Friday, January 9, 2009

Townsend Tennessee: Smokies 75th Anniversary Events

Over the next several weeks, Townsend, Tennessee will be hosting several events in conjunction with the year-long celebration of the 75th anniversary of Great Smoky Mountains National Park.
Townsend, also known as the “Peaceful Side of the Smokies”, is located roughly 15 miles west of Gatlinburg.

January 17: Walking Tour of Townsend and Tremont

Representatives from the Little River Railroad Museum will lead a short walking tour of Townsend or Tremont (visitors choice) showing railroad track locations and the structures that were part of the lumbering and logging operations that took place from 1901 to 1939 in and along side of what is now the National Park. Photos and other materials will be shown to help describe how people lived and worked during this period. Attendees will meet at the museum in Townsend at 10 AM. For more information email or call 865-448-2211.

February 5-8: Winter Heritage Festival

The Winter Heritage Festival is a celebration of the cultural heritage the region with classes, tours, exhibits, music, hikes, and demonstrations. Examples of programs to be presented are: stories of mountain life, logging and railroad days, illustrated talks and displays about people and the land, history of the Eastern band of the Cherokee Indians, mountain music and dance, creation of the Park, Civil War in the Smoky Mountains, and more. Please visit or call 865-448-0044 for more information.

February 13-15: A Townsend Love Affair

Local artisans showcase their talents in paintings, woodcarving, pottery and quilts while musicians share their gift of bluegrass, fiddle tunes and making instruments. Dancers teach clogging lessons to children of all ages, while historians and nature photographers share their knowledge of the Smokies and storytellers spin their tales. Little River Railroad volunteers share the history of the railroad and its impact on the Townsend area. Call 865-448-2211 for more information.

March 14: Tremont 40th Anniversary Scavenger Hunt

Gather your friends and family and create a team for the Legacy of Tremont Scavenger Hunt! This special edition hunt will honor both GSMNP's 75th anniversary and Tremont's 40th anniversary. The scavenger hunt will review the cultural and natural history of the park while exploring issues and resources that affect the park today. The hunt will range over most of the Park, using roads and trails to access particular areas, and some questions may require some research in order to answer.

There is a registration fee of $100 per team. You can have as many people on your team, provided they all fit into one vehicle. A registration form must be completed and submitted to Tremont no later than 4 p.m. on Monday, March 9, 2009. The event will take place over a 24-hour period. Teams will receive their scavenger hunt list via e-mail at 5 p.m. on Friday, March 13th and must return their completed list to Tremont by 5 p.m. on Saturday, March 14th when tallying begins. A light dinner for participants and sponsors will be available and winners will be announced and prizes awarded at 6 p.m.
For more information, email at or call 865/448-6709.

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