Summer weather is still stubbornly holding out for at least a few more weeks. But for many, the activities of summer come to an end this weekend.
Labor Day marks the unofficial end to the season: Vacations have been had. Children are back in school. There is a slight lull in tourism across Western North Carolina as many wait impatiently for the leaves to turn.
So why not end the season with a celebration? Whether you want to stay close to home or venture farther afield while the weather is nice, there are many entertainment and festival options throughout our mountain towns. Here is a list of Labor Day weekend events in Asheville and WNC.
73rd Annual North Carolina Apple Festival
August 30–September 2, 2019 | Hendersonville
The North Carolina Apple Festival has been Western North Carolina’s premier family-friendly festival for more than 70 years. Enjoy four days of free fun, from the Opening Ceremony with the Apple Ambassador to the King Apple Parade on Labor Day afternoon. The festival also includes one of the best known street fairs in the Carolinas. There will be freshly picked apples, arts and crafts, festival food, and free entertainment at the Historic Courthouse on Hendersonville’s beautiful Main Street.
Learn more: ncapplefestival.org
Labor Day Weekend Celebration
August 30–September 2, 2019 | Rumbling Bald Resort on Lake Lure
Celebrate with family and friends at Rumbling Bald Resort. Enjoy a family-fun pool party, beachside cookouts, marshmallow roast, and more. On Monday, celebrate Labor Day at the Bald Mountain Golf Course’s Red, White, and Blue Golf Tournament. Bring the family down to the beach for a weekend of fun! For members and resort guests only.
Learn more: rumblingbald.com
50th Annual Smoky Mountain Folk Festival
August 30–31, 2019 @ 6:30PM each day | Lake Junaluska
Enjoy two nights of the finest Southern Appalachian traditional music and dance at the Smoky Mountain Folk Festival. The main stage shows begin at 6:30PM each evening on the grand stage of Stuart Auditorium at the Lake Junaluska Conference and Retreat Center. Both nights include a rich variety of the region’s finest ballad singers, banjo players, buck dancers, fiddlers, string bands, and square dance teams, as well as the marvelous sounds of bagpipes, dulcimer, harmonica, jew’s harp, saws, spoons, and folk ensembles.
Learn more and see package prices: lakejunaluska.com
Fall Outdoor Concert Series
August 30, 2019 @ 7:00–8:45PM | Brevard
Join the Transylvania County Library at the Library Amphitheater as the sun sets for the kickoff of the Fall Outdoor Concert Series! Songs From The Road Band is a North Carolina-based quartet that has collectively received top accolades in the bluegrass, Americana, and jazz genres. The band is currently touring in support of their fourth studio album, Road To Nowhere.
Learn more: library.transylvaniacounty.org
Concerts on the Creek
August 30, 2019 @ 7:00–9:00PM | Sylva
Bring a picnic blanket and chair to enjoy Concerts on the Creek at Sylva’s Bridge Park. The Maggie Valley Band will be playing live Americana music for you to enjoy. Labor Day weekend closes out Concerts on the Creek’s 10th season. Food truck and craft beer vendors may be available.
Learn more: discoverjacksonnc.com
“The Complete History of America (abridged)”
August 30 & 31, 2019 @ 7:30–10:00PM | Brevard Little Theatre
Experience 600 years of history in 6,000 seconds! From Washington to Watergate, New World to New World Order, “The Complete History of America (abridged)” is a rollercoaster ride through the glorious quagmire that is American history. Dozens of landmark events and trends are mined for comic gold, given an irreverent boost, and turned into something accessible and alive. It’s a slapstick tour that’s as hysterical as it is historical.
Learn more: explorebrevard.com
Labor Day Weekend Family Fun
August 31–September 2, 2019 | Chimney Rock
Enjoy the last holiday weekend of summer by experiencing what makes Chimney Rock the ideal place to live and play. Hike on one of the Park’s many trails, including the Great Woodland Adventure trail with 12 interactive education stations. Or join Fox Mountain Guides for a real rock climbing experience. Cost included with park admission.
