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- [Narrator] Tennessee Crossroads is made possible in part by... - [Presenter] You can't predict the future, but you can count on Tennessee Tech always putting students first. Our faculty, staff and students have shown strength, compassion, patience and kindness during these trying times. For us, it's personal. That's what you can count on at Tennessee Tech. - This time on Tennessee Crossroads. We head to The Pharmacy in Nashville, where they fill tummies instead of prescriptions. Then, we'll discover the unfolding carousel dream of Ken Means in Franklin. We'll meet an award-winning baker in White House and finally discover how Dale Hollow dam tamed a mighty river. Mighty good show, if I do say so. I'm Joe Elmore. Welcome again to Tennessee Crossroads. The restaurant in our first story, was recently named one of Music City's best by the Nashville Scene Magazine. Well, Cindy Carter went to East Nashville to The Pharmacy to see if she agreed. Spoiler alert, she did. - [Cindy] In East Nashville, the prescription for a great burger can easily be filled at this neighborhood pharmacy, The Pharmacy Burger Parlor and Beer Garden, to be exact. - A lot of people say we're the best burger in Nashville. Something we don't take lightly, something we don't assume is the case. But it's really wonderful to hear that from our patrons. - [Cindy] And if that doesn't clue you into what the pharmacy specializes in, pay attention to the restaurant's full name and you've got a pretty good idea of what's on the menu. Great burgers, milkshakes and old-fashioned soda fountain drinks once found in most American pharmacies, as well as German wurst and beer selections that are often sipped and savored in this beautiful beer garden. - [Daniel] We have a large beer garden outback, which we think's one of the best outdoor spaces in Nashville. We really love hosting people out there. - Daniel Frasier is the Pharmacy Burger Parlor and Beer Garden's general manager. He's also a man who is very enthusiastic about burgers and this kitchen cooks up a lot of them, gourmet in every way. - So our top-seller is the Pharmacy Burger. That's our flagship. It's your classic with lettuce, tomato, pickles, onions yellow mustard with some cheddar cheese, just a great classic burger. But a newer addition to our menu which is our wide oak barbecue burger, one of my favorites. We make a house-made Coca-Cola barbecue sauce and we smoke our own onions on it to get that smoky flavor in the sauce. We also got some fried onions on top of there, some Gifford's bacon with pickles and provolone cheese. It's really, really lovely, really lovely. One of our more unique burgers is the Stroganoff burger which is our take on a Stroganoff bechamel. We use a mushroom bechamel cream sauce with caramelized onions, Swiss cheese, and a little sour cream. It's one of the more unique ones, I really enjoy. It's really lovely, especially in the fall and winter when you're wanting something a little hardy. - [Cindy] And that's just a taste of the burger offerings which include vegetarian selections such as the black bean burger and falafel burger. Just like an actual old-time pharmacy, this pharmacy gets creative with its milkshakes and sodas all dreamed up in their soda shop. Okay, so it's the restaurant's bar, but one that has plenty of family-friendly offerings. - [Daniel] Our creamsickle soda's one of our favorite, kind of a classic orange soda there. We also make a classic Pharmacy cream soda which is our take on a cream soda, that's one of my favorites. The mint phosphate is also really good, just a classic mint, really refreshing. And a lot of people also enjoy our ginger and our strawberry-ginger soda where we're using our fresh ginger to make our syrup. We use a little bit of jalapeno in there to give it an extra kick. - [Cindy] Sodas served with a few modern twists but they still use a vintage soda gun to ensure authenticity. - I'll make a Pharmacy cream soda to show. So we're gonna use our house-made vanilla and lemon syrups there, add a dash of some custom-made acid phosphate like they used to do in the old-timey days. That's when we're gonna add our soda from the authentic 1950's soda gun there. - Full disclosure, The Pharmacy was never an actual pharmacy but there was once a drug store located on the adjacent property. And when the owner of both properties was developing the land, he came across hundreds of these old-time pharmacy models. Thus the inspiration. A few of those bottles are displayed throughout the restaurant, along with other memorabilia to remind patrons The Pharmacy is local, part of the community. And that's exactly what owner, Cees Brinkman had in mind when he opened The Pharmacy in 2011. - And the neighbors initially, were somewhat of course against it, but later on they said, "You know, since you guys opened, people walk again after dark on the street with their kids." That is so beautiful and that's what my goal has been for this area and it worked out really well. - [Cindy] What has also worked out really well is the restaurant's beautiful Beer Garden. Cees believes a space like this can't help but attract locals who want to get together, have fun and connect. It's also a great place to enjoy the restaurant's very best of their wurst. - [Daniel] We smoke and pack and grind our