Monday, June 27, 2011

Georgia's Blue Ridge July Almanac

Blue Ridge Scenic Railway – Rail excursions at 11 a.m. daily from the Depot in downtown Blue Ridge; closed on Wednesday. Early evening trains on Saturdays as well. Call 877-413-8724 or book online at
Mercier Orchards - Fresh fruit in season, fabulous bakery and more. U-pick events and wagon rides, call for updated schedule. Mercier’s is open daily 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. @ 8660 Blue Ridge Drive, 706-632-3411.
The Art Center – Galleries on West Main, located in the Historic Fannin County Courthouse downtown Blue Ridge. Don’t miss the Community Quilt Exhibit ends July 9th. Open Tuesday thru Saturday,
The Swan Drive-In – 9 p.m. featuring first-run movies on weekends. $6.00 adults and $3.00 children.
Cash Only.

Thursday Evenings
Pickin’ in the Park – Bluegrass jam sessions on the Toccoa River in McCaysville Horseshoe Bend Park beginning at 6 p.m. Bring a picnic and some lawn chairs and enjoy the music.

Blue Ridge Farmer’s Market – Saturday mornings in front of The Art Center, downtown Blue Ridge.
Ghost Tours – Two-hour tours every Fri & Sat at 7 p.m. in Downtown Blue Ridge. Call 706-455-9866.

Friday, July 1
Firecracker Special Train Ride – Take the Blue Ridge Scenic Railroad to McCaysville to view the fireworks. Train leaves the depot at 7:30 p.m. For reservations, call; 706-632-8724.
McCaysville/Copperhill Fireworks – Independence Day Celebration in downtown McCaysville at 9:30 p.m. North end of Hwy 5, (10 minutes from Blue Ridge.)

Saturday, July 2
Miners Homecoming Pancake Breakfast and Parade – Ducktown, TN. Pancake breakfast is at the Hoist House at the Ducktown Basin Museum, from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.. Patriotic walking parade on Main Street at 10:15 a.m. For a full schedule of events; 423-496-5778 or .
Old Timey Fourth of July Parade and Roxie Watson Concert – Downtown Blue Ridge, parade begins at 10:00 a.m. The concert will be on Depot Street beside the Blue Ridge City Park, immediately following the parade.
Fireworks Celebration at Lake Blue Ridge – Lake Blue Ridge Marina, barbeque and live music beginning at 4 p.m. Fireworks are at dusk. For more information call; 706-632-2618.

July 8
Movies in the Park – Downtown Blue Ridge City Park, showing “Gnomeo and Juliet” rated G, movie shows at dusk.

July 8 – 31
Little Shop of Horrors – Blue Ridge Community Theater, weekends only. Call for tickets at 706-632-9223 or visit them online at .

July 9
Singing in the Mountains / Gospel Concert – Fannin County Performing Arts Center, 6 p.m. 706-632-3771.

July 16
Gallery Walk – Downtown Blue Ridge from 5 p.m. until 8 p.m. Galleries include Multitudes Glass Art Gallery, Turning Leaf Wood Art Gallery, High Country Art & Antique and Abreu Fine Art Gallery.

July 20 – 30
Georgia Mountain Fair – Hiawassee, Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds. Ten days of rides, exhibits and live entertainment. For schedule of events, visit or call 706-896-4191.

July 22
Classic Cars Cruise In – Dairy Queen Parking Lot. Come out for some ice cream and see the cars. 6 p.m. to dark.

July 24
Tri The Mountains Sprint Triathlon – Begins as a swim in the crystal clear waters of Lake Blue Ridge at 7 a.m., followed by a bike course, and ends as a run to the Downtown Blue Ridge City Park. For more information visit; .

July 29 – 30
Maxwell Taylor Back By Popular Demand – The Art Center in Downtown Blue Ridge. A different performance each night. 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tickets are $25.00. Call 706-632-5680 for additional information. .

For more details visit our website;

Visit Our Welcome Center!
Info about Shopping & Restaurants, Hiking & Outdoor Adventure
Free Info – Wi Fi & Postcards
152 Orvin Lance Drive– Or call 706-632-5680

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Top Ten Blue Ridge Summer Experiences

1. Downtown Blue Ridge - Stroll though town and visit all the great little shops and restaurants. Find historic old buildings like the Baugh House and Art Center, Take a ride on a scenic railway or just sit on one of the many benches and watch the world go by. City Park is a great place to take a picnic. Get free Self-Guided Tours & maps by clicking here: Restaurants in Blue Ridge, Blue Ridge History - Downtown Blue Ridge Historic Walking Tour

