Asheville is home to breathtaking outdoor backdrops and experiences. From yoga to hiking the Blue Ridge Parkway, our outdoor events calendar has it all.

Saturday, July 13, 2024
Foundational AcroYoga Series
Jul 13 – Jul 29 all-day
Weaving Rainbows

Hello Asheville Fam! Thank you for the invite to teach Acro in our community. Previously, I spent five years teaching multiple weekly classes in Knoxville, TN. Now that I’m officially in AVL, Maan and I are excited to offer two class series in July: Foundational AcroYoga and An introduction to Thai Massage. Mark your calendars and register soon as space is limited!

Details:
Mondays in July 5:30 -7pm
$111 For Series
$33 Drop-in
Downtown at Weaving Rainbows (62 Wall St)

Join Rebekah Joy and Maan for a five-week AcroYoga series! Come explore foundational and intermediate postures, and therapeutic inversions. Offering creative exercises, individual diagnostics, and functional strength training to support you on your Acro journey. All levels welcome. Beginner friendly!

To Register:
Venmo @rebekah-luhrs

Limited Space
Register in advance

All attendees get 50% off if they want to join the Thai Massage Series! See More info.

More info at:
https://www.rebekahluhrs.com/register

Rebekah Joy is a Knoxville based AcroYoga instructor. She began teaching in 2013 while living in New Zealand. In 2017 she completed her AcroYoga Teacher Training though AY International in Mexico.

Grant Center Swimming Pool
Jul 13 all-day
Grant Center Pool

Swimming Pools

Asheville Parks & Recreation’s public pools provide safe and affordable outdoor summer fun for all ages. For info about pool schedules, please call 828-348-4770 or visit ashevillecitypools.com.

Malvern Hills Park’s 90 year-old outdoor pool will not open this summer. While we were able to keep the facility operational through last summer, the pool can no longer be repaired to safely meet the needs of our community. For more, read this article.

Admission

  • Individual – $3 per session
  • Individual Season Pass – $100
  • Family Season Pass – $150 (up to four individuals)

Locations

Events

  • Asheville Parks & Recreation hosts hundreds of free and low-cost activities, programs, and events each month. Check out the latest program guide.
  • Pools will open Saturday, May 25!

    Dates of Operation:
    Grant Center Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Sunday, August 11th
    Recreation Park Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Monday, September 2nd, weekends only from
    August 12th through September 2nd

    Pools open weekends only until June 10th, with the exception of Monday, May 27!

    Hours of Operation June 10 through August 11:
    Monday through Friday – 12:00pm-6:00pm
    Saturday – 11:00am-6:00pm
    Sunday – 1:00pm-6:00pm

    Cost is $3 per person per day

Mile High Swinging Bridge
Jul 13 all-day
Grandfather Mountain

One of the top highlights and memories of visits to Grandfather Mountain nature park is walking across the famous Mile High Swinging Bridge. Since 1952, visitors have “oohed” and “aahed” at the bridge’s 360-degree panoramic views. America’s highest suspension footbridge gives easy access to the spectacular views atop Grandfather Mountain’s Linville Peak, elevation 5,305 feet.

The 228-foot suspension bridge spans an 80-foot chasm at more than one mile in elevation (hence the name!). To reach the Mile High Swinging Bridge, drive the two-mile, winding scenic road up the mountain to the summit parking area by the Top Shop. Climb 50 stairs adjacent to the parking area or inside the Top Shop to reach the short pathway to the bridge. Also, an elevator in the Top Shop takes you to the third floor for a level walk to the bridge.

Top Shop

Located adjacent to the Bridge, the Top Shop features a gift shop, snacks, restrooms, elevator and second-floor exhibition area. Also get the latest park information and trail maps. Read more.

Accessibility

Inside the Top Shop, an elevator makes the Mile High Swinging Bridge accessible to people with mobility challenges, including those in wheelchairs. From the Top Shop, there is a paved 50-yard path to the bridge. Read more about our accessibility.

Tickets & Hours

Walking across the Mile High Swinging Bridge is included in your Grandfather Mountain admission ticket that includes many other things to do in our nature park. Buy tickets online and book a reservation time to enter the park. You do not need a separate reservation for the bridge. It’s open, weather permitting, every day of the year except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. See hours.

More to Explore

Before or after visiting the Mile High Swinging Bridge, allow time to enjoy other parts of the mountain: wildlife habitats, Wilson Center for Nature Discovery, restaurant, hiking trails, roadside overlooks, picnic areas and more. See more Things to Do.

Nearby Hiking Trails

Trailheads to many of the Grandfather Mountain hiking trails are located near the Swinging Bridge. In fact, the 0.4 mile Bridge Trail takes you beneath the bridge, starting from the Black Rock parking area just below the summit. For details on our nearby trails, go to our Hiking Guide.

