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Joe & Cindy Gregory Gift Building to Birthplace of Country Music

May 23, 2014
Birthplace of Country Music, non-profit parent organization of Birthplace of Country Music Museum and Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival, is proud to announce it has acquired the former Automotive Service & Supply Company building, located at 516 Cumberland Street. The funding for the property was gifted to BCM from Joseph R. Gregory and his wife Cindy.

“I think everyone in the community is excited about the impending Birthplace of Country Music Museum opening later this year,” said Mr. Gregory. “Cindy and I are glad we could play a pivotal role in securing the adjoining building for the museum's use and see it as a strategic addition to enhance the mission of the organization. We look forward to seeing how this new space expands the presentation of our region's rich history of music and cultural heritage.”

The property was purchased from Cecil R. Hopkins, Jr., and his wife Angela. Hopkins’ father founded the business in 1935 as a United Motors Service parts franchise.

“I am happy to know the property will be restored and that the community will have a nice facility there,” said Hopkins.

According to Bristol, Virginia tax records, the two-story, 7,800 square foot structure was constructed in 1881. The application form for downtown's inclusion on the National Register of Historic Places indicates it was built circa 1900 and further reveals it was used as a grain, feed, fertilizer and cement warehouse in its early years. Later, the building housed an automobile dealership with the upper level utilized for automobile service by lifting the vehicles on a platform freight elevator that is reported to still be in working order. Hopkins confirms the building was the Bristol Motor Company Buick dealership.

“This building will play a major role in the future growth of Birthplace of Country Music," said Leah Ross, executive director. “We are fortunate to have community leaders like Joe and Cindy Gregory who support and believe in our mission."

Mr. Gregory is president and CEO of Gregory Management Company, LLC, an investment management firm located in Bristol, TN. Mr. Gregory is well known for his dedication to preservation. He purchased and began restoration of the Old Tennessee Post Office and Custom House in Bristol, in 1999. His projects have included serving on the Board of the Bristol Train Station during the period of its restoration and the preservation of the E.W. King building, located on the corner of Shelby & 7th Street. Both of these sites are designated sites on the National Register of Historic Places.

Save the Weekend! Mark Your Calendars Now! Arts & Entertainment District Planning 4th Annual State of the Arts Celebration That You Won't Want to Miss!

May 27, 2014
Once again, Bristol will be alive with the arts for a special State of the Arts Weekend on June 20–22, coordinated by the Believe in Bristol Arts & Entertainment District Steering Committee. Committee members are working with numerous venues, artists and performers to promote and plan arts activities to enjoy throughout downtown over the weekend. It's also a time to spotlight artists and venues that are doing what they do best: bringing Bristol consistently great performances and memorable artistic experiences.

"State of the Arts is always a wonderful weekend – and this year there are so many fun activities for everyone to enjoy, many of which are free to the public,” says René Rodgers, Associate Director of Believe in Bristol. “We are so proud of our Arts & Entertainment District and all it has to offer, and State of the Arts is a great way to celebrate the arts downtown!”

The State of the Arts Weekend is part of the continuing effort to keep the Bristol art scene's momentum going strong and to establish the cities as the region's premier destination for arts and entertainment.

“State of the Arts weekend was the brainchild of Jerry Goodpasture and the Arts & Entertainment Steering Committee,” says Mimi Kind, chair of the Arts & Entertainment Steering Committee and owner of One of a Kind Gallery. “Each year, it has gotten bigger and better, with more activities and ways to appreciate the variety of arts right here in downtown Bristol. You just can’t miss the great time you'll have enjoying your downtown arts destinations and special events this weekend!”

Artists, venues and performers are invited to contact Believe in Bristol to participate in the collective promotions, coordinate with others in downtown Bristol, or participate in the Committee's efforts to build on the success of last year's event.

The following is a list of confirmed activities for the State of the Arts Weekend. If you are a business owner in the downtown community and would like to publicize an arts event, or need help developing an event, please contact the Believe in Bristol office at 276-644-9700.

