The Best Little 5K in Tennessee: The SCHS Foundation Turkey Chase 2018

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It was a chilly morning, but people came from 18 states and Canada to race in the SCHS Foundation Turkey Chase 5K race on Thanksgiving day. Although I couldn’t race due to hamstring issues, this was my third year to visit and it may have been my favorite. Follow along and see the ‘Best Little 5K in Tennessee.’

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Racers make the holiday run fun with festive headgear.

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Nancy Trundle Hewitt was busy checking in runners at the registration desk. Her team always pulls off a great experience with this event.

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The refreshment team was ready to work.

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A benefit of the race: all the doughnuts that you can eat from the Donut Friar in Gatlinburg.

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Fun photo ops with mascots.

 

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They are always such good sports with pictures. I hope that they weren’t freezing.

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Registrants receive a nice swag bag. I loved the T-shirts this year!

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These sisters attend the race every year. Nickelle was my ‘pace setter’ last year because I was behind her for the entire race.

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The Start/ Finish line was ready to go.

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Local runners were up bright and early.

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My colleagues, Heidi and Kathy, were ready to enjoy the morning.

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Great the t -shirts! Love purple and white!

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The sign-in desk gets really busy between 7:40-8:00 a.m.

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My fellow HIIT class friend, Anne, and her husband.

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I saw Judge Wade signing in and ready to run.

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This is a really fun race. I saw more festive headgear than ever before. I asked this gentleman if this hat was aerodynamic.

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These runners were from North Carolina.

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Race supporters come in several species. Cute pups were cheering on the leader just a few minutes later. This family came from South Carolina.

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Close to 200 racers were lined up on the starting line and ready to …GO!

This was the start of the 5K race. All runners will go around the track once then off to the front of the school property, then circle around to the track. Repeat 2 more times.

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And they were off! The course starts on the track then moves to the front parking lot of the school.

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All the encouragers used humorous signs to spur the runners on.

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This one prompted a few chuckles.

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One reason that I was glad to not be racing this year is the opportunity to take beautiful photos of fall racer scenes such as this one. The trees and morning sunshine were glorious.

This is my favorite spot on the 5K course.

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The front part of the course has beautiful trees that are just peaking the past couple of weeks. The flat course is also very popular.

IMG_0051 More race signs to encourage the runners.

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 Water break station in front of the Smoky Bears stadium.

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The final lap begins for my friend.

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My friend Heidi crossing the Finish line and we celebrate! She placed in her age group too!

I caught a hilarious race between the 3 mascots: a turkey, a chicken, and a Smoky Bear.

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If you look carefully, you may see a celebrity at this race. Drake was a participant!

Actually, that was Nicholas Fox from Charleston, South Carolina. This was his first 5K race ever! A powerlifter and Crossfitter, this runner said that he liked the race and hopes to come back every year. His family stays in a cabin and he found the race online. “The course is not too aggressive and there are some serious people here, but it is a relaxed race.”

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These racers came from Maryland and Florida. For one, it was his first race at SCHS. For the other, it was his first 5K ever. The racer on the left won 2nd place in his age group!

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Local athletes supported the SCHS Foundation 5K. From left to right: Emma Hamilton, Cindy Hamilton, Dean Hamilton, and Jennifer Whaley. I am going to visit their business, Sevierville Massage Therapy, soon to see if they can help me with my hamstring. Dean said that is one of the top three things that he addresses in his work.

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These racers have a good idea: do Thanksgiving on Wednesday and use Thursday to run 5Ks and do more activities. Heather (pictured left) comes from Ohio. Michelle and Chris are from Seymour.

IMG_0084 4 Bryan McCarter and his wife enjoying the program post-race. They are SCHS Foundation supporters and good 5K runners.

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If you run this race, you have a really good chance of winning a door prize. They are good too!

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Both the student and teacher volunteers did an extraordinary job hosting the event and post-race activities. I stayed for the whole thing! Well done.