own wurstchen in house, bratwurst and knackwurst and Bauernwurst and Jagerwurst. Burgers are definitely the main attraction but we like to think people come back for the sausages a lot of times. - [Cindy] And of course this wouldn't be a German beer garden without, beer. - [Daniel] We don't serve any domestics here. We've got beer that we think can meet all tastes and styles. We wanna give you an experience that maybe, it's familiar, it feels homey, but it's also gonna be slightly different. - [Cindy] The Pharmacy Burger Parlor and Beer Garden has a little something for everyone. So if you find yourself at East Nashville, hungry for good food and a really cool atmosphere, this pharmacy has just what the doctor ordered. - Thanks Cindy. You know, there's something magical about an old-time carousel. Something that inspired an artist to take on the task of building his own. Ken Means is reviving an almost lost art form while following his longtime dream. - You can't go into a carousel and walk out and not be a little happier. And that's what I wanna leave behind. - [Joe] If you take a rotary ride into a special chapter of history, you'll discover the golden age of carousels from 1880 to 1930. While thousands of classic wooden models were built and operated during the era, today, less than 200 are still running. One is in Memphis. It was built by a Gustav Dentzel in 1909, recently restored and now housed in the Memphis Children's Museum. In the late 1990s, famed Nashville native artist, Red Grooms created his own quirky, untraditional carousel. Instead of horses or other animals, you rode on images of historical Tennessee characters. While the ride was short, the carousel spirit lives on. Well, here at The Factory in Franklin, you can witness the creation of the latest Tennessee carousel. It's a soon-to-be finished long-term dream of an artist named Ken Means. - [Ken] I started out as an oil painter, portraits and that sort of thing. And then I went into scenic art. I did some scenes for movies and plays, I did several, well, quite a number of plays. Started carving as kind of a hobby. - [Joe] Ken Means is a veteran artist whose talent covers the gamut. When he and wife, Betty, moved from Oregon to Franklin to be closer to their kids, Ken brought along 20 completed carousel animals with more to come. His collection is unique because most of the colorful creatures are named after animals in popular stories. - [Ken] Hidalgo in the back corner there, is from a true life story of a horse, Indian pony that did a race across Africa. I did Prince Valiant's horse, that black one way in the back. Prince Valiant was the son of King Arthur. So when I did Prince Valiant's horse, I did King Arthur's horse. - [Joe] Then, there's the largest member of his menagerie, this hardy and hefty lion. - [Ken] Aslan, he's from the Bell Book and Candle series, the big huge lion that's in that. - [Joe] From each animal idea, Ken creates a sketch which may or may not look like the finished piece. - The drawings are just to get the pieces going. That's the rough idea, build him off of that and then when I'm carving away, "Well, we'll make this change, we'll do that." You'll see changes from the lion to the lion. - [Joe] When it's time to start putting those carving tools to use, the head always comes first. - I try to get the personality of the animal to start with. I don't look for realism as much as I do the essence of the animal. If I can capture the look of the goat, the essence of the goat, that's what I'm after. The bodies are usually the last part on all the animals. The bodies are hollow, like that one over there. The necks are hollow, and on the big animals, even the heads are hollow. - [Joe] Inside the hollow bodies, Ken places a time capsule of sorts, pictures, a poem, maybe. Just a way of leaving a piece of the present for the future. - The reason for that being was, I've done a lot of restoration work. You know, by the time I break something open and look inside, there's nothing there. In one, I found some shredded newspaper and in another one I found a big rat . - [Joe] Needless to say, he gets lots of attention from passersby. To wide-eyed youngsters, the colorful, whimsical characters can be irresistible. - [Ken] Probably have at least, minimum, 100 kids. - [Joe] Is that right, and you don't mind, huh? - No, heck no, that's what it's all about, you know? You go to a museum or you go to a gallery or you go someplace and you can't touch anything, you can't take pictures. Not here. You know, kids come in and they go crazy and they put their fingers all over it and I'm cleaning windows and horses every day . And that's what I wanna leave behind, something that people can use for 100 years. These animals are built strong enough to withstand, with care, 100 years or more. - [Joe] Before long, Ken will have completed 32 carousel creatures, 11 standers or stationary animals, 21 jumpers, the ones that move up and down, and two chariots. One of which will be wheelchair compatible. So soon, his merry-go-round menagerie will need a home. - We're looking for a place to put it. I like Cheekwood, I like Franklin. You know, somewhere between there and here. Then I can walk away and feel that I've left a a contribution to society that everybody can enjoy. - Now here's an update on Ken's project. Developers at the factory