Wooly Worm Festival – Banner Elk NC

The Wooly Worm Festival is held in Banner Elk every year on the third weekend in October. This festival provides an opportunity to witness wooly worm races and to debate how accurately the worms stripes will forecast the winter. This festival has been happening every year since 1978.

The wooly worm races determine which one worm will have the honor of predicting the severity of the coming winter; and they make that worm earn the honor by winning heat after heat of hard-fought races up a three-foot length of string. 

No person is more likely to have a winning worm than any other person. There is no home-field advantage, no preferred age for the person who sets the worm on the string (although worms raced by children do seem to win a bit more frequently). And the $1,000 first prize that accompanies the prestige of having your worm used to pronounce the official winter forecast doesn't hurt either.

Selecting names for the Woolly Worms is a delightful way to learn how amazingly creative your friends and family members can be. Consider these clever monikers: Merryweather, Patsy Climb and Dale Wormhardt.

There is no other experience in life that can produce the absurd euphoria that comes from cheering for a caterpillar to climb a string. It is so indisputably ridiculous that it is completely liberating!

In addition to the Woolly Worm Races, the festival features crafts, food vendors, live entertainment and much more. The festival attracts 20,000 fans, 140 vendors and around 1,000 race entrants for a 10K.

The Woolly Worm Festival is sponsored by the Avery County Chamber of Commerce and the Kiwanis Club of Banner Elk and a portion of the proceeds go to support children's charities throughout the county.

This 2014 festival is October 18 & 19 from 9:00AM to 4:00PM. Admission is $5.00 for adults, $2.00 for children 6-12, under 5 years old, free.

October a beautiful time of year here in the High Country. After you have enjoyed the festivities make a trip over into Ashe County and enjoy the beautiful scenery along the way.  Ashe County is situated in the northwest corner of western NC. The area is known for its rural charm, southern hospitality, and recreational opportunities. The historic New River with unsurpassed fishing, kayaking, and canoeing. The river meanders through the countryside. The Blue Ridge Parkway with miles of hiking trails, picnic areas, and scenic venues is close-by. Nearby West Jefferson is a quaint mountain village with shops, art galleries, and a vast array of restaurants.

West Jefferson NC is just a little over an hour away, about 41 miles.  West Jefferson is a lovely small town with much to see and do.  A1 Mountain Realty is right in the center of town and the experienced staff of Ashe County Realtors can help you with all your North Carolina Real Estate needs whether it's in Ashe, Watuaga, Wilkes or Avery counties. So if you see a home or a piece of land that is for sale come by the office and let Ellen or Gwen help you.