Music in Common

Last Friday night, I learned that I need to keep a portable chair in the back of my car in case I need it. What prompted that discovery? I found Music in Common by the Sevierville Commons Arts Council last Friday night and hope to go again very soon.

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The weather was warm and comfortable so it was a pleasure to drop by and hear some music at the downtown Sevierville  gazebo.

IMG_0699Boogertown Gap performed on October 6th.

 

Listeners were treated to music that brought back times from early settlers in the Smoky Mountains.

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I saw people drive by in their cars and slow down to a stop to hear the pretty music coming from the gazebo. It was rather enchanting.

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It is kind of special when you can attend an event downtown on a warm evening. There will be three more Friday performances this month so drop by, relax, and enjoy the music. And consider carrying a chair in the back of your car…

See you out and about in Sevierville. 

 

 

The Most Instagram-Worthy Spots in Downtown Sevierville

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Whether you are a tourist wanting a picture with the Dolly statue or a local who is spending some time downtown, there are some ‘Instagram worthy’ places to find in in the center of Sevierville. This blogger teamed up with DB Photography, a Sevier Commons board member and an Instagram savvy downtown worker to find the best places to go. Here is our list of the most Instagram-worthy spots downtown.

SITES

THE DOLLY PARTON STATUE

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Without a doubt, the statue of Dolly Parton is the most photographed spot in downtown Sevierville. You can drive by almost any time of day to find people taking pictures with the statue of our favorite native, Dolly Parton. She is loved by audiences all over the world so there are sure to be some fans at the statue, especially on weekends. In fact, I saw five cars stop during our photoshoot that Sunday with visitors from Alabama, Arkansas, and Texas. Find this special place on Court Avenue in front of the Sevier County Courthouse. The statue always seems to say “Welcome to downtown Sevierville!”

THE SEVIER COUNTY COURTHOUSE

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While at the Dolly Parton statue, you should consider a photo of the Sevier County Courthouse due the bell tower, curved windows, brick, and other attributes. I have taken pictures of it during different times of day and various seasons. Clouds and the sky contrast well with the dark brick and bell tower. I always find it interesting.

THE CROSSWALK IN FRONT OF THE COURTHOUSE

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This photo taken on the crosswalk in front of the Sevier County courthouse is a fun replica of the Beatles Abbey Road album cover. If you want this shot then you better visit on Sunday when there are few cars parked downtown to ‘clutter’ your shot. The courthouse gets busy during the week, especially on Fridays.

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Or you can take a photo from this view of the crosswalk. The lines make an interesting frame for the model. In addition, the pretty flowers, plants and doorway in the background lend interest. Yes, crosswalks are good for Instagram photos!

DOORWAYS ON COURT AVENUE

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Across the street from the Sevier County courthouse, you will find a block of buildings with interesting characteristics. For example, several offices have interesting doorways and windows. Fashion bloggers often use doorways to frame their shots so anything curved or out of the ordinary is a good bet for an interesting photograph for an Instagram shot.

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This doorway is simple yet interesting with the three steps and contrasting color on the doors.  Find this doorway across the street from the Sevier County Courthouse.

COURTHOUSE DONUTS

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A favorite downtown gathering place is Courthouse Donuts at 160 Court Avenue. The bench is not just for resting, but for for posing for social media pictures. You get a bench, pretty windows, flags, flowers, and buildings all in one shot. The windows of Courthouse Donuts always display work from local artists; therefore, it is one of the best places downtown to take a picture. Just across the street from the courthouse, Courthouse Donuts also offers refreshment and a nice morning vibe. You can relax with a coffee and have one of the best donuts in Tennessee. Or stay for lunch. The building is lovely inside. Go take a look!

D GARDEN

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D Garden is just a few doors away Courthouse Donuts and offers the most lovely view on Court Avenue. This wonderful ‘floratique’ has several windows and a doorway that are more than Instagram-worthy. In addition, one can hear music playing softly in the background of the entrance, making you want to linger. Take a closer look because this space has a bit of history inside.

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The front door of D Garden is just as lovely. Look at the small chandelier overhead. You are ready for a great photo at D Garden on Court Avenue because it is dressed up and ready to go! Find the website at  www.dgardenfloratique.com

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With the picture above, you can see that D Garden has the most beautiful door and exterior in downtown Sevierville.

