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Downtown Bristol Blog

Border Bash Celebrates 20 years in Historic Downtown Bristol


Celebrating 20 years in Historic Downtown, Border Bash—Bristol's premier spring/summer concert series—is back for another amazing season starting May 17, 2019! Hosted by Believe in Bristol, and the Cities of Bristol, Virginia and Tennessee, Border Bash is about fun, family, great music, and creating memories to last a lifetime.

Border Bash, a free summer concert series held annually May through August, celebrates its 20th anniversary including children’s activities, arts & craft and food vendors in addition to live music and much more. All the events will rotate on State Street this year, and the Star Spangled July 4th Border Bash will be held in Cumberland Square Park.

“We are always excited when it’s time for Border Bash.It is an opportunity to bring great music to our downtown and bring the community together during the summer months.Believe in Bristol is proud to have brought this event to the community for twenty years,” stated Maggie Bishop, Executive Director, Believe in Bristol.

The Border Bash line-up for 2019 is:

May 17 – 7:00 pm, Magus and the Movers
8:30 pm, Kirk Fleta

June 7 – 7:00 pm, Fritz & Co.
8:30 pm, Mr. Nobody & The Extras

June 21 – 7:00 pm, Bella Raye
8:30 pm, South Hill Banks

July 4 (Thursday) – 8:00 pm, The Cleverlys

July 19 – 7:00 pm, Jake Quillin
8:30 pm, 49 Winchester

August 2 – 7:00 pm, Magnolia Boulevard
8:30 pm, Holler Jake with Dave Eggar

Border Bash is hosted by Believe in Bristol and the Cities of Bristol. Border Bash would not be possible without our community sponsors. Our sponsors in 2019 include Bank of Tennessee, Birthplace of Country Music, Blackbird Bakery, Bristol Herald Courier, Camellia Digital, Coca-Cola, Dr. & Mrs. Ben Cowan, Express AV Productions, Dr. & Mrs. John Fincher, Framed, Jeff & Terri Gregory, Knoxville TVA Employee Credit Union, Lost State Distilling, Merrill-Lynch, Anna Morgan, Dale & Joneen Sargent, Tom & Barbara Smith, The Bristol Hotel, John & Ann Tickle, Tri-City Tent & Event, Turtleson, and Dr. & Mrs. Zaidi.



State Street Farmer’s Market opens for 2019 season

The State Street Farmer’s Market opens the first Saturday in May of each year in historic Downtown Bristol. The market is located at 810 State Street and will open at 8am and run until noon. Opening day will feature plant seedlings, greens, spring onions, and other spring vegetables, along with artisan gifts.

The market staff offers some advice for visitors in advance of Saturday’s opening day:

  • Dress for the weather. Vendors will be at the market rain or shine, so be prepared for what Mother Nature will offer. A little sunscreen may be useful, especially for little shoppers in strollers.
  • Have a cooler in your vehicle or an insulated shopping bag. Vendors will provide bags for your purchases, but temperature sensitive items are best kept cool until you get home. Parking is available all around the market, so purchased items can be quickly transferred to a vehicle cooler. Insulated shopping bags are another great way to protect your purchases.
  • Bring your questions! One of the neatest parts of the farmer’s market is the opportunity to meet and develop a relationship with the actual farmers. Ask how they grow, produce, or prepare the products they have for sale. Feel free to place orders for future needs. Plan ahead to purchase seasonal fruits, vegetables, or that special artisan gift for an upcoming occasion.
  • Bring cash; small bills and coins are appreciated, and some vendors do take credit cards. Remember, SNAP is accepted by most food vendors. SNAP dollars may be doubled at the market, up to $20. Shoppers may check- in at the concession stand for more details.

You are supporting the local economy. All vendors offer items that are locally produced, and they take pride in what they are offering.

For more information please contact Mike Musick, Recreation Superintendent, at 423-764-7046 or email mmusick@bristoltn.org.



It's all in a Name: Encouraging Citizen Input


The effort to name our region continues to move forward, and the next step is to ask our citizens. It is important we hear from those who live and work in our region. They have relevant stories to add and insight to offer, which will assist North Star, the consulting firm, in developing a name recommendation that works for the region. While one opinion is simply that — an opinion — a collection of opinions can be powerful.

