Little Tweetsie Getting New Track

Little Tweetsie Back on Track

Little Tweetsie lost her track in November after it was stacked in the garage for the winter and someone stole it. But, this will only slow her down temporarily. New Grass, fresh plantings, and new track means a completely new layout by summer.

Little Tweetsie

Little Tweetsie

We hope the friends, neighbors, guests and passers by will stop and enjoy Little Tweetsie this summer.

Built by John Barden over more than 10 years, Little Tweetsie has belonged to 3 people during her life. Traveling much of the east coast during that time. From the Carolinas, Tennessee and Virginia to Florida, Little Tweetsie has visited many tracks over the years and pulled everything from her own Little Tweetsie cars to 44 car freight trains. She has pulled passengers, adults and children alike, around short tracks of less than 1000 feet and large tracks that consists of miles of track. Like her full-size counterpart, she is a versatile live steam locomotive with lots of power and not even stolen track will stop her.

This Little Engines locomotive started life as a kit and received many years of loving construction and detailing before being purchased by Greg and Amy Gardner. In fact, many people have said the Little Tweetsie is one of the most detailed 1.5″ Scale locomotives on the east coast. Not only does she run on coal and steam, she has a steam whistle and can pull as much scale weight as has full size counterpart.

Come see Little Tweetsie run this summer, at Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast in Banner Elk, NC.

Bookmark our website and watch for a new calendar of events. We will be posting a running schedule for the summer. Also plan on attending the Banner Elk 4th of July Parade, where you are sure to see Little Tweetsie and her twin sister, the #190 Engine, which is also located in Banner Elk, NC. The two engines will be steaming their way down Main St in their home town.

Banner Haven & Banner Elk Railroad (BH & BERR) – Little Tweetsie

Little Tweetsie – BH & BERR

Little Tweetsie (Banner Haven & Banner Elk Railroad) is a 1.5″ Scale and 7.5″ Gauge coal-fired steam powered locomotive built by John Barden. Little Tweetsie runs on coal and steam just like her full-sized counterpart at Tweetsie Railroad Amusement Park.

Riding at Powers Mill Primitives

Riding at Powers Mill Primitives

This pint-sized version has run on tracks from Tennessee and Virginia to the Carolinas and Florida, pulling and many as 44 cars. Some cars weigh 200-300 pounds and this Little Engine is capable of pulling more than 4 tons on a level track. Generating up to 130 psi of usable steam power, the boiler and steam pistons can produce a great deal of power and propel the engine and engineer more than 30 mph.

The Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast Innkeeper, Greg Gardner, has had a lifelong interest in trains, beginning with HO and N scale tracks as a child and continuing with large G scale outdoor layouts as an adult. The fascination continues and his collection of trains has now grown to include “Li’l Tweetsie” as this engine has become known.

Li'l Tweetsie

Little Tweetsie Steam Blow Off

Friends, neighbors and future guests will have the opportunity to see and ride Little Tweetsie as early as next summer or fall, as track is added to the Yard at Banner Haven B&B.

Watch this site and book your stay at Banner Haven for an up close visit with Little Tweetsie, starting in the spring of 2016.

Follow us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/BannerHaven

Join us here and on Facebook for Little Tweetsie updates and more photos, as she continues to come to life at Banner Haven and other railroads nearby.

Li’l Tweetsie Coming to Banner Haven

Tweetsie Railroad has been around for more than half a decade, but Li’l Tweetsie, its pint-sized counterpart, is only about 15 years old.

Banner Haven Live Steam

Banner Haven – Li’l Tweetsie Railroad

Li’l Tweetsie is a replica of the 2-6-0 steam locomotive from the Eastern Tennessee and Western North Carolina Railroad, that used to pulled passengers and freight from Johnson City to Boone in the late 1800s and early 1900s. She is a precise model of the 150+ ton engine and was build by John Barden, of Charlotte, NC.

The little engine has traveled much of the east coast and even been displayed beside the full-size engine at Tweetsie Railroad.

Now, Li’l Tweetsie is going to call Banner Elk – Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast – home. The 7.5″ gauge 1.5″ scale locomotive doesn’t have any track, but that will soon change. Greg and Amy are planning a small outdoor loop in the back yard, that will allow her to reach speed of more than 10 mph.

All jokes aside, this lovely little jewel will be on display and out for play on weekends that fine Greg, Amy and their new grandson Zeb, out and about in the back yard.