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The overall winner of the 5K was Liv Paxton, a student from Rock Hill, South Carolina. It was her first time to race the SCHS Turkey Chase. Liv attends William and Mary College and runs on their track team. Her specialty? The 5K.  I saw her warming up in the parking lot as I arrived at the stadium and noted that she meant business. Her time will be hard to beat: 17.31.   Train hard for next year, people!

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Many, many thanks to Nancy Trundle Hewitt, Executive Director of the SCHS Foundation, and her team,  who orchestrate this event each year. She gets up at the crack of dawn on Thanksgiving morning to run the best little 5K in Tennessee. Nancy and my friend Heidi pose with Heidi’s award.

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Look for the race on eventbrite next year.

For race results, click this link.

http://knoxvilleyouthathletics.org/results/2018-smoky-bear-turkey-chase-5k/?fbclid=IwAR0geAfyl5TSDvzLYQwWCvuv_fpzImeYeEReBKHnccyzd-aDlhK8TuRr1ao

 

For more pictures, go to my Facebook page for blog pictures. I’ll load them after 9:00 tonight.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1254469567899261/

Art Happening November 2018: Featured Artist, Marilyn Davenport

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It was growing dark on Bruce Street as I parked and headed toward the Sevierville Arts in Common Gallery. The occasion was the November Art Happening in downtown Sevierville, featuring artist Marilyn Davenport. I have admired her work so this Art Happening has been anticipated for a while. Although I had to hurry to another event after 6:00, the Art Happening was nice and I wanted to linger.

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Upon entering the gallery, I first ran into Marilyn, her husband, and her niece. Pictured left to right: Scott Williams, Yvonne Williams, Marilyn and Bill Davenport. Some of the artist’s creations are featured on the wall behind them.

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Here are the ways to contact the artist and see more of her work. Isn’t this the most beautiful business card?

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I enjoyed seeing examples of the materials that Marilyn uses to create her art.

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Mendy Hodges and Scott Davenport attend the November Art Happening. Scott is Marilyn’s son and we were talking briefly about his mother and her workshop. Scott said, ” She loves to do this art and she, in turn, puts a lot of love into it.”

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It is nice to run into other local artists at the Art Happenings. Bobbi Lovell, pictured left, has paintings in the gallery. She is from Sevierville and has a studio near Douglas Lake. Jo Levkoff, pictured right, is a storyteller from Del Rio, Tennessee.

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Davenport’s jewelry is exquisite.

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Davenport uses polymer clay. It is especially interesting because the clay contains particles of silver, gold, bronze, and copper with the material.

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There is a sparkle and shine that is delightful to the eye.

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I love a fall table! The Art Happenings always feature refreshments so you can go straight there from work, grab a bite, enjoy art, and mingle.

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A sign of the season.

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Music was provided by New Mountain Grass. They have at least two CDs. One was recorded at Stella Parton’s studio in Nashville.

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Some things caught my fancy on the way out the door. Love these macrame trees.

I enjoyed this event and only regret not having more time to spend there. Happily, you can visit the gallery during the week if you need more time to look around. Some beautiful things are in there.

There will be a December Art Happening that will also serve as a Holiday Open House. That one will end the Art Happenings for 2018 quite well. See you then!

 

 

 

Holiday Demos Begin at KaTom for 2018

Local cooking expert/celebrity, Barbara Tenney, gave a holiday treats demo at KaTom last Saturday. The demonstrations are kind of like ‘mini-classes.’ She will be conducting these informal demos on several Saturdays leading up to Christmas. Sophia and I slipped into the one last Saturday on how to make Peanut Brittle—and it was divine! Here is what you need to know.

