Appalachian Christmas at Lake Junaluska


LAKE JUNALUSKA, N.C. — All are invited to Lake Junaluska December 7-10 for Appalachian Christmas, a special festive event including three concerts and a craft show.

The Lake Junaluska Singers will return, under the direction of Mary Huff and Associate Director Kathy Geyer McNeil, to perform Handel’s Messiah and a special Christmas concert during Appalachian Christmas.

Handel’s Messiah is a baroque-era music composition by George Frideric Handel, composed in 1741-1742 and the Lake Junaluska Singers will perform the piece alongside a regional chorus and area musicians on Friday, December 8.

The Appalachian Christmas Craft Show will include more than 40 artisans exhibiting all hand-crafted items. The show is run by the Junaluska Woman’s Club and the profits go toward scholarships the Woman’s Club puts together for Lake Junaluska staff members every summer. All are welcome to attend the craft show on Saturday, December 9 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the Harrell Center.

The Cockman Family, will perform at 2 p.m. on December 9 in Stuart Auditorium. The group is known for their signature bluegrass-gospel sound, warm family atmosphere and an instrumental proficiency that will delight the audience. Appalachian Christmas festivities wrap up with a Christmas concert by the Lake Junaluska Singers on Saturday, December 9.

Members of the 16-voice ensemble will return from across the country to perform at Appalachian Christmas. Carols with audience participation, Appalachian Christmas songs, and poignant readings will round out the evening.

“We’ll be singing Christmas favorites like Ding, Dong, Merrily on High, The Holly and the Ivy, The Little Drummer Boy, O Holy Night, and Carol of the Bells,” said Mary Huff, director of the Lake Junaluska Singers.

A new kick-off event for those who purchase an Appalachian Christmas lodging package, Cookies & Carols, will take place on Thursday, December 7 at 7 p.m. in Lambuth Inn. Visitors will gather around the piano with noted Appalachian ballad singer Judy Rhodes, who will sing traditional Christmas carols with a "Celtic hillbilly" flare. Song sheets, hot tea, cider, cocoa and cookies will be provided.

“The heart of an authentic Appalachian Christmas is that moment when one family welcomes another to join them by the Christmas tree and share family-secret cookies and steaming mugs of cocoa,” said Mitzi Johnson, director of programming at Lake Junaluska. “That's the experience I wanted to re-create for our guests. What says Christmas better than gathering for singing in an inn nestled in the mountains on beautiful Lake Junaluska?”

The Appalachian Christmas lodging package includes lodging, meals, tickets to all three concerts, the Cookies & Carols event and two tickets to Christmas at Biltmore. Individual concert tickets are available for $23 reserved, $18 general admission.

Call 800-222-4930 to book or visit for additional information. Lake Junaluska is a place of Christian hospitality where lives are transformed through renewal of soul, mind and body. For more information about Lake Junaluska, visit

Appalachian Christmas Events

*Cookies & Carols
Thursday, Dec. 7 7-8:30 p.m.
Lambuth Inn Lobby

Handel's Messiah, featuring a local choir and orchestra Friday,
Dec. 8 7:30 p.m.

Appalachian Christmas Craft Show Saturday,
Dec. 9 9 a.m.-4 p.m.
Harrell Center Auditorium

The Cockman Family in Concert
Saturday, Dec. 9 2 p.m.

Lake Junaluska Singers in Concert Saturday,
Dec. 9 7:30 p.m.

All concerts are in Stuart Auditorium at Lake Junaluska.

*Event is only open to those on the Appalachian Christmas lodging package.

Resources for Vital Congregations



Lewis Center for Church Leadership

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Books

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Serve Your Neighbor

GBHEM Leadership Resources


Living Faithfully: Human Sexuality and the United Methodist Church

Englewood Book Review

Five Practices of Fruitful Congregations

Ted Talks: The Golden Circle

Ted Talks: The Power of Vulnerability

Ted Talks: The Price of Invulnerability

Design Thinking

Meditations on the Ministry of All Christians


Be A Disciple

A Disciple’s Path; A Guide for United Methodist

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Adult Christian Studies from the Wesley Ministry Network

Traveling Together: A Guide for Disciple Forming Congregations


Living As United Methodist Christians

Methodist Doctrine: The Essentials

Reclaiming our Wesleyan Tradition: John Wesley’s Sermons for Today

John Wesley Sermons: Anthology


Get Their Name

Evangelism & Theology in the Wesleyan Spirit

Canoeing the Mountains

Fresh Expressions

Fresh Expressions: Dinner Church

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: Reach New Disciples

Lewis Center for Church Leadership: 50 Ways to Reach People

Community: The Structure of Belonging


Institute for Emerging Issues

Congregations 4 Children


The Royce and Jane Reynolds Ministry Fund Grants

The Duke Endowment


The Appalachian District Church Vitality Team has been prayerfully seeking ways to help support you and the ministries of your local congregation during this COVID-19 pandemic. Together they have diligently researched and connected with others throughout the conference and our denomination to identify resources and offer them to you. We hope they will be helpful to you and bless you greatly in leading your churches and communities through this unprecedented time. We are very grateful to the District Vitality Team and other contributors for their great work on this resource.
This faithful team has created three documents, two of which you are receiving today. They include:

  • Family Home Worship – designed to help families establish a regular worship space within their homes as well as a time where they can worship together.
  • Tech Strategies – to help guide you in selecting effective tools and resources within your budget to best communicate in the digital world.

We believe these resources will be of great benefit to you. Also know that the District Vitality Team is available to answer any questions you might have in regards to the documents attached. If you have questions, you may email Rev. Howard Fleming at


  • Resources
Follow Jesus. Make Disciples. Transform the World.