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REGIONAL CALENDAR OF EVENTS
See full calendar of Regional Events listing at www.facebook.com/historicsullivan.
Planning to host an event in Historic Blountville? Get your event promoted and listed on our social media sites by filling out the official Event Registration Form. Email info@sullivancountytn.gov for a copy of the form.

SPECIAL NOTE - Please verify event dates and times with each of our tourism partners to ensure that any given event will take place and that there have been no recent cancellations.

 

MAR. 8, 2021 - "America's Buried History: Landmines in the Civil War", 7pm, Mar. 8, presented by Historian and Author, Ken Rutherford, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. After sharing Nobel Prize, Ken Rutherford wrote a history of Civil War explosive devices. On December 16, 1993, in war-torn Somalia, he was a victim of a land mine. The former University of Colorado football player paid an awful price: His legs were amputated—the lower right leg in Kenya that day, the lower left in the United States in 1997. He now is a professor at JMU in Virginia. Despite the thousands of books published on the American Civil War, one aspect that has never received the in-depth attention it deserves is the use of landmines and their effect on the war and beyond. Kenneth R. Rutherford rectifies this oversight with America’s Buried History: Landmines in the Civil War, the first book devoted to a comprehensive analysis and history of the fascinating and important topic of landmines. Modern mechanically fused high explosive and victim-activated landmines were used for the first time in the world’s history on a widespread basis in the American Civil War. The first American to die from a victim-activated landmine was on the Virginia peninsula in early 1862 during the siege of Yorktown. The controversial weapon, which was concealed on or beneath the ground, was built for one purpose: to kill or maim enemy troops. The weapon was the brainchild of Confederate General Gabriel J. Rains, who had experimented with explosive booby traps in Florida two decades earlier during the Seminole Wars. By the end of the war in 1865, some 2,000 “Rains mines” had been built and deployed in the field around Richmond. Simultaneously, other Confederate officers and soldiers also developed a sundry of landmine varieties, including command controlled and victim activated, across the Confederacy. The Confederacy abandoned common practices in favor of innovative approaches that would help them overcome the significant deficits in materiel and manpower. The South’s reliance on these weapons pushed the limits of nineteenth century technology against a backdrop of a deteriorating military situation, setting off explosive debates inside the Confederate government and within the ranks of the army over the ethics of using “weapons that wait.” As the Confederacy’s fortune dissipated, its military leaders sought creative ways to fight, including leveraging low-cost weapons with minimal material inputs. This became an important factor in the increased support and attention landmines received from Confederate leaders. As the Civil War progressed, Southern military men continued to develop landmines with technological ingenuity adapted to local circumstances. Confederate soldiers manufactured landmines and also configured spur-of-the-moment landmines in a relatively ad hoc manner, often recycling unexploded Union ammunition. These debates over the ethics of mine warfare did not end in 1865. Dr. Rutherford, who is known worldwide for his decades of work in the landmine discipline, brings together primary and other research from archives, museums, and battlefields to demonstrate that the Civil War was the first military conflict in world history to see the widespread use of such weapons. His study contributes to the literature on one of the most fundamental, contentious, and significant modern conventional weapons. According to careful estimates, by the early 1990s, landmines were responsible for more than 26,000 deaths each year worldwide. America’s Buried History traces the development of landmines from their first use before the Civil War, to the early use of naval mines, through the establishment of the Confederacy’s Army Torpedo Bureau, the world’s first institution devoted to developing, producing, and fielding mines in warfare. As Dr. Rutherford demonstrates, landmines transitioned from “tools of cowards” and “offenses against democracy and civilized warfare” to an accepted form of warfare. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.
ABOUT THE PRESENTER
Ken Rutherford began his international career in Africa as a Peace Corps volunteer in Mauritania, with the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees in Senegal, and as a  humanitarian relief officer in Kenya and Somalia.   In 1993, he worked as a humanitarian relief officer in Somalia, where he was injured by a landmine. After a medical evacuation during which he nearly bled to death, one leg was amputated to save his life and the second one amputated several years later. He has since spoken to the United States Congress against landmines. "It was an experience that fundamentally altered my life for the good," Rutherford said. "It crystallized my vision of what I believe I was put on this Earth to do."
He co-founded the Landmine Survivors Network and escorted Princess Diana on her last humanitarian mission to visit landmine survivors in Bosnia-Herzegovina in August 1997, only three weeks before her death. Rutherford was a prominent leader in the International Campaign to Ban Landmines, which won the 1997 Nobel Peace Prize.  In 2005, Rutherford went to Jordan on a Fulbright Fellowship where he was appointed to the faculty at the University of Jordan and taught politics and researched disability rights. In 2006, he participated at the UN in New York City for the adoption for the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, and in 2008 played a key role in the drafting of the Convention on Cluster Munitions that forever banned that category of weapons.  He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the congressionally mandated Shenandoah Valley Battlefields Foundation, which preserves and interprets the region’s significant Civil War battlefields and related historic sites. He also serves on the board of directors of Friendship Industries, which is the largest employer of people with disabilities in the Shenandoah Valley and the Doris M. Case Foundation that focuses on supporting conflict survivors in Colombia.  Rutherford has published in numerous academic and policy journals, including the Journal of International Law and Policy, World Politics and the Journal of International Politics.
He has published five books, including Humanitarianism Under Fire: The U.S. and U.N. Intervention in Somalia, Disarming States: The International Movement to Ban Landmines, and America’s Buried History: Landmines in the Civil War. Rutherford is the recipient of the Leadership in International Rehabilitation Award presented by   Northwestern University, the Marshall Legacy Institute's Survivors' Assistance Award, the United Airlines Everyday Hero Award, the Humanitarian Award from the UN Association of the USA Adopt-A-Minefield program presented by Paul McCartney, the Human Security Person of the Year Award from the University of California-Irvine, and the Global Citizen of the Year from Roots of Peace. He has presented in more than 35 countries, testified before U.S. Congress and the United Nations in Geneva, New York and Vienna.  Rutherford was a featured guest on Oprah and profiled in The Reader’s Digest. He has also appeared on television, including  CNN, Sunday Morning (CBS), Dateline (NBC) Nightline (ABC), The View (ABC), and the BBC’s television series “999,” and radio, including The BBC and NPR’s Morning Edition and All Things Considered. In 2013, he was included among the "one hundred most influential people in armed violence reduction" by the London-based organization Action on Armed Violence.  He holds a Ph.D. in Government from Georgetown University, and B.A. and MBA degrees from the University of Colorado, where he lettered in football as a walk-on nose guard, and inducted into its Hall for Distinguished alumni. He is married with five children and lives in Harrisonburg, Virginia. 

