October 2018 Special Events and Workshops


Come Share in the Glorious Cause of Liberty! 



Watauga Valley Fife and Drum Corps

1st and 3rd Saturdays

10 am – noon

The Watauga Valley Fife & Drum Corps performs at historical events, dedications,and parades.  Musical experience is welcome but not necessary, just come with a willingness to learn.


Bird Walks with the Lee & Lois Herndon TOS Chapter            

Saturdays, October 6, 13, 20, & 27                               

8:00 am

Meet other birders and naturalists at Sycamore Shoals for a morning of birding during the migratory season.   The group meets in the parking lot in front of the Visitors Center.


23rd Annual Sycamore Shoals Quilt Show

Friday & Saturday,   October 5, and 6th                                  

9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Sunday, October 7

1:00 pm – 4:30 pm

This three-day exhibition, sponsored by the Sycamore Shoals Stitchers, features a show and demonstrations by local quilters. Bed quilts, wall hangings, holiday and baby quilts, miniatures and antique quilts will be on display.


Adult Beginning Sewing                                                            

Instructor: Donna Horowitz

Tuesdays, October 9, 16, 23, 30 & Nov 6

6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Cost: $65.00 plus supplies –

Min: 3    Max: 7

Includes use of sewing tools for classroom usage. Supply list for the class will be provided at the first class. Student needs to bring their machine for the first class.

Introduction to sewing while creating a simple project: lined apron with pockets. Course covers: the basic operations of a sewing machine, pattern layout, sewing terminology and hands on techniques.


The Liberty Spinners

Tuesday, October 9

9:30 am

This gathering of spinners and fiber artists is open to anyone interested in the art of spinning. Join us at 9:30 am on the 2nd Tuesday of each month (April to November).


Ranger Led Bike Ride

Thursday, October 11

10:00 am – approx. 11:00 am

Cost: $3.00

Max: 10

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Choose “Upcoming Events” in the left hand menu

Join Ranger Davis for a ranger led bike ride up the Tweetsie Trail to the Elizabethton Covered Bridge, then back to the park via the Elizabethton Linear Trail. Total loop will be about 6 miles and take approximately one hour depending on the average ability level of the attending participants. Portions of the route will not be suitable for pull behind child carriers. Please dress appropriately for the weather and bring your own water. Program will be cancelled/rescheduled in the event of severely inclement weather.


Hambone 101

Wednesday, October 10

10:00 am – 10:30 am

Cost: $5.00 Adults/ Ages 17 and Under FREE

Max: 14

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Choose “Upcoming Events” in the left hand menu.

Have you ever wondered how to make music on the go? Do you every find yourself without a drum set but really wanting to lay down a beat? Join Ranger Hayslett at the picnic area beside the trailhead to learn the oldest form of percussion, patting juba or hambonin’!


Mysterious Candlelight Tours of the Carter Mansion

(Recommended for ages 10 and up)

Thursday, October 11

7:30 pm & 8:30 pm

Thursday, October 18

7:30 pm & 8:30 pm

Cost: $7.00 Adults, $5.00 Ages 17 & under

Max: 15 per tour

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

It’s that time of year again when the air turns cool, leaves change color, ghosts stories are told, and certain old houses take on an ominous appearance. If you have ever wondered what goes on at night in a 200-year-old house, and are willing to brave the darkness and shadows, these tours may be for you. Join Carter Mansion curator Chad Bogart for a tantalizing tour of this old estate built by John and Landon Carter in 1775. Hear tales of ghostly appearances, unexplained happenings, mysterious past events, strange superstitions and other unusual goings-on with a bit of history and humor thrown in for good measure. Meet at the Carter Mansion 1031 Broad Street, Elizabethton, TN 37643.



Sabine Hill Bicentennial Celebration Events

Join us as we celebrate 200 years of the beautiful Taylor home described as one of the finest examples of wood framed Federal architecture in the state of Tennessee 

An Evening with Andrew Jackson

Friday, October 12

6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

Cost: $8.00

Max: 80

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Join us as we welcome historian and renowned living history figure Grant Hardin as he portrays one of America’s most well know historic figures, General Andrew Jackson. General Jackson will recount his days as a youth during the American Revolution, his rise to military power, and his finest hour at the Battle of New Orleans.

