Don't have the PBS App? Click Here
- [Announcer] "Tennessee Crossroads" is made possible in part by. - [Phil] I'm Tennessee Tech President Phil Oldham. Here in Cookeville, Tennessee's college town, we are bold, fearless, confident, and kind. Tech prepares students for careers by making everyone's experience personal. We call that living wings up. Learn more at tntech.edu. - [Announcer] Discover Tennessee Trails and Byways. Discover Tennessee's adventure, cuisine, history, and more made in Tennessee experiences showcased among these 16 driving trails. More at tntrailsandbyways.com. - This time on "Tennessee Crossroads," you'll first meet the wandering llamas of Greenville. Then explore the National Museum of African-American Music in Nashville. And finally, visit a fun family getaway near Pickwick Dam in southwest Tennessee. Hi everybody, I'm Joe Elmore. That's the lineup for this edition of "Tennessee Crossroads." Sure glad to have you. I can't think of many things more peaceful than a little hike in the woods. Maybe the only thing that could make it better is if you could take that walk with a very gentle surefooted friend. In our first story, Miranda Cohen travels to Greenville, Tennessee to meet a very special lady and her wandering llamas. - [Miranda] You've heard it said that all who wander are not lost. And that is certainly true of Sandy Sagrillo and the Wandering Llamas of Greenville, Tennessee. Sandy was born in Connecticut and lived most of her life in Miami, running a very successful limousine business. To relieve the stress of the job, she often vacationed in the beautiful hills of Tennessee. And that is how it all started. - Well, I love to hike, but I actually took a llama trek on my own and I was not even into it 30 minutes and I had already fallen in love with llamas. I just, I'm an animal person. I thought they were so interesting and so sweet, and I just fell in love with them. - [Miranda] So in 1999, she traded her limousine for a llamasine, and started her hiking business called the Wandering Llamas, offering her clients a guided stroll through the forest with these gentle majestic lamas. - They're sweet, they're kind, they're funny, they're interesting. They're very smart. They have excellent memories and they're very easy to train. Okay, so everybody, in order to walk them properly, I like to have them held here and here. Just here and here, nice and loose. And they will just follow you and walk very easily. Well, you get your own llama to walk. I mean, you can walk them, you can pet them, you can take pictures with them. You can hug them, kiss them, feed them, give them snacks. They'll eat snacks right out of your mouth. - [Miranda] These beautiful and gentle creatures will saunter along beside you, peaceful and surefooted on the winding Tennessee trail. And whether you follow them or they follow you, it doesn't really matter. They are tranquil and regal, and they inspire just as much awe as these beautiful vistas themselves. - Llamas are so friendly. Some of them will like cuddle up next to you, they just walk easily with you. And it was honestly amazing. It was beautiful out here. - [Sandy] Well, I offer several different hikes. You can go on a two hour day hike. It's very flat, very easy. Anyone can do it. I have little children. I have older folks that do it. It's fun, it's beautiful. The trail is interesting. We have bridges to cross. The trees in the fall are spectacular, and spring, it's just all green and beautiful. And even in winter, I have another winter trail that I use, doesn't have any water crossings, so we don't have to get our feet wet. And it's just magnificent in the snow. I want people to de-stress and unwind and listen to the nature, listen to the creek because I find it so relaxing, and it's healthy. And you're getting exercise and you're getting out of your home and out of your office, and people need it. They're not out in nature enough. - When they are not wandering, they are nestled down here on Sagrillo's mountaintop home, grazing and frolicking with the pack. Sandy gets her very special llamas from all over the world. But as you can guess, when you get llamas together, well, you get other llamas. In fact, she is breeding, and she will have three more llamas later this year. - [Sandy] I've got 18 and I've got one due any day that she's pregnant. I've got another one due in spring and another one due in summer. They're addicting. They're like potato chips. You can't just have one llama. - And if you would like to spend even more time with the llamas, you can stay overnight at one of Sandy Sagrillo's two overnight accommodations here on her