Festival honors Appalachian heritage, national park history Sept. 15

art mtnlifeGreat Smoky Mountains National Park will celebrate Appalachian folkways at its annual Mountain Life Festival from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 15 at the Mountain Farm Museum.

Activities during the free event will include hearth cooking, apple butter and apple cider making, blacksmithing, lye soap making, food preservation, broom making, quilting and chair bottoming. Artifacts and historic photographs from the park’s collection will be on display and local musicians will provide entertainment.

The centerpiece of the event will be the sorghum syrup demonstration. The syrup is made much the same way it was produced a hundred or more years ago, using a horse-powered cane mill and wood-fired cooker.

This year’s event is dedicated to long-term volunteer David Higgins, who passed away in March of this year. Higgins donated more than 15,000 hours helping to maintain the open air Mountain Farm Museum at Oconaluftee.

The Mountain Farm Museum is located adjacent to the park’s Oconaluftee Visitor Center on US 441 in Great Smoky Mountains National Park, two miles north of Cherokee.

828.497.1904.

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