5/24/14

Annual Cherohala Cycling Challenge

On June 14, 2014 for the 14th Annual Cherohala Challenge! It’s a full day of long sweeping corners, majestic views and challenging climbs as riders wind through the Cherokee and Nantahala National Forest. This epic ride winds along the Tail of The Dragon where you’ll snake around 318 curves over an 11-mile span. Merging onto the Cherohala Skyway  the route continuing upward through deeply forested backcountry roads of North Carolina and Tennessee. If you are up to the challenge you’ll climb over 9,000 feet over 115 miles. Rides of 35, 62 and 115 miles will be fully SAG supported with well-stocked rest stops.

The Cherohala Challenge is held each year on the second Saturday in June. Start and finish at the Tellico Plains Visitor’s Center.  For more info: smwbikeclub.org

5/14/14

Memorial Day Weekend Celebration in Coker Creek

 
On the porch of the
Coker Creek Welcome Center and Heritage Gift Shop 
New Highway 68 at the 34 mile marker
May 24th, 25th, and 26th
from 11am to 3pm.

The Gift Shop recently reopened with all new items. Baked goods, snacks, and refreshments will be available. Proceeds benefit the continuation of the Coker Creek Post Office. Live music, artist demonstration, spinning, and book signings are part of the celebration.

Saturday – May 24th
Entertainment:  Wanda Murphy, Mark West, and John Wyatt
Artist: Judy Long
Book Signing:  Margie Carroll – Children’s books
Spinning: De Dockery
Quilts for Kids Open House

Sunday – May 25th
Entertainment:  Kenneth Gay
Artist: Peggy Gay
Book Signing:  Doc Dockery
Spinning:  De Dockery
Quilts for Kids Open House

Memorial Day – May 26th
Entertainment :  Two Dog Ranch Bluegrass Band
Artist: Kathy Crawford
Book Signings: Joe Shumock and Jack Darnell
Spinning:  De Dockery
Whittlers: Ken Dalton, Buddy Hawk, Jack Wrighter

Partial funding is provided through a grant from the Tennessee Arts Commission from the John D. Grubb Fund and Louise G. Sumner Fund for Monroe County of East Tennessee Foundation.

5/1/14

Help Maintain Our Local Trails!

June 7th, 2014, is National Trails Day®, and events are planned across the nation to help maintain hiking and horse trails. With over 200 miles of trails in the Tellico Plains area, Tellico Plains Trails Day needs your help. Come join us!

WHO: Everyone is welcome

WHEN: Saturday June 7, 8am to 5:30pm

WHERE: Meet at picnic area next to the beach at Indian Boundary Campground, off the Cherohala Skyway at Forest Service Road 345

All are welcome for a day of “Paying it Forward” to the Tellico Ranger District of the Cherokee National Forest. Meet at the picnic area next to the beach at Indian Boundary Campground at 8 AM.  Breakfast will be provided by Tellico Grains. Wear long pants, bring a lunch and plenty of water in a day pack. We will break up into crews of 8-10 people to work on a segment of trail somewhere in the local area. Then we will all return to the picnic area for a dinner provided by the Tellico Outpost (pizza) and the Friends of the Cherokee National Forest (burgers, etc). Also upon returning at the end of the day, all participants will receive a free T-shirt commemorating the day. Kids are welcome as well but must be attended by a responsible parent or guardian.

Click for more information

Tellico Plains, A "TRAIL TOWN"
The Tellico Plains and Coker Creek area is blessed with over 200 miles of hiking, backpacking, equestrian, mountain biking and motorized trail bike trails. Tellico Plains is receiving designation as a Trail Town in 2014 by the Southeastern Foot Trails Coalition and the Benton MacKaye Trail Association as an exceptional location to visit for these activities! Online information and resources for local and out-of-town visitors who are using our area trails is now readily available on the Guide to Tellico Plains. Watch for more events, celebrating this important designation!


3/24/14

RAMP FESTIVAL NEAR TELLICO PLAINS

Enjoy a spring day in the countryside as the Ballplay Ruritan Club presents its 4th Annual Ramp Festival on Saturday, April 26 at the Friends Meeting of Ballplay fellowship hall and grounds from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.   There will be live music, vendors, and local community organizations.  