farm. A unique tree house with a magnificent view, or an itty-bitty kitty house where you might just have a bunk mate. Either way, you are guaranteed an up close and personal experience with the llamas. - They're fun, they're just friendly animals, and they're soft, they're like a giant dog to me. - [Miranda] And though you may not think of llamas as indigenous Tennessee creatures, it turns out they are making themselves quite at home. And we are certainly happy to have them. - [Sandy] Tennessee is gorgeous, they're very surefooted, and they can take on any trail with absolutely no problem at all. They cross water, they cross creeks, they can climb over rocks, they can jump over logs, they can go uphill, downhill. I mean, they can do anything. They're made for this. They're made for Tennessee. And this is a way for the whole family to get together and enjoy a nice, quiet, peaceful, relaxing event. And they just fall in love with them. And everybody falls in love with them. We call it falling in llama love. - Great story, Miranda. I bet that was a blast. - It was so much fun. I know you think I say this about every story I do, but truly that was one of my favorite stories, Sandy Sagrillo and her Wandering Llamas. And what a gorgeous part of the state. - Well we take great pride in the stories we share with you. We try our best to make them entertaining and occasionally life-changing. We hope we can count on you to keep Crossroads traveling. Well, this is it, folks, the final week of our campaign to keep us on the air. Now if you haven't pledged yet, please help us reach our goal. And if you have, well we thank you. Miranda, why don't you bring us up to date on where we stand? - Okay, Joe, we're getting there. So we set a goal of 400 contributions at any amount to keep Crossroads traveling throughout 2024. Reaching that goal means we'll keep "Tennessee Crossroads" on the air during Nashville Public Television's March Pledge Drive. Right now, we have heard from 279 viewers who have made the commitment to become supporters. - Well that's great, but we still have a ways to go, and we need your help to make it happen. A contribution of any amount will help us reach our goal of staying on the air next month and bringing great stories to you from across the state of Tennessee. Now, how long have you been a Crossroads viewer? One year? 10? Well, how about 37 years? Think of all the memories we've made together. We want to keep making those memories, don't you? But the clock is ticking, but I know we can count on you. Please call the number on your screen or pledge online at tennesseeCrossroads.org/donate. - We are so proud that you have made "Tennessee Crossroads" one of the most watched, locally produced programs in the entire PBS system. We certainly appreciate your loyalty and love being able to count on you as a member of the Crossroads team. You keep us on the road with your generous financial support, and now we have some wonderful ways to show you our appreciation when you make a pledge. - [Announcer] You can help keep Crossroads traveling with a financial gift that's just right for you. At $60 a year or $5 a month, we'll thank you with this "Tennessee Crossroads" trucker hat or beanie. At the $72 level or $6 a month, you can show your support with this polyester blend short sleeve T-shirt. Our limited edition T-shirt featuring the art of Steven Sloan can be yours for $8 a month. Or choose the limited edition hoodie for $13 a month. Finally, we'd love to see you at our annual whiskey tasting on Saturday, February 24th at NPT. Tickets are $65 or $125 for the VIP package, which includes special tastings, parking, and an extra hour of fun. Visit wnpt.org/events for details. And thank you for helping to keep Crossroads traveling. - Regardless of which gift you choose, you can take pride in the fact that you're helping provide quality family-friendly entertainment for the whole Volunteer State. Show that Volunteer spirit now by calling the number on your screen or going online at tennesseecrossroads.org/donate. You've helped make "Tennessee Crossroads" what it is today. And together we can continue to provide the stories you love. - We sure love bringing "Tennessee Crossroads" to you, and we know you love watching it. How would you like to meet the folks that make it happen? We would sure love to meet you. So we can do that. We're gonna have a fun-filled event here Saturday, February the 24th, right here at NPT. Here's what you can expect. - [Narrator] You are invited to "Tennessee Crossroads" annual whiskey tasting Saturday, February 24th, 2024, showcasing some of the best whiskey producers from