Its called Memorial Day for a Reason.

Monday is Memorial Day, a day for many that includes a celebration of hot dogs, hamburgers, barbecue, chicken, and basically anything that can be cooked on a grill.   It is also the holiday weekend that signals that summer has arrived!

But it is a lot more than that also.  Memorial Day, a day of remembrance for those that have died serving our country, was originally called “Decoration Day.”  It was first observed on May 30, 1868 when the graves of fallen Union and Confederate soldiers were decorated with flowers at Arlington National Cemetery.

It was not until after World War I that the day became “Memorial Day” to honor the fallen soldiers of any war.  In 1971, Congress passed the bill proclaiming the last Monday in May as the official recognized “Memorial Day.”

Here is a link to the history of this all-important day:

http://www.usmemorialday.org/backgrnd.html

There are a number of ideas that come to mind on what to do this weekend.  With record high temperatures forecasted, the lake is probably the best place to be!

Two-Foot Cove is a popular cooling off spot on Old Hickory Lake.  There is a volleyball net to keep things jumping!  Don’t worry, the channel is clearly marked and just the volleyball area is the “two-foot” deep part.

While you’re at Old Hickory Lake, why not visit Blackjack Cove Marina, and The Black Pearl Restaurant.  They are already on their second batch of Captain’s Punch and the weekend hasn’t even started yet! The Black Pearl is open all weekend and you will not want to miss it’s awesome Sunday Brunch, a great atmosphere accompanied by steel drums.

Here are more scenes from Old Hickory Lake for your enjoyment.

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Everytime I see Ingram boats on the river, I am amazed.  In the above picture, the HB Stewart is pushing 6 barges filled with coal.  Hard to believe that it would take 318 tractor-trailers to haul the same amount.

Another fun and inexpensive outing would be a boat ride from the legendary Cherokee Steak House, near Gallatin.  Visit www.cumberlandrivercruises.com for more information.

So get out there, fire up the grills and ice cream churns, slice some watermelon, and enjoy this weekend.  But please, take a few minutes for remembrance and tribute of those who died protecting these very things we enjoy.  And if you get a chance, thank a living soldier or veteran too!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, Gallatin, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: How did you ring in 2012?

We can now say good-bye to 2011 and hello to 2012.  It’s going to be a great year!  Period!

I made some grand plans for New Year’s Eve 2011, which is also our Blue Doberman Ruby’s first birthday.  Docking reservations for our boat were made at Nashville’s Riverfront Park.  Lynrd Skynrd would be there, right where the music note would drop.    Fifty-thousand people were going to be there too.  People would line the Shelby Street Pedestrian Bridge to see what we would be right in the middle of below.  Ruby was going to be excited that all of this was just for her. 

Beth wasn’t quite as excited about the new plans.  After all, Ruby is scared of fireworks.  And what about all those people on the bridge looking down on us?  In a crowd that large, someone would probably pee off that bridge.  Besides that, in past years, we had not stayed up until midnight anyway.  Hard to argue with common sense.

So, on December 26th, we took our boat back to Blackjack Cove Marina on Old Hickory Lake after an enjoyable stay with our friends at Rock Harbor Marina on the Cumberland River.  We would celebrate Ruby’s Birthday and the New Year at Blackjack Cove Marina and the Black Pearl Restaurant.   Ruby liked the idea because she had missed her friend Storm while we had been gone.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If increased activity along the Cumberland River is a sign of better times, the good times are on the way back to Middle Tennessee!

 

‘The Plan” for New Year’s Eve at the marina came together perfectly, and we actually managed to stay up past midnight too!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Have you ever heard of Polar Bear Tubing?  That was the plan for noon the next day… so we set out to find them.

And we did.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And yes, they really were “Polar Bear Tubing.”

And we ended New Year’s Day 2012 with a feast among friends.  Cabbage, Black-eyed Peas, Cornbread, Pork Roast, Deer Meet, Beer Can Chicken, etc etc.

Yes, it looks like 2012 is going to be just fine!  Join us!

Nashville Homes Blog: It’s Christmas on the Cumberland

Christmas in Nashville.  There’s so much going on, and its hard to experience everything in one season.

The Nashville boating community is a great group of folks, consisting of boaters from the Cumberland River, Old Hickory Lake, and Percy Priest Lake.  While many decorate their homes, there are others that decorate their boats.

And then there are some groups that go all out for the season.  One such group is the Rock Harbor Yacht Club, who kicked off the Fifth Annual “Dock Crawl” this past weekend at Rock Harbor Marina.  If you are a boater, or enjoy boating, this is a must-do event.

