I’ve been through Nashville more times that I can remember, but I’ve never stayed in the city. This was about to change. After our tour of Stones River, we headed to Nashville and Opryland. Trust me, we had no interest in Opryland, but the hotels are plentiful and cheap. We did try to go to a restaurant in Opryland — some German style get up — but we ran out! Yuck! After that, we found a *GREAT* little restaurant after a little searching — the Rosepepper Cantina. So many margaritas and some really fine Mexican fare. Not to mention some fun loving staff with, well let’s just say, East Nashville Flare :-).
The next day our mission was to visit Centennial Park and the Parthenon — what you say? The Parthenon? Isn’t that in Greece? Athens in particular? Well, yes, but there’s also a full scale replica in Nashville. You see, perhaps even before the Civil War and definitely after it, Nashville became known as the ‘Athens of the South’. One of the reasons for the growth of Nashville after the civil war was because it was occupied early by the Union and suffered very little of the damage done to other major southern cities by the subsequent battles to defeat the Confederacy. As such it had a big head start on become a centre for education and art. So much that when the centennial of the state was to occur in 1897 — a big celebration was planned. At this time, Centennial Park was created and was to be a celebration of the ‘world’. Many exhibits were created to model the wonders of the world and, of course, one of these was the Parthenon. The first version of the Parthenon was just a temporary structure intended to be torn down after the fair. However, it was so popular, that it was decided to build an enduring version, which became what we see today. In addition to the incredible external appearance, the building also houses a large number of pieces of art so it is also a very nice art museum.
Here are some photos that we took around the park and of the Parthenon: