What is Nashville's cultural scene like?

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While Nashville is best known as Music City, USA, and the home of country music, it has experienced growth in the other area’s of its culture in recent years, too. With the opening of the state-of-the-art Schermerhorn Center in 2006, the Nashville Symphony gained a beautiful permanent home in downtown. The Tennessee Performing Arts Center continues to host traveling Broadway shows as well as performances by the Nashville Ballet, Nashville Opera and Tennessee Repertory Theatre.

Nashville’s growing arts scene is anchored by the Frist Center for the Visual Arts and given energy by art districts like Fifth Avenue of the Arts, where galleries are clustered around downtown Nashville’s Fifth Avenue, and by events like the First Saturday Art Crawl, which has been introducing locals and visitors to new artists for more than five years. Nashville also boasts a growing culinary arts scene, with more and more chef-driven restaurants and a vibrant slow food and local food movement.

  • On July 21, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    Where is the best pizza in Nashville?

    Nashville has plenty of great pizza, and in the last few years, the number of gourmet options has increased dramatically. 

    If you're looking for something classic and Italian—try Coco's Italian Market. Since 1965, the same family has owned and operated the restaurant. And even though it's located far outside the city center, it's worth it for the hand-tossed margherita pizza.

    Another great option in East Nashville's 5-points district is Five Points Pizza. Try the meatball pizza or my favorite, the Olde World, and you won't be dissapointed. Also, bring your own bottle of wine to enjoy. There's a small corkage fee, but otherwise you're choices will be limited to cold, draft beer. 

    If you're interested in something more gourmet, head on over to City House, where Chef Tandy Wilson whips up daily personal-sized pizzas that are affordable and creative. One of the most popular pizzas features belly Ham, mozzarella, and chilies, while a summer special is topped with peaches, cheddar, and red onion. 

    Happy Slices!


  • On July 18, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What is the best new restaurant in Nashville?

    Undoubtedly, the best (and most highly anticipated) new restaurant in Nashville is Husk. The Neighborhood Dining Group and James Beard Award Winning Chef Sean Brock scouted out the Rutledge Hill location for the newest outpost of Husk, which originated in Charleston. And much like it's older coastal brother, Husk Nashville features the best southern ingredients from around the region, including catfish, local vegetables and lettuces, roasted bone marrow.

    The mission of the restaurant is to explore the reality of Southern food—not to redifine or rediscover it. Reservations can be hard to come by—so plan ahead! 
  • On July 15, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best places to buy shoes in Nashville?

    One of my favorite things to do while traveling is to take an old pair of shoes on the trip that are begging to be retired. Then, while traveling—you have a purpose behind your shopping—to find that perfect shoe replacement! While in Nashville... you'll have plenty of shoe-shopping options to choose from, though unfortunately, they aren't located in one central location. If you're hunting for shoes, make sure to have a car to bop from one place to the next.

    The Perfect Pair Nashville is a local favorite for vintage and new shoe finds, with a wide range of price points. If you're looking for high-end leather designer shoes, look no further than Peter Nappi, whose warehouse workspace has been featured in too many magazines to list. (Plus, the warehouse is so beautiful, you might just want to add it to your "places to see" list in Nashville). If you're looking for something a little more affordable, you might enjoy a trip out to Opry Mills Mall, where several factory and outlet stores (J.Crew, Saks off 5th, Cole Haan) make the prices worth the trip. Another good option is Posh, a boutique located both in Green Hills and in Hillsboro Village. 

    Happy shopping! 
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  • On July 12, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best day trips near Nashville?

    While there's plenty to do in and around Nashville proper, there's something fun about hitting the road and seeing something that's off the beaten path. If you're looking for a day-trip from Nashville, look no further than the following: 

    1. Arrington Vineyards- located less than an hour's drive away from Nashville, in Arrington, Tenn., this vineyard is the handywork of Kix Brooks, half of the iconic country duo, Brooks & Dunn. Along with winemaker Kip Summers and entrepreneur, John Russell, Brooks is making a new kind of music with his bold vintages, including a Petite Noir, Syrah, Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Savignon, among others. Pack a picnic and head to the hill, which overlooks the vineyard valley. At times there's live music, and there's always wine for sale in the main house. Bring a wine key!

