New Highland County Businesses are Ready to Shine During the 2024 Maple Festival

Highland County is a growing and happening place. We love to embrace our sleepy little town aesthetic, but our residents don’t go into hibernation between Maple Festivals. In fact, they have been really busy lately! 


Here’s Chris Swecker, Executive Director of the Highland County Chamber of Commerce, to tell us more about the additions to Highland County that have happened since last March:


“You might notice this year as you go around Highland County that there are a lot of new businesses to explore, which we’re super excited about, to add even more diversity and things to check out as you plan your adventures and travel our country roads. 


Hazy Hollow Farm just east of McDowell will feature working cattle farm tours. 


The Charles Pinkney Jones Museum on Main St. in Monterey will be open, and just down the street the 3rd Space and Art on Main will host artist demonstrations along with juried art from Highland County residents. 


Close by to there, children can also enjoy gemstone mining for treasures while parents browse local artisan goods at The Rock Shop. 


And at the Monterey intersection of Routes 220 and 250, you can shop at the grocery store of The Highland Roots Market, enjoy open house tours of the newly renovated Ernie’s Market, that will now be called The Highlander. Or you can view the new event space behind the Monterey Inn’s local lodging and dining experiences – and that place is called The Barn.”


Many of these businesses have been recipients of grants from both within and outside of Highland County. One such program is the Highland EDA Grant Incentive Program. The purpose of the Highland EDA Grant Incentive Program is to encourage the growth and success of small businesses located in Highland County.  Grant funds, typically in a range of $2,000 – $5,000 per business, are for the purpose of assisting with start-up or expansion expenses.  


Highlanders like to support local, so incentives and grants that allow for established residents to start new businesses help to feed and support the community as a whole. 


Check out these new businesses and some of the ones that have been around for a while, during your visit to the 2024 Highland County Maple Festival. We’re so glad you’re here!

Story By


Brit Chambers

Brit Chambers is a resident of Highland County, Virginia and a news reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio. She loves living in a small town and relishes the outdoor adventures and community feeling that Highland has to offer. Brit has a background in journalism, marketing, and public relations and spends her free time reading good books, baking sourdough bread, and hiking with her family.

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