The splendor of autumn in the High Country is in full swing this week, and we hope you’ll find time to take part in a couple of its favorite harvest season traditions this weekend! Here’s everything you need to know about having fun at this year’s Woolly Worm Festival in Banner Elk and at the annual Valle Country Fair in Valle Crucis. Spend the day at one or split your time between the two — either way, you’ll be glad you got out to enjoy this cool, comfortable time of year in the mountains.
If you’re racing a woolly worm in Banner Elk this weekend, read below the festival details to find out how to care for your worm, watch him grow into a Tiger Moth and then release him!
VALLE COUNTRY FAIR
What? This annual harvest festival brings in tens of thousands in funds every year to support local charities. Enjoy live music, clogging and entertainment, face painting, pumpkin carving, arts and crafts, old-fashioned carnival games, great food at the concession stands, high-quality handmade craft exhibitors and more. And remember, it’s all for a good cause!
This year’s event supports grant funding for Children’s Council, the Community Care Clinic, High Country Care Givers, High Country Community Health, Hospitality House, the Hunger and Health Coalition, Parent to Parent Family Network, Reaching Avery Ministry, Volunteer Avery County and the Western Youth Network. The outreach committee at Holy Cross Church distributes all remaining proceeds to individuals and families in crisis.
When? The fun starts at 8 a.m. on Saturday and lasts through 4 p.m. that afternoon.
Where? The fair is held on the grounds of the Valle Crucis Conference Center in a huge meadow at the intersection of N.C. Highway 194 and Dutch Creek Road.
Cost? Admission is free and ample parking is available in the adjoining field for $10 per car. Bring cash to spend on local vendors and concessions. ATMs will be on site in two locations.
You Ought to Know: Pets are not allowed.
For More information: Call Holy Cross Church at 828-963-4609 or visit the Fair on the Web at www.vallecountryfair.org
THE WOOLLY WORM FESTIVAL
What? Winter is coming! Celebrate the changing seasons in true High Country style and find out from the woolly worms what to expect when cold weather hits these mountains. Enjoy crafts, food, live entertainment and the highlight of this annual event — the popular woolly worm races! Watch the races from the sidelines or enter a fuzzy little guy of your own to get it on the fun and a chance to win a cash prize.
When? The festivities begin when gates open at 9 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday, which races taking off shortly thereafter. Each day concludes with a championship race at 4 p.m.
Where? This annual celebration draws thousands of folks from across the country to the charming mountain community of downtown Banner Elk.
Cost? Join the fun for just $5 per person. Kids ages 6-12 are admitted for just $3 and those 2 and under get in for free.
You Ought to Know: Want to stay for the whole weekend? Lodging options are available at BannerElk.com.
For More Information: Visit www.WoollyWorm.com or call 800-972-2183.
Do you want to see your woolly worm emerge into a Tiger Moth? Follow these care instructions.
Remember, releasing the woolly worm after a day or two of enjoying its company is the option the woolly worm prefers.