Friday, June 20
* Time TBC — Press conference about future arts events
* 12:00 pm — Tunes @ Noon with Rex Ward and the Mighty Wurlitzer at the Paramount Center for the Arts
* 6:00–9:00 pm — Art D'Vine, a gallery hop and wine tasting throughout Historic Downtown Bristol
* 6:00–10:30 pm — Border Bash, a summer concert series featuring JP Parsons and Jon Ladeau, along with children’s activities and food and arts & crafts vendors
*10:00 pm — Roots of the Rebellion at 620 State
* Time TBC — Electric Soulpandemic at O’Mainnin’s Pub

Saturday, June 21
*10:00 am–12 noon — State of the Arts Kids Day at the TriSummit Parking lot – This FREE event will feature a hands-on craft project, face painting, balloon animals, cookie decorating, dance movement class, and sidewalk chalk for creative expression.
Sponsored by the Junior League of Bristol, Blackbird Bakery, City of Bristol, VA, and TriSummit Bank
* 11:00 am–noon — State of the Arts POWER HOUR art competition at State Street Farmers Market – Artists from all over the area are invited to come out and complete a work of art of their choosing from start to finish in one hour. The winning artist will be featured on the Believe in Bristol website, along with our Facebook page, and also displayed in a local gallery for one month.
For more information and to register, email info@believeinbristol.org.
* 1:00–3:00 pm — Kids’ Kite DIY Suncatcher Craft at 606 State Street Gallery, registration requested by June 14 (www.606statestreetgallery.com)
* 1:00–3:00 pm — Strike a pose! Check out the ballerinas in the Bristol Ballet window.
* At dark — Special FREE screening of 2013’s “The Great Gatsby” at Cumberland Square Park, sponsored by BVU
* 10:00 pm — The Deep Fried Five at 620 State
* Time TBC — Craig Street Ramblers, Josh Wingate, and Effrin at O’Mainnin’s Pub

Sunday, June 22
*3:00–6:00 pm — Local Talent Showcase at 606 State Street Gallery, featuring Steve Gilbert, Samantha Gray, Jimi Hall, Annie Robinette, and Kat Rush

All weekend!

*Friday & Saturday 7:30 pm &Sunday 2:30 pm — Theatre Bristol’s “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat” at the Paramount Center for the Arts
* Friday & Saturday — Rising Stars Art Show at One of a Kind Gallery, plus an extra 10% off all discounted art supplies
* Friday & Saturday — At the Benjamin Walls Gallery, view the two pieces chosen by the Smithsonian for their exclusive exhibit in September, along with 30 new images created by Ben since last year’s State of the Arts weekend!
* Friday & Saturday — 20% off select items at Kil’n Time
* Friday & Saturday — 20% off all braided rugs at Cranberry Lane
* Friday & Saturday — 10% off all jewelry items at Studio 6
* Friday & Saturday — 10% off storewide at Pretty Girl Station
*Art in Public Places self-guided sculpture walk (pick up your map from various outlets downtown)
*Historic Downtown Bristol self-guided walking tour (pick up your map from various outlets downtown)

In November of 2010, the City of Bristol Virginia officially designated Downtown Bristol as an Arts & Entertainment District and charged Believe in Bristol with the oversight of this district. The district steering committee has representation from each of the arts-based businesses in Downtown Bristol and works together to boost Bristol's creative economy and cultural tourism, and collaborate to develop, encourage, and enhance ideas that cultivate Bristol's creativity. The sponsors for this year’s event are the Arts & Entertainment District of Historic Downtown Bristol, Believe in Bristol, Birthplace of Country Music, BVU, the City of Bristol, VA, the City of Bristol, TN, Junior League of Bristol, TriSummit Bank, and Blackbird Bakery.

A detailed schedule of events for the weekend will be available at believeinbristol.org. For more information, please contact Believe in Bristol at 276-644-9700 or info@believeinbristol.org.

Barter Youth Academy Summer Workshops to be held at Paramount

May 23, 2014
Join the Barter Youth Academy this summer for SUMMER MUSICAL WORKSHOPS at the Paramount! Registration is open now!

The Summer Musical Workshops run from JUNE 9th to JULY 25th, Mondays/Wednesdays (with the exception of Pre-Academy, these Workshops meet twice a week):

• Pre-Academy – Mondays only, 10 — 11am (New Students)
• Advanced Pre-Academy – Wednesdays only, 10 — 11am (Students who have completed a previous Pre-Academy Workshop)
• Elementary I – 10 — noon Disney’s Aladdin Jr.
• Elementary II – 3:30 — 5:30pm Disney’s Aladdin Jr.
• Middle School – 12:30 — 3:00 Seussical the Musical
• High School – 1:30 — 4:30 The Music Man

Demo Night is Tuesday, July 29th.

Parents: BYA is flexible for your summer plans within the 8 weeks! (Just let us know if you have to miss in advance!) Register online at www.bartertheatre.com, click on “Parents and Teachers.” Tuition is $200 per student (scholarships also available).

Want more info? Call 276.619.3344 or email youthacademy@bartertheatre.com.

Upcoming Projects Will Alter Traffic Flow In City

May 27, 2014
Milling and paving operations are scheduled to begin in the City of Bristol, Virginia, on Wednesday, May 28, commencing around 6:00 pm and continuing during the evening/nighttime hours until completion.

