Single Bull Elk calling a bugle sound.

The “Taste of the Wild” Dinner which takes place on Friday, Sept. 13 at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds is the kickoff event for the 2019 Smoky Mountain Elk Fest.

Tickets for the “Taste of the Wild” Dinner are now on sale. This is a limited ticket event with all ticket sales being pre-sold and limited to 250 people. The price of the ticket is $40 per person and the menu will feature a game, a fowl and a fish entree. In addition to dinner there will be live music and a Silent Auction.

Proceeds from the “Taste of the Wild” Dinner will go to fund Elk programs and projects that benefit elk management and habitat within Haywood County and the Qualla Boundary. Tickets can be purchased online at and click on the link for Taste of the Wild Tickets or call the Haywood County Visitor Center at 828-944-0761.

The Smoky Mountain Elk Fest will take place on Saturday, Sept. 14 at the Maggie Valley Festival Grounds from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Elk Fest is a celebration of the reintroduction of the elk to Western North Carolina. The event is a family friendly education-based festival with a strong focus on conservation of elk and elk habitat.

In addition to the elk related other highlights of the Elk Fest will be live entertainment featuring the Cherokee Indian Dancers, the J. Creek Cloggers, the Maggie Valley Band, Ol’ Dirty Bathtub, Kaitlin Baker, Jordan Brooker and headliner Andy Griggs. Also part of the event will be wildlife artists, outdoor adventure demonstrations, story tellers, lots of kid’s activities, timber sports exhibition, trout race, bugling contest, craft & food vendors and the Elk photo contest winners and a NASCAR exhibit featuring Richard Childress Racing.

We invite you to come out and enjoy a day of family fun, entertainment, hands on experiences, demonstrations and more! Tickets for the Elk Fest are $5 for adults, children 12 and under are free.

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