 

MAR. 18, 2021 - Frog Watch at Jacob's Nature Park
Are you ready for the sounds of Spring? Warriors Path State Park invites you to a Frog Watch @ Jacob's Nature Park Will Spring Peepers, Pickerel Frogs or Chorus Frogs be singing at Jacob's Nature Park? It Depends on the temperature, wind, humidity and whims of the frogs. Regardless, enjoy a night time stroll with the sounds in the dark. March 18th, 7 pm - 9:30 pm, $3 per person. For more information: www.tnstateparks.com/events, or call Marty Silver 423-239-6786

MAR. 23, 2021 - Cody Jinks, 7pm, Tues., Mar. 23, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

MAR. 24, 2021 - Cody Jinks, 7pm, Wed., Mar. 24, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

MAR. 26, 2021 - Golden Dragon Acrobats, 7pm, Fri., Mar. 26, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

GOLDEN DRAGON ACROBATS at PARAMOUNT BRISTOL
March 26, 2021 at 8pm
NASCAR fans – if you are spending the day at the Bristol Motor Speedway, bring the whole family to historic downtown Bristol for dinner and a show that’s perfect for the whole family!
This renowned troupe continues the centuries-old Chinese traditions of acrobatics, athleticism and artistry. World renowned impresario Danny Chang and choreographer Angela Chang combine award-winning acrobatics, traditional dance, spectacular costumes, ancient and contemporary music and theatrical techniques to present a show of breathtaking skill and spellbinding beauty.

