West TN Writer

Amanda Stravinsky

Hey! I’m Amanda Stravinsky, a born-and-raised Jersey girl who now makes her home in the awesome, musically-inclined city of Nashville. My family and I vacationed in East Tennessee every year when I was young. Driving through the Great Smoky Mountains, staying in cabins in Gatlinburg, horseback riding in Pigeon Forge and Dandridge instilled in me a love for this state at an early age. I now have the privilege of working and living in Tennessee. My blog posts will center on what’s happening around this great state.  I’d love it if you joined me! Describe your perfect Tennessee day. If gas prices were virtually non-existent? Okay. The weather would be a crisp 50 degrees, bright sunshine, one or two fluffy clouds in the sky. The Nashville city skyline would be void of city haze. My day would start in Nashville with a quick run to Bongo Java for a mocha latte and a stroll through Centennial Park with my friends. Then, we’d drive to Sevier County to hike Rainbow Falls. Coming back from our hike, we would drive back to Chattanooga for the aquarium and the Southern Belle Riverboat tour. We would end the day right where we started, in Nashville, settling down for some southern home-cooking at the Loveless Café. Of course, one day wouldn’t be enough so I would add a second day and head to Memphis for some toe-tapping music and finger-licking-good barbecue. Where’s the first place you’d take a friend visiting Tennessee? Being an honorary Nashvillian, I would have to take my friend to downtown Broadway to experience the sights, smells and sounds of live music blaring from the honky- tonks, flashing neon lights and that lingering smell that tells you some great BBQ is always at your fingertips. If you could meet one historical Tennessean, who would it be and why? (This can be someone still living.) I’ve always wanted to meet Aretha Franklin who was born and raised in Memphis. It would be an honor to be in the presence of one of the great singers of our time, to hear her story of how she used her powerhouse voice to break into the music industry. Also, I would ask her for some singing lessons.


Stories By Amanda

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George Dickel Distillery

Slow and Steady: The Formula for Great Tennessee Whisky

George Dickel Distillery in Tullahoma, Tenn. was my first visit to a distillery, though I have visited the Guinness brewery in Dublin, Ireland. While touring...Read on


Grab your copy of the 2013 Tennessee Vacation Guide Today

It’s finally here! The FREE 2013 Official Tennessee Vacation Guide has been released by the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development and is available for your...Read on

skiing Ober Gatlinburg2


Jack Frost has us in his cold grip and, while it seems comfortable to be like the Tennessee black bears and hibernate during the winter,...Read on

Dollywood water slide

Tennessee Beckons with Adventure and Attractions

With the holidays over, the dust settles over 2012 and we open the door to 2013. Hopeful possibilities, new opportunities and wanderlust plans fill the...Read on

2010 SNOW 080

Tennessee Urges You to Get Away To It All With a Little R&R

While Christmas is unquestionably the most anticipated time of the year, we all know it can also be stressful. It’s all fun, but let’s face...Read on


Tennessee Christmas Attractions are NOT Just for Kids

Christmas is in two weeks and the celebrations are in full swing with concerts, ballets and television specials. Small towns are trimmed with garland and...Read on

Denmark Presb Church

Tennessee Churches with Civil War Stories

Tennessee churches dot almost every street; their steeples rise high like a beacon of hope. For some, there is much more to the stories than...Read on