• A band packs in a good-sized Village Green Commons crowd at a previous Leaf Festival. The festival is a hit with plateau leaf peepers and typically draws thousands of arts and crafts and live music lovers. (File photo.)

Cashiers gets all ‘artsy and craftsy’ over Columbus Day weekend

CASHIERS -- Against the backdrop of the plateau’s explosion of fall color, the Greater Cashiers Area Merchants Association in collaboration with the Village Green will host the groups’ eighth annual Leaf Festival this Friday-Sunday, Oct. 6-8 at the Village Green and Commons in Cashiers. The park, which abounds in natural beauty in autumn, will be even further decked out in special pumpkin and hay bale displays set up to enhance its autumn flavor for festival goers.

This year’s festival is expected to welcome more than 100 artisans and merchants who will fill the park, which is located directly in the center of Cashiers at the crossroads of U.S. Highway 64 and N.C. Highway 107.

Typically, a few thousand people attend. “It’s a very popular event,” said Ann Self, executive director of the Village Green. “It gives us a chance to show off our bucolic mountain charm.” She added that it was Cashiers’ largest arts and crafts festival of the year. “Everyone comes to Cashiers to see the leaves then and its Columbus Day weekend, so a lot of people like to visit here then. It’s a great opportunity to get a jump start on Christmas shopping.”

Visitors will find unique handcrafted wood, pottery, jewelry and much more on display and available for purchase throughout the weekend. An array of food and beverages will also be available from vendors and food trucks. “Last year the kettle corn vendor was set up right outside my office and every time they fired that thing up it smelled so good,” Self said.

Free live music is scheduled from noon to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday (Oct. 7 and 8) on two different stages on opposite sides of the park -- the Village Green Commons stage near Frank Allen Road and the Village Green gazebo stage near the crossroads. Names of the bands that are appearing won’t be announced until later, but are likely to include popular local and regional favorites. They will range in genre from singer/songwriters, to jazz, blues, Americana, bluegrass, rock, soul, funk and more. All of the shows are free and open to the public.

The Leaf Festival’s arts and crafts vendors will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. all days -- Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Festival goers are cautioned that parking is limited for Village Green events.

Volunteer and vendor opportunities are still available for artisans, merchants and nonprofit organizations.

For information, visit the Greater Cashiers Area Merchants Association’s website at www.visitcashiersvalley.com, email gcama2015@gmail.com or call the association’s office at 828-743-8428 or 828-734-4487. 

Crossroads Chronicle

Mailing Address:
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Cashiers, NC 28717
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