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Cumberland to Become Slippery Slope

August 12, 2014
On August 30, traffic patterns in a portion of the City of Bristol, Virginia, will be dramatically altered. For three city blocks, from the top near Solar Street, to the bottom across Piedmont Avenue, the only way to navigate that section of town will be by slip sliding your way down on tubes and rafts, as Cumberplunge 2014 transforms the streets into a giant water slide.

Organized by Quaker Steak & Lube, this event is geared to be as much fun for spectators, as for sliders.

“We embrace any event that builds upon the excitement and synergy we have going on downtown,” said JJ Gillenwater, co-owner of the Bristol eatery. “This idea is just over the top, and we can’t wait to present this slippery parade,” he added.

To add to the spectacle, participants are encouraged to dress in costumes and outlandish attire.

“Although not a requirement, we hope people will consider themselves as a parade float in a really steep and fast parade,” said Gillenwater. “Participants can just slide their way through Bristol, but we hope to see unique and eye-catching characters plunging down the 500-foot, 12-degree grade,” he added.

“We expect demand to be high for this first-time event, but only 400 lucky entrants will get a “Golden Ticket” to slide,” said Gillenwater.

Of the 400 participants, 300 will be selected by a random draw, with a committee choosing the last 100 applications based on creativity and crowd appeal. It will be an elite group,” he added.

Viewing areas will be established all along the slide route, so those who would rather stay dry can watch from the sidelines.

“To further encourage creativity, we are considering judging in several categories to increase the competition,” Gillenwater said.

“Cumberplunge 2014 is going to be a day of pure fun, just for the sake of fun,” said Bristol, Virginia, Mayor Catherine Brillhart. “It will be a time to celebrate the residents of our city, and bond further as a community,” she added.

According to Brillhart, the visitor traffic generated by this event could be significant for both Bristols.

“When our sister city, Bristol, England, hosted a similar event this past May, nearly 100,000 applicants vied for only 360 tickets to ride the slide. Brillhart added that 60,000 showed up merely to watch.

Brillhart added that the Bristol, Virginia event will be double the fun, with two tracks allowing for side-by-side racing.

“We appreciate Quaker Steak & Lube taking the lead on this event, and think that it will certainly provide yet another reason for visitors to be excited about coming to Bristol,” she added.

Participants must be 12 years of age or older to take the plunge, and anyone under the age of 16 must have signed parental or guardian consent to slide. Rules and regulations, as well as applications, will be available on the City of Bristol website,, by the end of the week.

Cumberplunge 2014 will be held from 12pm until 4 pm. The event is free and open to the public. The festivities will continue with food, games, fun for all ages and live music downtown until midnight at Quaker Steak & Lube.

Food City Family Race Night Volunteers Needed

August 08, 2014
The Birthplace of Country Music is looking volunteers to help out during Food City Family Race Night!This year the generous folks at Food City are donating proceeds from Food City Race night to The Birthplace of Country Music Museum — but we need your help! BCM is looking for 120 volunteers to work the event. Food City Race Night takes place on State Street, Thursday, August 21, 2014, from 1:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. All you have to do is sign up!

Fill out an entry form and drop it by the BCM office at 416 State Street, Suite A, Bristol, TN any time during office hours 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Or fax to 423-573-4877.

Click here to download the application:

2014 — 2015 Season of the Buechner Institute Kicks off at The Bristol Public Library

August 11, 2014
The Buechner program for 2014–2015 will try to address this superbly honed, unadorned question. Our speakers and performers will come at the question via sentence and solace, edifi cation and entertainment.The tension between hope and fear is, of course, at the heart of Frederick Buechner’s writings. In his powerful and overlooked novel, On the Road with the Archangel, for example, he features a cast of characters surprisingly familiar in these days of anxiety and uncertainty. They wonder if there is a God “who looked after the world after all.” Buechner’s narrator, an angel of all things, concludes “by and large the world believes in him [the Holy One] for all the wrong reasons.” And “it disbelieves in him for all the wrong reasons too.” There it is, that hard place between faith and doubt, between joyful anticipation and dreary dread, the territory we need help to navigate.Such is the tension that sends us to the couchbewildered and bone tired. Perhaps, among the words of our speakers and the songs of our singers, we can find encouragement to face what’s next with confidence. Get off the couch. Join the party.