Tennessee. Each distillery will feature two to three products with many of them hard to find. For tickets, use your phone to scan the QR code on your screen or go to wnpt.org/event. - That's gonna be a great time. And hopefully we can all celebrate reaching our Keep Crossroads Traveling goal of 400 contributions and keep us on the air in March. We're so thankful for our wonderful viewers, really. We constantly receive comments telling us how much you love the show. Your encouragement inspires us to keep searching for those great stories out there. And right now, we need your support to keep bringing you stories from the Mississippi up to the Smokies. Please pledge now. Thank you. - You know, one of the things I love about "Tennessee Crossroads" is how involved the viewers are. From sharing story ideas to visiting the places featured on the show, "Tennessee Crossroads" has become a trusted guide for new places to explore and people to meet. - You know something, time and time again, after we air a certain story, we get emails from folks featured that say they saw a huge jump in visitors after that story ran. Well I love the fact that we're able to recognize their hard work through the stories we share, but it's also a sign of how much our viewers value the show, which is something I'm pretty proud of. - Joe, you're so right. And we believe the success of the show is due to our viewers. You are the ones that make a difference, that make this show what it is. Whether it's your story ideas, loyal viewership, or the fact that folks really use the show to find a great place to visit. - So keep those ideas coming and I hope you'll take this opportunity to support the show that you've helped make possible with a contribution that is comfortable for you. We have lots of fun and a lot of fun ways to say thanks. Call the number on your screen or go online to tennesseecrossroads.org/donate. Thank you very much. Oh, and here's a final look at those gifts. - [Announcer] You can help keep Crossroads traveling with a financial gift that's just right for you. At $60 a year or $5 a month, we'll thank you with this "Tennessee Crossroads" trucker hat or beanie. At the $72 level or $6 a month, you can show your support with this polyester blend short sleeve T-shirt. Our limited edition T-shirt featuring the art of Steven Sloan can be yours for $8 a month. Or choose the limited edition hoodie for $13 a month. Finally, we'd love to see you at our annual whiskey tasting on Saturday, February 24th at NPT. Tickets are $65 or $125 for the VIP package, which includes special tastings, parking, and an extra hour of fun. Visit wpt.org/events for details and thank you for helping to keep Crossroads traveling. - Hey, we have some great news to wrap up the campaign. Vicki Yates, formerly with News Channel 5, will join us as the newest member of the Crossroads team, how about that? - That is amazing. Vicki Yates and Joe Elmore. I, I feel like I'm working with Nashville royalty. It's absolutely wonderful. Vicki, you are going to love working on the Crossroads Crew. It is so much fun. The crew is absolutely amazing. - Yep, we got the best. - We've all come from news, so we know the drill. There are no 5:00 deadlines. There's no getting up at 3:00 in the morning. No crazy standups. And all the stories are so much fun. - Yeah, by the way, Vicki, when you show up doing a news story, they all run? Well they're glad to see you when we show up. - That's true. Except they all wanna see you. Every time I show up, they all wonder where you are. So, speaking of stories, Joe, the Crossroads Mobile is gassed up. Where are we going next? - Well, just down the street to a Music City gem. Laura Faber's gonna take us to the National Museum of African-American Music. - [Laura] Music has always drawn people to Tennessee. From the neon lit honky-tonks in Nashville, the gospel, blues, and Jazz in Memphis, to bluegrass in the hills of east Tennessee. But now with the cut of a ribbon in January 2021, Tennessee is officially home to the world's first and only museum devoted to African-American music. And it sits at Fifth and Broadway in Nashville. - This is an idea whose arrival is long overdue. I think that a lot of musicians and historians have recognized that African-American music is fundamental to American identity, but it's taken 20 years to bring it to fruition. - [Laura] Curator Dr. Steven Lewis says the museum celebrates the role Black Americans played in shaping American music. And the flow of the physical layout of the museum is significant. - The river concept comes from the Langston Hughes poem, "The Negro Speaks of Rivers," and so what