THE VICTORIA MALL ARCADE PASSAGEWAY ON COURT AVENUE

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This is what the British call an arcade, or a passageway, from Court Avenue to the back parking lot of Sevier County Bank and the gazebo area. You can take some interesting pictures here due to shadows and lighting. Give it a try! The Southern Fried Hair salon is on the left and the Cause and Effect store is on the right.

THE ALLEY ON COURT AVENUE

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This alley is near D Garden and north of the courthouse. It is rather long and interesting. The wood side contrasts with the brick. Your imagination is the limit for this Instagram worthy shot.

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The wood side of the alley makes a nice neutral background for portraits. Beautiful!

THE WALL BEHIND THE FORMER SEVIER COUNTY BANK LOCATION

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Continue walking toward Main Street then take a right to find this wall behind the old Sevier County Bank building. Why is this shot Instagram-worthy? Any color will stand out from the neutral background color of the wall. Observe how the blue denim color in the dress ‘pops’ in the foreground of this shot. See an upcoming blog on my website for the ideas we had for this wall.

THE OLD EMERY 5 & 10 SIGN

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For a nostalgic photo, take one with this Emery 5 & 10 sign. To find it, continue past the wall behind the former Sevier County Bank building. You will find it to the right, on the back of the building. DB Photography can do special effects to intensify elements in a photo. Can you see them here?

THE OLE SMOKY MOONSHINE OFFICE

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This business is decorated and ready for your photo shoot downtown. In fact, it was one of the most festive places that we found downtown last week. Ole Smoky is ready for fall!

BISTRO 109

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Go back to Courthouse Donuts then turn left on Bruce Street. Across the street you will see one of our favorite lunch and dinner spots, Bistro 109. The exterior affords a nice picture with nice windows, lights, and plants. Go inside and take a picture of the beautiful copper bar and piano. The interior of the restaurant has many Instagram-worthy spots so take a look. After all that, I recommend the cranberry chicken salad and a beverage of your choice. It is one of my favorite places to eat in town.

THE CHERRY PIT

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The Cherry Pit is close to Bistro 109. The exterior is interesting so we stopped for a look. The window contains some pretty things as well. Wear blue to stand out amidst the red and white at this location.

THE BRICK ALLEY ON BRUCE STREET

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This was next to the old bus depot and buses actually used to drive through this alley. It is hard to believe because it looks so narrow. There are unlimited ideas for this photo spot.

THE OLD JAILHOUSE CELL BARS

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I once heard a story during a history walking tour downtown about the old jail burning down. In an effort to re-use materials, they made a sewer grate from the old jail house cell bars. You often find interesting shots on Instagram using flooring or the ground. There are also shots called ‘flatlays’ where one takes a photo looking down at objects. This one would be a conversation piece. Go to the back of the Bruce Street brick alley to find this interesting piece of Sevierville history.

CHAROTTE’S BRUCE STREET CREATIVE

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Continue up the street to Charlotte’s Bruce Street Creative for an attractive window scene. This one is dressed in our favorite colors: orange and white. Go Vols!

Enter Charlotte’s Creative to see beautiful jewelry and art. You may sign up for a class sometime. The interior is an artist’s dream.

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If you are impressed with these photos, the business card for DB Photography is pictured above. Danyelle Bledsoe is my official photographer for special events.

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VFL!

THE SEVIER COUNTY HERITAGE MUSEUM

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I remember when this building used to be the post office. It was hard to find a parking space during certain times of the day when one needed to buy stamps. Now, the building serves as the Sevier County Heritage Museum. The brick and white treatments combine to make a nice picture. Thus, it makes our list of the most Instagram-worthy places in downtown Sevierville.

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This is the grassy area beside the Sevier County Heritage Museum.

CASH HARDWARE

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Yes, you read that correctly. Cash Hardware! I would not have thought of using that spot but Sara, our Instagram savvy friend, pointed out that the panels almost matched the color in my shirt. Color co-ordination is important for social media fashion bloggers so we tried the shot to see what it would look like. Not bad!

THE GAZEBO ON BRUCE STREET

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Danyelle caught the gazebo from a beautiful angle here. There are many more in the gazebo area. Visit the farmer’s market here during the summer or ‘Music in Common’ performances on Friday nights this month, October 2017.

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Here is a trick—try to match the courthouse bell tower with the one on the sign. There are some beautiful plants and baskets downtown this year and they have not gone unnoticed. The city landscaping department has really done an excellent job this year.

