Thank for all of the support for 5 years of Arts and Ag Tour in Hickman County. We had a great run and loved being a part of the community of amazing artists, farmers and musicians who all participated in the good times. We’ve decided to take this year off.
The 2016 Arts & Ag Tour Guide and Map is now available for pickup or download. Explore the beautiful back roads of Hickman County on this free, two day, self-guided tour of farms, art and music. Many favorite stops from previous years will be returning, as well as some new stops and new vendors to meet. Printed guides are now available at the Hickman County Chamber of Commerce on the Centerville Town Square and at each stop on the day of the tour. In the meantime, you can download a full version of the tour guide here.
The American Gothic painting by Grant Wood has become an icon of the American Farmer. In this new series of photographs, Emily Naff hopes to honor the tradition of the New American Farmer, focusing on those with small sustainable farms. These farmers have all made a decision to farm in ways that is healthy for the animals, the land and the humans. Farming is not just a career, it’s a lifestyle choice that these farmers have embraced with body, mind and soul.
For this photo series, Emily asked each of the farmers to pose in a style reminiscent of the painting, while holding tools of the farm and/or something that represents them and their farm.
- Totty’s Bend Soap Farm: Vanessa Davis is holding one of their new baby goats, while Nate poses with the best tool for pitching hay. Vanessa is one of the organizers of the Arts and Ag Tour. Be sure to stop by and see her, Nate and the goats at Stop #8.
- Lewis Acres: Nicole and Mark Lewis are holding Tennessee Fricassee, the rooster, and a basket of fresh eggs from their happy hens. Nicole was one of the founding team members of the Arts & Ag Tour. She’ll be selling eggs at the Farmers Market at Riverpark on Saturday. Stop # 7
The first prints from this new and ongoing series will be on display at Toyzini Gallery, Stop #15, on the Arts and Ag Tour. There you will also see the photos of Turnbull Creek Farm, Sugar Camp Farm, Bee Haven Springs Farm and Riversong Farm. The farmers in the first photos from the series have been from Hickman County, but Emily would like to photograph farmers all across Tennessee. If would like to suggest a farmer for this series, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For over ten years, Emily Naff has pointed her camera at exotic locations around the world. Since buying a farm in Hickman County, she has started looking closer to home for photographic inspiration. As Emily says, “this series, is really just a good excuse to hang out with interesting people and visit beautiful farms.” For more info about each of the farmers see blog posts on www.emilynaffphotography.com
Destiny Church of Centerville, first-timers on the Arts and Ag Tour, will bring a host of food and fun to stop number 4 on the tour map. An offshoot of the Destiny Church in Columbia, Destiny Church of Centerville believes Arts and Ag will serve as an opportunity to not only highlight the often hidden treasures of our community, but also to meet more of that community and give back to them. As such, 100% of the funds raised by Destiny Church of Centerville will go straight back to ministering to those in the community.
At their location during the Arts and Ag Tour, Destiny Church of Centerville will have sandwiches, potato salad, fresh vegetables, fruit salad, handmade drinks, and ice cream cones. There will also be music, a cool place to rest, clean restrooms and a play area for the kids. In addition to this, Doodles Central will be on hand with her soaps and herbal tea for sale, and Duck River Naturals will be selling their flavored teas, spice blends and other products.
Destiny Church of Centerville is located at 101 S. Public Square in Centerville. Aside from their booths at Arts and Ag, Duck River Naturals’ products may be viewed or purchased at http://www.duckrivernatural.com. Doodles Central’s products may also be purchased at her website. More information on Destiny Church of Centerville and on the products being sold by vendors will be available at their respective booths during Arts and Ag.
When Malarie McConaha moved to Nashville in 2014 to launch her career as a singer and songwriter, she began hitting the local music scenes around the city most evenings while during the day, working at a Broadway boot store to pay the bills. That story is a familiar one for many music hopefuls, but for her, that part didn’t last long.
She had been hearing about a small town outside of Nashville, where many of her music icons live and play music in casual settings almost every day. A local open mic night seemed like a simple stop, but it would be the first of many that would change her life.
She quickly met friends and became close with many of the famous and not-so-famous talented locals who have become mentors, sponsors, dear friends, and fans.
“At first, I was a little star-struck, but that wears off pretty fast when you realize that they are normal people living normal lives,” says McConaha. “Being surrounded by great talent inspires your own growth as an artist.”
But don’t let her humility fool you. There’s a reason why the music veterans like working with her. She has a style that blends hints of Janice Joplin and Bonnie Raitt with undertones of Linda Ronstadt. But her style is all her own as she tells stories of conviction, love, mystery, and adventure in her original, unique music. She underscores her soulful voice and story telling ability with raw acoustic and electric guitar.
Her talents extend beyond music. After suffering a broken wrist one afternoon after playing a show, she developed a love of making jewelry, which she sells at every show. Her jewelry is also sold in shops across the nation under the name Copper and Clay.
