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Sincerely, Susan: Football, friends and fun kick off another year

August 26th, 2015 10:00 am by Susan Kendrick Lauhoff

Sincerely, Susan: Football, friends and fun kick off another year

Lo Country Boil: Dave & Jennifer Rusty Light

Dear Readers ~

It dawned on me as I sat down to write to you that this month marks one year since I started our correspondence ~ what a privilege this has been! Your invitations, hospitality, compliments, notes and encouragement have been a true source of inspiration for me as I have faced many personal challenges and changes. Your spirit of prayer and cheer through GOD’s nudges have helped steer the rudder of my life, and I thank you with a full and grateful heart.

I am back from Georgia knowing that with August and the first five-degrees fall in temperature, it’s time to start thinking about football season ... attending or watching games around the TV, tailgate parties, parking passes, opponents, etc. Some of us start immediately following the previous season with “There’s always next year.”

If you have been reading my letters from the beginning, you may recall that I’m a Georgia Bulldog and have attended pre-game bonfires and games in red and black since early childhood. My most memorable bonfire was as a child when attending one the night before Georgia played Auburn in Athens. My parents took us small fans and left King, our Weimaraner, in the car. Upon returning, the inside of the car was literally destroyed by his antics. To ease the damage, Georgia did win when Fran Tarkenton made a connection in the end zone with 30 seconds left on the clock to tie at 13-13. The extra point kick went through the uprights to close the game with a victory.

Moving to Northeast Tennessee seven years ago was literally a culture shock and especially so upon visiting a certain local retail establishment. However, I’ve since acclimated and know I’m home in the SEC! With Georgia’s upcoming opener at noon against Louisiana-Monroe on Sept. 5, and Tennessee’s against Bowling Green on the same day at 4 p.m., area fans may settle back for another season of glorious fall Saturdays - cheering for our respective teams be it the two I have mentioned or another.

Returning to Tennessee after my summer journey presented opportunities for local social events. The first Annual Northeast Tennessee Wine Festival in Kingsport proved worthy. It was a huge success due to the carefully-detailed planning under the leadership of Sherri Mosely and sidekick, Emma Clark, of the DKA (Downtown Kingsport Association) with their numerous volunteers and enormous attendance. Many area vineyards in one setting at The Social offered a variety of wines to satisfy even the most discerning palate. Across the street, vendors presented their clever artisanal wares. Refreshments were sold and enjoyed under tents with picnic tables as musicians entertained. Put it on your calendar next year as this event is a must-do for wine enthusiasts.

A perfect evening of comfortable weather greeted the Annual Lo’ Country Boil fundraiser for the Netherland Inn inside the Kingsport Farmer’s Market. A huge crowd supported this popular event where I “ran into” several friends. Many had the opportunity to ride the newly-opened carousel. All enjoyed good food, beverage and music. The proceeds from the event go to support the maintenance of our one-of-a-kind historic site that is both educational and attractive to all ages.

Tempting upcoming events:

* With a minor in Art, I was excited to learn that three local artists (Kathy Hawk, April Jordan & Jane Moein) are on exhibit. Their show, The Painter’s Printmakers, will be exhibited in the Renaissance Center, Main Gallery, through Aug. 28. If you are an art history buff, you will not want to miss this display where over 10 years of creating monotypes, the artists explain the process and greats from the past.

* "The Funny Side" featuring The Foggy Valley Gang continues at the LampLight Theatre today, next weekend and the first one in September. For an evening of belly laughs, contact 423-343-1766 or www.lamplighttheatre.com for more information and tickets.

* The Kingsport Theatre Guild is featuring the "Wind In The Willows, The Musical" at the Main Stage on Sept. 4-5 and Sept. 11-12 at 7 p.m. and Sept. 5-6 and Sept. 12-13 at 2 p.m. Please visit 423-392-8427 or KingsportTheatreGuild@gmail.com for tickets and information.

* The Annual Rhythm & Roots will be held Sept. 18-20 in Bristol.

During my transition, I’ve enjoyed being a house guest of gracious friends. With Nancy and Jack Weikel, I reveled in hearing Nancy’s wonderful stories of being a Methodist preacher’s wife while sitting inside one of her two screened porches in the evenings overlooking her enchanting gardens. And, at Margaret and Jack Mahaffey’s, I was thoroughly engrossed with the constant flutter of a variety of bird species only five feet from the breakfast table where they engulf a buffet of treats. Did you know that a brown thrasher’s song is very similar to that of a cardinal? And, that there are eight cell towers on Bays Mountain?

I will close with a request ... I have yet to visit a Dobyns-Bennett football game and have decided that this year I will do so. High school games were the center of activity within the small town in which I grew up. Not having children and participating in the local school system has kept that fundamental participation off my radar. So, I am asking to join you for a home game and cheering for the local team and band.

Take care and thank you for your continued support and prayers. I appreciate you so much!

Sincerely,

Susan

Kingsport's Susan Kendrick Lauhoff is a Sunday Stories columnist who highlights some of the area's many events and happenings, as well as upcoming events, on the second and fourth Sundays of each month in Sincerely, Susan. Email her at sincerelysusan@timesnews.net

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