Upcoming events and things to do in Asheville, NC. Below is a list of events for festivals, concerts, art exhibitions, group meetups and more.

Tuesday, September 21, 2021
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Sep 21 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Included with admission

Our fun-for-all-ages botanical model train displays invite you to experience our grounds in an engaging new way. Located in the Conservatory in the Walled Garden, the displays feature replicas of structures connected with Biltmore and its founder George Vanderbilt. Each beautifully executed piece was handcrafted from such natural elements as leaves, bark, and twigs.

In compliance with state and local mandates related to COVID-19, all guests must enter the Conservatory via the ADA entrance in the back and follow a one-way route.

Biltmore: Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty
Sep 21 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Image result for Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty

Included with admission

A unique-to-Biltmore, large-scale outdoor sculpture will be crafted and installed in Antler Hill Village this spring by Patrick Dougherty. Over the last three decades, this internationally-acclaimed artist has combined his carpentry skills and love of nature to build over 300 of these wondrous works, captivating the hearts and imaginations of viewers worldwide.

Image: Close Ties (2006) Scottish Basketmakers Circle, Dingwall, Scotland. Photo: Fin Macrae
NOTE: This is an example of Patrick Dougherty’s work; the artist will create Biltmore’s unique structure in Antler Hill Village this spring.

Summer at Biltmore
Sep 21 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

See the source image

Summer at Biltmore offers an abundance of opportunities to explore our 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard and create the kind of memories that last a lifetime. Wander through historic gardens, along winding trails, and within the spacious halls of America’s Largest Home®. Enjoy extraordinary experiences and peace of mind in one spectacular setting: only at Biltmore.

Wednesday, September 22, 2021
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Sep 22 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Included with admission

Our fun-for-all-ages botanical model train displays invite you to experience our grounds in an engaging new way. Located in the Conservatory in the Walled Garden, the displays feature replicas of structures connected with Biltmore and its founder George Vanderbilt. Each beautifully executed piece was handcrafted from such natural elements as leaves, bark, and twigs.

In compliance with state and local mandates related to COVID-19, all guests must enter the Conservatory via the ADA entrance in the back and follow a one-way route.

Biltmore: Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty
Sep 22 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Image result for Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty

Included with admission

A unique-to-Biltmore, large-scale outdoor sculpture will be crafted and installed in Antler Hill Village this spring by Patrick Dougherty. Over the last three decades, this internationally-acclaimed artist has combined his carpentry skills and love of nature to build over 300 of these wondrous works, captivating the hearts and imaginations of viewers worldwide.

Image: Close Ties (2006) Scottish Basketmakers Circle, Dingwall, Scotland. Photo: Fin Macrae
NOTE: This is an example of Patrick Dougherty’s work; the artist will create Biltmore’s unique structure in Antler Hill Village this spring.

Summer at Biltmore
Sep 22 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

See the source image

Summer at Biltmore offers an abundance of opportunities to explore our 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard and create the kind of memories that last a lifetime. Wander through historic gardens, along winding trails, and within the spacious halls of America’s Largest Home®. Enjoy extraordinary experiences and peace of mind in one spectacular setting: only at Biltmore.

Carolina Shine Moonshine Experience
Sep 22 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

“Shine and Dine” on the railway! We cordially invite you to hop on board The Carolina Shine, GSMR’s All-Adult First Class Moonshine Car! We will be proudly serving hand crafted, triple-distilled, craft moonshine. Some of the smoothest tasting moonshine in the Carolinas!

Offered on the Nantahala Gorge excursion, this shine and dine experience begins in a renovated First Class train fleet car, The Carolina Shine. The interior features copper lined walls filled with the history of moonshining in North Carolina. Learn about the proud tradition that the Appalachians established when bootlegging was an acceptable way of life and local home brews were the best in town. Read about Swain County’s very own Major Redmond, the most famous mountain moonshine outlaw of the 19th century.

Once your appetite for knowledge is satisfied, enjoy sample tastings of flavors like Apple Pie, Blackberry, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, and Strawberry moonshine. If the samples are not enough, there will be plenty of Moonshine infused cocktails like Copper Cola or Moonshiner’s Mimosa available for purchase. GSMR is excited to feature multiple craft NC based distilleries to serve our guests only the best! Each jar is handcrafted and authentically infused with real fruit, the way moonshine was meant to be made. Passengers will also enjoy a full service All-Adult First Class ride with an attendant and a specialty boxed lunch. During the month of October. 9am and 2pm departures. 9am will feature the option of a delicious Sausage & Bacon Quiche or Cheesy Ham Hash Brown Casserole. The 2pm departure will be serving the popular BBQ meal.

