Posts Tagged ‘Downtown’
Blue Ridge Fire & Ice – Chili Cook Off is February 16
Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals will be at it again this year! This time the “Chicks”… Heather Stam and former Cooking Chick Kathryn Harris will be preparing a Top Secret chili. This recipe is so Top Secret that we will feature it in the SoCo Cabins March newsletter! This annual event is sure to be a hit so show up early and taste your way down Main street. Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off will feature Interactive Professional Ice carvers as well as demonstrations. Chili Cook off, Live music, Ice skating rink set up in the City of Blue Ridge Park. Lots of fun for the whole family!
Blue Ridge Fire and Ice event information – 12:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. Live Music from 1 to 4pm. All located in the Downtown Shopping district. Entry fee is $35, tasting tickets $5. Activities for Kids too!
Make it a weekend and book a Luxury or Cozy cabin rental near Blue Ridge or tucked away in the forest near a mountain stream. Visit the SCCR website to learn more and check availablity.
The Blue Ridge Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off is sponsored by the Blue Ridge Business Association
Looking for FREE Tickets to the Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ?!
September is approaching fast, and as the air gets just a little cooler and the leaves begin their yearly transformation from green, to orange and to red, the 2nd annual Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ Festival is back for another year of the best BBQ and Blues North Georgia has to offer!
Thousands came last year, and this year we expect an even better turn out for what promises to be a memorable weekend in gorgeous Blue Ridge, Georgia. Start booking your vacation cabin rental early this year and stay for the weekend, because the fun starts on September 21st, the day before this year’s Blues and BBQ Festival with the first annual Blue Ridge Blues Crawl!
Brought to you by the Blue Ridge Lodging Association, the Blues Crawl takes place from 6pm-10pm and allows Blues and BBQ enthusiasts from all parts of the Southeast to make their way through Downtown Blue Ridge, where local restaurants Blue Orleans Bistro, Blue Ridge Brewery, Christy Lee’s Courtyard Grill, The Vine Wine & Bistro, and The Whistle Stop Grill will all put a distinctive, exciting twist on their versions of BBQ!
Stay the night in the beautiful North Georgia Mountains and have ease of access to the Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ Festival the day after the Blues Crawl. Gates open at 12pm, and the festivities last until 9pm. Attendees will sample the tasty culinary treats of local vendors like Merciers Orchards and the Blue Ridge Inn Bed and Breakfast, and also the regionally recognized BBQ of cookers such as Sam’s BBQ 1 and Grillin Gangsters BBQ, just to name a few.
And what would a Blues and BBQ Festival be without Blues? Wash that BBQ down with a Sweetwater Brew, and listen to some of the most talented Blues musicians in the nation all in Downtown Blue Ridge. Rolling Bones, Roger “Hurricane” Wilson, Frankie’s Blues Mission and Revenge will provide soulful, energizing blues tunes throughout the afternoon and evening. And fresh off this year’s tour with legendary artist BB King, E.G Kight will make her presence known at this year’s festival, as she delights fans with her powerful, moving voice and blues rhythms.
Last year we were at capacity before the Blues and BBQ Festival took place, and this year properties will go even faster! So make sure to book soon and make your getaway vacation on September 21st and 22nd into an exciting weekend that you’ll remember for years to come! If you rent a blue ridge cabin two nights or more before September 1, 2012 Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals will buy up to 6 tickets to the Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ festival. Tickets to the Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ Festival will be included in your arrival package!
Looking for something unique to do when you visit Blue Ridge, Ga? Feel the ground rush and experience Blue Ridge in an unforgettable way… Check out the scenic tour of the North Georgia Mountains by helicopter! The one and only 600 Feet above the rest!
