Plus, construction begins on Woodfin's Whitewater Wave.
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Today’s Forecast

83º | 13% chance of precipitation
Sunrise 6:15 a.m. | Sunset 8:49 p.m.

Free as a bird
Pecan tree in Magnolia Park
Spend the day exploring the Asheville Edibles Map.|Photo via The City of Asheville
If your summer bucket list looks like it’s going to break the bank, it’s time to draw up a new draft. To help you out, we’ve gathered more than 10 free activities for maximizing fun and minimizing spending in the Asheville area. Let’s dive in.

Explore the great outdoors

As you can imagine, there’s no shortage of outdoor activities here in the Land of the Sky. Pack a picnic and set off to a scenic spot, hit a local hiking trail, or play a round of disc golf at a nearby park. If you’re looking for something a bit more out-of-the-box, you can go on a hunt for berries, nuts, and fruits using the Asheville Edibles Map.

Take a tour

Lace up your sneakers and hit the pavement to learn more about our city’s history. The Asheville Urban Trail, Asheville Architecture Trail, and Asheville Black Cultural Heritage Trail are all self-guided tours, but if you want a guide to lead the way, embark on an excursion with Citizen Vinyl or Asheville Free Walking Tours.


See what awaits when you find a cache.


Photo via Groundspeak Inc. (dba Geocaching)


Join the world’s largest treasure hunt, and see Asheville in a whole new way. Participants use GPS coordinates to locate caches — think: hidden containers filled with small, tradeable knick-knacks that can be found in outdoor public spaces. Learn how to get started.

Visit a museum

Learn something new at the Biltmore Industries Homespun Museum, Folk Art Center, or Asheville Radio Museum, which all offer free admission. Bonus: Community Days at the Asheville Art Museum have free admission and a variety of engaging activities. The next one is Saturday, June 29, highlighting the “Shifting Perceptions” exhibition with games, a film screening, portrait sessions, and live music.

Pro tip: There are always plenty of unique, fun, and (best of all) free, events posted on our events calendar.
What are your favorite free local activities?

Keep the fun going all summer long by sharing your favorite no-cost outings.
Monday, June 24
  • Community Drum Class | Monday, June 24 | 7-9 p.m. | The Well, 3 Louisiana Ave., Asheville | Free | Practice your hand drumming skills with local drummer and instructor Larry McDowell.
Tuesday, June 25
  • Guided Trail Walk | Tuesday, June 25 | 1-3 p.m. | The North Carolina Arboretum, 100 Frederick Law Olmsted Way, Asheville | Free | Trained volunteer guides will take you on a one to two-mile hike through woodland trails while discussing natural history.
  • Quilting Bee | Tuesday, June 25 | 10 a.m.-2 p.m. | East Asheville Library, 3 Avon Rd., Asheville | Free | All quilters are welcome to bring their sewing machines and work on a project in the company of others.
Wednesday, June 26
  • Pasta Class | Wednesday, June 26 | 2-4 p.m. | Bargello, 7 Patton Ave., Asheville | $85 | Whip up several types of stuffed pasta from scratch under the guidance of expert chefs.
  • Gentle Yoga for Seniors | Wednesday, June 26 | 2:30-3:30 p.m. | Dragon Phoenix, 51 N. Merrimon Ave., #109, Asheville | $15-$18 | Practice gentle stretching and accessible poses while you relax and focus on your breath.
  • Jenny Lewis | Wednesday, June 26 | 7 p.m. | The Orange Peel, 101 Biltmore Ave., Asheville | $35-$38 | Catch the indie rock star on her “Joy’all Ball Tour,” with support from Dean Johnson.
Thursday, June 27
  • The Knotty G’s | Thursday, June 27 | 8-11 p.m. | One World Brewing - Downtown, 10 Patton Ave., Asheville | Free | Hear the husband and wife duo perform their soulful Americana tunes.
Click here to have your event featured.
AdventureELEVATE brings $500,000 to Asheville (plus 2 more benefits)
gif of photos from adventureelevate conference including an outdoor excursion, attendees meeting local artisans, a group meeting outdoors, the keynote speaker Jeff Jenkins, and asheville musicians
Travel thought leaders included keynote speaker Jeff Jenkins, the National Geographic host of “Never Say Never” and founder of Chubby Diaries.|Photos by Andrew Daugherty/provided by Explore Asheville
Asheville got the international spotlight this month as 300 travel leaders from 40 countries gathered for the inaugural Southeast-hosting of the Adventure Travel Trade Association’s (ATTA) AdventureELEVATE.