The affected streets include: Moore Street and Lee Street from State Street to Scott Street and Cumberland Avenue from Martin Luther King, Jr. Boulevard to Piedmont Avenue.

Residents are asked to refrain from placing items on these streets during the time the work is being performed, and to exercise caution when traveling in these areas as manhole covers and water valves will be exposed.

Updates about current street closings and active street maintenance projects can be viewed any time on the City’s website: bristolva.org.

Margaret Gregg Exhibition continues Through June in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery

May 27, 2014
The beautiful, thought provoking fiber and mixed media exhibition by artist Margaret Gregg continues in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery at the Bristol Public Library and will hang through June 28. Gregg, an Abingdon resident, has titled her exhibition “Retric,” which is the combining of the words “retro” and “eclectic,” and the exhibition brings to the Fleenor Gallery some different aspects of artistic expression.

When asked about the unique aspects of her works, Gregg says, “Over the years, I’ve worked in theatre, film and video, painting, silk screen printing, sculpture, textile constructions, mixed media, installations, layout and design. Each of these experiences opens up new areas of exploration. Sculpture, silk screen, and textile construction influenced theatre projects. Layout and design influenced film and video. Each media awakened limits that provoked me to seek help and technical support and be more inventive.”

Gregg’s exhibition has been very popular with a large number of patrons enjoying it. “I like to watch people in the Gallery ‘oh’ and ‘ah’ over the gorgeous silk quilts. Then they come to one of the mixed media works and you can see them take a step back, tilt their heads to the side, and look at the works in a whole new way, “ says patron Nancy Adams of Bristol. “I like the way it makes people think.”

As the only free public art gallery in Bristol, the Fleenor Gallery seeks to offer regional artists a venue to display their works. This is in keeping with the Bristol Public Library’s mission of “Expanding Minds, Building Community.”

Downtown Bristol Blog

Tall Tales and Fantastic Fables with the Beaver Creek Storytellers at 36 Moore Street

June 03, 2014
The Beaver Creek Storytellers will perform Stories, Poetry and Music at the Believe in Bristol headquarters at 36 Moore Street, Bristol, VA, on Tuesday, June 3, 7 — 9pm. The public is invited for this evening of wonderful entertainment! The Beaver Creek Storytellers present family-oriented programs suitable for all ages and the general public is invited to attend the monthly presentations (the first Tuesday of each month). Our purpose is to promote and preserve storytelling in Bristol and surrounding areas. Admission is $5.

Acclaimed Author and Poet Rita Quillen to have Book Event at the Bristol Public Library

June 01, 2014
Acclaimed Appalachian poet and author Rita Quillen will have a book talk and signing at the Bristol Public Library on Sunday, June 1. Ms. Quillen will speak about her new novel Hiding Ezra and read some of her poetry at 2:30 PM in the J. Henry Kegley Meeting Room. The event will continue until 4:30 PM with a book signing. There will be copies of Quillen’s poetry books and Hiding Ezra for sale.
Click here to read more.

Bristol Dance Academy annual dance recital at the Paramount

May 31, 2014
Bristol Dance Academy will have its annual Dance Recital Saturday, May 31. The event will be held at the Paramount Center for the Arts on State Street in Bristol, TN.The performance will start at 6 pm. Tickets can be purchased at the door. Come out and enjoy a wonderful show. For more information, call 423-646-8048.

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot


Photo courtesy of Randy Smith
May 30, 2014
Come downtown and enjoy the Antique Automobile Club of America – Appalachian Region Car Show on Friday, May 30! This car cruise-in is held every Friday night, end of April through October, 6 — 8pm in the TriSummit bank parking lot across from the Bristol Train Station in downtown Bristol. It's always a fun night — full of classic cars!

Support your local small businesses with Sunset Shopping Downtown!

May 29, 2014
As the weather continues to get warmer and brighter, remember to come out for Sunset Shopping in Downtown Bristol! We'll be here again this Thursday, May 29 until 8pm — and every Thursday night for the next six months! So go ahead and mark your calendars and make your plans — it's the perfect way to have a great night out and support your local businesses! For more information, please visit www.believeinbristol.org or contact Believe in Bristol at 276-644-9700, info@believeinbristol.org.

blowfish emporium painting party — Piano

May 29, 2014
Come on out to blowfish emporium's regular Tuesday & Thursday night painting parties! The next Thursday painting party is Thursday, May 29 from 6 to 8:30pm. Be assured, this is NOT a painting class! It is very relaxed & informal. The point is to have fun & allow yourself the option to get as creative as you want. NO SKILL IS REQUIRED, really! The cost is $32 per person (includes EVERYTHING — canvas, paint, tools & instruction — you just show up!). For more information contact blowfish emporium on 276-644-1428 or info@blowfishemporium.com.
Click here to read more.

