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Appalachia

Author and television travel expert Tamela Rich loves the Appalachian Region. Generations of her maternal family worked the coal mines of Kentucky and West Virginia. Scroll down for stories and travel ideas.

Appalachian Coal Heritage Tourism: Yes, This is Important

This week in my TV interview, I highlighted some “Coal Heritage Tourism Sites” in Virginia, West Virginia and Kentucky, where the mining industry provided not only income, also a way of life to its workers and extended communities. Why is this important and interesting? Why in the world would you …

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Appalachian Music Trails: Destinations in the Blue Ridge Mountains

Music stage at Floyd General Store, Floyd, VA

Music is an easy way to celebrate Appalachian culture. All American music can be traced to Appalachia. That’s where the cultural blend of European and African musical and rhythmic forms came together. Everything from jazz, old-time country music and Dixieland, to Cajun, soul, R&B, and rock ‘n’ roll, is a product of Appalachia’s cultural fusion. …

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Appalachian Roots Music: What’s with the Banjo?

We will visit the Blue Ridge Music Center and learn the history of bluegrass music on the Appalachian Mountains and Music Motorcycle Tour

I never learned to like bluegrass music as a child of the 1970’s. After all, we had the Rolling Stones, The Who, and Fleetwood Mac on the AM/FM dial so who needed that old timey stuff? (How ironic,the words “AM/FM dial” when talking about old timey stuff). And why were banjos …

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Appalachian Mountains and Music Motorcycle Tour with Wayne Henderson

In addition to the best motorcycle roads in Appalachia, my guests will enjoy two bluegrass concerts

There are lots of motorcycle “bucket list rides” in Appalachia, especially the Blue Ridge province. As a matter of fact Motorcycle Roads website ranks 30 of the top 100 motorcycling roads in America in the region. Many of these top roads are in the Blue Ridge province where my Appalachian Mountains & Music Motorcycle Tour (AMMMT) is …

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Tribute to My Hillbilly Grandparents: Appalachia Proud

Trapping was a winter way of life for boys I grew up with

I’ve been traveling the Appalachian Mountains all of my life, first in the family station wagon, then on my motorcycle. It’s gorgeous country, and the people who call it home are often misunderstood. I know this because they are my people. Growing up in central Ohio our county was bordered …

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West Virginia’s Miss Vickie: Let Go, Let God

Miss Vickie's famous Dodge 1950 Ram

My travels have blessed me with countless—countless—chance encounters. From a fry cook walking across America before he goes blind, to a homeless Vietnam veteran, and the people who shared their journeys with cancer with me, I have been blessed, and my character molded by each one of them. Perhaps none so much as Miss …

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Leaf Peeping and Waterfalls along the Blue Ridge Parkway

This year’s wet weather may have postponed your annual trip to the North Carolina Mountains and Blue Ridge Parkway to take in the fall foliage. Good news, you haven’t missed a thing. The dazzling colors will continue to descend from high elevations to low through the beginning of November. When to …

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Why Visit a West Virginia Coal Mine?

The Exhibition Coal Mine in Beckley, WV is worth a stop

We all do it. We drive the same stretch of road time and again, never stopping to see what those “little brown signs” are enticing us to visit along the way. With family in Ohio, I’ve traveled from Charlotte on I-77 through West Virginia at least 50 times. I was always …

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Explore Pocahontas County, West Virginia by Motorcycle

"Over Bonnie" mural in Marlinton, WV

There’s nothing like early spring in the Appalachian Mountains! Frosty mornings, sunny afternoons, and gorgeous sunsets that you can watch through trees whose branches aren’t yet covered in leaves all remind you that it’s great to be alive. Here’s a ride report from my trip through Pocahontas County, West Virginia …

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Charlotte to Chattanooga: A Four-Day Itinerary

The TN Aquarium is a great family attraction

Fox 46’s “Good Day Charlotte” producer asked me what I’d recommend to someone looking for a quick getaway from the Queen City if they had four days to travel. Easy answer: Chattanooga. I wrote about my first visit to Chattown last summer and this is a good time up update my report. …

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