The SCA is thrilled to announce our 2024 Road Trip: A Walk Through Nashville’s Neon Canyon.
HERE’S THE PLAN
Friday, September 20: Opening Reception
6:30pm – 8:00pm
We’ll start off with a special night at the Willie Nelson and Friends Museum. Our singing tour guide will lead us through the life of this outlaw musician. Then light food featuring original and famous Prince’s Hot Chicken and southern style cooking from Monell’s Restaurant, along with local wine and beers.
Our special guest will be local author and tourism professional, Tom Atkinson, who will talk about Nashville’s mid-century diner and music culture.
The museum’s gift shop claims to be the largest in Nashville. And next door is the free Cooter’s Museum, dedicated to the TV show The Dukes of Hazzard.
Saturday, September 21: Bus Tour & Neon Brilliance
8:30am – 8:30pm
During the day: Neon signs galore – liquor stores, motels, and 1950s-era eateries. A tour of the world-famous Hatch Show Print showroom. A stop a the block-long Arcade, the city’s first shopping mall, built in 1902 and inspired by the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II arcade in Milan.
Then off to the Lane Motor Museum, located in an old Sunbeam Bakery complex, with a Southern-style lunch, supplied by Martin’s Bar-B-Que Joint. Marathon Village, which today features, among its many stores, Antique Archeology, home of the History Channel’s American Pickers.
And at night: Spend the evening in Nashville’s Neon Canyon, an eight-block area full of bright neon signs and lively honky tonks. We’ll provide a printed self-guided tour map of the neon sign locations, unique things to see and the best dinner choices.
Then, (stagger) off to bed: The tour concludes with a bus ride back to the host hotel, cruising through the Neon Canyon to see all the signs after dark from a new perspective.
Sunday, September 22: Bus Tour & Bathrooms
8:30am – 5:30pm
Morning: Our first stop will mark an SCA first: a bathroom tour at the Hermitage Hotel’s famous Art Deco men’s and women’s restrooms. The men’s room is in the Bathroom Hall of Fame (who knew?!). We’ll also explore the magnificent lobby of the historic hotel, a site that witnessed an integral moment in the passage of the 19th Amendment, which gave women the right to vote.
As we travel through the world-famous Music Row, with its myriad recording studios and record label headquarters, we’ll pass the legendary RCA Studio B, where Elvis, Dolly and Waylon recorded. Then it’s off to visit the state’s largest guitar, more neon, and a trip way back in time to visit the world’s only to-scale replica of the Parthenon.
Afternoon: An iconic “meat & three” experience at the world-famous Loveless Café, noted for Southern specialties, including biscuits, ham, and fried chicken. Following lunch, we’ll have dessert (on your own) at a circa-1951 walk-up dairy bar and opportunities to photograph more iconic signs.
On the way back to our hotel to conclude the weekend, we will get a glimpse of the state’s old penitentiary where films, including The Green Mile and Walk the Line were filmed.