Trail Days 2017 Schedule




Ride Board at The Place (hard copy), and on Facebook at Offer a ride, get a ride!

6am – 10am: At One Way Ministry -  All You Can Eat $5 Pancake Breakfast! 

7am: The Damascus Volunteer Fire Department will be serving a breakfast fudraiser at the Fire Station.

8am: La Sportiva would like to invite you to drop the pack and head out for a nice jog along the Appalachian Trail! Try out some demo shoes and discuss the route. Light refreshments will be provided afterwards. 

8-10am: Birding by Ear – Lesson on birding by sound. Take a stroll along the trail and listen for bird songs as a method for identification. Meet at the Blue Ridge Discovery Center Booth at 8am.

8am-12pm: Trail Days Ministries Welcome & Information Tents at various locations throughout town.

8am-2pm: Medical Team, foot washing & foot massages, free socks from Farm to Feet (while supplies last) in the parking lot at First Baptist Church.

8am- 4pm: Small supplies ministry on the front porch of One Way Ministry.

8am-4pm: "Pickin’ and a Grinnin’ on the Front Porch with Tuck" at One Way Ministry (come play your favorite instruments).

8am– 4pm: Mobile shower units across from One Way Ministry & at the Town Pool – Trail Days Ministry Team.

8am-10pm: Charging stations at One Way Ministry.

9-10:15am: at the United Methodist Church - 36,000 Miles of Trail Stories – Be inspired, entertained, and/or agitated by 17-time AT hiker, Dr. Warren Doyle.

9-10:30am:  Trail Dreams presented by Brad ‘Old Buzzard’ Cook.  How the solace of nature and the dream of hiking “The Trail” altered and saved a life.  Explore the physical, psychological, spiritual, and societal effects and benefits derived from an active participation in the natural world.  Be inspired to act on the goal of reuniting our children with this crucial piece missing from their lives today. At the Old Mill Conference Room.

9am - noon: Damascus Farmers Market, located under the red canopy at Damascus Motor Sales.

9am-12pm: at One Way Ministry - hair cuts & sewing repairs.

9am-1pm: Damascus Library activities - charging stations, board games, coloring tables, sidewalk art, and trivia with hikers.

9:30-11:30am: Stop by the Farm to Feet tent and share your thoughts with us on a video about the Appalachian Trail, Outdoor Recreation, Public Lands and Conservation. All participants will receive a pair of Farm to Feet Damascus Hiking Socks (while supplies last).

10am-5pm:  FREE gear repair - Manufacturer Representatives will be set up at the Tent City parking lot to assist hikers with equipment repairs, gear advice and specialized services.

10am-5pm: at the Tent City parking lot -Self-service gear wash station provided by BACKPACKER, NIKWAX, and SOLOMON.

10am-?: at the Tent City parking lot - Full-service gear wash station provided by BACKPACKER, NIKWAX, and SOLOMON.  This will be first-come-first-served and based on the inventory of "loaner" boots.  Hikers will be able to drop off their boots in the AM, walk away with a pair of "loaners" for the day and then return in the afternoon to get their clean/waterproofed boots back.

10am-10pm: Church open with snacks and drinks on the porch, plus youth Fundraiser – all you can eat pancakes for $5.00 in the church. At One Way Ministry.

10am-11pm:  The Damascus Old Mill will provide FREE Shuttle Service around Town!  Look for the white shuttle van at posted shuttle stops.

10-12:30: Damascus High School Alumni Reunion at the Rock School Auditorium - Come join the dwindling number of those lucky enough to have attended and/or graduated from the Old Rock School in Damascus!  Great opportunity for a meet and greet with many who only made it back “Home” for Trail Days Weekend.

10am-2pm: Fly Casting and More! Tommy Cook, of the Virginia Creeper Fly Shop, will be available to assist in casting, insect life (entomology), and other areas of fly fishing. Everyone is welcome to stop by, at the river bank behind the AT shelter at the Southern end of the Town Park!

10:30-noon: At the Damascus United Methodist Church - Challenges to Appalachian Trail long-distance hiking experience.  A moderated general discussion on: thru-hikes; section hikes; day hikes; rules and regulations; increased use; hiker behavior and fees + permits.

11am-noon: Stop by the Farm To Feet tent for a book signing with Jennifer Pharr Davis!

11am until sold out: Support the Veterans Memorial of Damascus! The Veterans Memorial Committee will be serving Texas style Barbecue at the Veterans Memorial on Saturday at the south end of the park. Ribs, Pulled Pork, and Chicken! All proceeds go to construction and maintenance of the Memorial. Visit us on Facebook @ Veterans Memorial of Damascus. Come on by and enjoy the best BBQ in the south!

11am: Foraging for Edibles on the Trail, with Ben Casteel at The Damascus Library.

11am-11:30am: Life After Long Distance Hiking:  Simplicity. Meachele ‘Mothership’ Montgomery will be sharing how long distance hiking can become an addiction and how to cope with the dramatic lifestyle change that can take place.  She will share her experiences of hiking the Appalachian Trail, Camino de Santiago, and Colorado Trail. And how she and other women can continue to explore and create new experiences. At the Town Hall.

11am–1pm: Local Artisan Demonstrations at the Damascus Library. including Whittlers, So Happy Quilters, and Knitting for the Homeless.

11:30am-1pm at Damascus Old Mill: Beyond the Road to Suches. The inspirational journey of a mother and her five children who thru-hiked all 2,160 miles of the AT together.