“It was awesome!” exclaimed two guests of Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals. They created a customized tour and flew over the cabin where they were staying then we went on to fly over Downtown Blue Ridge, Lake Blue Ridge, the Dam and the Toccoa River. The icing on the cake was the Texas two step and the ground rush experience, both which were executed on a private farm. The Texas two step is a special maneuver where the pilot holds the helicopter about 5 to 10 feet above the ground and starts to move it side to side. This motion creates a type of shimmy as you float right above the ground. After that they flew very fast across a field and a small lake then lifted off straight up to 600 feet. The pilot was extremely knowledgeable and you could tell he was very comfortable operating the helicopter and talking with us about the area.
Blue Ridge Helicopters has several tours available starting as low as $40 per person. Custom tours are also available for a special occasion (such as a proposal). The staff is very professional and accommodating. Learn more about helicopter rides in Blue Ridge, GA with Blue Ridge Helicopters.
Stop in to the Blue Ridge Adventure center for more details or visit their helipad located just south of Blue Ridge on hwy 515 at 1512 Appalachian Hwy. Blue Ridge GA 30513 Click here for a Google Maps Link
It was a beautiful 59 degrees on Saturday over presidents day weekend for the annual Fire and Ice Chili Cook-off. This annual event took place in historic Downtown Blue Ridge right across the tracks from Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals and Blue Ridge Adventure Center and behind the main street businesses. Hungry chili-eaters of all ages lined up in anticipation, waiting for the 12 o’clock hour to hit and the chili sampling to begin.
It was a jubilees event, with classic “golden oldies” playing over the sound system and happy event-goers dancing unabashedly in the streets, often times with pets and children. Vendors from around Blue Ridge flocked to the Chili Cook-off to show off their wares, and more importantly, give away their one-of-a kind chili samples.
Some recognizable names included Harvest on Main, who prepared a savory concoction of different cuts of meat in what they called a “classic style chili”, or one without any beans. Christy Lee’s Courtyard Grill, and Mercier Orchards came prepared with strong showings, with both chili’s containing unique spices and ingredients that had people asking for more. Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals made a huge impression on the crowd, showcasing their people-friendly approach with their own sound system and what was perhaps the most original chili blend of the day, which included several secret ingredients that provided chili lovers with “sweet heat”. People swarmed for the innovative chili batch, using sample cups and utensils faster than SoCo could keep up with them.
And the winners, you ask? Christy Lee’s won People’s Choice, Trout Unlimited won best organization, and Mercier Orchard the coveted judges award for best tasting chili.
In the end the event was a huge success, bringing great attention to Blue Ridge with a crowd three times the size of last year’s event, 1/3 of which was local and the rest reportedly from Atlanta and Florida. The night was capped off with the soulful sounds of Francene Reed, veteran of the Blue Ridge Blues & BBQ Event and master of Blues music.
Plan on attending next year and make it a weekend… Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals will provide the setting, you make the memories!
There’s whiskey in them there hills! “That’s some good chili! Whats your recipe? Well… I’d be lying if I told you there wasn’t whiskey in it!” And its true, the boys for Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals cooked a killer batch of chili for this years Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off in Downtown Blue Ridge.
The story starts on a family vacation to Blue Ridge, when the newest addition to the SoCo family cooked up an unusually excellent pot of chili, dubbed “sweet-heat”. You could also call it a family tradition from now on. The recipe had been in development for several years and was under constant refinement. The latest ingredient a.k.a “whiskey” was not added to the recipe until another visit to Blue Ridge. Our chef Matt Maddox planned a bachelor party for one of his long time friends and it happen to be on the same weekend as the first Blue Ridge Fire and Ice Cook Off. Jokingly, this is when our plan started to brew out of a simple suggestion. “You should enter your chili next year!” the seed was planted.
Team SoCo Started cooking after work late on Friday night prior to the event. Due to Chili shortages the prior year the Blue Ridge Business Association modified the amount of chili to 10 gallons. The rules stated that teams must cook 5 gallons prior to the cook off and the cook another 5 gallons at the event. A small amount of the five gallons cooked at the event would be used for the Judges and the rest could be given as samples for the people choice award. Our communications intern from Reinhardt College was at the event to cover the festivities first hand. Here is what he wrote about the 2012 Fire and Ice Chili Cook Off.
Special thanks to YOU… The Fans, Volunteers, City of Blue Ridge, Fannin County Chamber of Commerce & The Humane Society of Blue Ridge.
September 10th, 2011 was an exciting day as several thousand locals and tourists flocked to Downtown Blue Ridge, Georgia for the first annual Blue Ridge Blues & BBQ Festival. The sun was shining, the temperature was mild, and the smell BBQ filled the air.
The event was hosted by the Blue Ridge Lodging Association, and was run like a well-oiled machine thanks to Beverly Seckinger of Seckinger Productions and Sue Ann Morgan, president of ideaLand. Gate entry was quick and efficient, volunteers were helpful, and there were plenty of bathrooms and trash receptacles on the festival grounds.
Vendors were positioned along East Main Street and West Main Street, and featured Blue Ridge’s finest foods and products.
“Have you tried the alligator ribs yet?” asked one enthused festival attendee in between sips of Sweetwater beer. “I just had a fish taco too, and it was amazing. You’ve got to stop by Blue Orleans’ spot and some of the other food tents and check out the food.”
Such was the sentiment of all those who came to the North Georgia mountains for the event. With everything from brisket sliders courtesy of Harvest on Main to delectable fried pies from Mercier Orchards, it was hard to save room for the award-winning BBQ from Sam’s BBQ-1 and the plethora of other BBQ vendors. Enthusiasts were abound, as wait times for the ‘cue ran up to 20 minutes.
But the food wasn’t the only reason that so many came out to partake in the festivities. One couldn’t forget the authentic, soul-soothing Blues provided by Frankie’s Blues Mission, Blacktop Blues Band and The King Bees who played throughout the day, creating an almost palpable character and flavor that added to everyone’s enjoyment.
“I just can’t wait for Francine Reed to take the stage,” said Professor Phil Unger from Reinhardt University. “She’s a really big deal in the Blues community. I was at another BBQ event on Labor Day, and even there they mentioned her coming to Blue Ridge today.”
As the sun went down and night time came, the moon shone brightly on those that gathered and danced to the soulful styling of the Blues legend. It was the perfect scene to end a great day.
As the people of our great nation remember those who lost their lives in the tragic attacks on September 11, 2001 we are reminded that it is events like the Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ festival that truly pay homage to our American culture. It is proof that the American spirit lives on defiantly in the face of adversity and threat. Through distinctly American food and song, that spirit was honored as all who came out gathered together as one, celebrating those things that truly define the Southeast and American culture as a whole.
Add your thoughts and comments here or on the official Downtown Blue Ridge Blues and BBQ facebook page
Action, adventure, relaxation, and good times await your arrival in Blue Ridge, GA… Here’s whats happening in Blue Ridge Georgia October 2011!
Postmortem – Blue Ridge Community Theater 2591 East 1st Street across from The Swan Drive-In
By Ken Ludwig. (You may remember his other plays the theater has done, Lend Me a Tenor, Leading Ladies and Moon Over Buffalo which were all sellouts) This clever thriller is set in a magnificent pseudo-medieval castle on a bluff overlooking the Connecticut River. Here, an avid Sherlock Holmes actor has invited guests for a séance. The scene is set for murder, humor and intrigue and the actor works to solve the case himself, à la his alter-ego, Sherlock Holmes. Rated R (mature subject matter, language and suspense) Friday’s at 7:30 and Sunday’s at 2:00 p.m. Blue Ridge Community Theater Box Office or you may purchase tickets online 706-632-9223 Visit web site
John C. Campbell Fall Festival – Brasstown, N.C. October 01, 2011- October 02, 2011
Celebrate the rich heritage of the Appalachians at the annual fall festival, featuring over 180 juried and non-juried crafts people. Continous Live Music and dance, craft demonstrations good food and much more!