2. Scenic Driving Tour #1, Mountains & Countryside - A twisty turny drive through beautiful mountain and river scenery. From the tumbling Toccoa River along Aska Road to the authentic Appalachian farm community of Dial to the deep forests along Hwy. 60, this drive has it all. It can take 2-4 hours, depending upon how many stops you make and how well you can handle these challenging mountain roads. Free Self-Guided Tour & map click here: Scenic Driving Tour #1- Mountains & Countryside
3. Shopping Fun - Little main streets in Blue Ridge and McCaysville/Copperhill plus the little towns of Mineral Bluff and Morganton have loads of unique shopping. All around the area you can find special spots and artist studios for one-of-a-kind purchases. We have free Self-Guided Tours & maps to area shopping spots. Click here: Shopping - Handmade, Homemade & Homegrown and Shopping in Downtown Blue Ridge and Shopping in Downtown McCaysville.
4. Mercier Orchards - Blue Ridge on Highway 5 north just a mile and a half out of town. Southern Living Magazine’s favorite roadside apple market and more – best fried pies, home made ice cream and apple cider anywhere. U-Pick events are awesome family fun and a chance to go out in the orchards and pick your own fresh fruit. Expanded shopping holds all kinds of goods, from gourmet meats and specialties to birdhouses, to maps and books, to art, to all kinds of delectible take home foods. And fresh fruits galore. (706) 632-3411 or on the web at and follow them on Facebook at
5. Lake Blue Ridge, Morganton Point - The crystal clear aquamarine waters of Lake Blue Ridge make it one of Georgia's most picturesque mountain lakes. The 3,290-acre lake and surrounding area boast over 90 national forest campsites, several boat ramps, a full-service marina and public swimming and picnic areas. 80 percent of the shoreline on Lake Blue Ridge is in the Chattahoochee National Forest, managed by the USDA Forest Service. Morganton Point Campground, in Morganton, features a public swimming area, along with 43 campsites, picnic tables and pavilion and a boat ramp. Take U.S. 515 north from Blue Ridge for 4 miles to GA 60; turn right (southwest) and go 3 miles to Morganton. In Morganton, turn right on County Road 616 for 1 mile.

6. Appalachian Trail, Three Forks - A junction of the Appalachian Trail and Benton MacKaye Trail is here. To get to the trailheads Go 13.5 miles south on Aska Road to its end. Turn right onto Newport Road, go 4.5 miles to end. Turn left onto Doublehead Gap Road, cross a concrete bridge and come to a dirt gravel road. Continue on this road .3 miles to the intersection with dirt-gravel FS Road 58, intersecting sharply from the right. Turn right (continue east) into the forest and uphill 5.3 miles to Three Forks. Noontootla Creek is on the right as you ascend. The trail begins on the north side of the road (on the left) and starts as a gradual hike alongside Long Creek. There are three short ascents before reaching the blue blazed side trail to Long Creek Falls at 1.1 miles. Springer Mountain, the starting point of the Appalachian Trail on its 2,200 mile journey north to Maine is near by. You can start a 3.7 mile hike to Springer from Three Forks. Get good hiking advice, maps and gear at Blue Ridge Mountain Outfitters on Main Street. And you can download our free hiking Self-Guided Tours & map for local hiking access points click here: Outdoor Adventure - Area Hiking Trails Access Points
7. Toccoa River Fun - From fishing to hiking to tubing to kayaking, the Toccoa River offers plenty of outdoor fun as it winds through the entire area.You can download 2 free Self-Guided Tours & maps to all the different recreational opportunites along the Toccoa River by clicking here: Water Spots - The Toccoa River south and Lake Blue RIdge and Water Spots north - Lake Blue Ridge Dam to Ocoee River
8. Waterfalls, including Amicalola Falls - Located within Amicalola State Park, the falls drop 729 feet in seven cascades; Amicalola is said to be the highest waterfall east of the Mississippi. From Blue Ridge, take Hwy 515 south toward Ellijay. Turn left onto Hwy 52 East from Ellijay about 19 miles. Look for the left fork toward Amicalola Falls State Park. For a free Self-Guided Tour & map of all of our area waterfalls click here: Water Spots, Area Whitewater & Waterfalls
9. Summertime Rail Trips with Blue Ridge Scenic Railway - A 3.5 hour ride along the Toccoa River from Blue Ridge to McCaysville makes for great summer fun. Daily trips run during the summer and special excursions can be found on their web site. Also Raft & Rail adventures, twilight trips and more. 241 Depot Street, Blue Ridge, GA, 30513 (877) 413-8724; (706) 632-8724 or on the web at or follow them on Facebook at
10. Rafting, Hiking & Biking at the Ocoee Whitewater Center - From Blue Ridge take Hwy 5 north to McCaysville, turn left on Hwy 68 and follow signs to Hwy 64. through Ducktown, Tenn. Built for the 1996 Olympic Whitewater Slalom Races, the center includes the Olympic race course, native gardens, paved walkways, hiking and biking trails, pools of water for wading or feeding fish and more. It's a great place to take a picnic. To make rafting reservations from Ocoee River outfitters, see our web site at (423) 496-0100 or (877) 692-6050 or on the web at