If you think there is nothing to do in the Highlands area, think again. Besides Mother Nature's playground there is fine shopping as well as many cultural events and various art galleries to stroll through.
For local music, dining, or dancing, you will find Highlanders
- at the Ugly Dog,
- the Hummingbird Lounge in Old Edwards, or
- the Oak Street Cafe.
- Dancing at the Bascom "Barn Dances" held the last Sat. of January, February, and March
- The new town square on Main Street will have local entertainment several nights a week during the season. Stop by after shopping to listen and share a glass of wine. It's new location is to the left of Kilwins Ice Cream Shop.
The Highlands/Cashiers Plateau is alive with activity.! Every season is to be enjoyed. From January to December the mountain is alive. Come be a part of it.
January....what a Barn Dance? Do they still do those? Yes, the Bascom is at it again...The last Saturday night of January, February, and March you will find everyone has their dancing shoes on. The Nantahala Hiking Club is meeting to help get those New Year's Resolutions to come to fruition. Hikes for all skills and all location. Skiing or tubing on the mountain... Book clubs and card clubs are in full swing.
Chocolate lovers...comes to Cashiers for the annual chocolate cookoff. Cooking schools, weekends at Old Edward's Spa, and the annual Outhouse Race at Sapphire keeps the creativity moving.
Theater begins at the Martin Lipscomb Performing Arts Center. Chefs are preparing for the annual chili cookoff. The Madi Gras Party, the King of the Mountain Chef's Challenge
Spring "New Beginnings for the Mountain"
Spring ushers in "Earthday" at the Village Green and a call for Spring Cleaning. This is a great time to freshen up our roadsides and our mountain trails. Join in the fun as friends gather to the Gorges, Panthertown Valley, and Friends of Lake Glenville. Earth stewardship month reminds all of us that we are the keepers of the mountain and it needs our helping hands. The dogwood blooms and the honeysuckle plants its perfume across the mountain.
The Tour de Cashiers is always a mountain highlight. Last year was one of the largest number of entries. With various lenghts and level of rides everyone is welcome. While biking comes to Cashiers....runners migrate to Highlands for the annual 5K Race.
Mother Nature awakens the soil and you can almost feel it move. Plants sales, the tilling of gardens. There are craft shows, wine festivals, and the end of May brings anglers to the mountain for the annual fly fishing tournament. Spring, fall, and winter are the best times to fly fish. Jackson County's flying fishing map is a guideline for those wanting to fish.
The Bascom welcomes the summer with the "Sprrits Wine Festival". Fine wine, auctions, and international cuisine play a big part in the week.
Summer highlights... June is the beginning of the Chamber Music Festival with venues in both Highlands and Cashiers. The Highlands/Cashiers players are busy preparing for productions. Car shows...the annual Make A Wish Foundation Charity event, the Annual Rotary Arts and Crafts shows in Highlands and Cashiers, June highlight is the Mountain Bear Festival for the Humanes Society.
Summer of course has the most activities. With outdoor activities such as whitewater rafting, biking, hiking, treking to the waterfalls, and birding, one would think that would be it. The is just the beginning.
The 4th of July is ushered in with the Cashiers Mountain Music Festival. The area explodes with fun, laughter, and music as we all celebrate America's birthday. Colored lights light up the sky over Lake Glenville, Cashiers, and Highlands. The mountain loves celebrating the fourth.
The Motoring Festival in Highlands is a highlight to all car buffs. More crafts shows and bazaars. The Bascom treats us to the Mountain in Bloom. Lectures, garden tours. The mountain shows off its colors of the rhododendrums.
There are garden parties and cocktail parties...campfires and campouts..tennis camps and golf tournaments. It surely must be time to relax and just find a spot to enjoy those cool mountain breezes. Folks are out on Fridays to enjoy the Groovin' on the Green...Music always sounds sweet with Mother Nature as its backdrop.
People are running in the Bark for Life Relay and the Relay on the Mountain for the Cancer Society. The Highlands Cashiers plateau is abuzz with activity. The Designer Showhouse is just gearing up. Antique shows, barbeques...on it goes.
Fall is in full swing with the "Leaf Peepers" and the fall festivals. Driving the Blue Ridge Parkway is always a favorite. You can join the parkway from off Hwy 64 and Hwy 215. Besides the beauty of the mountains one of the biggest events in the area is the Cashiers Leaf Festival. Talented folks from various states plus one of our own residents "Steve Martin" playing with his bluegrass group. What started as a few booths has not grown to over 120. Be sure to explore the arts and crafts created by magic fingers.Highlands has another fall festival with the Bascom hold the Autum Gala and Auction.
The Dahlias are bursting with color as the Highlands Historical Society focus on their gorgeous blossoms as car buffs enjoy more Motoring Festivals. As the trees lose their leaves it gives the moutain a moment to breath. Not for long as the Highlands Culinary weekend gets into high gear.
Thanksgiving is a time to be thanksful for all our family and friends and our internet family. Gngerbread contests are held around the world. As the mountain is slowly slipping into its sleepy gear, the winter holiday season is rearing its head. From Christmas parades, Christmas carols, Santa Claus, Hannaka, and the Sader people gather to enjoy the moment of the spirit. The festival of trees decorate the Bascom. Joy to the World. May we each do our share of making it a better place.
The New Year arrives....are we ready?
During winter you will find some of the best fly fishing in the mountain. pp
The Highlands Cashiers Chamber Music Festival has entertained the area for more than 30 years. The Bascom - the new $8Million cultural arts center is not to be missed. Look for the covered wooden bridge on Hwy 64W but enter to the right off Oak Street. Open all year, you will find the gift shop a delightful place to shop as well as the ability to participate in more than 60 workshops or events during the year. There is something for all ages.
Highlands has always focused and been proud of the fact of the vast cultural arts activities found in the area. Because the list is lengthy I have devoted a complete page to Highlands The Arts. Be sure to check it out as there is something to enjoy for all seasons.
You might even have to sample Kilwins fresh lemon, orange, or limeades as well as their dark raspberry fudge. The last Saturday of the month during January, February, and March you will find folks at the Barn Dances held at the Bascom. Come enjoy the fun!