New Years Polar Plunge
January 1st, 2019: Prizes will be awarded for Best Costume, Oldest and Youngest Plunger and Plunger Who Traveled the Farthest. There will also be hot chocolate, music, and a bon fire to warm up with after you’ve taken the plunge. FREE to attend, Plunge fee is $20.00. All proceeds will go to support local charities. Registration begins at 9 am. The Beach on Lake Lure.
Asheville Fringe Arts Festival
January 20-27, 2019: The Fringe Festival bring unique ( and sometimes rather quirky) performance art to the Asheville area, with everything from dance, acting, art installations and more. The purpose of the festival is to have local artists bring their craft to the “edge” of creativity. Several area art studios will host this festival, so plan accordingly to see everything. For more information, check out the Asheville Fringe website.
Asheville Restaurant Week
January 21 – 27th, 2019: Enjoy Asheville’s wonderfully varied cuisine during Asheville Restaurant Week, taking place January 21-27, 2019. What is Asheville Restaurant Week? “Asheville Restaurant Week is your opportunity to try as many great Asheville restaurants as your schedule allows for four incredibly low fixed prices. Ever wondered about that restaurant you thought might be out of your price range? Asheville Restaurant Week is your chance to give it a try with the security of knowing exactly what you will be spending.” (exploreasheville.com) Reservations are strongly recommended.
Biltmore Costume Exhibit: Vanderbilt House Party
February 8th To May 27th 2019: New for 2019: Biltmore’s new costume exhibit explores what it was like to be a guest of the Vanderbilts during the gilded age. Included in admission.
Totally 80s Retro Ski Weekend
February 21 – 24, 2019: Ready for a totally tubular day in the snow? Put on your dayglo ski gear and head to Beech Mountain Feb 18-21 for the Totally 80s Retro Ski Weekend. There will be 80s themed activities, contests, and music, including a Madonna look-a-like contest and 80s tribute band. There is even an appearance from a delorean and the Ghostbusters Ectomobile. For more information, visit the Beech Mountain website.
Asheville Mardi Gras Parade
Sun March 3, 2019: Head downtown on February 11th for Asheville’s Mardi Gras Parade! This family-friendly parade can be participated in, or just enjoyed from the sidelines. Feathers, sparkles, fun and frivolity are present and welcomed, so dress up if you can. The parade will start at 3pm, and marches down Wall St., Battery Park Ave, Haywood St. and Page Ave. Look for dancers, roller skaters, and entertainers to make an appearance, so bundle up and head out!
April 1 – May 23rd 2019: Visit the Biltmore Estate in the spring to witness a spectacular display of 75000+ tulips in a rainbow of colors. By mid to late April, these tulips will be met with brilliant azaleas in a 20 acre garden, highlighting the beauty of the grand estate. For more information, visit the Biltmore Estate website.
Friday Night Drum Circle
Each Friday Starting April 5th: A true Ashevillian Event since 2001. Come join the fun as the crowd gathers at Pritchard Park each Friday evening through the warm months from around 6 to 10 pm. Join in to play drums, cowbells, or any percussion instrument, to dance, or simply watch. Free.
15th Annual Bread Festival
April 13 & 14, 2019: Artisan bread bakers from the Southeast will be selling their bread and sharing their expertise. There will be hands on workshops and demonstrations and samples! At New Belgium Brewery.
Easter Hat Parade in Dillsboro
April 20, 2019: At 2pm, April 20th, hats of all shapes, colors, and sizes will shine through the streets of Dillsboro. The hats will be judged based on varying categories, such as tiniest and best-smelling. Don’t worry if you don’t have one- you can make a hat there! The Easter Bunny will arrive in an antique car.
Carolina Mountain Cheese Fest
Saturday April 27th 2019: Join Highland Brewing to celebrate wedges, curds, shreds and grates of everyone’s favorite snack. This festival brings producers and creamery owners from all over the Southeast together to share their passion for cheese. There will be milking demonstrations and plenty of vendors to satiate any cheese-lovers cravings. For more information, visit the festival website.
May 10th – 12th, 2019: The Lake Eden Arts Festival which combines a diverse blend of music and dancing, poetry slams, folk art & craft exhibitions, outdoor adventure, and the LEAFlet Kid’s Village. LEAF offers new and exciting cultural connections. The Spring 2019 LEAF festival in Black Mountain is for the whole family. Get tickets early. Visit the LEAF website.
May 11 – 12, 2019: Craftspeople at the Folk Art Center share their inspiration and expertise in a variety of textile arts. Saturday demonstrations include: quilting and appliqué, doll making, weaving, mixed media fiber arts, clothing design, printing and surface design, tapestry weaving, and natural dyeing. Two fashion shows on Sunday! Free Admission.
Downtown After 5
May 17 – Sept 20th (Every 3rd Friday): May 17, June 21, July 19, August 16, and September 20th. Come on downtown for the best festival around. This concert event series kicks off in May, and goes through September 20th. Food and beverages available for purchase onsite. FREE
Memorial Day Concert and Ceremony
Monday May 27th, 2019: Roger McGuire Green, 2:30 PM. This free event features the Army National Guard’s Army Band playing before and after the ceremony.