The 2019 LDEI Annual Conference will be held October 24-27, 2019 at the Loews Vanderbilt Hotel in Nashville. Hosted by the Nashville chapter, the meeting will take as its theme "Rhythm & Roots."
Exciting conference update, Dames: for all of you joining us in Nashville on Wednesday there’s a new window of time to get out and see the town, thanks to Carla’s reschedule to Saturday afternoon. Here are a few of our favorite Nashville stops to check out. Have fun!
Of course, to set the right tone before visiting Nashville for the conference, we recommend that you tune into the new Ken Burns Country Music 8-part documentary chronicling the history of country music in Nashville. It premieres on September 15 on PBS stations nationwide!
Cheekwood Estate & Gardens (1200 Forrest Park Dr.)—The 55-acre estate was built by the Cheek family, the owners of Maxwell House Coffee, in the early 1930s. Just west of downtown, take a beautiful drive through Belle Meade to the estate. October is a spectacular month to stroll through the rolling gardens and visit the mansion. You can continue your historic home theme with a visit to the nearby Belle Meade Plantation.
Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage, Home of the People’s President (4580 Rachel’s Lane, Hermitage)—Tennessee is the home of three American presidents, the most famous, of course, is the 7th president, Andrew Jackson. Any American history buff won’t want to miss a visit his beautiful home and farm. It’s about 10 miles from downtown.
Frist Art Museum (919 Broadway)—The beautiful Art Deco post office on Broadway houses our world-class art museum. It is a non-collecting museum that features traveling art exhibitions. The main exhibit while you are visiting is “Hearts of Our People: Native Women Artists,” the first major museum exhibition exclusively devoted to Native women artists from all over the United States and Canada, ranging across time and media.
Country Music Hall of Fame (222 5th Ave. S.)—We guarantee a trip through this museum will change your thinking about American music. This museum not only showcases the history, storytelling, and creativity of country music, it is also a research institution safeguarding more than 2.5 million priceless artifacts including instruments, photographs, costumes, and recordings. Along with the extraordinary permanent exhibits, the current show “Outlaws & Armadillos: Country’s Roaring 70s” is a must for Willie and Waylon fans. Be sure to visit the famous Hatch Show Print shop that still cranks out block print posters just behind the museum on the way to the Omni Hotel.
How about a total immersion in Nashville music for the afternoon? After visiting the Country Music Hall of Fame, walk a couple of blocks to Lower Broadway, home to Nashville’s famous honky-tonks. Smart folks go honky-tonking during the day when the crowds are a little lighter. Every joint you walk in will feature world-class musicians playing tunes you’ve grown up with. It’s probably a good idea to bring some earplugs. You’ll also be in the neighborhood of several other musical museums: The George Jones Museum, The Patsy Cline Museum, and The Johnny Cash Museum. We’re sorry to report that Twitty City is no longer!
The Musicians Hall of Fame & Museum (401 Gay St.) is also downtown located in the Nashville Municipal Auditorium. This museum is a fun diversion for music lovers of all genres. It doesn’t get as much attention, but you won’t want to miss Jimi Hendrix’s Purple Haze.
The Parthenon (2500 West End Ave.) in Centennial Park is a nice walk from the Loews Hotel. It is the world’s only life-size replica of the ancient Greek temple built as part of the World’s Fair celebrating Tennessee’s Centennial Celebration in 1896. Inside you’ll find the beautiful Athena recreated by Nashville sculptor Alan LeQuire.
Tennessee State Museum, Bicentennial Mall, and Farmer’s Market (900 Rosa Parks Blvd.) are just north of downtown, a short ride away. Our Taste of Nashville event will take place at the museum, but there’s so much more to see and do that you could spend the entire afternoon at the museum, plus take a stroll through the state’s three distinct regions on the Mall. The timeline at the Bicentennial Mall is especially interesting for grasping the state’s history. You will be hungry and thirsty so head to the Farmer’s Market right next door (Great beer selection at The Picnic Tap). Even better, it’s all free!