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In case you missed it, here is the info for our photographer, who owns DB Photography. This blog story would not have existed without her skillful photography and posing suggestions.

Here is a link to her Facebook page. https://www.facebook.com/dbphotographysevier/

Many thanks to our models who helped to give this story  life. They were willing to try anything to make the story work and are devoted to the revitalization of downtown Sevierville. You can too—come downtown and visit!

This blogger, DB Photography, a Sevierville Commons member and an Instagram savvy downtown worker enjoyed this photoshoot and we have ideas for more in the future. These photos present just a few ideas for Instagram-worthy spots in downtown Sevierville; however, there are probably many more. What are your favorite picture spots downtown? Let me know. There could be a Part II !

In the meantime, we’ll see you out and about in Sevierville. 

SCHS Homecoming 2017

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It was perfect weather for Friday night lights and SCHS Homecoming festivities at Burchfiel Stadium.

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Lisa, Debbie, and I entered the stadium and ran into some Smoky Bear fans. I know their mom, Holly Carr, and know that she must be very proud of them!

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Band moms helping out by selling ‘thunder sticks’ to create noise to confuse our opponents.  Allison should bring those to work so we can use them there in certain circumstances. 🙂

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Tabatha Ogle selling treats to benefit the SCHS band. Let’s see what they have…

I have been told that the ‘Band Crack’ is quite addictive so I was scared to try it. Let me know what you think!

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I always like to go up and say hello to Mr. Gary Roach, retired principal of SCHS. He is pictured here (from left to right)  with his wife, Darlene; daughter, Sandra; and grandson, Zach.

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Recently appointed SCHS Principal, Stephanie Huskey, is cheering on the Smoky Bears near the top of the stadium. She is also an alumnus of the high school. Great things are happening at SCHS this year!

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The man. The legend. Doc Ramsey.

SCHS Band Director Emeritus.

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Next, I went down to the field to photograph alumni participants in the homecoming festivities. The student section was watching homecoming intently for the winner.

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Here are some members of the Alumni Band ready to join the pre-game show. These graduates belong to the class of 2017. Welcome back!

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These band members were from the 1980’s. They still rock the purple and white!

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The student section prepares to rock.

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Under the direction of Nathan Rhea, SCHS Choir members sing the Alma Mater.

I caught the last part of the “Star Spangled Banner.”  Beautifully done!

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The Homecoming court exits the field after crowning the queen.

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Smoky Bear football players run from the stadium down the to the field. Time to get out of the way!

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The press box is a long way up, but the view is worth it.

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The scoreboard is busy with announcements. This one invites the crowd to visit services at the Sevierville First United Methodist Church, for both a traditional and a contemporary services.

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My camera is not great in the dark, but you can see the announcement from Alex Barnwell and the Horace Mann Company. I recommend him!

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The SCHS band begins the halftime show.

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Great performance by the SCHS band!

 It is great to get out and about in Sevierville to enjoy fall, Fridays, and football.

Go Smoky Bears! 

A Visit to the Spa at Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort

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I was sorry that I missed a friend’s birthday party here last week. They reported that it was a nice experience. Fortunately, an appointment was open after work this afternoon so I was able to fit in a treatment. The spa was offering a special for locals who work in my field so I knew that it was the time to visit the spa. What a nice experience!

Welcome to Dollywood’s DreamMore Resort Spa.

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The front porch was inviting, but it was nearing time for my appointment so I couldn’t linger.

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The spa is located downstairs so stop at the top and enjoy the view. If you look toward the center of the photo then you can see the top of two extreme water slides in Splash Country.

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You don’t need an appointment to visit the spa so enjoy the beautiful ambiance!

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Having visited here before with my sister and her children, I know that this is the best spot in the building. The view is breathtaking. Take it in!

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It is an extraordinary presentation of Dolly’s albums and music. Amazing!

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The entrance of the spa is spacious and it radiates light.

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Once inside, the decor is comfortably posh.

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Everything is pretty.

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There is a door to the right that goes out to the patio. People can lounge there and enjoy a snack or beverage. I can imagine how nice that could be with friends on a warm day.

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The robes and slippers are hung with care. The lockers are almost invisible and blend in with everything in the room.

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The couples treatment room is ready.

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Even the floors are lovely.

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Bathrooms/changing rooms are immaculate.

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My room was so nice, warm, and cozy. Your mind will float away within minutes.

