Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019 - 21

COUNTRY ROADS

Blue Ridge Parkway's Orchard at Altapass Celebrates 25 Years at Milepost 328.3

T

wenty-five years ago, Kit (Carson)
Trubey sat reading the local paper at
her brother's Little Switzerland home when
she noticed "277 acres of unrestricted
land" for sale in North Carolina on the Blue
Ridge Parkway. The property, just down the
road, was worth a look. It was here, amid a
declining orchard rimmed by spectacular,
shadowy mountains, that they agreed the
land needed to be preserved. They made an
offer. Thus began the Carson legacy and the
Orchard at Altapass.
It took two years of pulling weeds and
cutting out poison ivy before any apples
could be picked. Eventually the processing
plant that consumed the "red barn" was
moved to the basement, where it remains
today, and live music was brought to the
public.
Between 2002 and 2006, two nonprofits
were established-to preserve the land, the
Orchard, and the heritage of the region.
Two years ago, the Apple Core Grill
opened, making the Orchard more than

a way station between points. Open from
May through October, it has become a
destination.
Now in 2019, the Orchard at Altapass
celebrates its 25th anniversary with live
traditional music, dancing, hayrides, storytelling, 10 walking trails, monarch butterfly
and honey bee habitats, theatre productions, homemade fudge and 30 varieties of

heirloom apples. "The principle joy after 25
years is the way it has changed and affected
the people who visit," says Bill Carson,
orchard co-founder with wife Judy, and current CEO. "We call it saving the good stuff."
Bill Carson is still flatfooting and telling
stories every weekend and still saving the
good stuff. For more information:
altapassorchard.org.

The Orchard at
Altapass has
expanded its offerings
significantly over the
past 25 years as a
Blue Ridge Parkway
landmark.

MAY/JUNE 2019

21


http://www.altapassorchard.org http://helenga.org

Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019

Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country - May/June 2019 - Cover2
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