published Monday, April 25th, 2011

Cornbread, ‘Dinosaurs’ on week’s agenda

LISA DENTON: Barry, it’s pinto bean time in South Pittsburg, Tenn. OK, technically, it’s the National Cornbread Festival, but you can’t have cornbread without pinto beans. (Well, you can, but you shouldn’t.)

Most everything takes place Saturday and Sunday. The big cook-off, which I’ve even judged a couple of times, is Saturday, and there are music performances, arts and crafts vendors and a carnival. Remind me to tell you sometime about my carnival experiences.

BARRY COURTER: Your last sentence will likely become someone’s best new pickup line in a bar. Based on my own reaction to reading it, I know I’m interested in hearing more.

Anyway, the cornbread festival in South Pittsburg is a good time for sure. They are having a buttermilk chugging contest as well. You entering? There aren’t many things that I won’t eat or drink, but buttermilk is one of them. Not even with cornbread and holding my nose.

LISA: Nope. That’s some South I won’t put in my mouth either. It almost feels un-Southern to admit it, but it’s true.

BARRY: Definitely.

LISA: I’m also intrigued by a new exhibit opening Saturday at Chattanooga Zoo called “Dinosaurs.” I thought it was about newspaper editors, but it’s actually life-size robotic replicas of Tyrannosaurus rex, triceratops and other prehistoric predators.

And don’t forget that Chattanooga Market opens Sunday.

BARRY: I do like the market. That means fresh veggies and fruits are on the way. There is something really great about eating stuff that was harvested that morning.

LISA: I know it’s a little early for strawberries, but I can’t wait till the crop comes in. And corn and peaches and okra ... Thankfully, the chocolate crop is always in season.

BARRY: The Chattanooga Traditional Jazz Festival is this weekend at the Choo Choo. Dixieland music lovers should check that out. You can get a taste Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Hunter Museum of American Art. A trio of musicians that will be here for the weekend will give a presentation. It’s free to Hunter members and $8 otherwise.

LISA: It ends with the Tennessee Barbecue Jam Session at 6:30 p.m. Sunday for a $35 ticket. I’m sure the jazz is great, but I’d go just for the barbecue.

Hey, is it lunchtime yet?

about Barry Courter...

Barry Courter is staff reporter and columnist for the Times Free Press. He started his journalism career at the Chattanooga News-Free Press in 1987. He covers primarily entertainment and events for ChattanoogaNow, as well as feature stories for the Life section. Born in Lafayette, Ind., Barry has lived in Chattanooga since 1968. He graduated from Notre Dame High School and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga with a degree in broadcast journalism. He previously was ...

about Lisa Denton...

Lisa Denton is deputy features editor and content editor of Current. She previously was a lifestyle, entertainment and region reporter/pod leader for The Chattanooga Times, which she joined in 1983. Lisa is from Sale Creek and holds an associate’s degree in journalism from Chattanooga State Community College. Contact Lisa at 423-757-6281 or

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