For going on 20 years, folks in the tri-cities region of east Tennessee have enjoyed great bluegrass and old time music at The Pickin’ Porch Show on Thursday nights in Bristol. Everyone from the biggest names in bluegrass, to up-and-coming artists and students groups from nearby ETSU, have graced their stage.
But after tonight’s (10/26) show, The Pickin’ Porch will move along with their sponsoring agency, the Appalachian Cultural Music Association, to a new home in Kingsport. Show host and ACMA President Rick Dollar tells us that they are a bit sad to leave their home on State Street in Bristol, but that support there in town has dwindled, while people in Kingsport have been quite eager to get them there.
2018 will mark two decades for The Pickin’ Porch Show. Started by local radio personality, Tim White, who also launched the ACMA, it has been hosted this past two years by Dollar. Tim’s time is largely tied up now with the Song Of The Mountains television show, which airs live bluegrass performances on PBS affiliates across the country. He invited Rick to take his spot on the Porch when the TV show became a full-time vocation.
The new site will be at 316 Broad Street in downtown Kingsport TN. It will house the Association’s Mountain Music Museum, and a 100 seat venue for live music. The ACMA will continue to support ETSU’s Bluegrass, Old Time and Country Music program, both by offering their student bands a place to perform, and through the two grants they created for ETSU students, the Benny Sims Scholarship and the Leon Kiser Scholarship.
ACMA is also planning a new concert series in Kingsport at The Renaissance Theater. Expect details on that to be announced soon.
The final show tonight will feature Florida’s Trinity River Band, and everyone is invited to take part in this last opportunity to enjoy music at this location in Bristol.
The Pickin’ Porch Show is the primary funding mechanism for the ACMA and the Mountain Music Museum. The show receives sponsorship from Domtar and Appalachian Federal Credit Union.