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Downtown Bristol Blog

PUSH! Film Festival Less Than Two Weeks Away: Schedule Available, Volunteers Needed, Tickets Online

PUSH! Film Festival has wrapped up the process of accepting film submissions for the October 12–14, 2018 film festival and is excited to announce the festival schedule is available.

PUSH! began the process of accepting film submissions in early January, which included an early deadline in February and a regular deadline in March. The most difficult task of planning the film festival is selecting the films to be screened. “The Programming Committee has a high-stakes job when it comes to vetting the films for the festival,” said Festival Chair, Jessica Barnett. “They’re entrusted with selecting films that not only meet the mission of PUSH!, but also ones that they know the audience will enjoy as well.”

The Festival’s late deadline was in April, with an extended deadline in May. “PUSH! Film Festival continues to be an international festival. How cool is that for Bristol?! This year we had submissions from Italy, France, Iran, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Australia, Switzerland, India, and our friends to the North – Canada,” said Barnett. “Our international submissions keep growing each year, which is exciting to see!”

PUSH!’s Programming Committee selected 25 hours of film to be screened in three days. “That’s a lot of film for us to schedule across a weekend,” said Programming Chair Rusty Sheridan. “We have workshops and other special events that will also be part of the festival schedule as well.” Filmmakers were notified in mid-August of their acceptance, and the RSVPs are now rolling in for attendance.

Over the summer, PUSH! Film Festival hosted its first Trivia Tour in 2018. “We always discuss ways to get people engaged with PUSH! and the idea of hosting a Trivia Tour was raised by our committee members,” said Barnett. “Trivia nights are popular and always a fun night out, and we thought they seemed like a great way to get film-lovers out and excited about the festival fast approaching in October – indeed, we wanted these fun trivia nights to not only get word out about PUSH!, but to also work well with our downtown businesses. It’s a win-win!”

Barnett adds, “The winning teams of each trivia night event will meet on the Friday night of the film festival to play in the Tournament of Champions Film Trivia. There will be prizes at each of the trivia nights for the winning teams, and an ultimate prize for the team champion in October!”

This Friday, October 5, Bristol Tennessee Parks and Recreation will be hosting a family-friendly movie with pre-film activities set to begin at 7:00pm. The film will begin at sunset at the Country Music Mural stage at the Downtown Center. Studio Brew will also be hosting the film screening of “The Big Lebowski” at 7:30pm on the same night in honor of the film’s 20th anniversary.

In addition, with the Festival quickly approaching, volunteers are needed. There are a variety of volunteer needs during the festival. If you are interested in volunteering for PUSH!, please visit Underneath the ‘CONTRIBUTE’ section, please complete the 2018 Volunteer Application.

Filmgoers and PUSH! supporters can purchase Festival tickets online at Tickets may also be purchased at Believe in Bristol located at 20 6th Street Bristol, Tennessee. There are a few different pass options for PUSH! so you can choose which option best fits you:

Single-screening ticketscan only be purchased at the venue or Box Office (Believe in Bristol) for $5 with cash or credit card. These tickets will not be sold online.
Five-screening passesare $20 and can be purchased with credit card online, or with cash or credit card at a venue or the Box Office (Believe in Bristol).
Weekend passes (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday)are $50 in advance and $60 the weekend of the festival and can be purchased with credit card online, or with cash or credit card at a venue or the Box Office (Believe in Bristol).

Festival attendees should note, that because seating is limited, film attendance will be based on a first-come, first-served basis at each film venue. Film venues will be The Paramount Center for the Arts and The Birthplace of Country Music Museum.

About PUSH! Film Festival

PUSH! Film Festival, held in Historic Downtown Bristol, TN/VA, hosts a variety of curated movies, workshops and presentations about film, along with screenings of juried shorts, features, and films focused on Tennessee and Virginia.

Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Earns International Awards

On the heels of its 18th annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion celebration, the Birthplace of Country Music (BCM) is proud to announce that the music festival has earned three awards from the International Festivals & Events Association (IFEA) for its 2017 event.

