By Lori EganJune 13, 2013
FORT BENNING, Ga., (June 12, 2013) -- Are you new to the tricommunity? Haven't had time to check out some of the offerings in the area? I love the downtown area and Saturday I went to both Market Days on Broadway and the Phenix City Amphitheater.
Market Days on Broadway
From April to November, the 1000 and 1100 blocks of Broadway become a market from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday. Shoppers can buy cut flowers, organic vegetables and garden produce, farm eggs, fresh bread and much more. I was told baking the bread takes 17 hours. Baked fresh by the Bakery and Café at Rose Cottage in Pine Mountain, Ga., it goes into the ovens at 3 a.m. for sale later in the morning. I'm thinking that's pretty fresh.
There's all kinds of arts and crafts for sale if you aren't thinking about food and while I was there, there was even music. Alexa Burroughs was singing for tips.
Later in the evening Natalie Stovall and Brandon Giles performed at the Phenix City Amphitheater.
I'm sensing a theme -- food and music.
Stovall isn't a stranger to the Fort Benning community -- her first military concert was in 2007 for Sand Hill, she rocked last year's Independence Day celebration and her father was inducted into the 2013 Officer Candidate School's Hall of Fame May 10.
She and her sister surprised their father by attending the ceremony.
"He wasn't expecting us," Stovall said. "I got home at 3 a.m. (from touring), my sister picked me up at 6 a.m. and we hauled (it) to get here in time. We made it."
Phenix City Amphitheater
"Where when the sun goes down, the stars come out to play" is its theme. On the banks of the Chattahoochee River, at 508 Dillingham Street, Phenix City, the Parks and Recreation Department sponsors a Summer Concert series. National recording stars as well as rising stars perform. A couple of years ago, country artists Luke Bryan and Jake Owen performed. Other musical acts that have performed there include Grand Funk Railroad, Percy Sledge, Bad Company, B.J. Thomas and Rhonda Vincent. Rebecca Harris, with the Phenix City Parks and Recreation Department, said the Zapp Band gave an awesome performance and she was looking forward to Lisa and Jonathon Moore's performance on July Fourth. The Moore Band, Christian recording artists, concert is free.
Usually admission is $10 and children 12 and younger get in free. The amphitheater is a smoke-free, family friendly facility. Bring folding chairs or a blanket to sit on, no coolers or pets. Little River Band, cost is $15, will perform June 29. Gates open at 6 p.m. and the show starts at 7. For more information, call 334-291-4711.
One of my favorite places to pick blueberries is A&J Farms in Harris County, Ga. I spoke with Anne Story the other day. She and her husband, retired Col. Jack Story, own the farm where they have around 700 blueberry bushes. She called to say the berries should be ripe for the picking Saturday. The growing season is six to eight weeks. The Storys offer a military discount -- active duty pay $7 a gallon and the rest of us pay $9. The farm isn't hard to find -- from Fort Benning, go north on Interstate 185, take exit 30 and turn right, go 5.1 miles to a four-way stop. Turn left and the farm is the first driveway on the right. For those who like to drive through Hamilton, turn left at the Wells Fargo Bank to take the back way up the mountain. It's about seven miles to the four-way stop. The address is 6876 Hamilton Pleasant Grove Road, Pine Mountain, Ga., 31822, and the phone number is 706-662-8352. Not only are the blueberries delicious, but the hospitality is amazing. More than once, I've stopped picking berries to sit in the shade and chitchat with the Storys. It's very peaceful.