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Sesquicentennial trips in Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama and North Carolina
Region is steeped in blue and gray Civil War history
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Remember what fresh air really tastes like in North Carolina's parks
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The state boasts many large, historic parks in close proximity
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Where nature meets history

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    A suspension bridge affords hikers a unique view of the creek below near Piney Falls at Fall Creek Falls State Park.
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Outdoor lovers won't be able to get enough of Fall Creek Falls State Park, located in Pikeville, Tenn., less than 60 miles from Chattanooga. This little town, where history and tradition rule, is located in the north Sequatchie Valley. Looking to listen to bluegrass, visit a working apple orchard or experience acres of natural beauty? Pikeville has it all.

-- Compiled by staff writer Holly Leber

BEST THING TO DO

Don't Go Chasing Waterfalls -- Fall Creek Falls State Park was voted best state park in the Southeastern United States.

• At 256 feet, Fall Creek Falls is the highest waterfall in the Eastern United States.

• 2,600 acres with campgrounds on the western edge of the Cumberland Plateau.

• Scenic beauty with waterfalls, canyons and forests.

Includes cabins, golf course.

Source: www.tn.gov/environment/parks/FallCreekFalls

Best kept Secret

In Time for the School Bell -- The old Lincoln School, a one-room schoolhouse where minority students attended school.

• The school now is used as a community and meeting center, as well as a music venue.

• Built in 1925.

Source: Dr. Greg Harwood, president, Bledsoe County Chamber of Commerce

Pikeville peek

• Population: 2,000

• Biggest employers: The state of Tennessee, Bledsoe County school system

• Landmarks or geographic features: Historic Cranwell mansion, built from rock, with interior woodwork from Europe.

• History: Est. 1830, Pikeville was named for a gentleman by the name of Pike. Earliest industries included milling.

• Most famous residents: Carrie Hassler, bluegrass musician.

Local Events

• July 4th is celebrated in the town square each year on the Saturday closest to Independence Day.

• A candlelight walk heralds the beginning of the holiday season each December. The businesses stay open later, food samples are given away and carriage rides are available.

• The Autumn Gold Festival in nearby Coker Creek celebrates fall with arts and crafts, a classic car show, gold panning, wagon rides and more.

• The first weekend in September is Mountaineer Folk Festival at Fall Creek Falls State Park. The festival boasts demonstrations of folk arts, crafts, live music and more.

Source: Pikeville Mayor's Office,

www.southeasttennessee.com

BEST PLACE TO EAT

Maggie, I Couldn't Have Eaten Any More -- A café/diner on Main Street, Little Maggie's is a choice location for anyone looking to get a bite in Pikeville.

• Stay and sit or get takeaway before heading to the state park.

• Singer/songwriter Carrie Hassler is part owner.

Source: Pikeville Mayor's office

SOMETHING ELSE TO DO

Pick a little, talk a little

•Wooden’s Apple House, on Walden’s Ridge, offers more than 18 varieties of apples.

•From August to November, enjoy homemade cider, pies, doughnuts and more.

•Souvenirs and crafts are available in the onsite general store.

Source: Dr. Greg Harwood, president, Bledsoe County Chamber of Commerce

FESTIVAL

Crafts, cars, food and firecrackers

•July 4th is celebrated in the town square each year on the Saturday closest to Independence Day.

•A candlelight walk heralds the beginning of the holiday season each December. The businesses stay open later, food samples are given away and carriage rides are available.

•The Autumn Gold Festival in nearby Coker Creek celebrates fall with arts and crafts, a classic car show, gold panning, wagon rides and more.

•The first weekend each September is Mountaineer Folk Festival at Fall Creek Falls State Park. The festival boasts demonstrations of folk arts like blacksmithing, crafts, live music, wagon rides, food and more.

Source: www.southeasttennessee.com