This year’s celebration centered around various crock pots and platters, followed by specialty drinks at each boat.  Afterwards, the group crawled to the club house for karaoke, a true sight to behold!

While this event provided a good time to all, it also served the needs of many area children.  Every participant donated a toy, or a $10 donation, to Toys For Tots.

We were glad to be able to make the trip down from Blackjack Cove Marina on Old Hickory Lake to enjoy this year’s dock crawl.  It was great to see visiting boats on The Great Loop also in attendance.   Rock Harbor welcomes transient boaters all year round and is just minutes from downtown Nashville!

If you are considering “The Great Loop” trip on your boat, make it a point to enjoy the sights and sounds of the Cumberland River and Old Hickory Lake during your voyage!  If you come to downtown Nashville’s Riverfront Park for New Year’s Eve 2011, we’ll see you there!  And so will Lynrd Sknyrd!

Now, enjoy the sights of Rock Harbor Yacht Club’s 2011 Dock Crawl:

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Nashville New Homes: It’s DOG DAY.

The past few weeks, the number of people searching for a new home in Nashville has increased dramatically!  Interest rates have fallen further, and rental rates have begun to rise.  Perhaps all of the mess going on in Washington is a good thing!  Actually it is…for those that are ready to act now.

Enough of “the time to buy is now” recording.  We’ve all heard it.  We all should know it by now.  And those that don’t know it, can hear about it another day.  I want to laugh and I want you to also…right now!

Last night on Facebook, I shared a video clip from a friend’s posting…. and many of you liked it.  So, here it is again!

Pretty cool dog, huh!

Most of you know about Ruby, our Blue Doberman (which really isn’t blue but what the hell).  We got her in February when she was six weeks old.  Time has really flown by, and she has grown every minute of it too!

Notice her cute little floppy ears?  Not for long:

A lot of people think Dobermans are typically mean, at least I did.  I guess they just look intimidating.  Ruby has been real good at making dog-friends, especially at the lake with Hannah The Lab, and Storm The Dobie.

Back in February, I wasn’t too thrilled about Ruby’s arrival.  OK, I was pissed.  Now I look back over the past months and wonder how we would have gotten along without her.  I hope Ruby looks back and thinks the same thing.

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Every day is a new day with Ruby, and a new challenge for us.  Even this morning!

Which reminds me….every dog really should have a new home with a fenced back yard.  Find yours by calling me today!  In the meantime, enjoy DOG DAY!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: And what a Fourth of July it was!

Well, the Fourth of July is now behind us, but there is still a LOT of summer left for all to enjoy.  And there’s no better place to enjoy summer than in the Greater Nashville area of Middle Tennessee!

At just six months old now, this 4th of July was Ruby’s first.  You can tell she is excited about going to the lake:

She wasn’t quite as thrilled about getting in the lake though:

Our weekend officially started with the fireworks show at Cedar Creek Yacht Club.  I found this upload on you-tube that is much better than any pictures I could have taken, which you will soon agree:

Sunday was a busy day on Old Hickory Lake.  I think this is the most boats I have ever seen in “Two-Foot Cove,” which is Old Hickory Lake’s “Party Cove.”

Sunday night, a huge crowd of boats gathered at anchor in Drakes Creek of Old Hickory Lake to view Hendersonville’s fireworks display at Drakes Creek Park:

Fortunately, I found a video on you-tube capturing the finale of this event.  My pictures just didn’t turn out well.  After all, I am a Realtor, not a photographer!

Monday was a day to hang out at the marina and enjoy a great meal at The Black Pearl restaurant.  The steel drums playing maje it the closest thing in Nashville to the Caribbean.  If you haven’t experienced their Sunday Brunch, you owe it to yourself.  www.blackjackcove.com

And then, Monday night topped off the entire weekend at Riverfront Park in downtown Nashville.  I simply did not have the energy to make the trip downtown, but here are some videos I found on You-tube once again!

Here is the finale of “Let Freedom Sing” with this year’s special guest, Darius Rucker:

And when you have time, here is another video showing more of the extravanganza at Riverfront Park in Nashville.

Nashville was not the only city on the Cumberland River celebrating Independence Day.  Clarksville was also a great place to be, especially since many troops are returning from their service for OUR freedom:

And half way in-between Nashville and Clarksville, Ashland City lit up the sky over their Riverfront as well:

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Special thanks to all that took the time to film these great displays of fireworks and for allowing me to borrow them from You-Tube!   It was a great weekend, but is now time to return to helping future homeowners find the perfect new home for their needs.  At Ole South, this IS still the “Yes Days of Summer.”  Come see why!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Fireworks on the Cumberland River – Smoke on the Water & Fire in the Air!

