Monday, December 13, 2010

Photo Dump: WDVX Blue Plate Special

Since I was downtown today, I headed over to the Knoxville Visitors Center for lunch. Our local, non-NPR public radio station, WDVX has a live show every weekday at noon. I've been listening to WDVX for years, but this is the first time I've been able to be there for one of these shows.

I didn't catch any of the acts names, and in any case the second act was comprised of local musicians from different bands, who live downtown, and filled in at the last minute when the snow kept the scheduled guests from playing. They played old-timey bluegrass covers. It was excellent.

If you come visit me in Knoxville we should stop in to catch a show.

Snow Day

The Knoxville area doesn't usually get a lot of snow, so when we got a few inches yesterday and today, it shut down most of the city.

These first few photos are from Sunday, it's pretty tame by Wisconsin, or Montreal standards:

This morning I took a quick walk around downtown Knoxville and took these photos.

Here's a guy using a broom to clear the sidewalk in front of a grocery store in the Old City. I suppose most people around here don't have snow shovels.

This outdoor seating area at the Crown and Goose pub is protected from the wind, so this probably gives a good measure of how much snow we got.

If you look closely, you'll see a sprinkling of snow on top of the Sunsphere.

Here's Rachmaninoff's statue covered with snow.

The above train tracks run north-south and separate downtown from the University of Tennessee student ghetto aka Fort Sanders; in these next photos the train tracks run east-west and mark the northern end of downtown.

On the left side of the next two photos you can see the historic Southern Railway passenger station. This used to be one of Knoxville's busiest areas (that link goes to a document describing the history of the neighbourhood just north of the station), now the station is mostly empty, and Depot Ave. sees very little traffic. Caught just north of downtown, and just south of the interstate, and in the triangular region between Central and Broadway, this part of town is not particularly nice. The Greyhound station is a block northeast, and that area has been known in the past as for prostitution problems.

Prostitution in Knoxville

On Saturday I drove around north Knoxville. It's not an area I know well, but there are several interesting businesses up there, so I thought it would be fun to explore.

It was fun, but I also saw some prostitution in action on north Central street, not too far from downtown, near the Knoxville National Cemetery, and my favourite local cupcake shop, Magpies.

Here's how they work, apparently: This woman probably just sits at a busstop all day, then when someone stops at the stoplight, she sashays across the street in front of them, trying to make eye contact with the drivers. She was like 35, not in good shape physically, and wearing surprisingly frumpy clothes. It was pretty depressing.

On a related note; if you're move to Knoxville I recommend not living in the area west of Central, and east of I-75.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Photo Dump: Chili Cook-Off, Farmer's Market, Birds, Roller Derby, Football

My friend J and I went to the 5th Annual East Tennessee Chili Cook-Off about a month ago.

I didn't really take any good photos, but in this one you can sort of see the chili stands on the left.

There was so much chili that we left for a couple of hours and came back for a second helping. We managed to taste 17 of the 22 chili's.


Knoxville has a pretty great Farmer's Market. Sometimes they also have other events in Krutch park at the same time: they've had a biscuit festival, some sort of history fair... A few weeks ago they had this:

I never really found out what was going on, but it seemed like fun.


In the evenings in the fall you can often see a huge flock of birds flying from tree to tree, in downtown Knoxville, and then sometimes just swerving through the sky.

That's them in the bottom right part of this photo.


A few months ago I went to see the roller derby just a few blocks east of downtown.

It was interesting.


I went to a Vols game, Neyland stadium fits about 20,000 more fans than Camp Randall.

Photo Dump: Ijams Nature Center

Ijams is a park in south Knoxville that recently expanded to add two old quarries.

I visited on the day that the new trails were officially opened.

They also have some new biking trails that I'll eventually check out.