Diesel $109.00 ($114.00 October) Not Permitted
Steam $119.00 ($126.00 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

How to Purchase

You can purchase your tickets online or call our reservations department at (800) 872-4681. Or, you can purchase your tickets the day of in the Bryson City Depot. No matter how you purchase tickets, they’ll be waiting at will call.

Thursday, September 23, 2021
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Sep 23 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Included with admission

Our fun-for-all-ages botanical model train displays invite you to experience our grounds in an engaging new way. Located in the Conservatory in the Walled Garden, the displays feature replicas of structures connected with Biltmore and its founder George Vanderbilt. Each beautifully executed piece was handcrafted from such natural elements as leaves, bark, and twigs.

In compliance with state and local mandates related to COVID-19, all guests must enter the Conservatory via the ADA entrance in the back and follow a one-way route.

Biltmore: Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty
Sep 23 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Image result for Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty

Included with admission

A unique-to-Biltmore, large-scale outdoor sculpture will be crafted and installed in Antler Hill Village this spring by Patrick Dougherty. Over the last three decades, this internationally-acclaimed artist has combined his carpentry skills and love of nature to build over 300 of these wondrous works, captivating the hearts and imaginations of viewers worldwide.

Image: Close Ties (2006) Scottish Basketmakers Circle, Dingwall, Scotland. Photo: Fin Macrae
NOTE: This is an example of Patrick Dougherty’s work; the artist will create Biltmore’s unique structure in Antler Hill Village this spring.

Summer at Biltmore
Sep 23 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

See the source image

Summer at Biltmore offers an abundance of opportunities to explore our 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard and create the kind of memories that last a lifetime. Wander through historic gardens, along winding trails, and within the spacious halls of America’s Largest Home®. Enjoy extraordinary experiences and peace of mind in one spectacular setting: only at Biltmore.

Carolina Shine Moonshine Experience
Sep 23 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

“Shine and Dine” on the railway! We cordially invite you to hop on board The Carolina Shine, GSMR’s All-Adult First Class Moonshine Car! We will be proudly serving hand crafted, triple-distilled, craft moonshine. Some of the smoothest tasting moonshine in the Carolinas!

Offered on the Nantahala Gorge excursion, this shine and dine experience begins in a renovated First Class train fleet car, The Carolina Shine. The interior features copper lined walls filled with the history of moonshining in North Carolina. Learn about the proud tradition that the Appalachians established when bootlegging was an acceptable way of life and local home brews were the best in town. Read about Swain County’s very own Major Redmond, the most famous mountain moonshine outlaw of the 19th century.

Once your appetite for knowledge is satisfied, enjoy sample tastings of flavors like Apple Pie, Blackberry, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, and Strawberry moonshine. If the samples are not enough, there will be plenty of Moonshine infused cocktails like Copper Cola or Moonshiner’s Mimosa available for purchase. GSMR is excited to feature multiple craft NC based distilleries to serve our guests only the best! Each jar is handcrafted and authentically infused with real fruit, the way moonshine was meant to be made. Passengers will also enjoy a full service All-Adult First Class ride with an attendant and a specialty boxed lunch. During the month of October. 9am and 2pm departures. 9am will feature the option of a delicious Sausage & Bacon Quiche or Cheesy Ham Hash Brown Casserole. The 2pm departure will be serving the popular BBQ meal.

Diesel $109.00 ($114.00 October) Not Permitted
Steam $119.00 ($126.00 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

How to Purchase

You can purchase your tickets online or call our reservations department at (800) 872-4681. Or, you can purchase your tickets the day of in the Bryson City Depot. No matter how you purchase tickets, they’ll be waiting at will call.

Friday, September 24, 2021
Driving Tour with Smith-McDowell House
Sep 24 all-day
Online w/ Western North Carolina Historical Association
The residents of the Smith-McDowell House and grounds were woven in to the fabric of Asheville.

This driving tour begins at the Smith-McDowell House Museum on the campus of A-B Tech and continues through historic sites related to early occupants of the house.

Private Caboose Party
Sep 24 all-day
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

Ride in style on the historic Great Smoky Mountains Railroad aboard your very own restored Caboose. These are great for family reunions, birthday parties, private meetings, corporate field trips or just any time!

