Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Cosby in the Park - Perfect weather and fun was had by all in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Cosby section of the Great Smoky Mountains national park was the place to be this past weekend with perfect weather, great music, events for the kids, demonstrations by local craftsman, story telling, guided hikes in the park and a little bit of local history.

Every event I attend in the park I become more impressed with the fine people in the park service as well as the incredible care and dedication of the thousands of volunteers who give their time to this very specials place.

After the local old time music 2 piece group named The Lost Mill String Band offered up so fun and foot tapping music at the Cosby amphitheater, there was a dedication to Mr. Grady Webb one of Cosby's long time residents of the with deep roots in the community who served the national park service for many years. He received this honor from Dale Ditmanson the supervisor of the Great Smoky Mountains national park and the Iliff McMahan Jr. the Cocke County Mayor.

After the dedication the Boogertown Gap Band played more old style music and while demonstrating old time dancing during what could only be described as a picture perfect day.

With so much going on between the picnic grounds and well as the amphitheater I found myself running back and forth and to hear the sound of music which walking along the nature trail with the winds in the trees and the sound of rushing water was so magical and precious.

dedication to Mr. Webb

Kids were enjoying crafts, demonstrations and sack races by the picnic grounds and it looked to me as if the volunteers were having as great a time as the children were.

kids at Cosby in the Park

Jordan Costner and some of his relatives we there at the pavilion with a display of items and memorabilia about their ancestor Ella V. Costner known as the Poet Laureate of the Smokies. Jordan gave a fine reading and described in detail the life of this wonderful lady of the Cosby area of the Smoky Mountains. After a ready he and the rest of the Costner family posed for the group picture below.

Costner family

After the reading we took a leisurely 2 mile hike to her grave site which is just off of the Snake Den Ridge Hiking Trail being led by one of the shining stars of the Sugarlands Visitor Center Pam Rodgers. Some of Ella V. Costner's relatives also joined us on this hike making it even more special.

Upon returning back from this glorious jaunt in the woods we got to listen to 2 more bands David McClary and friends followed by Curtis and Lynn Osteen.

While I anticipated great music and southern style cooking in a beautiful setting, the surprise of the day was Faye Wooden with her fantastic Story Telling. The ease in which she slipped into characters and the style, grace and pace of her stories were captivating and extremely entertaining.

Faye Wooden with her fantastic Story Telling

Faye Wooden's stories were humorous and brought me back to childhood memories of an old teacher of mine in grade school telling me old stories of the small country hamlet where she grew up.

A big thank you to all the performers, employees and volunteers that made this wonderful day possible - you surpassed my expectations.

Cosby is truly one of the best places to hike and spend time in the Great Smoky Mountains national park and for those of you who don't normally go there - do it - you won't be disappointed.

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