Mountain Heritage Day remembers Steve Sutton

Steve Sutton performs at WCUMountain Heritage Day. Photo by Ashley Evans, WCU PR Office. 

Having performed everywhere from local front porches to the Grand Ole Opry, Steve Sutton, a bluegrass marvel, had an unparalleled impact on the evolvement of Appalachian music.

This year’s 43rd Mountain Heritage Day will remember Sutton and his contribution to the music scene with a special presentation on the Blue Ridge stage at 1 p.m.

Sutton was a regular attendee and performer at Mountain Heritage Day for 41 years. He passed away at the age of 60 on May 13, 2017.

“Steve was always selfless in giving himself and his music to Mountain Heritage Day and his alma mater,” said co-chair of the festival, Mark Haskett, in an email message. “He had established himself as an icon of Mountain Heritage Day, what it means and how it is shared. Everyone will miss his smile and his talent.”

Not only has Sutton’s presence been felt throughout the years at the popular festival, but the event has a strong connection of its own.

Director of special events, Stacy MacGregor said in an email message that Mountain Heritage Day links the past and present, and displays the spirit and resourcefulness of Western Carolina and the people who call the mountains home.

“It blends mountain tradition with all the festival favorites,” MacGregor said.

Locals, students, and visitors will gather for a day packed with music, games, food and much more starting at 10 a.m. There will be over 140 booths of regional arts and a diversity of ethnic food. Parking is free but come early for the best spots.