The Blue Ridge Experience

It all started in the 1920s, with the construction of Lake Blue Ridge. That bought the first second home owners to Blue Ridge. At the time, the big attraction was Muskie fishing (they tell me there are still a few left in the lake).For many years, the development around the lake was the only second home development in the county. That started to change in the 1980s, with the growth of the cabin market. When I came in 1986, there were already several well known mountain developments. The trend accelerated through the next ten years, which also saw the beginning of the redevelopment of the old downtown, which had become a virtual ghost town.

By the year 2001, most of the old downtown had been – or was in the process of being – redeveloped. Today, the old downtown is crammed with interesting shops, restaurants, and taverns, making it a destination shopping experience.

Other local attractions include Mercier Orchards, the Arts in the Park Festival, and the Blue Ridge BBQ & Blues Festival.