From STAFF REPORTS
Tourism in Tennessee continues to expand with new attractions, impressive state-of-the-art developments, expansions and milestone anniversary celebrations of iconic attractions that help shape “The Soundtrack of America. Made in Tennessee.”
2019 marks several milestones in Tennessee, including Memphis’ Bicentennial, Bijou Theatre’s 110th anniversary in Knoxville, and the 25th anniversary of the RC MoonPie Festival in Bell Buckle. Embrace the history, relive the stories and create memories. Here’s what’s new in 2019 for Tennessee.
Tennessee Music Pathways
The pathways connect the traveler to the people, places and genres that make Tennessee the Soundtrack of America, from the largest cities to the smallest communities. Whether it is a story of the past, a star of the present or promise of the future, historic or live, Tennessee Music Pathways go where the music does.
Tennessee Songwriters Week
Songs penned in Tennessee make the Soundtrack of America. A new state statute passed, annually designating the last full week of February as “Tennessee Songwriters Week.” The week is designed to celebrate the foundation of the craft, recognize songwriters and pave the way for future artists.
Baxter Seminary Park
Baxter Seminary Park will include a new live music amphitheater and walking trails, set to open in 2019.
25th Annual RC-MoonPie Festival
A quarter century celebration of the ultimate Southern tradition: RC Cola and MoonPies will be packed with fun and a reunion of the past 25 year’s Kings and Queens on June 15, 2019.
Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Walk through the pages of storybooks in the exhibit “Reading Appalachia: Voices from Children’s Literature” February-June 2019.
The exhibit “American Ballads: The Photographs of Marty Stuart” Aug. 2019-Jan. 2020 features photos of the people and places captured by the country music star since he first went on tour with Lester Flatt at age 13.
100th Birthday of Tennessee Ernie Ford
Bristol native Ernie Ford was most notably known for his hit song “Sixteen Tons,” which sold 20 million copies. During his birthday week starting Feb. 13, there will be celebrations featuring his son, Buck.
Lost State Distilling
The new distillery produces small batch gin, rum and Tennessee whiskey. Lost State has a tasting room, production area, retail area and event space.
I-40 Solar Farm
Information and Welcome Center
The new welcome center and solar farm greets visitors traveling on I-40. An interactive exhibit, designed by the University of Tennessee, highlights the state’s advancements in renewable energy.
Hiwassee River Heritage Center
The interpretive center and National Park Service-certified site on the Trail of Tears National Historic Trail will expand with new exhibits and an education room.
The new upscale, five-story boutique hotel includes 90 rooms, meeting space, upscale décor, rooftop bar, local art and a restaurant.
Fallen Five Memorial
A dedication ceremony for an unveiling of a memorial honoring the five service members killed in the July 2015 terrorist attack on two local military sites will be in July 2019 at Tennessee Riverpark.
The new boutique hotel includes 102 rooms, free Wi-Fi, cushy beds, stylish design, vibrant community spaces, in-room storage (enough to fit a bicycle) and a bar.
Moon River Music Festival
The Moon River Festival moves from Memphis to Coolidge Park in Chattanooga. The two-day family-friendly festival Sept. 7-8, 2019 highlights the music and culture of Tennessee.
Read House Historic Hotel
Undergoing $20 million in renovations, the hotel will upgrade the 242 guest rooms with new technology and bathroom furnishings, as well as redesign the lobby, ballroom and restaurant.
Ruby Falls unveiled a $20 million expansion with upgrades like an outdoor observation area, improved ticketing experience, expanded retail, LED lights and additional parking.
The Signal is Chattanooga’s newest live music venue. The 1,300-capacity warehouse plans to host all genres of music, receptions, fundraisers, corporate events and conferences.
Ridley Sports Complex Expansion
The sports complex expands with seven new soccer fields including a championship field complete with bleachers, a press box, a new concession facility, restrooms and parking.
The Broastery · Tennessee Coffee Roasters
Cookeville’s only craft coffee roaster’s new storefront pairs with brands such as Jack Daniel’s Tennessee Whiskey to create locally roasted flavors and blends.
Saltbox Inn & Stables
Saltbox Inn & Stables now includes hosting areas at The Loft, Three Trees Ceremony Site, and The Greenhouse. The new lodging, Pumphouse Cabin, is directly on the property’s waterfall.
The Shoppes at Eagle Pointe
The new 25,000 square feet of retail space on 42 acres features 1,200 parking spaces with Publix, Academy Sports + Outdoors, Ulta, Michael’s and more.
Tennessee Legend Distillery at Maddux Place
A staple in East Tennessee, Tennessee Legend Distillery expands with a new sipping shop and free tastings at the historic Putnam County Courthouse.
Rhea Heritage and Scopes Trial Museum
The historic museum in the basement of the Rhea County Courthouse is now open after upgrades and renovations. It’s the site of the 1925 Scopes Trial over the teaching of evolution.
The Harpeth Hotel
The Harpeth Hotel will be located along Franklin’s iconic Main Street. The four-diamond, 119-room luxury hotel will feature a gourmet chef-led restaurant, spa, whiskey-focused bar, and walkability to Main Street. Franklin will open an additional six hotels in 2019, totally over 1,000 rooms.
Carter House Visitor Center
The Carter House, one of three historic museums on the battlefield of the Civil War’s Battle of Franklin, will open a new visitor center with a museum and orientation center, similar to its sister property, Carnton.
Leiper’s Fork Winery
Eric and Samantha Coghlan, who began their winemaking in California at the Coghlan Vineyard in 2008, now bring their award-winning wines and minimalist farming approach to Leiper’s Fork Winery.
231 Public Square & Ruby Sunshine
The newly renovated mixed-use development on the square on Franklin’s iconic Main Street downtown will feature Ruby Sunshine – a new concept from New Orleans’ famed The Ruby Slipper Cafe, along with locally-owned boutique shops and a rooftop restaurant and bar.
Grit, Grace and Grub
The new Grit, Grace and Grub food and bluegrass festival Sept. 7, 2019 will take visitors on a grub tour offering a taste of Gallatin’s local eateries.
Ole Red Gatlinburg
Opening Spring 2019, Blake Shelton’s Ole Red Gatlinburg features a two-story bar and restaurant, retail area, performance space, dance floor, outdoor terrace and Southern fare like hot chicken and waffles.
Hands On! Discovery Center
The brand new all-ages science center offers fun interactive programs and exhibits including a musical Tesla coil, giant building blocks and a maker studio inviting guests to engineer a rocket, create a masterpiece and uncover something new.