Jan 10 2008
06:36 pm

This is a wonderful event coming to our area. Yeah, it's in Knoxville but it's well worth making the trip.

Patagonia is a super environmentally conscious company that takes care of it's employees super well. It's owner, Yvon Chouinard, has written the definitive book on the need to remake the Corporation to save society. Patagonia is cosponsoring the event with the Tennessee Clean Water Network, an organization near and dear to my heart. It's members helped form the Big South Fork and have donated conservation easements that include the Pepper Box of Clifty Creek.

Wouldn't it be really cool to one day bring something like this to our area? Like say...the Princess Theater?

For now we go to Knoxville. It's an honor to have this in East Tennessee.

A Festival Such as That, held at the Princess...

is one of the types of things that would precisely be tailor-made for the Princess. And I'll bet a company like Patagonia would LOVE to bring such a festival to a venue like that INSIDE one of the counties directly benefited/affected, doncha think?

Another reason for the community to continue to support ongoing efforts at revitalizing the Princess Theatre.

RB of many memorable nights to come

to the Princess, i assure you, if we get the support we need from everyone. Envision, if you will, gospel concerts, country music, blue grass, rock and roll etc.... with live plays, business seminars, Tuba Christmas, high school proms, reunions, dance recitals, talent shows, and a variety show all broadcast over local television and radio frequencies maned by students of radio and tv production at Roane State Community College and the Vocational Center. This is all very possible. Dreaming you say? Not if i can help it. Watch this video: (link...)

Muse Watson

I like his ...

I like this type of dreaming for Roane County. I can't wait for the reality!


I love downtown Harriman.

I love downtown Harriman. But when I think about what the townspeople will have their children do to make a living, I get confused. manufacturing in America has had its heart transplanted offshore and we can't all just sell each other insurance and antiques. Even a really great restaurant like the Utopia Cafe just gets by.

It would seem like some group getting behind the Princess could spark a bit of a revival.

Our City and County fathers and Mothers still don't get what it takes to bring prosperity to Roane County. If you want to attract good businesses you have to bait the hook with a quality of life that makes them want to come here. I use the CARPS acronym developed at Ga. Tech years ago, to describe what that means.

Curb Appeal, Recreation, Parks, and Schools.

Put powerlines underground, get rid of the trash and fix up the old buildings. Parks means something besides RV parks, by the way, and nobody wants to bring a business to a place with schools they wouldn't want their own children in.

And the last one...Recreation means Adult recreation: Tennis courts, greenways, restaurants, theaters and the Arts.

Get with it, People!

Green spaces...

I was recently given an opportunity to go to Washington, DC to attend the Keep America Beautiful National Conference. One of the speakers at this conference talked about "Walkable Communities." These communities were downtown and low end districts that had died and been brought back to life by simply adding a few things such as park areas, green spaces that provide shade, places to stop and linger (rest for the elderly or very young), and spaces that catered to people not cars. He wanted to share his information with as many as he could and even provided us with copies of his presentation. As I listened and watched, I could not help but think of Harriman. If anyone would like to discuss what I learned or simply wants the presentation and web info, e-mail me and I will get the info to you. I would put it here but for the life of me, I can not figure out how!

Wendy @ KRB

the key.....I believe

to economic development of the downtown is the "Princess Theater". Unlike most old theaters in small towns which only have 250 seats and are structurally in trouble...the "Princess" was made of pre-stressed concrete and structural steel, making it a building for today...and with it's close to 900 seats available, it is a viable venue for events providing enough money from ticket sales on each show to sustain itself. This activity downtown will attract other activity. i have suggested that the empty buildings with street windows be filled with artisans who would agree to maintain them and show activity in the windows in exchange for rent free space until the town becomes attractive enough to attract paying tenants or the artisans make enough in their business to begin to pay. With an "active" downtown full of people, the opportunities for success of businesses of different types becomes possible. When the marketing department of a theater is booking buses of tourist to it's shows and promoting shows to the folks in the retirement golf communities and the visitors to the Smokies...the streets would fill with pre-show and post show commerce. Along with this prosperity comes tax revenue for additional parks and recreation. ...and along with all of these things comes a quality of life far superior to what we have seen and a town to be proud of. What can we do to set this in motion? Pick up your trash....and support the "Princess" by signing the letters which will be going around soon that are going to prove to the governor that the people of Roane County want the state to approve grant money to renovate the "Princess"....the first step.

Muse Watson

Watch this... (link...)