now have plans to construct a building on the property just to house the completed carousel, good news. You know, we all have recipes that have been handed down from generation to generation. Well, Grandma's kitchen is where the award-winning baker in our next story got many of her sweet ideas. Alex Denis found her at the Southern Charm Bakery. - [Alex] Flour, frosting, batter, and bake. Courtney Luckett has mastered the perfect recipe, creating Southern Charm Bakery. - [Courtney] Right, what else can I get for you today? - [Alex] As owner, baker and decorator, her sweet disposition is matched only by her sweet treats and the care she shows her customers. - It's not just the cakes. You are two away, my dear. It's the relationships that we build with people that come in. - [Alex] You're baking with love? - Absolutely, all day, every day. It's, "How can this one cake make somebody's day better?" - [Alex] It's the heartbeat of her being. Born from the memories she made as a child with her grandmother. - She started teaching me her recipes and started teaching me to decorate some things. She and I were able to spend a lot of time together. After my grandmother passed away, I stopped baking, stopped decorating, stopped doing anything. It was really hard. - [Alex] Until the day, Luckett noticed a handwritten message from her inspiration, inspiring her to get back to baking. - The very cover of one of the cookbooks that says, "Courtney use these and do great things, God has a plan for you." Oh, you talk about... I cried and I cried and I cried. And then I picked myself up and close to a month later, I quit my job in the corporate world and started doing cakes out of my home. - Thanks in part to her grandmother's recipes, her business has grown into this, numerous flavors of cheesecake squares and cakes fill the cases, and shoppers can choose between rows of cupcakes. You can't go wrong with one of their signature flavors, but if you're looking for a little something extra, try one of their specialties like strawberry margarita. - [Courtney] We normally rotate those out. We have a website so you can find those other flavors and everything on our website of what we have for the day. - [Alex] Hours of preparation takes place here at all hours of the day. The process is meticulous from the first measure to the last sprinkle. Luckett's attention to detail, ensures every treat is top-notch and that takes time. - [Courtney] Three-tier, four-tier, depending on the level of difficulty, takes anywhere from four to six hours. So I could not do this by myself at all. So we have a team of people that come in, we have people that come in and follow the recipes and bake overnight, in the afternoons, in the evenings. - [Alex] But there are some recipes near and dear to Luckett that only she knows how to create. - [Courtney] A couple of my different pies, my employees don't make those. I will actually make those because that's what sets it apart. I have a chocolate chess pie that I bake, and that's what sets it apart, is that little bit of secret ingredient. And I will not share it with anyone. One day I will whisper it and say, "This is what this is," but I haven't gotten there yet . - [Alex] Whatever the secret ingredient is, it's working for Luckett. Her flair for flavor has captured the eyes and stomachs of those in town and celebrities alike. - One of the cakes that has taken us the longest, it took about 16 hours, was actually Kid Rock, his 50th birthday cake that he celebrated this past February. - [Alex] Luckett's ability also landed her on two national cooking shows. The first, Bakers vs. Fakers, where she had to hide her true identity. - [Courtney] That one was super intense. You think of, like a football game and how intense it is, it's like that on a scale times 10. - [Alex] She took home the top prize. - [Courtney] I was flabbergasted. I was like, "No, no, really, no." - [Alex] She did it all over again on Bake It Like Buddy. This time her mother joined. They used her grandmother's coconut cake recipe. - [Courtney] We actually had cherries, maraschino cherries. It gives it just a little bit of sweetness and a little bit of different texture in it. So it definitely sets it apart. - [Alex] She experienced the sweet taste of victory for a second time. Challenges like these, keep Luckett and her team rising to the occasion. Custom orders are the icing on the cake. - [Courtney] We do sequins, we do hand painting, we do marbling. Oh gosh, the sky's the limit. If you can think of it and say, "Okay, this is what I want," then we can make it happen. - [Alex] Pleasing customers is why she's in business, making memories they'll cherish long after her cakes are enjoyed. - Now you're in here with us for a very short time. Most of the time it's four or five minutes. But the impact that you know, people leave with, is what God calls us to do. So that's me and our entire staff just making my grandmother proud. - Well, finally, Tennessee has more than its share of beautiful rivers. They're less beautiful when they overflow their banks though, and destroy lives and property. Well, that was the case with the Obey River until the Dale Hollow Dam tamed it and provided a fantastic recreational area. Ed Jones, has the story. - Dale Hollow is known as a vacation destination. We protect it jealously. We have the beautiful