DayJet comes to Tennessee

September 13, 2008

Earlier this year, James Fallows wrote an interesting piece in the Atlantic Monthly about DayJet, a remarkable new jet taxi service that began in Florida and was expanding throughout the Southeast. Now they’ve finally come to Tennessee.

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R.I.P. Gregory McDonald: Tennessean by choice

September 13, 2008

A remarkable person who chose to live in Tennessee died this week. Gregory McDonald was a the creator of “Fletch,” a crime-solving reporter whose exploits appeared in novels and in the movies. The video below is the trailer for a 1985 Fletch movie starring Chevy Chase.

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Arrowmont: Escape from Gatlinburg

September 10, 2008

The days of the Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts in Gatlinburg are numbered. The School appears to have a lease through 2011 on land owned by Pi Beta Phi, but the sorority/fraternity seems hellbent on selling the last remaining large chunk of land in the Tennessee equivalent of Myrtle Beach.

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Pi Beta Phi pulls hand-crafted rug out from under Arrowmont

September 9, 2008

The Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts, which has brought artisans and their students to Gatlinburg for decades, is in turmoil on learning that its 70-acre downtown campus will soon be sold. Pi Beta Phi, the sorority that owns the property, is close to inking a deal with developers to sell the land for an estimated hundreds of millions of dollars.

Arrowmont, according to an article in the Knoxville News Sentinel will get a pittance of the price of the land. “Pi Phi has pledged to give $1 million to the school, donate $2 million to Arrowmont for new facilities and invest up to $7 million in Arrowmont’s future.”

Photo from Arrowmont website

Photo from Arrowmont website

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Letterpress lives on with Hatch Show Print

August 31, 2008

Hatch Show Print offers visitors a look not only at an historical part of country music history but a chance to visit the most famous letterpress operation in the nation. A great piece in the Tennessean looks into the business of running 19th Century technology in a time of computer-generated type and PDFs.

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The Lion, the Ditch, and the Civil War Battlefield

August 18, 2008

The Aslan Foundation of Knoxville has come to the rescue of Fort Higley, one of the lesser-known Civil War forts in East Tennessee. As described in a story in the News Sentinel, the foundation bought almost 100 acres encompassing the remains of the fort, which lies downstream from the better known Fort Dickerson.

Fort Higley--photo courtesy of Knox Heritage, Inc.

Fort Higley--photo courtesy of Knox Heritage, Inc.

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Tennessean was the original ‘Roy D. Mercer’

July 31, 2008

Roy D. Mercer is a persona made famous by Brent Douglas and Phil Stone, morning DJs at WMOD in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The act consists of ‘Mercer’ called some poor soul, using information supplied by a friend or relative, and complaining about some consumer-related issue and making a request to be compensated with cash. When the person refuses to agree, Mercer issues a series of threats, most involving “an ass-whuppin.'”

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Daily Yonder features Knoxville’s WDVX

July 24, 2008

In an outstanding piece, the Daily Yonder website takes a look at WDVX, the East Tennessee radio station that began its life in a camper and now has its studios in the Knoxville welcome center on Gay Street. The station not only plays wonderful roots music, but holds free, noontime concerts every weekday featuring local bands and big-time country music folk who are passing through. I saw Del McCoury one day there, and the place was packed. Marty Stuart has played there as well.

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Thank God for Mississippi and pass the fried chicken!

July 18, 2008

When I was growing up, I used to hear “Thank God for Mississippi!” for keeping Tennessee off the bottom of various lists: school funding et cetera. Now we have to thank the Magnolia State for keeping Tennessee from the top of the Most Obese State list.

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Allan Benton on country ham and bacon

July 16, 2008

Here’s a wonderful video interview with Madisonville’s Allen Benton, whose country ham, prosciutto, and bacon have graced the menus of fine restaurants from coast to coast as well as iron skillets at daybreak in countless homes.

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