McConaha will be joined by Tim Hunter to perform for two days at the Duck River Rose Farm on the 2016 Arts and Ag Tour of Hickman County. They will play covers by Bonnie Raitt, Fleetwood Mac, John Prine, Bob Dylan, and Guy Clark, as well as originals including McConaha’s “Smooth Talker,” and Hunter’s “Til the Hurricanes Are Gone,” which is currently on hold for George Strait.
Heritage Reclaimed Farm will be a part of the Hickman County Arts and Ag Tour for the third time this year. Established in 2012, Heritage Reclaimed Farm has all Middle Tennessee has to offer; rolling hills, open pastures, ponds, creeks and springs. The Charles and Shona Shough family moved to middle Tennessee for the purpose of being part of a community of faith, establish better food systems, and to help serve their neighbors. Along with their two sons, Isaac and Valor, they are working hard to reclaim the land and the heritage of their homestead.
In their commitment to better health, and good stewards of the Land, they raise and sell Grass-fed Beef & Sheep, Organic Pastured pigs, and organic pastured chickens.
On Saturday of the Hickman County Arts and Ag Tour, they will be featuring a French Market and preparing their signature Organic Pork Stack Fry Bread Plate with slaw and French Beignets topped with Organic Jam. You can purchase Organic, rustic, artisan bread, organic raw milk grass-fed cheese from an Artisan Cheese maker and purchase their meats directly raised on the farm. When visiting the farm, you will enjoy the scenic beauties of Middle Tennessee, and speak to one of their farm-hands and discuss grass-fed rotational cattle, chicken grazing and low infrastructure farm endeavours.
You can take a self-guided tour of the farm, or we can take you on a hay ride. You will be able to see and meet the animals that are a part of their everyday life. This day is sure to be memorable, and they invite all to come and take a stroll around the farm, and garden and enjoy the beauty of special homestead.
Craftyus, longtime vendors at the annual Banana Pudding Festival, will be appearing for the first time on the Arts and Ag Tour at stop number 1 on the Public Square. Getting their start by combining a love of woodworking with an interest in polymer clay, Craftyus creates a variety of polymer clay figurines, wood crafts, and wood burnings. Seeing these end results is the most satisfying part of the process for Craftyus, that and the enjoyment their crafts bring to others.
At their booth during Arts and Ag, Craftyus will have a wide selection of their crafts available for purchase, including beautiful and unique bird houses, wood burned plaques, carpenter bee traps, polymer clay ornaments, charms, and figurines. Many of the materials Craftyus uses are either from the area or from the USA.
Outside of the Arts and Ag Tour, Craftyus’ works can be viewed and purchased during Autumn in the Country on October 1st on the Square in Centerville and Christmas Time’s a Coming on November 19th at the East Hickman Elementary School in Lyles. They also sell their crafts from their home. More information can be found on their Facebook page, http://www.facebook.com/craftyuscrafts, or at their booth during Arts and Ag.
Tottys Bend Soap Farm will be joining the the Arts and Ag Tour on Friday and Saturday, for the fifth year in a row, as stop number 8 on the tour map. There you can see firsthand how owners Nate and Vanessa Davis raise their goats and make a variety of skin care products from their goat milk. The Davis’ moved to Hickman County from Atlanta, GA in the summer of 2006. The couple was immediately drawn to the idea of raising dairy goats for milk and cheese. Soon they had a small, productive herd of registered Nubian goats. Neither Nate nor Vanessa had any experience with goats or farming of any kind. They relied on advice from experienced goat farmers and did much of their early learning through trial and error.
In 2010, with a few years of goat farming under their belts, the couple decided to experiment with making goat milk soap. At first they gave their handmade soap to friends and family but soon they began selling their goat milk soaps at the Centerville Marketplace, a shop on the square in Historic Downtown Centerville, just a few miles from their farm. This was the perfect place for the Davis’ to try out different styles and scents of soap on local shoppers. Within the year, the Davis’ created what has become their signature goat milk soap, a four ounce rectangular bar embellished with a decorative Celtic pattern. It was in the fall of 2010 that Nate and Vanessa Davis founded Tottys Bend Soap Farm.
The following year, Tottys Bend Soaps hit the shelves in several Tennessee Whole Foods stores. While the exposure at Whole Foods has been a blessing to the small company, the Davis’ agree their favorite venue is still Centerville Marketplace for its local charm and loyal customers. They also enjoy setting up a booth and selling their products directly to their customers during the Arts & Ag Tour. “There is nothing more rewarding than to talk to our customers in person. At the Arts & Ag Tour we can share our story and talk about our handmade goat milk soaps. People love to meet our goats, and learn about the nourishing benefits of goat milk, and the natural ingredients that go into our products,” says Nate. In addition to their goat milk soap bars, Tottys Bend Soap Farm also offers handmade goat milk lotions, shaving soaps, talc-free body powder and all natural lip balm. “We make over 25 different scents from recipes that are gentle on sensitive skin,” says Vanessa.
