County.

Have more questions? Need information on lodging and this event? Contact the Avery County Chamber at 800-972-2183 or go online to www.averycounty.com or www.woollyworm.com