Blog :: 05-2017

Summer Festivals in Downtown Asheville are Getting Warmed Up

LEAF Festival Downtown Asheville

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Photo credit: David Simchock

With summer right around the corner, the weather isn’t the only thing heating up in Asheville: festival season is about to kick into high gear. Downtown Asheville boasts a range of festivals to fit just about every interest – and Mosaic Community Lifestyle Realty, an ardent supporter of cultural events that create community, is sponsoring three of the biggest.

Xpand Fest

Asheville Downtown FestivalThe inaugural outdoor event for Asheville-based arts non-profit Xpand Your Vision, Xpand Fest comes to the South Slope June 10. The free street festival, stretching along Banks and Buxton Ave., will feature a variety of vendors, artist booths, live music and other performances. Musical guests include The Broadcast, The Secret B Sides, and Supatight; the local food vendors and special festival brew provided by Bhramari Brewhouse will keep attendees sated. Xpand Fest highlights music and arts as an innovative tool toward inclusive development and believes the arts are a powerful platform for social change. Xpand Fest will include information on the Sustainable Development Goals created at the United Nations Sustainable Development Summit and will highlight local organizations that are making conscious business decisions to better our community. http://xyvision.org/xpand-fest

Shindig on the Green

Celebrating the toe-tapping music and dance traditions of Southern Appalachia, Shindig on the Green kicks off its 51st season July 1 on Roger McGuire Green at Pack Square in downtown Asheville. Drawing scores of locals and visitors alike, the free event, which will run most Saturdays until Sept. 2, features a stage show and informal jam sessions around the park from 7-10 p.m. With concessions available from Okie Dokies Smokehouse and The Hop Ice Cream Café, you can bring your blanket or lawn chair and make an evening of it, listening to long-standing house band The Stoney Creek Boys and other bluegrass and old-time string bands, and watching cloggers from around Western North Carolina.

LEAF Downtown AVL

Pack Square Asheville Festivalsphoto credit: K2 Media

Celebrating local community, this popular family-friendly festival brings Downtown Asheville’s Pack Square alive on Aug. 4 and 5 with three stages featuring a dynamic range of national, regional and local talent. LEAF Downtown, a free event in its third year, starts early afternoon Friday, and on Saturday kicks off at 9 a.m with an all-ages LEAF Art Dash 5K. Festival-goers can enjoy eats from local food trucks while engaging with family and friends and tuning into a rich range of music including old-time, folk, hip hop, Americana, blues, and deep Appalachian. Rounding out the fun are Easel Rider (Asheville’s Mobile Art Lab), costume tents, roaming kids’ artists, puppets, jugglers,face-painting, parades and circus arts. Enrichment activities, cultural exchanges, and civic engagement will also take place at the Voices of Asheville Tent through a series of collaborative community alliances. Festivities wind down when the park closes at 10 p.m.

For more information about our area, or about real estate in Asheville, contact Mike Figura at (828) 337-8190, or email him at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com

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Asheville Elevates the Art of Downtown Living

Pack Square Park Asheville

Asheville is synonymous with lots of things – wide-ranging outdoor activities, a world-class craft beer scene, unparalleled mountain vistas – but urban oasis? Many would be surprised to learn that at the heart of Asheville’s natural beauty sits a compact, livable downtown district brimming with big-city amenities, arts, entertainment, eateries, markets, gyms … the list goes on. Living in downtown Asheville puts all of these conveniences within easy walking distance – making it simple to ditch the car and reduce that carbon footprint!

First Up, Downtown Asheville is Foodtopia

Grove Arcade Market AshevilleThere’s no shortage of dining options in downtown Asheville – everything from brunch hotspots Over Easy CaféEarly Girl Eatery, Tupelo Honey  to bustling brew pubs Wicked Weed Brewery , LAB , Bhramari Brewing Co. to dessert destinations French Broad Chocolates , Karen Donatelli , just to name a few. Feeling like a home-cooked meal? Pop into the locally owned artisan and discount food shop Hopey & Co.’s  downtown location, or make a quick stop at French Broad Food Co-op to pick up all your meal-making necessities. And every Saturday morning, you can visit the Asheville City Market for farm-fresh produce, meat, dairy and local artisan products.