John C. Campbell Folk School 800-365-5724 Visit web site
Indian Summer Festival – Suches, Ga Woody Gap School October 01, 2011- October 02, 2011
Car Show ~ Music ~ Pottery ~ Quilts ~ Home made Goodies ~ Leather Crafts ~ Needlework ~ Folk Art Jewelry ~ Furniture ~ ~ Photographs ~ Stained Glass ~ Whirligigs ~ More Free Parking, Admission is $4.00 Children under 6 are free.
Blairsville-Union County Chamber of Commerce 706-747-2401 Visit web site
Grace and Glorie – Blue Ridge Community Theater 2591 East 1st Street across from The Swan Drive-In
By Tom Ziegler. Grace is Velveeta and Wonder Bread and Gloria is Brie and lobster. Grace can’t read or write and Gloria can’t figure out Grace’s wood stove. Gloria volunteers for Hospice, an organization that, among other things, helps the terminally ill live their last days comfortably. Grace is her uncooperative new assignment. This tightly crafted play explores the differences and similarities between the two women. The contrast results in a touching and funny play. Rated PG (language) Showtimes on Thursday’s, Friday’s and Saturday’s at 7:30 p.m. with Sunday’s at 2:00 p.m.
Blue Ridge Community Theater Box Office or On-line 706-632-9223 Visit web site
Georgia Mountain Fall Festival – Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds. Hiawassee, Ga. October 07, 2011- October 15, 2011
Arts, crafts & exhibits. Clogging, singing, authentic mountain demonstrations, pioneer village, kiddie rides and a new show, Kay Rosaires Big Cat Encounter. Regional food and lots of fun for the whole family. Also included in this is the Ole Time Fiddlers Convention. Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds 706-896-4191 Visit web site
Fall Arts in the Park – Downtown Blue Ridge City Park October 08, 2011- October 09, 2011
A southern tradition in the Spring, we are now adding a second Arts in the Park in the Fall, featuring over 200 arts, crafts and food booths. The best in mountain crafts and fine arts, artist’s demonstrations, music and dance. Arts in the Park in the Spring has been recognized as one of the Top 20 Events by the Southeastern Tourism Society. Sponsored by the Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association. Admission is $5.00.
Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association 706-632-2144 Visit web site
Apple Festival – Ellijay 15 minutes west of Blue Ridge October 08, 2011- October 09, 2011 & October 15, 2011- October 16, 2011
40th Annual Apple Festival, over 300 vendors with handmade/hand crafted items, on-site demonstrations. Lots of good things to eat. Other fun things to do will be an antique car show on the 8th and a parade on the 15th.
For more information, call the County Chamber of Commerce @ 706-635-7400 or visit the web site. Visit web site
Home Builders Showcase 2011 – Downtown Blue Ridge City Park Saturday October 15, 2011- October 16, 2011 from 8-5 p.m. and Sunday from 10-5 p.m.
No admission fee and is open to the public. Exhibitors from the building industry; Architects, Builders, Cabinet Makers, Developers, Flooring, Glassworks, Heating/Cooling, Home Furnishings, Insurers, Mortgage Lenders, Realtors, Security Systems, Stonework, Surveyors and more. Food vendors & prize drawings.
Tammie / Fannin County Building Industry Association 706-632-8361 Visit web site
Mountain Harvest Arts and Craft Sale – Blue Ridge Farmer’s Market October 15, 2011- October 16, 2011 & October 22, 2011- October 23, 2011
40th Annual Event. 9:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Mountain Arts & Crafts, food and fun for the whole family. No admission fee and free parking. Lots of local vendors.