Please take a moment to complete the survey here. It will take about 15 minutes, and only one completed survey is allowed per IP address. The link will be available until Wednesday, May 22.

For more information on the regional naming initiative, please visit www.nameourregion.com.



Downtown Bristol Events

Western Wednesday: Blazing the Western Trail

May 8 | Bristol Public Library


Jeff Waring (Starrett) and his friends, Tex Harding and Cannonball, become involved in a bloody rivalry between competing stagecoach lines. Mary Halliday (Carole Mathews) and Forrest Brent (Al Bridge) are in a race to have the top stagecoach line in the West, but when murder is thrown into the mix, it’s up to the Durango Kid to stop more bloodshed.

Not rated; 60 minutes.

Wine & Unwind Wednesday with Isaac Gibson

May 8 | Bristol Hotel


Please come out and enjoy the latest installment of Wine & Unwind Wednesdays with Isaac Gibson of 49 Winchester at our beautiful rooftop bar and lounge, Lumac! Get here early because it's first come, first serve and the music starts at 7:00 pm!

Tri-Cities: Small Business Festival

May 9–11 | Downtown Bristol


The Cities of Bristol, TN and VA and the Bristol Chamber of Commerce have teamed up with Startup Tri-Cities, a local entrepreneur organization, to bring a piece of the vibrant Austin, Texas startup community to our region. The 2019 Small Business Festival is a collaboration between small business owners, entrepreneurs, and the many supporting organizations that bring innovation and growth to our region.

Serving as a culminating event for National Small Business Week, the festival will take place May 9 –11. Events will be hosted across the Tri-Cities with a focus on providing actionable information to help anyone start and grow their businesses. Individuals curious about any type of small business are welcome. By combining retail, service, and technology companies together, amazing things happen as they share their experiences. The festival also provides our region with the opportunity to highlight the excellent programs and services already available to local entrepreneurs, and provides valuable exposure for our local subject matter experts. Selections from the festival lineup include:

Thursday, May 9:
9am: Thursday begins with a kickoff event at Bristol Motor Speedway with featured entrepreneur and speaker Jose Castillo, of NASCAR Trackside Live, who will be speaking on “The Birth of an Idea” which will inspire your creative side.

Afternoon: Workshops on how to start and grow a business will be held in Johnson City.

6:30pm: The fourth annual Pitches and Pints, the region’s largest open “Shark Tank”-like competition, will put aspiring entrepreneurs against the clock to pitch their ideas in 5-minutes or less for a chance to win cash prizes. Free finger foods, local craft beer, and audience participation are part of this year’s event.

Friday, May 10:
9am: Friday begins with a kick off breakfast in Kingsport’s Inventor Center, a new facility to help anyone build a prototype, learn about entrepreneurship, and engage our youth in hands on STEM education.

Afternoon: Workshops on how to start and grow a business will be held in Kingsport’s Inventor Center.

5:30pm: Entrepreneurial Networking Social will be held in downtown Kingsport to connect small businesses together, share stories, and learn from one another.

Saturday, May 11:

9am-5pm: All day in downtown Bristol, local entrepreneurs, business leaders, and supporting organizations will gather at the Foundation Event Facility on State Street to provide inspirational talks, workshops, and detailed information on how to start and grow your business. The focus of this main event is to provide all businesses with valuable tools to take their existing business to the next level with actionable information. For those thinking of starting a new venture, Saturday will have the information you need on how to get started in entrepreneurship in the Tri-Cities, as well as on pitfalls to avoid.

“When local entrepreneurs get together and openly share their experiences, challenges, and successes, amazing things happen economically for the region’s growth and development,” said David Nelson, entrepreneur and Startup Tri-Cities member. He added, “Bristol and Startup Tri-Cities invite everyone with an interest or experience in entrepreneurship to join them at the Small Business Festival.”

This festival is a free event to all attendees and refreshments will be provided at select events.

To learn more about the 2019 Small Business Festival and to view the full schedule as events and speakers are added, visit www.startuptri.com/sbf2019. For more information, about Startup Tri-Cities, contact David Nelson at info@startuptri.com.

PC Class: Using Instagram

May 9 | Bristol Public Library


During May, the JCC will be hosting a special class on social media and using Instagram. Interested students will receive step-by-step instructions on how to set up an Instagram account and learn the basics of using Instagram, including how to upload and edit pictures, how to add “stories,” and how to edit your profile.

