Mountain Life

Jan. 11, 2014 @ 11:49 PM

Adriana Zoder: Wilderness Wildlife Week a free, annual tradition

For the third year in a row, we will take our children to the Wilderness Wildlife Week, a free, annual event in Pigeon Forge. Besides the new programs featured, it will be exciting to explore its new location. LeConte Center at Pigeon Forge looks pretty impressive from the outside.


Jan. 11, 2014 @ 11:48 PM

Jake Old: A rough night for a power trio

During my not-quite-so celebrated stint as a struggling musician in Middle Tennessee, I had some strange experiences with strange individuals. Notably, the homeless man whose entire body, from head to toe, was painted blue for no discernible reason as he walked the streets of downtown Nashville with his guitar, harassing people with his slight musical abilities and his far greater skill, begging for cigarettes.


Jan. 17, 2014 @ 07:53 AM

Upland Chronicles: Eunice Eledge left her mark at Dollywood

When Rebel Railroad opened in 1961, the two brothers from North Carolina who developed and owned the attraction could have not imagined it would one day be among the most visited amusement parks in the world. Neither did Eunice Eledge when she started working there in 1970. She was hired by John Fox to serve as his office manager when Art Modell, owner of the Cleveland Browns, purchased the attraction and changed the name to Goldrush Junction.


Jan. 09, 2014 @ 11:50 PM

Carl Mays: “Good Riddance Day” is a good idea

In the celebration and observance of Christmas followed by the flurry of activities that paced the entry into 2014, you may have missed Good Riddance Day. I did. Just yesterday I got around to seeing something about it. I really can’t remember if I’ve noticed it in years past, but I do know now that the Seventh Annual Good Riddance Day was observed in New York City on Dec. 28.


Jan. 02, 2014 @ 11:14 PM

Carl Mays: Let’s take a closer look at goal setting in 2014

According to a report in a December 2013 issue of University of Scranton’s Journal of Clinical Psychology, 45 percent of Americans “usually” make New Year’s resolutions, 17 percent “infrequently” make resolutions, 38 percent “absolutely never” make resolutions. Eight percent are “usually successful” reaching resolutions, 49 percent have “infrequent success” reaching resolutions and  24 percent “never succeed” reaching resolutions.


Dec. 28, 2013 @ 11:54 PM

Adriana Zoder: New year's resolutions don't work, so why make them?

Scientific fact: new year's resolutions do not work. They fizzle out by April, to be precise. So why make them? Instead, please allow me to mention a couple of books that will set you off on a path to productivity and goal-achieving bliss, not only in business, but in your personal life, as well.


Dec. 28, 2013 @ 11:10 PM

Upland Chronicles: A tribute to Winfred Ownby

I met Winfred Ownby for the first time on Jan. 12, 2008. He walked up to me after the conclusion of a program I presented about Uncle Lem Ownby at Wilderness Wildlife Week in Pigeon Forge. He was clad in bibbed overalls and walking with a cane. I was startled, at first glance, at his remarkable resemblance to Lem Ownby, who had passed on 25 years earlier.


Dec. 26, 2013 @ 11:14 PM

Carl Mays: Are you ready for Christmas – in January?

Back in the 1970s, Miss Maggie, an elderly lady of the mountains, talked about Old Christmas. According to her, many mountain people celebrated Christmas in January. “My grandfather always celebrated Christmas on Jan. 6,” she said. “He refused to acknowledge Dec. 25 as the real Christmas, claiming it was man-made.” She said that Old Christmas was much more subdued than is our modern holiday. It was a quiet, reflective time, celebrated with prayer and soft, a cappella singing.


Dec. 21, 2013 @ 11:30 PM

Jake Old: My all-time favorite gift for Christmas

This Christmas will mark the four-year anniversary of the greatest Christmas gift I ever received. And that part cannot be stressed enough: my greatest gift. Maybe not yours.


Dec. 21, 2013 @ 11:29 PM

Upland Chronicles: Sevier County Christmas traditions have changed with the times

Every region, community and family has its own time-honored Christmas traditions. Baking old-fashioned stack cake and chopping down a cedar tree in the woods are memories shared by many older Sevier County residents. There are those still living who can recall the Christmas mornings of their youth when receiving nothing more than a stocking filled with candy and fruit was all they expected as a Christmas gift.


