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Bele Chere Festival

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Downtown Bele Chere from Vance Monument

Bele Chere 2007 was held July 27-29, 2007 and is the Southeast's largest free street festival as well as a must-see event for the whole family. "Something for everyone" is the motto at Bele Chere, and boy does it deliver. Can't wait for next year? This year's qualities: for the food lover in the family, there were over 60 vendors and samples from the finest restaurants in Asheville, North Carolina. For the music connoisseur, more than 80 live bands! A budding artist in the family? There were over 200 craft and merchant booths. And everyone was entertained by the return of the Bele Chere Urban Challenge. Piqued your interest? Then read on.

Continuing to win over the hearts of festival goers for 27 years and counting, Bele Chere's secret is variety. Variety that is beautiful, demonstrated by the over 70 bands that played this year.

Official Bele Chere Festival web-site

Festival-goers were treated to styles as varied as Country, Blues, Folk, Mountain, Rock, Jazz, you name it. The local music scene was represented along with rising stars like Tinsley Ellis and Cowboy Mouth and national acts such as Shooter Jennings, Cracker, Train and way too many more to list here. Of course, the most anticipated musical moment this summer was the return of Asheville's own Gov't Mule! This kind of musical lineup was only rivaled in diversity only by one thing: Bele Chere's festival of food.

Asheville streets are packed
Just some of the over 350,000 happy
festival-goers at Bele Chere 2006

Greek, Mexican, Italian, Appalachian, Caribbean, Chinese, French - there's a whole world of cuisine at Bele Chere. These styles were represented by more than 60 food vendors, but that's not all. For a taste of the finest dishes Asheville has to offer, everyone enjoyed the menu samples provided by more than 20 of Asheville's top restaurants: Vincenzo's Ristorante & Bistro, Ed Boudreaux's Bayou Bar-B-Que, Doc Chey's Noodle House, and the Jerusalem Garden Café to name but a few. It is truly an unmissable culinary extravaganza.

No Bele Chere experience is complete without a visit to the Arts Park. 200 craft and merchant booths display a simply stunning array of artworks. Mediums include painting, mixed media, pottery, sculpture, photography, and more ensuring that no aesthetic desire is left unfulfilled. The best local and regional artists are represented making Bele Chere's Arts Park as unique as it is moving.

Perhaps no one was more moved at the 2006 Bele Chere Festival than BC Urban Challenge champion Patt Ridgeway. Bele Chere has always been prized for its innovation and this year is no exception. In addition to the 2nd annual BC Urban Challenge, Bele Chere lined up a unbelievable variety of special events and activities: The Skyriders! Acrobatic Trampoline Entertainment, Mutual of Omaha Wild Kingdom Adventure Tour, River Link Raft Rides, YES Interactive Rides, Inflatables and Games, The Children's Area and so so much more.

Of course, words can't do this tradition justice, so whether you're an Asheville native in search of an unforgettable weekend, an adventurer searching for excitement in the Southeast, or a tourist with a love of the arts and a healthy appetite, we hope you didn't miss out on Bele Chere 2007!

Official Bele Chere Festival web-site