I tried an aromatherapy massage by Michelle and it was one of the best that I have ever had. She really does and good job and takes pride in her work. In addition, she makes sure that she is exerting the right pressure for you. The hand and scalp massage was superior to most that I have experienced in other places.  I was completely comfortable. Be sure and ask for Michelle!

A variety of products are for sale at the front desk.

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Checkout was quick and easy. Dee was warm, friendly, and helpful. In fact, I forgot my little gift bag on a table so she made an effort to call and text me before I left. I really appreciated that she went to that effort for me.

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You can’t help but admire the design as you leave the spa.

The resort is ready for fall. Festive notes of autumn are here and there.

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This new event looks fun!

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I see our lovely friend Peggy, pictured right, in this ad for the spa.

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This Thanksgiving meal must be amazing!

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As you walk through the front door, you will want to linger on this porch and to sit a while  in the rocking chairs. How nice it would be to sit and look at the mountains for a while.

My friends and I will return to the Dollywood DreamMore Resort some day. It is a spa fit for a queen…like our queen of country music here in Sevier County.

The Dollywood DreamMore Resort Spa is a new favorite for when you are out and about in Sevierville. 

 

Sevierville Commons Art Crawl 2017

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It was a warm, glorious evening at the Sevierville Commons Art Crawl last week. It is the primary fundraising event so we look forward to it all year. With a wood-working art theme, the event was like a relaxing stroll with food and drink. Stroll along here with us to see what we enjoyed during the Art Crawl 2017.

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This was our first sight on Bruce Street. XXX Moonshine has two locations: Pigeon Forge and Wears Valley. They have a great tent and their vendors are fun to talk to. In addition, Tennessee XXX Moonshine has collaborated with Dark Horse comics, creator of the Hellboy character in print and movies, to produce Hell Boy Hell Water Cinnamon Whiskey. To find out more, click the link below. Amazing things happening with this local distillery.

https://www.send2press.com/wire/hellboy-hell-water-selects-xxx-distillery-llc-of-sevierville-and-pigeon-forge-tennessee/

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Around the corner, we found delights from one of our favorite downtown restaurants: Bistro 109. Owner, Dustin Manning, brought our favorite items on the menu: orange-cranberry chicken salad, hummus with cucumber slices, and sweet potato fries. The table presentation is always beautiful.  We came back for dinner here later. Divine!

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Stefanie Johnson greeted us at the main table and helped us to get acclimated to the event.  We bought our tickets in advance at Citizens National Bank. (I got mine at the Kroger branch because they are open until 7:00 p.m.) After giving her the tickets and showing ID, we received wrist bands and began the evening.

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Next, we ran into Sevierville Commons Arts Council member, Andrea Wilson. I was delighted to see her in this top because we were both wearing Cabi! She knew that and gave me quite a surprise. Fun!

Friday’s restaurant had a nice  treat. I think that it was Jack Daniels chicken. The servings were generous. We also got a coupon for a free appetizer. Good deal!

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Sara serves treats from Courthouse Donuts. Get ready for some new things on the menu there!

Mom’s Vintage Kitchen offered her home-made pumpernickel bread and pimento cheese with a home-made puff. It was probably the best bread and pimento cheese that I have ever had. There were about 5 different kinds of cheeses in that pimento cheese. Oh my!

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Art Crawl attendees enjoying the evening as the sun went down.

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We are always glad to see Healthy Balance at local events because we know that they will bring something good for the body. Skewers with tomato, basil, and mozzarella cheese were a great appetizer.

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David Elrod’s friendly smile always attracts attendees to his tent. His presentation and products always contribute to an enjoyable experience.

Old Forge brought several treats. It is apple time!

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Karen and I inspected the beautiful workmanship in the bowls. They were so smooth and lovely. Woodworking artists Roger Jessup, Ralph Obenauf, Otto Preske, and Jackie and Janis Proffitt were available to answer questions about the items and the craft.

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Old Forge Distillery entertains and refreshes.

We were most impressed with the woodworking items from the Sevierville Senior Center.

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Our favorite item was this piece of wood with a photograph transposed on it. I would love to learn to do this technique. What a magnificent keepsake. The sunset is reflected in it.

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The Shantons enjoy sunset on Bruce Street during the Art Crawl.

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Sugarlands Distillery always brings delightful refreshment to local events. Indeed, it is always a crowd pleaser.

