Each holiday season, the Bristol Motor Speedway in Bristol, TN lights up with Christmas and holiday lights. Entrance is per car; you drive slowly around and into the racetrack (it's quite steep - the fastest half-mile in the world!), as well as down the separate dragway. There are hundreds of displays and scenes all in lights. About halfway through you can park and stop at the Christmas Village for ice skating, marshmallow roasting and shopping.
The Grand Ole Opry is the world's longest running live radio show. Started in October 1925, it was originally broadcast from the fifth floor of the National Life & Accident Insurance Company building in downtown Nashville. The show soon became so popular that the small studio was not able to accommodate the thousands of fans who came to see the live performances.
Over the years, the Grand Ole Opry was moved to successively larger venues, including the Hillsboro Theatre, the Dixie Tabernacle, and the War Memorial Auditorium. In 1943, the Ryman Auditorium became the home of the Grand Ole Opry, where it remained until 1974.
Nowadays, the Grand Ole Opry broadcasts from the 4,400-seat Grand Ole Opry House (pictured here). Every year, hundreds of thousands of fans from all 50 states and numerous foreign countries travel to Nashville to see the weekend performances. Every big star in country music has performed in the Grand Ole Opry.
If you like the Blues and Elvis Presley? This is your spot!!! The entire month of May is PACKED, so you need to plan ahead. As far as lodging is concerned plan at least 6 months ahead. I guarantee you will have THE time of your life... I lived in Memphis for almost 10 years and worked on Bealle st. for 6 of them and LOVED every minute. I miss the music and the atmosphere. The Loraine Motel ( where Dr King was killed is also right down the road from this location. Just a trolley ride away.
Dress Code: Comfy is your best bet... LOTS of dancing and walking. ( not necesarily in that order lol)
The Ryman Auditorium was built in 1892 by a steamboat captain, Thomas Ryman, and was initially called the Union Gospel Tabernacle. In the early years, the auditorium hosted traveling shows featuring such acts as Enrico Caruso, Charlie Chaplin, Mae West, W.C. Fields, and the Ziegfield Follies.
In 1943, the auditorium became the home of the Grand Ole Opry radio show, which was its main tenant until 1974.
Nowadays, the Ryman Auditorium features live performances of country music, gospel, bluegrass, pop, and rock. A small museum exhibits memorabilia from past performers, including Hank Williams and Patsy Cline.
If you want to spend nice evening in Knoxville, go to the river in downtown.
The First, you can sit in cafe watching the river.
Then it is so nice just have a walk along the river watching the play of lights in the water.
Oak Haven Resort is our favorite spot where we retreat when we want to get away from everything. Beautiful cabins built high atop the mountain, all amenities, self-contained, with wrap-a-round front porches and swings where you can look out over the beautiful mountains, relax and enjoy the sites. Cabins are tastefully decorated, fireplaces, washer/dryer, dishwasher, stove, frig, whirlpool tubs, jacuzzi on back deck with gas grill, all you bring is your food and drinks and toothbrush* Hundreds of cabins to choose from. All cabins are numbered, as to locate the direction of which one is yours. Tranquil setting.
Dress Code: Come as you are*
B. B. King's, Rum Boogie's, Elvis Presley's and the Hard Rock Café are all top quality clubs, but even the lowliest dives sometimes feature great entertainment. Many of the clubs also offer some great delta cooking like Bar-B-Q Memphis ribs and Cajun gumbo.
As described earlier and in following sections, you should really take the opportunity to enjoy some live music while in Tennessee. We had the chance to take in some downtown country bars as well as a live dinner/dance show - both were excellent.
Whether you're staying in Sevierville, Pigeon Forge or Gatlinburg, there are millions of things to do and places to visit. You might just want to check the Internet for some more info.
You'll find a Hard Rock Cafe in Gatlinburg as well as other bars and clubs. We usually stop there 'cause we always end up bying shirts and other gifts from the gift shop; so have a beer while at it!
There are a number of good shows to see in Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, including Louise Mandrell and Lee Greenwood, when they are there of course. Dolly Parton's 'Dixie Stampede' is fun to see once and the down-home food is good and plentiful.
Dress Code: The dress is pretty casual as one would expect, and even in the evening it's just 'nice casual.'
For starters, Blues City Cafe has GREAT food!! It's also where a scene from 'The Firm' (Tom Cruise) was filmed. It's at the corner of Beale St and Third. Dont' miss hanging out there on a Sunday night-there's a great, fun, hip band (FreeWorld) who plays there every Sunday. Their music is funky-psychodelic (almost Grateful Dead-like or Phish-y). But the whole crowds gets into it!! It's a great time!!
The Silverado Dance Hall and Saloon (new photo from recent trip).
Very cool. Sight for sore Michgan eyes. Good crowd on a Saturday night. Lots of people, and pretty girls. A DJ, playing good music, mostly pop country, some rock, and good dance floor, in the center. Couples crowded the dance floor, but it was orderly, and they knew what they were doing, and proceeded to promenade around the floor to whatever music was being played.
Dress Code: Casual. Of course, you can step it up to slick urban country if you want to be more noticed.
What a place to party! Good atmosphere, cosmopolitan country. Country that kicks, show-stopping lights, galloping horses, great band, and huge dance floor. And the people in Tennessee love to dance, and know how to dance. It is a treat just to watch. And believe me, there were some great looking people (girls) to watch! (I won't get censored for that, will I)?
Dress Code: Casual, urban country.
Right in the middle of the city.
It's just fun. Time flies when you go there at night. You meet lots of other people from everywhere.
Dress Code: Whatever you feel like wearing. Just as long as you aren't completely undressed!
Blue Bird Cafe and Norma's in Nashville.
You might run into a big country star at Norma's (maybe) and you might see a big star before they're ever a star at the Blue Bird if you go on open mike night (Monday's)
Dress Code: No dress code but be prepared to be quiet and listen to the entertainment on open mike night at the Blue bird.
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