Archive for Asheville Weather

Check the weather forecast for your Asheville visit

With the shift into autumn last week and the weather changes it will bring, it’s a good time to note that our Lovers’ Loop Retreat Web site has a weather link on the home page that you can click to get a five-day forecast.

Whatever time of year you visit Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville vacation rental, you can get a glimpse of what to expect in terms of weather during your stay.

Some of our guests enjoy relaxing on the porch that’s available only to guests. Autumn is a great time to sit outside with the squirrels and birds and the insects that fill the night sky with their own symphony.

Lovers’ Loop Retreat is now on Twitter and Facebook , so look for us there.

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Mount Mitchell beckons you!

 We celebrated a birthday last week by hiking to the top of Mount Mitchell, the highest point in the United States east of the Mississippi River. What a glorious day, beautiful enough to fall in love with.

Mount Mitchell is about 30 miles north of our Lovers’ Loop Retreat, an Asheville bed and breakfast alternative. It’s a lovely drive along the Blue Ridge Parkway to Mount Mitchell State Park. There are no entry fees.  Because of the particular geography and elevation, the flora and fauna at Mount Mitchell are akin to those found in Canada, a sort of alpine environment.

On the trail to the peak, cool, soft moss covers rocks and fallen tree limbs, and hikers follow a trail lined with rocks and tree roots. The scent of the spruce-fir forest is enchanting all along the trail, and much of the path is shaded. When the path opens to views, the vistas of the mountains are wonderful.

At the top of Mount Mitchell is an observation tower that’s worth checking out. On a clear day, the views are magnificent. You can hike or drive to the tower.

This is one of our favorite destinations in Western North Carolina, and we encourage our guests at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our Asheville vacation rental, to consider the trip.

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Asheville Spring Events

Lovers’ Loop Retreat April ’09 muse-letter

            In April here at Lovers’ Loop Retreat, our alternative bed and breakfast in Asheville, N.C., the serviceberry tree explodes into white blooms that resemble popcorn before the petals fall to the ground. There’s more to come with dogwoods and rhododendrons.

            And when you leave our Asheville vacation rental, signs of spring abound elsewhere, in nature—redbud, pear and cherry trees, hyacinths and daffodils—and in activities. Visit our Web site at www.loversloopretreat.com to see a list of events we update regularly.

            In April we’ll host some first-time visitors to Lovers’ Loop Retreat and more repeat guests, which always is a treat for us. They—and you— have a lot of entertainment options this month, in addition to the ever-present Blue Ridge Parkway with its hiking and biking opportunities a stone’s throw from our vacation rental and other outdoor recreational fun, including rock climbing and kayaking.

            April 2-25 is Eve-Olution, a play about motherhood, at the Asheville Community Theatre downtown. April 3 is the first art gallery walk of the season in downtown Asheville. The many diverse galleries stay open later and offer refreshments to encourage browsers. You’ll see all types of art peepers at this lively and happening event. Art walks also will occur the first Friday in June, August and October.   

            April 4 starts the season for Asheville’s Blue Ridge Roller Girls, a roller derby team that elbows its way around the fast track at the civic center downtown. These whizzing warriors on skates are great competitors and hardy souls—if not a bit crazy—and they provide some drama and flashy outfits for the audience, too. Their bouts, which run from now until late fall, are way fun. Check our Web site for more information.

            April also means the beginning of Biltmore estate’s annual Festival of Flowers, listed on our Web site, which lasts through May 17. There are tulips and other flowers galore at this beautiful estate, an easy 10-minute drive from Lovers’ Loop Retreat and the most popular historic attraction in North Carolina. Biltmore has just opened several more rooms to the public at the George Vanderbilt mansion that managers call America’s largest house.

            April brings a new festival to Asheville, HATCHfest, April 15-19, an event that features films, performances, workshops, speakers and art exhibits around downtown on themes of architecture, fashion, visual art, music, design and technology and more. There’s a link on our Web site.

            Comedian Kate Clinton will perform at the Diana Wortham Theatre downtown April 23. We’ve seen Kate more than once, and she’s still funny.

            Peeking into early May, Saffire, the Uppity Blues Women perform May 1 in Asheville, apparently part of their final tour. The spring herb festival is May 1-3 at the Western North Carolina Farmers Market in Asheville, and the annual rhododendron show is May 2-3 at the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville. A popular event is the twice-a-year Lake Eden Arts Festival (LEAF) of visual and healing arts, dance and music in Black Mountain just east of Asheville May 8-10.  

            All these events and more are listed on our Web site. Join us at Lovers’ Loop Retreat! Please pass along our muse-letter to your friends. See you in Asheville!

          

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The Lover’s Loop Retreat March Muse-Letter

 

Lovers’ Loop Retreat March ’09 muse-letter

            Hurray and yeeeeeoooowwww! March is our favorite month. And why not? It boasts the first day of spring and the beginning of Daylight Saving Time, when the days start to become longer.   

            By now, we don’t have to look far to see signs of spring at our Lovers’ Loop Retreat vacation rental here in Asheville, N.C. The forsythia in the backyard has started to sprout, and that’s one of our most treasured blooms: we love how it shouts out its yellowness, happy to be what it is. Daffodils are blooming down the street, and soon we’ll see them scattered sunny side up around our yard.