IFEA awards are revered as major achievements in the events industry, placing Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion in competition with events across the globe, including festivals in Ireland, Australia, South Korea, China, Canada, and Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates.

The festival achieved Gold in the category of Best Event Video Promotion for its 2017 Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion Recap Video, produced by Loch & Key Productions of Knoxville, Tennessee.

Bristol Rhythm also earned IFEA Gold for Best Newspaper Insert/Supplement for its 17th annual printed Festival Guide; the pocket-sized magazine that is distributed by the Bristol Herald Courier and at the festival each year. The Festival Guide was produced in partnership with The High Road Agency of the Tri-Cities Tenn./Va.

Additionally, Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion achieved Silver in the category of Best Emergency Preparedness & Risk Management Plan for an Event.

"We are thrilled to be recognized by the IFEA for our efforts in making Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion the best festival it can be for our attendees and for our community," said Leah Ross, BCM Executive Director. BCM is the parent nonprofit organization of Bristol Rhythm, the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, and Radio Bristol. "Our staff and volunteers work very hard each year to refine our procedures and book great music. Any accolades we receive is a reflection of their efforts and dedication."

In 2016 Bristol Rhythm received the Bronze Grand Pinnacle for the overall festival, among the highest of honors from the IFEA.

Dates for the 19th annual Bristol Rhythm & Roots Reunion music festival are scheduled for September 20-22, 2019 in Historic Downtown Bristol, Virginia-Tennessee. Early bird weekend passes will go on sale Black Friday, November 23, 2018. Visit for more information.

Downtown Bristol Events

Preserving History in Southwest Virginia

October 4 | Bristol Train Station

Residents, property owners, and citizens interested in preserving historic buildings, places, and archaeological sites in Southwest Virginia are encouraged to attend information sessions scheduled for early October in the towns of Marion and Appalachia and the City of Bristol at which staff of the Department of Historic Resources will discuss various programs including the Virginia Landmarks Register, the National Register of Historic Places, state and federal historic rehabilitation tax credits, and archaeology in the region, among other topics.

The sessions, which are open to the public and require no pre-registration, are scheduled for October 2 in Appalachia in Wise County, October 3 (at the Lincoln Theatre) in Marion in Smyth County, and October 4 in Bristol. The venues and times for the sessions will be announced at a later date along with detailed agendas. The Marion event will also include representatives of Preservation Virginia.

“Our outreach this October to citizens and communities in Southwest Virginia has been a top priority of the agency and we look forward to this long-planned tour,” said Julie V. Langan, director of the Department of Historic Resources (DHR), who will join DHR staff during the sessions and presentations.

Staff of DHR will discuss programs that offer technical assistance and incentives that assist in recognizing, restoring, and preserving historic buildings and sites. Among the topics DHR staff will discuss will be:

  • The process and criteria for listing a historic property on the Virginia Landmarks Register and the National Register of Historic Places.
  • The state’s historical marker program including the criteria for highlighting a person, place or event on a state historical marker and the process of applying for a marker.
  • Archaeology in Southwest Virginia and programs for the stewardship or investigation of archaeological sites, especially those currently threatened.
  • An overview of Virginia’s preservation easement program and the process of donating an easement in order to preserve a historic property in perpetuity.
  • An overview of the state and federal rehabilitation tax credit program and qualifications and process of how to apply for tax credits for projects to rehabilitate or repurpose properties listed on the Virginia Landmarks Register and National Register of Historic Places.

All three sessions are free and open to the public. For more information about these events, contact DHR’s Randy Jones atrandy.jones@dhr.virginia.govor 540-578-3031 or contact Mike Pulice atMichael.pulice@dhr.virginia.govor 540-387-5443.