pristine shoreline and forested hillsides. We're very proud of our lake and what we do here. People will come out and recreate and enjoy and you never think what this was like before Dale Hollow was here. - [Ed] Sandra Carmen has thought a lot about what was here before Dale Hollow Dam tamed the Obey River. As a park ranger, she knows more than most about what was gained and what was lost. - William Dale came to this area. He married a lady out of Willow Grove, Rachel Irons. They bought a 449 acre farm in 1808 and it is told that they're still within the Dale family until 1942 when the dam was begun and the lake began. - [Ed] That beginning marked the end of a way of life for residents up river from Dale Hollow. - There were two major communities that were totally inundated, the Willow Grove community and the Lillydale community. So there were a lot of people that did sacrifice back then by giving their farms. The Corps of Engineers and the federal government relocated over 2,000 known grave sites onto private property. Of course those folks, they really did sacrifice quite a bit so that we can have what we have today. - It was hard times for those folks. All the families had to leave their farms where they had been for generations. You know, I could relate to that because I farm myself and it would be hard for me to leave my place. - [Ed] Dale Hollow Superintendent, Stanley Carter can also relate to their fate on a much more personal level. - My family, well, my mother's side and father's side, we are from the upper headwaters of the Obey River itself. And where my mother was born, it's underwater now. With that being said, with this dam being in place, it has saved millions upon millions of dollars just in flood control alone. Not to mention the hydroelectricity that we produce. - [Ed] Enough electricity to power a city of 45,000, power that was sorely needed back in '38 when the Army Corps of Engineers got the green light to begin planning the Mammoth Project. - March 2nd of 1942, construction began. It was completed in October of 1943, so it was record time. The dam, it is 200 feet tall, 1,717 feet wide. It goes straight down to bedrock, and on each side, it goes straight down to bedrock. - The original purpose for this dam was for flood control and power generation. One of the most interesting things that you're gonna see as we go downstairs, it's what we call the actuator cabinet. And the actuator cabinet is what opens and closes the gates, allowing more or less water into the turbine. We produce 18 megawatts of power per unit. We have three units which is 54 megawatts, it's what we're able to produce. - [Ed] The roar of the rushing water, the enormous size of the concrete mountain, holding back the Obey River. It's hard to fathom the sheer scale of it all, but then consider that this huge remote complex is just a tiny part of a nationwide electrical network known as the grid. - Several years ago, the whole Eastern Seaboard had all the blackouts. I was inside this powerhouse when that happened and we felt that, the generators. They started making these weird sounds. When you work here, you know what these units sound like and you know when something ain't right. So we just started doing some investigation and found out that we had a large section of the country that had blacked out. That was all the way up in New York, edge of Canada. We still felt it here. - [Ed] After the tour, you'll want to reconnect with the soothing natural wonders of the Dale Hollow Reservoir. - It is so large that even if you're out on a boat, even on the busiest times, there are places that you can go and tuck into a cove and be undisturbed. We do have over 27,000 acres of water and almost 25,000 acres of land. We have about 2.6 million visitors a year that come to Dale Hollow. We have 15 commercial marinas on the lake and two group camps. So with those commercial marinas, they can rent boats, houseboats, watercraft. So there is a lot of water sports that are available here. Because we have such crystal clear waters, we're very popular for scuba. We also manage and operate four class A campgrounds with over 400 camp sites. Everything from a tent site to an RV site with water and electric hookup. So you can get a away from the city experience. Come out and breathe the fresh air but it is just a jewel of Tennessee. It's just gorgeous. - Thanks, Ed. Now before we say goodbye, I got a few reminders for you. Don't forget to check out the new PBS video app where you can watch Crossroads and all your favorite PBS shows right on your phone, anywhere, anytime. Also, check out our website, TennesseeCrossroads.org. Follow us on Facebook and join us next week. See you then. - [Narrator] Tennessee Crossroads is made possible in part by... - [Presenter] You can't predict the future, but you can count on Tennessee Tech, always putting students first. Our faculty, staff and students have shown strength, compassion, patience and kindness during these trying times. For us, it's personal. That's what you can count on at Tennessee Tech.
November 10, 2022
Season 36 | Episode 16
Cindy Carter visits The Pharmacy restaurant in Nashville. Joe Elmore updates us on the unfolding carousel dream of Ken Means in Franklin. Alex Denis meets an award winning baker in White House. And Ed Jones discovers how Dale Hollow Dam tamed a mighty river.