Things To Do

Festivals

Looking to experience Townsend’s culture? We have plenty of regular entertainment options but don’t forget to look at our calendar of events for information about other special events happening during your stay. Look for festivals and other special events in Townsend throughout the year. These events are the perfect opportunity for everyone to come together and enjoy local music, food, and crafts. Once you come, you’ll find yourself wanting to return each year!

Spring Festival and Old Timer’s Day

This festival brings something for everyone to partake in. Things to enjoy range from eating delicious barbeque, listening to bluegrass music, watching clogging and crafting. You can even bring your own instrument and join in the sounds!

Fall Heritage and Old Timer’s Day

In the fall, the town gets together for another fun-filled festival with local food, bluegrass music, demonstrations, and crafts. You’re invited to bring your own lawn chairs and set them up by the music stage or set up a blanket for the kids to watch the stars.

Both festivals bring quality family activities, fantastic food, and catchy music together in a way that will bring a smile to your face. Find out more →

Smoky Mountain Fiber Arts Festival

Each spring in Townsend, this festival celebrating the art of transforming fleece into finished goods takes place. This year’s festival is on April 20-22. By joining, you can partake in classes, watch demonstrations and peruse the vendors selling supplies, tools and handmade yarn goods.

Tennessee Pottery Festival

The Tennessee Pottery Festival, held at the Great Smoky Mountains Heritage Center in Towsend, features some of the areas finest pottery. Here, you have the opportunity to view and purchase handmade goods or discuss the different styles with the experts. You’re sure to find a beautiful, unique decoration to take home. Find out more →

Smoky Mountain Woodcarving Festival

The annual Smoky Mountain Woodcarving Festival and show invites woodcarvers of all levels to compete and display their work. Carvers from around the nation travel to compete and the show is open to anyone interested. Find out more →

Synchronous Fireflies

While not an official festival, each year visitors from all over travel to the Smoky Mountains to view the breathtaking spectacle of the largest population of synchronous fireflies in the Western Hemisphere. Tens-of-thousands of fireflies (or as we sometimes like to call them, “lightning bugs”) gather together to create a beautiful twinkling display. 2018 dates have not yet been announced, but the synchronous fireflies typically appear between late May and mid-June. Stay tuned for more information! Find out more →

Hot Air Balloon Festival

The Great Smoky Mountains Hot Air Balloon Festival is sure to delight spectators of all ages when professional balloonists take to the air for the second year in a row. This year’s event will be held on August 18, 2018. Find out more →

Grains & Grits

The 3rd annual Grains & Grits festival is a celebration of Townsend’s contribution to the Tennessee Whiskey Trail. In addition to an in-depth look at Southern spirits, this event will have plenty of food to fill your belly (and your Instagram account). This year’s event takes place November 4-5, 2018. Find out more →

Dancing Bear Bicycle Bash

This year, the annual Dancing Bear Bicycle Bash benefits Bike Elf, an organization that provides bicycles to children and young adults in East Tennessee. Participants can sign up for a 28, 37, or 59-mile ride and other swag will be available. This year’s event takes place September 15, 2018. Find out more →

Great Smoky Mountain H.O.G. (Harley Owners Group) Rally

Presented by the “Official Riding Club” of the Harley-Davidson Motor Company, The Great Smoky Mountain HOG Rally is a five-day event featuring daily guided rides, an abundance of non-guided rides, nightly entertainment “tributing” Rock and Roll’s most beloved acts and more southern charm and hospitality than you can ever imagine. This year’s event is May 29 – June 2.

Smoky Mountain Crawl

The Smoky Mountain Crawl is a gathering of mini-bike enthusiasts to network, show off their bikes, and meet with popular vendors and dealers, such as Kawasaki, Honda, and more. This is a free event with plenty of competitions and giveaways. This year’s event is June 8 – 10.