Saturday update: The show continues today (Feb 18) from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Knoxville Convention Center. The place was packed on Saturday, the rain contributing to a large crowd. Several old friends dropped by the Knox TN Today booth, including Bruce and Tami Hartmann. Bruce is back in town after a stint as publisher of the Chattanooga Times-Free Press.
After years of dashing into the Dogwood Arts House & Garden Show for a quick picture or two, I’ve found myself this year in a booth.
It started when Carey Merz said we needed exposure for Knox TN Today. She facilitated a media sponsorship. So we got an 8-foot banner from Media Prints on Clinton Highway, bought out Food City’s after-Valentine’s Day supply of red-wrapped chocolate, and headed over to the Convention Center. Jennifer Goodpaster hauled our stuff in a little red wagon. She also climbed up on a chair to hang the banner, and she refused to let me leave.
Several old friends dropped by: June Lay and Pearl Leach; Opal Hurst from Murphy Hills; Gary Lynn, former president of the Halls Community Club who led efforts to restore the clubhouse; Roy Arthur, the county’s watershed coordinator; and David Gillette, chef of a new restaurant that specializes in “Southern Soul” on Cherry Street.
Multiple people drifted by for candy. The fellow in the adjoining booth was selling wine bottle openers and gadgetry. His demonstration included slamming a device on the counter to establish its durability. Every time it hit, I jumped.
Friday is the day for senior citizens. One man marched a step and a half behind his wife. He looked at me, playing solitaire on my tablet, and asked, “Are you having fun yet?”
“Nope. Are you?”
“Uh, no,” he said. “But after 31 years in the Air Force I’m used to going where they tell me. …”
The Dogwood Arts House & Garden Show will resume today (10 to 8 p.m.) and on Sunday (11-5). You’ll find me in booth 5026, trying to avoid eye contact and eating chocolate. Come on by!