    2. Leipers Fork - for a fun day in the country, head southwest from Nashville on the Natchez Trace Parkway, until you reach Lepiers Fork, a small town with big personality. Stop in for lunch (or late night live music) at the original Puckett's Grocery, and don't miss Serenite Maison, for antiques and other household treasures. 

    3. Jack Daniel's DistilleryIf you're looking for something to warm your belly, take an hour drive to Lynchburg, the site of Jack Daniel's famous whiskey distillery. Though it was famed for its location in a dry county, thanks to a small 2012 change in legislation, visitors can enjoy a Jack Daniels tasting right on the premises. 

    4. Virgin Falls - Located just east of Sparta, TN, Virgin Falls offers over 1,000 acres of natural beauty to hikers and campers. The trail, which is well marked from the parking lot, takes 5 to 8 hours, depending on your pace. But if you're feelign more adventurous, hike in with a tent and a few supplies—you can almost always find a camping spot just near the falls, and sleep next to the roaring sound of waters in the middle of Tennessee. 

    Happy travels!
  • On July 12, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best day trips near Nashville?

    While there's plenty to do in and around Nashville proper, there's something fun about hitting the road and seeing something that's off the beaten path. If you're looking for a day-trip from Nashville, look no further than the following: 

    1. Arrington Vineyards- located less than an hour's drive away from Nashville, in Arrington, Tenn., this vineyard is the handywork of Kix Brooks, half of the iconic country duo, Brooks & Dunn. Along with winemaker Kip Summers and entrepreneur, John Russell, Brooks is making a new kind of music with his bold vintages, including a Petite Noir, Syrah, Merlot, Chardonnay, Cabernet Savignon, among others. Pack a picnic and head to the hill, which overlooks the vineyard valley. At times there's live music, and there's always wine for sale in the main house. Bring a cork!

    2. Leipers Fork - for a fun day in the country, head southwest from Nashville on the Natchez Trace Parkway, until you reach Lepiers Fork, a small town with big personality. Stop in for lunch (or late night live music) at the original Puckett's Grocery, and don't miss Serenite Maison, for antiques and other household treasures. 

    3. Jack Daniel's DistilleryIf you're looking for something to warm your belly, take an hour drive to Lynchburg, the site of Jack Daniel's famous whiskey distillery. Though it was famed for its location in a dry county, thanks to a small 2012 change in legislation, visitors can enjoy a Jack Daniels tasting right on the premises. 


    4. Virgin Falls - Located just east of Sparta, TN, Virgin Falls offers over 1,000 acres of natural beauty to hikers and campers. The trail, which is well marked from the parking lot, takes 5 to 8 hours, depending on your pace. But if you're feelign more adventurous, hike in with a tent and a few supplies—you can almost always find a camping spot just near the falls, and sleep next to the roaring sound of waters in the middle of Tennessee. 

    Happy travels!
  • On July 6, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the hottest upcoming concerts in Nashville?

    Nashville always has a wealth of concerts, especially during the summer and fall, two of the best seasons for live music. Whether its the underground tunes of lesser-known bands, or the major headliners that sell out in minutes, there are a few major names coming to town this year that you won't want to miss:

    Imagine Dragons - July 17, 2013 at the Woods at Fontanel

    Jason Isbell with Caitlin Rose - August 17, 2013, Ryman Auditorium. 

    Sigor Ròs -  September 27, 2013, The Woods at Fontanel

    Iron and Wine  - October 10, 2013, Ryman Auditorium. 

    The Lumineers - October 12, 13, and 14, at Ryman Auditorium. 

    If you're too late to get tickets, make sure check out the best places to hear live music at the last minute
  • On July 3, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best events this weekend in Nashville?

    This year, Independence Day falls on a Thursday, which means that the festivities will last all weekend long. If you happen to be in Nashville, you're in luck!  There are so many events to choose from, you just can't go wrong.

