Fall 2005


This has been a most unusual and thoroughly enjoyable summer for us and we hope it has been for you also. For the first time in 35 years, we have come home in the evening and been able to sit down and have a meal together— at dinner time! Of course, there was a down side to that. It meant we had to get back in the swing of things and learn to cook something besides fish and hushpuppies.

Of course, the weather hasn’t been conducive to sitting outside much this summer; but with the less humid weather the last week or so our porch has been getting some heavy use. It’s so delightful to eat breakfast outside while enjoying the flowers in our yard and in our hanging baskets. Occasionally we are graced with a visit from one of our hummingbirds. The lantana, verbena and trailing geranium baskets seem to be the favorite filling stations. They will flit from one to the other sampling the nectar and trying to decide on their favorite.

Our cats often will decide to keep us company while we relax in our lawn chairs in the evening. Since we have one extra chair on the porch, they seem to race to see who can appropriate it first — and they do not share well! In case you haven’t gotten the message, we are enjoying our semi-retirement very much. We are still staying busy—some days too busy, but we surely are enjoying our free time.

Bob has kept the roses and other flower gardens in full bloom this summer as well as helping with raising the trout and campground maintenance. Anthony Smith has done a great job keeping up with the mowing and trimming that needed to be done. Since classes have started at Roane State this fall, Tyler Guldan and Andy Bean will be helping him on Saturdays and the three of them will keep “The Cricket” looking as beautiful as ever.

There is so much to look forward to in October. The trees with their spectacular display of gold, red, and purple leaves seem to be in competition for most outstanding. They provide a performance that is almost unmatched in nature. On a calm day, when the color filled trees are reflected in the smooth surface of the catfish lake and the ducks are gliding over the surface of the water like wind blown pieces of fluff , it’s hard to imagine a more beautiful place than East Tennessee and “The Crosseyed Cricket” in the fall.

October also brings our annual Knapp-In. This year will be the 6th annual Clinch River Knapp-In and it will again take place here at “The Cricket” the weekend of Oct. 14th, 15th and 16th. For those of you who might have somehow missed this event in the past and are wondering what in the world it is we will try to enlighten you. Knapping is the art of making arrowheads. Although the Knapp-In is built around this art there are plenty of other primitive crafts demonstrated and displayed. People come from around the country to share their knowledge, enjoyment and proficiency and are happy to welcome you into their world. As well as crafting arrowheads, there are demonstrations on many Native American crafts including Bow and Arrows, Cordage, Blow Guns , primitive fire-making and a pottery demonstration . Some my favorite pieces of handwork are the dream catchers, stone-crafted knives and animals, and jewelry made with beautiful and colorful stones.

Vendors at the Knapp-In aren’t limited to crafts — they put out some mighty good food too! Last year the bar-b-cue sandwich was one of the all-time favorites. There are cold drinks, snacks and of course sweets of some kind. The Knapp-In is open Fri. and Sat. Oct. 14th and 15th 9:00 A.M. till dark , and Sun. Oct. 16th 9: A.M. till approximately 4:00 P.M.

One of the highlights of the weekend will be the International Altal-Altal spear throwing contest which will be taking place all day on Saturday. The entire weekend is filled with an array of fascinating and new sights and experiences and is a time of learning as well as just plain old fun. For more information go to their website at www.knology.net/~clinchriver

For that one weekend there will not be any campsites open to the public.

Speaking of the campground — it remains open year-round. Although with our semi-retirement we closed the restaurant and fishing we have kept the campground open. People continue to enjoy the peace and beauty that surrounds them here. There are plenty of activities with the horseshoes, tetherball, swings, climbing cabin, canoes and paddle-boats. If you want some more exercise, you can always take a walk around the lakes.

Fall is a perfect time to go camping. The cooler crisp air in the morning and evening coupled with the warm afternoons makes for a fantastic get-a-way. The smell of the wood fire and the crackle of the flames is a good background for the laughter and conversation of family and friends. Roasted hot dogs and nicely browned marshmallows taste so much better when shared with people we love.

Although our hayride and the accompanying festivities that our Christmas Tree Plantation involved will not be available this year , our Christmas Tree Plantation will still be open to the public. We will have saws available and you will be able to drive up and choose and cut your tree. We have some beautiful trees ready this year — White Pine, Scotch Pine and some Spruce. Toward the end of Nov. we will put a special message on our voice mailbox giving you more information on dates and times the plantation will be open. That number is 865-986-5435 .

We miss seeing all of the many friends that we have made the last 34 years at the restaurant and fish out; however, we are enjoying this period of our life very much. We hope and pray that your lives are full and joyful and that your memories are and will be happy and treasured. Remember —–keep making those memories. They are precious!

“May grace (which is God’s unmerited favor) and spiritual peace (which means peace with God and harmony, unity and undisturbedness) be yours from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ.” Ephesians 1:2 Amplified Bible


Charlie Cricket says, "Come to the Crosseyed Cricket!"