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Media Room

Date: 7/18/2019

Dancing Bear Lodge Announces Vittles and Fiddles Weekend

The Dancing Bear Lodge and Appalachian Bistro are hosting The 2019 Appalachian Vittles & Fiddles Weekend, a three-day celebration of Appalachian cuisine, culture, and community. Incorporating the previous stand-alone event ‘Bacon at the Bear’, the new weekend long gathering will be an extension of that same culinary vibrance, with additional opportunities for guests to enjoy the sounds, sights, and culture of Appalachia.


Beginning with ‘The Bear Dance’ Friday evening, attendees can expect music, dancing, and dining with an evening true to pioneer culture. Saturday remains a staple in the refined Appalachian culinary community with ‘Bacon at the Bear’. Benefitting New Hope’s Children’s Advocacy Center, each ticket provides food, drink and music to guests and brings together thirteen of the region's top chefs to share unique dishes and incorporate Benton’s Bacon. Sunday will wrap up the weekend events with an elevated ‘Jonas Ridge Farmhouse Brunch’ with Brunch at the Bear favorites, bottomless mimosas, and a build-you-own Bloody Mary bar.


Mark and Sharon Oldham, owners of the Dancing Bear Lodge and Appalachian Bistro, have worked for years to provide refined Appalachian cuisine through an elevated dining experience. With award-winning Chef Shelley Cooper, the Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro in Townsend, TN has made that mark. For three days the first weekend in August, Dancing Bear welcomes guests with weekend accomodations and event packages, or for any of the three experiences between August 2nd - August 4th with individual event tickets.


THE BEAR DANCE | Friday, August 2nd

On Friday evening, August 2nd, the Appalachian Bistro is hosting The Bear Dance, an evening true to pioneer culture. Experience an authentic summer lamb roast and square dance, set to the tune of the Sleepy-Eyed John 5-piece Appalachian String Band and award-winning caller Leo Collins!


BACON AT THE BEAR | Saturday, August 3rd

Join us Saturday, August 3rd for the highly acclaimed 'Bacon at the Bear', featuring thirteen of the best regional chefs cooking their own personal dishes to benefit New Hope Children’s Advocacy Center. Presented by New Hope: Blount County Children’s Advocacy Center, each Chef will incorporate Benton’s Bacon and a common theme steeped in the roots of Appalachia.

Each ticket includes a bourbon or wine tasting session, presented by Knoxville Beverage; Annual silent auction to benefit New Hope; Artisan and farmer's exhibits on The Lawn; Live music by Humle Bob & the Engineers.

Meet the Chefs of 2019 Bacon at the Bear

Ashley Capps of Buxton Hall BBQ, Ian Boden of The Shack , Mike & Amy Costello of Lost Creek Farm, Travis Milton - Milton's at the Western Front, Shovel & Pick, & Simply Grand, Ryan Kline of Zambra & Catherine Kline, Kent Graham - Chef, Pit Master, Consultant, Chris Huerta of Relais & Châteaux, Erik Hoover of Cockeye BBQ, Renee Merritt of The Cork & Cleaver Gastropub, Alex Gass of The Walnut Kitchen, and Shelley Cooper of Dancing Bear Appalachian Bistro



To cap off the event, a Jonas Ridge Farmhouse Brunch will be held on Sunday, August 4th. Enjoy al fresco dining at our famous Appalachian Sunday Brunch, showcasing our wildly popular Brunch favorites, bottomless mimosas and a build-your-own Bloody Mary bar.


Tickets are available for all 3-days with weekend accommodations, or daily passes for each event separately. Townsend, TN locals may enjoy discounted pricing, and those who purchase the Weekender Packages will receive 10% of the total price of all three events and accomodations. 


Those interested in learning more about the Vittles & Fiddles Weekend events can view the webpage at or purchase tickets at