  1. The demos typically last from 11:00-1:00 so you can drop in and enjoy it.
  2. The holiday treats demos are informal, so just walk in and sit at the counter to get a good view and ask questions.
  3. I try to arrive close to 11:00 so I can linger and not be in a hurry.
  4. Barbara Tenney will make the treats in front of you so there will lots of opportunities to talk and ask questions.
  5. You get a copy of the recipe.
  6. You get to sample the recipe.
  7. In some cases, you may get to take home a sample.
  8. There is a cool sale room in KaTom where you can find some kitchen treasures for super low prices.
  9. You can browse the store afterward. There are a lot of gift ideas for the holidays. I am going back to shop again for Christmas gifts.
  10. The coffee machine!

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We observed this recipe for peanut brittle and it was excellent.

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A secret: you have to use Spanish peanuts. No other kind will be as good.

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Candy thermometers are a must to get it perfect.

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You must butter a granite counter first, then pour the hot batter out to pull. It cools quickly so work fast.

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Use gloves to pull the batter as it will still be super hot. Barbara said that thinness is key to good brittle. Break it apart.

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Almost ready!

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Voila! The finished product.

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My sample bag of peanut brittle! I shared with colleagues at work yesterday.

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I want this coffee machine!

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KaTom is ready for the holidays.

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Here are the upcoming dates for holiday treats demonstrations:

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Save me a seat at the counter!

A Fashion Extravaganza: Fashion For a Cancer Cure 2018

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One of the hardest working groups in our area put on a fashion show last week and it was truly a ‘fashion extravaganza!’ Heavy hors d’oeuvres, a silent action, and fashions from local boutiques entertained us for a few hours while raising money for continued research to eradicate cancer. What a fine event it was!

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You could buy tickets in advance or at the door as well.

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The fashion show took place in the Sevierville Civic Center. I love the 3D mural on the wall.

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Silent auction items were lined up along the wall. The tree had gift certificates. I see one now that I wish that I had bought.

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I know that the lovely table settings were a pleasant greeting for attendees after a hard day back at work on a Monday.

October is Breast Cancer Awareness with a pink theme, apparent throughout the decorations. I like the pink pumpkins and realize that I have never seen one before.

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I appreciated the extra pink touches to decorate for the Fashion for a Cancer Cure event.

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I have a cabi ‘pop up boutique’ and was lucky that Gail Hinton was one of my models. She was a showstopper! A cancer survivor, Gail modelled beautifully. I found out that she was a majorette and a model in high school and college, thus the poise! Gail is a muralist and has worked all over the country creating wall murals, paintings, and book illustrations. She showed me some pictures on her phone and I was amazed. In the photo above, Gail is wearing the cabi Step-Up Pullover and the famous cabi M’leggings.

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Cindy Andrews practices her turns wearing the cabi Celebration jacket and the Performance dress. Stunning!

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Four cancer survivors were cabi models in the fashion show (from left to right) Cindy Andrews, Rhonda Hodge, Sophia Conerly, and Gail Hinton. I am pictured right and was honored to have met this courageous ladies.

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Beautiful models and fashions from Loralei’s Boutique in Sevierville. So cute!

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Cancer survivors also modeled from My Dream Boutique. Here is a link to the Seymour boutique  https://www.facebook.com/mydreamboutiquetn/ 

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I love the color pink and it was a dominant hue during the evening.

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BAAK Boutique had some lovely fashions for mothers and daughters. Adorable! Here is a link to this boutique    https://www.facebook.com/baakboutique/

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Event Chair and organizer, Carlene Maples, addresses the attendees and tells of her personal battles with this terrible disease. She truly has been a local leader in fighting cancer.

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The Wright Stuff Catering provided the light dinner. I like the interesting serving glassware for salad dressings and fixings.

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Loralei’s Boutique had fashions available to buy in the lobby. Or, you can go visit her boutique on Dolly Parton Parkway. Here is a link to the Facebook page to see new fashions posted every day.   https://www.facebook.com/Loraleis.on.main/

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Table with gift ideas from My Dream Boutique. I lingered over the earrings.

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BAAK boutique had a variety of items. I like these things in the foreground of the picture so much.