Mad Hatter Salon offering Pedicure Specials!

May 28, 2014
The Mad Hatter Salon welcomes you to come in a for a Pedicure before you throw on those flip flops for the summer!! We offer a Basic Pedi for $25 and Spa Pedi for $35 and for the month of May add on a Mani for only $15!! Pedicures include nail and cuticle maintenance, scrub and dead skin removal, and moisturizing foot and leg massage. Top it off with a beautiful color from our large selection of OPI Nail Polish! Call for your appointment today (ask for Charity or Chelsea) — 276-466-1010.

Save with Memorial Day Savings all week long at Bristol Office Supply

May 28, 2014
Bristol Office Supply is offering Memorial Day Savings — all week long! Check out their website for more information:http://tinyurl.com/mj4wz6d

20% off everything now through Father's Day at Pointer Brand

May 28, 2014
Pointer Brand is helping you make Father's Day EXTRA SPECIAL! They are offering 20% off everything, now through Father's Day! Go to their website athttps://www.pointerbrand.com/ and use code "4Dad" to get the perfect gift for your dad.

Upcoming Events

Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery at the Bristol Public Library Features "Retric" Showing by Fiber and Mixed Media Artist Margaret Gregg

May 02 - June 28, 2014

Guido Au'Some & the Open Mic Players at O'Mainnin's Pub

May 27, 2014

blowfish emporium painting party — Funky Trees

May 27, 2014

Northeast State hosting "Grow Your Business" Workshops featuring a downtown business owner on their Blountville campus

May 27, 2014

Humpday Party with Last Call at O'Mainnin's Pub

May 28, 2014

blowfish emporium painting party — Piano

May 29, 2014

Full Moon Jam: James Meadows

May 29, 2014

Laura Thurston at O'Mainnin's Pub

May 29, 2014

The Secret B-Sides at 620 State

May 30, 2014

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot

May 30, 2014

Letters to Abigail at Machiavelli's

May 30, 2014

Time Sawyer at O'Mainnin's Pub

May 30, 2014

Bristol Dance Academy annual dance recital at the Paramount

May 31, 2014

Steve Gilbert, Scratch River Telegraph Co. and Farmhouse Ghost at O'Mainnin's Pub

May 31, 2014

Acclaimed Author and Poet Rita Quillen to have Book Event at the Bristol Public Library

June 01, 2014

Margaret Gregg Exhibition continues Through June in the Virgie R. Fleenor Art Gallery

June 01, 2014

Sunday Funday with DJ B-Digital at O'Mainnin's Pub

June 01, 2014

The Gospel Two at the Pickin' Porch at the Foundation Event Facility

June 02, 2014

Open Jam with master blues guitarist Adam Graybeal at O'Mainnin's Pub

June 02, 2014

Full Moon Jam: Duty Free

June 03, 2014

Guido Au'Some & the Open Mic Players at O'Mainnin's Pub

June 03, 2014

Tall Tales and Fantastic Fables with the Beaver Creek Storytellers at 36 Moore Street

June 03, 2014

Full Moon Jam: Retroville

June 05, 2014

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot

June 06, 2014

Ryan Ward at O'Mainnin's

June 06, 2014

The Jaystorm Project at O'Mainnin's Pub

June 06, 2014

Border Bash in Historic Downtown Bristol

June 06, 2014

Bombadil at O'Mainnin's Pub

June 07, 2014

Barter Youth Academy Summer Workshops to be held at Paramount

June 09 - July 25, 2014

Apple iPhone/iPad Workshop at the Bristol Chamber of Commerce

June 10, 2014

The State Street Project: Health Across the Borders event at the Foundation Event Facility

June 12, 2014

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot

June 13, 2014

ArtSmart Classes now being held at Bristol Public Library

June 14, 2014

Fourth Annual State of the Arts Weekend in Historic Downtown Bristol

June 20 - 22, 2014

Border Bash in Historic Downtown Bristol

June 20, 2014

Art D'Vine in Historic Downtown Bristol

June 20, 2014

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot

June 20, 2014

Who Art You? Summer Art Camp in Historic Downtown Bristol

June 23 - 27, 2014

Northeast State hosting "Grow Your Business" Workshop featuring Karen Hester on their Blountville campus

June 24, 2014

AACA car show at TriSummit Bank Parking Lot

June 27, 2014

BVU's Music & Movies in the Park: Shooter and Man of Steel

July 03, 2014

Border Bash — and 4th of July Celebration — in Cumberland Square Park

July 04, 2014

More Upcoming Events »