Calendar of Events

Tuesday, February 28, 2023

Friends of the Knox County Public Library: 2023 Wilma Dykeman Stokely Lecture

  • February 28, 2023
  • 7:00PM

Category: Free event, Lecture, panel and Literature, spoken word, writing

Where did the hillbilly archetype come from, and why has it endured for more than 100 years? How does it relate to the exploitation of the land and people who live there? How do Appalachian people view themselves as a result of these negative portrayals, and what is the impact on the rest of America?

Those questions are at the heart of the 2023 Wilma Dykeman Stokely Memorial Lecture on Tuesday, February 28 at 7 pm at the Bijou Theater, 803 S. Gay Street, Knoxville, TN 37902. Director and producer Ashley York and documentary filmmaker Elaine McMillion Sheldon will address the portrayal of Appalachian culture in film and will discuss their current projects.

The event is free and open to the public. Registration is encouraged but not required.

York, a Kentucky native, is the co-director of the documentary hillbilly, which uses personal narrative, regional history, and conversations with Appalachians to challenge pervasive perceptions of the region. The film was funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and filmed in Tennessee, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, West Virginia, and California.

Sheldon, an assistant professor of cinema studies at the University of Tennessee, is the director of Heroin(e) and Recovery Boys, two Netflix original documentaries that explore America's opioid crisis. Her feature-length documentary, King Coal, will premiere at the 2023 Sundance Film Festival.

The lecture is hosted by Friends of the Knox County Public Library, the John C. Hodges Society of the University of Tennessee Libraries, and UT's Cinema Studies Program. The lecture honors the late Wilma Dykeman Stokely (1920–2006), writer, speaker, teacher, historian, environmentalist, and long-time friend of the Knox County Public Library.

Friends of the Knox County Public Library: 865-215-8775 or

Union Ave Books: Launch Party with Kelly Smith Trimble

  • February 28, 2023
  • 5:30PM

Category: Culinary arts, food, Free event and Literature, spoken word, writing

Union Ave Books is excited to present a launch party with Kelly Smith Trimble in honor of her newest title, The Creative Vegetable Gardener. This event will take place on the book’s release date, February 28, 2023 @ 5:30.

We would like to thank Vid'l in the Old City (111 E Jackson Ave) for supporting us by hosting this event!

While this is a *free* event, we ask that you register for your spot at this link.

Kelly Smith Trimble is an editor, writer, and gardener from Knoxville, Tennessee. Her book Vegetable Gardening Wisdom (Storey, 2019) is a collection of seasonal advice and inspiration for edible gardeners. Her second book, The Creative Vegetable Gardener, will be released by Storey in early 2023. Kelly’s career in lifestyle media spans 20+ years with work for brands including Southern Living, Lowe’s, Bonnie Plants, the National Park Foundation, and HGTV. Her real-life vegetable gardening advice has helped thousands of gardeners learn to grow — in skill, confidence, and joy for the practice. Kelly holds a B.A. in English with a concentration in Environmental Studies from Sewanee: The University of the South, and an M.S. in Environmental Studies with an emphasis in writing and communications from Green Mountain College (now the Green Mountain Center for Sustainability at Prescott College). She is a certified master gardener through Auburn University in Alabama.

Union Ave Books, 517 Union Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37902. Information: 865-951-2180,

Pellissippi State: Conversation with a Legend

  • February 28, 2023
  • 2 PM

Category: Free event, History, heritage and Lecture, panel

Pellissippi State Community College President L. Anthony Wise, Jr. will sit down and interview the Rev. Harold Middlebrook in a potent conversation about race, culture and civil rights. Middlebrook was an aide and confidant to the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., and he has an impressive history advocating for civil rights throughout his life.

The two men will discuss social issues and Rev. Middlebrook's perspective on contemporary national events. A Q&A session will follow their discussion, and the college community is encouraged to engage with this living legend.

Free admission

Hardin Valley Campus of Pellissippi State: 10915 Hardin Valley Road, Knoxville, TN 37932. Bagwell Center Gallery hours: M-F 9-5. Information: 865-694-6405,

The Central Collective: Knoxville Songcraft! with Travis Tench

  • February 28, 2023

Category: Classes, workshops and Music

A few can touch the magic string
And Fame is proud to win them—
Alas for those that never sing,
But die with all their music in them!
—Oliver Wendell Holmes, “The Voiceless.”