Bridge Tips & Tidbits

  • Does it really swing? Very little — unlike the original one. Today’s bridge is made of steel and reinforced with cables and springs. It has railings on the sides to ensure safety.
  • We suggest you wear rubber-soled shoes and walk with care when crossing the rocks on the far side of the bridge.
  • If heights give you pause, you can still enjoy Blue Ridge Mountain views from the ground before you reach the bridge and even from the parking area.
  • Due to periodic extreme weather conditions at the bridge, it closes when there is area lightning, high wind or icy conditions.
  • The official U.S. Weather Service Reporting Station atop the Mile High Swinging Bridge has provided daily weather observations since 1955. The temperature is usually 10 to 20 degrees cooler than in the flatlands you see below. It’s also one of the windiest locations in North Carolina, with a 124-mph record set in winter 2019. Learn more about our weather.
  • Pets are allowed on the bridge if well behaved and on a leash.
  • Photographs and videos to remember your visit are encouraged. Be mindful of sharp drop-offs along the Linville Peak ridge. Drones are not allowed. See our photography policies.
  • The Singing Bridge? When the wind blows, the Mile High Swinging Bridge “sings” in the same way as a harmonica.
  • In April through October, join Grandfather’s expert naturalists by the Bridge for Interpretive Talks about the our unique weather, climate, flora and fauna. Read more.
  • Need driving directions? The address for Grandfather Mountain’s entrance gate is 2050 Blowing Rock Highway, Linville, NC 28646 (click link for Google Maps). There are no shuttles, so you must have your own vehicle to explore our nature park. No RVs longer than 28 feet in length or hinged vehicles are allowed through the Entrance Gate. See detailed directions.
  • To see much more info, see our Plan Your Visit section.

Mile High Swinging Bridge History

Former North Carolina Tourism Director Charles J. Parker coined the name “Mile High Swinging Bridge” at the Bridge’s dedication in 1952. The term “mile high” refers to the structure’s elevation above sea level (5,280 feet). The term “swinging” refers to the fact that suspension bridges are free to sway.

The original 1952 bridge was designed by Charles Hartmann Jr. of Greensboro, N.C. It was fabricated in Greensboro and then reassembled on top of the Mountain. Erecting the bridge took three weeks, a process slowed by inclement weather created by a hurricane off the North Carolina coast. Cost was $15,000. It was dedicated on Sept. 2, 1952 by North Carolina Gov. William B. Umstead.

The bridge was rebuilt in 1999 using the original towers. The cables, floor boards and side rails were all replaced using galvanized steel. One of the main advantages of the modern building materials is that they do not have to be painted. Now, Grandfather Mountain employees will not have to hang out over the gorge to paint the span. It was redesigned by Sutton, Kennerly & Associates Engineering of Asheville, N.C., and rebuilt by Taylor & Murphy Construction Company of Asheville. The cost of rebuilding was $300,000.

PARI Summer STEM and Space Exploration Camps
Jul 13 – Aug 1 all-day
Pisgah Astronomical Research Institute