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I was delighted to run into my  Dominican Republic travel friends, the Conerly family. They enjoyed the evening as the sun set on Bruce Street. Sophia is a member of the Sevierville Commons Association and always has exciting updates to share about the revitalization of downtown Sevierville. Stay tuned!

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I wanted to linger at Charlotte Wear’s gallery, Charlotte’s Bruce Street Creative,  but time was limited so I grabbed some fliers with info about her October activities. Can’t wait to go there and create something wonderful next month!

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Old Smoky Moonshine brought a nice punch type of drink. They were friendly and ready to help us have a nice evening.

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I always enjoy the music and ‘vibe’ provided by musician Ross Paul Heatherly.  Ask him to play some Hendrix and you won’t be sorry!

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Austin Williams and Stefanie Johnson thanked vendors and attendees for supporting the 2017 Art Crawl. In addition, they drew the name for a winner of the art door prize. It was one of the beautiful bowls that Karen and I had admired earlier in the evening.

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Shadows are falling as the sun sets on Bruce Street. Jim McGill sits at the table ready to help attendees.

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The Pottery House Cafe is our favorite place in Pigeon Forge. Shrimp and grits, anyone? Oh, yes!

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Karen found water and tea located at the gazebo. Such a pretty place in the evening.

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It was so nice to have more time at the Art Crawl this year. Rather than 8:00, the event ended at 8:30 this year. It was so nice to relax while watching the sun go down on the courthouse bell tower. Kudos to the Sevierville Commons Association and the Sevierville Commons Arts Council for an enjoyable September event. We can’t wait for the next one!

Plan on attending the Art Crawl next year. It is one of my favorite ways to get out and about in Sevierville. 

 

What is going on in Sevierville during Labor Day weekend 2017

Someone used search terms  ” what to do in Sevierville on Labor Day weekend” on my website so I decided to list a few things that I know are going on this weekend. Blog traffic picks up on holidays so here are some suggestions for our visitors this weekend. Most activities are in Sevierville, but a couple are nearby. I used some screenshots to get this blog completed quickly. Here are some local Labor Day activities. 


Check out the Sevierville Commons Farmers Market tomorrow. There will be great vendors with many gift ideas and fresh produce. I have been doing some Christmas shopping there already. 


For the first time, our fair will last nine days and two weekends. This is a wonderful small town fair with food and fun for the whole family. The best food from the booth by Sevierville First United Methodist Church. Step right up! 

Do you like Jeeps? Then this may be for you! 


Something new is opening in Gatlinburg and it looks like fun. 


Labor Day weekend means BBQ. Find some at Bass Pro Shops. 


Bring your lawn chair and snacks to the Sevierville downtown gazebo for a free movie. I love the 80s! 


This may be the greatest thing in town this weekend. Go to the Dollywood website for tickets and more information. 


Go just up the road to enjoy this equestrian event. 


I think that my friend Tad Wynn may attend this event. It is just up Chapman Highway from downtown Sevierville. 


Art is downtown Sevierville. Check out several artist gallerys. This is one of my favorites! 


Find a bargain at Bloomingtales Boutique at 202 Parkway in Sevierville. Proceeds go to to Pets Without Parents, a local no-kill animal shelter. 

Also, find more treasures at Treasures From the Heart thrift store at 230 Court Avenue, Sevierville. 


We have one of the best boutiques in Tennessee. Congratulations to Loralei’s! Find it easily at 1235 Dolly Parton Parkway, Suite 7, Sevierville, Tennessee. 


We also have the best doughnuts in East Tennessee. Go to Courthouse Donuts in downtown Sevierville, across from the courthouse. 

Those are some fun things going on this Labor Day weekend if you get out and about in Sevierville. 

Enjoy the weekend! 

An Early Visit to a Sevierville Tradition: Sims Barbershop


Someone I know gets a haircut at 4:30 a.m. every two weeks. What kind of place is open that early? I have walked by this Bruce Street business often and have even waved at the gentleman inside as I have walked by to the farmer’s market. I wanted to know a little more about Sims barber shop, a Sevierville institution; however, I don’t think that I have ever set foot in a barbershop. It was a place that I had never visited before so I needed a guide. A navigator. Jayson Nave fit the bill. Follow along as I visit a Sevierville tradition and, in the process,  meet a huge Tennessee Vols fan. This is a Bruce Street favorite. 


I thought that Jayson would be there about 4:45. Here is a shot of the clock on my car showing the early hour. Alas! Jayson was already finished with the cut and waiting for me. 