Dale Brown, Director, The Buechner Institute

Premier Loft Available in Historic Downtown Bristol

August 11, 2014
One of Bristol’s downtown premier lofts for lease — $1975.00 per month includes utilities and private parking space. Loft has 2 bedrooms, 2 baths. Gourmet kitchen with granite and Jenn-Air appliances. Gas stove. Beautiful suspended second floor with master bedroom overlooking State Street. Secured entrance from rear foyer.509 State Street, Loft 2, Bristol • Bristol, VA 24201

Contact Information: Randall Vaught @ 423.383.5081 or

Shelbee's Vintage Cafe Ribbon Cutting

August 12, 2014
We are proud to welcome the new owners of Shelbee's Vintage Cafe to downtown!

Shelbee’s Vintage Café is centrally located on Historical State Street in Bristol, TN between the Paramount Theatre and Birthplace of Country Music Headquarters. Their creative and talented staff, led by new owners Patrick and Renee MacNeil, use the freshest local ingredients to create wonderful dishes for breakfast and lunch!

Breakfast is served from 7:30am — 10:30am and lunch is served from 11:00am — 3:00pm.

(423) 652-1000

Myles Savage & The Platters, The Drifters, The Coasters and The Temptations

August 12, 2014
Back by popular demand,Friday, September 5, 2014 at 7:30pm!

Myles Savage, Lead Singer of The Platters with THE PLATTERS, COASTERS, DRIFTERS, andTEMPTATIONS.For the past few years the SAHARA HOTEL AND CASINO in Las Vegas has been the home of "America's Musical Gift to the World", The Platters, Cornell Gunter's Coasters and Beary Hobb's Drifters.Audiences screamed, shouted, and sang along with us every night to hits like "Only You", "Under the Boardwalk", "Charlie Brown", "My Girl", "Shout" and many others. Myles decided to take the show a step further by creating his own version of their Las Vegas engagement.Currently on their "Farewell Tour", the fans are loving every minute of it. Hits like "The GreatPretender", "Charlie Brown", "Poison Ivy", "My Girl", "Get Ready", "Up On The Roof" and many, manymore are having a fantastic resurgence of popularity all across America and around the world. It's allhappening because of the music, the memories and THE STARS who are taking the 50's and 60's tothe people who love it most.

Tickets are $35, get them now!

Tickets are available at


Final Border Bash of the Year!

August 12, 2014
Set in Historic Downtown Bristol; Border Bash will have the final “BASH” of the year this Friday August 15, 2014. Border Bash will conclude in the 400 & 500 blocks of State Street and events will start with children’s activities, crafters, and concessions at 6PM. Live music begins at 7:00PM with Leo Rondeau followed up by The Deslondes around 8:30PM. As always, Border Bash is free to the public!
“We are sad this is the final Bash of the year but are looking forward to having all the bands that played Border Bash this summer back here for the 14th Annual Bristol Rhythm and Roots Reunion in September. Organizers truly appreciate all the support given from our sponsors and the cities of Bristol; we know we could not have had Border Bash without you! It has truly been a year full of great music, fun vendors, and most importantly community spirit, “says Christina Blevins, executive director of Believe in Bristol.

Leo Rondeau: Originally from the Turtle Mountains in North Dakota, Leo Rondeau now calls Austin, Texas, his home. His songs describe appealing characters in both mundane and extraordinary situations. This storytelling, enhanced by appealing melodies, earned him a Songwriter of the Year nomination from the Academy of Texas Music for his previous record “Down at the End of the Bar.” For more information on Leo Rondeau, please visit

The Deslondes: The Deslondes (formerly Tumbleweeds) are a New Orleans-based country-soul, R&B, folk and gospel-influenced band. Band leader Sam Doores left his home as a teenager to wander and seek out like-minded musicians. Along the way, he met Cameron Snyder and they embarked on a road trip to the Woody Guthrie Folk Festival as Broken Wing Routine, their outfit at the time. It was there that they first met Missouri native Riley Downing, trading tunes around a campfire. This combination of strong musical skills brings harmonious sounds to everyone who sees them perform. For more information on The Deslondes, please visit
Border Bash is hosted by Believe in Bristol, Birthplace of Country Music® and the Cities of Bristol. Border Bash would not be possible without our community support. Our sponsors in 2014 include Along Come Mary Interior Design – Mary Jane Miller, Alpha Natural Resources, Ann & John Tickle, Bank of Tennessee, Benjamin Walls Gallery, Blackbird Bakery, Blakley Mitchell Co., Brenda & John Fincher, Bristol Herald Courier, Bristol Virginia Utilities, Campbell Printing, Celebrate Bristol, Coca-Cola, Commonwealth Coal Corp., Cranberry Lane, Dent K. Burk CPA Firm, Doug & Amy Williams, Dr. and Ms. Bennett Cowan, Jr., Edward Jones Investments – Robert Hollo, Rob Simis, Brad Baker and Greg Fahn, Electric 94.9 FM, Express AV Productions, First Bank of Virginia, First Tennessee Foundation, Joe & Pam Kerr – Kerr Boswell Inc., Kil’n Time, Mary Landrum, Merrill-Lynch, Renasant Bank, Revolution Curbside Recycling, Sarah Hull – Serendipity, Spiegler Blevins & Company CPAs, State Line Bar & Grille, Strongwell, The Homer A. and Ida S. Jones Trust, The Williams Company, Tom & Barbara Smith, Tri-City Tent & Event, Walling Distributing, WCYB News 5, Wells Fargo Foundation, WXBQ 96.6 FM and Z-Rock 99.3.