Our cabooses accommodate up to 15 people with seating on the main level and in the cupola. (And, remember, babies are people, too!) The cabooses feature heat, private bathrooms, windows that can be opened, and open air vestibules at each end for unobstructed views. Advanced reservations are required and availability of caboose rentals are limited.

A platter of cheese and crackers, and an assortment of 15 bottled Coca-Cola products are included. Plus, the caboose is the only place where you can bring your own food and drink (please, no alcohol) in picnic baskets or coolers.

You can charter the caboose on:

Best value for small groups and private parties up to 15 passengers. Available by phone only. Book now by calling 800-872-4681.

Rail + Trail
Sep 24 all-day
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

Enjoy this trip combining the Great Smoky Mountains Railroads trip with the Waterfall Jeep® tour. You’ll begin your trip in Bryson City, NC, with a 2 hour (approximate) railroad excursion over Fontana Lake and into the Nantahala Gorge. As you travel on the train, watch paddlers challenge the rapids. At the top of the line, disembark from the train and climb aboard Wildwater’s customized Jeep® for a 2-hour (approximate) personal exploration up the mountain, past waterfalls and lakes, up to the Appalachian Trail and back. A delicious deli lunch is included.

Available by phone only. Book now by calling 800-872-4681.

* Children 40 – 80 lbs. are required to sit in the front passenger seat with the airbag disengaged using a child booster seat. Children 80 lbs. or greater will sit in the back using a lap seat belt. If there is more than one child in the 40 – 80 lb. range, the second child will sit in the back using a lap belt.

Victoria: The Forgotten Town Walking Tour
Sep 24 all-day
Online w/ Western North Carolina Historical Association
Contained by its larger growing neighbor (Asheville), the French Broad and Swannanoa rivers, and the Southern Railway line, the Town of Victoria existed from 1887 until 1905, when it was absorbed into Asheville. The community—which included the Smith-McDowell House and Fernihurst mansion—originally incorporated into a town to prevent unwanted development (particularly from the Vanderbilts).
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Sep 24 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Included with admission

Our fun-for-all-ages botanical model train displays invite you to experience our grounds in an engaging new way. Located in the Conservatory in the Walled Garden, the displays feature replicas of structures connected with Biltmore and its founder George Vanderbilt. Each beautifully executed piece was handcrafted from such natural elements as leaves, bark, and twigs.

In compliance with state and local mandates related to COVID-19, all guests must enter the Conservatory via the ADA entrance in the back and follow a one-way route.

Biltmore: Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty
Sep 24 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Image result for Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty

Included with admission

A unique-to-Biltmore, large-scale outdoor sculpture will be crafted and installed in Antler Hill Village this spring by Patrick Dougherty. Over the last three decades, this internationally-acclaimed artist has combined his carpentry skills and love of nature to build over 300 of these wondrous works, captivating the hearts and imaginations of viewers worldwide.

Image: Close Ties (2006) Scottish Basketmakers Circle, Dingwall, Scotland. Photo: Fin Macrae
NOTE: This is an example of Patrick Dougherty’s work; the artist will create Biltmore’s unique structure in Antler Hill Village this spring.

Summer at Biltmore
Sep 24 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

See the source image

Summer at Biltmore offers an abundance of opportunities to explore our 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard and create the kind of memories that last a lifetime. Wander through historic gardens, along winding trails, and within the spacious halls of America’s Largest Home®. Enjoy extraordinary experiences and peace of mind in one spectacular setting: only at Biltmore.

Carolina Shine Moonshine Experience
Sep 24 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

“Shine and Dine” on the railway! We cordially invite you to hop on board The Carolina Shine, GSMR’s All-Adult First Class Moonshine Car! We will be proudly serving hand crafted, triple-distilled, craft moonshine. Some of the smoothest tasting moonshine in the Carolinas!

Offered on the Nantahala Gorge excursion, this shine and dine experience begins in a renovated First Class train fleet car, The Carolina Shine. The interior features copper lined walls filled with the history of moonshining in North Carolina. Learn about the proud tradition that the Appalachians established when bootlegging was an acceptable way of life and local home brews were the best in town. Read about Swain County’s very own Major Redmond, the most famous mountain moonshine outlaw of the 19th century.