Bruce Street is practically deserted at 4:48 in the morning…except for the light in Sims Barbershop, to the left. You can park right in front of the door at that time too!


Mr. Johnny Sims was so friendly and cheerful at that early hour. What a wonderful feeling when you enter the shop because you walk into a Sevierville time capsule. There was so much history to see. Mr. Sims graduated from the Tri-City Barber College in 1959, then he opened the shop in February 1960. Mr. Sims’ father opened his shop three doors down over 60 years ago. 


First, I love the barber chairs! So traditional. Mr. Sims bought the barber chairs in 1959. 


Dr. Nave showed me how the barbershop system works. 

1. If you are the only customer then you sit in the left chair and get the cut you want. If there is someone in front of you, then take the chair to the right. More people can wait in the chairs along the wall. 

2. If you are waiting, find some reading material that interests you. 

3. Don’t interrupt the time with the barber and another client. (Sort of like at the beauty shop, or when you work out with a trainer at the gym). 

4. Customers are all walk-ins. I don’t think there is a phone there or an appointment book—and I like that. ‘First come, first serve.’ 


These prices have not changed in a long time. Mr. Sims said that in 1969, a haircut cost 75 cents  and a flattop cut was $1. 

Thursdays and Saturdays are the busiest days in the barbershop. The most popular cuts are:

  • Burr cuts
  • ‘High and tight’ military cuts
  • Regular hair cuts
  • Flat tops

And Johnny Sims can do ‘fades!’  These seem to be quite popular with athletes too. 

I would say that it is a good idea for local congressmen to get a haircut at Sims Barbershop while visiting downtown Sevierville. 


It would make me nervous to cut a congressman’s hair, but not Mr. Sims. He said that he felt no case of nerves cutting hair for political figures or others. Can you imagine?


This is an award winning barber and barbershop. I felt very comfortable there. 


Mr. Sims is a fan of Dolly Parton. In fact, he attended Sevier County High School, like her, although his class was 5 years ahead of Dolly’s class. 

Everyone is sure to love the big screen TV placed strategically in front of the main barber chair. It couldn’t be more comfortable or convenient. 

Mr. Sims is a Vol fan and supports all the teams: Lady Vols, Vol basketball, and, of course, football. 


Mr. Sims is a huge Vols fan, as you can tell by the memorabilia on the walls. In fact, he closes his shop on home game Saturdays two hours before game time, no matter what. 

He has attended Vol home games for over 45 years, with seats in the horseshoe of Neyland Stadium. 


These hours are great for customers. Mr. Sims may be the hardest working barber in East Tennessee! He is closed on Wednesdays and Sundays. 

This is the original barbershop pole that he bought in 1959. It doesn’t work right now, but still is a traditional sign of the service. I wish that someone could go there and fix it for him. How cool would that be? 

I  enjoyed this visit to Sims barbershop and felt so welcomed that I can imagine how customers feel there. In fact, I told Mr. Sims that if I were a guy then I would certainly get my hair cut there too. It was enjoyable to see and hear things about the shop from so many decades. I appreciated Dr. Jayson Nave introducing me to Johnny Sims, proprietor of Sims Barber Shop. Dr. Nave knew what I needed to see and hear about the owner and the shop for this story. And what a good story it is,  because the barbershop has served this town for decades. Clearly, it is a Bruce Street destination. 

I’ll be sure to continue to wave each time that I pass there because Mr. Sims is a Sevierville institution. Make sure that you do the same when you are going down Bruce Street. Mr. Sims will certainly smile and wave back. 

I’m glad that this blog makes me get out and about in Sevierville. 


Downtown at 6:15 in the morning as I headed back home to get ready for the day. 


Not stirring yet, but Courthouse Donuts is beautifully lit up from within. 

A Summer Vegetable Supper by Barbara Tenney at KaTom: August, 23,2017

Vegetables are in abundance now so it was the perfect time for a vegetable supper cooking demonstration by culinary expert Barbara Tenney at KaTom Chef Supplies. I am a BT groupie and knew that it would be good so I hurried up highway 66 to make it to the 6:00 class. It did not disappoint! 

Menu

Cucumber and Onion Salad

Sour Cream Cornbread

Southern Green Beans

Fresh Tomato Pie

Blackberry Peach Cobbler


Laura Dickerson introduces Barbara Tenney to class participants. Barbara is an award winning recipe creator, caterer, cook, culinary teacher, and, often, a cooking presenter for WBIR. With all that experience, Barbara has stories to tell and cooking tips for the novice or the expert. I like the stories the best! 