Chicks with Hits: Terri Clark, Pam Tillis, Suzy Bogguss

October 4 | Paramount Bristol


Hailing from Medicine Hat, Alberta, Canada, Terri Clark is a 3-time JUNO Award winner and 8-time CCMA Entertainer of the Year and she has taken home the Female Vocalist of the Year award five times. She still holds the honor of being the only Canadian female artist to be a member of the Grand Ole Opry. Terri has sold more than four million albums worldwide and has made her mark on radio with 13 Top Ten singles – hits that include “Better Things To Do,” “Poor Poor Pitiful Me,” “Girls Lie Too,” and “I Just Wanna Be Mad.” Terri is host of Country Gold, a four-hour Classic Country radio show that airs on more than 100 stations across the US and Canada. In 2016 Terri brought her critically acclaimed “Back to My Roots Solo Acoustic Tour” to Canada. The 40-city tour traversed Canada from Prince Edward Island to British Columbia and showcased Terri’s hit songs in an intimate acoustic setting with stories and laughs along the way. Terri isn’t slowing down in 2017 — she’ll continue to tour in the US and Canada with her full band and solo shows. In October of 2017 Terri will join forces with Pam Tillis and Suzy Bogguss for a guitar-pull acoustic tour call the “Chicks With Hits Tour.”

As the child of Country Music Royalty, Pam Tillis was determined from a young age to find her own way in music as a singer and songwriter. Pam Tillis has always insisted on writing and cutting songs that speak from the soul. With 6 number ones and 14 top ten singles, Pam knows all about breaking the platinum barrier. With more than 30 singles charting on US Billboard charts and selling more than 7 Million copies of her studio albums, Pam’s critical acclaim has not diminished. Sony Records “It's All Relative” (a tribute to Mel Tillis) was USA Today’s #4 Country Album of the Year and most recently Pam has released 3 Albums from her own record label Stellar Cat Records landing her a #1 on the European ECMA Chart. Pam is a 15-time CMA nominee and 2-time winner, a 9-time Academy of Country Music Award nominee, a 2-time Grammy award winner and 6-time Grammy nominee, an American Music Award’s nominee. Most recently, a 2 time IBMA nominee and one time winner. As a songwriter, Pam’s songs have been recorded by respected names throughout all genres of music, including Chaka Khan, Juice Newton, Dan Seals, Gloria Gaynor, Conway Twitty and Highway 101. She is currently a reoccurring guest on the TV show “Nashville”, performed an extended run on Broadway in New York in Smokey Joe’s Cafe and is a proud member of The Grand Ole Opry. Pam Tillis’ star continues to shine brightly in the 3rd decade of her career.

During the creative explosion that was country music in the 1990s Suzy Bogguss sold 4 million records with sparkling radio hits like “Outbound Plane”, “Someday Soon”, “Letting Go”, and “Drive South”. But you can’t peg Suzy that easily. In the midst of her country popularity she took time off to make a duets album with the legendary Chet Atkins. In 2003 she made an album of modern swing music with Ray Benson of Asleep At The Wheel. An album of original music in 2007 landed her at number 4 on the jazz charts. Her folk music roots show through in her frequent appearances on public radio’s A Prairie Home Companion, in the Grammy she earned for her work on Beautiful Dreamer: The Songs of Stephen Foster, and in her critically acclaimed album and book project from 2011, American Folk Songbook. In 2014 she released Lucky, a collection of songs written by Merle Haggard and interpreted through Suzy’s crystal vocals from the female point of view. Her latest offering, Aces Redux, is a re-recording of her platinum selling album Aces produced by Suzy with fresh arrangements and her signature sparkling vocals. So yes, you can call her a country singer if you want, but really that’s just the beginning.

Appalachian Arcana LIVE podcast

October 4 | Elderbrew

Appalachian Arcana brings you tales of the strange and unusual from around the Appalachian region. From hair-raising accounts of true crime to haints and hauntings, ghost cats and goatmen, tune in for stories of the many things that go bump in the night in these hills.

Appalachian Arcana returns with new cohost, Sarah Faulk!

HB Beverly

October 4 | Blackbird Bakery

Blackbird Bakery is proud to welcome HB Beverly to perform Thursday,October 4th, at 8:00 PM.

Doors Open Downtown presents "Dinner" and a Movie!