Come put to words to music and connect with other creatives as we delve into the process of songwriting. This workshop is open to all levels—from beginners and non-musicians to seasoned songwriters. We’ll help you add to your proverbial toolboxes, hone the skills to finish songs, and practice habits that lead to better storytelling. Workshop will be held every last Tuesday of the month and each session will focus on one particular aspect of songwriting that we’ll dissect and practice together in a safe creative environment, checking The Critic at the door. Knoxville Songcraft is organized by Travis Tench, guitarist and lead singer of the band Tinca Tinca and producer at Oak Hill Audio.

BYOBeverages at 6pm for shmoozing hour: bring any ideas, songs in progress, or questions that might help you in your creative journey.
Workshop from 7-9pm.
Bring pen and paper/notebook. Instrument optional.

Location: Central Collective, 923 N Central Street, 37917
Cost: $20 (at the door or via venmo @Travis-Tench)

McClung Museum: Lecture with Dr. Anneke Janzen

Category: Free event, History, heritage and Lecture, panel

6 PM
"Archaeological Insights into Eastern Africa's Earliest Herders"
Event by Archaeological Institute of America - East Tennessee Society
In McClung Museum Auditorium

Pivot Point Gallery: Silas Reynolds

Category: Exhibitions, visual art and Free event

Silas Reynolds is a self-taught artist from Morristown, TN, known for his bold and vibrant abstract paintings. He currently resides in Knoxville, TN, where he continues to create his energetic works of art. As a second-generation artist, Silas had a passion for creativity from a very young age and began drawing as a child. It wasn't until his mid-twenties that Silas commenced painting, and he quickly became captivated by the freedom of abstract expressionism, which allowed him to express himself in a unique way. He uses bold colors and shapes over multiple layers to create depth and texture, using acrylic and spray paint as his primary mediums. He draws inspiration from nature, fashion, and design and is influenced by artists such as Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Alex Brewer. Silas believes that art is open to interpretation and encourages viewers to explore their own personal meanings and connections within his pieces.

Silas will be opening his show in our Guest Gallery this Saturday from 2 to 5pm. Come see his incredible work and hear his story of his work.

Hours: Friday through Sunday 11am to 5pm

Pivot Point Gallery, 15 Emory Place, Knoxville, TN 37917. Information: 865-248-0050,

River & Rail Theatre Company: The Mountaintop

Category: History, heritage and Theatre

February 17 - March 5: THE MOUNTAINTOP by Katori Hall

What was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. thinking about as he sat on his stiff, polyester-covered bed at the Lorraine Motel on his last night alive? Did he have any idea what was about to happen? What would he have wanted people to know about him? Katori Hall takes a stunning look at all of these questions and fills them in with brilliant imagination in her play THE MOUNTAINTOP. A speech, a storm, a visitation, a vision: how does a hero's journey end?


River & Rail Theatre, 111 State Street, Knoxville, TN 37902. Information: 865-407-0727,

Knoxville Children's Theatre: Disney's Beauty and the Beast, Jr.

Category: Kids, family and Theatre

The classic story tells of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed to his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will be doomed for all eternity.

Performances are Thu-Sun; tickets at

Knoxville Children's Theatre, 109 E. Churchwell Avenue, Knoxville, TN 37917. Information: 865-208-3677,

TVUUC: Exhibition by Lisa Kurtz & Kate McCullough

  • February 12, 2023 — April 6, 2023

Category: Exhibitions, visual art, Fine Crafts and Free event

Art Exhibit at Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church, Free and open to the public
Reception Fri Feb 17, 6-7:30 PM with artists' talks at 6:30 PM

Lisa Kurtz
I have made wall pieces out of clay since way back in graduate school. Before I made pottery, I painted, so I often think of these wall pieces as clay canvases or clay landscapes with texture. I also like to add mixed media to some of my wall pieces, such as driftwood, shells, and other found objects. All my clay wall art is wired on the back or mounted on wood and wired so that it hangs easily - just like a painting would. I also love to make clay wall pouches, which can hold water and be used as wall vases for flowers. I have worked with clay for over 40 years and fell in love with the fluid and impressionable characteristics of this wonderful medium in college. Rocks and water have always inspired me. I love the streams running through the mountains, and I also love the ocean. I am fascinated by the effect that water has on the earth and the calming effect water has on people. The textures and colors in water, sand, sea birds, shells, rocks, and marine creatures inform my work and my glazes. I mix up all my own glazes and am often tweaking them to highlight the textures that I put on my pieces. My goal is to infuse my work with the peaceful feelings that water worn rocks, landscape, and waves give to me and share those feelings with others through my art.

