A new website for the project, which is a program of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Partnership and the North Carolina Arts Council, will be launched that same week. Workshop participants will learn how to submit music festivals and events for promotion on the site and will receive a toolkit to facilitate the marketing of traditional mountain music not only in their local area, but also throughout the region.
“We’ve spent the past year listening to our musicians, festival operators and music venue owners, plus tourism partners who realize the value of our music to the region’s economy,” said Angie Chandler, executive director of the Blue Ridge National Heritage Area Partnership. “The success of the Blue Ridge Music Trails will be built around a grassroots marketing program. This workshop will help everybody get on board who wants to be a part of this exciting program.”
The foundation for the Blue Ridge Music Trails of North Carolina project is a guidebook of the same name that was released by UNC Press last April. Written by folklorist Fred Fussell, the book highlights 60 venues throughout 29 counties in Western North Carolina, giving historical background and musician profiles. The book is available online at www.blueridgeheritage.com and in bookstores and area visitor centers.