The Ramp Dinner, served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. includes fried potatoes, pinto beans, corn bread, beverage, and dessert.  Adults are $8 and children under 12 are $4 for hotdog and chips, if desired.   Proceeds benefit community projects in the Ballplay area.  Event is “Rain or Shine” with free admission.  Activities are subject to change without notice.  Festival located at 157 Ballplay School Road, Tellico Plains, TN, 1/2 mile west of the intersection of TN Hwy. 360 and Ballplay Road about 10 miles north from the Cherohala Skyway.  Call (423) 295-2434 for festival and vendor information.  Search RAMP FESTIVAL on Facebook for map and updates.

3/19/14

Coker Creek Welcome Ctr Shop Reopens!

12/4/13

Christmas is in the Air!


Several family holiday events are coming up in and around Tellico Plains which you won't want to miss....

This Friday, Dec. 6 2013, join the fun in Coker Creek from 4-8pm. "Christmas On The Mountain" offers old time holiday spirit, with special holiday shopping, refreshments, and fellowship. Coker Creek shops, many of which are along Hwy 68, are decorated and will be serving free holiday snacks. 

Tellico Plains' annual "Candlelight Walk" takes place this Saturday, December 7 2013, from 4-9pm. Surround yourself with holiday spirit and step back in time, with flickering luminarias lining the sidewalks, strolling carolers, horse-drawn wagons, and gingerbread houses. Sponsored by the Town of Tellico Plains and organized by the Cherokee Women's Club, this festive event finds many businesses extending their hours and serving complimentary drinks and snacks. Visit Santa Claus with his elves, making his list of Christmas wishes and posing for photos with the children. You'll enjoy live Christmas music in many shops, the Grinch with 'Whoville' characters, a beautiful Live Nativity presented by one of our local churches, rides in horse-drawn wagons, and bonfires to gather 'round. Select from a huge assortment of delicious homemade Christmas cookies and candies at the popular "Cookie Caper," with confections created by the town's finest bakers, all wrapped in big red-ribboned white boxes - you won't be able to wait until you get home to try some! Also buy some treasures and do some Christmas shopping at the Silent Auction, offering gift certificates from Tellico Plains businesses, gift baskets from local merchants, and much more! Many townspeople don Victorian finery, adding to the nostalgic feel of the evening. Bring your friends and tell your neighbors about this special old-time evening of holiday cheer. Click here to view a video of Candlelight Walk fun.

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10/15/13

Bluegrass, Old Time, & Folk Music, Saturday, October 19th

Old Time Mountain Music
Saturday, October 19, 2013, starting at 4pm

"Two Dog Ranch" is playing music at a fundraiser for the Mt. Vernon Volunteer Fire Department at the Mt. Vernon General Store, 7805 New Hwy. 68, Tellico Plains TN - (formerly Midway Market) at the corner of Hwy. 68 and Reagan Valley Road. Admission is FREE.

"Two Dog Ranch Bluegrass Band" is a group of friends who get together to pick bluegrass, old time, and folk music. The band is made up of local musicians, including Charles Morris (lead guitar & vocals), Art Roush (guitar & vocals), Judy Lavoie (fiddle, banjo & vocals), and Rick Lavoie (guitar & bouzouki).
More info at:
mt-vernon-fd.com

10/8/13

Cherokee National Forest is Open!

Tellico Plains' beautiful neighbor, the Cherokee National Forest, has been minimally impacted by the current Federal government shutdown. Unfortunately, many campers have been disappointed to learn that the large gated campgrounds, like our nearby Indian Boundary campground, are closed. However, individual campsites along the National Forest roads - often called "primitive" sites since they have no facilities - are still available to use on a first-come basis.

The scenic 43-mile Cherohala Skyway is also open, and this is a gorgeous week to take a tour to the higher elevations, where the foliage is beginning to don its fall colors. The Skyway traverses the Cherokee and Nantahala National Forests which are managed by the US Forest Service, Department of Agriculture. Maintenance of resources along the Cherohala Skyway is by the highway departments of the appropriate state and/or the US Forest Service.

Our weather forecast for this week shows sunny daytime highs in the 70s and evening lows in the 50s - ideal! Trails off the Skyway are open for hiking, picnicking, and sightseeing.

The Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center, owned by Monroe County, Tennessee, and located in Tellico Plains at 225 Cherohala Skyway (Hwy 165), provides friendly information, free maps, Skyway driving conditions, and a "not for profit" gift shop. Picnic tables and spotless restrooms are available. The friendly staff will welcome you with important Skyway and area information!