We are lucky to live in Nashville, where we have an abundance of rivers, lakes, and streams to play in!   And this is the weekend that we’ve been waiting for and where anything that can be cooked will be cooked on a grill.

And after the meals, there are few scenes more beautiful than fireworks over the water.  There are some great opportunities coming up on the Cumberland River and Old Hickory Lake over the next few days that you will not want to miss.  

Saturday night, July 2nd, Cedar Creek Yacht Club, located on Benders Ferry Road in Mt. Juliet, will present a huge fireworks display at 9:00 pm.  Although Cedar Creek Yacht Club is not open to the public, there are many parks and other places nearby where you can enjoy the breathtaking views.  There are a lot of nearby coves to anchor in, which is where you will find many of us.

Sunday evening, July 3rd, the festivities move to the other side of the lake at Drakes Creek Park, where Hendersonville will host a terrific fireworks display at 9:00 pm.

And on July 4th, Nashville will host one of the largest fireworks extravaganzas in the country at approximately 9:15 pm at Riverfront Park, titled as “Let Freedom Ring” with special guest star Darius Rucker.

If you plan to watch the fireworks by boat, you will not be allowed to dock at Riverfront Park.  You used to be able to, but former Mayor Bill Purcell put an end to that years ago.   Don’t let that stop you from going by boat though!

Now, you must anchor (good luck) upstream of the Korean Veterans Bridge, or downstream from Woodland Street.  No boat traffic, other than law enforcement or the General Jackson is allowed between those two bridges.

Nashville on the Fourth of July is simply spectacular!  Check out the schedule of “Let Freedom Sing,” which lasts the entire weekend!

http://nashville.about.com/gi/o.htm?zi=1/XJ&zTi=1&sdn=nashville&cdn=citiestowns&tm=118&gps=295_436_1276_786&f=11&su=p284.9.336.ip_p554.18.336.ip_&tt=2&bt=0&bts=1&zu=http%3A//www.musiccityjuly4th.com/

If you don’t plan to venture out on the Cumberland River for fireworks,  there are numerous celebrations taking place all over Middle Tennessee.  Here is a list:  http://www.fox17.com/newsroom/top_stories/videos/mywx_vid_8106.shtml

And from now, through the end of the holiday weekend, if you are looking for more to do, here is a list of many area happenings:   http://www.nashvilleparent.com/dont-miss-events/june-27-july-4-2011

One thing in particular we all need to do over the next few days…. we all need to take a moment to reflect on the freedom that we enjoy in this great country and remember all the brave men and women that are serving, and have served, our country defending that freedom.

Happy Independence Day! 

P.S.  After the Independence Day Weekend Celebrations are over, Ole South’s YES DAYS OF SUMMER celebrations will continue!  Visit www.OleSouth.com or join our Facebook Fan Page www.facebook.com/olesouthproperties  for the location nearest you!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: Another Day on the Cumberland River – Part I

Friday afternoon, 8 of us departed Blackjack Cove Marina on Old Hickory Lake for a 46 mile journey down the Cumberland River to Commodore Yacht Club, where an annual brunch was taking place on Saturday.  Since this Sunday was to be the “end of the world,” we weren’t going to take any chances on missing a last river trip.

Gates of Old Hickory Lock

The weather was gorgeous as we approached Old Hickory Lock.  The lock works much like the tank on your toliet.   Flush to go down, fill it to go back up. There are floating “mooring bits” to tie onto in side the lock.

Tied up in the lockExiting the lock

 Within minutes, we were flushed down to the river below.  We exited Old Hickory Lock at 4:10 pm.

There are many interesting sites, and a lot of history along this river.  There are also many pieces of residential real estate along the river that most people don’t even know exist.  It was great to see that many homes damaged in the May 2010 flood have been rebuilt.  But there are also those that have not. 

There will be visual reminders of this catastrophe for years to come but now is a great time to buy riverfront property for a completely different and relaxing lifestyle.   And even though there is the chance of flooding, the investment potential is great.  They simply aren’t making any more riverfront property!

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All of the above scenes were taken on the 25 mile stretch of river between Old Hickory Lock and Nashville’s Riverfront Park, where we arrived at 5:50 pm to spend the night.

There was considerably more barge traffic on the river than usual.  Lots of sand, and even more coal!  It is amazing that each barge can hold the equivalent of 53 tractor-trailer loads of material.  

