To be completely honest, we hadn't heard of Burnsville NC until recently and only knew that it was a small town north of Asheville somewhere, and that's about it. We had no idea that it had so much history, a quaint downtown with a Hallmark-like town square, a thriving arts community, and easy access to some of the most awesome outdoor adventures available in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
As we began to learn more about this interesting small mountain town, we decided we just had to visit. Explore Burnsville helped us plan lots of great activities that really showcased what Burnsville NC has to offer, and we loved every minute of it.
Join us, as we spend a long weekend in one of our new favorite mountain towns, Burnsville NC.
Disclosure: We were invited by the Burnsville NC Chamber of Commerce and meals and activities were complimentary; however, all opinions, information, and photos are our own and we were not asked in any way to influence our thoughts, comments, or the content of this article. All opinions are our own - We believe in putting our readers first.
Travel and Arrival - Friday
Burnsville NC is located about 30 minutes northeast of Asheville NC and about an hour and 20 minutes from our home in Waynesville NC. Fortunately, there were no traffic issues, and the drive really isn't bad, and pretty scenic as highway drives go.
We arrived at Terrell House Bed & Breakfast just outside of Burnsville NC around 4:00pm for check-in.
Terrell House Bed & Breakfast - Our Home for the Weekend
One of the top-rated places to stay in Burnsville is Terrell House Bed & Breakfast and this was our home for the weekend. We were booked in "Sandi's Room", one of the larger rooms in the house, equipped with a queen size bed, en-suite bathroom and shower, and a couch.
As we arrived in Burnsville and drove up the residential road, we immediately noticed the large colonial home in the distance. Around the home was a large yard area, trees along the back side, and a parking area. We pulled in and parked and immediately noticed the nice outdoor areas and flower gardens.
We walked up to the large front porch and rang the doorbell as requested by the sign. Mike, one of the Innkeepers answered and welcomed us in. He gave us a full tour of the main floor of the home.
On the main floor is a main common area, which you enter into, a small study to the left, and the main dining area to the right rear. The whole house is decorated in a historic style that matches the home well. We were also told there were complimentary cold drinks and coffee available for whenever we would like them in the dining area.
Mike took us up to our room gave us the keys, and told us how to reach him if needed. The Innkeepers, Su and Mike live on the rear portion of the large home.
We grabbed our bags from our Jeep, and Su pulled up as we were going in. We enjoyed meeting and talking with them both.
Sandi's Room at the Terrell House
Our room, Sandi's Room, was located at the front left of the house, and overall very spacious for a Bed & Breakfast. We had a very tall queen-sized bed, a large couch, some chairs, and dressers in the green and flowers decorated room. In the corner was a small bathroom with a shower (no tub), toilet, and sink.
The room was very clean, with plenty of windows, and there was an AC unit just for the room. Overall very nice, and the bed seemed very cozy with lots of blankets and pillows.
We were not able to stay long, as we had a class scheduled for 4:30 pm at a local glass studio.
Glass Art at Hearth Glass and Gallery
Hearth Glass and Gallery was literally five minutes down the road and located in an old historic service station building. The lobby area of the service station was the gallery, and the garage area was the working studio.
We were greeted by owner and artist Keikichi Littleton. She gave us a bit of an introduction to the studio and gallery and told us a little about some of the artists featured in the gallery, including their own.
Keikichi told us that we would be going into the studio and that we would be working with live glass. Turning it, coloring it, and forming it, with some help of course. We were even able to select what we would be making. We had a choice of a vase, drinking cup, or Christmas ornament. Jenn chose a vase and I chose a drinking glass.
We headed out into the studio where we met Tadayoshi Littleton (who goes by Yoshi) and Miguel Artiz, our trainers for the session. Yoshi and Keikichi are brother and sister.
It turns out, their Grandfather is Harvey K. Littleton, well known as the father of the Studio Glass Movement in the United States. Keikichi and Yoshi are continuing their Grandfather's legacy by creating glass art and teaching others.
Yoshi and Miguel took us through the whole process of creating simple glass art and even allowed us to do portions of it. We pulled the hot melted glass from the furnace, turned it, colored it, and then formed it to create our glass and vase.
