Jackson County

Jackson County was established in 1851 and named after President Andrew Jackson. It borders about 45 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway and neighbors the Qualla Boundary, which features Harrah’s Cherokee Casino and other attractions including the outdoor drama, “Unto these Hills,” a story of the history and culture of the Cherokee people.

Jackson County is also recognized for its natural beauty. The Tuckaseigee River is considered a fly-fisherman’s paradise and provides opportunities for boating and other outdoor activities. The County’s beautiful scenery has also been the backdrop to many movies. The Fugitive, starring Harrison Ford and Tommy Lee Jones, and My Fellow Americans, starring Jack Lemmon and James Garner, were both filmed here. The wreckage from the train scene in The Fugitive can still be seen today on outbound train excursions from Dillsboro.

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Jackson Active Living

Natural Amenities

250px-lake_glenville_north_carolinaLake Glenville

Enjoy fishing, boating, or swimming at 3,500 feet above sea level. Visitors from all over come to play in this lakes 1,400 acres of clean water.


800px-lake_toxaway_225160614Lake Toxaway

With an area of 640 acres, it is the largest privately held lake in North Carolina and provides many opportunities for aquatic enjoyment.


wrn_summit01Waterrock Knob

This mountain is very popular among visitors because of its easy access from the Parkway.



mountain-sea trailMountains to Sea Trail

1000 mile trail stretching from the mountains to the Outerbanks of North Carolina. Currently, only about 530 miles is on trail, the rest are temporary routes along back roads.


Park and Recreational Facilities

rec-center-300x193Jackson County Recreation Complex

Gym, fitness room, aerobics room, personal training, homeschool PE, playgrounds, baseball fields, soccer fields, running trail, fishing pier, scenic pond, disc golf course, summer camps

88 Cullowhee Mountain Road
Cullowhee, NC 28723

cashiers-rec-center-300x193Cashiers/Glenville Recreation Center

Gym, fitness room, aerobics room, ball fields, basketball court, walking trail, playground, picnicking area, tennis courts

355 Frank Allen Road
Cashiers, NC 28717

markwatson_small03Jackson County Parks

Jackson County offers a variety of parks. Visit the website to the right for more information.



monteith parkMonteith Farmstead Park

16-acre multi-use park with an amphitheater, recreation area, public restrooms, walking trails


Town of Dillsboro
Dillsboro, NC 28725

sylvaparksTown of Sylva Parks and Recreation

The Town of Sylva has Poteet Park, Bryson Park, Bridge Park and Pinaccle Park.


Private Facilities

awaken-300x238Awaken Health & Fitness

Awaken offers a variety of exercise equipment, as well as personal training for its members.


18 Marsh Lily Drive
Dillsboro, NC 28725

great-smokies-300x224Great Smokies Fitness Smokies

The Center offers: Medically-based Wellness, Free Weights, Weight Machines, Racquetball, Group Fitness Classes and Personal Training.

414 Skyland Drive
Sylva, NC 28779

wildcat-300x225Wildcat Cliffs Fitness Center

Private fitness center with state-of-the-art fitness equipment, fitness classes, indoor heated pool, personal trainers and a tennis professional.

770 Country Club Drive
Highlands, NC 28741

Jackson Healthy Eating

Farmers Market

img_5023Jackson County Farmers Market

This year round farmers market is open every Saturday from 9am to 12pm. From April through October, they are located in the parking lot next to Bridge Park and November through March, they are located at the Community Table on Central Street. Railroad Avenue Sylva, NC 28779 828.631.3033

whhe-farmers-marketCashiers Tailgate Market

Visitors come to this market for the organic produce, fresh meats, and delicious baked goods every Saturday from 9am to 12pm. Cashiers Valley Community Center Cashiers, NC 28717 828.743.5106 mwdivider

Community Gardens

IMG_5032Sylva Community Garden

This garden is grown by the community for the community. The organic produce grown is given to the Community Table, a nonprofit organization dedicated to providing nutritious meals to those in need. 23 Central St Sylva, NC 28779 828.586.6782

CullowheeCullowhee Community Garden

A donation based garden created by the Jackson County Public Health Department. The produce grown here is free of synthetic pesticides and fertilizers. 65 South Painter Rd. Cullowhee, NC 28723 mwdivider

Local Food Providers

city lights2City Lights Cafe

City Lights Cafe offers dairy free and vegetarian options on their daily menu. They also use locally sourced and organically grown ingredients in many of their dishes. 3 East Jackson Street Sylva, NC 28779 828.587.2233

soulinfusionSoul Infusion

Their menu options include fresh, house-made soups, sandwiches, and desserts. Vegan options are available as well. In addition to their delicious menu, they also offer over 60 different types of teas served either hot or cold. 628 East Main Street Sylva, NC 28779 828.586.1717

guadalupe 2Guadalupe Cafe

A farm-to-table eatery with a goal to provide their customers with the freshest and best tasting food possible. 606 West Main Street Sylva, NC 28779 828.586.9877

LULUsLulu’s on Main

Lulu’s caters to everyone; meat eaters, vegetarians, and vegans. They also take pride using the freshest local produce available when creating their meals and desserts. 612 West Main Street Sylva, NC 28779 828.586.8989

mad batterMad Batter Food & Film

Our family-friendly theater is housed in one of the most historic buildings in Jackson County, and we specialize in pizza, tri-tip, vegetarian options and more. Love and local ingredients are in our food; we make all our meals from scratch, and our breads are always freshly homemade. 617 West Main Street Sylva NC, 28779 828.586.3555 mwdivider

Healthy Corner Stores




Bryson’s Farm Supply and Natural & Organic Food Store

1552 East Main Street Sylva, NC 28779

Sylva Market



balsam-gardensBalsam Gardens

Balsam Gardens, LLC is a small farm located in Jackson County, NC. We started farming full time in the spring of 2009 and are growing by leaps and bounds every year. Our farm is dedicated to sustainable and ecological growing practices, producing fresh vegetables, flowers and a variety of pasture raised, hormone and antibiotic free meat. Our role as ecological farmers is to provide the opportunity for plants and animals to thrive by expressing their own unique characteristics in a natural environment. We enable a chicken to be a chicken, an earthworm to be an earthworm, and a beet to be a beet.

Jackson Tobacco-Free Living

Success Stories

Jackson County Government buildings are smoke and vape free! 

On February 19th Jackson County Board of Commissioners passed a vote in favor of making all Jackson County government buildings smoke free. This new ordinance states that all buildings either owned or rented by Jackson county will be smoke-free both inside and in all areas “near or close to” the building. In addition to banning cigarette smoking, the new ruling will also ban electronic cigarettes from the designated areas. Electronic cigarettes, which are sometime called e-cigarettes, vapes, vape pens or hookah pens, are advertised as a “healthier” alternative to smoking regular cigarettes.  They are battery operated devices which contain a liquid solution made of aerosol, and different combinations of flavoring and nicotine. Read the complete story here: https://mountainwise.org/jackson-county-takes-action-protects-lungs/

A Tobacco-Free College Experience

In January of 2013, Southwestern Community College became a tobacco free-campus!

Tobacco-Free Parks

In April of 2013, the Jackson County Board of Commissioners approved a tobacco-free parks ordinance, making all eight county parks tobacco-free. The success of this ordinance was due to the partnership between MountainWise, the Jackson County Department of Public Health, the Jackson County Parks and Recreation Department, and HiTop ASSIST.

Department of Social Services

In July of 2013, the Department of Social Services became a smoke-free facility.

Multi-Unit Housing

MountainWise, in collaboration with HiTop ASSIST, is looking for opportunities to partner with River Park Apartments in Sylva, NC as they implement a smoke-free policy (effective January 2014).    Assistance could include outreaching to property managers, linking managers with toolkits, conducting surveys on residents’ tobacco usage and preferences, and/or purchasing smoke-free signage.