Unleash your curiosity of the unknown when you retreat to a dark sky oasis where the stars are innumerable
and beckon overhead. Let the magnificence of space overwhelm you as you discover the mysteries that still
confound scientists, it just might drive you to become tomorrow’s astronauts, physicists, and engineers.
Come learn how different telescopes work and use them and real data to explore space just like professional
scientists do. PARI is a unique site, rich in space science history, and is located in the Blue Ridge Mountains
of North Carolina, where an abundance of adventures awaits. From Space and Science to tubing, waterfall
swimming and roller skating, there are fun, refreshing activities for everyone.
Your Next Adventure Awaits!
When you look up at night and see a field of twinkling lights or the bright crescent of the Moon, what is it
you think of? Maybe you wonder what makes the stars burn and how they came to be, or what planets might
orbit them and the worlds they hold. Perhaps you see patterns that tell a story or point the way to a place
beyond the horizon. Or, do they instill in you a sense of adventure and desire to explore?
Space is a frontier that sparks imagination and curiosity to discover and understand. It invokes the same
spirit that drove ancient peoples to sail into the unknown and pioneers to set out across continents. To reach
into space requires tenacity and grit, bringing together people from diverse backgrounds who’ve studied,
experimented, and pushed humanity’s abilities forward again and again.
The summer of 2024 will begin PARI’s twenty- third summer camp season. It brings camp programs where
campers explore the ways that researchers delve the depths of our universe to make new discoveries, and the
challenges that humans face when leaving the Earth to explore the Moon, Mars, and beyond.
It is also the third summer of our new partnership with Clemson University. This collaboration expands our
ability to inspire with new topics and resources and will reach even more campers who will become the next
generation of scientists and explorers.
Have you got what it takes to conquer STEM and Space?
PARI Summer Camps
Mission Control: Martian Frontier
-Do you have what it takes to plan a mission to another planet?
Gain confidence, learn space science, and strive to make it to a new world in this combination role-play—academic
camp. The wide variety of topics makes this camp a good fit for a range of interests. You’ll tackle challenges in
space craft and habitat design, astronaut health and well-being, and capturing public interest while swaying others
to support your plan.
This camp is designed for middle and high school aged campers.
Above & Beyond
-Models the research process followed by professionals in space science!
Our signature and most academically intensive camp explores the universe through astronomy, physics, and
astrobiology. Use real research-grade instruments and data to investigate objects like super-nova remnants and
distant star clusters, or map the Milky Way. One small step as a space explorer, one giant step in launching your
career in space.
This camp is designed for high school aged campers.
3D Planets – PARI Edition
Lunar and Martian Geography, 3D Modeling & Printing
What is the surface of other planets like? How do we find out and turn that information into a three dimensional
model? Can we accurately recreate other places in the solar system with a 3D printer in a way that anyone can
see and touch and gain an understanding of places beyond Earth? Campers will investigate these questions and
delve into the processes of making science accessible to all. The PARI edition will feature a field trip to a unique
mountain location to experience the beauty of the Land of Waterfalls.
This camp is available in versions for either middle school or high school aged campers.
Clemson & PARI Summer Camps
3D Planets – Clemson Edition
Lunar and Martian Geography, 3D Modeling & Printing
What is the surface of other planets like? How do we find out and turn that information into a three dimensional
model? Can we accurately recreate other places in the solar system with a 3D printer in a way that anyone can
see and touch and gain an understanding of places beyond Earth? Campers will investigate these questions and
delve into the processes of making science accessible to all.
The Clemson Edition of this camp will feature a guest speaker from Clemson University who will engage campers
with the science and research going on there. Campers will also hike to a unique mountain location in the Land of
Waterfalls.
This camp is designed for middle school aged campers.
Advanced 3D Planets – Clemson Edition
Lunar and Martian Geography, 3D Modeling & Printing
What is the surface of other planets like? How do we find out and turn that information into a three dimensional
model? Can we accurately recreate other places in the solar system with a 3D printer in a way that anyone can
see and touch and gain an understanding of places beyond Earth? Campers will investigate these questions and
delve into the processes of making science accessible to all.
The advanced version of this camp is designed for high school aged campers and will go deeper into the math
behind how the data is modeled in the computer. We will also learn to represent 3D models with code.
The Clemson Edition of this camp will feature a field trip to Clemson University where students experience the
science and research going on there.
This camp is designed for high school aged campers.
3D Planets – Clemson Edition
6/16/2024 3 PM – 6/21/2024 10 AM
Ages 11 – 15
Advanced 3D Planets – Clemson Edition
6/23/2024 3 PM – 6/28/2024 10 AM
Ages 14 – 17 years
3D Planets – PARI Edition
6/30/2024 3 PM – 7/5/2024 10 AM
Ages 11 – 15
Above & Beyond
7/7/2024 3 PM – 7/18/2024 10 AM
Grades 9th – 12th
Martian Frontier
7/21/2024 3 PM – 8/1/2024 10 AM
Grades 7th – 12th
Empowering today’s campers to become tomorrow’s leaders in space and science discovery

Raft + Rail A Fully Guided Experience
Jul 13 all-day
The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

The original Raft & Rail© since 1988: enjoy the two best adventures in the region in one day, great for families. Southern Living Magazine calls this “an ideal adventure for families, first-timers, young or old.” This full-day guided adventure starts with a Wildwater staff member greeting you at the train depot, followed by a scenic train trip, deli lunch with all the fixings, and a Nantahala River whitewater trip with a guide in every boat. Hot showers and a photo show follow immediately after your 8-mile Nantahala River trip. All transportation is included to and from the Bryson City Train Depot. Available April–October with the morning departure of the Nantahala Gorge Excursion departing Bryson City, NC. Train seating in Open Air Gondola. 2024 bookings starting soon!

Ticket fares subject to 7% Historic Preservation Fee and 7% North Carolina sales tax. Schedules, fares, motive power, equipment, seat selection, and meals are subject to change without notice. We guarantee the class of service you select. You will be notified if a change in schedule or motive power affects your reservation. Payment in full at booking by major credit card is required to finalize a reservation. You may cancel your reservation in full or in part and receive a refund less a $14.00 fee per adult ticket and $7.00 fee per child ticket as late as 5 days before departure, except The Polar Express Train Ride; The Polar Express Train Ride is as late as 60 days before departure. Within 5 days of the departure, or 60 days in the case of the Polar Express Train Ride, the reservation becomes nonrefundable. You may reschedule any time prior to your originally scheduled departure with a $7.00 fee per ticket for another date within the same calendar year. You may not reschedule a reservation after the scheduled departure.

Recreation Park Swimming Pool
Jul 13 all-day
Recreation Park

Swimming Pools

Asheville Parks & Recreation’s public pools provide safe and affordable outdoor summer fun for all ages. For info about pool schedules, please call 828-348-4770 or visit ashevillecitypools.com.

Malvern Hills Park’s 90 year-old outdoor pool will not open this summer. While we were able to keep the facility operational through last summer, the pool can no longer be repaired to safely meet the needs of our community. For more, read this article.

Admission

  • Individual – $3 per session
  • Individual Season Pass – $100
  • Family Season Pass – $150 (up to four individuals)

Locations

Events

  • Asheville Parks & Recreation hosts hundreds of free and low-cost activities, programs, and events each month. Check out the latest program guide.
  • Pools will open Saturday, May 25!