The process was amazing ... and well, pretty hot too. Yoshi and Miguel were both incredibly skilled at their trade and very patient answering questions and guiding us.
Taking the glass and creating our own glass art was an amazing process and one that we won't forget. We learned a new appreciation that day for glass artists and the true talent and skill that goes into creating even the most simple of glass items.
Here's the vase and drinking cup we made - They certainly won't win any awards, but they are functional, and serve as a reminder of our experience!
Dinner at the Garden Deli
After our glass art class, we were hungry. We had dinner at the Garden Deli, one of the oldest restaurants in Burnsville opening in 1987. Garden Deli is located right off the town square in downtown Burnsville.
The Garden Deli is almost hidden behind a number of large shrubs, which seems a little odd at first, but once you enter, you realize these shrubs not only add to the "Garden" effect but also provide some nice shade and privacy from the busy town square area.
Garden Deli provides both indoor and outdoor seating, but when we were there for dinner, the outdoor area appeared closed, so we sat inside. We were greeted by our server Kayleigh who was very attentive and helped us choose what to order - Thanks, Kayleigh!
We started with the Southwest Spring rolls, which were really good and spicy, but not too hot. Jenn ordered the special lobster roll, which we heard was a Chef's specialty and I ordered the Greek Chicken.
All the food was excellent and Jenn felt the lobster roll was the best she's ever had, which is saying a lot - I mean look at that huge piece of claw meat!
After Dinner Drinks at Roland's Bar at the NuWray Hotel
After finishing up our fantastic dinner at Garden Deli, we walked across the town square to the historic NuWray Hotel.
We had seen the old historic hotel driving through town earlier in the day and I had watched a few YouTube videos about it prior to our trip. The NuWray, its history, and its strong ties to the town were fascinating.
We were hoping to get a chance to see the hotel and get more information about it. We were excited when we realized that due to some construction at the main entrance to Roland's (behind the hotel), we would actually get to walk through the hotel to reach Roland's that evening.
Little did we know that we would get a full tour later in the evening ... but we'll come back to that.
Roland's Bar is the old smokehouse for the NuWray Hotel. The original wood has been retained and the building repurposed into a very nice bar. The area around Rolands is all super nice decking and patios where friends and family can hang out, relax and enjoy a drink.
Why call it Roland's? Will Roland was the chef at the NuWray for more than 40 years during the early 1900s. Will perfected the method of smoking and curing hams right there in the smokehouse that is now called Rolands.
The bar was named Roland's as a way of honoring Will's contributions to the culinary traditions of the NuWray Hotel.
When you sit at the bar or walk up to order a drink, look at the beams and ceiling, they are original and still charred from age-old smoke. It's hard to believe that thousands of hams were smoked right there in the main bar building for so many years.
We ordered a few drinks and sat at the bar. A few minutes later, a couple walked up and introduced themselves as the owners of the Roland's and the NuWray Hotel.
The NuWray Hotel
James and Amanda have been doing renovations on historic buildings for a while now, but the NuWray Hotel is their biggest project to date. We told them how exciting it was to be able to walk through the old hotel as we entered, and that we had been hoping we could get a peak inside. They smiled, looked at us, and said "Would you like to take a tour and see what we're doing?".
Um, yes, please!
Of course, we jumped at the opportunity and followed James and Amanda back into the hotel. The tour was an amazing walk through the history of not only the NuWray itself but the town of Burnsville. The hotel played a significant role in the town's history and development.
We explored the main floor, and James and Amanda told us about the hotel's history and the three different phases of expansion that were done over the years. They pointed out how the construction of each phase was done differently, and pointed out the various challenges they were having to work through.
Most of the interior of the hotel has been stripped down to bare wood. Due to the hotel's age, many areas were sagged, and large iron support beams have been placed into the hotel to level it out and support it.
Walking through, and seeing the stripped walls, ceilings, and floors, you could literally see the different eras of wood used and differences in construction techniques through the different periods. Some of the original wood was literally hand-cut!
