Appalachian Heritage Week

Join us in celebrating spring’s return to the mountains!

During the ninth annual Appalachian Heritage Week in April 2019, the college highlighted mountain railroads and other unique aspects of our heritage.

Stay tuned for the 2020 schedule!

2019 Schedule of Events

Monday, April 8

New Opportunity School for Women Open House
1–5 p.m., Stephenson Center for Appalachia

Kick off Appalachian Heritage Week and learn more about the New Opportunity School for Women. The NOSW has has changed the lives of more than 140 women in the past 15 years at Lees-McRae and more than 900 in the 32 years since it was founded in Berea, Kentucky.

Traditional Appalachian Dinner and Music by Little Stony Nighthawks
5 p.m., MacDonald Dining Hall

MacDonald Dining Hall will serve a traditional, Appalachian-themed meal while old-time mountain group, Little Stony Nighthawks, will perform.

Tuesday, April 9

Reader’s Theatre: Transit Gothic with Joshua Simcox ’05  
7 p.m., Evans Auditorium

Join Lees-McRae graduate and novelist Joshua Simcox will lead a readers theater presentation of his play Transit Gothic.

Wednesday, April 10

Mountain Day of Service
9 a.m.–2 p.m., Various Locations

Participate in the 15th annual Mountain Day of Service! Check your Lees-McRae email for additional details regarding the schedule of the day’s events and volunteer opportunities.

Thursday, April 11

Pottery Making with Rob Withrow
10 a.m.–3 p.m., Swank Park

Potter Rob Withrow will demonstrate his pottery-throwing technique. You are invited to get your hands wet and shape clay on the turning wheel. Withrow will also have a selection of his work for sale during the demonstration.

Apple Hill Farm Alpaca Display (postponed from Tuesday)
11:30 a.m.–1:30 p.m., Tate Lawn

Lee Rankin from Matney-based Apple Hill Farm will bring her alpacas to Tate Lawn. Stop by to take photos and interact with the animals!

Dinner and Performance by the Bailey Mountain Cloggers  
5:15–6:15 p.m., MacDonald Dining Hall

Award-winning Mars Hill University Bailey Mountain Cloggers will return to MacDonald Dining Hall to perform.

Friday, April 12

Stay tuned for a rescheduled date!

History of the Virginia Creeper Trail Presented by Dr. Scott Huffard  
2 p.m., Evans Auditorium

Dr. Scott Huffard will present a lecture on the history of the Virginia Creeper Trail, from its time as an important railroad line to its role today as a bike trail.

Saturday, April 13

Virginia Creeper Trail Bike Ride
Departs at 8:30 a.m.

Students are invited to bike the 18-mile Virginia Creeper Trail from Whitetop to Damascus, Virginia on Saturday, April 13. The cost is $20 and participation is limited to 12 students. Fees cover bike and helmet rental, and shuttle from Whitetop to Damascus. The ride is almost entirely downhill and is expected to take about two hours. 

For more information, call Pam Joslin at 828.898.8721 or email Michael Joslin at