    Dates of Operation:
    Grant Center Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Sunday, August 11th
    Recreation Park Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Monday, September 2nd, weekends only from
    August 12th through September 2nd

    Pools open weekends only until June 10th, with the exception of Monday, May 27!

    Hours of Operation June 10 through August 11:
    Monday through Friday – 12:00pm-6:00pm
    Saturday – 11:00am-6:00pm
    Sunday – 1:00pm-6:00pm

    Cost is $3 per person per day

Rise & Yoga on the Roof at The Radical
Jul 13 – Aug 31 all-day
The Radical Hotel

Rise & Yoga with The Radical Saturday at 9am. Guests can meet on The Roof for a complimentary 60-minute yoga flow brought to us by LOVE SHINE PLAY.

NC Arboretum Hiking Trails
Jul 13 @ 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
NC Arboretum

Located within the wildly-popular and botanically beautiful Southern Appalachian Mountains, The North Carolina Arboretum offers more than 10 miles of hiking trails that connect to many other area attractions such as Lake Powhatan, the Pisgah National Forest and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Visitors of all ages and abilities can enjoy their hiking experience at the Arboretum as trail options include easy, moderate, and difficult challenge levels. All trails are dog-friendly and visitors are asked to adhere to the proper waste disposing procedures for pets.

Part of a running group that would like to use the Arboretum as a starting point or parking location? Please review our Running Group Guidance and email [email protected] with any questions.

Outdoor Bonsai Exhibition Garden
Jul 13 @ 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
NC Arboretum

What is Bonsai?

Bonsai is a challenging and rewarding horticultural activity, in which ordinary plants are grown in an extraordinary way. Through rigorously applied cultivation techniques, trees, shrubs, vines and even herbaceous plants are kept in a miniaturized state, developed into artistic shapes and then displayed in special containers.

What makes the Arboretum’s bonsai endeavor unique among all other public collections in the United States? Regional Interpretation. Visitors will find the Arboretum’s bonsai collection of more than 100 specimens carefully cultivated with a Southern Appalachian accent. The collection draws inspiration from the traditional roots of bonsai, but takes the form of a contemporary, Southern Appalachian influenced American garden. Plantings in the landscape include species and cultivars of American, European and Asian origin.

 

The Bonsai Exhibition Garden

Established in October 2005, The North Carolina Arboretum’s Bonsai Exhibition Garden is a world renowned garden that displays up to 50 bonsai specimens at a time. Represented are traditional Asian bonsai subjects such as Japanese maple and Chinese elm, tropical plants such as willow-leaf fig and bougainvillea, and American species such as bald cypress and limber pine. Of particular importance are the plants native to the Blue Ridge region, such as American hornbeam and eastern white pine, which enable the Arboretum to bring the thousand-year tradition of bonsai home to the mountains of Western North Carolina. Interpretive signage throughout the garden conveys information about the art and history of bonsai, and the Arboretum’s own creative approach to it.

 

Outdoor Bonsai Exhibition Garden

  • Bonsai on Display Mid May – November; 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily
  • Garden Open Year Round
  • Parking Fees
    • Personal/Standard Vehicle (up to 20′ long): $20
    • Large vehicles (21′-29′ long): $60
    • Busses and Oversize Vehicles (30′ long+): $125
    • Members: Free

    Apart from the parking fee, there is no other admission charge to enter the Arboretum or our facilities, except in the case of advertised ticketed events.

Summer Splash Water Days
Jul 13 @ 9:00 am – 8:30 pm
Pack Square Park

Splasheville

Splasheville is located in Pack Square Park on 80 Court Plaza. The free splash pad’s regular daily hours are 9.m-8:30pm, but may close for special events or during inclement weather. Check the calendar for scheduled closures.

Downtown Asheville Treasure Hunt – Walking Team Scavenger Hunt!
Jul 13 @ 5:00 pm
Dssolvr

Guests will meet at Dssolvr Asheville (63 N. Lexington Ave, Asheville, NC 28801) and then depart with their treasure map on a walking team scavenger hunt where they will use their minds and feet to follow clues, solve puzzles, and crack codes to find and unlock the treasure chest for a grand prize!

The hunt involves walking a distance of up to 2.0 miles in total and will take place rain or shine, so long as the weather does not become dangerous. The hunt typically takes about 60 minutes to complete.

Children under 10 years old are welcome to participate for free with the purchase of an Adult ticket.

The Moppets: The Winter’s Tale
Jul 13 @ 5:00 pm – 6:30 pm
Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre
The Moppets present Shakespeare’s “The Winter’s Tale”
A jealous king, an exiled princess, a living statue… and a whole bunch of bears?!? Don’t miss Shakespeare’s tragically comedic and comically tragic “The Winter’s Tale” in its debut on the Moppets stage!
Tuxedo Junction at Fletcher Park
Jul 13 @ 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Bill Moore Community Park

fletcher parks concerts

AUG17

July 13th & August 17th, 2024


The annual Summer Concert Series at Fletcher Parks offers free, live music. Organized by the Fletcher Parks & Recreation.

