Last night I went to the Wilson Center for Nature Discovery at Grandfather Mountain. WOW! It is a beautiful, state of the art facility. It is located half way up the mountain and is adjacent to the Wildlife Habitats. It doubles in size of the Nature Museum with more than a dozen interactive exhibits. You will be able to explore the natural history, fern, fauna, geology and weather of the mountain.
Now you are able to watch films and attend fascinating programs inside the ADA-accessible auditorium. You can look up the speakers that are slated for this summer. Outside the center there are learning spaces in the amphitheater, a pavilion and botanical gardens.
Hopefully the Wilson Center will be fully open in early July, Until then, the Nature Museum is open with limited access.
Mildreds Grill (Mildred was the bear that Mr. Morton had picnics with)is located inside the Wilson Center, overlooking the mountain. You can order a picnic to go and have lunch in one of the designated picnic settings. There are also grills by the picnic tables for you to use. Make sure you look up the picnic areas before you go so you can plan your trip. You are welcome to bring your own picnic and enjoy the beautiful views.
The summer Series Music Concert starts June 23rd. in Tate Evans Park. They are every Thursday during the summer. Bring your chairs and enjoy the music. There are food trucks for you to enjoy some great food! It is a fun to listen to the music and even dance.
Banner House Museum is open now from 11:00am till 3:00pm Wednesdays through Saturdays. Walking tours of downtown Banner Elk depart at noon Wednesday through Saturday. They will leave from the Museum.
Make sure you try the Banner Elk Farmers Market, located in front of the Old Banner Elk School. Plants, flowers, Cheeses, local raised grass fed beef, chicken and pork, jams, cakes, vegetables are all there for you to buy. Enjoy some of the best homemade goods around. They are there every Thursday from 5:00-7:00pm.
The Watauga Famers Market in Boone is now open from 8:00am till noon on Saturdays. It is next to Horn of the West and the Boone Gardens. I went there last week and saw the most beautiful mushrooms. I had never seen such a display of mushrooms that you can eat, I truly just thought they looked like a piece of art. You can buy pottery, wood turning bowls, art, jewelry, fresh vegetables, meats, goat cheeses made in the area. Whatever you do, try the homemade country ham biscuits, sweet rolls and coffee. The line was so long for those goodies that I didn’t even try but I will return as it is one the great things to do on Saturday mornings in Boone.
At the end of the day, come and sit by the river at the fire pit and enjoy watching the fireflies and listening to the river. If you want to use the hot tub, it is on the upstairs porch and ready for you to relax. The river is well lit at night and it just beautiful. I never tire of looking at the Elk River and hearing the sounds of the hills.
I hope to see you soon!