The main floor will be the main lobby and rooms. The second floor the restaurant and more rooms, and the third floor which hadn't been open in many many years, will be reopened as well with rooms. The nicest rooms will be on the second floor towards the back of the hotel and will have balconies overlooking the yard area where Roland's Bar is located. We were able to walk through those as well.
The original hotel had shared bathrooms, but all of the renovated rooms will have their own private bathrooms. The basement will be a full bar and wine cellar. We were even able to see the famous "Elvis Room", where Elvis Presley once stayed, at least according to locals.
We captured lots of video of our visit, and with permission from the owners, we'll feature in our upcoming Burnsville video on our YouTube channel.
After touring the hotel, we hung out at Roland's for a while, then headed back to Terrell House for some sleep. It had been a busy day and another very busy day was planned for tomorrow.
Day 1 - Saturday
We slept well that night, and Terrell House Bed & Breakfast was very quiet and the AC kept the room nice and cool. We awoke, showered, dressed, and headed downstairs to the dining area for breakfast.
A few guests were already gathering at the breakfast table and drinking coffee when we came down to the dining area.
We introduced ourselves, grabbed some coffee, and had a seat. Our breakfast was soon served by our Innkeepers within a few minutes. The short wait gave us time to talk to and get to know the other guests.
Breakfast that morning was fresh fruit, with french toast and chicken sausage. All very good. We excused ourselves, grabbed our bags, and headed out for our Burnsville NC adventures for the day.
Our first stop was at High Country Ceramic Arts for Pottery Demo.
Burnsville NC is a hot spot for artists, and a large number of very talented artists live in and around the town of Burnsville. As a result, there are a number of studios that offer classes and studio rentals.
Pottery Demo at High Country Ceramic Arts
High Country Ceramic Arts is one of them and owned and operated by Linda Powell, a very talented and friendly area artist.
As we arrived, we weren't really sure what to expect, as visiting art studios was still a bit new to us. We were not aware that the studios weren't just for specific artists, but that some could be shared and rented as well. High Country Ceramic Arts is one of those studios.
Linda introduced herself and gave us a full tour of High Country Ceramic Arts. We browsed the gallery full of ceramic art from many different area artists. The amount of talent and beautiful art available for purchase was simply amazing.
Linda then showed us around the studio itself, showing us the ovens for baking, how they make the different glazes (yes they are made in-house), and then took us out into the live studio area where she gave us a demo of "throwing clay", which is the process of taking raw clay, and turning it on the wheel to create ceramic art.
We really enjoyed talking to, watching, and learning from Linda as she passionately shared her business and art experience with us!
We left with a new appreciation for ceramic art, and honestly an interest in learning more.
Exploring Downtown Burnsville
Downtown Burnsville was just a couple of minutes away. We were looking forward to exploring the shops and cafes to see everything that was offered.
We parked near the town square and just started walking around. For such a small town, the downtown area was a busy place, with lots of people walking around and cars buzzing by.
Yancey County Farmer's Market
We arrived early enough to explore the Yancey County Farmer's Market which is currently located just off the town square and next to the town hall. The market had lots of vendors offering food items, flowers, produce, arts and crafts, and more.
We really enjoyed browsing all of the different vendor's goods and talking with them. We ended up purchasing some homemade soaps and a few other items. While not large, the market was quaint and very nice.
At the entrance, two musicians played folk music with a guitar and banjo. They were really good and added to the small-town mountain charm.
Across the street in the park, there were a number of activities set up for children and families, including square dancing. The whole scene was like being in a classic movie.
Shopping and more in Downtown Burnsville
The downtown area has a number of different merchants that sell antiques, gifts, clothing, and much more. There are even some really unique specialty shops selling outdoor gear, soaps, natural and healing products, and more.
We also discovered an ice cream shop and a coffee shop that offered some great baked items as well.
The park in the town square is also really nice, offering large shade trees and benches to sit under. There is a monument and statue in the center for Otway Burns, whom Burnsville is named after.
The Visitor Center is also downtown, and not only has public restrooms, but lots of great information on the town and things to do in the area.
Just up from the Visitor Center is TRAC (Toe River Arts Council) which connects artists with the community. This is definitely a great place to visit to see and learn more about all of the art and artists in and around Burnsville.