Shindig on the Green
Jul 13 @ 7:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Pack Square Park

Locals and visitors alike come together at downtown’s Pack Square Park “along about sundown,” or at 7:00 pm for those who wear a watch, and continues until 10:00 pm. Concessions are available!

2024 Dates
Shindig on the Green
July 6, 13, 20, 27
August 10, 17, 24

The stage show takes place on the Bascom Lamar Lunsford stage, named for the founder of the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival. Since the outdoor event’s inception in 1967, hundreds of thousands of individuals from across the region and throughout the world have shared and enjoyed the rich traditional music and dance heritage of the Southern Appalachian Mountains in this outdoor setting.

Shindig on the Green remains a free event due in part to net proceeds from ticket sales to the nation’s longest continually running festival, the granddaddy of all festivals, the Mountain Dance and Folk Festival.

Shakespeare’s Wars of the Roses Henry IV Parts 1 + 2
Jul 13 @ 7:30 pm
Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre

The Montford Park Players is pleased to announce auditions for its 52nd  Season: 

Muse of Fire: Shakespeare’s Wars of the Roses

Jason Williams, Artistic Director

5/10/2024 5/24/2024   Edward III, directed by Mandy Bean
5/31/2024 6/23/2024   Richard II, directed by Jason Williams
6/28/2024 7/21/2024   Henry IV Parts 1 & 2, directed by Dr. George Brown, Callista Brown and Elizabeth DeVault
7/26/2024 8/25/2024   Henry V, directed by David Doersch
8/30/2024 9/22/2024  Henry VI Parts 1, 2 & 3, directed by Glenna Grant, Ariel Robinson and Adam Kampouris
9/27/2024 10/27/2024 Richard III, directed by Kristi DeVille

Conveniently located in the heart of the Historic Montford District of Asheville, North Carolina, the Outdoor Hazel Robinson Amphitheatre is easy to get to and accessible from I-240 and I-26. And, it’s just a short drive down Montford Avenue from downtown.

Sunday, July 14, 2024
DIY River + Road Cleanups
Jul 14 all-day
Asheville Area

Whenever you want!

 

Supplies available at

2 Sulphur Springs Road

If you need to request supplies for the same or next day, please call 828-254-1776.

Organizing a litter cleanup with your friends, neighbors, co-workers, or other community members is easier than you may think! Asheville GreenWorks provides cleanup supplies and safety information, and will coordinate trash pick up as needed. Available supplies include safety vests, gloves, trash grabbers, trash bags, and SHARPs containers (upon request).

Review the attached guides for instructions and safety information.

Need to know

Please review the attached documents and contact [email protected] with any questions. Your supplies will be available for pickup on the date you’ve requested at Asheville GreenWorks’ office at 2 Sulphur Springs Road, Asheville, NC 28806.

All cleanups should be reported using the online form and supplies should be returned after your cleanup.

Grant Center Swimming Pool
Jul 14 all-day
Grant Center Pool

Swimming Pools

Asheville Parks & Recreation’s public pools provide safe and affordable outdoor summer fun for all ages. For info about pool schedules, please call 828-348-4770 or visit ashevillecitypools.com.

Malvern Hills Park’s 90 year-old outdoor pool will not open this summer. While we were able to keep the facility operational through last summer, the pool can no longer be repaired to safely meet the needs of our community. For more, read this article.

Admission

  • Individual – $3 per session
  • Individual Season Pass – $100
  • Family Season Pass – $150 (up to four individuals)

Locations

Events

  • Asheville Parks & Recreation hosts hundreds of free and low-cost activities, programs, and events each month. Check out the latest program guide.
  • Pools will open Saturday, May 25!

    Dates of Operation:
    Grant Center Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Sunday, August 11th
    Recreation Park Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Monday, September 2nd, weekends only from
    August 12th through September 2nd

    Pools open weekends only until June 10th, with the exception of Monday, May 27!

    Hours of Operation June 10 through August 11:
    Monday through Friday – 12:00pm-6:00pm
    Saturday – 11:00am-6:00pm
    Sunday – 1:00pm-6:00pm

    Cost is $3 per person per day

Mile High Swinging Bridge
Jul 14 all-day
Grandfather Mountain

One of the top highlights and memories of visits to Grandfather Mountain nature park is walking across the famous Mile High Swinging Bridge. Since 1952, visitors have “oohed” and “aahed” at the bridge’s 360-degree panoramic views. America’s highest suspension footbridge gives easy access to the spectacular views atop Grandfather Mountain’s Linville Peak, elevation 5,305 feet.

The 228-foot suspension bridge spans an 80-foot chasm at more than one mile in elevation (hence the name!). To reach the Mile High Swinging Bridge, drive the two-mile, winding scenic road up the mountain to the summit parking area by the Top Shop. Climb 50 stairs adjacent to the parking area or inside the Top Shop to reach the short pathway to the bridge. Also, an elevator in the Top Shop takes you to the third floor for a level walk to the bridge.

