Enjoy a safe holiday weekend; have fun at home

Aug 29, 2013

You may be thinking Labor Day is a good chance to take one more small vacation before summer is officially over.

However, we encourage you to kick back and relax at home in Haywood County this weekend. Take a moment to look around at the beautiful vacation-like setting that we usually take for granted and soak it all in.

Not only can you enjoy a day relaxing at the lake or on the river — there are plenty of local events that you don’t want to miss around the county.

Canton will be kicking off its 107th Labor Day Celebration Friday afternoon and will keep it going until Monday with the Labor Day Parade. Throughout the weekend there will be live music, carnival rides for children, a craft show, a basketball tournament and more. It is definitely a long tradition worth honoring.

The 43rd annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival will be highlighting Appalachia’s best music and dancers on Friday and Saturday night at Lake Junaluska. We can’t think of a better view as you enjoy an evening of bluegrass music and clogging. Many bluegrass greats, like David Holt, started out at this festival many years ago and still returns to play. Go see the Ross Brothers, Whitewater Bluegrass Co., Lorraine Conard Band, Mike Pilgrim and so many more. Performances starts at 5 p.m. both nights and tickets can be purchased at www.smokymountainfolkfestival.com.

On Saturday, more than 20 breweries, including our three local brewers, will gather at the American Legion Ball Field in Waynesville for the inaugural Waynesville Craft Beer Fest. Kevin Sandefur of BearWaters Brewing and other organizers have worked hard to pull this off and we should show our support for our local brewing businesses.

As of Thursday, the 500 tickets available were almost sold out, and many attendees will be coming from surrounding counties. Those people will likely spend money outside the festival at local restaurants and shops — which is a major boost to our economy at the end of the summer season. So if you still have a chance, get a ticket and check it out from 1 to 5 p.m. before making your way to Main Street for the last Block Party of the year.

If you are looking to do some local shopping, how about heading out to Maggie Valley for the annual Maggie Valley Labor Day Craft Show at the festival grounds. The annual show is free and features many artisans selling furniture, paintings, handmade jewelry and other traditional crafts.

There is something for everyone to enjoy this weekend without having to venture far from home. We hope everyone has a fun and safe Labor Day weekend