Rockin’ The Commons

 

Sevierville Commons Arts CouncilRockin’ The Commons is sure to be a blast. The first Sevierville Commons Arts Councils capital campaign fundraiser will be a rockin’ good time!

Where else but Sevierville can you spend time rocking your cares away on a beautiful spring afternoon? The Rockin’ The Commons fund raiser is scheduled at the Gazebo, 136 Bruce Street in downtown Sevierville from 3 p.m. until 7 p.m. on Saturday, June 9, 2018. The free event showcases beautifully decorated rocking chairs painted by talented artists, and music provided by a local rock n’ roll group, The Reunited.

About thirty rocking chairs, enhanced by area artists, will be auctioned off to raise funds for the

Severiville commons arts council rocking chair auction

Rock away your troubles in this comfy, funky rocker!

Sevierville Commons Arts Council. The rockers are on display throughout town, but all chairs can be previewed online at SeviervilleCommonsArtsCouncil.org, on Facebook (@CommonsArtsCouncil), or during the event beginning at 3p.m.. The live auction, by Todd Thompson Auctions, begins at 4p.m. Live music featuring The Reunited takes place from 5 p.m. until 7 p.m.

Proceeds from Rockin’ the Commons will be used for renovation, operations and programming at Arts in Common Gallery located at 129 Bruce Street, as well as arts programming and operations.

For more information about or how to purchase a rocker, visit our website www.SeviervilleCommonsArtsCouncil.org or contact Andrea Wilson at andreas-studio@comcast.net, phone at 865-604-0577.

Sevierville hosts 14th Annual Bloomin’ Barbecue and Bluegrass

Come enjoy some pickin’, grinnin’, and good eats at the Bloomin’ Barbecue and Bluegrass festival! Artwork/photo credit – Shelby Coutu.

Sevierville hosts 14th Annual Bloomin’ Barbecue and Bluegrass. Load up the family and your appetites and come downtown Sevierville Friday,May 18th from 5 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday May 19th from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

Last year more than fifty ‘Cue experts descended on downtown to serve the tastiest food in Tennessee! Cooking teams from as far away as Nebraska, Florida, Ohio, Georgia and Virginia vied for the winning trophy in this official Tennessee State Barbecue championship and we are doing it again this year! A $15 ticket allows visitors to sample and vote for their favorite pulled pork in the People’s Choice Tasting Contest. Advance tickets are available by calling the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce at 865-453-6411.

Current rising country star and Curb Recording artist Mo Pitney will headline Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass on Saturday, May 19, beginning at 8 p.m. He will be featured in a very unique set showcasing his bluegrass roots combined with his current mainstream country sound. His show will feature some of his favorite bluegrass players and he is currently in the process of selecting special guests to join him for the 2018 Bloomin’ BBQ & Bluegrass Festival.

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Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Dates Announced

Great Smoky Mountains National Park is a sweet place to view the fireflies!

Smoky Mountain Synchronous Firefly Dates Announced. Great Smoky Mountains National Park officials have announced the dates for firefly viewing in Elkmont. Shuttle service to the viewing area will be provided beginning Thursday, June 7 through June 14th. All visitors wishing to view the synchronous fireflies at Elkmont must have a parking pass distributed through the lottery system at www.recreation.gov.

Every year in late May or early June, thousands of visitors gather near the popular Elkmont Campground to observe the naturally occurring phenomenon of Photinus carolinus, a firefly species that flashes synchronously. Since 2006, access to the Elkmont area has been limited to shuttle service beginning at Sugarlands Visitor Center during the eight days of predicted peak activity in order to reduce traffic congestion and provide a safe viewing experience for visitors that minimizes disturbance to these unique fireflies during the critical two-week mating period.

The lottery will be open for applications from Friday, April 27 at 12:00 noon until Monday, April 30 at 8:00 p.m. Results of the lottery will be available on Wednesday, May 9. A total of 1,800 vehicle passes will be available for the event which includes: 1768 regular-parking passes (221 per day) which admit one passenger vehicle up to 19’ in length with a maximum of six occupants, and 32 large-vehicle parking passes (four per day) which admit one large vehicle (RV, mini-bus, etc.) from 19’ to 30’ in length, with a maximum of 24 occupants. Lottery applicants must apply for either a regular-parking pass or large-vehicle parking pass and then may choose two possible dates to attend the event over the eight-day viewing period.

The lottery system uses a randomized computer drawing to select applications. There is no fee to enter the lottery this year. If

“The most impressive natural light show I have ever seen!” – Bill Durning.

selected, the lottery winner will be charged a $20.00 reservation fee and awarded a parking pass. The parking pass permits visitors to park at Sugarlands Visitor Center and allows occupants to access the shuttle service to Elkmont.

Parking passes are non-refundable, non-transferable, and good only for the date issued. There is a limit of one lottery application per household per season. All lottery applicants will be notified by e-mail on May 9 that they were “successful” and awarded a parking pass or “unsuccessful” and not able to secure a parking pass.