Top Shop

Located adjacent to the Bridge, the Top Shop features a gift shop, snacks, restrooms, elevator and second-floor exhibition area. Also get the latest park information and trail maps. Read more.

Accessibility

Inside the Top Shop, an elevator makes the Mile High Swinging Bridge accessible to people with mobility challenges, including those in wheelchairs. From the Top Shop, there is a paved 50-yard path to the bridge. Read more about our accessibility.

Tickets & Hours

Walking across the Mile High Swinging Bridge is included in your Grandfather Mountain admission ticket that includes many other things to do in our nature park. Buy tickets online and book a reservation time to enter the park. You do not need a separate reservation for the bridge. It’s open, weather permitting, every day of the year except Thanksgiving and Christmas Day. See hours.

More to Explore

Before or after visiting the Mile High Swinging Bridge, allow time to enjoy other parts of the mountain: wildlife habitats, Wilson Center for Nature Discovery, restaurant, hiking trails, roadside overlooks, picnic areas and more. See more Things to Do.

Nearby Hiking Trails

Trailheads to many of the Grandfather Mountain hiking trails are located near the Swinging Bridge. In fact, the 0.4 mile Bridge Trail takes you beneath the bridge, starting from the Black Rock parking area just below the summit. For details on our nearby trails, go to our Hiking Guide.

Bridge Tips & Tidbits

  • Does it really swing? Very little — unlike the original one. Today’s bridge is made of steel and reinforced with cables and springs. It has railings on the sides to ensure safety.
  • We suggest you wear rubber-soled shoes and walk with care when crossing the rocks on the far side of the bridge.
  • If heights give you pause, you can still enjoy Blue Ridge Mountain views from the ground before you reach the bridge and even from the parking area.
  • Due to periodic extreme weather conditions at the bridge, it closes when there is area lightning, high wind or icy conditions.
  • The official U.S. Weather Service Reporting Station atop the Mile High Swinging Bridge has provided daily weather observations since 1955. The temperature is usually 10 to 20 degrees cooler than in the flatlands you see below. It’s also one of the windiest locations in North Carolina, with a 124-mph record set in winter 2019. Learn more about our weather.
  • Pets are allowed on the bridge if well behaved and on a leash.
  • Photographs and videos to remember your visit are encouraged. Be mindful of sharp drop-offs along the Linville Peak ridge. Drones are not allowed. See our photography policies.
  • The Singing Bridge? When the wind blows, the Mile High Swinging Bridge “sings” in the same way as a harmonica.
  • In April through October, join Grandfather’s expert naturalists by the Bridge for Interpretive Talks about the our unique weather, climate, flora and fauna. Read more.
  • Need driving directions? The address for Grandfather Mountain’s entrance gate is 2050 Blowing Rock Highway, Linville, NC 28646 (click link for Google Maps). There are no shuttles, so you must have your own vehicle to explore our nature park. No RVs longer than 28 feet in length or hinged vehicles are allowed through the Entrance Gate. See detailed directions.
  • To see much more info, see our Plan Your Visit section.

Mile High Swinging Bridge History

Former North Carolina Tourism Director Charles J. Parker coined the name “Mile High Swinging Bridge” at the Bridge’s dedication in 1952. The term “mile high” refers to the structure’s elevation above sea level (5,280 feet). The term “swinging” refers to the fact that suspension bridges are free to sway.

The original 1952 bridge was designed by Charles Hartmann Jr. of Greensboro, N.C. It was fabricated in Greensboro and then reassembled on top of the Mountain. Erecting the bridge took three weeks, a process slowed by inclement weather created by a hurricane off the North Carolina coast. Cost was $15,000. It was dedicated on Sept. 2, 1952 by North Carolina Gov. William B. Umstead.

The bridge was rebuilt in 1999 using the original towers. The cables, floor boards and side rails were all replaced using galvanized steel. One of the main advantages of the modern building materials is that they do not have to be painted. Now, Grandfather Mountain employees will not have to hang out over the gorge to paint the span. It was redesigned by Sutton, Kennerly & Associates Engineering of Asheville, N.C., and rebuilt by Taylor & Murphy Construction Company of Asheville. The cost of rebuilding was $300,000.

Raft + Rail A Fully Guided Experience
Jul 14 all-day
The Great Smoky Mountains Railroad

The original Raft & Rail© since 1988: enjoy the two best adventures in the region in one day, great for families. Southern Living Magazine calls this “an ideal adventure for families, first-timers, young or old.” This full-day guided adventure starts with a Wildwater staff member greeting you at the train depot, followed by a scenic train trip, deli lunch with all the fixings, and a Nantahala River whitewater trip with a guide in every boat. Hot showers and a photo show follow immediately after your 8-mile Nantahala River trip. All transportation is included to and from the Bryson City Train Depot. Available April–October with the morning departure of the Nantahala Gorge Excursion departing Bryson City, NC. Train seating in Open Air Gondola. 2024 bookings starting soon!