APR. 3, 2021 - Bela Fleck & the Flecktones, 7pm, Sat., Apr. 3, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

APR. 12, 2021 - "Baptism of Fire: Three Green Regiments in the Maelstrom of Franklin", 7pm, Apr. 12, presented by Historian and Author, Eric Jacobson, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

APR. 15, 2021 - Triumphant Quartet, 7pm, Sat., May 8, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

APR. 16, 2021 - BoDeans, 7pm, Sat., Apr. 3, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

MAY 1-2, 2021 - Spring Garden Fair at Exchange Place - Cancelled
Kingsport, TN – Spring is normally the season of hope, of growth, of renewal.  We say goodbye to the darkness of winter and hello to vibrant colors.  In Northeast Tennessee and Southwest Virginia, Kingsport’s Living History Farm, Exchange Place, has ushered in the season with its Spring Garden Fair, an event that has been eagerly awaited by amateur gardeners for more than three decades.  The festival was cancelled last year by COVID-19, but we were very hopeful that it would be resumed in 2021.  However, after consulting personnel from the Health Department and the Department of Agriculture, who strongly discouraged the scheduling of even outdoor events in April, it is with heavy hearts that the Exchange Place Steering Committee has voted not to hold the 2021 Spring Garden Fair. We want to do our part to keep our community, and our volunteers, safe and healthy.  We are, of course, sad and disappointed not to be able to welcome everyone back this year.  We were anticipating watching people happily roaming about the farm, interacting with our animals (and seeing the sheep get shorn!), watching our many demonstrations of 19th century skills, visiting the Burow Museum, listening to a full slate of popular local and regional musicians, dancing around the Maypole, and taking part in so many of the other activities that make the Spring Garden Fair at Exchange Place one of the year’s most anticipated events.  We hope we will be able to gather again in 2022; please mark your calendars for the Spring Garden Fair on April 30 and May 1, 2022. A final decision on our other 2021 festivals will be made closer to the dates, when we will be better able to assess the health of the region.  The Fall Folk Arts Festival is tentatively scheduled for Saturday and Sunday, September 25-26, while Christmas in the Country is slated for Saturday, December 4.

MAY 10, 2021 - "Remembering the Civil War: Reunion and the Limits of Reconciliation", 7pm, May 10, presented by Historian and Author, Caroline Janney, Director of the John L. Nau III, Director of Center for Civil War History UVA, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

JUN 17, 2021 - Trace Adkins, 7pm, Thu., Jun 17, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

JUN 25, 2021 - Sebastian Bach, 7pm, Jun 25, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

JUL. 4, 2021 - Blountville Ruritan Annual Independence Day Parade, 2pm, Sun., July 4, hosted by the Blountville Ruritan, downtown Historic District, Blountville, TN. For further information, please call 423.323.4660.

JUL 12, 2021 - "Sam Watkins, Company Aytch", 7pm, Jul. 12, a first person, 2-act drama, presented by Living Historian, Thomas Cartwright, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

AUG. 13, 2021 - The Gatlin Brothers, 7pm, Fri., Aug. 13, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

SEP 3, 2021 - RUMOURS: The Ultimate Fleetwood Mac Tribute Show, 7pm, Fri., Sep. 3, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

Sep. 11, 2021 - 13th ANNUAL HISTORIC BLOUNTVILLE HERITAGE FESTIVAL, hosted by the Sullivan County Department of Archives and Tourism, downtown Historic District, Blountville, TN. For additional information, please contact Shelia Hunt.

SEP. 13, 2021 - "Jacob Cox: The Man, The Major General and the Historian", 7pm, Sep. 13, presented by Historian and Author, Gene Schmiel, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

Sep. 24-26, 2021 - BATTLE OF BLOUNTVILLE CIVIL WAR REENACTMENT, a special 3-day living history event hosted by the Department of East Tennessee Reenacting, the Battle of Blountville Civil War Military Park, and the Sullivan County Department of Archives and Tourism. Event will be held at the beautiful Old Hawley Farm, 1173 Hawley Road, Blountville, TN 37617. Details to be announced. For additional information, please contact Shelia Hunt.

SEP 26, 2021 - An Evening with Amy Grant, Sun., Sep. 26, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

OCT. 2, 2021 - The Black Jacket Symphony: Pink Floyd's The Wall, 7pm, Sat., Oct. 2, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

OCT. 9, 2021 - Diamond Rio, 7pm, Sat., Oct. 9, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

OCT. 11, 2021 - "JEB Stuart's Mortal Wounding at Yellow Tavern and the Impact on the Army of Northern Virginia", 7pm, Oct. 11, presented by Historian and Author, Gordon Rhea, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

OCT. 15, 2021 - Josh Turner, 7pm, Fri., Oct. 15, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

NOV. 8, 2021 - "Antietam Shadows: Mystery, Myth, and Machination", 7pm, Nov. 8, presented by Historian and Author, Dennis Frye, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

NOV. 16, 2021 - The Robert Gray Band, 7pm, Tues., Nov. 16, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

DEC. 5, 2021 - Sara Evans, Sun., Dec. 5, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

Dec. 9, 2021 - HISTORIC BLOUNTVILLE ANNUAL CHRISTMAS TREE LIGHTING, 6pm, Thurs., Dec. 9, hosted by the Sullivan County Department of Archives and Tourism, downtown Historic District, Blountville, TN. For additional information, please contact Shelia Hunt.