The Cherohala Skyway Visitor Center is a product of a grant from the National Scenic Byway program. The visitor center was opened in September 2003 and is owned by Monroe County, Tennessee. The gift shop in the visitor center is a “not-for-profit” gift shop. Maintenance of resources along the Cherohala Skyway is by the highway departments of the appropriate state and/or the US Forest Service. The Cherokee and Nantahala National Forest through which the Cherohala Skyway traverses are managed by the US Forest Service, Department of Agriculture. Download the Online Skyway Brochure & Maps:
Cherohala Online Brochure

10/4/13

Veterans' Monument Needs Your Help

The Monroe County Veterans' Monument, a landmark at one corner of Tellico Plains Town Square, has been in dire need of refurbishment, to revive it as a fitting memorial to our Veterans. A major fundraising drive is underway, with a goal of $22,000 for the monument reconstruction and maintenance. Your help is needed.

A Veterans' Monument Committee, comprised of Mike Atkins, Lawrence Harris, Ray Tallent, and Helen Cochran, was created last fall. Since then, many significant renovations have been made:
- Installation of a new copper-colored standing seam roof
- Repair of the electrical system and interior lights
- Open pass-through and wheelchair accessible portal modifications
- Completion of soffits and trim

The biggest remaining project is the replacement of the existing stone nameplates with new ones sized to properly fit the existing structure. This is the most expensive item in the renovations, and funds are desperately needed. These plates will be replaced in phases, as funds permit. With additional funds some fascia trim will be added to accent the architecture, and the Town will retain any leftover funds as a perpetual monument maintenance fund.

Students at Tellico Plains High School have been enlisted to assist in creating a computer database. This will include all the existing Veterans' names on the monument, and will allow the addition of new names in the future. This database will also serve as a useful tool for family members researching their Tellico Plains relatives. An application to include the name of a Monroe County resident who is a veteran on the monument (or to correct an existing name) are available at Tellico Plains City Hall, and can also be downloaded at:
http://tellico-plains.com/town/monument.html

PLEASE HELP!

To donate to the Monroe County Veterans' Monument Refurbishment, visit any bank within the Town of Tellico Plains. You can also donate online, at
http://tellico-plains.com/town/monument.html
These funds will be held in an account in the name of the Town of Tellico Plains for the sole purpose of monument reconstruction.

Tellico Plains Post #240 of the American Legion created and dedicated the brick monument in May, 2001, on land donated by the Town of Tellico Plains. The Legion solicited subscriptions and donations for individual names to be included on the monument's inscribed stone plaques, and for construction and maintenance costs.

Renovations have begun, including the installation of a new copper-colored standing seam roof.

After only a few years, weather damage caused the exposed structure to deteriorate. A volunteer group, including some members of the local Legion Post, some members of the Tellico Chamber of Commerce, and other local citizens, banded together to reconstruct the monument in 2007. Members of the non-profit organization Rolling Thunder, a group dedicated to accountability and recognition of the Prisoners Of War - Missing In Action (POW/MIA) of all wars, were also involved. Additional donations of materials and money were solicited to fund the reconstruction. Unfortunately, funds ran out before the work was completed, the local American Legion Post disbanded, and the volunteer group dissolved. The monument has remained in its incomplete state since then.



Your support for this community project is appreciated!

10/2/13

Mt. Vernon Volunteer Fire Department is "Raising the Roof"

Mix "fun" with "fundraising" on Saturday, October 19th, as the Mt. Vernon Volunteer Fire Department presents an evening of food and family entertainment. From 4 to 8pm, at the Mt. Vernon General Store (formerly Midway Market) at the corner of 7805 New Hwy. 68 and Reagan Valley Road in Tellico Plains, children will enjoy the bounce house and face painting. Come see who bravely volunteers to be the victim of the dunk tank! Food and beverages for sale will include hot dogs and chili, and homebaked goodies will also be for sale. Two Dog Ranch Bluegrass Band will provide live old-timey and bluegrass music. Come by and meet your local volunteer firefighters and fellow Mt. Vernon community residents.