Goat expert Pam Hethcote from Possum Hollow Farm and owner of Star Brite Goat milk Soaps and Lotions will also be there with her handmade items. She and the Davis’ longtime friendship developed from their mutual love of raising dairy goats. “We goat people stick together!” says Hethcote. Brenda Estes, another fellow goat farmer, will also be onsite doing milking demonstrations. Early visitors are invited to milk one of Brenda’s dairy goats. Goat cheese and fresh goat milk samples will also be available to visitors of Tottys Bend Soap Farm during the Arts & Ag Tour.
JoAnne’s Creations will be set up with her beautiful handcrafted jewelry and fabric creations as well as homemade jams and sweets.
Baskets for Hearth and Home will be making their first appearance on the Arts and Ag Tour at the Grinder’s Switch Winery, stop number 12 on the tour map. Sherryl Sneed and Brenda Cashion, the founders of the group, were initially introduced to the art of basket weaving through a class at church, Brenda 14 years ago and Sherryl 4 years ago. Since becoming hooked on the craft of basket weaving, the two have committed themselves to the art of creating something that is both useful and decorative at the same time, while teaching others to do the same.
Baskets for Hearth and Home will have a large selection of handwoven baskets of various sizes available for sale at their booth. The baskets are made from a variety of materials, including rattan, white oak, honeysuckle, day lily leaves, and leather. In addition, the baskets are stained with a homemade water-based stain made from local walnut hulls. Aside from the wide assortment of baskets they will have for sale, Baskets for Hearth and Home will also be demonstrating basket weaving all day Saturday.
The baskets on display during Arts and Ag are also available at various other festivals throughout the year and at Baskets for Hearth and Home’s online store at basketsforhearthandhome.com. Their basket weaving classes are also available outside of the Arts and Ag Tour; Sherryl and Brenda teach a class each month at Cross Roads Cowboy Church in Bon Aqua and quarterly at Centerville United Methodist Church. Groups interested in basket weaving classes may also schedule a class at their location.
More information can be found on Baskets for Hearth and Home’s website or at their booth during the Arts and Ag Tour on Saturday.
Jp.creatives will be displaying her unique and personalized creations at stop number 1–the Public Square in Centerville–on this year’s Arts and Ag Tour. Her second year on the tour, Janet Pierce, the artist behind jp.creatives, got her start working with puzzle pictures: first, putting a puzzle together and then gluing it to a surface to create a picture. Later, she made a frame for her granddaughter and, as she puts it, “the rest is history.” Even before her work with puzzle pictures, Janet Pierce has always had a love of the arts; as a child, she learned to play the piano from her mother, a pastime she enjoys to this day. Her artistic interests only expanded from there, first with crafting and later on, drawing.
In all of her many and varied pieces, jp.creatives strives for the challenge of creating something new. Each piece she makes is unique, no two exactly alike. At her booth during the Arts and Ag Tour, jp.creatives will have decorated frames, coasters, trinket boxes, ornaments – paper mâché stars & hearts and glass globes in different sizes – letters, wall hangings, crosses, and possibly some pieces of her father’s hand-carved, folk-lore style ornaments, pins, barrettes, and earrings.
Outside of the Arts and Ag Tour, jp.creatives’ work can be viewed occasionally at the Farmer’s Market at Riverpark in Centerville, from June through the end of September; at the Grinder’s Switch Music and Arts Festival on September 10th; at the Autumn in the Country Arts & Crafts Fair on October 1st, and at the Christmas Time’s a-Comin’ Arts and Crafts Fair on November 19th. Jp.creatives also has a regular booth at the Centerville Marketplace on the Public Square and takes custom orders throughout the year. Further information will be available at jp.creatives’ booth during the Arts and Ag Tour.
Kim Cary’s handcrafted jewelry will be making its debut appearance on the Public Square in Centerville–stop number 1 on the map–during this year’s Arts and Ag Tour. She first began her journey into silversmithing and bead weaving thirty years ago as a single mother to young children. Since then, she has further developed her craft, spending many hours beading ornate and intricate designs. She pays special attention to the design of each of her pieces, carefully selecting each color and incorporating natural stones in such a way as to compliment the person wearing it.
Kim Cary’s booth at Arts and Ag will feature hand-made jewelry in sterling silver and 24k gold, beaded jewelry using natural gems like rubies and emeralds, and rose petal beads that keep their scent. She will also have homemade peanut butter brittle for those who have a sweet craving while perusing.
Kim Cary’s workshop is at her home, and, in her own words, “people are welcome to come and see what I do; I personalize to people’s requests and generally love a good chat.” More information will be available at Kim Cary’s booth at the Centerville Courthouse during Arts and Ag.