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Downtown Bristol Blog

PUSH! Film Festival Official Poster Created by King University's Digital Media Art & Design Department

King University’s Digital Media Art & Design Department has teamed up once again with Believe in Bristol and the PUSH! Film Festival to create the official poster for the event. The festival takes place Historic Downtown Bristol TN/VA Oct. 20-22. 3 Days. 2 States. 1 Film Festival.

“We are excited to be a part of the PUSH! Film Festival again this year. King has been a part of the festival since its inception,” said Joe Strickland, assistant professor of Photography and Digital Media. “This will be our third year to collaborate with the festival’s marketing team to create the official poster for the event. The festival poster is created by King’s Sign of the George Press & Gallery. The old-fashioned letterpress is managed by the DMAD program. For the last two years, a focus for the posters has been to highlight the uniqueness of the festival — 3 days, 2 states, 1 film festival.”

Lee Jones, assistant professor of Photography and Digital Media added, “This year, we will incorporate into the design the state markers of Tennessee/Virginia that line the middle of State Street. We had a new block specially made for this poster to incorporate the dual states. The block was created by Owosso Graphic Arts in Owosso, Mich., one of the few remaining companies who still make blocks for letterpresses. The black ink posters as well as limited special edition two-color design posters will be available for sale during the festival.”

“Believe in Bristol and PUSH! Film Festival are very lucky to have a great partnership with the King University DMAD program,” said Maggie Bishop, executive director of Believe in Bristol. “Our festival posters are each pressed in The Sign of the George Press; we use DMAD students as volunteers for the festival, both prior to and during festival weekend; and have been able to create amazing festival wayfinding through the department. The ability to use these DMAD resources has been crucial to the success of our now third year film festival. “

“Two years ago, King alumna, Tessa Klingensmith (’16), had a film accepted and screened during the festival,” said Strickland. “Bristol can be a great place for not only a film festival but for filmmakers. Just like the movie ‘Believe’ recognized Bristol was a great location for a film, we are wanting to see what filmmakers would think about doing more film and bringing more into our community here with the medium of film specifically. The filmmakers PUSH! has entertained over the past couple of years have seen the potential for Bristol.”

“Members of the local arts community started the festival three years ago,” said Jones. “There has been a lot of art and music downtown, but not much film. We have the Paramount Theatre, which is quite famous, and essentially, we wanted to bring film back to Downtown Bristol.”

The PUSH! Film Festival is a competitive, three-day festival and celebration of the cinematic and visual arts. By bringing diverse films to our community and showcasing the best regional filmmakers, PUSH! aims to expand the artistic image of our region, engage new audiences in the world of film, and inspire creativity. Some of the competition film categories include Best Tennessee Film and Best Virginia Film as well as Best Shorts and Best Feature for local, national, and international audiences. The audiences also have an opportunity to vote for their favorite film submission.

PUSH! will also offer exciting parties and get-togethers, along with a variety of educational opportunities for filmmakers and audience members of all ages. Films and workshops will be held across several venues including the historic, art-deco Paramount Theatre, the Bristol Public Library, and the Smithsonian-affiliated Birthplace of Country Music Museum.

Bristol TN introduces new map-based survey tool in conjunction with Comprehensive Plan

The City of Bristol Tennessee recently made available a new online map-based survey tool to engage and involve the community in providing input for the ongoing Comprehensive Plan.

Public participation is a vital component of the Comprehensive Plan process. “The city would like to have members of the community share their thoughts and ideas about planning what Bristol should become over the next 15, 20, or 30 years,” said Brian Rose, Director of Community Development. “The tool is fun to use and very intuitive. Just click the link, register, and then start creating your own map,” Rose continued. “Once you have completed the survey you can see what others have done as well.”

The map tool is now available online for citizens to provide information quickly and from the convenience of their own home or office. To access the map-based survey, visit

For more information about the new map-survey, contact Brian Rose at or call 423-989-5600 Ext. 2129.

Downtown Bristol Events

Hiring Expo

September 21 | Bristol Motor Speedway

The City of Bristol, Tennessee is hosting its second Bristol Hiring Expo on September 21st to once again help local employers connect with job-seekers throughout the region. Officials chose to hold this event again due to the success of the previous Hiring Expos and in response to continued economic growth and expansion.

Exhibit space is available to any Bristol, Tennessee employers who wish to participate, and there is absolutely no cost for employers or job-seekers to attend. Registration includes an 8-foot table, WiFi access, use of private interview rooms, a business center, and lunch for representatives in attendance.

The Bristol Hiring Expo will take place on September 21, 2017 from 10:00 AM until 6:00 PM at the Bristol Motor Speedway South Building (formerly Peerless Woodworking). Registration for the Hiring Expo is open to employers located in Bristol, Tennessee seeking to fill full-time, part-time, temporary, and seasonal positions. The deadline for employer registration is September 15, 2017, and can be completed online at or by phone at 423-764-4171.

