Lincoln Memorial University

June 15-17, 2018

Darnell ArnoultDear writers and friends,

Every year writers and aspiring writers gather at the ancient and beloved Cumberland Gap to celebrate writing, music, and Appalachian heritage during the Mountain Heritage Literary Festival at Lincoln Memorial University in Harrogate, Tennessee. Events include workshops, panels, readings,lectures, concerts, plays, films, open mic, and more. This year the festival will be held June 15-June 17. While we do have an emphasis on Appalachian literature and culture, we welcome presenters and participants from all over the place. This warm, intimate, and encouraging festival has been compared to a family reunion. We all learn from each other. Our goal is to celebrate the written word and to encourage and nurture its creation. Come join us and become part of the MHLF family. 

This year our staff includes Michael Cody, Jane Hicks, Jesse Graves, Ronni Lundy, Lisa Parker, Mark Powell, Lisa Soland, Amy Speace, Douglas and Telisha Williams, Marth Wolfe, William Wright, and more.

Advance registration through is encouraged. Full registration includes housing and meals as well as festival registration. A non-residential option is also available. Check-in begins Friday at 11:00 AM at the Lincoln Library and Museum near the main entrance to LMU. Opening remarks take place there at 2:00 PM.  The schedule continues until 11:45 AM on  Sunday morning.

As you know, the festival is sandwiched between two other excellent writing events.  If you are registered for the festival and want to take advantage of the $50/$25 festival discount for Playwright Intensive with Lisa Soland the Sunday-Thursday just before the festival or the Gap Creek Writers Studio with visiting writers Crystal Wilkinson and Sonja Livingston the Sunday-Friday immediately following the festival, click on the workshop title above and look for the festival discount ticket on the event page at 

And don’t forget LMU’s Arts in the Gap writing workshops Poet Boot Camp with Aaron Smith and Writing to Heal with Abigail Dewitt. Both are week-long workshops held June 23-18, with residential and nonresidential registration options.

Note: To register for Playwright Intensive with Lisa Soland the week prior to the festival, or Cumberland Gap Studio the week immediately following the festival, please see those pages on LMU's website or in listings. If you have already registered for the MHLF, you may take advantage of the $50 discount for these two events.

Registration for MHLF is open now.  In the meantime, if you have any questions about our festival please feel free to contact me at or 423-869-7170 or 615.715.3956. We hope to see you in Harrogate this June.

All my very best to you,

Darnell Arnoult
Director, MHLF
Lincoln Memorial University
Cumberland Gap Parkway
P.O. Box 1643
Harrogate, TN 37752



423.869.3611 | 800.325.0900
6965 Cumberland Gap Parkway
Harrogate, TN 37752