Learn more: chimneyrockpark.com
Maggie Valley Arts & Crafts Show
August 31–September 1, 2019 | Maggie Valley
Artisans from all over the Southeast will be in attendance at Maggie Valley’s largest and longest running seasonal arts and crafts show. Seasonal items, furniture, goat milk soaps, jewelry, paintings, photography, pottery, wooden bowls, yard art, and more will be featured at the event. Shop a variety of handmade treasures, enjoy chainsaw art demonstrations, and partake of lots of festival food!
Learn more: maggievalley.org
Labor Day Weekend @ Emerald Village
August 31–September 1, 2019 | Little Switzerland
Head out to Little Switzerland for a rocking good time. Activities include gem mining, gold panning, and a local craft market. Kids can enjoy free mine tours, as well as hamburgers and hot dogs from Reggie’s Grill. Everyone can enjoy free guided hikes, and Black-Light Mine Tours on Friday and Saturday nights. Most events free. Black-Light Mine Tour $15 for adults, $10 for students.
Learn more: emeraldvillage.com
2nd Annual Downtown Asheville Labor Day Weekend Festival of the Arts
August 31–September 1, 2019 @ 10:00AM–5:00PM | Downtown Asheville
This Labor Day Weekend art affair will feature a collection of national and regional artists specializing in handmade works of art. There will be painters, potters, jewelers, glass blowers, and many more. Meet on Asheville’s historic Pack Square. Free admission.
Learn more: artfestival.com
Cashiers Rotary Arts & Crafts Fair
August 31–September 1, 2019 @ 10:00AM–5:00PM | Cashiers
The Rotary Club of Cashiers Valley presents ART FOR A CAUSE: a biannual arts and crafts fair. Enjoy some of the finest craftsmen and artisans from the Southeast and delightful bites to keep you fueled up. Artwork, clothing, furniture, jewelry, pottery, quilts, homemade jams and relishes, and more are available for purchase. 100% of proceeds from the suggested entrance donation of $3–5 benefits the Cashiers Rotary Club Charities fund.
Learn more: cashiersrotary.org
Saturday Night Lights: Tryon Summer Block Party
August 31, 2019 @ 6:00–9:00PM | TIEC
Enjoy family fun in Legends Plaza while the horses take a summer break (Tryon Stadium is getting a footing upgrade). Saturday Night Lights is a signature Tryon Resort event series featuring food, fun, live music, and more every Saturday through October. But of all the events, you won’t want to miss this special Tryon Block Party, featuring a chalk art contest. Bring the whole family: admission, parking, and carousel rides are all free!
Learn more: tryon.coth.com
53rd Annual Shindig on the Green
August 31, 2019 @ 7:00–10:00PM | Downtown Asheville
Bring your instruments, families, friends, lawn chairs, and blankets to the Bascom Lamar Lunsford Stage in Pack Square Park. Locals and visitors alike come together “along about sundown” for a stage show and informal jam sessions around the park. Experience the beautiful music and dance traditions of Southern Appalachia on a summer evening in the mountains. Labor Day weekend closes out Shindig on the Green’s 53rd season. Free to participate. Concessions available.
Learn more: folkheritage.org
113th Canton Labor Day Festival
September 1–2, 2019 | Canton
Since 1906, the Canton Labor Day Festival has served up food, fun, and entertainment in Sorrells Park in downtown Canton. Billed as the oldest festival of its kind in the South, the festival draws up to 15,000 music lovers over the weekend. The Oak Ridge Boys, Balsam Range, Joe Lasher, and more will provide live music. There is also a handicraft expo, mountain gospel experience, the Papertown Kid’s Village, a vintage car show, and the Labor Day parade at 10:00am on Monday.
Learn more: cantonlaborday.com