One of Ingram’s boats that I am partial to is the “Martha Denton,” which was named after a dear friend of our family that I have known since birth.  Yep, a long damn time. 

Ingram Barge Company's Martha Denton

Before she passed away last year, Martha joined us for a day on the boat and we learned the history of each individual the Ingram boats are named after.  It is ironic that some of the boats actually seem to take on the “personality” of their namesake!   Seeing the Martha Denton brings a smile every time we pass.  A very fitting tribute to a great lady.

Downtown Nashville is simply beautiful.  The river flows through its center much like blood flows through the heart of the body.  I hope one day Nashville can have a Riverfront to be proud of, much like Knoxville and Chattanooga.  Clarksville has greatly improved their riverfront and docking facilities too.  Why can’t we?

Docked at Riverfront Park

 The administration of Mayor Karl Dean is directing much-needed emphasis to the East Bank and it is great to see the progress.  I think his administration just might “get it” when it comes to a viable Riverfront.

Richard Fulton was the first mayor to acknowledge that we even have a Riverfront, and the docking facility we currently have was built on his watch. 

Nothing much has happened since then, except for the addition of courtesy docking for LP Field and Mayor Bill Purcell removing docking privilidges during holidays and special occasions under the disguise of Homeland Security concerns.  

Perhaps the real reason was that he didn’t have a boat and wanted to get even with everyone that did.  Regardless, it was a stupid policy that remains in effect to this day.

In reality, it is time for all of the docking facilities to be located on the East Bank.  Spend the night on a boat at Riverfront Park, or try and navigate a string of barges under the Shelby Pedestrian Bridge and you too will agree. 

Friday evening, it was our intention to hit the nightspots of downtown in a big way.  We never made it.  Too much good food and good friends to leave! 

In the next blog post, we’ll look at other scenes between downtown and Commodore Yacht Club, a 19 mile stretch of river.

Nashville New Homes: Take time to smell the mulch.

I can now cross another item from my “bucket list.”   I have lived to be 50 years old.  And..other than being fat, I feel pretty darn good!   I am thankful for having many good friends that helped make turning 50 more fun than it would have been otherwise!

It also helps to see that I am not the only one getting older.  Remember Ruby?

Birthday week 2011 will be one to remember.  From a surprise gathering at The Black Pearl at Blackjack Cove Marina on Old Hickory Lake, to dinner at Nero’s in Green Hills … the surprises keep coming.   It was a pleasant surprise to learn that “Nero” is actually still alive and well.  You see, man can live by corn cakes alone!  Like me, this restaurant has been in Nashville for 50 years plus also!  http://www.nerosgrill.com/

After spending a whole day cleaning the boat, another great surprise was coming home Monday evening to see this:

Thanks to Dana Moore and his crew, mulching is one less thing I have to do!   Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy working in the yard … but there are other things I enjoy doing more…

…Like selling new homes!   Fortunately, we have been quite busy lately and are starting more new homes each week to keep pace with sales!    Now is a great opportunity to purchase a new home in Nashville.  Our local economy is steadily rebounding, but interest rates remain historically low.  Whether you are a first-time home buyer, upsizing or downsizing, or investing… the “window of opportunity” is wide open.  

        

Don’t know where to start?   Why not give me a call at 615.593.6340?   Not sure where you want to live?  Check out our many Middle Tennessee New Home locations at www.OleSouth.com.  Come find out the many reasons why New Homes Are Better.  I know first hand, because I live in an old one.  The one with a freshly mulched yard that needs a new roof.

Regardless of your religious preference or faith, this time of year is all about coming back to life.  Brown grass is turning green, leaves are appearing on once-bare trees, and flowers are sprouting.   It looks like “its safe to come out now!”   It is, and I am looking forward to it!   Let’s all slow down, even if just for a moment, and enjoy watching nature come back to life.

I am going to take a few extra minutes and smell the mulch…before it washes away!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new homes in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, Clarksville, and Spring Hill, Tennessee.

Nashville New Homes: Back again to the Cumberland River.

What is back?   You used to see it regularly on the Cumberland River in the late 80’s and 90’s.  Doctors, Lawyers, Politicians, and other rich and powerful folk used to grace her decks and dining salons.  

Remember when 103 KDF ‘s Carl P. Mayfield used to have remote broadcasts on her from Riverfront Park?  What a coincidence she was 103-feet long too!  Everybody always waved at the owner.  He was a fun and popular guy.  Oh,  “The Good Ole Days.”

