Chris Patrick Bryant, HNG Chamber President

Every summer, visitors from all over the country descend on our idyllic small town for an escape into the mountains. We are wholly unique from other mountain destinations, and our community of small businesses provides an eclectic variation for all to enjoy! We open our doors to throngs of summer guests, and your Chamber is hard at work to provide information to visitors looking for places to stay, eat, shop, and relax.

Though the Gorge is rich with natural beauty, we saw an opportunity to further beautify and unify it through a unique campaign; “There is Power in the Flower!” This unique project, in partnership with the Lake Lure Flowering Bridge, and the Chimney Rock Village Community Development Association, seeks to beautify the streets of the Hickory Nut Gorge using a cohesive floral color spectrum along the main corridor through the Gorge. More than 40 businesses have joined in the program! Be watchful for the beautiful blue and yellow flowers in bloom along the highway as you drive through this summer.

While the natural beauty entices visitors, there are two words that seem to always be conjoined with Lake Lure – “Dirty Dancing”. Our annual “Dirty Dancing Festival at Lake Lure” garnered the attendance of more than 5,000 attendees over two days during last year’s event! The anticipation builds with this year’s festivities on August 24 and 25, 2018. A fantastic line up of entertainment, including “The Lake Lure Cloggers,” “The Extraordinaires,” “Silk Groove,” and “FlashBack the Party Band” have been confirmed. The Asheville Ballet will be hosting dance lessons, live entertainment, and re-creations of favorite dance scenes from the film. An arts and crafts artisan village, beer and wine garden, unique food vendors, and festival merchants will ensure an immersive experience. The outdoor movie screening and the famous “lake lift competition” are sure to be crowd favorites this year. We are seeking the help of our incredible community to volunteer your time to ensure our visitors have an unforgettable experience! Please visit www.dirtydancingfestival.com or emailing the chamber office at info@hickorynutchamber.org. A complimentary ticket to the festival will be provided to you as a volunteer.

There are many other incredible events, special occasions, and activities to enjoy throughout the Gorge. Our online calendar at www.hickorynutchamber.org is your go-to resource and centralized calendar for everything happening in our area. You can also submit your own events through our website using the “Submit New Event” link on our events calendar page. Help us keep your business in the forefront of our membership and visitors by taking advantage of this feature.

The Chamber of Hickory Nut Gorge strives to be a unifying force for our business community, residents, and local government organizations. Your continued support, annual membership dues, and promotion of events hosted by the Chamber allow us to continue our efforts here and provide the funds to support our efforts. Thank you!