what to do while exploring the Black Mountain

Images of the small mountain town of Black Mountain have been captured by many writers, from Nicholas Sparks to Patricia Cornwell. If you are coming to Black Mountain for the first time or have lived here for years, here are some ways to enjoy the beautiful town and its surroundings.

The Black Mountain Visitor Center offers a variety of information as a starting point for exploring Black Mountain. From restaurants to local events and outdoor activities, the Visitor Center has it all.

“Twenty-five to 30 percent of the questions I answer are about people wanting to move to Black Mountain,” said Sharon Tabor, director of the Black Mountain Swannanoa Chamber of Commerce.

For locals, the Visitor Center also offers many volunteer opportunities to connect with the community. Opportunities include working in the community garden, organizing at the Swannanoa Valley Christian Ministry, sorting food at Bounty & Soul and helping out at the First Baptist as well as the Presbyterian Church.

Locals and visitors alike can enjoy all that the Montagne Noire has to offer.

The Black Mountain Beautification Committee, which looks after all the planters in town, the gardens at Town Square Park, and a host of other projects, also offers plenty of volunteer opportunities for gardeners who want to get involved. imply.

Food, restaurants and eateries

Black Mountain has a wide range of restaurants, cafes and eateries in its town center.

“You have Greek and Italian and South African and Chinese and Japanese and Thai,” Tabor said. “We have French, Argentinian and Cuban, and for a city of this size you have very diverse dining options.”

The Visitor Center provides information on which restaurants have outdoor seating, cater to specific needs, and of course what is served.

Many local restaurants – such as My Father’s Pizza, located on Cherry Street and offering gourmet pizzas and other classic Italian dishes, Trailhead Restaurant & Bar, located on State Street and offering everything from tacos to burgers and sandwiches, and Louise’s Kitchen, located on Black Mountain Avenue, which offers Southern cuisine for breakfast, has become, among other things, a staple of the Black Mountain dining scene.

Downtown Black Mountain is home to shops, restaurants, and Town Square, a beautiful park.

For a place like Louise’s Kitchen, where diners are split evenly between visitors and locals, staff say seeing that local connection means a lot. Chrissa Gulotta, one of the restaurant’s owners, said she saw customers first come in as children and keep coming until they left for college.

Open seven days a week, Gulotta said customers can count on Louise’s Kitchen to provide consistent service to the community.

“We have so many guests that everyone knows their name,” Gulotta said. “The locals are so important that we try to make sure they know they are really important to us.”

Music, events and live shows

“There’s always music somewhere,” Tabor said, adding that the visitor center maintains a schedule of current and upcoming shows.

Venues such as White Horse Black Mountain, Pisgah Brewing Company and Silverado host music and performances throughout the year.

David Quinn, owner of Pisgah Brewing, said the brewery offers free live music every Thursday and Sunday. On the first Sunday of every month, the brewery hosts a Grateful Dead cover band.

“The other three Sundays are open jams,” Quinn said. “We have local musicians on rotation on Thursday nights.”

Shows at Pisgah Brewing last from 6:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. Celebrating 17 years in business, the brewery began as the fifth brewery in Buncombe County.

White Horse Black Mountain also hosts a host of performances including Celtic jams, blues, jazz, rock ‘n’ roll and open mics. With live shows throughout the week, White Horse maintains a full schedule.

“It’s as eclectic as it gets,” said owner Bob Hinkle. “I like to love the acts myself because I have to listen to all of them.”

White Horse Black Mountain offers a wide variety of eclectic musicians in concert.

Upcoming shows at the White Horse include a July 21 screening of the movie “Remembering the Great Flood”, a weekend of blues and other jams July 23-24, and an open mic night July 26.

If you’re looking for art and culture, the Black Mountain Center for the Arts hosts a variety of events ranging from local art in its upper gallery to comedy shows, theater and concerts. The centre’s latest exhibition, Art from the Garden, is available until July 29.

BMCA also hosts classes and workshops for artists and creatives of all ages. Ballet, dance, pottery, music, visual arts, yoga and theater are among the center’s most popular classes.

Hiking and other outdoor activities

“About 50% of people who come to the visitor center want to hike,” Tabor said.

The Visitor Center offers information on the Blue Ridge Parkway as well as a collection of approximately 70 trails from Point Lookout to Warren Wilson. The center continues to add new trails to its database, such as those from Old Fort to Curtis Creek.

For those less inclined to walk in the woods but still want to enjoy a walk, Lake Tomahawk offers paved trails and natural scenery. The nearby small town of Montreat also offers hikes of varying difficulty, from paved footpaths to steep climbs with impressive views.

Stop by the Visitor Center to stay up to date on events and happenings in and around Black Mountain.

In addition to hiking, the Black Mountain community enjoys other outdoor activities including running, biking, and kayaking. Places such as the WNC Outdoor Collective create a meeting space for outdoor groups and help organize races and other events for outdoor enthusiasts.

“We’re focused on what we do in terms of group walks, group runs, supporting the local community, running workshops, get-togethers that support the outdoor industry,” he said. said Lincoln Walters, owner and operator of WNC Outdoor Collective. “The outdoor industry being those who are passionate.”

Ezra Maille covers the town of Black Mountain, Montreat and the Swannanoa Valley. Contact him at 828-230-3324 or [email protected] Please support local journalism with access to more breaking news by subscribe.