National Travel & Tourism Week, May 2-10 this year, is a good time to begin blogging about the wonderful tourism assets in the Morristown/Hamblen County area. Here’s an overview of some of the great things you’ll find when you visit the Morristown/Hamblen County area. In future blogs, I’ll go into more detail on specific attractions, businesses and events.
Nestled in the Tennessee Valley between Great Smoky Mountains National Park and Cumberland Gap National Historic Park, Morristown is surrounded by gently rolling hills and two of the Tennessee Valley Authority’s most beautiful reservoirs, Cherokee Lake and Douglas Lake. Known as the “Crossroads of Dixie” because of the intersecting of the main road between Baltimore and Knoxville, and the buffalo trail from Cumberland Gap, Morristown is centrally located between Bristol and Knoxville.
Cherokee Lake is a popular recreation destination in the Lakeway Area. Along its shoreline are public access areas, county and municipal parks, commercial boat docks and campgrounds, Panther Creek State Park, and a state wildlife management area. Fishing is popular at Cherokee. The reservoir’s fish population is very similar to that found in other east Tennessee lakes — black bass, sauger, walleye, crappie, various sunfish, and the usual rough-fish species. Many fishing tournaments are held on Cherokee every year.
American frontiersman and Tennessee legend Davy Crockett spent his formative years in Morristown where his parents owned and operated a tavern. A replica of that 1790’s building sits on the original site. Now known as the Crockett Tavern Museum, it’s a not-to-be-missed stop while in Morristown. Civil War history abounds at the General Longstreet Museum in near-by Russellville. One of two locations on the Tennessee Civil War Trail, the museum has a vast collection of artifacts from the harsh winter of 1863-64 as well as a top-notch Civil War reference library.
Special events are, well, special in Morristown. Each April low-riders from across the country gather in Cherokee Park for the annual Lay’d Out at the Park car show. In May the Morristown Strawberry Festival pays tribute to everyone’s favorite juicy, delicious red berry, and June is the month when disc golfers gather to test their skill on our three disc golf courses at the Tennessee State Disc Golf Championships. The crown jewel of special events in Morristown has taken place every fourth weekend in October at the historic Rose Center for over 40 years. The Mountain Makins Festival is a two-day celebration of Appalachian culture and life that has consistently been named at Top 20 Event in the Southeast by the Southeast Tourism Society and a Great Escape by the New York Times.
Whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure, history and heritage, a quaint downtown full of unique shopping and dining or a laid-back, relaxed get-away, we think you’ll agree there’s only one destination – Morristown, TN.