October 5 | Downtown Center

ON OCTOBER 5TH Doors Open Downtown presents "Dinner" and a Movie!! With the help of Bristol Tennessee Parks and Recreation, we will be showing Ferris Bueller's Day Off for FREE at the Downtown Center! We will also be serving popcorn and soft drinks for FREE with proof of purchase at ANY downtown business! Whether it be dinner/drinks, shopping, or an activity like billiards or the escape game, keep your receipt for popcorn and soda on us! (Combo for $1 without downtown business receipt.) So join us as it gets dark for a family friendly film downtown!

Brew & View: The Big Lebowski

October 5 | Studio Brew

Slip into your comfiest robe and call up your bowling pals. It's one week until the fourth annual PUSH! Film Festival, and we've already got festival fever. We've partnered with Studio Brew to host Brew & View, a film-lover's event that includes a costume contest (with an awesome prize including weekend passes to the festival), a themed menu for purchase, and a screening of "The Big Lebowski." See you there!

"Careful man, there's a beverage here!"

The Black Jacket Symphony: AC/DC "Back in Black"

October 5 | Paramount Bristol


The Black Jacket Symphony offers a unique concert experience through recreating classic albums in a live performance setting. A selected album is performed in its entirety by a group of handpicked musicians specifically selected for each album, with no sonic detail being overlooked — the musicians do whatever it takes to musically reproduce the album.

The performance is separated into two sets. The first set features the album being recreated as a true symphonic piece. The second set, which features a selection of the album artist's "greatest hits," opens in full contrast to the first set with an incredible light display and the symphony being much more laid back. The tone is set very quickly that the show will feature the high level of musicianship of the act being covered and will also be accompanied by all the bells and whistles of a major rock and roll show.


Billy Crawford Band

October 5 | Quaker Steak and Lube

About Billy Crawford Band
Blues guitar might be associated with Mississippi, Texas and Chicago, but a man of the mid-South has something to say about that. The city of Bristol, smack on the Tennessee/Virginia border, claims itself as the birthplace of country music. But one of its native sons is making a huge blues noise.
The common denominator in all of this is Billy Crawford – raised playing bass in church, then gaining an early hard-rock pedigree on electric guitar. But for the past three decades, he has turned his six-string action toward the blues.

For much of the 1990s, audiences around the world heard Crawford’s intense work with blues-rocker Deborah Coleman. He gave up the road in 2002, when his wife gave birth to their son. Turns out, son Tyler is a little guitar hotshot, too.

But his daddy still has something to say. His Bristol-based Billy Crawford Band includes some of that region’s finest blues men. The fire is still burning blue from Crawford’s Guitar, as he rips through blues, ballads, rock, surf – even New Orleans-style.

Underpinning it all is a band with plenty of energy and mastery of dynamics. Go to to hear and see more and find out when the band is playing in your town.

Best Christmas Pageant Ever Auditions

October 6–10 | Theatre Bristol

Theatre Bristol announces auditions for its holiday production ofThe Best Christmas Pageant Ever,directed by Steve Baskett, on October 6, 8, and 9 at Theatre Bristol, 512 State Street, Bristol, TN. The popular holiday play comes to Theatre Bristol's ARTspace for Christmas and we invite everyone to audition. Show details, audition times, character roles, and rehearsal dates are available at

No preparation is required to audition and roles are available for men, women, and children.Doors will open 30 minutes before the first audition on each of these dates:

Saturday, October 6th at 10:30 am
Monday, October 8th at 5:30 pm
Tuesday, October 9th at 5:30 pm
Wednesday, October 10th for callbacks, if needed

Anyone interested in being a part of the production crew may contact Theatre Bristol at, or be present at any of the audition times.

How To Workshop: Glass Trees

October 6 | Kil'n Time Ceramics Studio

Join Susan for another fun and informative Glass Workshop! This time attendees will have the choice to make 1 large glass piece with Fall trees or two small glass dishes with leaves!