Proceeds from this event will be used to 'raze' and to 'raise' the roof - the Mt. Vernon Fire Station, located at 700 Old State Road in Tellico Plains, is in dire need of a new roof. The ceiling in the donated building has been leaking for too long, filling barrels with rainwater. Two layers of old roofing must be removed and a new roof installed, at an estimated cost of $30,000. The Fire Department is comprised of a small hard-working crew of volunteer firefighters, dedicated to protecting their community while forced to operate with very limited funds. If you can't join the fun on October 19th, please donate to the Mt. Vernon Volunteer Fire Department on their website:
mt-vernon-fd.com
Your support is appreciated.
Download the Raise the Roof flyer

9/23/13

Win the Christmas Star Quilt & Pillow!


Once again, the Cherokee Women's Club has merged the remarkable talents of many local quilters to design and create a fabulous Opportunity quilt, and raffle tickets are now on sale. This year's quilt has a boldly colorful Christmas theme, measures 91" x 91" (queen size), and has added washable jewels to add sparkle to trees and other motifs in the quilt blocks. A coordinated pillow beautifully accents the quilt. The quilt's reverse side has a center band of quilt blocks on a red background. A star motif is featured for the quilt stitching, provided by Cathy's Cottage Quilting.


Profits from the raffle will be used for local scholarships, library needs, beautification of Tellico Plains, and other beneficial projects of the Cherokee Women's Club.

Raffle tickets are $1 each or $5 for 6 and can be purchased at Citizen's National Bank in Tellico Plains and at the Tellico Art Center on Scott St. View the quilt and buy raffle tickets at the upcoming Coker Creek Gold Festival. For more info on purchasing tickets, email: skellyf43@yahoo.com and put "quilt" in the subject line.

Drawing for the winner will be December 9, 2013, and the quilt will be shipped to any out of town winner in time for Christmas for their decorations or to use as a gift.

9/6/13

Scarecrows in Tellico Plains!

The Monroe County Farmers Market, which is open on Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday mornings in Tellico Plains, wants to dress up the town with Scarecrows. They are sponsoring a Scarecrow Contest, encouraging handmade entries in a children's division (up to age 12) and adults division (age 13 and over). Entries can be delivered to the Farmers Market, which is located between the Library and the Visitors Center, on Oct. 4th or 5th, and will be on display for locals to vote for their favorites for one week.

For more info, tips on creating your own scarecrow, and entry forms, visit the Farmers Market and/or check their facebook page.

The Farmers Market is hoping the entire town will participate by displaying scarecrows in front of homes and businesses!

7/3/13

Summer Cool Down

Indian Boundary Lake, in the Cherokee National Forest just outside Tellico Plains, is the ideal spot for cooling off and relaxing on a hot summer day. Follow the Cherohala Skyway east about 15 miles, and follow the signs to the Beach. At the beach there is plenty of free parking, a massive covered pavilion with picnic tables, rest rooms, volleyball courts, and a fishing pier.

Indian Boundary also has a fabulous 87-site campground, camp store, and group camping area, which make the ideal headquarters for exploring the surrounding Cherokee National Forest. There are many places to fish in the Lake's 96 acres of waters, boat ramp, a well-maintained 3.2 mile trail surrounds the lake and is great for walking, jogging, bike rides, and wildflower viewing, and benches overlooking the lake so you can sit and enjoy the peacefulness.

Getting There:
GPS Info. (Latitude, Longitude):
35.40167, -84.10722
35°24'6"N, 84°6'26"W

From I-75 at Sweetwater, Tennessee, take State Route 68 to Tellico Plains.

From Highway 68 in Tellico Plains, take Highway 165 (Cherohala Skyway) east for 16 miles. Turn left onto Forest Development Road 345 and travel 2 miles to the entrance. Follow the signs from there. Have fun!

5/23/13

Celebrate Memorial Day Weekend

Join the fun at Coker Creek's Memorial Weekend Celebration

May 25th thru Memorial Day May 27th
10 a.m. until 4 p.m.

The Coker Creek Heritage Group is sponsoring this event which will be located at the:

Coker Creek Welcome Center
Hwy 68 at the 34 mile marker

Entertainment:
Saturday – Rick and Judy Lavoie, Art Roush, and Charles Morris
Sunday – Kenneth Gay
Monday, Memorial Day - Wanda Murphy, John Wyatt, and Mark West
Local Artisans will be demonstrating

Watch for Coker Creek celebrations during other holiday weekends this summer and other area activities on the Guide to Tellico Plains' calendar of events.