Hard Time Booking Rooms

Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast has been going through a transition for more than a year, as the innkeepers, Greg and Amy Gardner, have traveled. Many times, rooms have been unavailable for booking.

Please understand, Banner Haven is extremely small, with only two rooms and one cabin.

Many weekends book months in advance and some more than a year. As a boutique B&B, it’s impossible to take large groups or families. We pride ourselves on offering as passional service as possible and pampering our guests.

If you’re looking for a room, please visit our banner haven reservation page to check for availability.

Thank you,
Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast

Banner Haven Live Steam

Banner Haven Builds Garden Railway

Greg and Amy Gardner have brought something new to Banner Elk; a small garden railway modeled after Tweetsie Railroad.

Banner Haven Live Steam

Banner Haven – Li’l Tweetsie Railroad

Some of these great photographs make this “toy” train look as large as the full-size version. In reality, Li’l Tweetsie fits in a small trailer and can be carried to different tracks. The small track at Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast is just enough to get this little guy going and have some fun.

Model railroading has been around as long as full-size railroading and steam engines continue to thrive in basements, attics and back yards across the country.

Li’l Tweetsie was built as a tribute to the #12 Eastern Tennessee & Western North Carolina Railway found at Tweetsie Railroad in Boone, NC. The full size version began service in the late 1800s and ran for more than 50 years, carrying passengers and freight from Tennessee to North Carolina. Today, it hauls passengers through the ever popular Tweetsie Amusement Park.

Tweetsie Banner Haven

Banner Haven’s Li’l Tweetsie Garden Railway

The Banner Haven Railroad will make it’s home at Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast, where guests and visitors will be able to see the miniature train makes its way around the yard.

With the addition of a new grand child, Greg and Amy will have lots of opportunities to step out and “play train” with children, friends, family and neighbors.

Stop by Banner Haven to see Li’l Tweetsie in action.

Summer is Here

Summer has been in full swing for some time, but the mountain weather is still cool and comfortable.

High Country Summer Sunset

High Country Summer Sunset

As always, the High Country summer is keeping on track with cool temperatures and beautiful weather. With high temperatures near mid to high 70s and lows in the 40s or 50s, the area is filled with people escaping the southern heat of Florida, South Carolina and Georgia.

Fishermen and finding hot spots all along the rivers. Rafters are enjoying the float trips and whitewater of the New River and Watauga River. Caving, hiking, bicycling and much more and just a few of the summer activities going strong right now.

Whether you’re looking for a quiet getaway or active holiday filled with fun, please consider Banner Haven B&B and Cabin Rental as your destination. From private rooms to a private cabin, we have something for everyone.

Just call 828-783-0408 to make your reservation, today.

Banner Elk Lodging

Banner Elk Lodging Business List

Most businesses will never promote or tell customers about their competition; however, Greg and Amy Gardner and the elite bed and breakfast lodge owners in Banner Elk are friends or acquaintances. Banner Haven is proud to make referrals, when we are full and provide a list of area lodges for our potential guests to review.

The small community of Banner Elk and all of the High Country is very friendly and built on friendships and business relationships. If Banner Haven is full, any of the following lodges would be an excellent place to plan a High Country stay.

If you contact these Banner Elk lodging businesses, please let them know where you found their information. We try hard to work together to promote our peaceful area.

High Country Lodging

High Country Lodging

Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast – www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
509 Beech Mountain Parkway, Banner Elk, NC (980) 329-8101

Cornerstone Cabin Rentals – www.cornerstonerentals.com
Hwy 194, Banner Elk, NC (386) 547-8771 / (828) 898-3115

The Banner Elk Inn – www.bannerelkinn.com
407 Main St E, Banner Elk, NC (828) 898-6223

Turnpike House – www.1902turnpikehouse.com
317 Old Turnpike Rd NW, Banner Elk, NC (888) 802-4487

Villa At the Blueberry Farm – www.bannerelkwinery.com
60 Deer Run, Banner Elk, NC (828) 898-9099

The Mast Farm Inn – www.themastfarminn.com
2543 Broadstone Rd, Banner Elk, NC (828) 963-5857

The Inn At Elk River – www.elkriverinn.com
875 Main St W, Banner Elk, NC (828) 898-9669

Taylor House Inn Banner Elk‎ – www.taylorhouseinn.roomstays.com
4584 Hwy 194 S, Banner Elk, NC (866) 257-5990

Stay tuned and bookmark our website to keep up to date.

