Discover the journey. Then help protect it.

February 2018 - In this issue of The Scenic:

Sprucing Up for Spring at Cone Manor

Blue Ridge Parkway staff are cleaning Flat Top Manor from top to bottom to prepare for opening day.

Each spring, Flat Top Manor at Moses H. Cone Memorial Park   is one of the first sites on the Blue Ridge Parkway to open, thanks to the fine folks who run the Parkway Craft Center. Right now, there is plenty of behind-the-scenes activity at the home in preparation for opening day on March 30. The National Park Service staff is polishing banisters, cleaning windows, dusting woodwork, and much more to get the grand house ready for visitors. Historical houses need lots of care, but their charm, character, and the stories they hold are well worth the effort.

There are plenty of ways you can become part of the Cone estate's next chapter (without breaking out a broom or dust cloth).  You can...

Volunteer:  The Foundation is recruiting volunteers to work with Parkway staff on providing interpretation and education programs for visitors, as well as general site information. These are wonderful opportunities to gain a deeper knowledge about the 3,500-acre park near Blowing Rock, while passing on stories to the thousands who explore the manor and carriage trails each year.  Sign up

Come to the Denim Ball: Mark your calendar for the third annual Denim Ball on August 3 at Chetola Resort at Blowing Rock, North Carolina. This fundraising gala sells out each year, so be sure to check our upcoming newsletters for a ticket release date. You or your business can also sponsor the event or donate to our auction by contacting Mandy Gee at

Give:  So far, donors have generously supported our push for major improvements at the estate to the tune of $2 million. That leaves us just $1 million away from our goal! Your gift will ensure the completion of extensive repairs at the manor house and on the grounds.  Donate now
Superintendent J.D. Lee

The Foundation is happy to welcome the Blue Ridge Parkway's new superintendent, J.D. Lee. For the past eight years, Lee has served as deputy superintendent of Big Cypress National Preserve in southern Florida. He is a 30-year veteran of the National Park Service, beginning his career as a seasonal park ranger and wildland firefighter at Great Smoky Mountains National Park. We enjoyed working with him while he served as Acting Superintendent, and are looking forward to protecting the park with him and the whole Parkway team. Read more

Parkway is No. 1 in Visitation!

More than 16 million people accepted the Blue Ridge Parkway's   invitation to explore these gorgeous mountains in 2017, making the park unit the most visited in the country! For several years, the Parkway and Golden Gate National Recreation Area in California have traded turns in the No. 1 position, but this was the Parkway's year. Imagine all that could be done to protect and care for the Parkway if each of the 16,093,765 visitors gave just $1 (or more)! That total would double the Parkway's entire budget for the year. Your journey is priceless, but you can give now to show how much you care.

Parkway Place Challenge

Do you recognize this scenic Parkway location? If so, follow us on Facebook and Instagram to post your answer under the matching image to enter the Parkway Place Challenge. One winner will be drawn from those with the correct answer and will receive a Blue Ridge Parkway RIDE license plate. Good luck!
Road to the Past

This charming photograph of Bertha Cone's grandniece on the back porch of Flat Top Manor showcases a missing piece of history at Moses H. Cone Memorial Park. Several buildings once stood behind the 23-room house, including a laundry house and servants' quarters. The buildings were razed except for one cottage that was relocated beyond the carriage house. 

Order your North Carolina specialty license tag and help the Blue Ridge Parkway.  For each attractive license plate sold, $20 goes toward important projects on the scenic route, and $10 funds the N.C. Department of Transportation Wildflower Program

Deadline Approaches for Waterrock Knob Comments

The Waterrock Knob region of Western North Carolina is a rare biodiverse landscape at one of the highest points along the Blue Ridge Parkway. Elk, rare salamanders, flying squirrels, and high elevation spruce-fir forests all inhabit this breathtaking place also known as the Plott Balsams. The area is also home to rich Cherokee and Appalachian cultural history.
The National Park Service, neighboring communities, land trusts, nonprofits, and stakeholders are collaborating to create a Waterrock Knob Regional Vision Plan, and you can share your input. We invite you to review a draft of the document and contribute thoughts by Sunday, February 25. Your feedback will help shape the future stewardship of this area's natural and cultural resources and its role in the broader landscape. Provide feedback

Mark Your Calendar

4 to 7 p.m., Wednesday, February 28, free
Folk Art Center, milepost 382, Asheville, North Carolina
Come say hello during this open house to prepare folks for the 2018 season on the Parkway. We'll be there to share information on our upcoming Parkway projects.

Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition Exhibition
6-10 p.m., Friday, March 2; free
Turchin Center for the Visual Arts, Boone, North Carolina
Each year, the Appalachian Mountain Photography Competition exhibition highlights exceptional images that represent the people, places, and culture of the mountains. The Foundation helps in this effort with a category focused on the Blue Ridge Parkway. Join us to celebrate the finalists at a reception during First Friday Art Crawl. That night and through March 23, you can cast your vote for the People's Choice winner.  Learn more

Audrey and Frank Peterman
All Hands on Deck!:
Audrey and Frank Peterman

7 p.m., Monday, March 26; free
UNC Asheville Humanities Lecture Hall, Asheville, North Carolina
We're proud to sponsor a special speaking engagement with Audrey and Frank Peterman, who share more than two decades of exploration in national parks, forests, and wildlife refuges, and pioneered efforts to promote them among Americans of color. The event is free and open to the public. Learn more

Blue Ridge High Pass Boogie
Friday-Sunday, May 11-13; $125-$375
Willville Bike Camp, Meadows of Dan, Virginia
The fifth annual Blue Ridge High Pass Boogie is taking the show on the road. This year, participants will gather at the Willville Campground in Meadows of Dan, Virginia, for a weekend of exploring southern Virginia's best motorcycle routes. As in years past, the event offers two on-road routes and one dual-sport route. Camping is included with your donation, and there are three weekend packages available that include camping, meals, and escorted rides ranging from $125 to $375. The Boogie is presented by Eurosport Asheville and Frontline Eurosports. Sign up 

Join our Community of Stewards                           


As the primary fundraiser and trusted steward of the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Foundation is forever committed to preserving the past, enhancing the present, and safeguarding the future of America's Favorite Journey™. Learn more about joining our Community of Stewards at .

Blue Ridge Parkway Foundation
717 S. Marshall St., Suite 105B,  Winston-Salem, NC  27101
& 322 Gashes Creek Road, Asheville, NC 28803
(866) 308-2773 |