12:15-1:30: at the Damascus United methodist Church - How Has AT Thru-hiking Changed Over the Last 40 Years – Talk and discussion moderated by Dr. Warren Doyle.

12:30-2:30: The Trail Days Committee hosts Live Music by Woody and the String Pullers at the Town Park Gazebo.

1pm: Free hotdogs in the parking lot of Sundog Outfitter prior to the hiker parade, sponsored by Sundog Outfitter and Kelty.

for Billville Camp: This year's theme is Irish, dress in a theme for the parade! 

1:30pm: Parade vehicles line-up along Orchard Hill Rd., and hikers in front of Sundog Outfitter/Mojo’s/Subway.

2:00pm: Trail Days Annual Hiker Parade! From Douglas Dr. to Town Park. (Reminder – NO water balloons, but super soakers are very much encouraged! Please do not spray anyone preceding the hikers, including those in uniform such as the Honor Guard and Police, or other parade participants such as trail maintenance clubs, beauty queens, and scout troops... unless they have a water gun too!)

2:00-4:00pm: Stop by the Farm to feet tent and share your thoughts with us on a video about the Appalachian Trail, Outdoor Recreation, Public Lands and Conservation. All participants will receive a pair of Farm to Feet Damascus Hiking Socks (while supplies last).

2:45: Announcement of winners in the Damascus Rocks painting competition, at the Gazebo in the town park.

3:00: Annual Trail Days Auction in the Town Park - hosted by Damascus Realty. Gear, rafts and more!  All proceeds go to benefit “The Place” (donation Hostel ran by the First Methodist Church of Damascus).  Donations are accepted anytime, but preferred by 5pm on Friday; please bring donation items to the Auction Trailer in the park. For more information, contact /504-343-3734 and check out the webpage

3-4pm: at the Town Hall - The Diary of Trudy the Trail Terrier (film). The true and inspirational tale of the smallest dog to have hiked the AT. 

3:30pm: Sign up for the Hiker Talent Show at the Town’s Information/t-shirt tent.

3:30 in Town Park: Stop by the Granite Gear booth (vendor space #203 & 204) at any time and grab a Trail Name Tag to be entered for the Ultimate Raffle! Must be present to win. 

3:30-5pm: at the Damascus United Methodist Church - A Thru-Hiker Recovery Program by Jennifer Pharr Davis, author, speaker and former record holder. When the journey comes to an end you can still weave the trail into your everyday life, including your work and relationships. 

4pm: At the Town Park Gazebo – Trail Days sponsor recognition.

4pm-5pm: At the Town Hall - "Hike smarter, not harder," a workshop. Backpacking tips from Cesar Becarra.

4:15pm: At the Town Park Gazebo - Hiker Talent Show

5-6pm at the Damascus United Methodist Church: Concert – Come hear budding folk artist Brew Davis (Jen’s husband) sing some of his original folk songs, including one on the Lost State of Franklin!

5:15-6:15pm:  at the Town Hall - The Appalachian Trail Expeditions with Warren Doyle– Find out about past, present and future expeditions up the entire trail.

5:30pm:  in Tent City - Washboard Hoe-Down-Throw-Down! BACKPACKER’s Randy Propster will be hosting a washboard and wash tub jam session where the crowd awaiting the Ultimate Gear Giveaway can be entertained by, and participate in, (allowing cheers to determine the winner of) the best washboard band contest.

5:45pm: at the Backpacker booth at the Tent City parking lot - Backpacker hosts its annual Ultimate Gear Giveaway featuring thousands of dollars worth of gear from the top brands in the outdoor industry!

1/2 hour after the Ultimate Gear Giveaway, Billville will host Billville Useless Gear Contest, with prizes, at the Billville Camp in Tent City. 

6-8:30pm: at the Town Park Gazebo - The Trail Days Committee hosts Live Music by Jackdaw’s 7!                                    

7-10pm: Snacks and the movie “War Room” at One Way Ministry.

7:15-7:45pm: Contra Dance beginners' workshop at the Rock School Auditorium. Come learn the basics so you can strut your stuff later!

8-11pm: FREE Contra Dance at the Rock School Auditorium. Music by Wheel House. Callers are AT thru-hikers Warren and Terry Doyle.

9-11pm: at the Town Park Gazebo - The Trail Days Committee hosts Live Music by Virginia Ground!



Ride Board at The Place (hard copy), and on Facebook at Offer a ride, get a ride!

8am: Hardcore Hikers that are signed up for Whitetop Mountain work project will meet at Soul's Harbor Church (919 S. Shady Ave), for transport to Whitetop. They will camp and have dinner at Beartree Campground then be transported to Whitetop Monday, May 22, to continue working. Monday evening they will eat and camp at Beartree again, and Tuesday will be transported back to various points along the AT. 

10:30-noon:  Trail Days Community Worship Service at the Gazebo in Town Parkled by Trail Days Ministries.

11am-noon: Roman Catholic Mass at the Rock School Auditorium with Celebrant Reverend Kevin L. Segerblom, Pastor of St. Anne Catholic Church, Bristol, VA. (Confession available before and after Mass).

1:00-4:00pm: Free concert in the park, featuring Wise old River!

1:30pm: Free northbound and southbound shuttles leave One Way Ministries (for Erwin and Bland) – Sign up at One Way