Wilkesboro: Host Town for Many Events, East of Boone


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Wilkesboro is a host town for many events in Wilkes County, North Carolina.

The motto of Wilkesboro is "Where the Mountains Begin".

Wilkesboro is located at the foot of the picturesque Blue Ridge Mountains and has a rich history dating back to the late 18th century.

Wilkesboro is characterized by the following.

  • History: Founded in 1800, Wilkesboro was named for John Wilkes, a British statesman who supported the cause of the American colonies during the Revolutionary War.
  • Scenic Beauty: The area boasts a beautiful natural setting with rolling hills, lush greenery, and access to nearby parks and recreational areas, making it a popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts.
  • Music Heritage: Wilkesboro is famous for its annual MerleFest, a renowned music festival celebrating Americana, bluegrass, folk, and other genres. Named for Eddy Merle Watson, son of the late guitarist Doc Watson, MerleFest attracts musicians and fans from around the world.
  • Economy: Historically, Wilkesboro's economy was heavily dependent on agriculture, especially tobacco cultivation. However, as the economy has diversified, industries such as manufacturing, retail, and healthcare have become major contributors.
  • Community and Culture: Wilkesboro maintains a strong sense of community and cultural heritage with a variety of events, festivals, and historic buildings that celebrate its rich history.
  • Transportation: Wilkesboro is located in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and is accessible by major highways, including US Route 421, which connects to nearby cities such as Winston-Salem and Boone.
  • Recreational Activities: Outdoor activities include hiking, fishing, and exploring state parks such as Stone Mountain State Park and W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir.
  • Education: Wilkesboro has public schools and educational institutions such as Wilkes Community College, which offers a variety of academic programs and vocational training.

Overall, Wilkesboro is a scenic and historically rich town that combines small-town charm with opportunities for outdoor adventure and cultural experiences.

Wilkesboro attracts visitors and residents alike with its natural beauty, events, and strong community spirit.

Wilkesboro is located about 31miles (50km) east of Boone, about 40 minutes by car.

If you would like to know more about Boone, please click the following.

Here are introductory videos of Wilkesboro.

Events in Wilkesboro

Here are some of the events taking place in Wilkesboro.


MerleFest is an annual "Traditional Plus" music festival held on the Wilkes Community College campus.

Held the last weekend in April, MerleFest was organized by Grammy Award winner Doc Watson before his death and named in memory and honor of his son Eddy Merle Watson, who died in a farm tractor accident in 1985.

Click the following to watch MerleFest introduction videos.

Carolina in the Fall

Carolina in the Fall is hosted by the internationally renowned three-piece Kruger Brothers and features some of North Carolina's best folk/roots music bands.

Each year, regional food trucks bring their secret recipes to the festival for the public to taste and compete for the "Carolina in the Fall Food Truck Championship" trophy.

In addition to great music, this music and food festival features some of North Carolina's finest cuisine.

Also, local vineyards and craft breweries will be on hand to offer a taste of the region's best beverages.

Carolina in the Fall is held at the following locations.

Click the following to watch introductory videos of Carolina in the Fall.

Brushy Mountain Peach & Heritage Festival

Brushy Mountain Peach & Heritage Festival is a locally grown peach eating event.

You also enjoy handmade crafts, delicious food, and the past and present of Brushy Mountain's fruit growers!

Click the following to watch videos introducing Brushy Mountain Peach & Heritage Festival.

3 Recommended Attractions in Wilkesboro

Here are 3 recommended attractions in Wilkesboro.

W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir

W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir is a dam and reservoir named for former North Carolina Governor and U.S. Senator W. Kerr Scott.

W. Kerr Scott was instrumental in obtaining authorization to build the dam and reservoir.

W. Kerr Scott was also an active farmer and dairy farmer, and was known for his interest in water resource development.

Click the following for introductory videos of W. Kerr Scott Dam and Reservoir.

Wilkes Heritage Museum

Wilkes Heritage Museum is based on a courthouse building.

Wilkes Heritage Jail, Captain Robert Cleveland's 1779 log house, and the late 19th century Finley Law Office have all been restored to their original state.

Wilkes Heritage Museum has a collection of artifacts and images, as well as numerous artifacts and stories, including a moonshine still.

Wilkes County was once known as the "moonshine capital of the world.

Click the following for introductory videos of Wilkes Heritage Museum.

Cub Creek Park

Cub Creek Park offers a variety of recreational features.

Cub Creek Park has beautiful walking trails that are used daily by many visitors.

Cub Creek Park is also a popular family destination for picnicking, walking, fishing, and children playing in the water.

Along the creek, there are quiet places to meditate, read a book, or just relax.

Click the following for introductory videos of Cub Creek Park.


We introduced Wilkesboro, a host town for many events, east of Boone.

Wilkesboro hosts MerleFest, Carolina in the Fall, and Brushy Mountain Peach & Heritage Festival!

Book your travel arrangements here if you would like to learn more about it!