The first course was a cucumber and onion salad that was both refreshing and cool. Certainly, this dish would be perfect for picnics and cookouts too. 


Charlotte Tatum enjoyed the evening with her mother, Nancy Hayes. I always enjoy seeing them here!


The tomato pie was a crowd pleaser. Not really like pizza, but the pie shares many of the same ingredients. 


Sherry and Samantha Moore are also from Sevier County. They, also, have attended other classes at KaTom and look forward to the events. I recognized them from the David Pinckney cooking demo a few months ago. They work at Catlettsburg and Boyd’s Creek schools in our county. 


You have had green beans and new potatoes before, but I assure you that these may be the best ever! So tender. 


Pam Parker and Jani Chollman are from Strawberry Plains, just a couple of exits up the interstate. They, also, have attended classes before at KaTom and enjoy the relaxing atmosphere while learning something new. They are high school teachers and enjoy learning news things, like cooking delicious dishes. 


Barbara prepared the blackberry cobbler and instructed us to be careful about not placing the dough too close together. In the meantime, she also told a funny story about a couple try to make chicken and dumplings…but ended up with a 5 pound dumpling. 


Time to bake and a few minutes to shop. We walked around the store and look for good things to bring home.  There is always something for sale. Also, you can sign up for email alerts for upcoming cooking classes. 


Can you say cornbread with Cruze Farm butter milk? And sour cream? Divine! 


Voila! Dinner is served. 

Blackberry peach cobbler with vanilla ice cream. Amazing!

Barbara talks with my table mates. Pictured left to right: Nancy Frolio, Milford Blair, Shirley Blair, Barbara Tenney, and Geraldine Jinks. I love to see Shirley and was delighted to find out that I was assigned to her table. Nancy, from Dandridge, spends part of the year in Mount Pleasant, South Carolina. That is a summer haunt for my friends and I. How fun to hear that Page’s Okra Grill in Mount Pleasant is a favorite for Nancy, Shirley, and my group of beach friends. 


I found my Christmas wish list items! 

What a great evening with nice foodie friends and one of my favorite culinary rock stars in East Tennessee, Barbara Tenney. Follow KaTom on Facebook and look at the ‘events’ category to see upcoming cooking demos. They are a favorite way to get out and about in Sevierville. 

A Great Night at the Smokies Ballpark: August 18, 2017

I was excited to go to a Smokies game for it is a great activity for a summer evening. However, when I found out that we were going to watch it from a suite then the game became even more exciting! Always wondered what a suite looked like and how it was to watch a game from on high. Last night, I experienced a Smokies baseball game from a suite. Here is what we saw during the game last night. 


Tickets were obtained from my friend’s brother, the host of the suite. It was sponsored by Jasper Engines. We walked up to the ‘will call’ table and had tickets quickly in hand. 


First, we noticed the van from my favorite morning station, Star 102.1.  I love the Marc and Kim show to wake up in the morning. 


Tyrone “On Phones” was at the table and talked to us a few minutes. I had asked him about a story I had heard on the radio, but was not able to hear the ending. He is such a nice young man, as you can gather from listening from him on the radio. Known for his personal style and easy going manner, seeing Tyrone was a great way to start the evening. 


We went up a special elevator (just one floor) and walked down the hall to find suite #1 . We passed the broadcasting room on the way. 



The suites are not overly large, but they are air conditioned! Also, there is food and a mini-refrigerator for beverages. This is the view from the front door of our suite. So nice!


The suite rental can involve your choice of food and drinks. 


Our group enjoys the game with great seats! Pictured in  front are newlyweds, Millie Derrick McFalls and Doug McFalls, and suite host, Mark Derrick. Back row: Penny Derrick, sister-in-law to Millie and Melinda; a Smokies fan; and Melinda Derrick. Mark Derrick is the brother of Millie and Melinda. 


There is another benefit of renting a suite at Smokies stadium. Meet Homer! 


A sweet visit from Homer made a memory for little baseball fans. Soon, my friend and I decided to stroll around and see parts of the stadium that were new to us—-starting with the upstairs suites. 

We saw people in this suite, but I wasn’t sure who they were. Later, someone said that they saw Randy Boyd on the Jumbotron screen. I think that he may be our next govenor so that was exciting. Wish that I had run into him in the hallway or the elevator.  