Turn Out for the Cure

October 6 | Paramount Bristol

Susan G. Komen of East Tennessee and The Highlands Ballet are joining forces to present a gala fundraiser and performance at Paramount Bristol on Saturday, October 6. The community is invited to “Turn out for the Cure” to make a difference for those in our community who are battling breast cancer – while supporting the performing arts.

Your $50 ticket (plus applicable venue fees) includes admission, desserts & drinks, live & silent auctions, and thrilling performances of short works by the dancers of the acclaimed Highlands Ballet.

The evening’s entertainment begins with excerpts of original choreography from Highlands Ballet’s repertoire – “Gershwin, by George,” “Hallelujah,” and the new “All That Jazz.” In addition, the company will present a sneak preview of “Magic Butterfly,” a brand new ballet that will debut at Paramount Bristol later this year. “Magic Butterfly is a collaboration with composer Evelyn Pursley-Kopitzke and the Paramount Chamber Players.

During the evening, patrons can bid on fabulous auction packages including trips, event tickets, and other luxury items including a pink Fender Stratocaster guitar. Everyone will enjoy refreshments donated by award-winning local bakeries, restaurants, & breweries.

The mission of Susan G. Komen East TN is to provide funding for breast health services, breast cancer education and outreach in our 24 counties, including the Knoxville and Tri-Cities regions. Highlands Ballet, located in Abingdon, VA provides support and inspiration for young and aspiring dancers in a wholesome and friendly atmosphere. In addition to fostering an appreciation for the art of dance, Highlands Ballet offers a tiered program of training for students emphasizing technical and artistic excellence.

Major Mojo and Annie Robinette

October 6 | Quaker Steak and Lube

Major Mojo with Annie Robinette. Saturday October 6th at Quaker Steak & Lube in Bristol!

About Major Mojo
Rocking band with great original music and some great covers. Very High Energy. All Professional Musicians.

Salsa Dance Night

October 6 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room

Come Dance Salsa Bachata Merengue, Reggaeton hip hop and more!
Beginner Dance Lesson 8:40pm to 9:15pm
$10.00 Cover Charge age 18 and up
Come On Out And Enjoy Some Good Music, Drinks And Have Some Fun See You On The Floor!

American Horror Story Trivia

October 8 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room

It’s spooky time in Bristol and what better way to kick off the month of Halloween then American Horror Story Trivia. Study up on seasons 1-3 of AHS, bring your friends and lets get SPOOKED. (Murder House, Asylum, Coven)

PUSH! Film Festival

October 12–14 | Downtown Bristol

PUSH! Film Festival is a fourth-year event that will take place on the weekend of October 12-14, 2018 in bustling Historic Downtown Bristol TN/VA. As a celebration of the cinematic and visual arts in the heart of the twin cities of Bristol, the festival will bring diverse films to our community and showcase 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 in all of us.

PUSH! spotlights films that provoke thought and spur action. We're a change agent — challenging audiences to push the boundaries of their own worldview.

We are also a filmmaker's film festival.

We believe in empowering filmmakers by giving them a platform to share thoughtful ideas through any genre.

Sure, there are awards to be won, but we also put a lot of focus on the overall festival experience.

To us, it's about community, conversation, and calls-to-action.

It's also about showcasing quality storytelling in desirable venues and providing filmmakers with a chance to network and grow through a variety of workshops, Q&A sessions, and social events.

Hosted in twin cities that know no borders, PUSH! provides the platform, you provide the perspectives.

For more information, visit or purchase tickets here.

Community Notice Board

Call to submit proposals for exhibition at Bristol Library

Ongoing | Bristol Public Library

The Bristol Public Library invites artists, groups and curators to submit proposals for exhibition in the Virgie R. Fleenor Gallery. Work should exemplify the mission“Expanding Minds, Building Communities.” Submit contact information, description including titles and dimensions, two to 10 images, résumé and dates to Bristol Public Library, Attn: TJ DeWitt, 701 Goode St., Bristol, VA 24201 or

