New River Trail Challenge


In just six weeks endurance race participants – individuals and teams – will gather in Foster Falls for the New River Trail Challenge.

You can choose to take the challenge as an individual by biking, kayaking and running the course yourself or you can choose to team up with one or two others. [more on New River Trail Challenge]

Weekly Blue Ridge Parkway Activities


Summer is still not over and below are a few weekly activities sponsored by the National park Service on the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Rocky Knob Campground, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 167
Evening campfire ranger talks on Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 p.m. Call (540) 745- 9662 for info. Non-campers are welcome!

Rocky Knob Visitor Center, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 169
Open daily from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. with maps, information, hiking trails, and a picnic area. Call (540) 745-9662 for more information.

Mabry Mill, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 176
Provides daily demonstrations of early 20th century Blue Ridge life. Activities include a variety of traditional Appalachian crafts including spinning, weaving, basket weaving, and blacksmithing.  Talks of the mill are led at 11 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays. Additionally, Sundays feature traditional mountain music and dancing.

Blue Ridge Music Center, Blue Ridge Parkway Milepost 213
The Blue Ridge Music Center is open from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. seven days a week through October 30. The Roots of American Music exhibit and Mid-Day Mountain Music (12-4pm) are free everyday!  The center features visitor information, hiking, gift shop, and museum. Call  (276) 236-5309 for more information.

Bluegrass Fever


On Aug. 7, the Blue Ridge Music Center present Bluegrass Fever, a Sunday concert kicking off a great week of music at the Galax Old-time Fiddlers’ Convention.

Bluegrass Fever features Michael Cleveland & Flamekeeper plus Galax’s own Houston Drive. Michael Cleveland has performed with Rhonda Vincent, Dale Ann Bradley, Vince Gill, Marty Stuart, J.D. Crowe and the New South, Audie Blaylock and Redline, Melvin Goins and others.

Houston Drive will kick off Bluegrass Fever. The band is named in memory of banjoist Houston Caldwell. The band also won the blue ribbon for best bluegrass band at the Galax Fiddlers’ Convention.

Tickets for the Sunday August 7 concert are $20 or the earlybird price of $18 by Aug 3. Children 12 and under are free. Concert starts at 7 p.m. and seating opens at 5:30 p.m. Smokehouse barbecue is available at the concert.

Upcoming Blue Ridge Music Center Performances:

  • *Aug 20th 7pm Mountain & Bluegrass-Gospel: Junior Sisk & Ramblers Choice/Rich in Tradition / Sonrise. Free
  • Aug 27th 7pm Virginia Bluegrass: Jesse McReynolds/Gerald Anderson Band. $15/$13
  • *Sept 3rd 7pm The Next Generation – Youth Concert! Snyder Family Band/Adam McPeak & Mountain Thunder/ Loose Strings. Free
  • Sept 10th 7pm Stringbands of Surry County: Toast String Stretchers/Zephyr Lightning Bolts. $10/$8

* Free concerts are made possible with your support through the Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation.

The Blue Ridge Music Center is located at milepost 213 on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Tickets available at Barrs Fiddle Shop, the Galax Visitor Center and online at or by calling (276) 236-5309. Bring the whole family. Lawnchairs and blankets recommended. Picnic food is permitted. Smokehouse BBQ available on concert nights. No pets in the amphitheater.

The Music Center has evening concerts every weekend all summer through mid-September at the foot of beautiful Fisher Peak (only 10 miles from Galax). The Blue Ridge Music Center is open 9-5 seven days a week through October 30. Come see the new Roots of American Music exhibition and sit awhile in our covered breezeway and listen to Mid-Day Mountain Music from 1 until-4 p.m. daily. There is no fee for Visitor Center activities.

Grayson County Independence Festival

If you’re short on Independence Day plans, head to Grayson County, Virginia and enjoy a 5K fun run, a bottle boat regatta, a watermelon eating contests, and, of course, amazing fireworks to top off the night. The fun begins July 3rd and last through July 4th. There will be music, entertainment and food, so the whole family can have a great time!

God and Country Celebration

The God and Country Celebration in Yadkin County is a daylong town festival with a patriotic theme featuring music, food, crafts, parade, speeches and fireworks. This popular event will take place the Saturday before July 4th and will begin at 9:30 am. Estimates put attendance at this popular event between 10,000 and 15,000 people. The celebration starts off with a parade that features floats and bands, which compete for prizes.  At noon, music begins on the music stage at the school and features local and regional bands performing bluegrass, old-time string band, gospel, and rock & roll. Beginning at 6:00pm, there is a patriotic program featuring a special speaker each year who talks about “God and Country”. There is also gospel singing and a special feature to the evening program honoring local veterans, which includes military music.  Fireworks begin at 9:00pm.

Alleghany Co. Fiddlers Convention

The Alleghany County Fiddlers Convention has gained a lot of reputation because of its family oriented atmosphere. In here everywhere you turn will be happiness and good vibe. People go to Alleghany County Fiddlers Convention to have fun and socialize with other people with similar interests such as music. You might wondering what would you expect from this Convention is basically you will find fun, a lot of good music, friendly people, good food and some competition in the music jams. It is definitely worth it to go to the Alleghany County Fiddlers Convention to have a good time, enjoy good music and to see the beautiful mountain setting.

Wayside Bluegrass Festival

In the Wayside Bluegrass Festival everybody is welcome. The festival is located three miles south of Stuart, Virginia.  This is a very family oriented festival in which several artists perform their Bluegrass music and this year will take place from July 13 to July 16. The location provides the campers with rough camping and electrical hook up camping. This year artists like Crusher Run, Ten-Brooks, Virginia Sky, and many others will be performing. If you enjoy family reunion and Bluegrass music you can’t let this opportunity go away.