Dec. 14, 2013 @ 11:58 PM

Jeff Farrell: ‘Affluenza’ defense more likely to fail than succeed

The sad case in Texas of a teenager who took four lives while driving drunk is shining a light on “affluenza,” a concept that doesn’t seem to have much scientific support but is now, at least briefly, in the public eye.


Dec. 14, 2013 @ 11:04 PM

Upland Chronicles: Editor Bill Montgomery left legacy in newspaper publishing

Since Preston Love established The Sevierville Enterprise, in 1882, numerous publications have provided the news in print form to county residents. Arguably, none of them left as memorable impression as Montgomery’s Vindicator, founded and published by William R. “Bill” Montgomery.


Dec. 14, 2013 @ 11:01 PM

Adriana Zoder: Sevier County stores offer great Christmas shopping options

On Nov. 28, I was looking all over the Internet for an Advent calendar. Somebody mentioned a bargain price, like $10 on Amazon, so I was motivated.


Dec. 14, 2013 @ 11:00 PM

Michael Collins: Nothing overshadowed Pop’s love for his kids

As far as parents go, I had a pretty good set. Always the provider, Pop made certain we had what we needed so Mom could stay home and take care of us kids.


Dec. 07, 2013 @ 11:25 PM

Kenneth Burns: Bull market likely not a return to Internet mania

Like a lot of regular people, I have some money in the stock market. We’re not talking Daddy Warbucks wealth, but I’ve invested enough that I pay attention to the market reports.


Dec. 07, 2013 @ 11:14 PM

Upland Chronicles: Joel Whaley left his mark in the Smokies

Throughout the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, evidence of houses and farms can be found. One of the most heavily populated areas was the Sugarlands community. In addition to private residences, the community contained churches, schools, and stores.


Dec. 05, 2013 @ 11:56 PM

Carl Mays: Teach your own brand of motivation, persistence

This past summer I read an article in The Atlantic magazine titled “Motivation Matters More Than Ever.” Just recently I picked up a new book titled “The Smartest Kids in the World – And How They Got That Way.”


Dec. 05, 2013 @ 11:05 PM

Family dysfunction rules in Walters State’s ‘The House of Yes’

In his review of the film version, Roger Ebert wrote that “The House of Yes” exists somewhere between “The Addams Family” and “A Long Day’s Journey Into Night.”


Nov. 30, 2013 @ 11:25 PM

Adriana Zoder: Science classes at Ripley’s Aquarium are impressive

Have you ever gone through Ripley’s Aquarium of the Smokies and wondered what those private classes offered were all about? I will explain. Please read on.


Nov. 30, 2013 @ 11:24 PM

Jake Old: Give me Christmas without all that fluff

It’s that time of year again. Thanksgiving is over, and we are moving into the Christmas stretch. Actually, it seems like most businesses begin to promote Christmas-related products and events in August, but I try to ignore that because I think we all know it’s a bit ridiculous to see a cardboard cutout of reindeer flying through snow while it’s 80 degrees outside.


Nov. 30, 2013 @ 11:23 PM

Upland Chronicles: Architect West Barber loved the Smokies

About a month before his 85th birthday, tragedy struck West Barber. On Dec. 4, 1974, he was working in the shop of his home in Knoxville making Christmas presents. A piece of wood spun from his lathe and buzzed at his unprotected good eye. He’d lost the sight in his other eye as a result of a detached retina a few years earlier.


Nov. 23, 2013 @ 11:26 PM

Upland Chronicles: Death of a vision and innocence lost

President John F. Kennedy was three years deep into his presidency by November 1963. He symbolized an optimistic future for those of us who graduated college in June 1960. He characterized what many of us envisioned as good for our future and America.


Nov. 24, 2013 @ 10:02 AM

Hologram ghosts are a highlight of "Dollywood's A Christmas Carol"

If you want to get a big dose of Dolly Parton the next time you visit Dollywood, you have opportunities. You can visit her museum, Chasing Rainbows. You can watch her filmed performances in the shows "My People" and "Heartsong."


Nov. 22, 2013 @ 07:15 AM

In his new book, Oliver North chronicles the toll of war

Parts of Oliver North’s new book are tough going.


Nov. 21, 2013 @ 11:06 PM

Carl Mays: Everyone must execute the plan

“We had a good game plan, but we just failed to execute.” Sports coaches have uttered these words many times. What they are saying is, “On paper, the strategy or blueprint we designed in order to win the game was solid and workable, but we just didn’t do what we intended to do.”