Full Moon Jam: Nightrain Guns n Roses Tribute Band

September 21 | Downtown Center

Nightrain, The Ultimate Guns n Roses Tribute Experience pays tribute to one of the most iconic rock bands in history: Guns N’ Roses. This tribute act will give you a night of high energy music that never lets up.


The City of Bristol Tennessee will host its annual free concert series "Full Moon Jam" on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Downtown Center (Country Music Mural), 810 State Street. Performances begin at 7 p.m. and continue until 9 or 9:30 p.m. through September 28th. Bring a lawn chair or come early to grab one of the 350 chairs provided on-site. Refreshments are sold in the concessions area for a nominal fee. Clean, well-stocked restrooms also available.

Bands subject to change without notice. For more information visit the City of Bristol TN website.

Wolf Hills Jazz Quartet

September 21 | Blackbird Bakery

Wolf Hills Jazz Quartet is Tom Peterson, Ed Davis, Joe Pendergast, and Ernie Braganza.

Museum Day Live!

September 23 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum

The Birthplace of Country Music Museum will open its doors free of charge on Saturday September 23, 2017, from 10am to 6pm as part of Smithsonian magazine’s 13th annual Museum Day Live!

With this event, participating museums across the United States emulate the spirit of the Smithsonian Institution’s Washington DC-based facilities, which offer free admission every day, and open their doors for free to those who download a Museum Day Live! ticket.Smithsonian recognizes the extraordinary power of museums, and other cultural institutions, to provide visitors with insight and inspiration. The event represents a nationwide commitment to boundless curiosity and the pursuit of knowledge wherever you are. Over 200,000 people downloaded tickets for last year’s event, and this year’s event is expected to attract more museum-goers than ever before.

This year, Museum Day Live! will feature special interactive lesson plans created by Smithsonian in partnership with Microsoft using Minecraft: Education Edition. The Birthplace of Country Music Museum will utilize the Smithsonian material-based lesson plans to enhance the Museum Day Live! experience. The museum will also be offering a free film screening of the PBS documentary American Experience: Tesla at 1pm in the Performance Theater, along with access to one of the Smithsonian activity kits in conjunction with our special exhibit "Things Come Apart."

Visitors who present the Museum Day Live! ticket at the museum will gain free entrance for two on September 23, 2017. One ticket per email address is permitted. For more information about Museum Day Live! 2017 and a full list of participating museums and cultural institutions, please visit here.Tickets will be available for download from August 25, 2017 through September 23, 2017.

PBS American Experience Documentary: Tesla

September 23 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum

During Museum Day Live! on September 23, 2017, we will offer a free film screening of the PBS documentary American Experience: Tesla at 1:00pm in the museum’s Performance Theater.

Nikola Tesla has come to be seen by many as a tragic figure, a visionary engineer who died impoverished and largely forgotten, eclipsed by names such as Edison and Marconi. A tireless inventor who registered numerous patents and developed many working prototypes, Tesla would become most famous for his dazzling demonstrations of his innovation and creativity. Unfortunately, Tesla the strange wizard and made scientist overtook Tesla the brilliant engineer. That his ideas ricocheted from tangible inventions to projections of a future with head-spinning possibilities only partly explained his ultimate downfall. Yet it was his technology that helped drive the electrical age in the 20th century, and his vision that imagined the wireless world of today. American Experience: Tesla chronicles the life of a man whose ideas revolutionized his time, and ours.

This free film screening is companion programming for our current special exhibit Things Come Apart, which is on display through October 8, 2017.

Comedian Henry Cho

September 23 | Paramount Center for the Arts

Henry’s TV credits include appearances on NBC’s The Tonight Show, CBS’s The Late, Late, Show, and NBC’s Young Comedians Special. He served two years as host of NBC’s Friday Night Videos and had many guest roles on various network sitcoms.

Henry’s one hour Comedy Central Special, “What’s That Clickin Noise?” is currently running and he can also be heard on Sirrus, XM and Blue Collar Radio. He’s also a regular performer at the Grand Ole Opry.

Some of Henry’s film credits include Universal’s McHale’s Navy with Tom Arnold and David Allen Greer; Say It Isn’t So with Heather Graham and Sally Field; and Material Girls with Hilary Duff and Angelica Houston produced by Madonna.

Henry was the keynote entertainer for The 59th Annual Radio & Television Correspondents’ Dinner attended by the Bush Administration and has worked extensively with Vince Gill, Amy Grant, Willie Nelson, Carrie Underwood and many, others. Henry’s clean comedy is so versatile that he can headline Vegas and then tour with Michael W. Smith in the same month.

In the fall of 2012 Henry sold a special/pilot to GAC (Great American Country) in which he served as host, co-writer, and co-producer. “The Henry Cho Show” aired with success and Henry awaits the chance to do more shows for the GAC network.