Ticket fares subject to 7% Historic Preservation Fee and 7% North Carolina sales tax. Schedules, fares, motive power, equipment, seat selection, and meals are subject to change without notice. We guarantee the class of service you select. You will be notified if a change in schedule or motive power affects your reservation. Payment in full at booking by major credit card is required to finalize a reservation. You may cancel your reservation in full or in part and receive a refund less a $14.00 fee per adult ticket and $7.00 fee per child ticket as late as 5 days before departure, except The Polar Express Train Ride; The Polar Express Train Ride is as late as 60 days before departure. Within 5 days of the departure, or 60 days in the case of the Polar Express Train Ride, the reservation becomes nonrefundable. You may reschedule any time prior to your originally scheduled departure with a $7.00 fee per ticket for another date within the same calendar year. You may not reschedule a reservation after the scheduled departure.

Recreation Park Swimming Pool
Jul 14 all-day
Recreation Park

Swimming Pools

Asheville Parks & Recreation’s public pools provide safe and affordable outdoor summer fun for all ages. For info about pool schedules, please call 828-348-4770 or visit ashevillecitypools.com.

Malvern Hills Park’s 90 year-old outdoor pool will not open this summer. While we were able to keep the facility operational through last summer, the pool can no longer be repaired to safely meet the needs of our community. For more, read this article.

Admission

  • Individual – $3 per session
  • Individual Season Pass – $100
  • Family Season Pass – $150 (up to four individuals)

Locations

Events

  • Asheville Parks & Recreation hosts hundreds of free and low-cost activities, programs, and events each month. Check out the latest program guide.
  • Pools will open Saturday, May 25!

    Dates of Operation:
    Grant Center Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Sunday, August 11th
    Recreation Park Pool: Saturday, May 25th through Monday, September 2nd, weekends only from
    August 12th through September 2nd

    Pools open weekends only until June 10th, with the exception of Monday, May 27!

    Hours of Operation June 10 through August 11:
    Monday through Friday – 12:00pm-6:00pm
    Saturday – 11:00am-6:00pm
    Sunday – 1:00pm-6:00pm

    Cost is $3 per person per day

Barn Yoga
Jul 14 @ 9:00 am – 10:00 am
Hickory Nut Gap Farm

A Hickory Nut Gap tradition, back by popular demand! Bring your mat and mindfulness to the Big Barn to get centered.

Mary Beth believes yoga should be potent, but playful. She strives to deliver fluid, well balanced vignettes that offer physical expansion and mental restoration. She teaches gentle and vinyasa flow, all levels welcome! Variations encouraged, feel free to bring blocks, blankets or straps.

Make a day of it! Class lets out when the Farm Store opens, come shop the Farm Store for local meats and grocery goodies, grab a beer or beverage and wander the farm grounds to see the animals. Yogis get 10% off meat and eggs on class day.

Time: 9am-10am

Dates: April 28th | May 26th | June 30th | July 28th | August 25th | September 29th | October 27th

Price: $18/class OR Full Season, 7 classes for $100!

NC Arboretum Hiking Trails
Jul 14 @ 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
NC Arboretum

Located within the wildly-popular and botanically beautiful Southern Appalachian Mountains, The North Carolina Arboretum offers more than 10 miles of hiking trails that connect to many other area attractions such as Lake Powhatan, the Pisgah National Forest and the Blue Ridge Parkway. Visitors of all ages and abilities can enjoy their hiking experience at the Arboretum as trail options include easy, moderate, and difficult challenge levels. All trails are dog-friendly and visitors are asked to adhere to the proper waste disposing procedures for pets.

Part of a running group that would like to use the Arboretum as a starting point or parking location? Please review our Running Group Guidance and email [email protected] with any questions.

Outdoor Bonsai Exhibition Garden
Jul 14 @ 9:00 am – 5:00 pm
NC Arboretum

What is Bonsai?

Bonsai is a challenging and rewarding horticultural activity, in which ordinary plants are grown in an extraordinary way. Through rigorously applied cultivation techniques, trees, shrubs, vines and even herbaceous plants are kept in a miniaturized state, developed into artistic shapes and then displayed in special containers.

What makes the Arboretum’s bonsai endeavor unique among all other public collections in the United States? Regional Interpretation. Visitors will find the Arboretum’s bonsai collection of more than 100 specimens carefully cultivated with a Southern Appalachian accent. The collection draws inspiration from the traditional roots of bonsai, but takes the form of a contemporary, Southern Appalachian influenced American garden. Plantings in the landscape include species and cultivars of American, European and Asian origin.

 

The Bonsai Exhibition Garden

Established in October 2005, The North Carolina Arboretum’s Bonsai Exhibition Garden is a world renowned garden that displays up to 50 bonsai specimens at a time. Represented are traditional Asian bonsai subjects such as Japanese maple and Chinese elm, tropical plants such as willow-leaf fig and bougainvillea, and American species such as bald cypress and limber pine. Of particular importance are the plants native to the Blue Ridge region, such as American hornbeam and eastern white pine, which enable the Arboretum to bring the thousand-year tradition of bonsai home to the mountains of Western North Carolina. Interpretive signage throughout the garden conveys information about the art and history of bonsai, and the Arboretum’s own creative approach to it.