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The Chest and Chair provided the stage sets. Here is a link to the Facebook page to see more.      https://www.facebook.com/thechestandchair/

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At the end of the show, Carlene Maples called up the models who are cancer survivors. It was a solemn, yet inspiring moment to see these special ladies who have fought the disease and have won. But there is more to do. Support Relay For Life and Cancer support groups as much as possible.

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Courageous ladies.

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Models and merchandise from BAAK Boutique.

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Loralei’s Boutique models and fashions.

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My Dream Boutique models and fashions.

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Cabi models with Carlene Maples (in the center)

I was well impressed with this event and look forward attending it again. The emcee was quite experienced and professional and I enjoyed her delivery.  The decorations were lovely and the food was very nice. In fact, I wish there would a fashion show for spring as well. Let’s ask Carlene if it can be done. If so, we’ll be there and ready to watch the runway.

For now, here are more pictures from the fashion show. It was a most enjoyable way to get out and about in Sevierville. 

 

 

 

Sheriff’s Spooktacular, 2018 Part 2: Courthouse Area

IMG_9291It was a nice 73 degrees as the sun set on Court Avenue around 6:30 p.m., but the Sheriff’s Spooktacular was just getting started. Families were out early to get a jump on the evening.  I was glad to see all the costumes and fun. Here is what it was like at the Spooktacular during the early evening last night on Court Avenue around the courthouse.

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The Sevier County Sheriff’s Office was a central command post for candy.

IMG_9296       The Sevierville Police Department had a good location for giving out treats.

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Courthouse Donuts had a great view of everything from their location as they passed out treats.

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Hatfield and McCoy Dinner Theater had a great location in front of the courthouse.

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Seasons greetings on Court Avenue.

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Local author, Missy Barrett, giving out treats.

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Relay For Life helping inform and giving out treats at the Spooktacular.

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Beautiful Star Wars characters.

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So cute!

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The Fire Department was on the scene to deliver treats.

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Lines were long, but people were happy, patient, and enjoying the evening out and about.

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Nice table with the best Jack-0-lanterns.

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It is always a good time to take a photo with the Dolly statue.

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The kids’ slide was non-stop action! Conveniently located near the courtrooms.

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You can really enjoy the creativity of costumes at the Spooktacular.

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A photo op here for social media.

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True to the theme, there are some spooky characters around to keep you on your guard.

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Fire fighters in the holiday spirit.

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This ‘character’ would occasionally growl and jump at passersby, adding to the fun.

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The ‘haunted jail.’

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Always glad to see the Shriners. They do such good work for children.

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This family should have won for the best costumes. So creative.

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The Pigeon Forge Police Department gave out doughnuts. I enjoyed mine last year!

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Sheriff’s Dispatch table was well manned to give out treats.

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These costumes were very good and kind of gave me the creeps. Very Halloween!

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Loved these co-ordinated outfits.

 

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Great table and slogan.

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A man of many talents. This job is not easy!

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My friend, Glenda, enjoyed being part of the Citizens Academy and highly recommends the experience. Looking cute and feline for Halloween!

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A baby shark.

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The sun was setting on Court Avenue and I had two more errands to run so I bid the Spooktacular farewell until next year. What fun and a massive event. Costumes, treats, music, and seeing lots of people that you know contribute to a nice evening with family downtown. We can thank the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office and emergency personnel who worked to make the Spooktacular happen. Thanks to local businesses who also joined the fun. It is a nice way to get out and about in Sevierville on a warm October evening.

Spooktacular Block Party 2018: Gazebo and Bruce Street Areas, Part 1.

IMG_9243I went to the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office Spooktacular Block Party last year and had a great time so I had not planned to go again this year. It was huge! However, when my schedule opened up at the last minute, I had to go and see it again. I arrived soon after the start time at 5:00 and was so glad that I did because I saw a lot of good things. This is part one of a blog story: the downtown gazebo and Bruce Street areas. I’ll publish part 2 tomorrow.