Speaking of art, throughout the downtown area are a number of murals and quilt art displays on the sides of buildings. We really enjoyed finding and viewing these.
Downtown Burnsville is a beautiful and historic downtown area, full of great shops to explore and things to see and do. Exploring the historic downtown was one of our favorite parts of our visit to Burnsville.
Lunch at Pig and Grits with the Chamber Director
After a busy morning of exploring downtown Burnsville, it was time to grab some local BBQ. No small mountain town in NC is complete without a local BBQ restaurant and we love to try them out. Pig and Grits in Burnsville is excellent!
They are located just outside of downtown Burnsville at 620 W Main St. They serve breakfast and lunch.
We had the wonderful opportunity to enjoy lunch with Christy Wood, the Executive Director of the Burnsville-Yancey Chamber of Commerce.
Christy provided us with lots of helpful information on Burnsville, how they are growing, and their plans for the future of Burnsville.
We really enjoyed meeting and talking with Christy, especially over the wonderful BBQ at Pig and Grits. We even got the meet the owner of Pig and Grits, who was very proud of his restaurant and the food served.
From talking with the owner, we learned that all of their meats are smoked in-house, just using a simple smoking process. They offer pork, brisket, ribs, smoked turkey, and smoked chicken.
We ordered their "Pigtails" (house chips) to start with. For our main entrees, we ordered the smoked turkey with mac and cheese and cole slaw, and pulled pork with a side salad. Christy and her friend got an excellent-looking Sante Fe Salad.
Pig and Grits has excellent BBQ and lots of other options on the menu as well, including healthy options, which we really appreciated. They even have a great selection of items for kids as well. Service was great and the restaurant was very clean with a friendly "down home" style atmosphere.
Pig and Grits is definitely a restaurant you'll want to visit when visiting Burnsville NC.
With full bellies and lots of information on Burnsville NC, we headed out to find two nearby waterfalls.
Hiking to Setrock Creek Falls
While there are a number of pretty waterfalls not far from Burnsville, there are two in particular that are fairly close to town and conveniently close to each other as well. Both are short and moderate hikes.
The first waterfall we visited was Setrock Creek Falls. The trailhead to Setrock Creek Falls is about 30 minutes from Burnsville at the base of Mount Michell and is located just inside the entrance to Black Mountain Campground. The falls are listed in both Google and Apple Maps.
The hike out to this 75-foot-tall waterfall is 0.75 miles (1.5 miles roundtrip) and is an easy-to-moderate hike. The waterfall itself isn't stunning, but it is pretty and worth the hike. Unfortunately, there is some debris around the base of the waterfall, making it challenging to get good photos.
We really enjoyed the hike and waterfall. We had it pretty much to ourselves, as thunderstorms were moving in as we reached the falls. We expected to get wet, but fortunately, the rain held off until we returned back to our Jeep.
Hiking to Roaring Fork Falls
We actually passed the access road to the Roaring Fork Falls trailhead on our way to Setrock Creek Falls. The trailhead is at the end of the road to Busick Work Center, just off Highway 80 - There are clear signs showing where to turn.
You'll drive down to the end to a small parking, and the trailhead will be to your right and up a hill. The trail is an old logging road that was actually used for the construction of the nearby Blue Ridge Parkway.
The hike out is easy to moderate and about 1.5 miles roundtrip.
As we pulled into the parking area, it began to pour. We almost left, but decided to wait it out a little longer, and I'm so glad we did because Roaring Fork Falls turned out to be one of the most beautiful waterfalls we've visited in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Given it had just rained as well, the flow was pretty strong.
Roaring Fork Falls is definitely a waterfall you'll want to visit and take photos of. The setting and falls are simply gorgeous.
Now, what made this hike more interesting was that I (Larry) forgot my hiking boots.
For the first waterfall that wasn't a big deal, but for the second, since it had rained, my poor Hey Dudes) my favorite travel shoes) got soaked. But honestly, they did pretty well considering! But it definitely added to the adventure and gave us some good laughs.