Fannin County Homemakers Council / Joyce Patrick 706-258-4848
Halloween Safe Zone – Blue Ridge, Downtown October 31, 2011
Hundreds of costumed kids and grown-up kids plus your pets are welcome gather in downtown Blue Ridge to celebrate. Fun begins at 6:00 and runs until 8:30. Costume contest begins at 6:15, with a pet contest at 7:30. Halloween Movies in the park beginning at dusk. 706-633-7400 Visit web site
SEE NOVEMBER EVENTS AND ACTIVITIES
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Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals and the Big Peach Running Company to compete in Tri the Mountains Triathlon July 24, 2011
Be sure to come out and support our Team! Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals will be competing in the relay division of Tri the Mountains a sprint Triathlon in the North Georgia mountains! When Heather and CJ Stam of Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals worked as volunteers at the 2010 race a friendly challenge was cast by one of the owners and now title sponsor Escape to Blue Ridge. Not one to shy away from a friendly nudge, we answered the call! A team of three racers will each take one leg of the race. CJ Stam of Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals will start with a splash into a 600 yard fresh water swim in Lake Blue Ridge. Followed by Greg Dunn a local personal trainer and former professional cyclist who will then venture out and on his road bike over an 18 mile mountain course. then our anchor Mike Cosentino of the Big Peach Running Company will then dash 3.2 miles from the Marina to Downtown Blue Ridge.
Spectators, family, friends and support teams will all cheer as racers enter the Historic town of Blue Ridge to cross the finish line. The 2011 Triathlon is presented by local businesses Escape to Blue Ridge and Harvest on Main along with several national name brands. Tri the Mountains is a non profit organization and pledges a portion of all proceeds to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Be sure to stick around for awards ceremony to see the winners take their prizes in the shade of the city park.
An epic event like Tri the Mountains reinforces why Blue Ridge is your base camp for adventure in the North Georgia Mountains. Racers, day trippers, tourist and Blue Ridge locals should all consider putting this high energy family friendly event on your schedule every year!
Independence day celebration in the north Georgia mountains
Whether you call it the Old Timers Parade, Old Timey Parade or just the 2nd of July parade, Downtown Blue Ridge will kick off the 4th of July weekend with a blast! Bring the whole family out and celebrate the independence of our great country beginning at 10:00a.m.
The day starts with the annual parade, which begins its march on West Main Street in Historic Downtown Blue Ridge near the
playground. Kids will fall in love with the floats and attractions, including Maggie the Mayfield Cow, Brooster the Giant Rooster and Grand Marshall Colonel George Pletcher. The parade will then veer left on Mountain Street, where it will continue on to cross the train depot and conclude on East Main Street.
After the parade, gather your family and friends in Blue Ridge City Park and enjoy the “alterna – grass” sound of the Roxie – Watson Band from Atlanta. Lovers of blue grass and good times can kick back in front of the stage setup and enjoy the music with an adult beverage from the beer tent provided. Visitors can stretch their legs and visit the Blue Ridge Farmers Market where farm fresh produce and locally made products will be for sale. All local vendors and eclectic shops in Downtown Blue Ridge will be open for business. Also don’t forget to enjoy BBQ and live music from local talent at the Blue Ridge Lake Marina, starting at 4p.m.
As the sun begins to go down, don’t forget to stick around for the breathtaking fireworks display. Visitors are encouraged to take in the views from atop the Lake Blue Ridge Dam, which will be open starting at 7p.m.(Dam is closed to cars, visitors must park and then walk to the Dam). Parking is available in all marked spaces, and also at the Fannin County Recreation Department. Come out this July 4th weekend and have a great time with your friends and family in Historic Downtown Blue Ridge.
Be sure to stop by the Blue Ridge Adventure Center and see your friends at Southern Comfort Cabin Rentals while you celebrate freedom!
And it was a beautiful weekend to do just that in Blue Ridge.
I had the amazing opportunity to attend the Blue Ridge Arts in The Park Festival this past Memorial Day weekend. I hope some of you took me up on my offer to come frolic as well. I spent most of my time there on Sunday, and I got to meet so many unbelievably talented artists. I felt blessed just to be in their presence. Being an artist myself, I know the courage it takes to put yourself and your art out into an arena like that. It is an extremely vulnerable undertaking. I commend each and every person who had the courage to do what they did.