we've done is kind of organized the museum around the central corridor, which, like you said, we call the Rivers of Rhythm corridor as a way of number one, emphasizing the fluidity and the kind of hybridity of different musical traditions, and also showing that all these different styles of music are kind of traditions that flow out of a common core. We have our various galleries that kind of branch off. We have the Wade in the Water Gallery, which tells the story of African-American religious music, Crossroads Gallery, which tells the story of the blues, Love Supreme Gallery, telling the story of jazz, the one Nation Under Groove gallery, which tells the story of rhythm and blues. And then finally we have The Message which tells the story of hip hop. We tell a chronological historical story of how American music developed and evolved. So it's not a hall of fame, it's not focused on a particular artist. It really kind of walks us through American history and sort of what has been that soundtrack of the development of our country - [Laura] President and CEO Henry Hicks III believes the museum embraces the full definition of Music city, and says Nashville is the perfect place for it. - [Henry] We're Music City for a reason. I think the state's tourism slogan is in fact, "The soundtrack of America's made in Tennessee." And that is actually somewhat historically accurate. If you think about the rich tradition of the blues over in the western part of the state, and you think about the development and evolution of country music and even bluegrass music in the eastern part of the state, and then certainly gospel, religious music, R&B, and soul. in the middle part of the state here where we are in Nashville, you realize that that stuff was not an accident. It was because of that great migration that this culture became so rich with music in this particular state. And then evidence of that is the Phish Jubilee singers who certainly helped to bail out Phish University in its early years. They also were the first singing group in this country to ever go on world tour regardless of genre, regardless of race. - Within these 56,000 square feet, it does what no other museum does, displays how Black artists have fundamentally shaped American music over the past 400 years. For example, young British musicians in the 60s were listening to Muddy Waters, Chuck Berry, and Motown, and this banjo from West Africa influenced instruments used in country music. Dr. Lewis, so this is one of your favorite exhibits and why? - So this is a replica of a late 18th century banjo. It's made out of a gourd. And you see that the head is made out of goat skin, and we have kind of a wood plank here that serves as the neck. The reason why I like this banjo and this whole display case is that it really illustrates the way the banjo is kind of descended from these earlier instruments that come out of West and Central Africa. - [Laura] There are hundreds of other artifacts, like a gown worn by Whitney Houston, one of Ella Fitzgerald's Grammy Awards, BB King's Lucille, and a robe and wig from George Clinton. They all help represent 50 genres and styles of music. - And so we're really honored to have this here. - [Laura] But it's the interactivity of the museum that allows you to dive into the music. from a larger than life Prince "Purple Rain Performance," singing with Bobby Jones and his gospel choir, to laying down a hip hop track in a studio. You can actually take home all of it and more. For instance, everyone who visits the museum gets this bracelet, which allows them to create their own personal playlist of any of the songs that they hear while visiting. For instance, I've chosen Sly and the Family Stone. I wanna save those three songs, and I do it by swiping the bracelet, and then I download it all later once I'm at home. - [Henry] My first hope is that it brings people together. So much of the narrative that we see is that we're different. And what I hope this story tells is that we're not that different. We all love music. And I hope that people come away seeing that and willing to hug somebody, talk to somebody that maybe they wouldn't have been before they came into this museum. - [Laura] And now the legacy of the music we love is preserved forever in the heart of Music City. - Our last stop is a little piece of paradise near Pickwick Dam in southwest Tennessee. Jay and Cher Harrison built it in 2011 and named it the Outpost. Acclaimed for its delicious dining, it's also evolved into a unique complete family getaway. Pickwick Lake comprises the north end of the Tennessee Tombigbee waterway. It's a popular place for fishing