What I am talking about is the 103-foot motor yacht, named Dolce Vita, that once belonged to Mario Ferrari, owner of the legendary Mario’s on West End.  I have always wondered what happened to this Cumberland River icon.  I heard it had sunk, then there it was laid up at Rock Harbor in pretty rough shape.  Then, she disappeared and we never knew what happened.

Dolce Vita, at Rock Harbor Marina - in the early 2000's

There is something about older, classic boats.  The rich wood paneling, the classic lines, and the teakwood decks are not quite as evident on modern-day yachts.  Back in the early 90’s, I had the pleasure to join some rich friends for lunch aboard Dolce Vita, prepared by Mario himself.   He really is a gracious and colorful guy… and was a great host.  The atmosphere aboard echoed it’s name… “The Good Life.”

Back to the story.  It turned out that Dolce Vita had been purchased and taken to Louisville, KY.  It then ending up being “left for ruin” on the Ohio River.   I recently heard a rumor that it had been sold again, and was back in Nashville, tied to a bank of the Cumberland River below downtown.  Here is Dolce Vita, when it was “for sale” on the Ohio River.

Yesterday, our friends Cona and Rudy departed Old Hickory Lake on “The Great Loop.”   (Read about their trip in yesterday’s blog post https://nashvillehomesblog.com/2011/03/11/nashville-new-homes-another-floating-farewell/ or follow their trip blog at http://www.missellenadventure.blogspot.com/)

 I asked them to be on the look out to confirm the rumor of Dolce Vita being back in town.  This morning at 8:00 am, I received these pictures.  Well, I will be damned.  There it is.

It looks like a lot of the cabin “superstructure” has been removed, along with the pilot house.  I certainly hope the new owner will restore the classic lines she once had.  Until then, I’ll save judgement on this project being a classic “restoration.”   

One thing for certain, that 1966 hull is “structural” aluminum and should last forever if maintained properly.  Another certainty…. it will take many thousands of dollars to bring it back to life.  That is a strong commitment someone is apparently making.   Best of luck to them.  

Now, on to another subject…. you don’t have to undertake a boat restoration project, or any project for that matter, to live on the water.  And you don’t even have to mow grass.   Swim by choice in Old Hickory Lake or your own swimming pool.  Check this out:

You don’t have to own a boat to enjoy lakeside living.  But even if you do, you can dock it just a few footsteps away at the new Blackjack Cove Marina!  http://www.blackjackcove.com/.   Might as well leave the cooking behind too!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and Spring Hill, Tennessee

Nashville New Homes: Another Floating Farewell

This morning, we gathered for breakfast at Blackjack Cove Marina to say good-bye to more great friends, Cona and Rudy Rundlett, and Lucy – the lucky dog. 

Cona and Rudy are departing Old Hickory Lake this morning, beginning their 6000+ mile “Great Loop” voyage aboard “Miss Ellen,” their 48′ Sea Ray Motor Yacht. 

Cona’s last day of work was Friday, March 4th and they were all set to depart on Saturday, March 5th.   The heavy rains last week delayed their trip until this morning.  We’re glad the rain held them up a few more days because we got to spend more time with them!

Their voyage will take them down the Cumberland River into Lake Barkley, through the Barkley Canal, up the Tennessee River on Kentucky Lake, down the Tombigbee Waterway to the Mobile, where coins will be flipped to see where in the Gulf of Mexico they want to go next!  

Below is the route of “The Great Loop.”  Odds are they’ll throw in some side trips to they Florida Keys and Bahamas too!

 On their travels, they are going to see many beautiful sights and meet many new friends.  Speaking of friends, they will probably catch up with Charlotte and Bill (who also recently deserted us) in Marathon Key. 

“Miss Ellen” has more than all of the “comforts of home” and a guest stateroom that hopefully has our name on it sometime!   Here is Rudy’s new office, complete with all the latest technology and gadgets that would even excite “Captain Kirk:” 

Rudy assures us they have no set schedule.  Good thing because their next delay is a string of barges approaching the lock at Old Hickory Dam!   Thats just more time to enjoy this beautiful sunny day in Nashville.

May God be with Cona and Rudy on their travels until we meet again, which we hope will be soon!  In the meantime, we look forward to following their adventure on their trip blog, http://www.missellenadventure.blogspot.com/.

Who will be next to turn props on “The Great Loop?”    Odds are pretty good it won’t be us…yet anyway!

Trey Lewis is a licensed Real Estate Broker in the State of Tennessee with Ole South Realty, 615.896.0019  direct 615.593.6340.  Specializing in new home sales in the Greater Nashville area to include Nashville, Murfreesboro, Smyrna, and Spring Hill, Tennessee