About Mt. Airy, Surry, Caldwell, & Wilkes Co. Areas
Mount Airy is hometown to actor Andy Griffith and inspiration for the fictional “Mayberry” in the Andy Griffith Show. Visit the Andy Griffith Museum, Floyd’s Barbershop, Snappy Lunch, Opie’s Candy Store, Mayberry Soda Fountain, Wally’s Service Station, and the Mayberry Courthouse. Mount Airy is also home to the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History, which has several historical exhibits on the area.
Mount Airy is located in Surry County and only 10 minutes from the Blue Ridge Parkway. Located in the northwest party of Surry County is a notable peak, Cumberland Knob, which was the starting point of the construction of the Blue Ridge Parkway. Several events showcase the heritage of the region including the Mount Airy Fiddlers Convention held the first weekend in June, Mayberry Days to celebrate the Andy Griffith Show in the fall, and the Annual Autumn Leaves Festival showcases the area’s rich musical heritage, such as Old-Time, Blue Grass and Gospel performed by local musicians on the downtown stage. Surry County has also distinguished itself as one of North Carolina’s native wine regions – and is currently home to several wineries who are part of the Yadkin Valley Wine Region.
The County of Wilkes was created in 1777, effective February 12, 1778, and its history dates from pre-revolutionary times. The county was named in honor of John Wilkes, who was a member of the British Parliament and at one time Lord Mayor of London. Located in the beautiful foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains and the Brushy Mountain, Wilkes is host to acres of preserved park lands, miles of biking and hiking trails, eight designated birding sites, W. Kerr Scott Lake fishing and boating, river canoeing, and stocked trout streams.
Wilkes County is home to annual festivals such as Merlefest, Singing in the Foothills, Brushy Mountain Apple Festival, and Carolina In the Fall. The area features art galleries, historic museums, and racing at Wilkesboro Dragway, North Wilkesboro Historic Speedway, and the AMA lawnmower competition. It also features a first class Art Gallery and a live community theatre group known as Wilkes Playmakers.
Home to some of the country’s most famous furniture brands, Caldwell County is central to the area’s “20 miles of furniture” shopping outlets and stores. The county seat of Lenoir is perhaps best known for its furniture heritage, the birthplace of some of the most skilled and gifted craftsmen in the industry. With nearly 80 installations, Caldwell County has the largest collection of permanent public outdoor sculpture of any county of its population in the U.S. Visitors will experience the largest elevation change in North Carolina from 900 feet above sea level to 5,964 feet. A short drive from the city of Lenoir is the remote and rugged Wilson Creek, a federally designated “Wild and Scenic River.” Other must-see nature stops include Historic Happy Valley and Pisgah National Forest.