and family getaways. And just a few miles north in Hardin County, Tennessee, you'll find this rustic settlement of sorts that beckons travelers to stop and stay a while. The Outpost grew from a single grocery store and bait shop to an award-winning restaurant and family destination. It began taking shape in 2011, thanks to the vision and hard work of Jay and Cher Harrison, a couple who followed their dream despite the doubts of naysayers, - We were told here, people pull up in the parking lot and tell us if we didn't sell alcohol or if we weren't open on Sundays, it wouldn't be open. But we believed and I kept feeling led to do it and to do something here also to give back. And that's how we wound up being over here. - [Joe] Thanks to his background in construction, Jay handled the sign and most of the muscle to build it. The Outpost restaurant had to be expanded several times to accommodate crowds of locals and lake visitors alike. - We just opened the first room of the restaurant with four tables, and we built a deck. So we enclosed the deck when we could several months later and built another deck. So I think that's our fourth deck, I believe. So we build one and then close it, build one, and then close it. - [Joe] Diners can enjoy breakfast and lunch six days a week. And the challenge may be what to choose. The extensive menu includes everything from juicy burgers to BLTs, from special salads to loaded spud. But the main menu item will arouse your senses as soon as you arrive. Their slow cooked barbecue has been hailed as some of the best in west Tennessee. - I guess growing up in Memphis, recognizing the barbecue over the years, I never realized why I paid so much attention to restaurants and good food in Memphis. But I also remember there's a difference in barbecue now in a lot of restaurants you go to. A lot of places, they cook differently than what we're used to. And we actually have gone back to the old way, and we do it still the way that I was taught years ago. - [Joe] Another food favorite is an Outpost original, hog fries. - We use like a spicy waffle fry and then load it with our barbecue pulled pork, and top it with jalapenos and cheese and our secret white sauce, barbecue sauce. So we sell a lot of the hog fries, those are good. - [Joe] Like these ladies, you'll want to try to save at least a little space for their legendary banana pudding. - I had somebody one day ask me, he said, "What is your number one thing on the menu?" And I said, "What do you mean?" And they said, "Well most restaurants have one item That's their number one thing that they sell and what they do. And this is what it is. And they build their menu around that. And I said, well, to me, if it's not good, it doesn't need to be on our menu. - [Server] All right, we have a pork spud. - What are you doing in here, Foghorn? - [Joe] Oh, and you'll get to meet The Outpost's mascot foghorn. And even if you don't see him, you'll hear him, as we did during our interview - Reunions or class parties. Many recessions, we can scare him off. - [Joe] Don't worry, Foghorn, you still rule the roost during the Outpost. A great place to stop and eat, spend the night, and enjoy a true family getaway. - They're so happy that we have a place that they can bring their family. It's peaceful and it's calm and it's fun for the kids. And it's a good family place to come. - You guys are working hard, but you're enjoying it. And you're doing it together, right? Oh - Oh yeah, absolutely. - That's right. Absolutely. - I know he enjoys it. - Yeah. Oh, we do. - Well that's gonna have to do it for this edition of "Tennessee Crossroads." Thanks for joining us. Don't forget our website, tennesseecrossroads.org, the place where you can download that PBS app. Oh, and of course, join us next week and help us keep Crossroads traveling. Thank you, - [Announcer] "Tennessee Crossroads" is made possible in part by. - [Phil] I'm Tennessee Tech President Phil Oldham. Here in Cookeville, Tennessee's college town, we are bold, fearless, confident, and kind. Tech prepares students for careers by making everyone's experience personal. We call that living wings up. Learn more at tntech.edu. - [Announcer] Discover Tennessee Trails and Byways. Discover Tennessee's adventure, cuisine, history, and more made in Tennessee experiences showcased among these 16 driving trails. More at tntrailsand byways.com.
February 08, 2024
Season 37 | Episode 26
Miranda Cohen tells the tale of the wandering llamas of Greenville. Laura Faber explores the National Museum of African American Music. And Joe Elmore visits a fun, family getaway near Pickwick Dam in Southwest Tennessee.