Asheville: Enriching – and Entertaining

Asheville Civic CenterLook for culturally rich programs and entertainment in downtown Asheville, and you won’t be disappointed. Think dance and music performances at the Diana Wortham Theatre; a range of concerts and sporting events at the U.S. Cellular Center/Thomas Wolfe Auditorium ; and all manner of outdoor music and arts fests in Pack Square. Pack Memorial Library also features performances and a range of organized activities for all ages. Itching for an enriching museum experience? Hit the Asheville Art Museum, the Thomas Wolfe Memorial, the Asheville Museum of Science, or the Black Mountain College Museum and Arts Center, or mix in a little play at the Asheville Pinball Museum.

Catch a Movie, See a Play

Getting to the movies to see first-run, art and independent films is easy in downtown Asheville, thanks to the Fine Arts Theatre and the recently opened Grail Moviehouse. When you’re ready to see top-notch plays – or if you’d like to be in one yourself – visit Asheville Community Theatre or the N.C. Stage Company.

Get Fit Right in Downtown

YMCA Downtown AshevilleWalking the streets of downtown can be a workout in itself, but if you’re looking for something a little more challenging, the district boasts a YMCA (which sports two pools, basketball and racquetball courts, along with the traditional wellness center) as well as a Climbmax Climbing gym, with indoor and outdoor facilities.

Places to Park It

Partaking of all Asheville has to offer can be exhausting; luckily, the downtown area is replete with parks for relaxing, meeting up with friends, or simply people-watching. Pack Square, surrounded by the art deco treasures Asheville is famed for, presents the perfect spot for spreading a blanket and soaking in the atmosphere. A bonus for kids is Splashville water park, at the east end of the square. For some fun people-watching (and a little Friday evening drum circle action), head to Pritchard Park. Once you’re recharged – and ready for a rush – grab your wheels and head to Food Lion Skatepark.

For a personally guided tour of downtown Asheville, or for more information on real estate here or anywhere in Asheville, please contact Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.

 

It's Spring! Time to Hit Asheville's Array of Farmers' Markets

Asheville Farmer's Market

Asheville area residents count themselves lucky to call this region home for many reasons, not least of which is its easy access to high-quality local produce and regionally crafted artisanal creations. The farms surrounding Asheville and extending throughout Western North Carolina provide an eclectic offering of both seasonal and year-round farmers’ markets as well as working farm tours. Spring heralds the start of the season, so grab your shopping bags and hit these memorable markets and farms!

West Asheville Tailgate Market·      Asheville City Market (North Market St. between Woodfin St. and Walnut St.; Saturday mornings, now through Dec. 16) – Vendors feature farm-fresh produce, local eggs, meats, farm-raised trout, wild salmon, fresh baked goods, handmade pasta, gourmet cheeses, honey, preserves, salsas, flowers, natural body care products, and artisan crafts. Enjoy live music, cooking demonstrations and food tastings from local chefs. For midweek shopping needs, visit Asheville City Market – South in the center of Biltmore Park Town Square. 

·      East Asheville Tailgate Market (954 Tunnel Road; Fridays 3-6 p.m. now through September) – Everything from fiber arts to herbs to hand-crafted popsicles are available against a backdrop of local music and camaraderie. 

·      North Asheville Tailgate Market (330 University Heights on UNCA’s campus; Saturday mornings now through Nov. 18) – Enjoy a full range of more than 40 vendors of local, sustainably produced meats, eggs, produce, cheeses, breads, plants, prepared foods and crafts. 

Asheville Farmer's Market·      Oakley Farmers Market (Meadow at Highland Brewing Co., 12 Old Charlotte Hwy.; Thursdays 3:30-6:30 p.m. now through Sept. 28.) – This market’s mission is to provide fresh, locally produced foods to its neighbors, “regardless of differences in income, race or social status.” 

·      River Arts District Farmers Market (175 Clingman Ave.; Wednesdays 2-6 p.m.) – Flying Cloud Farm, Spinning Spider Creamery and Asheville Wild Foods are just a few of the vendors you can find here. 

·      West Asheville Tailgate Market (718 Haywood Road; Tuesdays 3:30-6:30 p.m.) – Farmers’ market staples can be found alongside diverse offerings like plant starts for gardens, natural soaps and herbal products, and locally made art and crafts.