Once your appetite for knowledge is satisfied, enjoy sample tastings of flavors like Apple Pie, Blackberry, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, and Strawberry moonshine. If the samples are not enough, there will be plenty of Moonshine infused cocktails like Copper Cola or Moonshiner’s Mimosa available for purchase. GSMR is excited to feature multiple craft NC based distilleries to serve our guests only the best! Each jar is handcrafted and authentically infused with real fruit, the way moonshine was meant to be made. Passengers will also enjoy a full service All-Adult First Class ride with an attendant and a specialty boxed lunch. During the month of October. 9am and 2pm departures. 9am will feature the option of a delicious Sausage & Bacon Quiche or Cheesy Ham Hash Brown Casserole. The 2pm departure will be serving the popular BBQ meal.

Diesel $109.00 ($114.00 October) Not Permitted
Steam $119.00 ($126.00 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

How to Purchase

You can purchase your tickets online or call our reservations department at (800) 872-4681. Or, you can purchase your tickets the day of in the Bryson City Depot. No matter how you purchase tickets, they’ll be waiting at will call.

Saturday, September 25, 2021
Driving Tour with Smith-McDowell House
Sep 25 all-day
Online w/ Western North Carolina Historical Association
The residents of the Smith-McDowell House and grounds were woven in to the fabric of Asheville.

This driving tour begins at the Smith-McDowell House Museum on the campus of A-B Tech and continues through historic sites related to early occupants of the house.

Private Caboose Party
Sep 25 all-day
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

Ride in style on the historic Great Smoky Mountains Railroad aboard your very own restored Caboose. These are great for family reunions, birthday parties, private meetings, corporate field trips or just any time!

Our cabooses accommodate up to 15 people with seating on the main level and in the cupola. (And, remember, babies are people, too!) The cabooses feature heat, private bathrooms, windows that can be opened, and open air vestibules at each end for unobstructed views. Advanced reservations are required and availability of caboose rentals are limited.

A platter of cheese and crackers, and an assortment of 15 bottled Coca-Cola products are included. Plus, the caboose is the only place where you can bring your own food and drink (please, no alcohol) in picnic baskets or coolers.

You can charter the caboose on:

Best value for small groups and private parties up to 15 passengers. Available by phone only. Book now by calling 800-872-4681.

Rail + Trail
Sep 25 all-day
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

Enjoy this trip combining the Great Smoky Mountains Railroads trip with the Waterfall Jeep® tour. You’ll begin your trip in Bryson City, NC, with a 2 hour (approximate) railroad excursion over Fontana Lake and into the Nantahala Gorge. As you travel on the train, watch paddlers challenge the rapids. At the top of the line, disembark from the train and climb aboard Wildwater’s customized Jeep® for a 2-hour (approximate) personal exploration up the mountain, past waterfalls and lakes, up to the Appalachian Trail and back. A delicious deli lunch is included.

Available by phone only. Book now by calling 800-872-4681.

* Children 40 – 80 lbs. are required to sit in the front passenger seat with the airbag disengaged using a child booster seat. Children 80 lbs. or greater will sit in the back using a lap seat belt. If there is more than one child in the 40 – 80 lb. range, the second child will sit in the back using a lap belt.

Victoria: The Forgotten Town Walking Tour
Sep 25 all-day
Online w/ Western North Carolina Historical Association
Contained by its larger growing neighbor (Asheville), the French Broad and Swannanoa rivers, and the Southern Railway line, the Town of Victoria existed from 1887 until 1905, when it was absorbed into Asheville. The community—which included the Smith-McDowell House and Fernihurst mansion—originally incorporated into a town to prevent unwanted development (particularly from the Vanderbilts).
Biltmore Gardens Railway
Sep 25 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Included with admission

Our fun-for-all-ages botanical model train displays invite you to experience our grounds in an engaging new way. Located in the Conservatory in the Walled Garden, the displays feature replicas of structures connected with Biltmore and its founder George Vanderbilt. Each beautifully executed piece was handcrafted from such natural elements as leaves, bark, and twigs.

In compliance with state and local mandates related to COVID-19, all guests must enter the Conservatory via the ADA entrance in the back and follow a one-way route.

Biltmore: Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty
Sep 25 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

Image result for Stickwork by Patrick Dougherty

Included with admission

A unique-to-Biltmore, large-scale outdoor sculpture will be crafted and installed in Antler Hill Village this spring by Patrick Dougherty. Over the last three decades, this internationally-acclaimed artist has combined his carpentry skills and love of nature to build over 300 of these wondrous works, captivating the hearts and imaginations of viewers worldwide.

