Mountain Life

Nov. 15, 2014 @ 01:01 PM

Jeff Farrell: Success of comet probe is amazing – and sobering

It was a little bittersweet to see the celebration of the Philae spacecraft touching down on a distant comet this week and relaying data back to Earth.


Nov. 14, 2014 @ 01:46 PM

Adriana Zoder: For the love of books – and pizza

Coming back from Knoxville one day, just before we took our beloved Exit 407, my son noticed the sign for the Great Smokies Flea Market. He asked what they sell there. We said: "fleas."


Nov. 13, 2014 @ 01:33 PM

Carl Mays: Do the little things right

What do you want to change? How do you want to make things different? What do you want to accomplish as an individual and as a team member? Whatever your answers might be, remember these words from retired Adm. William McRaven: "If you want to change the world, start off by making your bed. If you can't do the little things right, you will never do the big things right."


Nov. 08, 2014 @ 03:12 PM

Upland Chronicles: Smoky Mountain Historical Society preserves the past

For half a century, the Smoky Mountain Historical Society has been dedicated to preserving the past, weaving accounts of former times into those of the present with the records of history. The organization is devoted to the Smoky Mountain region, its pioneers and its posterity, and covers the three counties located on the Tennessee side of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park—Sevier, Cocke, and Blount. Its mission always has been to "perpetuate culture and genealogical studies and histories…and to promote a sense of pride through our heritage and connections associated with the Great Smoky Mountains."


Nov. 07, 2014 @ 06:25 PM

Carl Mays: 'God is near, do not fear...'

As Veterans Day approaches, I am reminded of the often-circulated story of how the military’s taps melody came into being. It is a beautiful story of how, one dark night during the American Civil War, a Union Army captain rescued a soldier whom he eventually discovered to be dead – and to be his son, a member of the Confederate army. Supposedly in his musician son’s pocket the captain found the original written melody and then gained permission to allow a solo bugler to play it at his son’s funeral.


Nov. 07, 2014 @ 03:07 PM

Kenneth Burns: I've had just about enough of books

I never thought I'd say this. I'm sick of books.


Nov. 01, 2014 @ 03:53 PM

Hilton honors Park Vista's George Jenkins for his commitment to service

Why does George Jenkins like to be of service? "Because that's who I am," said Jenkins, who is bell captain at the Park Vista a DoubleTree by Hilton.


Nov. 01, 2014 @ 03:43 PM

Upland Chronicles

The First Presbyterian Church of Sevierville was established Nov. 7, 1914. The organizational meeting was held in the First Baptist Church with 75 inquirers present. The First Presbyterian Church traces its beginning to May 14, 1911, when the Rev. John H. Wright, a Sunday School missionary with the National Board of Missions of the Presbyterian Church, met with prospective members in the home of M.C. and Jane Hatcher Carr, four miles south of Sevierville on Ridge Road.


Oct. 31, 2014 @ 03:49 PM

Jake Old: One year in, I’m glad I work here

Last week officially marked one year since I started at The Mountain Press. And since people still ask me this everywhere I go: Yes, I do enjoy the area and my job.


Oct. 31, 2014 @ 03:02 PM

Adriana Zoder: Book club opens up literary vistas

For the past few months, I have attended meetings of the Anna Porter Public Library Book Group. My life has been enriched through this experience. If your life could benefit from literary enrichment, please read on.


Oct. 30, 2014 @ 07:28 PM

Carl Mays: Halloween, a time of scary fun – and Christian reflection

The jack-o'-lanterns glow, witches sway in the wind, ghosts, goblins and other assorted spooks and creatures scamper around to celebrate and enjoy Halloween, the scariest night of the year.


Oct. 27, 2014 @ 11:58 AM

Upland Chronicles: Stained glass windows offer view of history

As the Methodist movement spread throughout England, John Wesley wanted the revival fires to burn over the colonies in America as well. In 1771, he sent Francis Asbury to preach in America. Faced with this huge task, Asbury asked, “What shall I tell them?” Wesley responded, “Offer them Christ.”


Oct. 25, 2014 @ 12:36 PM

Jeff Farrell: Siezed dogs weren't the least bit aggressive

The main thing that I'll remember about Tuesday's raid on an alleged breeding operation for fighting dogs was how well the dogs behaved.


Oct. 24, 2014 @ 01:22 PM

'Elf on the Shelf' coauthor based the concept on family lore

If you're a parent with young kids, you probably already have it. If you're not, you likely noticed when it took over your Facebook feed last December, and the December before that.


