White Squirrels of Brevard

Things To Do In The Smoky Mountains

The charming town of Brevard, North Carolina, is home to a unique population of white squirrels.

Origin of Brevard’s White Squirrels

Located in the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, the charming town of Brevard, North Carolina, is home to a unique and enchanting population of white squirrels. Unlike the typical grey squirrel, these white squirrels are not albino but rather a genetic variant with a striking white coat and dark eyes. Their presence in Brevard has become a beloved symbol of the town, capturing the imaginations of both residents and visitors alike. The legend of Brevard’s white squirrels is as captivating as the creatures themselves. According to local lore, the story begins with a carnival animal truck that overturned near the home of Mr. Black in Madison, Florida, in 1949. Mr. Black discovered a pair of white squirrels playing in his pecan grove and captured them. He later gifted the squirrels to his friend H.H. Mull of Brevard, through Mull’s brother-in-law. Mull’s niece, Barbara, initially attempted to breed the squirrels but was unsuccessful.

In 1951 Barbara married and left home, leaving the squirrels in her uncle’s care. Eventually, one of the white squirrels escaped, and Mr. Mull decided to release the other one into the wild. These resilient creatures soon adapted to their new environment and began to breed. Over time, sightings of white squirrels spread across Brevard, and their population grew, becoming a distinctive and cherished part of the town’s wildlife. The white squirrels’ remarkable journey from a carnival mishap to local icons has become integral to Brevard’s identity, endearing them to residents and visitors alike. The city takes pride in its unusual residents, conducting an annual squirrel count to monitor their population and ensure their protection. This dedication has fostered a strong sense of community involvement, with locals and tourists alike participating in efforts to preserve the white squirrels’ habitat. Brevard’s white squirrels can often be seen scampering across lawns, climbing trees, and foraging for food, providing a delightful sight for those who happen upon them.

Brevard’s white squirrels have become a significant cultural and ecological attraction, celebrated through events like the White Squirrel Festival. This annual event features music, arts and crafts, and a parade, drawing attention to the white squirrels’ uniqueness and importance to the town’s identity. Educational programs and tours are also available, allowing visitors to learn more about these fascinating creatures and the efforts to conserve them. The white squirrels of Brevard are more than just a curiosity; they embody the town’s commitment to preserving its natural heritage and fostering a deep connection between its community and the environment.

Annual White Squirrel Weekend

In 2024, Brevard will celebrate the 20th anniversary of its beloved White Squirrel Weekend, a highlight of the town’s cultural calendar. This milestone event promises to be an extraordinary celebration, combining a stellar live music lineup with a smorgasbord of tasty offerings from vendors and local craft breweries. Attendees can also explore various treasures from craft and retail vendors, making it a fantastic event for all ages. A full music lineup and schedule of events are available at www.brevardnc.org, ensuring that visitors can plan their perfect weekend. The White Squirrel Weekend encapsulates the spirit of Brevard, bringing together community, culture, and the unique charm of its white squirrels.

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