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More than 150 folk artists and musicians to recreate rural Tennessee

  heritage festival
Visitors to the UT AgResearch and Ames Plantation Heritage Festival can watch folk artists demonstrate 19th century skills and try their hand at some of them - like weaving with an old-fashioned loom. The Heritage Festival is Saturday, October 10, from 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Image by G. Rowsey, courtesy UTIA.
On Saturday, October 10, more than 150 folk artists and musicians will recreate rural Tennessee from years gone by at the 18th annual Heritage Festival. Held at the Ames Plantation in Grand Junction, visitors will have an opportunity to explore the history, culture, art and traditions of the area. Gates open at 9 a.m., and visitors should plan to arrive early to see it all.

Many of the activities take place at Ames’ Heritage Village, a replica of a 19th century rural settlement. The village contains several homes, a one-room schoolhouse and the nationally renowned Stencil House. Named for the elaborate designs covering the walls, the Stencil House is believed to be the most extensive surviving display of stenciling in the South.

There will be blacksmithing, weaving, broom making and woodworking demonstrations. Skilled artisans who make toys, jewelry, baskets, candles, pottery and other crafts all by hand will have booths. Their handcrafted items are of the highest quality and make unique gifts for family or friends.

If you have an interest in historical farming practices, you can explore a large collection of antique tractors and steam engines, see horses being shoed, and learn about dark fired tobacco production. Civil War enthusiasts can tour a reproduction of a Civil War camp, view artillery demonstrations or chat with re-enactors in period dress. Some of the region’s top bluegrass, gospel and string bands will entertain on two outdoor stages throughout the day.

Young visitors will enjoy handpicking and ginning cotton, hand milking a goat or creating their own unique stencil designs. Other hands-on activities include participating in an archeological dig on an actual 19th century historic site.

The Heritage Festival begins at 9 a.m. and ends at 5 p.m. Admission is $5 for adults, $2 for children ages 4-16, and free for ages 3 and under. Parking is free. Enter Ames Plantation at Buford Ellington Road off Tennessee Highway 18. No pets are permitted.

For more information, visit the web site or call 901-878-1067.

Ames Plantation is privately owned and operated by Successor Trustees of the Hobart Ames Foundation through the Will of the late Julia Colony Ames. The Plantation’s 18,400 acres of land are made available to University of Tennessee AgResearch as one of 10 AgResearch and Education Centers located across the state.

Ames also partners with other universities and state agencies across the South in an effort to more fully utilize its diverse array of natural and cultural resources. Its cooperative research programs focus on forestry-wildlife interactions as well as forage, beef cattle, plant and soil science, and cultural resource issues.

Published August 28, 2015

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