    The Thirth- Every year on the "Thirth" of July, East Nashville shuts down for a block party of national proportions. A $15 cover charge gets you access to bands, beer, and plenty of neighborly fun. (Wednesday, July 3rd, from 5 p.m. to midnight) 

    Hot Chicken FestivalEvery year on July 4, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Nashville hosts the Music City Hot Chicken Festival. Though some years, the temperatures rival the chicken in terms of heat, you can bet on leaving the festival having sweat through at least one layer of clothing. If you can't make it to the festival, make sure to try some hot chicken while you're in Nashville. 

    Riverfront July 4th Celebration - Free to the public and open all day, Nashville's downtown events will start at 7 p.m., with music featuring Keb' Mo', and the Band Perry. The 26-minute fireworks display, accompanied by a performance by the Nashville Symphony is scheduled for 9:50 p.m., and will light up 14,000 lbs of fireworks over the Cumberland River.  

    July 4th 5k and 10 to Support the Salvation Army- Before you head out to a barbeque, burn a few calories for a good cause with the Music City July 4th 5k and 10k. Starting at 7:30 a.m., the racecourse traverses Nashville's downtown area, and crosses the Cumberland River twice. 

  • On July 3, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best events this weekend in Nashville?

    This year, Independence Day falls on a Thursday, which means that the festivities will last all weekend long. If you happen to be in Nashville, you're in luck!  There are so many events to choose from, you just can't go wrong.

    Hot Chicken FestivalEvery year on July 4, from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Nashville hosts the Music City Hot Chicken Festival. Though some years, the temperatures rival the chicken in terms of heat, you can bet on leaving the festival having sweat through at least one layer of clothing. If you can't make it to the festival, make sure to try some hot chicken while you're in Nashville. 

    Riverfront July 4th Celebration - Free to the public and open all day, Nashville's downtown events will start at 7 p.m., with music featuring Keb' Mo', and the Band Perry. The 26-minute fireworks display, accompanied by a performance by the Nashville Symphony is scheduled for 9:50 p.m., and will light up 14,000 lbs of fireworks over the Cumberland River.  

    July 4th 5k and 10 to Support the Salvation Army- Before you head out to a barbeque, burn a few calories for a good cause with the Music City July 4th 5k and 10k. Starting at 7:30 a.m., the racecourse traverses Nashville's downtown area, and crosses the Cumberland River twice. 

  • On July 1, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What is the one must-do activity in Nashville?

    If you're coming all the way to Nashville, and you can only do one thing, I feel sorry for you. Although I'm sure I'm going to make plenty of enemies in Nashville by answering this question (because here is SO MUCH worth seeing, doing, and eating in Nashville)— I do have an answer.

    The one must-do activity in Nashville is walking down Broadway at night, hearing the twangy songs of wannabe songsters and songstresses, and enjoying the views of the Cumberland River. While you walk, keep your eyes peeled for Roberts' Western World. By far, it is the most authentic honky-tonk downtown, and the one where that locals and tourists intermingle to do the two-step. The party really gets hopping around 10 p.m., so make sure to bring your dancing shoes! 
  • On July 1, 2013
    Claire Gibson answered the question: Claire Gibson

    What are the best hair salons in Nashville?

    If you're looking to freshen up your 'do while in Nashville... you'll have plenty of options! 

    For an incredible cut and style experience, look no further than Parlour & Juke. Barber Shop by day and music venue by night, this spot has been featured in Vogue, GQ, and Garden & Gun magazines. It's full of Nashville spirit, great music, and cutting-edge stylists, like owner Cali DeVaney, who prides her salon on being a place where men and women can both feel at home. 

    If you're looking for a salon that focuses solely on style—check out the Blowout Co., with two locations—one on White Bridge Road, and one in Brentwood, just fifteen minutes outside of Downtown Nashville. The Blowout Co. is one of Nashville's only style-only salons, and has a staff of highly trained stylists that will treat you to a luxury experience.


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