Lexington, NC

Lexington NC is in Davidson County...

2016 Best Guide to Lexington, NC

December 20, 2015

Lexington NC is located near the center of the state, in the Yadkin River valley of the Piedmont area, about 18 miles south of Winston Salem. It is in Davidson County and is part of the Piedmont Triad. The town also is the county seat.

There are about 19,000 people living here ( a drop from 21,000 in 2007), in an area of almost 18 square miles. The town is named in honor of the battle in Lexington, Massachusetts, given by the residents of the area during the American Revolution.


One of the first landowners in Lexington was Dr. William Rainey Holt, a physician and Secessionist from Pennsylvania, who built a home here, called The Homestead. A strong supporter for the South in the Civil War, three of Holt's sons were killed in fighting for the Rebels. Even his beloved home was occupied by Union soldiers.

Incorporated in 1828, and named the Davidson County seat in 1847, Lexington NC lays claim to several notable distinctions. Primarily, it opened America's first silver mine (1838). Next, its residents today proudly boast the town as the barbeque capital of the state.

The old Davidson County Courthouse in Lexington was built in 1858, and presently is home to the Historical Museum. It is a temple-form building.

In 1905, a monument was erected by the Daughters of the Confederacy in honor of the County's Civil War dead. It was moved to its present location in 1950.

Lexington was mostly a town of textiles and furniture makers, until recently when factory owners moved their locations overseas and into Mexico. This resulted in the town's economy becoming weak. Today, however growth is happening as a number of large companies have made Lexington NC their home.

Lexington NC Barbecue

Back to why you probably came to this website - barbecue! If you have never eaten "Lexington style barbecue", as it is known nationally, you're gonna love this! Anyone and everyone in the state of North Carolina knows where to find the best barbecue - Lexington. I mean, it's a clear giveaway, especially on your first drive through town, what with all the pigs lining the streets.

The town has been holding its famous Barbecue Festival each year now since 1984. It boasts almost two dozen barbecue restaurants. And, Lexington has been recognized as a top barbecue city in America by U.S. News and World Report (2012).

The barbecue here is pork shoulder, mostly, that has been slow-cooked (of course). The wood of choice is almost always hickory. Basting is performed with a runny sauce the locals simply call "dip", which basically contains vinegar, ketchup, spices, salt, water, and garlic. Other "secret" spices are added to give each its own unique style.

Some Lexington barbecues are spicy, while others are sweet. The side dish is slaw. No, not your ordinary coleslaw made with mayonnaise! This is a red slaw base, also containing vinegar, ketchup and spices.

There are even instructions on "How to Order a Barbecue Sandwich, Plate or Tray" on the town's website. Some tips include understanding that the barbecue is not pulled; rather it is chopped or sliced. You can ask for some "outside" or "brown" if you want the crispy crust of the barbecue. You'll almost always get red slaw, as opposed to the white coleslaw. You can get a sandwich or a platter. Barbecue sauce is called "dip'. It is runny, vinegar-based, and spicy or sweet. Iced tea is what you get to drink - no exceptions! Well, you can ask for a soft drink.

Lexington Barbecue Festival

Each year since 1984 Lexington NC features one of the largest street festivals in small town America. It's called the Lexington Barbecue Festival, if you have to ask. Several blocks of downtown are closed off to traffic to make way for the fun. It's a one-day event held in October and sees more than 150,000 visitors from around the country.

And, it's all about the pig. All the town's barbecue restaurants, and plenty others from around the country are on hand, serving up delicious food. Several hundred other vendors are present as well.

Annually, the festival serves about 15,000 pounds of barbecue. Pepsi, Wal-Mart, BB&T Bank, and other large companies have been sponsors. Even Amtrak routes trains to the town for the day from Raleigh and Charlotte, NC.
Other events at the festival include live music from several stages, street performers, and lumberjack games.

The Pigs of Lexington NC

This brings us to the pigs. Yup. Pigs. They are everywhere in the "uptown" area of Lexington. Well, they aren't real pigs. But, they are clearly alive with the spirit of the town. They are ornamental fiberglass pigs. It started in 2003 as a public art initiative to promote the downtown area of Lexington, with the locals sponsoring it.

In short, you pay to decorate and paint one or more of the pigs in just about any way you see fit. Each year, there is a theme for the event. Past themes include This Little Piggy went to the Market, Pigahontas, and Mr. Porkwrench! Creative marketing, if you ask me. Good job, Uptown Lexington, Inc.!

High Rock Lake

High Rock Lake is the second largest lake in the state of North Carolina. It is a reservoir lake operated by Alcoa, producing hydroelectric power. It is renowned for its excellent fishing opportunities as the Bassmaster Tournaments are held here.

Expect to catch big, fat large-mouth bass, flathead, blue and channel catfish, crappie, and striper among others in this somewhat shallow lake. The river is more than 15,000 acres in size and had 360 miles of shoreline. It is fed by the Yadkin and South Yadkin Rivers.

High Rock Lake is part of the Yadkin-Pee Dee (Uwharrie) chain of lakes. It is second in size only to Lake Norman in North Carolina, and gets its name from the nearby High Rock Mountain, the highest peak in the Uwharrie Mountains. The dam, built in the 1920s, operates three turbines which produce almost 40 mega-watts of power.

Zip Code

The zip codes for Lexington NC are 27292, 27293, 27294, and 27295.

Nearby Towns

Nearby towns include...

SOUTHMONT, NC
EAST SPENCER, NC
THOMASVILLE, NC
TRINITY, NC
WELCOME, NC
RICHFIELD, NC
GOLD HILL, NC
GRANITE QUARRY, NC
HIGH POINT, NC
LINWOOD, NC
ROCKWELL, NC
ADVANCE, NC
DENTON, NC
SALISBURY, NC
FAITH, NC
SPENCER, NC

Lexington NC Weather

The weather in Lexington is typically humid and warm in the summer and cool/cold in the winter. The average temperatures for July are 82 F. for the high and 60 F. for the lows. The town averages about 4 inches of precipitation monthly, with about 8 - 10 inches of snow in December, January and February.

Things to Do in Lexington NC

Visiting Lexington NC should be on every American's bucket list. Even if only for the barbecue! But, there are plenty more things to do in Lexington NC that one might expect. Check out the shops in the historic uptown district. Drink a cup of coffee at the Riverwood Coffee Shop. Visit the Army Navy Store and take the kids by the Candy Factory. View art at the Bob Timberlake Gallery or peruse the isles of the farmer's market. Discover Lexington's rich history at the museum. NASCAR fans will enjoy the Richard Childress Racing Museum. Well, Richard Childress fans will! Like wine? Do some tasting at the Childress Vineyards.


 

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