In search of fall foliage outside of New England
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The Virginia Division of Tourism has packets of fall information ready for travelers: the address is Virginia Department of Economic Development, Division of Tourism, 202 North Ninth Street, Suite 500, Richmond, Va. 23219. For calendars of events and other information in North Carolina, write the Division of Travel and Tourism, 430 North Salisbury Street, Raleigh, N.C. 27611 or call 800-VISITNC.Skip to next paragraph
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South Carolina's ``upcountry'' -- the northwest corner of the state, and the end of the Blue Ridge Mountains -- is where people in this state go for fall color. The Cherokee Foothills Scenic Highway (Highway 11) stretches 130 miles past state parks, rolling hills, and Revolutionary War sites. The state parks offer fall color walks. For information and events, write South Carolina Division of Tourism, PO Box 71, Columbia, S.C. 29202, or call (803) 758-8735. Kentucky
The southeastern part of Kentucky, in the mountains again, is the foliage area; Natural Bridge and Pine Mountain State Resort Parks are popular in the fall.
In New England picking apples and buying pumpkins are good excuses for getting out of the city; in this part of the world you might also find people hawking their homemade sorghum (good on biscuits) by the side of the road. October is a busy time for both apple and sorghum festivals; you can receive a calendar of events, foliage reports, and other travel information by calling (800) 225-8747 or writing to TRAVEL, Frankfort, Ky. 40601. West Virginia
A full 75 percent of West Virginia is forest land, and 80 percent of that is covered with hardwood trees. The two most popular areas for leaf-peeping are the Potomac Highland area -- that's in the mountainous eastern section of the state, and the New River area, home of the famous Greenbrier resort, in the south. The Monongahela National Forest, which stretches along the Virginia border, is particularly recommended.
Outside of West Virginia you can call (800) 624-9110 for foliage updates, as well as other travel information; inside the state call (304) 348-2286.
A sellout event is the yearly steam train excursion of the Collis P. Huntington Railroad Historic Society through the New River Gorge; this year Nickel Plate Road engine No. 765 will take visitors through the mountains at predicted peak foliage time: Oct. 12, 13, 19, and 20 (call 304-522-6140 for information).
Another popular event is the Mountain State Forest Festival, held in Elkins the first week in October. Horse-pulling, jousting, muzzle loading, woodchopping and sawing, banjo and fiddling are promised. Pennsylvania
Pennsylvania, which means ``Penn's woods,'' claims 127 varieties of trees. Perhaps this is why almost every town seems to have a foliage festival. These all feature pleasant autumny activities; for instance, on Oct. 20 there will be a state championship fiddlers' contest in Uniontown, while in Clarion County the Autumn Leaf Festival includes a Miss Autumn Leaf Pageant, an antique car display, a parade, and barbecues (Oct. 7-14). A calendar can be obtained from the Bureau of Travel Development, Pennsylva nia Department of Commerce, 416 Forum Building, Harrisburg, Pa. 17120.
In the Poconos, the north-central area is the most popular place for leaf-watching. Scenic routes that are recommended: US Route 6, a northern east-west road, and its southern counterpart, the Pennsylvania Turnpike.
For foliage information, call the Pennsylvania Travel Bureau at 1-800-VISITPA.