During the first two weekends in December, Dillsboro will host the 34th annual Festival of Lights and Luminaries. The town’s historic buildings will be covered in thousands of white lights and the streets will be lined with paper bag luminaries. Many businesses will be offering refreshments and live entertainment, including carolers.
Lisa Potts, chair of the festival, is also the third owner of Nancy Tut’s Christmas Shop, which has been in Dillsboro since 1969. Potts says her business thrives during the four days of the festival. “Over the years, we have not only seen locals support the festival, but also more tourists and visitors from surrounding areas,” says Potts, who has chaired the festival for three years. “The festival is a great way to feel the Christmas spirit. The luminaries take people back to a simpler time and give them a little spark of magic to share with others.”
The Festival of Lights and Luminaries will take place Friday and Saturday, December 1 and 2 and December 8 and 9, from 5—9 p.m. Students and faculty of Southwestern Community College and Western Carolina University can enjoy special discounts and a grand prize drawing on Friday, December 1. Santa and Mrs. Claus will be available for visits at Santa’s Workshop in the Dillsboro town hall during each night of the festival. Free parking and shuttle transportation for the event will be available at Monteith Farmstead and Community Park.
Dillsboro is located at the intersection of US Highways 19/74 and 441, 45 minutes west of Asheville.