EDITION: Surry County
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Surry County :: Surry County, Elkin, and Mt. Airy, NC

Mount Airy

Mount Airy was settled in the 1750s as a stagecoach stop on the road between Winston-Salem and Galax, Virginia. It was named for a nearby plantation. Mount Airy was incorporated in 1885.

Mount Airy was the birthplace and childhood home of American actor Andy Griffith, and is widely believed to be the inspiration for the fictional community Mayberry, the setting of The Andy Griffith Show and its sequel, Mayberry RFD. Several locations and names mentioned in both shows reflect real places and people in or near Mount Airy, including Mount Pilot (nearby Pilot Mountain and the town named for it) and Snappy Lunch, a restaurant which still operates in the city's downtown area and is famous for its pork chop sandwich. In episode #154 of the Andy Griffith Show, Aunt Bee's Invisible Beau, Andy is clearly seen in close-up reading what could be a Mount Airy newspaper. All that is visible are the words "Airy News".

Three Ford Galaxie police cars, painted to resemble those used on the show, give rides to tourists. A barber shop has been named Floyd's, and a salvage yard has the name Mayberry. One of the attractions is the Andy Griffith Museum, which attracts about 200 visitors a day.

The community holds an annual Mayberry Days celebration during the last weekend of September. The University of North Carolina at Greensboro estimates the town receives $5 million each year as a result.

As of the 2010 census, the city population was 10,388.

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