Dinner at Snap Dragon Cafe
We ran back to Terrell House Bed & Breakfast, cleaned up and changed into some dry clothes, and headed into town to grab some dinner at Snap Dragon Cafe ... it started raining again on the way.
The Snap Dragon Cafe is located right next to the Garden Deli and is a bit smaller and with mostly outdoor seating. Fortunately, with the rain, we were able to get a table inside.
The Snap Dragon is owned by the same owners as the Garden Deli but has a different menu with very little overlap.
We really liked the open environment, with nearly a seamless transition from indoor to outdoor seating. We sat down and were promptly greeted by our server who was super friendly, gave us lots of recommendations, and was very much on top of his game. We were impressed.
From various locals, we heard that the best thing on the menu was the burger and they offer a few different burger varieties. We started off by trying a couple of the drink specials they had that evening, which were amazing. We also ordered some fried pickles to snack on while looking over the menus.
For entrees, we ordered the Spicy Island Burger and Top Sail Tacos. Both were delicious and large portions as well. We couldn't eat it all ... at least not when saving for dessert.
They had key lime pie and a lava cake. We couldn't resist, and they were fantastic!
We really enjoyed The Snap Dragon Cafe - We loved the environment, the staff, and the food. Very casual, friendly, and relaxed. Our kind of place, and our favorite restaurant in Burnsville.
Stargazing at Bare Dark Sky Observatory
Our dinner wrapped up late, and we had just enough time to make it over to the Observatory for the Bare Dark Sky event, although, with the rain, we were expecting it to be canceled.
Yes, I said Observatory - About 20 minutes outside of Burnsville and up a curvy back mountain road at the top of a mountain are both the Bare Dark Sky Observatory and Arthur Planetarium.
Our drive there was pretty "exciting", as we had never been there before, the roads were dark and curvy, and it was absolutely pouring the entire time. But we made it and pulled into the entry road where signs pointed us to the Planetarium and not the Observatory. My fears were confirmed.
We walked in, introduced ourselves and they told us the Observatory wasn't going to be an option for the evening due to the weather. We were not surprised. But they had a plan B, the Planetarium.
They were going to set the Planetarium up as if we were looking at the sky at the Observatory, so we could virtually see the skies.
We headed back into the Planetarium where two seating options were available, regular reclining theater seats or "zero-gravity" seats that were like lawn chairs. The zero-gravity chairs fully recline so you are facing directly up. We sat in the zero-gravity chairs.
The show began with an intro movie that showed the importance of cutting back on lights at night and how artificial light negatively impacts the earth and wildlife. It was very interesting and insightful.
We were then shown the night sky as if we were standing outside and the staff highlighted a number of different stars, planets, and constellations for us. We then traveled out lightyears to a few notable nebulas and star formations so we could see them up close using images from the new James Webb telescope.
The whole presentation was really well done and the staff really knew what they were talking about. We wrapped up about midnight and headed back to Terrell House for some much-needed rest. We were exhausted.
Day 2 - Sunday
We woke up early again on Sunday for breakfast and to prepare for another busy day exploring Burnsville.
Breakfast at Terrell House Bed & Breakfast that morning was fresh fruit, breakfast casserole, taters, and sausage.
Again it was very good and filling. We needed a good hearty breakfast in preparation for the hiking we would be doing at Mount Mitchell State Park, our next adventure destination.
Most of the guests we had been talking with that morning were leaving, so we said our goodbyes and headed out.
Mount Mitchell State Park
The drive will take you along beautiful Highway 80, and up onto the gorgeous Blue Ridge Parkway, providing stunning views nearly the entire way. It was a beautiful drive, so we took our time and enjoyed the ride.
The entry road up to the summit parking area is full of numerous overlooks and long-distance views, that you'll definitely want to stop at to enjoy.
We arrived at the summit parking area and it was all fogged in. We hiked up the trail to the summit but were pretty quickly sidetracked by the beautiful and foggy forest along the sides of the trail. The sun was coming up above the fog and shining through a little, making for a gorgeous setting and the types of shots we as photographers dream of.
We eventually pulled ourselves away and made it to the summit. We stopped to pay our respects at the grave of Reverend Elisha Mitchell who died on the mountain in 1857. He is credited with establishing Mount Mitchell as the highest peak east of the Rockies.
