Many of the young millennials who work in Winston-Salem’s hip and vibrant Innovation Quarter …the district focused on research, business and education in biomedical science, information technology and more…know that the small town of King is their jumping off point for their active weekend pursuits. Located an easy 18 minute drive up NC Hwy 52 north of downtown Winston-Salem, King is the front door to some of the state’s best outdoor activities. Pilot Mountain is the most visible attraction as you see that iconic knob poke above the horizon before you ever reach King proper. Pilot Mountain provides multiple hiking opportunities for beginners as well as more experienced hikers. Rock climbing is allowed throughout the park, except for the pinnacle itself. For a day outdoors with a picnic offering unparalleled views of Winston-Salem, this park is especially remarkable in that no fee is charged for access. This wonderful park offers overnight camping among the rhododendrons waking to the cool mountain air and a trail beckoning. But this is not the only park or the only activity for the area.
View of Pilot Mountain and surrounding area
Hanging Rock State Park is an awesome 8,605 acres state park with enough variety sure to please any group. A scenic mountain lake is the center piece of this park and provides a sandy beach for sunning and cool mountain waters for swimming and canoeing. Twenty miles of hiking trails include big paydays with a waterfall at one end and scenic mountaintops vistas from other trails. You can access the Dan River for paddling or you may decide to spend a few nights in the park in a campsite or in one of the small cabins available for rent.
The recently completed playground was built at a cost of approximately $500,000 and entirely from local donations. It was designed from the start to be an inclusive playground for kids of any physical or mental ability.
Most any weekend morning you’ll find patrons at King Kitchen, purportedly the serving the best mountain breakfast around these parts, fueling up for a day of road-biking or mountain biking in the nearby country. King is the doorstep to an endless array of outdoor activities.
Lots is happening in the town of King itself every day of the week. In the summer, the King Summer Series begins which means the town will host an outdoor movie night or a live concert in the park each month. The amphitheater at Central Park is the comfortable and convenient venue for both. The concerts can run the gamut with the series concluding the season in September with a much-anticipated Beach Music Event.
Movie night happens once each month during the summer season. The free movie is shown at Central Park’s Amphitheater and invites everyone to bring a blanket and enjoy the summer.
If you are an active type and like to do things with your family and friends (and make new ones along the way) you’ll find King’s, almost famous, Adult Kickball League to be right up your alley. The first league was formed in 2019 and was fabulously popular and competitive. Open to every skill level the only order of the day is for everyone to have fun. The winners have bragging rights which they can air over a beverage at a local watering hole known as Castle Deli. With light fare, daily specials and an ample number of beers on tap, Castle Deli has become the spot for the after-party for all local events.
The Adult Kickball League kicked off in 2019 and will continue in 2020. Aside from creating great rivalries, it also provided an activity that the entire family could enjoy together.
The Travel Softball Tournament drew 1,000 spectators in 2019.
Softball too has become a big deal for King. Traveling Softball teams use the extensive fields at King’s Recreation Acres and travel great distances to compete during the summer and fall. In 2019, over 1,000 people showed up for the Travel Softball Tournament. Recreation Acres is also the site of one of the state’s most celebrated playgrounds. Built at cost of approximately half a million dollars…all raised from local donations…this wonderful playground is all inclusive as it was built for kids of any physical or mental ability.
King is also being discovered as a fabulous place to live for everyone from young millennials to retirees. Construction of several new home communities means that housing options abound from single-level, amenity-rich villas to new homes on large lots or small acreage tracts designed to the buyer’s specifications.
Park Place is a new boutique community of Villas and homes that offer single or two-level living, private courtyards and an extensive list of standard features. This community connects to Central Park via a private gated walkway.
Simply put, King has been known to the millennials and the active set for a long time as the accommodating jumping off point for the world of outdoor activities that lie just beyond town limits. From the cozy Wisteria Coffee Shop on Main Street to friends meeting up at the new beer den in Lowes Foods, King offers old-south small-town appeal with new south vibe.
The new Beer den at Lowes Foods is a popular gathering spot for those folks “doing their marketing”.
Novant Healthcare has two well-equipped medical facilities in King.
Please check the City of King website for more information and on status of events affected by Covid 19 restrictions. https://www.ci.king.nc.us/parksrecreation