Presented in partnership with Explore Asheville, the annual conference brings together sustainability-oriented adventure travel community members to learn about responsible outdoor travel industries.

Here are three ways this benefited Asheville:

🏔️ Local pride

We have a lot of pride in where we live — and now travel thought leaders know why. Asheville glowed as it did what it does best: Showed off its unparalleled outdoor offerings as attendees experienced waterfall hikes, whitewater rafting, zip-lining, forest bathing + more.

🛶 Local industries

The conference highlighted Asheville’s outdoor gear industry, which employs 10,000+ local residents and generates $750 million annually. Oh yeah — the local food + culture scene shined, too.

🌇 Local spending

The three-day event generated $500,000 in visitor spending, showing the economic benefits to local businesses in hosting events in our city + Buncombe County.
News Notes
  • The tides are turning for Woodfin’s Greenway and Blueway project. Construction has begun on the Whitewater Wave and Riverside Park’s four-acre expansion. We attended the groundbreaking ceremony held last week on Friday, June 21 — get a glimpse of what’s to come.
  • On Sunday, July 14, Bountiful Cities’ Urban Garden Tour will guide you through 10 of Asheville’s urban gardens and teach you how the gardens produce food and increase climate resiliency. Register to tour the gardens for free, or buy the $40 tasting ticket to enjoy bites and bevs at each stop.
  • Yancey County resident Diane Kent fulfilled a longtime dream by donating a conservation easement, with Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy (SAHC) now protecting the 135 acres along Banks Creek. Plus, the NC Native Plant Society gave SAHC a $1,000 grant to do a biological inventory of the land. Learn more about the property.
  • Are you a writer? Do you love rooftops? If you answered yes to both, Flatiron Writers Room has the event for you. The organization’s next Writers on Rooftops is tomorrow, June 25 at the Flat Iron Hotel rooftop bar from 4 to 6 p.m. where you can chat with other writers at this informal meetup.
  • Speaking of the Flat Iron Hotel, its restaurant Luminosa is now serving brunch on Saturdays and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Breakfast pizza, anyone?
🚌 A new support system
Linked4Life Photo 1.png
Cheryl Antoncic, co-owner of Bear’s Smokehouse, founded the nonprofit in 2020.|Photo via Linked4Life Foundation
The Linked4Life Foundation and All Souls Counseling Center are launching a new program to provide Asheville’s food and beverage workers with a peer support network for mental health resources and up to six free counseling sessions.

Supporters and potential partners can attend an info session to learn more about the program tomorrow, June 25, from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Bear’s Smokehouse South Slope location.

On Thursday, July 4, celebrate the new initiative with barbecue and a mechanical bull at Bear’s Smokehouse, during the “Mental Health is No Bull” event. Plus, a food truck will be transformed into the HOPE Bus, where people can make a $6 donation to receive two carabiners — one is to keep and the other comes with a tag to write an uplifting message and attach to the bus.

The bus, which will then be open daily from 12 to 8 p.m., will feature art from muralist Ian Wilkinson about mental health.
The Buy
Colorful margarita glasses that are shatterproof — aka, perfect for outdoor pool parties.
The Wrap
Grace Powers.JPEG Today’s edition by:
From the editor
If you’re looking for a fun + unique volunteer opportunity, this will be music to your ears. You can pick up a shift at the inaugural Black Mountain Blues festival Friday, July 12 through Sunday, July 14. Bonus: You’ll get a day pass for one shift or a weekend pass for multiple shifts.
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