Mountain Gateway Museum Expands 4th of July Ice Cream Social

OLD FORT, NC – The Mountain Gateway Museum & Heritage Center in Old Fort is expanding its usual Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social this 4th of July to include family games with prizes, a cakewalk, and longer hours, in addition to the free ice cream, watermelon slices, and live bluegrass music usually offered.

The MGM Farmers’ Market also will be open on July 4th with local farmers selling their goods from 2:30 to 6:00 p.m. on the museum’s grounds at the intersection of Catawba Avenue and Water Street in Old Fort.
The museum’s staff and members of its Friends group annually host the Ice Cream Social on the 4th of July to honor local military veterans and to express gratitude to the community for its continuing support of Mountain Gateway Museum.

This year, the event will begin at 12:00 noon—two hours earlier than usual—and will feature fun-filled family games, such as a cornhole toss, three-legged race, hula-hoop contest, water balloon toss, and watermelon seed-spitting contest. The games will be held at stations around the museum’s two late-1800s log cabins. Small prizes will be awarded to the winners of each game.

The cakewalk, featuring home-baked cakes prepared by members of the Old Fort Extension and Community Association, will begin at 1 p.m. around the museum’s outdoor fountain. Cost to participate is $1 per person, and each round will be limited to 10 people. Seven rounds will be played with one cake to be awarded at the end of each round.

Beginning at 2 p.m., Mountain Gateway Museum’s staff and volunteers will begin serving scoops of free vanilla ice cream (with a variety of toppings) and slices of watermelon at the museum’s gazebo. The food will be served on a first-come, first-served basis until the start of the Town of Old Fort’s annual 4th of July Parade at 4 p.m. — or until supplies run out, whichever comes first.

Possum Creek, a local bluegrass band that leads a free music jam most Sunday afternoons at Mountain Gateway Museum, also will perform on July 4th from 2 to 4 p.m. on the museum’s front porch. The public is invited to bring a lawn chair or spread a blanket on the ground to sit and enjoy the food and music, and to view the parade, which will proceed from Old Fort Elementary School down Catawba Avenue past the museum and turn right onto East Main Street.

The MGM Farmers’ Market, begun in May and organized by the Mountain Gateway Museum and the Old Fort Community Forum with the sponsorship of StockWild Kitchen, Silver’s Specialties, TAG Contracting Inc., and Greybeard Realty, is open every Thursday, rain or shine, from 2:30 to 6 p.m. at the museum.
Farmers are now selling fresh, locally grown or produced vegetables, herbs, honey, eggs, beef, and other edible products, as well as heirloom seeds and plant starts. Additional vendors are expected, and invited, to join the market as more varieties of fruits, vegetables, and flowers come in season. The market will continue every Thursday throughout the summer until Oct. 3.

For more information about MGM’s 4th of July Old-Fashioned Ice Cream Social, the MGM Farmers’ Market or other programs and exhibits at the museum, please call 828-668-9259 or visit the website at .


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