A Visit to the Art Happening in Downtown Sevierville, February 2019

IMG_3386 3

The light from the Arts in Common Gallery was a beacon to all on a cool, rainy February evening. I parked across the street and hurried inside. Fighting off a cold or something going around, I still wanted to pop in to meet featured artist, Joan Swanson, and to see some of her work. It was a nice event and I was glad that I could make it.

IMG_3343

Street parking was still available, but you had to walk a little due to the Art Happening and the newly opened restaurant, Graze Burgers. It is always good to see busy streets in downtown Sevierville!

IMG_3344

My car was parked just steps away from the Arts in Common Gallery.

IMG_3347

 

I quickly ran into Andrea Wilson, board member of the Sevierville Commons Art Council, and featured artist, Joan Swanson. I like this area reserved for featured artist work because it invites you to look and linger a while. Natural light from the windows, wood flooring, and neutral wall color makes a perfect stage for local art. Swanson’s landscapes were well presented and I enjoyed taking my time to peruse them. Beach and mountain scenes are my favorites.

img_3346.jpg

Joan Swanson specializes in landscapes and pet portraits. You can find her pet portraits on the website Pawsofloveart.com .

IMG_3351 2

Look at these amazing pet portraits! They are extraordinary!

IMG_3350 3

I could not tell the difference between oil and pastel paintings. Joan told me that pastels go behind glass in a frame and oils do not. A simple fact, but something cool that I learned last Thursday at the Art Happening. Ask artist questions for you will learn a lot.

IMG_3354

I always enjoy going into the Arts in Common gallery to see the displays. There is always something new to see.

IMG_3369 3

Music was provided by Tony Negron, an instrumental, finger style guitarist. It was delightful.

IMG_3364

There are always refreshments so come to the Art Happening right after work.

IMG_3357

Everything is beautifully displayed.

IMG_3370 3

You are sure to find a gift at the Arts in Common Gallery. Shop while you visit.

IMG_3368 2

Arts Council board member, Laurel Kiewitt talks with Cheri Auman during the Art Happening.

IMG_3374

Local artist, Jenny Dennis, was enjoying the event. Look carefully at the four paintings on the wall because she created those pieces. You will be seeing more of her work in the future!

img_3378-4.jpg

Arts Council board member, Andrea Wilson, took a moment to address the crowd, encourage involvement with the group, and to detail upcoming spring events.

IMG_3381 3

I met Art Happening attendees Cheri Auman and David Freeman. Freeman has been a featured artist before and will soon be again.

IMG_3375 2

I always admire the beautiful, distressed brick walls in the gallery. The inset bookshelf is a lovely way to display art for the public. You can also purchase things if something catches your fancy.

Alas, an hour soon passed and I was ready to head home from a long day. Find the Sevierville Commons Arts Council on Facebook at this link. https://www.facebook.com/CommonsArtsCouncil/

See you at the next Art Happening on March 14th. The featured artist will be Audrie Prince. It is one of the best ways to be out and about in Sevierville. 

IMG_3380 2

 

Graze Burgers Opening in Downtown Sevierville

img_3455-2.jpg

I was excited to attend the pre-opening event for Graze Burgers downtown last night. After watching the construction going on all summer and fall, the moment had finally arrived to see the final product—and it didn’t disappoint! Come along as we got to experience one of the best new places in downtown Sevierville.

First, I am going to get straight to the point and list my top 10 reasons that Graze Burgers is going to be special. Maybe even my favorite burger place in Tennessee.