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Evergreen Church provided the ‘trunk or treat area area the gazebo last year and I think that they were back this year. The church members are so wonderful that it makes me want to go attend services there some time—even though I have a ‘home church.’

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Loved this theme—and the little helper.

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Beauty and the Beast!

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This was an incredible set to give away candy.

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Smile!

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This set is from the movie “Up.”

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Ready to take flight!

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We finally found Waldo.

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I found some old friends that I had not seen in years. So good to see them!

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It was 73 degrees on Bruce Street so the weather could not have been better!

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The Venue had a private event going on, but still participated with candy. I went in to take a look.

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I was scared to go much further.

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I heard a good sound system so you should consider this site downtown for events.

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This was a good way to get around the Spooktacular.

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The Sevierville Commons Arts Council was holding a ‘Make it and Take it’ on Bruce Street.

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People gathered round to make felt ‘monster’ finger puppets. So cute!

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A felt monster finger puppet with a bat. Love it!

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More candy near the gazebo from a nice family in seasonal colors.

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This family was perfectly co-ordinated. Loved their costumes!

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I would have walked past this sidewalk painting on Bruce Street if the artist had not been nearby and explained that it is a 3D mural. It was amazing! Look at the rope painted across the center.

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You stand on the rope and photograph it. It appears to be a pit, but the surface is flat. This was the best thing that I saw this evening. Fabulous and fun!

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Here is the website to find this Newport based artist. https://www.easttnartscapes.org

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Perfect weather and families out enjoying a safe Halloween event on Bruce Street. And that is just the half of it. Tomorrow, we’ll go on Court Avenue and take a stroll around the courthouse. It was a nice evening out and about in Sevierville…

United Way Presents 2nd Annual Downtown Sevierville Progressive Dinner 2018

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I attended the first Progressive Dinner presented by the United Way of Sevier County last year so I knew that it was going to be a nice evening. I met Sophia and Janice in front of Courthouse Donuts at 5:30 and we were on our way. It was a laid back, relaxing evening and a rare chance to visit Bruce Street in the evening. Follow along and enjoy with us…

 

We met at the gazebo on Bruce Street to begin the evening with fellow supporters of the United Way.

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Healthy appetizers were plentiful and tasty.

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Festive decorations revealed one of my favorite things to found at these events— delightful little chocolate covered moonshine candies. Only Sophia and Janice could tell you how excited I became to see these treats. They are delightful!

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It was good to see friends supporting the United Way from both sides of the table. It was a pleasure to talk to Terry here. The table could not have been prettier and the hosts could not have been friendlier. I highly recommend the Old Forge Old Fashion.

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Old Forge consistently offers high quality service and cocktails at Sevier County events. However, they had more to offer later. Well done!

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We love Greek food so these appetizers were quite nice. Great choice!

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At 6:00, we were called to order and thanked for supporting the United Way of Sevier County. Next, it was explained how to split into two groups for the next dinner courses.

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My group crossed the street to have a salad course at the Arts in Common Gallery.

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We really enjoyed the fresh Strawberry Spinach Salad from Healthy Balance restaurant. Also, we enjoyed the visual treats beheld in the gallery. So many beautiful things. You must visit soon!

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Our next course was served a few doors down at the Sevierville Heritage Museum. The food was so good that I tried to replicate it today in my crock pot.

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It was fun to wander around see things in the Heritage Museum. You could easily stay for a couple of hours on your first visit.

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Sevierville Alderman and Sevierville Commons Board member, Jim McGill, and Sophia Conerly, also a Sevierville Commons board member, enjoying the displays.

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This exhibit was interesting. I danced on the Cas Walker Show when I was 6 years old. Twice. I hope no one reads that sentence.

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Look at the prices on this old flyer in the Heritage Museum.

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Who remembers these Green Stamp books?

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I love nightfall on Bruce Street with the tent illuminated for dinner!

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Dinner was very good and made me start thinking of the holidays coming next month.

