I created this Bristol themed scavenger hunt specifically for the listeners of Kristi Slaughter’s radio show on SuperTalk 92.9 FM. Anyone, of course, is welcome to do it though. There is a free downloadable file below, if you would like to print the clues off.
For those of you who have never been to the Bristol TN/VA area, first let me explain why it’s called Bristol TN/VA. There are actually two towns, Bristol, TN and Bristol, VA. They share a street, appropriately named State Street. If you stand on one side of the street, you are in Tennessee. If you stand on the other side of the street, you’re in Virginia. Because these two towns are so close together, and because they share a lot of the same history, they are simply known as Bristol. The only time someone asks whether you’re talking about TN or VA is when they are looking for a certain address.
In the middle of State Street, right in downtown, there are small brass markers that are well-known picture spots (despite the fact that you’re literally standing in the middle of the street). If you straddle the yellow lines in the road, one foot will be in TN and one foot will be in VA. Geico did a commercial about 3 years ago where the gecko was standing on the marker trying to decide if he was in Virgenessee, or Tenniginia. Haha!
Bristol has a rich history, a beautiful downtown, and a promising future. So, if you’re ever in the area, stop by, stand in the middle of the road and get your picture taken, look through the shops, and try one of the many delicious restaurants that are in the area.
Now on with the scavenger hunt.
I designed this hunt to be done entirely from home. Given the current situation, most people aren’t going out right now. (When things open back up again, I will get with Kristi and Rick, and we’ll plan out a photo scavenger hunt for everyone.)
Below are 30 questions about Bristol TN and VA. All of these questions can be answered by searching for them on the internet somewhere. If you get stumped, feel free to email me, firstname.lastname@example.org, or sent me a private message on Facebook, @thenovelturtle, and I’ll give you a hint.
Bristol TN/VA at Home Scavenger Hunt
1) Above I mention the markers in the middle of State Street, how many markers inlaid in the street are there total?
2) If you’re standing at the corner of State Street and Volunteer Parkway, what large Bristol related item do you see?
3) Name 3 of the bands that were at the very first Rhythm and Roots Festival.
4) What was the original slogan on the lighted State Street sign?
5) What was the date that the first passenger train came into the Bristol Train Station?
6) What year was the first race at Bristol Motor Speedway?
7) What was the name of the vaudeville duo that recorded with Ralph Peer in The Bristol Sessions in 1927?
8) What is the name of the film experience at the Birthplace of Country Music Museum, that highlights the techniques and sounds of The Bristol Sessions?
9) What was the first show at the Paramount?
10) Who is the woman holding the fiddle in the country music mural on State Street?
11) What is the most popular burger on the Burger Bar menu?
12) What is the total of the numbers on the two cars that are pictured on the NASCAR mural on State Street?
13) What was the name of the club that came up with the idea for a joint library between Bristol, TN and Bristol, VA?
14) What year did The Blackbird Bakery open?
15) What was the name of the man known as “The Marrying Parson”?
16) How big is the East Hill Cemetery?
17) How many stars are on the Bristol TN/VA flag?
18) What year was Tennessee Ernie Ford born?
19) How did Solar Hill get its name?
20) When did the name change from the Virginia Institute to the Virginia Intermont College?
21) What other historic landmark (nearby, but not in Bristol) was built using trees from Cumberland Square Park and Veteran’s Memorial?
22) How many lights are used for the Speedway in Lights event?
23) What two original items are still used at Uncle Sam’s Loan Office in Bristol, TN?
24) What year was L.C. King Manufacturing started?
25) What size replica is the train at Steele Creek Park?
26) What is the name of the upper section of Bristol Caverns?
27) How big is the South Holston Dam?
28) How many seats are at Viking Hall in Bristol, TN?
29) What is the name of the pavilion at Sugar Hollow Park in Bristol, VA?
30) What is the bottom of the “L” made out of in the LoveWork metal mural in Bristol, VA?
I enjoyed putting this scavenger hunt together. There was a lot about the history of Bristol that I didn’t know. Like where the name Sapling Grove came from, the fact that Virginia Intermont College started as a college for women, or how “Solar Hill” got its name. I also had no idea that there were so many of the “Tennessee Virginia” markers along the center of State Street. I thought there was just one.
If you want to learn more about Bristol from the legendary Bud Phillips himself. Go to YouTube and search “Bud Phillips Bristol”. There are several videos on there of him talking about all of the work that he did over his lifetime to document the history of these fascinating sister cities.
Have fun and good luck!!!