 

Outdoor Bonsai Exhibition Garden

  • Bonsai on Display Mid May – November; 9 a.m. – 5 p.m. daily
  • Garden Open Year Round
  • Parking Fees
    • Personal/Standard Vehicle (up to 20′ long): $20
    • Large vehicles (21′-29′ long): $60
    • Busses and Oversize Vehicles (30′ long+): $125
    • Members: Free

    Apart from the parking fee, there is no other admission charge to enter the Arboretum or our facilities, except in the case of advertised ticketed events.

Summer Splash Water Days
Jul 14 @ 9:00 am – 8:30 pm
Pack Square Park

Splasheville

Splasheville is located in Pack Square Park on 80 Court Plaza. The free splash pad’s regular daily hours are 9.m-8:30pm, but may close for special events or during inclement weather. Check the calendar for scheduled closures.

Adult Water Aerobics
Jul 14 @ 10:00 am – 10:50 am
Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Community Center’s Outdoor Pool

Saturdays from June 15-August 10, Dr. Wesley Grant Sr. Southside Community Center’s Outdoor Pool

10-10:50am .:. Free for Ages 60+ and $3 for Ages 18-59

B.A.L.L. (Be Active Live Longer) gentle water aerobics incorporate effective strategies to improve cardio fitness, build strength, boost mood, and ease joint pain.

Summer Cooling Flow
Jul 14 @ 10:30 am – 11:30 am
One World Brewing West

According to the science of Ayurveda, heat, inflammation, and irritation rise in our bodies over the summer. We use our yoga practice to cool our bodies every week to insure we are not allowing toxins and inflammation to build.

Must have some experience with yoga. Class is held outside on the backyard stage at One World Brewing West. Bring a mat and water bottle!

Drop ins welcome, no need to preregister.

Summer Splash Water Days
Jul 14 @ 11:00 am – 2:00 pm
Carrier Park

Dive into a world of water-themed activities and beat the heat with an array of aquatic adventures.

Downtown Asheville Treasure Hunt – Walking Team Scavenger Hunt!
Jul 14 @ 2:00 pm
Dssolvr

Guests will meet at Dssolvr Asheville (63 N. Lexington Ave, Asheville, NC 28801) and then depart with their treasure map on a walking team scavenger hunt where they will use their minds and feet to follow clues, solve puzzles, and crack codes to find and unlock the treasure chest for a grand prize!

The hunt involves walking a distance of up to 2.0 miles in total and will take place rain or shine, so long as the weather does not become dangerous. The hunt typically takes about 60 minutes to complete.

Children under 10 years old are welcome to participate for free with the purchase of an Adult ticket.

Katie Oates with Owen Walsh | Sundays on the River Series
Jul 14 @ 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm
Olivette Riverside Pavilion

Enjoy an outdoor concert on the French Broad River by Katie Oates and special guest Owen Walsh!

Katie Oates knows how to sing. She’s been singing for as long as she can remember. The daughter of a preacher, she belted hymns from her crib as a toddler to wake up her parents. Over the years she has trained with many vocal coaches and songwriting mentors and sung a wide variety of music genres (classical, folk, music theatre, blues, jazz, country, spirituals/sacred) in diverse venues: churches, homeless shelters, theatres of all sizes, bars, festivals, conferences, house concerts and listening rooms. But finding her own voice—that’s another story.

In Katie’s 5th album (Edge of a Hurricane, 2024), she plumbed the depths of human emotion in her songwriting. She confesses: “Some songs are quite different from what people expect to hear from me—or any folk singer. I travel through anger, humor, despair, hope, sass, sincerity and everything in between. Even the most hopeful ballads on the album all emerge from a hard-fought battle with despair. Because in the end I think it’s as simple as a choice we each have to make between darkness and light. Hate seems so powerful, but all hate can do is destroy; only love can create something new. So I choose love. I hope you will, too. And maybe our small little acts will make a difference.”

Owen Walsh has been telling stories and performing music his entire life. Born and raised on the banks of the Lackawaxen River in Honesdale, Pennsylvania—a small, historic coal-mining town that spawned the American railroad—Owen grew up surrounded by relics of 19th Century American life and imagery ripe for musical exploitation.

His years of formal violin and classical guitar training, zest for informal improvisation, and love of folk-lore storytelling combine to create a unique blend of musical expression. His recently released debut album, On My Way, has been met with critical acclaim and charted at #9 on Folk Radio in the second month of its release.
Owen now lives in Asheville, NC where he performs music regularly, writes for various publications and constructs crosswords in his spare time.

Music By the Lake – Nicholas Edward Williams
Jul 14 @ 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Blue Ridge Community College

music by the lake


Blue Ridge Community College, Flat Rock, NC

Each summer, Blue Ridge Community College offers summer concerts beside the College lake as a gift to the community. These free concerts feature a wide range of musical and vocal groups. Bring a lawn chairs and picnic to enjoy the music by the lake. Organized by Blue Ridge Community College.

In the event of inclement weather, the concert will take place in the Technology, Education & Development Center (TEDC) Building.

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