  1. The owners’ families have created restaurant legacies in East Tennessee: Angelos in Morristown, Angelos on the Point in Dandridge, and Stock and Barrel on Market Square in Knoxville. They have decades of experience in the restaurant industry and deliver a high quality experience.
  2. With a burger, you can order 1/2 fries and 1/2 onion rings! I have never seen that before because you usually have to choose one or the other. We can call them ‘frings.’
  3. The cocktail and beverage selections are excellent. (Check out the ‘Off the Rails cocktail.’)
  4. Spiked Shakes! I have never seen this before either. They make great desserts!
  5. Brioche bun!  There were many burger variations and each looked delish. There will be something for every taste. Even more, I love a brioche bun.
  6. There are windows behind the bar that will open to the outside alley and patio area. “Hello spring and summer dining al fresco!”
  7. The atmosphere inside is relaxed and fun. There are three large screen TVs on the wall and music playing in the background to keep the mood festive.
  8. The parking is plentiful nearby, both in the gazebo area and on the street.
  9. I can tell that the owners and the business will be great new neighbors downtown.
  10. I liked the water glasses. They were Duraclear or some other light material so there was no problem with breakage and they fit my hand quite well. I don’t like glasses that are too big to handle.

Let’s continue to our visit to Graze Burgers last Saturday evening in downtown Sevierville.

img_3213-2.jpg

Upon arrival, Melinda and I found the parking lot by the gazebo almost full of cars. We thought we were early, but there were others already there to experience Sevierville’s newest restaurant.

IMG_3216 2

Lights and signs were on. Street parking was filling up, which is rare for 5:30 on a Saturday evening downtown unless there is a special event.

IMG_3215 2

Friendly hosts and hostesses were ready to show us to a table. We got the last one available. The place was packed!

IMG_3212 2

This screenshot from the Graze Burgers Facebook page shows a sleek design, yet maintaining the original brick wall. I am not sure what to call it, but the combination of natural brick, wood, and metal makes me want to call it a ‘mountain industrial’ look. Notice the large windows behind the bar that can be rolled up in warm weather to serve customers in the alley/patio area later this year. Here is the link to the restaurant Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/grazeburgers1/

IMG_3219

We were lucky to arrive no later because tables were all taken.

IMG_3220

There is an interesting beverage list. Who doesn’t love a tall glass?

IMG_3246 2

I had researched the menu a few days before so not much time would be wasted on my selections.

IMG_3254

We always order fried pickles at the beach so we were not going to pass them up last night.

IMG_3255

Vince and Glenda Snider were ready for dinner at Graze.

IMG_3257 2

 Leesa and Jim McGill, Sevierville City Alderman.

IMG_3260

Ed and Bethany McCarter enjoying dinner at Graze.

IMG_3267 2

I love food served on a cookie sheet pan. Look—half fries and half onion rings. You can order one or the other, or both!

IMG_3450

Here is a screenshot of the main menu.

img_3273.jpg

One of the owners chats with Jim McGill after dinner. He has owned both Angelos locations in Morristown and Dandridge. Being from Morristown, that was all I needed to hear! When I grew up, Angelos in Morristown was the very best place to dine.

IMG_3279

Doyle Jones, local architect, and local artist/businesswoman, Bev Gwinn Jones.

img_3280.jpg

The Sevierville Commons board of directors are certainly excited to see new businesses downtown. SCA board members from left to right: Gigi Simonis, Austin Williams, and Jason Holliman.

IMG_3268

My favorite thing of the evening may have been the spiked shake called the Boozy S’mores because of the two roasted marshmallows on top and the ice cream delight in the glass. Oh my!

IMG_3451

Here is a screen shot of the beverage list.

IMG_3282What a great dinner! Afterward, Melinda and I worked our way through the crowd, said lots of ‘hellos’  and headed out the front door. It was great to finally see patrons sitting in the front windows after I watched the building progress all last summer. It came together beautifully.

IMG_3288

Keep an eye on the space next door because there is something going in there in the coming months. The manager told me that it is ‘top secret’ for now.

img_3292.jpg

For a Saturday evening in downtown Sevierville, cars lining both sides of the street will become more common with Graze and Bistro 109 open in the evenings.

IMG_3460

This screenshot from the Graze Burgers Facebook page shows some new neighbors that are most welcome in downtown Sevierville. We wish them much luck and can’t wait to visit them again while we are out and about in Sevierville. 

Save a seat for us!