Sculptures Placed for the 2014-15 Art in Public Places Outdoor Sculpture Exhibit in Downtown Bristol

August 12, 2014
Sculptors from around the US visited downtown Bristol, TN and VA, on August 4, 2014, to install the winning sculptures in Art in Public Places' 2014-15 Outdoor Sculpture Competition.

Art in Public Places has hosted the Outdoor Sculpture Competition since 2005. Four new sculptures have been selected to appear in the ninth annual exhibition.

“Corps de Ballet” by Michael Bednar of Charlottesville, VA, located at WCYB Plaza.
“Hummingbird” by Dalia Delanuez of Greenville, SC, located at Bristol Tennessee Courthouse.
“Indian Summer” by Cathy Perry of Chocowinity, NC, located at Anderson Park.
“Tractor Fin” by Kurt Dyrhaug of Beaumont, TX, located at Anderson Park.

The winning pieces were selected by 2014 juror Steven Matijcio from a pool of eighty-eighty entries by forty-one artists.

Matijcio is the curator of the Contemporary Arts Center in Cincinnati, Ohio. Prior to this position he served as Curator of Contemporary Art at the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art (SECCA) in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, from 2008-2013. Matijcio is a graduate of the Center for Curatorial Studies at Bard College, New York, and has held positions in a number of important galleries and museums, including the Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art (Winnipeg, Canada), the Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery (Toronto, Canada), the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the National Gallery of Canada.

Matijcio was honored in 2010 with a prestigious Emily Hall Tremaine Exhibition Award for his expansive project “paperless.” In the summer of 2011 he was chosen from an international pool of candidates to participate in curatorial residencies in Gwangju, South Korea (as part of the Gwangju Design Biennale) and Berlin, Germany (as part of the Haus der Kulturen der Welt’s “Synapse” project exploring the relationship between art & science). In the fall of 2012 he curated the 4th edition of the Narracje Festival in Gdansk, Poland, which involved a city-wide program of installations, interventions and video projections upon the surfaces of historic buildings. Matijcio’s 2013 essay “Nothing to See Here: The Denial of Vision in Media Art” was recently accepted into the RENEW: Media Art Histories Conference in Riga, Latvia.

Matijcio has also lectured on theory and criticism at the University of Manitoba, written for numerous catalogues and journals (including the Guide to the 27th Sao Paulo Bienal), and was commissioned in 2003 by the Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation to curate one of their first online exhibitions. He remains active as a curator, writer, professor, and researcher.

Art in Public Places is a community art project organized and implemented by the Art in Public Places Board with the cooperation of the Bristol, Tennessee, and Bristol, Virginia, city governments. Art in Public Places installs art in public spaces in Bristol for the enjoyment and enrichment of the community. Artists’ submissions are solicited from throughout the nation, and entries are judged by an expert juror, who is selected by the Art in Public Places Board.

The Art in Public Places project is funded by donations from area businesses and individuals. To make a contribution, visit the Art in Public Places website at, or mail your donation to AiPP, PO Box 1502, Bristol VA 24203.

Join the story at The Birthplace of Country Music Museum

August 08, 2014
Join the Birthplace of Country Music Museum's story by loaning photographs, paper documents, or small objects that show how you are involved in your local community! Whether it's documents from your grandmother's ladies' auxiliary group, photographs of you and your friends at Border Bash this summer, or photos and documentation of the old family homestead, we'd love to display part of your story in our case spotlighting community life. Loan periods will range from 6 months to 1 year, and not all items can be displayed immediately. Contact David Lewis, our Curator of Collections, to discuss a possible loan! His email address is

One Year Anniversary of Pointer Brand's Big Write Up

August 08, 2014
L.C. King Manufacturing is celebrating the one year anniversary of its first write-up by a Big City Newspaper. The factory is proudly continuing the original manufacturing techniques that made L.C. King its name. In honor of Cathy Horn's article everything on is 14% off with the use of the promo code 'cathy.'

