After a long Sunday on the road, we were greeted with the red carpet – literally – as we arrived at the KOA in Crossville, Tennessee! We realized that we had actually stayed there before but had not received the red carpet treatment in the past. We enjoyed a restful night then got an early start for a short drive to Nashville, where we planned to stay for two nights and take in the sights of the “Music City.”
Conveniently located close to downtown, the Nashville KOA offers a shuttle for $10 roundtrip that takes you to Broadway, where basically everything worth seeing is located. We hopped on the 2:00 bus and headed to town! We were there till 8:30 and then returned the next morning at 10:00, staying until 6:00 in the evening. Summing up our two-day Nashville adventure and recommending the trip to all…
When you go to Nashville, visit the Country Music Hall of Fame but be sure to give yourself ample time to see it all. We got there 2 hours before closing and were assured that was enough time, but it really wasn’t. In addition to the permanent exhibitions, we enjoyed feature exhibitions spotlighting Loretta Lynn, Shania Twain, and Bob Dylan’s contributions to country music. So much to see…so little time! Make sure you have enough to fully experience the Hall of Fame!
When you go to Nashville, stroll down Broadway and experience the more than 45 honky tonks and music of every variety. Music plays daily from 11:00 a.m. until 2 a.m. and in most places there is no cover and the drinks are reasonable. Here are just a few to consider…
- Tootsie’s Orchid Lounge – Kris Kristofferson and Willie Nelson lived upstairs in their early Nashville days. There are three floors, including a rooftop, with bands on every floor! Look what we found on one floor – that’s right – a cigarette machine!
- Robert’s Western World – Where else can you get a fried bologna sandwich, a bag of chips and a PBR for $5? Known as “Nashville’s Home of Traditional Country Music,” we experienced the music of John England and the Western Swingers, who have played at Robert’s every Monday since July of 2001! One of the band members, Pappy, is 88 years old and plays a mean fiddle!! A word of warning, however, if you’re there during a shift change, don’t leave your money on the bar – the new barkeeps will just whisk it away with no comment – that didn’t sit well with Bartender Bill and he let them know. I just kept drinking!
- Wildhorse Saloon – This is perhaps the most well-known bar on Broadway and the largest (66,000 square feet on three floors). You can eat, drink, listen to rising star musicians and take a line dancing lesson – what more could you want?
- Legends Corner, Tin Roof, The Stage, and Layla’s – just a few more to consider and there are many, many more!
When you go to Nashville, you must sample the barbeque! I don’t think Nashville is known for its food, but the bbq is plentiful. We sampled the delicacy at these two spots –
- Jack’s BBQ – An order-at-the-counter hole in the wall with lots of choices. We tried the brisket and pulled pork!
- Puckett’s – Originally a local grocery, but now a more upscale BBQ stop. You are seated and served and each day they feature three meats which you can get with one, two, or three sides. They also have a full menu of other items – sandwiches, salads, burgers, etc.
When you go to Nashville, a tour of the Ryman Auditorium is a must! Known as the “Mother Church of Country Music,” the history of the Ryman is extremely interesting. If you take the backstage tour you will sit in four of the actual dressing rooms that were used by the likes of Johnny Cash and Minnie Pearl and are stilled utilized today. You will learn the history of this landmark and its importance to the city of Nashville. You will learn about Lula Naff, who was the manager of the Ryman for many years, and you will be amazed to hear about the vast number of performers in all areas of entertainment who have appeared at the Ryman Auditorium and continue to do so.
- In 1980, Johnny Cash was the youngest person ever – at age 48 – to be inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame.
- Cash’s Facebook page has over 10 million followers which is more than most living entertainers!
- Johnny Cash is the only entertainer in history to have songs on the billboard charts for six consecutive decades.
- Patsy Cline was the first country artist to have a residency in Las Vegas.
- Cline’s mother sewed most of Patsy’s clothes and costumes for her performances.
- Patsy Cline was killed in a plane crash when she was only 31 years old. Just imagine what she would have done for country music had she lived.
When you go to Nashville, stay organized, plan your activities, use our suggestions, and have an awesome time!
Stay Calm and Travel On…