Behind the grave is the observation tower at the top, which provides stunning and long-range 360-degree views on a clear day. It was anything but a clear day for us. We had nothing but fog.
We headed back down the trail to walk along the Nature Trail for a bit as the combination of fog and sunlight was magical.
Walking the Nature Trail from the lower portion of the parking area is like stepping into another world. For those of you that are familiar with Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien, the setting will be familiar. We felt like we were stepping into Fangorn forest, and waiting for Ents to speak to us.
Here are just a few photos we captured while there.
If you do anything at Mount Mitchell, make sure you walk the Nature Trail some. It's a gorgeous combination of wood colors and greens, with tons of moss, small mushrooms, ferns, and small plant life.
Jenn finally had to pull me away, as minutes became hours as we explored and photographed the forest. We were running late and we needed to be back in Burnsville to grab lunch and return to the Planetarium for a movie.
Lunch at Appalachian Java
We grabbed lunch at Appalachian Java, along with some coffee.
Appalachian Java in downtown Burnsville has a variety of very good sandwiches and salads. Our normal go-to for lunch is salads, but we went with sandwiches this time, given the amount of calories we burned off at Mount Mitchell.
Deciding on what to order from the 15 or so different sandwiches they offered was tough. They even offer gourmet Peanut Butter and Jelly, which I resisted, but it sure did sound good. We ended up going with more healthy options.
We ordered the Turkey Press, which is Turkey, gouda cheese, Roma tomato, onion, spinach, and chipotle mayonnaise on a baguette. We also ordered the App Stacker which is Ham, turkey, mixed cheddar cheese, bacon, tomato, spinach, and Vidalia onion sauce on sourdough bread.
Our plan was to share, with each getting half.
They were busy, and the wait for food was about 30 minutes. So while they made our food, we made a run back to Terrell House Bed & Breakfast to change into some fresh clean clothes.
Our food was ready when we returned, and we sat outside enjoying our food, and the sights and sounds of quaint downtown Burnsville.
Movie at Arthur Planetarium
We drove back to the Arthur Planetarium. The stunning weather provided a much easier and more scenic drive than our rainy nighttime drive before.
During our visit the prior evening, I had heard that the movie we would be seeing today was Destination Mars, which I was really looking forward to seeing.
We sat down in the Planetarium, this time electing for the regular theater seats. The movie soon started, but I was a little disappointed as it wasn't Destination Mars, but Flight of the Butterflies, a story of a scientist fascinated by the migration of Monarch Butterflies and determined to find where they migrated to.
Turns out, I really enjoyed it, especially on the large surrounding Planetarium screen.
The visuals were incredible and the story was very interesting. Let's just say that Jenn and I both have a new respect for Butterflies. We definitely recommend that you make the Planetarium part of your visit when in Burnsville.
If you notice in the photo above of the Planetarium, it has honey bees on the side. There is a very interesting story behind the beautiful and detailed murals.
Matthew Willey began an effort called Good of the Hive, where he painted murals of 50,000 bees worldwide. In October 2021, he painted the exterior of the Arthur Planetarium. His mission to promote honeybee health and awareness worldwide. 50,000 is the number of bees needed for a healthy hive. You can visit the Planetarium, and see his efforts inside and outside.
We had a little time to kill before dinner, especially since we had such a late lunch, so we drove around some of the backgrounds around the Planetarium. The surrounding mountains were beautiful, and we found some great views, including views of Mount Mitchell in the distance.
Dinner at Homeplace Beer Company
The brewery and Pizza restaurant was larger than we expected. They offer both indoor and outdoor seating.
Outdoor seating is both on the outdoor covered deck and down on the property around the stage where they have special events and live music.
We ordered some drinks and food and sat outside on the covered deck, which was really nice. I ordered the seasonal Summer Lager and Jenn a glass of wine (she's not a beer fan).
We ordered the wood-fired Jalapeno poppers as a starter and a Pepperoni pizza to share for our entree.
The Summer Lager was really cold and had a light refreshing flavor. A cold beer was just what the doctor ordered, as they say.