            Though Asheville is hopping all year long, activities start to crank into a different gear in March. Be sure to visit our Web site, www.loversloopretreat.com, which contains lots of information, including a growing list of events in the area, photos of our Asheville bed and breakfast alternative and our contact information. Our home page has a YouTube link to videos about Asheville.              

            Food is big here. And there’s a new Foodtopian Society, which capitalizes on the area’s many farmers’ markets, independent restaurants, breweries, cooking classes, forest-to-table adventures, specialty food items, handcrafted kitchen wares and foodie souvenirs. That said, we’re happy to offer an affordable bed and breakfast alternative that gives our visitors the option of preparing meals in the guest suite.

            Part of the ongoing food affair in Asheville is the first National Truffle Fest—who knew?— with cooking demonstrations, a cook-off and dinners at the Biltmore estate March 5-8. The Organic Growers School’s annual spring conference, which includes cooking workshops, is March 21-22 just south of Asheville. March also offers a variety of musical events, from the Asheville Symphony March 14 to Ani DiFranco March 13-14 and John Prine March 28, all in downtown Asheville. This is the month of the Grove Park Inn’s annual comedy classic weekend March 13-15. And for orchid lovers, the annual orchid show at the North Carolina Arboretum in Asheville is March 27-28; it’s worth a visit to see those fascinating flowers! There’s a new festival on the block here, too. The first annual Asheville Jewish Film Festival is March 21-26. See more about all of these events on our Web site.

            On a personal note, four members of the women’s poetry group we facilitate —including one of your hosts at Lovers’ Loop Retreat—will read their work at Holy Ground in Asheville on March 22.     

             Indigo Girls fans will appreciate a heads-up that the duo plans an appearance in Asheville on April 8. That’s on our Web site, too. The word is that one of the Indigo Girls has a sister who lives in Asheville, so they play here with some regularity.      

            Join us at Lovers’ Loop Retreat! Please pass along our muse-letter to your friends. And visit our Web site to check out upcoming events. See you in Asheville!

 

           

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The F Month in Asheville

Welcome to the F Month. When we lived in Massachusetts in the 1990s [during a couple of their “worst” (that is, messy) winters on record], some residents fed up with snow and ice labeled February the F Month. That label doesn’t fit Asheville, N.C., where winters are much milder. If we lack some of New England’s snow, we sure don’t lack a beautiful wintertime mountain view here at Lovers’ Loop Retreat. The mountains are to the east, which means our sunrises are that much prettier when they spill over the hills.

            There are many activities and fun things to do here in winter. This month, the options include a Mardi Gras party and parade in downtown Asheville, a bluegrass festival, a Beatlemania concert and funky, improvisational comedy. Be sure to visit our Web site, www.loversloopretreat.com, which contains lots of information, including a list of events in the area, and a few new photos of our Asheville bed and breakfast alternative. Our home page has a YouTube link to videos about Asheville.

             One fun pastime in winter is also free—gallery hopping. Asheville’s many art galleries offer an inspiring variety, and the Asheville area’s reputation as an arts destination brings many visitors. Most of Asheville’s galleries are downtown. But one of the best collections of art and crafts is at the Southern Highland Craft Guild gallery at the visitors’ center on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The visitors’ center and guild’s gallery are a scenic five-minute drive along the parkway from Lovers’ Loop Retreat.

            Asheville’s history reputation is significant, too. Biltmore Estate, just 10 minutes from Lovers’ Loop Retreat, again was ranked as the most visited historic attraction in North Carolina in 2008. Biltmore is the historic home and grounds of George Vanderbilt. The house and gardens are amazing. Also ranking high on the state list of historic attractions for 2008 were the North Carolina Arboretum, 10 miles down the Blue Ridge Parkway from Lovers’ Loop Retreat, and Chimney Rock Park, North Carolina’s newest state park, a pretty 30-minute drive from our vacation rental.  

            Another outdoor activity easily accessible from Lovers’ Loop Retreat is the Mountains-to-Sea Trail, a state park that will encompass 1,000 acres across North Carolina when it’s finished. Land is still being acquired for the trail, part of which already is in place along the Blue Ridge Parkway a stone’s throw from Lovers’ Loop Retreat.

            We’re happy to offer an affordable bed and breakfast alternative that gives guests the option of preparing meals in the guest suite. Asheville has several independently-owned grocery stores and food coops with a good selection of organic foods, and many of our guests have shopped at these stores.

            Join us at Lovers’ Loop Retreat! Please pass along our muse-letter to your friends. And remember to visit our Web site to check out upcoming events. See you in Asheville!

          

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Almost Spring in Asheville

This is that crazy time of year when you bundle up in the morning because it’s quite chilly. You may even have to scrape frost off the windshield like I did this morning. But, by late afternoon you’re in shirt sleeves – not every day, but some days.

The daffodils are out in most of the neighborhood and almost out in our yard. Crocuses are out all over the place – purple, white and golden. And now the forsythia are really beginning to show their color. The neighbors have hundreds of tulips, but they aren’t ready to bloom quite yet. Last year they were at their peak when Asheville had an April snow storm – just about an inch, but it was cold enough to throw everything into a tizzy. So, we’re in no huge hurry to have the flowers come out.

Another thing we love to see at Lovers’ Loop Retreat is the birds. We just refilled one of our bird feeders. They’re a constant source of joy as we see who’ll land and get a snack. Some of the birds prefer to go under the feeders and get the seeds that fall. Sitting on our porch the other night we watched a blue bird sitting in a tree. It just sat there for the longest time. I wonder if it was watching us?

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