As I wandered around the park in downtown Blue Ridge, I lazily stopped in to booth after booth.
There were a few that really caught my eye. One of the first was Michael Lee’s booth. The tag line on his business card says “Poetry of Motion Captured in Oil”. That’s all he had to say. I was transfixed. I was immediately drawn to his equestrian paintings, as I grew up with a “horse person”, and have an ingrained appreciation for those majestic, magical creatures. You can find more of his art on his website.
I also ran into this character, Robert C. Perry. He’s a folk artist, and his art is incredibly creative and eye-catching. Most of what he had displayed were wood carvings, some black and white, some bursting with color. All of them had a magnetic quality that drew me into his world. I hung around and talked to him for a bit, and I felt like I was a guest in his home. See more of his beautiful work here.
I am particularly fond of art that has a humorous side to it, and I was drawn in to Frank Gee’s booth. Here’s why:
Aren’t those two of the greatest paintings you’ve ever seen? Please take the time to check out his website. His paintings of birds cracked me up, and I learned things about gorillas I had never known. Also, any of his paintings with “breast” in the title… well, I’ll let you see for yourself.
The next booth I walked by had this proudly displayed outside:
I was a goner. For some reason, anything made out of chains or barbed wire is just…cool. I also have a disturbing fascination with snakes. My mom, who joined me this weekend, was quick to point out the symbolism of the apple, which was placed in front of the snake. This may be the source of some future therapy… I’ll keep you posted. Tom Shumaker, the proud artist of this unique booth, aptly named “Barbed Creation”, was a very kind soul for someone who works with barbed wire. He offered to answer any questions we had, the first of which was “How many scars do you have?” He quickly showed me both arms and hands, scar free. I was duly impressed. So impressed, actually, that I will be interviewing him for a piece on my own blog, where I highlight one artist, once a month. It should be a very interesting interview! Here is another of Tom’s fine creations:
I strolled by this motley crew as they were testing their mics for what I’m sure was an amazing set of folk music and fun in front of the Blue Ridge Mountains Arts Association. If you haven’t already, check out the history of this beautiful building here. Better yet, mosey on up to Blue Ridge, and check it out yourself. It’s worth a trip on it’s own, not to mention the rest of the town.
Another booth where I felt drawn to dawdle was Pam Nelson Smith’s booth. What first caught my eye was an oil painting of a young ballerina. I am a sucker for pictures of ballerinas, as I was one myself years ago. They are so graceful and poised, and when an artist is able to catch this on film or canvas, I’m sold. Her paintings ranged from children running and playing, women on horse back, and portraits of famous people, namely Johnny Depp. (Okay fine, this was really what caused me to stick around.) I spent some time talking to Pam, and found her to be very open and genuine, two qualities I really admire in a person. Please take the time to check out her website. Her art will help you breathe easier. Good art will do that to ya.
My last stop before the sun did me in was at Bebo Folk Art. His colorful signs and spectacular wood carvings of snakes, butterflies and other “critters” are indicative of the joy that radiates from Bebo. I spent a good amount of time talking to Bebo about his work, and he has graciously agreed to let me use the pictures I took of some of his paintings on one of my personal social media sites. He is a man filled with joy and enthusiasm for life, and this shows through his art.
So, I reluctantly parted ways with Bebo, and headed back to the car to meet my mom and our dog, who had long ago retreated to the A/C. I am so grateful that I was able to spend time among the incredibly talented and creative people I met this weekend. I was humbled by the experience, and inspired to be the best artist I can be. Thanks to the Blue Ridge Arts Center for making this a possibility for all of us, and also to the town of Blue Ridge for welcoming us so graciously.
All pictures used with permission of the artists.