·      Western North Carolina Farmers Market (570 Brevard Road; daily 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m., April-October; 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., November-March) – This year-round indoor market features fruits and vegetables, mountain crafts, jams, jellies, preserves, sourwood honey, fresh baked breads, cookies and dozens of other farm-fresh items.

Asheville Area Farms

Asheville Area FarmsIf you’d like to go straight to the source, many working farms in the area are open to the public and offer an array of on-site activities and products for sale. Here’s a small sample of area farms to visit:

·      Hickory Nut Gap Farm in Fairview offers Farm Dinners, HNG Kitchen Classes and Friday Night Barn Dances, just to name a few activities.

·      Franny’s Farm in Leicester hosts everything from summer camps to weddings to the annual Barnaroo Music Festival.

·      Sky Top Orchard stands out among pick-your-own apple and fruit orchards for its ponds with ducks and geese, a barnyard area with sheep, goats, chickens, turkeys, peacocks and more, a bamboo forest to explore, tractor rides and lots of picnic areas.

·      For a fun way to visit sustainable family farms in Western North Carolina, check out Asheville Farm to Table Tours. The themed tours take participants to several farms in a day, providing a unique window into regional farming.

For more information about our area or about real estate in Asheville, please contact Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com  or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.

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Magical Montford, An Asheville Jewel

Historic Montford

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more walkable, picturesque neighborhood in Asheville than the historic district of Montford. Taking a stroll through this visually vibrant neighborhood is to step back in time, to a period of rich architectural influences reflective of the cosmopolitan character of the city at the turn of the 20th century. Every block brings a brilliant array of Victorian, Queen Anne and Arts and Crafts styles combined with Neoclassical, Colonial Revival and castle-like motifs; in addition, popping up are pockets of new green homes, seamlessly tying the present to the past. Joining them is an eclectic mix of restaurants, including Nine Mile (www.ninemileasheville.com), chiesa (www.chiesaavl.com) and Tod’s Tasties (www.todstasties.com).

Montford’s Rich History

Historic Montford AshevilleLocated off Montford Ave., a quick walk to downtown Asheville, and roughly bordered by I-240, I-26 and Broadway Ave., Montford is a National Register Historic District with more than 600 structures, mostly residences, built between 1890 and 1920. Asheville architect and supervising architect of the Biltmore House Richard Sharp Smith produced a number of homes in Montford. Though largely residential, Montford maintained several boarding houses and sanitaria for tuberculosis, mental disorders and other ailments. The neighborhood is home to Riverside Cemetery, 87 acres of rolling hills where authors Thomas Wolfe and O. Henry, as well as Confederate General Robert B. Vance and N.C. Gov. Zebulon Vance, are buried.

Montford at Play

Riverside CemeteryToday, many residences in Montford have found second lives as bed and breakfasts. Grand manors provide peaceful stays while at the same time allowing visitors to easily explore the walkable neighborhood.  

Montford is replete with activities for residents and visitors alike. A stop at the Asheville Visitor’s Center (36 Montford Ave.), at the neighborhood’s edge, can provide you with all the resources and direction necessary for getting the most out of Montford, and Asheville in general. The Montford Recreation Center, in the heart of the neighborhood, features the Montford Climbing Wall, a gym and two multi-purpose rooms. The center is surrounded by the Montford Complex, boasting a playground, tennis court, lighted ball field and the Hazel B. Robinson Amphitheater. The amphitheater is home to the Montford Park Players , N.C.’s longest running Shakespeare festival, which presents free Theatre in the Park under the stars all summer long.

Historic Montford AshevilleMontford is also home to popular annual festivals and tours:

·      Montford Arts and Music Festival  – Held in May, this festival is one of the largest one-day free music and arts festivals in Asheville, with more than 100 vendors of art, crafts and food, and two stages of entertainment.

·      Greek Festival  – Montford’s Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church hosts a fall fest full of traditional dancing, music and, of course, food – fest-goers enjoy a range of Greek specialties – think lamb shank, pastichio, spanakopita and baklava.

·      Montford Holiday Tour of Homes  – Heralding the holiday season, the Tour of Homes gives attendees a first-hand look at the rich architecture the neighborhood is famed for.

For a personally guided tour of the Montford area, or for more information on real estate here or anywhere in Asheville, please contact Mike Figura at Mike@MyMosaicRealty.com or call him anytime at (828) 337-8190.

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