Mountain Artisans presents   :








 $4.50 adults Children under 12 free

Hours 10-5 each day



Click here for  Featured Artists 

CLICK HERE FOR 2015  'Hard Candy Christmas '  EXHIBITORS



Small Beginnings :
     The Mountain Artisans Art & Craft Shows started in  Macon County in 1987.  Only 8 artisans exhibited at the first Christmas show in Franklin, NC.  We never imagined that, down the road, we were headed to the wonderful Ramsey Center on the Western Carolina University campus in Cullowhee,  North Carolina!
     It is a dream come true.  As the years have flown by, more and more artisans wanted a good place to sell their hand work and  joined us.  So many of our small businesses have been sent overseas, but there are no imports here.  The southern craftsman is alive and well in this area.  Many of the heritage crafts are handed down from the older generation.  The quilting, pine needle baskets, blacksmithing, clay art, folk dolls, corn shuck flowers, broom corn brooms, carved spirit sticks, and primitive furniture were inspired from past generations

You will find it all here.

     Mountain Artisans Art and Crafts Shows provide a marketplace for customers and artisans to meet.  It is an amazing collection under one roof.  You would have to visit dozens of  shows to find what I have gathered at one place.

     Cullowhee, North Carolina is home to the Western Carolina University.  On the campus is the Ramsey Center arena that boasts 18,000 square feet of climate controlled comfort for everyone.  It is home to the Catamount's basketball games but two times each year, they move over for our craft shows.  A great set up crew makes it all look easy for me. 

     Quaint Cullowhee Valley nestles off Highway 107 that runs up to Cashiers, North Carolina  from Sylva.  It is a stop off the Southern Highroads Trail  highway. All around are big, soft mountains. A foot bridge crosses the Cullowhee Creek to get to the show from the parking lot.  It is peaceful to your soul just  to be here.  


The show consists of artists inside and outside the building.

Outside Artists: The sidewalk and surrounding area leading up to the big Catamount door entrance has a sample of the quality artisans inside.  Look for the following exhibitors:      

Ornament glass balls with the WCU logo on them will be  sold outside .David Rathbone is chair for the project to  raise scholarship money for the children and staff (non- faculty ) employees. Buy several for a good cause.

      Come inside. The  entrance tunnel has some exciting exhibitors:

Each year, tree farmer, Larry Haskett and Evelyn Sanborn make the 'Hard Candy Christmas'  special with their  fresh wreaths and arrangements.  The A&E Tree Farm (located in Little Canada area) provides the big tree in the lobby that get us in the holiday mood. Would you like your picture taken peeping through a gigantic wreath for face book? It is being designed as we speak.  

The smell of freshly cut evergreens brings me back home when I was small . Then, my big sister, led the way to bring home the family  Christmas tree. It was always  a cedar scrub tree, picked from a neighbor's sagebrush field. She and I struggled through the briars and over the creek with our treasure. (I remember the year my brother came home from the War and brought  bubble lights!  Wow!) Decorating that annual tree  was unforgettable.  No matter how lean the year had been, we got a stocking with an apple, orange, and, of course, Hard Candy . The name of my show is centered around the tradition of our mountain Christmas  of celebrating Jesus' birth. Truly, the most wonderful holiday of the year !

 Meanwhile, back in Cullowhee, in October, I will head over to Barber Orchard to put back bushels of mixed apples in the cooler until the week of the show. Cameos, Delicious and Galas will  be piled into the big basket on the ticket table to share with our customers. Peppermint pieces and mixed sweets will be in the antique candy jar to enjoy, too. It is  my way of preserving  our mountain Christmas tradition.

    Arena : Our featured artist for the 28th  'Hard Candy Christmas' show is:

The pottery section includes :

Specialty foods and  sweets:    

Heritage Soap:

Doll Makers:

Other special crafts :

Are you looking for old fashioned rag rugs ? Rena Wilkins will be demonstrating this vanishing art right at the show. She will have a good selection of sizes and colors .

 Ashley Houston SacredWildernessBatiks will be having her hand crafted designs on clothing.

     We have attracted some wonderful  fine artists and painters for this show such as:

The fabric and Fiber art category is looking is looking good:

 The wood craftsmen at this show are some of the best around:

The knitters are in vogue right now:    


We have some of the most skilled jewelers from our area and far away:

 Thank you for making 'The Hard Candy Christmas'  your first stop for original arts and crafts at great prices! The American artists and craftsmen are still making  beautiful things with our hands and our hearts just for you! Come, have a mountain apple, a piece of hard candy and shop from the best. You are sure to catch the Christmas Spirit.