I probably wasn’t supposed to be in this area, but there was no barrier. It looked like a great place to watch the game. 


There were many jerseys and posters of former players displayed in the hallway. I felt lucky to see this player at Smokies Stadium before he went to the pros. 


Lots of refreshments and sports fans around. 


We took the steps down to the first level to walk around. The stairwell was large. This was on the wall on the way down. How lucky we are to have a ‘farm’ team in our county!


Real baseball fans will appreciate this sign that was also found in the stairwell. 


You never know who you will see at a game! Millie and Doug McFalls taking a stroll around the stadium. 


We wanted to walk around the stadium to see it from different vantage points. We walked to the right to explore. This view is from right field. 


We were on alert to the sound of bats cracking and hitting balls because you can get hit at a game. I really didn’t want to get hit in the head. In this area, we relaxed a little bit knowing that the chances were less likely here. 


An interesting alley behind the scoreboard. Young guys were running around with baseball gloves in this area in case of fly balls. 


The Smokies were behind at this point. 


My favorite time during a baseball game, especially on a hot day, is when night falls and the lights turn on. Love it!


We found this snack rail to be a paradox in advertising. 


We eventually returned to our seats and enjoyed the kids running on the field between an inning. Looks so fun! 9


When it was finally time to go, we slowly walked down this corridor to the elevator, appreciating the history on the walls. 


Isn’t this the best elevator in town? 

A Smokies baseball game is one of the best family activities available to us during the summer and a great way to get out and about in Sevierville. 

I completely enjoyed my time in the suite with the Derrick family and the Jasper Engines company and hope everyone gets the opportunity to see a game this summer in the time that we have left. 

See you at the stadium! 

Farmers Market and Birthday Cake: August 11, 2017

Lots going on so I am just now getting to post about the downtown Sevierville Farmers Market last Friday. As usual, I parked in the lot across from Sevier County Bank because it is so pretty strolling down this street. 


As I approached the courthouse, a funeral procession proceeded slowly down the street. The young man pictured above stopped, removed his hat, and placed it on his car until the procession had passed down the street.         Respect. 


I will only have one more Friday to visit the market due to work hours. It has been a great market season. 


My first stop was the UT Extension office. The recipe and sample was so good that I made it yesterday at home. So good, but go easy on the jalapeños! 


What a wonderful service the UT Extension office offers to the community. Great recipe!


This jewelry always stops me in my tracks. Beautiful, unique, and finely crafted. The vendor is quite friendly so stop for a chat. 


I always stop to look at this booth and have bought several gifts here. Remember that the vendor is an ice skating choreographer; in fact, he has toured with some very world renowned skaters. He recently went rapellling at a waterfall so that was an interesting chat. Stop by!


This is a great booth. I have bought some ‘ bath bombs ‘ beacause they are an easy way to take magnesium. Always friendly. Ask her about the big gust of wind and her tent last month. 


Local honey is good for your health. They sell it in various forms, plus bee pollen that you can add to smoothies or yogurt. 


Going to have some new Iris plants next spring! 


If you look at these bagels more than 10 seconds then you will end up buying one. 


Henderson’s always has a crowd with their good produce. They have been selling in Sevierville for decades. 

On the way out, I stopped at Mom’s Vintage Kitchen to order a birthday cake for my father. We had a celebration the next day for his 85th birthday so it required something special. On a whim, I ordered a strawberry cake with buttercream frosting.  Give her 24 hours notice for cakes because she makes a lot of them and other pastries. After reading this menu board, I wished that I had more time to have lunch there; but alas, it was time to go. I made arrangements to pick up the cake the next morning. 


I picked up the strawberry cake by 10:30 the next morning. 


I spied another pick up order on the counter and the cupcakes looked decadent. 


Mom’s makes cute children’s cakes. 


But my dad’s cake was a masterpiece! We used to eat lunch years ago at Eva’s in Bearden, often ordering the strawberry cake. We decided that this one may be even better than Eva’s—-if that is even possible. You must try it! The cake was rather tall and dense because it felt like it weighed about 8 pounds. It could easily have served 15 people. 


Everyone agreed that it was wonderful. The best birthday cake that I think I have ever had. Just amazing. 


It was one of my last Fridays to visit the downtown Sevierville farmer’s market, one of the best ways to get out and about in Sevierville. 

Save a bagel for me!