Where do we go?

Hey Muse,

Where do we go to sign those letters? Will you be letting us know?


Positive Update

Last night the Board of Education approved a RESOLUTION OF SUPPORT for the Princess Theater. There are many ways students can benefit from a revitalized Princess Theater. Learning production, dj'ing, drama classes, and the list goes on and on.

Muse, please ask Gary to post how a revitalized Princess will be of value to our Roane County students. That would be of interest to our readers. Maybe a link to the DVD too if it's available online.

The BOE is absolutely not financially associated with the Princess Theater in any manner. There are Zero School Fund dollars involved. Our Resolution of Support is simply an endorsement of the vision proposed by the hardworking folks making the project a reality.

Way to go BOE!

Way to go BOE. What a wonderful way to support a positive thing for our kids! It shouldn't always be about the dollars involved. We should be offering public support of these plans/proposals regardless of our dollar involvement.


i could ask Gary to do that,

i could ask Gary to do that, BOE, but since i wrote the mission statement in 2001, maybe you will indulge me. LOL The link is above, but here it is again: (link...) There is no conjecture here, it is a proven fact that students excel when exposed to the arts. ...and exposed they will be when we 'Raise the Curtain' on the Princess theater once again. Roane State, the Technology Center, the Board of Education, ( thank you BOE ) and the City of Harriman, along with leaders of other municipalities of the region are joining together in partnership to ask for funds in the form of grants to give us a venue where we can teach the arts to children, adults, and seniors and celebrate what we learn in performance. Roane State and the Technology Center will be creating radio and tv production curriculums which will allow students to learn as they broadcast from the Princess Theater over Roane State's FM Station and the City of Harriman's tv station. We are hoping that the educational institutions partnering with government and the public will bring art to every age in every media. Roane State will host "Drama Kid's Camps" for younger children in the summer at the Princess and i have proposed a Saturday Morning Kids Show at the Princess which will be televised and recorded for future broadcast in larger markets. This Saturday Morning Show will give parents a safe place to take their children so that they can have a break while the children learn about and celebrate the arts. i have also proposed a Saturday Night Variety Show which would use a multi media format of video, live skits, and great musicians which we hope will go on to succeed on a national market. We have the best 'host' available for this show and my representation in Hollywood specializes in just that kind of promotion. All arts organizations will have the opportunity to use the Princess for their classes and performances. Gary wants to see the Sunday Gospel Jubilee revived and i believe it is another candidate for broadcast. We have so many talented people in this area, from musicians to potters....from actors to wood carvers. Imagine, if you will, on Sunday a Gospel show, on Monday a ceramics class, on Tuesday during the day a business seminar and that night a family reunion, on Wednesday a Blue Grass Band, on Thursday an auction, on Friday a play, and on Saturday....a variety show. Years ago i shared my dreams for the Princess with Gary because he let me know that his dream was for the area to shine again. It will. Because of people like Gary, and Dr, Goff, and Dr. McGriff, and Vera Scarbrough, and Jim Henry, and Chris Mason, and Mark Powers, and Lonnie Wright...and every body else who signs on in support of the Princess Partnership to educate all ages in the arts.

Where do we sign......


When i was a student at Berea College in Berea, Kentucky teaching the folks out in the mountains to read and write as part of one of the college's out-reach programs, i became frustrated that the folks i taught were reluctant to take advantage of programs which would better their lives. As i got to know them, i found out that their reluctance was grounded. These gentle people of Appalachia had been promised things and lied to for years. i came away from the mountains with a feeling that i should never be a part of those lies. So bare with us, if you will, we are trying to hold back our excitement until we know that we can pull off something good for the people. Obviously, since the folks holding the purse want to know if the people support the ideas, folks are going to have to know some things before they happen...but we are trying to be responsible in what we say and where. There will be an opportunity to sign up in support of arts education and it will be soon. I promise you, i will come back here and let you know. Thank you for wanting to know.

Muse Watson

Watch this... (link...)

I am ...

I am holding you to that!


PS I just love the Princess and want to preserve it. I know the memories will live forever, but just like I tell my son about the Fox Theatre in Atlanta(I saw the Aristocats for the first time there!), I want to tell my grandchildren that I saw 101 Dalmations for the first time at the Princess. Both movies that are still being viewed 35 years later!

Hey...I told my kids that I

Hey...I told my kids that I saw Commander Cody and the Lost Planet Airmen at the Fox...They were not impressed. Then I mentioned Skynerd...

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