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Janice Sorrell and Sophia Conerly enjoyed the tent in the cool weather before dinner.

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Harriet Berrier and Fran enjoy the Progressive Dinner. After a long career as an educator and principal, Harriet is running for the office of school board. Don’t forget to vote!

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Wine service during dinner.

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There were many young people who contributed to this event, as well as in attendance. Pictured left to right: Sierra Williams, Austin Williams, Katie Williams, Emma and Thomas Newman.

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I took a picture of Sophia taking a picture after dinner. We shared a table with Jim McGill, his wife, and more.

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Elise Massey helps with the S’mores table by Courthouse Donuts. We got to make our own and they were a nice finish to dinner.

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This event was really enjoyable due to the efforts of many people, particularly those pictured above. Pictured left to right: Katie Williams, Amy Harper, Sierra Williams, and Elise Massey.

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A cigar bar was available for those who wanted to indulge, or just stock up for the golf course.

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Dinner success was guaranteed with United Way Board member Elise Massey and her husband on the scene. I saw them working hard and appreciated their efforts!

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My favorite thing about the dinner may be the outdoor fireplace–and it photographs beautifully. See what I mean? Sierra and Katie take the chill off at the fireside.

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By 9:00, it was time to go home and get ready for the next day. This event was so nice because it was laid back, relaxing, and fun—all at the same time. The start time of 5:30 allowed people to transition from work to the event while enjoying both sunlight and sunset on Bruce Street. The restaurants are always good and have served as a dynamic force in downtown for years so I am always glad to see their fare at events. Bravo to Bistro 109, Healthy Balance, and Courthouse Donuts.

Thanks also go to event sponsors.

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My friends and I have enjoyed the United Way Progressive Dinner for two consecutive years and look forward to attending again. I believe that they have everything down for efficiency and maximum enjoyment—plus, you know that you are helping at least 17 groups in our community that are served by the United Way. See a list of them at this link:

http://www.uwosc.org/community-impact/united-way-community-partner-agencies/

This Progressive Dinner was excellent! It is one of my favorite ways to be out and about in Sevierville.

Food Truck Fridays Are a Hit!

 

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The first ‘Food Truck Friday’ event in downtown Sevierville is a hit! Now, if we could add an evening from 6-8 pm so people who can’t leave their jobs for lunch could visit then it would be even more exciting! Due to fall break, I was able to go downtown to see this event and here is what I found.

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Actually, coffee comes first. My first stop was Courthouse Donuts to get a skim Mocha Latte from the coffee cart by Refill Coffee. It is made to order right there and you got a free donut with your coffee.  The vendor was very nice and well prepared to make about any coffee that you would like.  He will visit several more times so check the Facebook page for Courthouse Donuts because that is how I found out about it. Mine was perfect!

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Blogger needs!

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Next, I followed the downtown workers and visitors to the gazebo area for lunch hour.

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One concern I had was how to eat lunch from a food truck with nowhere to sit—but Sevierville Commons Association had already considered that. There was a nice, long table to use for lunch. I like how it promoted community and conversations among lunch goers. Well done!

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Crepes are a specialty food and take a few minutes to make, but the final product can be sweet or savory perfection.

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A Nutella and strawberry crepe. Foodie heaven.

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I remember this vendor from the Bruce Street Brewfest and it was quite popular.

 

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Lines began to build up after 11:30 with the local lunch crowd. It was a good sight to behold.

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Knoxwurst offered some good high protein, Paleo diet choices who those trying to reduce their carbs. Leslie Strader let me take a picture of her order to get this pic.

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By  noon, the crowds were building and lines were 10-15 people long. This proves that people will enjoy food trucks and gathering for lunch downtown.

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This vendor has shops in Morristown and Jefferson City. Follow up lunch with something sweet!

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If you like frozen treats then this food truck will ‘hit the spot.’ They also offer samples.

