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1st Annual Bowie's Memorial Hammer-In save the date


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The State of Franklin Blacksmith's Guild is pleased to announce we are organizing a bladesmith's hammer-in along the lines of the late and lamented Bowie's hammer-in, formerly conducted by Ron Claiborne.

 

The dates are October 7th, 8th, and 9th, 2022.


Location is Farmhouse Gallery and Gardens, Unicoi, Tennessee.  

See this thread for more details:

 

This is an official event of the Appalachian Area Chapter of Blacksmiths, https://www.AACBlacksmiths.org

 

 

Edited by Alan Longmire
We have a location!
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I'll pencil that into the calendar!

(I may need to convince my employer to move homecoming to another weekend :lol:)

Edited by Brian Dougherty

-Brian

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This is great thank you Alan!
I for one am really looking forward to being there.

Gary LT

"I Never Met A Knife I Didn't Like", (Will Rogers)

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2 hours ago, Alex Middleton said:

Any suggestions for decent hotels in the area?

 

This is the best one, but a little pricey: https://www.carnegiehotel.com/  The bar alone is worth a visit.  If your tastes lean towards the 18th century, the Eureka Inn in Jonesborough is even more expensive, but pretty cool: https://jonesborough.com/eurekainn/

 

Other than that, just avoid Volunteer Lodge on Browns Mill and the 11-E motel on West Market (unless you're really into meth, hookers, and casual beatings) and they're all anywhere from okay to pretty good.  We have a relatively large number of good hotels due to the university, the VA hospital, the medical school, and proximity to Bristol Motor Speedway.  

 

Once we have a venue nailed down I'll be better able to recommend a place based on proximity. This is a relatively small town, though (68,000 or so), so the drive time difference between closest and furthest is only going to be five to ten minutes, depending on traffic.

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4 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

avoid Volunteer Lodge on Browns Mill and the 11-E motel on West Market (unless you're really into meth, hookers, and casual beatings)

Thanks Alan.  As much fun as that sounds, I think I'll look for a good old fashioned Motel 6. :D

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Probably not much chance of a room in Jonesborough since this is the weekend of the National Storytelling Festival there. https://www.storytellingcenter.net/festival/main/  But there is some great info about lodging in many local towns on the "Plan Your Trip" page.  Could be a nice thing if you are bringing family that doesn't want to be at our event. Tickets to the storytelling seem pricey to me, but admittedly I'm old and out of touch with things like that. 

 

Alex, I see you list fishing in your interest. We have some clean mountain lakes (bass and walleye) and some of the best trout (native browns and stocked rainbow) fisheries in the eastern US. Here is a paste from a random net page, if anyone can get a spare day to fish.

 

"Situated below some of the cleanest lakes in the country, these rural tailwaters in northeast Tennessee offer some of the best trout fishing in the eastern United States. Because of year-round cold water and the low environmental impact, these rivers produce legendary fish that are easily fooled.

 

The South Holston is by far the most famous of the two. Eventually passing through the town of Kingsport, the South Holston offers big rainbows and carnivorous browns. Because most of the river passes through the yards of businesses and homes, public access is limited. The South Holston is definitely a river to float in a canoe, kayak, or inflatable pontoon.

 

The Watauga River, just west of the Tri-Cities area, offers 16 miles of prime fishing with little fishing pressure. The TVA manages a "Quality Trout Zone" that starts at the Smalling Bridge and continues downstream for 2.5 miles, offering public access for wading. Upstream, there are several TVA access points near the community of Wilbur for more wading opportunities."

 

 

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Ooh, forgot about the storytelling festival!  That's a big thing.  Usually brings a couple of thousand people.   I was more worried about a race weekend, those bring around 100,000 people. :ph34r:

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And we have a venue confirmed.  Farmhouse Gallery and Gardens, Unicoi, Tennessee (this link has hotel listings in Erwin, too).

 

 https://visitunicoicounty.com/farmhouse-gallery-and-gardens/

 

They are also a campground, if you do the RV thing, or even primitive. Here's where to book a spot:

 

https://www.hipcamp.com/en-US/tennessee/farmhouse-gallery-gardens/farmhouse-gallery-gardens

 

And Facebook, if you do that:

 

https://www.facebook.com/pages/category/Art-Gallery/Farmhouse-Gallery-Gardens-236566675582/

 

The Lynch family, who own the place, have a commercial kitchen and will be selling us food. Buy lots so they appreciate us! They also have a herd of buffalo, including a white one, if that's your thing.  They are great folks, and it's a great place.  We're lucky to get the space.  

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Got my reservations for camping. I'll be traveling alone with a Scamp. Host says each site can have up to four people and adding tents is fine, so if anyone wants to camp with me, message me.

I await the event sign-up :-)

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In addition to the storytelling Festival in Jonesborough, I just found out it's also the same weekend as the Unicoi County Apple Festival in Erwin, seven miles down the road. https://unicoicountyapplefestival.com/ This is a big, family-friendly deal!  

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Is this event open to new/aspiring bladesmiths looking to absorb a lot of info from experts or is it more for experts to catch up and show-and-tell? Wouldn't want to be the lone new/clueless guy at an event for old hands, but this does sound awfully appealing if I wouldn't be sort of snooping around the wrong territory. I live in Knoxville, so something close by is very appealing.

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This is an informal, something for everyone, soak up the knowledge kind of thing. I was a semi-beginner at knives for the first one of these I went to.  A few years later I was a featured demonstrator!  Come on up, in other words.  

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This event is completely supported by Iron in the Hat.  And, we (State of Franklin Blacksmiths Guild) are a 501(c)3 registered nonprofit, so all donations are tax deductible.

 

The original Bowie's was supported this way as well. All the makers would donate one (or more!) of their best pieces, the vendors would donate things like complete forges, exhibition-grade handle woods, salt pots, steel, and so on.  It was not uncommon to see a bunch of thousand-dollar blades on the table.  

 

We want to continue that tradition.  Bring your best work, a nice tool, good wood, books, or whatever you think it's worth to you (as long as it's legal, of course!) to get access to the collective knowledge of the event.  I haven't made the hawk yet, but it will be a fancy pipe hawk in the $1000 (msrp) range.  You could win it for a $1 ticket.  :ph34r:

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Well, I have a room reserved, and tentative permission from my boss to miss homecoming atthe college I work for this year.  Seeing as how I have never met any of y'all in person, I'm looking forward to it.

-Brian

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22 hours ago, Alan Longmire said:

it will be a fancy pipe hawk in the $1000 (msrp) range

Ok.  Now the pressure is on.  I won't be able to compete with that, but hopefully I can at least put forth something adequate. :D

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If you want to drop a few in IITH that'd be fine, and/or you could even sell those.  That's pretty normal at this thing.  Lots of folks used to have a table (or a tailgate, or a blanket) of stuff they were selling, and would then donate a few of whatever to IITH.  

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We've been very informal with it, registration will be at the event.  B) The vibe is laid-back, yet professional, with a southern accent.  Several southern accents, actually; you and Alex with your northern sounds will be vastly outnumbered by those of us speaking proper English. ;)

 

If you're camping with the Lynches on-site, then you register that with them, but for the hammer-in, there will be a sign-in table where you give us your info and sign a waiver.  Being the first time we've done this, this year is experimental.  We're not advertising to the locals, just here and in Knife Magazine.  If it's too big a crowd this year, we'll make a registration-only event next time.   

 

2 hours ago, Gerald Boggs said:

Thanks, I was thinking about 6 for IITH, but not planning on doing any selling, just go and enjoy.  

 

 

That works!  

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