Meet at ‘The Gathering Place’ in the Sycamore Shoals Visitor Center

6:00 – Doors Open

6:15 – Early 19th Century Music

7:00 – General Jackson

8:00 – Reception and Light Refreshments


Sabine Hill Guided Tours

Saturday, October 13

9:00 am, 11:00 am, 1:00 pm & 3:00 pm

Sunday, October 14

1:00 pm & 3:00 pm

Cost: Adults – $7.00; Ages 7 to 17 years – $3.00; 6 and under free

max: 18 per tour

Registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Described as one of the finest examples of Federal architecture in the State of Tennessee, Sabine Hill is a must see! Restored by the Tennessee Historical Commission and operated by Tennessee State Parks, the house has been returned to its 1818 splendor. These special bicentennial tours will include early 19th century living history demonstrations and displays in addition to the regular guided tour of the historic house. Enjoy an 1812 era militia camp, US Army regular presentation, historic foodways, and more! Please note there are no restroom facilities on site at Sabine Hill, so plan accordingly before your arrival.

Tour will meet at the site: 2328 West G Street, Elizabethton, TN 37643


Early 19th Century Card Games

Saturday, October 13

1:00 – 4:00 pm

Cost: Free

Playing cards was a very common pastime in the early 1800s. Join in the fun, and learn some early 19th century card games.

Meet at ‘The Gathering Place’ in the Sycamore Shoals Visitor Center.


Early 19th Century Dance Styles & Practices

Sunday, October 14

1:30 – 4:00 pm

Cost: Free

Dancing was a highly popular social pastime in the early 19th century. Join Sabine Hill Social Society members to learn about these historical dance styles, or simply watch and enjoy. No partner or prior experience required.

Meet at ‘The Gathering Place’ in the Sycamore Shoals Visitor Center.


Get Ready for Spring – Winterizing Your Garden Instructor: Ben Hunter

Saturday, October 20

9 am – noon

Cost: No Charge – Registration is NOT necessary for this session

It’s not too early to be planning & building your spring garden. Gardener extraordinaire, Ben Hunter, will be joining us to share his experiences & techniques for growing the garden of your dreams!  Sponsored by the Northeast Tennessee Master Gardeners.


Carter Mansion Tour

Wednesday, October 24

11:00 am

Cost: $7.00 for adults. $3.00 ages 7 – 17

6 and under are free

Max: 20

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Choose “Upcoming Events” in the left hand menu

Join Ranger Davis for a tour of Tennessee’s oldest frame house! Discover the secrets of this elegant frontier home and learn the history of the family who built it between 1775 and 1780. Tour will be given in 18th century period clothing. The Historic John and Landon Carter Mansion is located at 1031 Broad Street, Elizabethton, TN 37643


Scary Stories at Fort Watauga

Thursday, October 25

7:30 pm

Strange things happen around All Hallows Eve, especially at an old fort by the river. Bring the family and join us for tales of woe and terror, the weird and macabre, with a touch of wit thrown in for good measure. Don’t be afraid, Fort Watauga at Sycamore Shoals isn’t haunted… we think!


Old Time Music Jam – Led by Art Lang

Sunday, October 28

1:30 pm – 4:00 pm

Enjoy the rich musical traditions of our region each month. Old time musicians of all levels are welcome. Don’t play and instrument? Come on over, kick back, and enjoy the tunes!


Fall Foliage Walk                                                                        

Wednesday, October 31

10:00 am – 11: am

Cost: $5.00 Adults/ Ages 17 and Under FREE

Max: 16

Pre-registration required – www.tnstateparks.com/parks/sycamore-shoals

Choose “Upcoming Events” in the left hand menu.

Come take a deep breath of the crisp fall air and experience the beauty of a rainbow of foliage along the banks of the Watauga River. Join Ranger Hayslett at the trailhead kiosk for an easy 1 mile loop on gravel. Wear appropriate clothing and footwear and be sure to bring some water and binoculars for critter spotting.


Traditional Arts Workshops

To join one or more classes, you must register in advance by

calling 423-543-5808 and pre-pay.

If you would like to receive updated information throughout the year, please send your email address to jennifer.bauer@tn.gov 


                                                        Visitors Center Hours:

9:00 AM – 4:00 PM Monday through Saturday

1:00 PM – 4:30 PM Sunday

Our Visitors Center is closed on most State holidays.

Park grounds are open from dawn until dusk.

In the event of extremely inclement winter weather, contact the park about program cancelations and park office closings.