No registration is required. To join, simply visit the Bristol Public Library on May 9 at 5:30 p.m. or the Avoca Branch Library on May 16 at 2:00 p.m. For more information, please contact the JCC at 276-645-8790.

Farm & Fun Time ft. Davina & The Vagabonds, Hoot & Holler

May 9 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum


Radio Bristol’s Farm and Fun Time live variety show featuring special music guests Davina & The Vagabonds and Hoot & Holler, plus house band Bill & the Belles, Thursday, May 9th at 7:00 p.m.

Tickets $30, doors open at 6:30 p.m.

Farm and Fun Time hearkens back to the days of classic live radio and features today’s top traditional country, bluegrass and old-time artists. We’re proud to bring back this classic program from the 1940s and 1950s to a new generation of listeners!

Hosted by Kris Truelsen and featuringhouse band Bill and the Belles, Farm and Fun Time is a celebration of Appalachian music and culture with various segments jingles and featured artists. You can enjoy the show every month, live in person, at the museum by purchasing a ticket, or you canlisten onlineat listenradiobristol.org or through our mobileApp for iOS and Android. Farm and Fun Time is proudly supported byEastman Credit Union,Window World of Tri-Cities, andHVAC Bristol.

Stone Creek Four

May 9 | Quaker Steak and Lube


Let's rock out the patio!

The Diamonds

May 9 | Blackbird Bakery


From East Tennessee, The Diamonds play a diverse mix of music, specializing in jazz standards. The group performs at various venues and events throughout the region, including weddings, parties, and restaurants. They have also volunteered at many nursing homes, assisted living homes, and charitable organizations in the area.

Rylee Peters

May 10 | Blackbird Bakery


Join Blackbird Bakery to enjoy the powerhouse voice of local Rylee Peters from 8:00 pm to 10:00 pm!

BIG Son

May 10 | Quaker Steak and Lube


BIG Son is an eclectic Mountain Soul band featuring Jared Bentley, Mike Sams, Kevin Light, Cepheus Strachan, and Jerry Henninger. We like playing soulful music for soulful people. It’s a pretty basic recipe.

Vespers and Cold Mountain Valley

May 10 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room


9pm show, $5 & all ages come get your face fuzzed off

Bristol Ballet's The Wizard of Oz

May 11 | Paramount Bristol


Follow the Yellow Brick Road to the Paramount Bristol for Bristol Ballet’s production of “The Wizard of Oz”! Kicking off a multiple event celebration at the Paramount of the 80th anniversary of the movie release, Bristol Ballet puts its own spin on the familiar story and characters. Music, storyline, and characters will all be recognized as they dance their way to the Emerald City to help Dorothy find her way home. One show only, so get your tickets now! Bristol Ballet is funded in part by the Virginia Commission for the Arts, Art Works, Tennessee Arts Commission, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

TICKETS

BLEAK: A Study of Color and Lack-Thereof

May 11 | Elderbrew


Join us as we welcome local artist Matthew Kilby this Saturday to Elderbrew.

Juan John

May 11 | Bristol Station Brews & Taproom


Bristol Station will host the music by Juan John on Saturday May 11th.

State Street Tattoo Festival Kick-off!

May 11 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room


Friendship Motorsports presents: State Street Tattoo Festival Kick-Off Party at Bloom Cafe & Listening Room!

8pm / $5 raffle buy-in

Limited-run beer from Elderbrew! Music! Raffle for tattoo festival tickets, and more!

Music 8:30-12pm from House Cat, Scroungehound (wv), and Indighost

From the Edge

May 11 | Quaker Steak and Lube


From the Edge is a new and fresh Rock n’ Roll Cover Band with members from East Tennessee and Southwest Virginia. Playing all types of venues from Pubs and Parties to Weddings and Festivals! Providing an electric mix of Girl Pop Tunes to your favorite oldies, we will serve up music you will absolutely enjoy.

Discover Your Roots in the Courthouse

May 13 | Bristol Public Library


The May 13th meeting of the Bristol Historical Association will feature a presentation on family tree research by two experienced researchers. Dan Kegley, the current Deputy Clerk with the Smyth County Circuit Court, will begin with the presentation, entitled, “Finding Grandpa in the Vault”. The second half of the program will be led by Diane Hayes on “Restoring the Past: Uncovering Black Gold.” The meeting begins at 6:30pm at the meeting room at the Bristol Public Library.