Derrick Ryan

September 23 | Bristol Station Brews & Taproom

Born in Bristol, Tennessee, and spending all of 2015 recording his debut album, 2016 holds nothing but promise for Derrick Ryan. A power house of heart and soul, a Derrick Ryan show will be a one of a kind experience.

Photography 101: Learning the Basics

September 25 | Bristol Public Library

BPL will offer a free class on photography basics on September 25 at 2:00 p.m. in the Jones Creativity Center.

In "Photography 101: Learning the Basics," registered participants will learn how to take a better photograph, instructing them on the basics of light and contrast and more, and demonstrating how these simple principals can improve the quality of each photo.

Space is limited, so registration is required; participants are also required to bring their own cameras (or cellphones). To register for the class, call the Bristol Public Library at 276-645-8780.

For more information about Photography 101, call276-645-8780 or email

All Abuzz About Beekeeping

September 26 | Bristol Public Library

Phil Blevins with the Virginia Cooperative Extension office will return to the Bristol Public Library to present "All Abuzz about Beekeeping." Starting at 7:00 p.m., Blevins will teach visitors about the incredible benefits of bees, the interesting quirks of beekeeping, and the rewards and perils of starting your own hive.

If you've ever wondered about beekeeping and how it works, visit the J. Henry Kegley Meeting Room on September 26 at 7pm.

Oh, and visitors will also have a chance to win a free prize!

BPL Movie Night: A Man Called Ove

September 27 | Bristol Public Library

In September, the BPL Book Club reads A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman and, as a special treat, the library will offer a free showing of the movie release of A Man Called Ove (2015).

Ove (Rolf Lassgard) is the quintessential grumpy old man. Set in his ways and harboring a short fuse, Ove spends his days enforcing neighborhood association rules and grieving for the loss of his late wife. He's nearly given up on life — and then a young family moves in next door, flattens his mailbox and tears up his quiet, well-ordered life.

BPL kicks things off on September 27 in the J. Henry Kegley Meeting Room at 6:00 p.m. Popcorn and water will be provided to movie attendees. Everyone is welcome to join!

Rated PG-13. 116 minutes. English subtitles only.

Book Signing: Clinton Blevins

September 27 | Blackbird Bakery

Join Blackbird Bakery for a reading and book signing with author Clinton Blevins.

Also Coming Up

Hiring Expo
September 21 | Bristol Motor Speedway
Full Moon Jam: Nightrain Guns n Roses Tribute Band
September 21 | Downtown Center
Wolf Hills Jazz Quartet
September 21 | Blackbird Bakery
Museum Day Live!
September 23 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
PBS American Experience Documentary: Tesla
September 23 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Comedian Henry Cho
September 23 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Derrick Ryan
September 23 | Bristol Station Brews & Taproom
Photography 101: Learning the Basics
September 25 | Bristol Public Library
All Abuzz About Beekeeping
September 26 | Bristol Public Library
BPL Movie Night: A Man Called Ove
September 27 | Bristol Public Library
Book Signing: Clinton Blevins
September 27 | Blackbird Bakery
The Time Machine
September 28 | Bristol Public Library
YP Bristol Recruitment Social
September 28 | Studio Brew
Full Moon Jam: Southern 76
September 28 | Downtown Center
The Diamonds
September 28 | Blackbird Bakery
Victor Lawson & Boogie Chillen w/ Catfish Frye Band
September 29 | Studio Brew
Creative & Crafty: Kindness Rocks
September 30 | Bristol Public Library
Bluegrass 45
October 2 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
The Paramount Chamber Players Presents "Pure Classics"
October 6 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Black Jacket Symphony: Fleetwood Mac's Rumours
October 7 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Delbert McClinton Presented by Big Spring Entertainment
October 13 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Wells Fargo Presents: John Silvia – "Ten Issues in a Two-Percent Economy"
October 19 | Paramount Center for the Arts
PUSH! Film Festival
October 20–22 | Downtown Bristol
Chicks with Hits: Terry Clark, Pam Tillis, Suzy Bogguss
October 20 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Appalachian AACA Trunk & Treat
October 27 | Downtown Bristol
Pumpkin Palooza and Downtown Trick or Treating
October 28 | Downtown Center
Farm & Fun Time: John McEuen and The Brother Boys
November 9 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Classic Hits 102.7 presents: 1964 The Tribute (Beatles)
November 10 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Veteran's Day Parade & Traditional Memorial Service
November 11 | Downtown Bristol
Corey Smith
November 11 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Theatre Bristol presents Annie
November 17–26 | Paramount Center for the Arts
Downtown Bristol's Annual Christmas Open House
November 20 | Downtown Bristol
Small Business Saturday
November 25 | Downtown Bristol
Annual Community Christmas Tree Lighting
November 27 | Cumberland Square Park
Junie B. in Jingle Bells, Batman Smells
December 1–17 | Theatre Bristol
Bristol Christmas Parade
December 7 | Downtown Bristol
Bristol Ballet presents The Nutcracker
December 8–9 | Paramount Center for the Arts

More Upcoming Events »
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