Oct. 23, 2014 @ 11:52 AM

Carl Mays: Treat people with respect – just ask Mary Kay

Driving down I-40 last week, I met a tractor-trailer transporting a dozen new cars. The pink SRX Crossover Cadillac sparkling in the bright sun caught my eye. There was no doubt in my mind that some Mary Kay Cosmetics superstar would soon be beaming just as brilliantly as she drove away in one of the most easily recognized sales incentives in the world. The scene brought back memories from 1986, when Mary Kay Ash, Jean and I shared a banquet table – and stories.


Oct. 18, 2014 @ 04:03 PM

Upland Chronicles: Fergusons' pottery helped mold Pigeon Forge

In the 1940s, Pigeon Forge was a sedate farming community – little more than a thoroughfare for tourists traveling to Gatlinburg and the Smoky Mountains. On May 15, 1946, Douglas and Ruth Ferguson opened the Pigeon Forge Pottery and unwittingly became a catalyst in the town's transformation from a pastoral village into a popular vacation destination.


Oct. 18, 2014 @ 03:32 PM

Adriana Zoder: The Track is a great place to bring little ones

We visit the Track in Pigeon Forge about once a year. When our children were babies, we did not think the day would come for us to join the crowd hovering around Light #3, waiting for their rides. But what do you know? We were wrong. That day came faster than we thought. As soon as our kids could sit in the little train and take a ride, we made our first Track visit.


Oct. 18, 2014 @ 03:00 PM

Kenneth Burns: The closing of Metro Pulse is a terrible loss

We lost a vital journalistic outlet Wednesday, when the Knoxville News Sentinel announced it was laying off the staff of Metro Pulse, the 23-year-old alternative weekly newspaper.


Oct. 16, 2014 @ 01:17 PM

Carl Mays: Be prepared to go with the flow

Most college football fans know that Georgia's Heisman Trophy-caliber running back Todd Gurley has been suspended indefinitely as an investigation about his signing autographs for pay continues. As his team faced an important SEC East Division game with Missouri in Columbia this past Saturday, many people declared the Georgia Bulldogs were in a heap of trouble. Sports fans know by now that Georgia won handily, 34-0.


Oct. 11, 2014 @ 11:39 AM

Upland Chronicles: Sevier County student competed in 1955 National Spelling Bee

Representing Pleasant View School in Sevierville, sixth grade student Robert Earl McMahan won the Southern Appalachian Spelling Bee sponsored by the Knoxville News Sentinel and went on to compete in the National Spelling Bee in Washington, D.C.


Oct. 10, 2014 @ 04:37 PM

Meet the artisans of the Gatlinburg Craftsmen's Fair

If you seek handmade pottery and jewelry, the Gatlinburg Craftsmen’s Fair is the place for you. Also if you seek handmade dolls, knives, leather goods, quilts, baskets, clothes, rugs, and glassware. Among other things.


Oct. 09, 2014 @ 06:04 PM

Carl Mays: Meals are better when they’re eaten together

According to the United States Department of Agriculture, October is National Eat Better, Eat Together Month. I’ve written before about the number of special months we have, covering just about every known subject. October itself has several designations, including such health-related observances as Breast Cancer Awareness, Dental Hygiene, Domestic Violence Awareness, Eye Injury Prevention and Health Literacy. All of these, and others, hold special places in many hearts and minds. Different observances imprint different people in various ways for various reasons.


Oct. 06, 2014 @ 04:18 PM

Upland Chronicles: McMahan Century Farm has a rich history

On Nov. 29, 1838, David Crockett McMahan received a 4,000-acre land grant located nine miles southeast of Sevierville. A section of the property included in the grant was called Richardson's Cove, the farm originally deeded to William Richardson. Descendants of David McMahan still own parts of the land grant. In 2009, 322 acres of the original farm, now owned by brothers Jack D. McMahan and Thomas W. "Tommy" McMahan were designated a Tennessee Century Farm.


Oct. 04, 2014 @ 02:41 PM

Adriana Zoder: This year, fall decorating called my name

On my first visit to Gatlinburg, I was impressed with the fall decorations. My friends and I took turns sitting on hay bales in front of hotels, surrounded by pumpkins and corn stalks. I am pretty sure it was the end of August, but Gatlinburg was already decorated for fall. We loved it. If you ever wonder whether tourists notice street decor and curb appeal, wonder no more. They do. It's those of us locals who see this year in and year out and may have become numb to it.


Oct. 02, 2014 @ 10:05 PM

Carl Mays: Some things aren't meant to be understood by everyone

If I could point to any one thing that is causing more and more people to think they should understand everything that anyone else says or does, I guess it would be the 24-hour news cycle available on television, radio, Internet and other accessible transmittal venues. Most all of us are aware of how things are inspected, discussed and, yes, cussed, immediately after they occur. A recent serious example is the Ferguson, Mo., episode.