Image: Close Ties (2006) Scottish Basketmakers Circle, Dingwall, Scotland. Photo: Fin Macrae
NOTE: This is an example of Patrick Dougherty’s work; the artist will create Biltmore’s unique structure in Antler Hill Village this spring.

Summer at Biltmore
Sep 25 @ 9:30 am – 6:00 pm
Biltmore

See the source image

Summer at Biltmore offers an abundance of opportunities to explore our 8,000-acre Blue Ridge Mountain backyard and create the kind of memories that last a lifetime. Wander through historic gardens, along winding trails, and within the spacious halls of America’s Largest Home®. Enjoy extraordinary experiences and peace of mind in one spectacular setting: only at Biltmore.

Carolina Shine Moonshine Experience
Sep 25 @ 10:30 am – 3:00 pm
Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

“Shine and Dine” on the railway! We cordially invite you to hop on board The Carolina Shine, GSMR’s All-Adult First Class Moonshine Car! We will be proudly serving hand crafted, triple-distilled, craft moonshine. Some of the smoothest tasting moonshine in the Carolinas!

Offered on the Nantahala Gorge excursion, this shine and dine experience begins in a renovated First Class train fleet car, The Carolina Shine. The interior features copper lined walls filled with the history of moonshining in North Carolina. Learn about the proud tradition that the Appalachians established when bootlegging was an acceptable way of life and local home brews were the best in town. Read about Swain County’s very own Major Redmond, the most famous mountain moonshine outlaw of the 19th century.

Once your appetite for knowledge is satisfied, enjoy sample tastings of flavors like Apple Pie, Blackberry, Blueberry, Cherry, Peach, and Strawberry moonshine. If the samples are not enough, there will be plenty of Moonshine infused cocktails like Copper Cola or Moonshiner’s Mimosa available for purchase. GSMR is excited to feature multiple craft NC based distilleries to serve our guests only the best! Each jar is handcrafted and authentically infused with real fruit, the way moonshine was meant to be made. Passengers will also enjoy a full service All-Adult First Class ride with an attendant and a specialty boxed lunch. During the month of October. 9am and 2pm departures. 9am will feature the option of a delicious Sausage & Bacon Quiche or Cheesy Ham Hash Brown Casserole. The 2pm departure will be serving the popular BBQ meal.

Diesel $109.00 ($114.00 October) Not Permitted
Steam $119.00 ($126.00 October) Not Permitted
Locomotive Adult (21+ Only) Under 21

How to Purchase

You can purchase your tickets online or call our reservations department at (800) 872-4681. Or, you can purchase your tickets the day of in the Bryson City Depot. No matter how you purchase tickets, they’ll be waiting at will call.

Guided Trail Walk
Sep 25 @ 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
NC Arboretum

Hit the trails and learn more about the Arboretum’s botanically diverse forest with the return of guided trail walks in 2021! In response to COVID-19, new safety measures have been put in place to protect our guests, members, volunteers and staff: Walks will be limited to 10 people, including the guide, and all participants will be required to wear face coverings for the duration of the walk.

This free hiking program is led by trained volunteer guides who take small groups of participants along woodland trails and through a variety of forest types. Depending on the season, topics of discussion may include wildflowers, plant and tree identification, natural history and more.

Guided trail walks depart from the Baker Exhibit Center Lobby every Tuesday and Saturday at 1 p.m. through the month of October. Walks last 1.5- 2.5 hours and are approximately one to two miles in length, and as such are recommended for guests 14 years or older. Walks are held rain or shine, so all participants should dress appropriately for the weather.

Register In Advance

Space is limited and advance registration is encouraged. Pre-registered participants must check in at the Baker Information Desk no later than 10 minutes before the scheduled program to keep their spot. Unclaimed spots will be offered to other guests.

Guests may sign up for trail walks in the following ways:

  • Pre-register online
  • Sign up in-person at the Baker Information Desk.
Public Tour at Asheville Art Museum: Discovering Art
Sep 25 @ 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Asheville Art Museum

Childe Hassam, The Old Elm, 1916, oil on canvas, 29 × 37 inches. Gift of Mrs. Charles M. Butler, 1991.14.1.21.

Sunday, September 26, 2021
Driving Tour with Smith-McDowell House
Sep 26 all-day
Online w/ Western North Carolina Historical Association
The residents of the Smith-McDowell House and grounds were woven in to the fabric of Asheville.

This driving tour begins at the Smith-McDowell House Museum on the campus of A-B Tech and continues through historic sites related to early occupants of the house.