Thank you,
Greg and Amy Gardner
Banner Haven Bed & Breakfast
509 Beech Mountain Parkway
www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
Banner Elk, NC 28604
Inn – 828-783-8085
Cell – 980-329-8101

Easy to reach from Charlotte, Raleigh, Virginia and Eastern Tennessee; Banner Haven and the High Country have something for everyone. Whether it’s winter skiing or summer whitewater rafting, the area attracts visitors for every season, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Plan your next vacation in the NC High Country and visit an area Bed and Breakfast for a fantastic experience.

Banner Elk – “Most Visited in US”

Banner Elk is near Most Visited National Park in the United States

The Great Smokey Mountains National Park has long been the most visited park in the America, according to the National Park Service; receiving more visitors than Yellowstone, Yosemite or Grand Canyon. And, The park is just a few hours from Banner Elk and Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast.

About 2 Hours west of Banner Haven, a beautiful drive down the Blue Ridge Parkway, you enter Great Smokey Mountains National Park where Elk have been reintroduced.

Banner Elk received its name from the Banner Family and the elk that inhabited the area over 150 years ago. The valley was known for a large elk population, which was hunted to complete extinction. The National Park Service has begun bringing these beautiful creatures back the the High Country.

Elk once roamed the southern Appalachian mountains and elsewhere in the eastern United States. They were eliminated from the region by over-hunting and loss of habitat. The last elk in North Carolina was believed to have been killed in the late 1700s. In Tennessee, the last elk was killed in the mid-1800s. By 1900, the population of elk in North America dropped to the point that hunting groups and other conservation organizations became concerned the species was headed for extinction.

A primary mission of the National Park Service is to preserve native plants and animals on lands it manages. In cases where native species have been eliminated from park lands, the National Park Service may choose to reintroduce them. Reintroduction of elk into Great Smoky Mountains National Park began in 2001 when 25 elk were brought from the Land Between the Lakes National Recreation Area along the Tennessee-Kentucky border. In 2002, the park imported another 27 animals.

In 2001, elk were released in Cataloochee Valley as part of an experimental program to reintroduce elk to the park. The herd can be seen regularly in the fields of the valley, especially in the early morning and evening hours. Visitors to Cataloochee also enjoy viewing deer, elk, turkey, and other wildlife. Wildlife watching can be especially fruitful during mornings and evenings in the valley’s open fields.

Today, it’s estimated that more than 1200 elk now call Western NC home. That number is expected to increase as the herds breed.

Elk may return to the Banner Elk area of the High Country and Grandfather Mountain is sure to be a spot where they will be found, with the large secluded terrain and few people.

Warning! Elk are large animals–larger than black bears–and can be dangerous. Female elk with calves have charged people in defense of their offspring. Males (bulls) may perceive people as challengers to their domain and charge. The best way to avoid these hazards is to keep your distance.

Never touch or move elk calves. Though they may appear to be orphaned, chances are their mother is nearby. Cows frequently leave their newborn calves while they go off to feed. A calf’s natural defense is to lie down and remain still. The same is true for white-tailed deer fawns.

Stay tuned and bookmark our website to keep up to date.

Thank you,
Greg and Amy Gardner
Banner Haven Bed & Breakfast
509 Beech Mountain Parkway
www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
Banner Elk, NC 28604
Inn – 828-783-8085
Cell – 980-329-8101

Easy to reach from Charlotte, Raleigh, Virginia and Eastern Tennessee; Banner Haven and the High Country have something for everyone. Whether it’s winter skiing or summer whitewater rafting, the area attracts visitors for every season, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Plan your next vacation in the NC High Country and visit an area Bed and Breakfast for a fantastic experience.

Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast – Great Weather

Beautiful Weather Hits Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast Inns

Banner Elk NC is home to some of the most beautiful scenery in the Carolinas. From Grandfather Mountain to the Blue Ridge Parkway, there is something for people of all ages to enjoy.

From the Azalea Inn and Banner Haven to some of the many other Great Lodges in the area, there is always a great place to stay when visiting the High Country. Your visit will be spectacular, if you want to plan a ski get away for some time in February. The slopes are open and the snow is thick, with bases over 80″ and all area slopes 100% open.

