A Year-Round Guide to Franklin and Nantahala

Celebrate the Season Tree-Lighting Ceremony, Sylva — Dec 3 Enjoy live music while watching the tree outside the Jackson County Historic Courthouse light up for the first time this season.

Madison County Championship Rodeo

Celebrate the Season Tree-Lighting Ceremony, Sylva — Dec 3 Enjoy live music while watching the tree outside the Jackson County Historic Courthouse light up for the first time this season.

Rosemary and Goat Cheese Strata

Celebrate the Season Tree-Lighting Ceremony, Sylva — Dec 3 Enjoy live music while watching the tree outside the Jackson County Historic Courthouse light up for the first time this season.

5 Items for Your December To-Do List

Celebrate the Season

Tree-Lighting Ceremony, Sylva — Dec 3

Enjoy live music while watching the tree outside the Jackson County Historic Courthouse light up for the first time this season. Before the ceremony, do a little holiday shopping at the stores downtown.

(828) 586-2719
mainstreetsylva.org

Christmas Open House, Windsor — Dec 5

View 18th- and 19th-century period Christmas decorations and lights on a tour of the historic Hope Mansion and King Bazemore House. Then, head outside to enjoy live holiday music, refreshments, and horse-drawn carriage and wagon rides.

(252) 794-3140
hopeplantation.org

Miracles at Weymouth, Southern Pines — Dec 10-12

Celebrate the holidays during this outdoor festival at Weymouth Center for the Arts & Humanities. Visitors can meet Santa and Mrs. Claus; browse goods from vendors and artisans; indulge in hot chocolate, cookies, and other treats; view decorated window displays; and enjoy a variety of other activities.

(910) 692-6261
weymouthcenter.org

Carolina Christmas Show, Marion — Dec 17-19

A cast of local performers and special guests will gather to produce the fourth season of this Broadway-style show, featuring religious and secular holiday tunes, dancing, and comedy skits.

(855) 222-2849
carolinachristmasshow.com


Shana McDowell sells Mexican, milk chocolate, peppermint, and salted caramel hot chocolate bombs — among other flavors — at the WNC Farmers Market and her storefront bakery. photograph by Tim Robison

Enjoy a Hot Chocolate Bomb

Shana McDowell is the Asheville Cake Lady. photograph by Tim Robison

In the months leading up to Christmas, Shana McDowell — aka the Asheville Cake Lady — makes thousands of hot chocolate bombs with her daughters, Leigha and Lizzy. They meticulously measure homemade cocoa mix and count out every marshmallow that they place into a tempered chocolate ball. As they work, McDowell thinks of the kids who will drink her treats, their faces registering surprise and delight as they watch their dark chocolate raspberry, salted caramel, chai, or classic milk chocolate ball dissolve in warm milk, sending marshmallows floating to the surface. The McDowells know that holiday cheer doesn’t always come in gift-wrapped packages. Sometimes, it comes in mugs. — Chloe Klingstedt

AVL Cake Lady
34 New Leicester Highway
Suite C
Asheville, NC 28806

WNC Farmers Market
570 Brevard Road
Asheville, NC 28806
(828) 412-3388
avl-cake-lady.business.site


To find more festive events taking place across the state this month, visit ourstate.com/carolina-calendar.

This story was published on Nov 23, 2021

Our State Staff

Since 1933, Our State has shared stories about North Carolina with readers both in state and around the world. We celebrate the people and places that make this state great. From the mountains to the coast, we feature North Carolina travel, history, food, and beautiful scenic photography.