The hardest part of being a journalist, and especially one whose core focus is music, is seeing those you were lucky enough to meet, interview and write about, pass away. Read more


Theater artist Kevin Hardesty portrays Kentucky’s most famous character in “Daniel Boone: The First Kentuckian.” Read more


Cumberland Gap—that fabled portal through the Appalachian Mountain barrier—was the passage through which arose America’s great westward movement. A quarter of a million westering settlers and more passed through that notch beginning in 1775. Read more


Make it Merlefest

Money Combs photo


Daniel Boone Crosses the Cumberland Gap

Courtesy of The State Historical Society of Missouri

As Franklin, Jefferson and Washington were enshrined as founders of the American Republic and exemplars of man in civil society, their contemporary Daniel Boone won fame at the beginning of the westward movement as a man in a state of nature. Read more


In late spring 1769, Daniel Boone, America’s pioneer hero, made his first excursion through the Cumberland Gap into the storied land of “ken-te-ke,” setting in motion America’s eventual westward movement. Read more


Photo by Dylan Langille © ontheDL Photo All Rights Reserved 201

Dylan Langille

Since 2003, Echo Mountain has remained a beacon of light for legendary musicians and bands, ranging from The Avett Brothers to Zac Brown Band, The Smashing Pumpkins to Widespread Panic. Read more


Pam Myers calls the large, container-like structure hovering at the core of the expanded Asheville Art Museum “a box within a box.” The metaphor is fitting in many ways, the museum’s executive director says. Read more


Echoes from the Valley

Copy of old print by Clair Burket.

Sarah Ransom has been working with a local Junior Appalachian Musicians group, which introduced her to Appalachian storytelling and the history. She was asked to write a fictional story based on historic events in Johnson County, Tennessee. Read more


Forget the days of stuffy museums with ropes to keep the hands of little visitors from getting too close. Today, many museums are geared for kids of all ages with interactive play, colorful exhibits, and rich opportunities for hands-on learning. Read more

Rooted in History

John Wear photo

In the remote community of Boogertown, a narrow gravel road threads its way to the end of Wilson Hollow and a farm cradled in seclusion a few miles from Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Read more


Cherokee’s new uber accessible mountain bike trail system provides recreation options for riders and hikers of all skill levels in the heart of the Smoky Mountains. Read more


The Dark Corner. The very words give one a feeling of danger, mystery, and foreboding, much like the title of one of Kentucky author Jesse Stuart’s story collections: Beyond Dark Hills. Read more

Tucked away on a wooded hillside just minutes from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Arrowmont offers a creative oasis amidst the bustle of Gatlinburg, Tennessee. Read more


The Apple Doesn't Fall Far From the Tree

Jamie Hargis photo

There’s something deeply resonant about the continuity of family farms, working the same land backward and forward in time. The heritage is particularly rich when the crops grow on trees. Read more


Big South Fork: A Land of Gorges and Arches

NPS Photo/Bill Fultz

You hike through a forest on a rolling plateau. It’s pleasantly cool in the summer with the tree canopy above. After a while, you scan the landscape and perceive an openness through the forest ahead—it can give a queasy feeling of an upcoming void. Read more


Big South Fork: Adventure Awaits

Straddling both Tennessee and Kentucky, the Big South Fork National River and Recreation Area provides visitors access to 125,000 acres with natural arches, waterfalls and a host of outdoor activities like camping, horseback riding and paddling. Read more


Abingdon is one of our favorite places to visit anywhere, and during many sojourns we’ve learned the ghostly legends. But what we didn’t know is that this is a town that sometimes seems to have more buildings haunted than not. Read more

When David Cooke started promoting a new program called Grow Appalachia to help people in Appalachian states and counties grow their own healthy produce, some residents were a bit skeptical. Read more