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September 25, 2017

Fall in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Fall is a great time to be in eastern Tennessee!  The experts are predicting a magnificent display of colors this year and the Buckhorn Inn is so convenient to the Park.  The Great Smoky Mountains National Park rangers have planned many free activities to help you enjoy the park.  Here are some of our favorites!

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park explodes with color in the fall.

Fall is a beautiful time of year in eastern Tennessee.

Evening Campfire

A ranger is available to tell stories and histories around the campfire from 7:30 to 8:30 pm in the Elkmont Campground.  The campfire program runs on Friday and Saturday evenings from September 16 through October 28.

The “Good Ol’ Days”

Walk the Mountain Farm Museum with a ranger and learn about the early settlers in this area.  The Museum is located by the Oconaluftee Visitor Center.  This event is available every Saturday at 10:30 am from September 16 through October 28.

Porters Creek Hike

Join a ranger in “our own backyard” to engage in an eye-opening exploration of how much, and how little, things have changed over the years in the Greenbrier Cove area.  The hike is conducted on Wednesdays and Saturdays.  Hikers should meet at the Porters Creek trailhead.

Fall Amble

This is one of our favorite ways to take in all the beautiful colors of fall in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.  Locations for this hike vary as the ranger will take you to the elevation where the leaves currently are at their peak.  The hikes begin at 10:30 and are classified as moderately difficult.  This hike is available on Sundays and Wednesdays from September 17 through October 25.

School Days at Little Greenbrier

Discover what it was like to live in a mountain community and to attend a one-room school house.  This trip back in time happens every Tuesday through October 24 at 11 am and 2 pm.  Meet at the Little Greenbrier Schoolhouse near the Metcalf Bottoms picnic area.

All of these events, and many more, are detailed at the National Park Service website.  Please visit http://www.nps.gov/grsm/planyourvisit/calendar.  We look forward to seeing you this fall!

 

September 11, 2017

Black-eyed Pea Soup is Perfect for Fall!

A hearty soup is perfect for fall, whether you are tailgating or relaxing after an afternoon of raking leaves.  This soup is a Buckhorn Inn favorite and we are happy to share it with you.

This soup is delicious and packs a nutritious punch.

Black-eyed peas star in this flavorful soup.

Black-eyed Pea and Collards Soup

In a stockpot, bring to a boil:

1 lb. dried black-eyed peas

3 qts chicken stock

3 ribs diced celery

1 diced onion

2 cloves minced garlic

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tbl chopped parsley

2 bay leaves

1 tsp black pepper

Slowly boil until the peas are just tender.  Then add:

12 ozs fresh or frozen chopped collards

Salt to taste

1 cup diced cooked ham or 1/2 cup cooked and crumbled bacon

Continue to cook until the peas are tender, adding more stock if necessary.  Taste and correct seasonings.  Some of our guests enjoy this soup with hot pepper-flavored vinegar or other hot sauce.  Cornbread makes a wonderful accompaniment.  This recipe makes 12 servings.

Black-Eyed Peas are Popular Throughout the South

The legume was introduced to the Southern U.S. as early as the 17th century.  George Washington Carver was a proponent of planting the crop as it puts nitrogen back into the soil and is densely nutritious.  The peas contain calcium, folate, protein, fiber, and vitamin A–all for less than 200 calories a cup!  The blossoms produce nectar and attract bees and other pollinators.

A black-eyed pea soup such as this one often is served on New Year’s Day as it is thought to bring prosperity in the coming year.  The peas swell when they cook, thus symbolizing prosperity.  The greens represent money.  Because of the rooting style of pigs, pork products are thought to symbolize forward motion.  And serving this dish with cornbread (symbolizing gold) must guarantee success in this New Year!

Some say that when General Sherman marched his Union Army to the sea during the Civil War they pillaged the Confederate food supply.  They left behind, though, the dried peas and salt port as they thought these foodstuffs not fit for human consumption.  The Southerners considered themselves fortunate to have this food left behind to see them through, and this may be how the peas first became associated with good luck in the United States.

For more black-eyed pea recipes and cooking tips, visit the Southern Living website http://www.southernliving.com/side-dishes/how-to-cook-black-eyed-peas

Happy fall, y’all!

 

September 4, 2017

Buckhorn Neighbor: G Webb Gallery

One of our favorite depictions of the Buckhorn Inn is by our neighbor, G Webb.

Our neighbor, G Webb, created this lovely picture of the Buckhorn.

Prints of “Buckhorn Inn” are available in our gift shop.

The painting captures the timeless charm of the Inn, and includes our beautiful views.  

The G Webb Gallery is on Buckhorn Road

Virginia born, G Webb grew up in Nashville, TN.  By age 10 he already was an avid painter.  In 1971 he opened his first gallery in Murfreesboro, TN.  However, once he began painting the beautiful mountain scenery in east Tennessee, he knew he was “home”.   His scenic watercolors convey a sense of the serenity he feels in this part of the country.  G’s work focuses on landscapes, mountainscapes, mountain heritage, and historical sites.  G and his wife Vickie are the proud parents of Cami Monet, a talented water colour artist in her own right.  Their gallery on Buckhorn Road showcases the art of both father and daughter.  You can find more details at http://www.gwebbgallery.com.  Both original watercolors and limited edition lithographs are available at the gallery.

What is a Lithograph?

Lithography was invited in 1796 by the Alois Senefelder in Bavaria.  Essentially, an oil-based image is put on the surface of a smooth sheet of limestone.  Then a gum Arabic solution is applied to the surface.  The solution only sticks to the non-oily surface.  During printing, water is attracted to the gum Arabic parts and repelled by the oily surfaces.  The oily ink used for printing does the opposite.  A refined method of this technique is still used for fine art prints today.  The process for fine-art prints was enhanced around 1816 and was used by such artists as Delacroix in the 1820’s.  Goya produced his last series by lithography and during the 1870’s such artists as Degas began producing most of their art by lithography.

The G Webb Gallery is on Buckhorn Road, a short distance from the Buckhorn Inn.  They are a proud member of the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community.  The next time you visit us, we encourage you to spend an afternoon exploring the 8-mile craft loop.  We have maps showing the locations of some of our favorite artist galleries and artisan shops.