For 23 years Dan Kegley worked at Smyth County News & Messenger and Washington County News in positions including reporter, editor, photographer/darkroom technician, and general manager. In 2012 he became a deputy clerk in Smyth County Circuit Court. He has been the records vault supervisor there since August 2015. He is the past president of the Archeological Society of Virginia and its Wolf Hills Chapter, and has written about the 19th century flatboat enterprises on the North Fork of the Holston River.

Diane Hayes is from Southwest Virginia and attended Carnegie High School in Marion, an all-black school for grades 1- 4. After schools integrated she attended the traditional Marion public schools. She was accepted and graduated from Ferrum College and took her first job with Franklin County Recreation Department’s Young Adults Conservation Corps, and in 1979 she began working at the Franklin County Public Library. During her 33 years at the library Diane compiled more than 50 family histories, 90 percent were African American. When a local historian and genealogist passed away she compiled her collection titled "The Gertrude Mann Collection.”

This informative program is free to the public and is in partnership with the Bristol Public Library’s mission of “Expanding Minds and Building Community”.

Contact Tim Buchanan, program chairman, for details of this or other upcoming programs, buchanan03@bvu.net. Get more details on Facebook at BRISTOL HISTORY.

Also Coming Up

Western Wednesday: Blazing the Western Trail
May 8 | Bristol Public Library
Wine & Unwind Wednesday with Isaac Gibson
May 8 | Bristol Hotel
Tri-Cities: Small Business Festival
May 9–11 | Downtown Bristol
PC Class: Using Instagram
May 9 | Bristol Public Library
Farm & Fun Time ft. Davina & The Vagabonds, Hoot & Holler
May 9 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Stone Creek Four
May 9 | Quaker Steak and Lube
The Diamonds
May 9 | Blackbird Bakery
Rylee Peters
May 10 | Blackbird Bakery
BIG Son
May 10 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Vespers and Cold Mountain Valley
May 10 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room
Bristol Ballet's The Wizard of Oz
May 11 | Paramount Bristol
BLEAK: A Study of Color and Lack-Thereof
May 11 | Elderbrew
Juan John
May 11 | Bristol Station Brews & Taproom
State Street Tattoo Festival Kick-off!
May 11 | Bloom Cafe & Listening Room
From the Edge
May 11 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Discover Your Roots in the Courthouse
May 13 | Bristol Public Library
Featured Artist Meet & Greet: Dale McKinney
May 14 | Blackbird Bakery
Historic District Preservation Awards Ceremony
May 16 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Kevin Lorenz
May 16 | Blackbird Bakery
Rex Montgomery
May 17 | State Line Bar & Grill
Border Bash
May 17 | Downtown Bristol
Literarily Cool
May 18 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Doom Yoga
May 18 | Elderbrew
Ryan Ward
May 18 | Elderbrew
Daniel Cooper Trio
May 18 | Blackbird Bakery
Radio Bristol Book Club
May 23 | Birthplace of Country Music Museum
Wrestle
May 23 | Paramount Bristol
The Diamonds
May 23 | Blackbird Bakery
State St. Tattoo Fest 2019
May 24–26 | Foundation Event Facility
Book Signing: Cyrus Alderwood
May 25 | Blackbird Bakery
The Swing Band
May 25 | Blackbird Bakery
Blue Mountain Saints
May 30 | Blackbird Bakery
Chris Long
May 31 | State Line Bar & Grill
John Schneider
May 31 | Paramount Bristol
Blue Mountain Saints
May 31 | Blackbird Bakery
BIG Son and Seven Mile Mushroom
June 1 | Studio Brew
Wyldeheart
June 6 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Border Bash
June 7 | Downtown Bristol
Theatre Bristol's The Wizard of Oz
June 21–30
Border Bash
June 21 | Downtown Bristol
The Allman Betts Band
June 25
Railway Express
June 29 | Quaker Steak and Lube
Border Bash
July 4 | Downtown Bristol
Border Bash
July 19 | Downtown Bristol
Border Bash
August 2 | Downtown Bristol
Tab Benoit
August 2 | Paramount Bristol
Get the Led Out
August 9 | Paramount Bristol
Railway Express
August 24 | Quaker Steak and Lube

More Upcoming Events »
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