Our Jalapeno poppers soon arrived. We liked the smoky wood-fired flavor, but to be honest, the Jalapenos were a little too raw for us. They were good, but not as good as we had hoped.
Our pizza came out about 15 minutes later, which was fine, as we were enjoying just sitting and relaxing after a busy day of activities. The pizza was excellent, delivered to our table hot, with the crust perfectly cooked and the pepperoni nice and crispy.
Homeplace Brewery was one of our favorite places, and while not gourmet food, the food is really good for Brewery-style food. Homeplace is just a great place to hang out, relax, eat some good pizza, and enjoy a nice and cold local brew.
We hung out until they did the last call, which was honestly pretty entertaining. They have a huge dinner bell they ring while yelling "Last Call"!
Day 3 - Monday
We woke fairly early, as we had to pack and get everything loaded up. We were checking out of Terrell House Bed & Breakfast that morning and had a fairly early appointment at another local Pottery Studio for a demonstration.
The breakfast table that morning was pretty empty, with just one other couple that we had already met.
Everyone else had left the day before. Breakfast that morning was the best so far - I was so hungry, we forgot to take photos and I honestly don't recall exactly what it was, but I think it was a lemon blueberry breakfast cake with sausage, and it was absolutely fantastic.
We said our goodbyes to Su and Mike, the Innkeepers, and thanked them for everything. They were truly wonderful hosts and just super nice folks.
Seriously, if you are visiting Burnsville, stay with them, you won't regret it.
Pottery Demo at Page Pottery
They are located at 138 Dandelion Ln, not far off Highway 19. We looked forward to learning more about Pottery but didn't realize that meeting the Pages and seeing their home studio would become one of our favorite activities of our weekend visit.
Their home studio is located on a mountainside and provides a pretty view of the surrounding mountains. Their home is beautifully landscaped. The gallery and studio are in their basement.
We had been told before visiting that JR and Kristen were some of the most talented and successful pottery craftspeople in the area.
We were soon greeted in the driveway by JR and Kristen and their dog Foxy. The Potters are young, energetic, and incredibly positive. We immediately felt welcome.
Their gallery is full of gorgeous and unique pottery and mixed media items on display and for sale. As we browsed the gallery, they talked to us about their history, how they met, and how their pottery business had grown over the years. In fact, they are so popular, they have trouble keeping up with demand.
Turns out, they both studied pottery at Haywood Community, near our home in Waynesville NC, where they met. JR even lived across the valley from us. Small world.
They showed us around the gallery and studio and walked us through the process of creating their ceramic art. They demonstrated how they "sling mud" on the throwing wheel, form handles for mugs and pitchers, glaze their pottery, and bake it. Like other area potters, their glaze is their own and unique to their style.
JR even gave us a demo of throwing clay on his wheel (they each have their own), where he formed a pitcher.
We enjoyed talking to them so much, we probably took far too much of their time! Their passion for ceramics, art, and the mountains was clearly evident.
After touring their studio, they mentioned a waterfall and garden we might enjoy seeing. JR was being modest.
The waterfall they have in their front yard is stunning, and they have planted flowers, plants, fruit trees, and vegetables all around. We enjoyed seeing the waterfall, with its multiple tiers and pools full of Koi.
We would strongly encourage you to visit the Page's website to view their ceramic art, and if you're in Burnsville to stop by and see their gallery and meet them in person. Just be sure to call ahead at: (828) 381-6638.
Trust us, you'll be glad you did.
Wrapping Up our visit to Burnsville NC
When we first decided to visit Burnsville NC, we really weren't sure how much it would have to offer and we way underestimated the number of things to see and do.
Burnsville is a wonderful small mountain town, that is only a short drive from Asheville, and well worth a day trip, a weekend, or even longer vacation.
The wonderful historic downtown, restaurants, things to do, outdoor activities, and close proximity to Mount Mitchell and the Blue Ridge Parkway make it the perfect mountain getaway destination. We feel like we not only visited and had an amazing time but made many new friends while we were there as well.
Be sure to visit Burnsville NC, and discover for yourself all that it has to offer!