Things to Do in Asheville This Weekend -- January 15-17, 2021

Winter Skyline

As you make your plans, you may be asking, "What is open in Asheville?" or "What are things to do during my visit?"

We know you may have questions about visiting Asheville during the Coronavirus pandemic. For answers to frequently asked questions, check out our Asheville FAQ page.

Below, you'll find ideas for things to do in Asheville. Also, check out our list of open businesses in Asheville.

Please remember to bring and wear your mask. Masks are required statewide inside public places, and masks are required outdoors where social distancing isn't possible.

Asheville area accommodations are taking reservations. Utilize our easy-to-use search feature to check room availability and rates

Want to enjoy Asheville from home? Explore our guide to virtual experiences and virtual events.

Here are ideas for what to do this weekend:

40th Annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration (virtual)

January 15-19, 2021

The 2021 Asheville/Buncombe County celebration of the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. shifts to YouTube. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is January 18.

Four days of virtual events are free to the public and will showcase the Asheville area's historical celebrations such as the Candlelight Service, Peace March and Rally, and the well-known Prayer Breakfast. The President of the MLK Association, Dr. Oralene Simmons, will be the Prayer Breakfast keynote speaker.

Please visit the Asheville MLK Association website for a schedule of events and link to the organization's YouTube channel.

A show during the Fringe Arts Festival in Asheville, North CarolinaAsheville Fringe Arts Festival (virtual)

January 17-24, 2021

The Asheville Fringe Arts Festival brings innovative theater, dance, spoken word and performance arts to venues throughout town. This multiple venue festival provides artists with opportunities to explore the edges of their work.

In 2021, the Festival offers up a (mostly virtual) array of performances, films, installations, parties, and random acts. Some of the virtual experiences include "talk-backs" or interactive components. Most of the virtual shows will take place between January 20-24.

The Festival kicks off virtually on Sunday, January 17 with a live virtual party. The party is free and includes comedy with Moira Goree, Fringe trivia, special guests, and a costume party (plus chat opportunity) for virtual attendees.

Learn about more shows — from workshops and a dance film night to the return of Poetry Cabaret, and much more — and purchase tickets at AshevilleFringe.org.

Asheville Restaurant WeekMake your plans for Asheville Restaurant Week

January 19-25, 2021

Enjoy Asheville's tastiest cuisine during Asheville Restaurant Week, taking place January 19-25, 2021. Savor the fresh, locally-sourced meals that have earned Asheville the designation as one of the top ten food and wine destinations in the United States.  

Participating restaurants will provide special menus or pricing. In 2021, many restaurants will be reimagining Asheville Restaurant Week with takeout specials.

See our guide to Asheville Restaurant Week for answers to frequently asked questions and for a list of participating restaurants.

Please note that in accordance with state and local social distancing guidelines, Asheville restaurants are operating at 30 percent capacity.

Shopping

Head to one of Asheville's shopping districts including downtown, Biltmore Village and the River Arts District to discover unique, one-a-kind finds. Please remember that you'll need to wear a mask to shop. 

Go for a hike

Winter Hiking at Black Balsam Knob Near Asheville, N.C.Feel the brisk mountain air with a refreshing hike. In late fall and winter, you’ll notice fewer hikers on the trails -- making it easier for you to find your zen. In addition, see the best views of the year thanks to leafless trees and clear blue skies.

Here are our picks for the best winter hikes in Asheville.

Discover Asheville's history on the Asheville Urban Trail

Lovers of art, history and architecture will enjoy the 1.7-mile self-guided, downtown Asheville walking tour: The Asheville Urban Trail. On the Asheville Urban Trail you'll find 30 historical stations to explore. And, along the way are many local shops.