The number of passes issued each day is based primarily on the Sugarlands Visitor Center parking lot capacity and the ability to accommodate a large number of viewers on site. Arrival times will be assigned in order to relieve traffic congestion in the parking lot and also for boarding the shuttles, which are provided in partnership with the City of Gatlinburg. The shuttle buses will begin picking up visitors from the Sugarlands Visitor Center parking area at 7:00 p.m. A $2.00 round-trip, per-person fee will be collected when boarding the shuttle. Cash is the only form of payment accepted.

The shuttle service is the only transportation mode for visitor access during this period, except for registered campers staying at the Elkmont Campground. Visitors are not allowed to walk the Elkmont entrance road due to safety concerns.

Firefly Etiquette

  • Take a flashlight (it will be dark) and cover the lens with blue or red cellophane tape. Shine directly on the ground and use only until you reach your viewing site.
  • Stay on trails to protect firefly habitats.
  • Pack out all garbage (your mother does not work here!)
  • Do not catch the fireflies!

The HeySmokies expeditionary team never misses this event! Photo credit – Jerold Mills

Visitors may visit the website www.recreation.gov and search for “Firefly Event” for more information and to enter the lottery. Parking passes may also be obtained by calling 1-877-444-6777, but park officials encourage the use of the online process. The $20.00 reservation fee covers the cost of awarding the passes, viewing supplies, and nightly personnel costs for managing the viewing opportunity at Sugarlands Visitor Center and Elkmont.

For more information about the synchronous fireflies, please visit the park website at NPS.gov.

Shine And Dine On Bruce

Great food and music at Shine and Dine on Bruce

Great food and music awaits you at the Sevierville Shine and Dine on Bruce!

Shine And Dine On Bruce, or Cinco In The City, is an amazing day showcasing local food and live music in downtown Sevierville, Tennessee on May 5, 2018 from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m.

This 5th annual community celebration fundraiser benefits the Sevierville Commons Association. Area drink and food vendors will congregate all in one location for you to sample the best of the best. Local restaurants will be serving up some of the tastiest grub while a variety of distilleries will help you get your shine on!

Food and drink are not the only reasons to put Shine and Dine on your calendar, there will also be great music. The tunes will commence with the acoustic stylings of Rossdafareye’s laid back sound. As the sun races around to shine no more the 80’s cover band, The Breakfast Club, will take the stage. Be sure and get your big hair done and “Don’t you forget about me” will be our theme for the day!

We love Shine and Dine,” said Bill Smith, “My whole family will join me again this year and we plan on having a blast!

Tickets for the event are only $30 and this includes admission, food, drink, and live entertainment. If you don’t plan to drink alcohol or are under 21 years of age you may pick up your ticket for only $20! Either way you will get to eat some great food and hear some awesome live music in a beautiful outdoor venue. All of the proceeds of this event will go to support future events and growth in downtown Sevierville, TN.

There are a limited number of tickets available for this event so don’t wait, get yours today and be sure and bring you a comfy camp chair to sit back and take it all in. For updates visit Shine and Dine On Bruce.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park Cades Cove Clean Energy

Cades Cove solar array

The new Cades Cove solar array powers the Cable Mill visitor center and more! Photo credit – NPS.

Smoky Mountains National Park Cades Cove Clean Energy. The new solar array in the Cable Mill area of Cades Cove is up and running!

The new green energy project will reduce greenhouse gases by 23 tons thus reducing fuel costs by $14,000 annually. Until now the park used a diesel-fuel generator for powering the site which was noisy and adversely affected the natural experience of park visitors and wildlife.

This is a great step in making our park operations more environmentally friendly, said Park Superintendent Cassius Cash. The solar panels will provide a great, natural source of energy for the Cable Mill Area that enables us to provide a better visitor experience and to be better stewards of the park.”

The newly solar array boasts 80 photovoltaic panels that provide a quiet, passive energy source to serve the small visitor center, bookstore, and restroom facility at the unofficial halfway point around the Cades Cove driving loop. The panels can be found behind the restroom in an open area that receives maximum exposure to both morning and afternoon sun. A berm was raised around the array and planted with native plants to minimize disturbing visitors view of the historic area.

Cades Cove is one of the most popular parts of the Smokies and averages around 2 million visitors per year. Many visitors stop at the Cable Mill area to tour the old mill, blacksmith shop, Cable house and other historic structures located there. Due to the isolated location at the west end of Cades Cove, the Cable Mill area is completely off the TVA power grid and it is necessary to generate all power on site.

The Southeast Region of the National Park Service provided the funding for this project. The work was completed by Solar Power Integrators, a veteran-owned company. The Smokies is also home to another solar array at the Sugarlands Visitors Center near Gatlinburg which has been helping to reduce greenhouse emissions for several years.