Sycamore Shoals State Park

A first day of spring hike will be held on the trails of Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park on March 20.

ELIZABETHTON — Sycamore Shoals State Park has several events scheduled for March as spring returns to the historic location.

Along with several events at the park, there are guided tours planned for the two historic homes located outside the main campus at 1651 W. Elk Ave.

Guided tours of Sabine Hill, the Federalist-style home built by Mary Patton Taylor, widow of Brig. Gen. Nathaniel Taylor, in the days immediately after the War of 1812, at 2328 W. G St. are scheduled for several days in March. Tours will be held on March 6, 13, 20 and 27. All tours start at 11 a.m.

The guide for the tours is seasonal Interpretive Ranger Laura Ellis. The site has been described as one of the finest examples of Federalist architecture in Tennessee. During the tour, visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy the colorful and architecturally detailed interior, while learning about the historically prominent Taylor family.

Only portable toilets are currently available at the site. The tour includes the use of steps and a staircase. Admission is $9 for adults, $5 for students 7 to 17, and children 6 and under are admitted free.

To go on a tour, register online at the park’s website.

Guided tours of the Carter Mansion, the first wood frame house built in Tennessee at 1031 Broad St. by John and Landon Carter, are scheduled for March 11, 18, and 25. All tours begin at 1 p.m.

The Carters were some of the most prominent leaders of the community back when the house was built back in the late 1770s. The tour includes steps.

Admission is $9 for adults, $5 for students, 7 to 17, and children 6 and under are admitted free. To go on a tour, register online at the park’s website.

Several events are scheduled for the park.

“Freedom and Firelocks” will be presented at 10 a.m. on March 12. Admission is $5.

The program will explain how a frontier militia made up of farmers and hunters managed to win one of the most pivotal battles of the American Revolution. Ranger Jason Davis will present the program.

The evolution of firelock technology from matchlock, to flintlock, to percussion will be discussed. Davis will also compare the rifle and the musket.

The program will end with a bang with the firing of the flintlock musket. The group will meet at the Visitor Center lobby at 10 a.m.

The park will welcome spring with a “First Day of Spring” hike. Sycamore Shoals intern Lauren Thompson will guide the hike, which will feature outstanding trees and a guided walk along the Watauga River.

The tour will include a discussion on tree species identification by leaves and other parts of the tree, how ancestors used trees and other unique facts.

The event will include basic hiking tips, such as what is good to pack for a day hike, avoiding poison ivy, and what to wear on a hike.

The hike is free, preregistration can be done online at the park’s website.