Two Rhododendron Festivals (North Carolina version and Tennessee version) are held in the Roan Mountain (see our Roan Mountain Guide) area on the second or third weekend of June (depending on when peak bloom is expected). The North Carolina Rhododendron Festival is celebrated in the small downtown area of Bakersville, NC. The Tennessee Rhododendron Festival is held at the Roan Mountain State Park.
North Carolina Rhododendron Festival, Bakersville
June 19-20, 2015
NC Rhododendron Pageant at Bowman Middle School: Friday, first round of competition includes Junior division talent and Senior division swimsuit. Special entertainment provided by former Rhododendron queens. Saturday: Final round of competition includes Senior division talent, Junior and Senior evening gown, and crowning of the NC Rhododendron Queens.
Rhodondendron Car Show: Saturday, Bowman Middle School football field. 10 AM-3 PM. A small admission fee will be charged for spectators. Awards include: Trophies for Top 50, Best of Show and Peoples Choice. Lots of Golden Oldies music and family fun! Tickets will be sold for 50/50 drawing.
Rhododendron Street Fair: Saturday, on the Creekwalk in Bakersville from 9 AM-4 PM. Arts, crafts and food vendors, live entertainment, ducky derby, and helicopter rides taking off from Bakersville Fire Dept. Free admission.
Ducky Derby: Saturday, along the Creek Walk. Watch and cheer on your own as thousands of ducks race down Cane Creek in this Festival fundraiser that is a real kid-favorite event! Tickets are available from any Festival Committee Member during the Street Fair.
Street Dance: Friday and Saturday Nights, Rhododendron Square Dance on the street! Dance will be on main street in Bakersville, in front of United Community Bank. Live music will be provided.
Golf Tournament: Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at Grassy Creek Golf and Country Club. Call 828-765-7436 for information.
Rhododendron 10K Run: Race begins at Gouge School in Bakersville.
Tennessee Rhododendron Festival: June 20-21, 2015
The festival is held the third weekend or fourth weekend of June, depending on the peak of the rhododendron bloom. The Tennessee Rhododendron Festival will be outdoors at Roan Mountain State Park on Saturday 10 till 7; Sunday 10 till 5 p.m. It features handmade crafts, food, and a variety of traditional music, plus an array of old-time folkway demonstrations. Over 100 arts and crafts vendors. A variety of food available. Visit the world's largest natural rhododendron gardens atop 6000-ft Roan Mountain.
Roan Mountain State Park is on Hwy 143, Roan Mountain, Tennessee (near the North Carolina state line).