Downtown Bristol Blog

Pickin' Porch with The MayRay Bros.

August 18, 2014
The Pickin Porch Show will feature The MayRay Bros on Monday, August 18th at 7pm. The Pickin Porch is located at The Foundation Event Facility.

Support your local small businesses with Sunset Shopping Downtown!

August 14, 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, August 14 until 8pm! 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 or contact Believe in Bristol at 276-644-9700,

Health Education Series 2014 August Presentation

August 14, 2014
August 14, 2014 at 6:30 PM in the J. Henry Kegley Meeting Room of the Bristol Public Library Dr. Diana Heiman talks about "Head Injuries and Traumatic Brain Injury in Sports".Every year there are an estimated 1.6 to 3.8 million traumatic brain injuries related to sports. Most of these injuries occur in younger children and teens. Do you have children or grandchildren involved in cycling, soccer, football, baseball, basketball, snowboarding, skiing, or another sport? Are you a coach? Someone interested in the newest information on this critical public health issue? Then you need to attend the August presentation of the Health Education Series: 2014.

Full Moon Jam — The Eliminator Band

August 14, 2014
Tribute Band, The Eliminator Band -The Eliminator Band is the original ZZ Top Tribute Band. The Eliminator band played their first show on December 4, 1992 and haven’t stopped since! First Time in Tri-Cities. They will be playing Thursday, August 14 at 7:00pm.
Click here to read more.

Full Moon Jam — Appalachian Trail at Downtown Center

August 12, 2014
The Downtown Center hosts the Full Moon Jam concert series each year beginning in May and going through the end of September. Concerts begin at 7:00 PM nightly. Appalachian Trail Appalachian Trail is a real deal bluegrass band! Don't miss out! They will be playing Tuesday, August 19 at 7:00PM

State Street Farmers Market

August 12, 2014
State Street Farmers Market was opened in 1999 with the support of 4 different governmental agencies: the City of Bristol Tennessee, the City of Bristol Virginia, Sullivan County Tennessee and Washington County Virginia. The market is open on Saturdays from May through October each year. Additionally, the market opens mid-week on Wednesdays July through September. The market is located at the Downtown Center, 810 State Street. The market's operations are overseen by the Parks and Recreation Department. There is a Market Supervisor on sight each time the market is open to answer any questions the public may have or to assist vendors participating in the market. Learn about our Farmer's Market Board. Be sure to come out this Saturday for Tomato Fest!

Upcoming Events

Full Moon Jam — The Eliminator Band at Downtown Center

August 14, 2014

Bike Night at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 14, 2014

Sun-Dried Vibes at O'Mainnin's

August 15, 2014

Border Bash in Historic Downtown Bristol — Leo Rondeau and The Deslondes

August 15, 2014

Bret Mosely at 620 State

August 15, 2014

Matt Counts at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 15, 2014

The Catfish Frye Band at Quaker Steak &

August 16, 2014

CityChurch Bristol Hosts Free Concert

August 17, 2014

Open Jam at O'Mainnin's Pub

August 18, 2014

Pickin' Porch with The MayRay Bros.

August 18, 2014

Food City Family Race Night

August 21, 2014

Plan Z playing at O'Mainnin's Pub & Grille

August 21, 2014

Annie Robinette at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 22, 2014

Chris Smith at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 23, 2014

10th Annual Watauga Lake Triathlon

August 23, 2014

Pickin' Porch with Fiddlin' Carson Peters Band

August 25, 2014

Open Jam at O'Mainnin's Pub

August 25, 2014

Full Moon Jam — Catfish Frye Band at Downtown Center

August 28, 2014

Mark Larkins at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 29, 2014

Farmhouse Ghost at Quaker Steak & Lube

August 30, 2014

M Cochran at O'Mainnin's Pub

September 04, 2014

Full Moon Jam — Billy Crawford at the Downtown Center

September 04, 2014

Pickin Porch with Boots on the Ground

September 08, 2014

Paramount hosting fundraiser "Puttin' on the Ritz...60s Style"

September 12, 2014

Art D'Vine in Historic Downtown Bristol

September 12, 2014

Annie Robinette at Quaker Steak & Lube

September 27, 2014

More Upcoming Events »