Also Coming Up

The Casual Word: Teen Poetry Class
July 17 – January 1 | Bristol Public Library
Preserving History in Southwest Virginia
October 4 | Bristol Train Station
Chicks with Hits: Terri Clark, Pam Tillis, Suzy Bogguss
October 4 | Paramount Bristol
Appalachian Arcana LIVE podcast
October 4 | Elderbrew
HB Beverly
October 4 | Blackbird Bakery
Doors Open Downtown presents "Dinner" and a Movie!
October 5 | Downtown Center
Brew & View: The Big Lebowski
October 5 | Studio Brew
The Black Jacket Symphony: AC/DC "Back in Black"
October 5 | Paramount Bristol
Billy Crawford Band
October 5 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Best Christmas Pageant Ever Auditions
October 6–10 | Theatre Bristol
How To Workshop: Glass Trees
October 6 | Kil'n Time Ceramics Studio
Turn Out for the Cure
October 6 | Paramount Bristol
Major Mojo and Annie Robinette
October 6 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Salsa Dance Night
October 6 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room
American Horror Story Trivia
October 8 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room
Fiddler on the Roof
October 9 – November 18 | Paramount Bristol
Bristol Hotel Grand Opening
October 11 | Bristol Hotel
The Diamonds
October 11 | Blackbird Bakery
October 12–13 | Bristol Station Brews & Taproom
PUSH! Film Festival
October 12–14 | Downtown Bristol
Family Pumpkin Painting
October 13 | Kil'n Time Ceramics Studio
(doOm) Yoga
October 13 | Elderbrew
State Street String Band Bluegrass
October 15 | Blackbird Bakery
Artist Meet & Greet: Virginia Hiss
October 16 | Blackbird Bakery
Farm & Fun Time ft. the Quebe Sisters and The Barefoot Movement
October 17 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
WPBA Tour Event
October 18–21 | Borderline Billiards
VA's 9th District Congressional Debate
October 18 | Bristol Hotel
Brushes for Books fundraiser for Sullivan County Imagination Library
October 19 | Mercantile on State
Lyle Lovett & Robert Earl Keen
October 19 | Paramount Bristol
Networking & Promotion Workshop
October 24 | Bristol Chamber of Commerce
Spectral Celestial: Art Exhibit by Brian Serway
October 26 | Elderbrew
Pumpkin Palooza and Downtown Trick or Treating
October 27 | Downtown Center
Miss Food City Pageant 2019
October 27 | Paramount Bristol
Music of Cream: 50th Anniversary World Tour
October 28 | Paramount Bristol
AAME Speaker Series: Radio Frankenstein: 20th Century Madmen and Their Monsters
October 30 | Bristol Public Library
Hope Gala 2018
November 2 | Paramount Bristol
Sidewalk Prophets
November 3 | Paramount Bristol
Evening with John Anderson – Acoustic — special guest Elvie Shane
November 4 | Paramount Bristol
Veteran's Day Parade & Traditional Memorial Service
November 10 | Downtown Bristol
Downtown Bristol's Annual Christmas Open House
November 19 | Downtown Bristol
Steve Earle and the Dukes: 30th Anniversary of Copperhead Road
November 23 | Paramount Bristol
Small Business Saturday
November 24 | Downtown Bristol
Annual Community Christmas Tree Lighting
November 26 | Cumberland Square Park
RUMBLE: The Indians Who Rocked the World
November 29 | Paramount Bristol
The Best Christmas Pageant Ever
November 30 – December 16 | Theatre Bristol
Sweetheart of the Rodeo
December 1 | Paramount Bristol
Bristol Christmas Parade
December 6 | Downtown Bristol
Bristol Ballet presents "The Nutcracker"
December 7–8 | Paramount Bristol
EmiSunshine Christmas Show with Etta May
December 16 | Paramount Bristol
An Evening with Dailey & Vincent
January 4 | Paramount Bristol
AAME Speaker Series: An Artist’s Journey through Virginia
February 25 | Bristol Public Library
AAME Speaker Series: The Play's the Thing
March 4 | Bristol Public Library
AAME Speaker Series: Art in Advertising
March 14 | Bristol Public Library

More Upcoming Events »
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