Ninth Annual White Lightning Trail Festival this Saturday

Published 3:38 pm Thursday, September 19, 2019

Named one of the Top 20 Events in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society, the White Lightning Trail Festival will celebrate its ninth year in the community this Saturday from 10:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Held each year in Cumberland Gap, Tenn., the White Lightning Trail Festival continues to grow. This year, the festival will feature Emily Ann Robert’s from NBC’s The Voice. Roberts placed second on Team Blake against winner Jordan Smith.

For the first time ever, the festival will include tethered hot air balloon rides.

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Each year the festival continues traditions such as the cruise-in car show, 5K run with Servolution and LMU’s Physician Assistant Program, performances by local cheer and dance teams and a cornhole tournament. Servolution will be hosting a Duck Derby, and they will also host a dog parade along with LMU’s Veterinary School.

“It’s going to be a great day,” Claiborne Economic Partnership Director Karyn Clark said. “We hope that everyone in the community comes out for a great day of fun with lots of food, demonstrations, vendors and so much more.”

Emily Ann Roberts, who has a new hit single “Someday Dream” will perform at 5 p.m. Homesteader Inc. is sponsoring the concert, so there will be no charge.

There is something for everyone at the White Lightning Trail Festival.

Entertainment of all genres play throughout the days of the festival, with local musicians highlighted. Berkau Park in Cumberland Gap is the center of entertainment and many of the presentations. Dancers and other entertainers can be seen in the street as well.

In addition to the numerous activities, food vendors as well as arts and crafts vendors set up along the streets of Cumberland Gap. Everything from handcrafted jewelry, handwoven baskets to handspun yarn can be found at the festival.

From the Civil War to modern day America, The White Lightning Trail Festival tells the story of those rugged, self-reliant people that made this area the topic of movies and gave birth to one of America’s fastest growing sports, stock car racing.

The White Lightning Trail, which begins in Knoxville, Tenn., travels through eight other counties including Anderson, Union, Campbell, Claiborne, Grainger, Jefferson, Knox, Hamblen and Cocke. These communities share a rich heritage that are on display during the festival.

To find out more, go to and choose “events.” You can also find them on Facebook at White Lightning Trail Festival. You may also call the office of the Claiborne Economic Partnership at 423-626-4149.