DEC. 11, 2021 - Blountville Ruritan Annual Christmas Parade, 2pm, Sat., Dec. 11, hosted by the Blountville Ruritan, downtown Historic District, Blountville, TN. For further information, please call 423.323.4660.

DEC. 12, 2021 - Ronnie Milsap, Sun., Dec. 12, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

JAN. 17, 2022 - Lecture presented by Jim Ogden, Chief Historian at Chickamauga & Chattanooga National Park, 7pm, Jan. 17, hosted by the Tri-Cities Civil War Round Table, Renaissance Center Theater, 1200 E. Center St., Kingsport, TN. For further information, please contact Wayne Strong.

JAN. 21, 2021 - An Evening with Leo Kottke, 7pm, Fri., Jan. 21, Paramount Bristol, 518 State St., Bristol, TN 37620. For additional information, please call (423) 274-8920.

 

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ONGOING EVENTS

  • Antique Car Show, Friday nights, 6 PM to 8 PM, May thru October, TriSummit Bank parking lot across from the train station in downtown Bristol. Info at 423.646.7780.
  • Blountville Farmers Market, 12 Noon, each Thurs., April through October, located behind the old Sullivan County Courthouse at Blountville. Info at 423.323.4660.
  • Cooper's Gem Mine, 11 AM to 5 PM Monday through Friday, and 12 Noon to 5 PM on Saturdays, from the 1st of April through October 31. For group tours and information, please call (423) 323-5680. Beginning in October 2015, an online store will be available at coopersgemmine.com and will include natural artifacts.
  • Sullivan County Historical and Genealogical Society meets bimonthly at 7PM, 3rd Thursday evening of each month,Sullivan County Department of Archives & Tourism, downtown Blountville. Free admission. General public is cordially invited. (423) 323-4660.
  • Sons of the Confederate Veterans, John Singleton Mosby Camp #1409, meets at 6PM, 4th Monday of each month, Mama's House Buffet, John B. Dennis Parkway, Kingsport, TN.
  • Sons of Confederate Veterans, Lt. Stephen Powell Camp, meets at 7PM, 3rd Monday of each month, 2nd Floor Commission Room, Sullivan County Courthouse, Blountville.
  • Netherland Inn, Open Saturday and Sunday - May through October. Hours: 2p.m. to 4p.m. Admission: Adults $4.00 and age 6 and under $1.00. Group Tours: April through October by appointment- School, Civic and Church Groups Welcome!
  • Old Deery Inn and Museum. Step back in time as you visit this lovely hidden gem in downtown Historic Blountville! Tours include rooms of beautiful antiques inside the 2-story inn, and visitors will also enjoy seeing the dependency buildings including the old brick kitchen, slave quarters, blacksmith shop and more! A must-see for early Tennessee history! Tickets are $5 per person; children under 12 are $3. (423) 323-4660.
  • Bristol Farmers Market, May 1 thru October 31, Saturdays 7 AM to Noon, and Wednesdays 3 PM to 7 PM.
  • Sullivan County Preservation Association, 3rd Thursday of each month, 7pm, Community Center at Blountville.
  • Kingsport Farmers Market, 7 AM to 1 PM, Wednesdays and Saturdays, corner of Clinchfield and Center Streets. Info at 423.246.6550.
  • TAMHA Traditional Appalachian Music Heritage Association holds jam sessions at 6PM every Friday at the Anderson Townhouse in historic downtown Blountville. Jams are also held from 2-4 PM at the Bristol Tennessee Welcome Center on the 2nd Saturday of the month. Free and open to the general public.
  • Appalachian Ghostwalks, ongoing daily/nightly tours. Reservations required. Interested parties should call (423) 743-WALK (9255) for reservations.

         

 

GET YOUR EVENT LISTED HERE! To have your event listed with us, email us or call (423) 323-4660.


 

 

 

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