Kate McCullough
I began painting in watercolor about 20 years ago after a 35-year hiatus from art. Initially my studies at Villa Marie College and SUNY College at Buffalo included general design, art history and oil and acrylic painting. When I returned to painting, I decided that watercolor was a medium that I would like to explore. I immediately fell in love with it and I have not looked back. I started with courses with Marcia Goldenstein and Whitney Leland at UT and then moved on to workshops at Arrowmont with Don Lake and Sue Archer, Kanuga with Linda Baker and Don Andrews, Cheap Joe’s with Linda Kemp, three workshops with John Salminen and a couple with Paul Jackson. I presently teach a watercolor class at the Fountain City Art Center. I am the former president of the Knoxville Watercolor Society, a member of the Art Market Gallery in downtown Knoxville, a signature member of the Tennessee Watercolor Society.

Gallery hours: Mon-Thu 9:30-4:30, Sun 9-1.
Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church Gallery, 2931 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37918

Fountain City Art Center: Open Show – Wall of Fame

Category: Exhibitions, visual art, Fine Crafts and Free event

Fountain City Art Center, 213 Hotel Ave, Knoxville, TN 37918. Hours: Tue-Thu 10 AM - 4 PM. Information: 865-357-2787,

Pellissippi State: All for One or Whatever … by Tom Wegrzynowski

  • February 9, 2023 — March 2, 2023

Category: Exhibitions, visual art, Fine Crafts and Free event

Fans of artist Tom Wegrzynowski can see oil paintings from both his “Lucky” series and his “Entertainment” series in a new exhibit at Pellissippi State Community College. “All for One or Whatever …” is the artist’s first exhibition that combines pieces from both his bodies of work, “a visual dialogue that presents new opportunities for finding meaning,” Wegrzynowski said in an artist statement for the show.

The new exhibit is on display through March 2 at the Bagwell Center for Media and Art Gallery, 10915 Hardin Valley Road, Knoxville. Gallery hours are 9 a.m.-5 p.m. Mondays through Fridays or by special appointment. All exhibits in the Bagwell Gallery are free and open to the public.

A closing reception with the artist is scheduled for 3-4 p.m. Thursday, March 2.

Wegrzynowski is a full-time instructor of Art and Art History at the University of Alabama, where he received his Master of Fine Arts in 2006. He has exhibited his work regionally and nationally and won several awards including the Reese Museum Award in 2022 International FL3TCH3R Exhibit: Social & Politically Engaged Art, East Tennessee State University. Wegrzynowski’s exhibit at Pellissippi State includes 19 oil paintings from his “Lucky” series, which explores history, mythology and how mutable these structures are when placed in the service of power, as well as from his “Entertainment” series, which allows Wegrzynowski to paint in a faster, more spontaneous way. “The first Entertainment paintings, or ‘panels’ as I think of them, were each executed in one sitting, sometimes in as little as an hour,” Wegrzynowski explained, as opposed to the works in the “Lucky” series, which could take months or even years to complete. “Most of these images were taken from screen captures of television commercials or movies, creating fragments of meaning. As such, they create opportunities for a more expansive investigation of the space between representation and formal abstraction.”

Hardin Valley Campus of Pellissippi State: 10915 Hardin Valley Road, Knoxville, TN 37932. Bagwell Center Gallery hours: M-F 9-5 or by appointment. Information: 865-694-6405,

Bennett: Flowers - A Group Art Show

  • February 6, 2023 — February 28, 2023

Category: Exhibitions, visual art and Free event

Featuring art by Richard Jolley, Tommie Rush, Andrew Saftel, Margaret Scanlan, Maggie Taylor, Kliszewski Glass, Jurgen Dopatka, and others!

Bennett, 5308 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919. Hours: M-Sa 10-5:30. Information: 865-584-6791,

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