National park tips: There’s sweet music where the Blue Ridge Parkway meets Crooked Road

The Blue Ridge Music Center, in Galax, Va. on the Blue Ridge Parkway, features exhibits on the evolution of American folk music and frequent live performances.
(Christopher Reynolds / Los Angeles Times)

Attention, roots music people. If you’re anywhere in southern Virginia, your first good news is that you’re really close to the Blue Ridge Parkway, one of America’s greatest drives, and the Blue Ridge Music Center.

The center, in Galax, Va., has great exhibits on the region’s music history and frequent live shows.

The next good news is that if you head 50 miles northeast (and just a few miles off the parkway) to Floyd, Va., you can see the Floyd Country Store (great CD inventory and Friday night music) and learn about yet another tempting drive — the Crooked Road, a 333-mile Virginia music route that links folk landmarks past and present. It’s not part of the the park system, but it’s a tasty slice of Americana.

Here’s what I found on America’s favorite country road, the Blue Ridge Parkway »


Our reporter drove all 469 miles of the Blue Ridge Parkway, which runs through Virginia and North Carolina.

In honor of this year’s National Park Service centennial, the Travel section is posting 100 park travel ideas and tips based on trips staff travel writer Christopher Reynolds has taken, along with photo-op advice from Times photographer Mark Boster. We’ll post one per day through Dec. 31.

Follow Reynolds on Twitter: @MrCSReynolds

See travel videos by Reynolds from around the world.



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