Skiers of all levels can enjoy the area ski resorts with terrain from the easiest to double black diamonds at Sugar Mountain Resort.

Appalachian Ski Mtn – Family ski resort in the High Country of North Carolina. 12 slopes including 2 terrain parks serviced by 1 double chairlift, two quad chairlifts, two conveyor lifts (new in 2010) and one handle-pull lift.

Hawksnest Snow Tubing Resort – Snow tubing in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. Hawksnest is recognized for having the largest snow tubing park on the east coast. The resort had skiing in the past but no longer offers skiing or snowboarding.

Ski Beech – Ski resort located high in the mountains of Western North Carolina. Night skiing is also offered for a winter wonderland of fun and activities for your family vacation.

Sugar Mountain Ski Resort – North Carolina’s largest ski area. With ski slopes, a terrain park, ice skating, tube park, snowshoeing, slopeside lodging and more they have it all.

There are many great NC winter attractions and skiing is just one. If it’s yours, plan your next trip and stay with us, here at Banner Haven Bed and Breakfast.

Stay tuned and bookmark our website to keep up to date.

Thank you,
Greg and Amy Gardner
Banner Haven Bed & Breakfast
509 Beech Mountain Parkway
www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
Banner Elk, NC 28604
Inn – 828-783-8085
Cell – 980-329-8101

Easy to reach from Charlotte, Raleigh, Virginia and Eastern Tennessee; Banner Haven and the High Country have something for everyone. Whether it’s winter skiing or summer whitewater rafting, the area attracts visitors for every season, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Plan your next vacation in the NC High Country and visit an area Bed and Breakfast for a fantastic experience.

Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast – Ski Weekend

Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast Lodges Ready For Great Skiing

The High Country has been record cold temperatures in January, which has setup a fantastic month of skiing in February.

Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast

Banner Elk Bed and Breakfast

Short sleeves and short pants may be seen on the slopes this weekend, as area slopes gear up for a spring-like ski weekend at Sugar, Beech and Appalachian Ski Resorts. All slopes are open and 100% of the terrain is covered with snow and skiers. It’s a perfect weekend to ski and watch the Super Bowl.

Several area bed and breakfasts still have rooms available. You can find a list of local B&Bs here; www.BannerElkBedAndBreakfasts.com. Come on up for what is sure to be one of the year’s best ski weekends.

Come on up to the Banner Elk High Country of Western North Carolina. If you don’t ski, you can enjoy the Super Bowl at one of the area B&Bs or one of the many local restaurants that will be sure to carry the game. Whatever your pleasure, there is something for everyone this weekend and every weekend in the Carolina mountains.

Stay tuned and bookmark our website to keep up to date.

Thank you,
Greg and Amy Gardner
Banner Haven Bed & Breakfast
509 Beech Mountain Parkway
www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
Banner Elk, NC 28604
Inn – 828-783-8085
Cell – 980-329-8101

Easy to reach from Charlotte, Raleigh, Virginia and Eastern Tennessee; Banner Haven and the High Country have something for everyone. Whether it’s winter skiing or summer whitewater rafting, the area attracts visitors for every season, Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall. Plan your next vacation in the NC High Country and visit an area Bed and Breakfast for a fantastic experience.

Great New Bartering and Trading Website

Bartering and Trading is Becoming more Popular

In today’s economy bartering and trading has become very popular, once again. Banner Haven has joined the trend by trading our new website for a stay here at Banner Haven.

Barter Trade Swap

Barter Trade Swap

The local website, www.iBarterAndTrade.com, has been launched and is helping visitors barter, trade and swap one item for another. The website allows visitors to post their stuff and then receive email from people that would like to trade.

Although the site is new, many new posts are coming in and recent posts include computers, laptops, iPhone, cars, motorcycles, dirt bikes and more. It’s also free to post, free to view and free to contact the traders.

If you have things to trade, give the site a try.

If you’re coming to Banner Elk or the North Carolina High Country, take the time to review our website and give us a call. We would love to host you on your next mountain getaway.

Stay tuned and bookmark our website to keep up to date.

Thank you,
Greg and Amy Gardner
Banner Haven Bed & Breakfast
509 Beech Mountain Parkway
www.BannerHavenBedAndBreakfast.com
Banner Elk, NC 28604
Inn – 828-783-8085
Cell – 980-329-8101