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Food trucks have been a foodie phenomenon for the past few years so it is exciting to see them downtown. The schedule for the rest of this month can be seen in the first photo in this blog story. Check the selections for the coming weeks. Many people work in places that won’t allow them enough time to attend Food Truck Fridays so I hope that an evening could be added in the future. There is certainly something for everyone.

Don’t be in a hurry because food trucks cook and prepare the meals fresh as you order them. Enjoy the sunshine, good weather, and friends. Also, try some things that may not be easily found in this area.

Fridays just got more interesting to dine out and about in Sevierville…

 

Bruce Street Brewfest 2018

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Despite the remnants of Hurricane Florence heading our way, the weather held out for the Bruce Street Brewfest on Saturday, September 15—and it turned out to be a fine event. We saw many returning brewers, met some new participants, and ran into old friends. I was limited in my time there so here is a quick rundown of our visit.

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You get a nice souvenir glass at check-in.

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Some notable Knoxville breweries participate in the event. This Knoxville brewery is one of the best.

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Some breweries come from farther away— a testament to the popularity of Bruce Street Brewfest.

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The addition of food trucks adds an interesting addition to the event for foodies. They were fabulous!

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A local expert, Smoky Mountain Foodie, was impressed with the fried okra. Only $3 for a large serving. As good as Cracker Barrel!

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Attendees from every species enjoyed the day. It is nice that the event is dog friendly.

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We ran into Tobias Deckard, from Gatlinburg Brewing Company. He makes great artisan bread. Must try it again soon!

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We ran into Tobias several other times. Everyone was of good cheer!

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There are some local home brewers who are doing a great job. Perhaps I should write a story on that topic soon?

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This is an award winning home brewer. Every thing is good from this one.

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Jeff Large has been brewing for several years. The brand name is unique.

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A name that you won’t forget! I must ask the story behind it again.

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It was a busy day so I only had a couple of hours to spend at the event, but I wanted to see one of the best micro- brewing festivals in the state—right in our downtown. These are the pictures that I took because I didn’t want to intrude on anyone’s time or space. There is a laid back vibe so I just ‘went with it’ and thought to not write a blog about the day—but it is a great event so I changed my mind. Voila! Here is a quick look at what we experienced.

Craft beer is a booming business and there are many who appreciate it. These are exactly the people who should come back (or make a first visit) to the Bruce Street Brewfest in 2019. It is a very enjoyable way to get out and about in Sevierville. 

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Phil Bredesen Campaign Rally at Applewood Farmhouse

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Phil Bredesen’s campaign rally was well attended yesterday by local citizens at the Applewood Farmhouse Restaurant. This is an excellent candidate for the U. S. Senate so it was necessary to attend the event. I don’t go to many political rallies, but do so when I really like the candidate. Here is what I saw at the event.

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First, Melinda and I ran into some dear friends, Steve and Liz Petty.

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The Applewood Farmhouse was ready for the Bredesen visit.

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A line formed to sign in and enter the rally inside the restaurant.

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I signed in and was ready to meet the former governor. He is my choice for U.S. Senate.

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Excitement was evident as Bredesen entered the room. He entered quietly from another part of the restaurant so it took a minute to realize that he was there.

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Bredesen was introduced to the crowd as his wife stands to the left.

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Phil Bredesen spoke about his retirement and decision to run for U.S. Senate. The crowd was glad he decided to come out of retirement.

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Melinda enjoyed a moment with the candidate. I enjoyed my moment as well!

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A handshake with retired teacher, Dale Gilmore. We always enjoy seeing Dale!

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I didn’t realize that this was a casual dinner event so it was nice to try the AppleWood Farmhouse restaurant chili—and it was fabulous! A little spicy, but enough to make it good. There were tiny cornbread ‘crackers’ to dunk in the bowl as well. You must try this the next time you are at the AppleWood Farmhouse! Smokymountainfoodie approvesIMG_7432.

Everyone is encouraged to vote in November. This is the best vote for U.S. Senate.