30 Things Someone From Tennessee Might Have To Explain To An Out-Of-TownerCowboys, concerts, and churches, there are some things about Tennessee that might confuse an out-of-towner.
1. Tennessee Whiskey Is Not Just Any Old Whiskey
Source: Flickr User Sean DavisTennessee does whiskey a bit differently. What makes it special here is that it goes through the “Lincoln County Process” in which it’s passed through a bed of sugar before being barreled. This process makes it different (and better!) than any other whiskey in the world.
2. Jack Daniel’s Pride Runs Deep
Source: Flickr User KrasavaIt shouldn’t be too surprising, but people in Tennessee absolutely love Jack Daniels. Aside from this whiskey being stocked in nearly every bar, the brand can be seen on anywhere from t-shirts to stickers around the state.
3. Nashville Isn’t Full Of Cowboys
Source: Flickr User sebrennerAfter an out-of-towner sees how Tennessee is portrayed in popular media, they probably think that the state consists of drunk cowboys and country music. This is far from the case, as even in the “Capital of Country Music”, it’s normal to run into more hipsters than boot wearing gun slingers.
4. Tennesseans Don’t Settle For Bad Barbecue
Source: Flickr User Southern Foodways AllianceMemphis is home to the tastiest barbecue in the nation with the best cuts, the best rubs, and the best sauce around. It will have even Texans wanting to move.
5. A Meat And Three Is How Every Meal Should Be Served
Source: Flickr User Free Photo RevolutionTennessee has a thing for serving up food in the meat and three format, exactly how it should be everywhere else in the country. If an out-of-towner is ordering food at a barbecue or home-style restaurant, make sure they know to pick at least three sides to complement their protein.
6. Tennessee Liked Peyton Manning Before It Was Cool
Source: Flickr User David C. FosterColorado and Indiana aren’t the only states cheering on Peyton Manning every Sunday as he hunts for another Super Bowl ring. Manning played college football at Tennessee, meaning the Volunteer State probably has more diehard Peyton fans than anywhere else in the country.
7. Country Music Really Is THAT Big Of A Deal
Source: Flickr User Laural L. RusswurmNashville is called the “Capital of Country Music” for a reason, attracting all of the biggest acts and aspiring musicians in the genre every single year. While not everyone in the state ADORES country, it’s hard to deny that this place has the best around.
8. But Country Music Isn’t Everything
Source: Flickr User PreciousBytesTennessee also has a rich history in other music genres such as the blues, rock n’ roll, and hip-hop. If you’re seeing a live show in this state, it’s hard to go wrong.
9. Bonnaroo Is Will Ruin All Other Concerts For You
Source: Flickr User brookageIn a state that’s centered around music, it’s no shock that the best concert in the country also calls Tennessee its home. The world-famous Bonnaroo, a four-day festival in Manchester, attracts thousands of people from around the country every year.
10. Volunteering Is A Way Of Life
Source: Flickr User Triple TriWhen it comes to college football, there’s no better group of fans than those of the Tennessee Volunteers. They spend a majority of their lives sporting the color orange, not to mention they’ve got the best football tailgating in the country.
11. Game Days Tend To Trump All Else
Source: Flickr User Joelk75If it’s Saturday and the home team is playing, not much else will get done. College football has a tendency to shut down the state with people even planning huge events like weddings around game days.
12. The Vols Aren’t The Only Team Around
Source: Flickr User SpokenhopeWhile the Volunteers seem to get the most love in Tennessee, the Vanderbilt Commodores are a close second. With a bitter instate rivalry, Tennesseans are forced to pick on or the other and stick with their decision for life.
13. The Chicken Here Is Always Hot
Source: Flickr User Ntcrwler – http://www.ipernity.com/home/290887Chicken in Tennessee, especially Nashville, will have your mouth on fire in no time. The term “hot chicken” isn’t referring to the physical temperature of the meat, it’s referring to the spicy sauce caked onto it. It tastes so good, it will have even those who claim to hate spicy foods fighting through the burn.
14. Moon Pies Have Nothing To Do With The Moon
Source: Flickr User JD HancockConsisting of marshmallow, graham cracker, and a thin layer of chocolate, Moon Pies are everything you’d want in a s’more minus the hassle.
15. And Krystal Has Nothing To Do With Jewelry Here
Source: Flickr User cornstalkerTennesseans have an obsession Krystal, but not the fancy type. To out-of-towners unfamiliar with the region, Krystal is similar to White Castle, but ten times better. How many can you eat?
16. Save Your Big Purchase For August
Source: Flickr User Walmart CorporateEvery year, the first Friday of August kicks off a weekend without sales tax on certain items throughout the state, making it easier to purchase back to school supplies such as clothing and computers. This tradition will definitely seem odd to an out-of-towner, making them wish they planned their trip for a different date.
17. Athens Isn’t The Only Place With A Parthenon
Source: Flickr User stephenyearginIn 1987, Nashville built a full-scale replica of the Greek Parthenon. This one is better than the original though, because it still has a roof.
18. Not All Alcohol Is Sold Legally Here
Source: Flickr User MonkeySimonMoonshine is a surprisingly large industry in Tennessee in which homemade liquor is bottled and sold without following the proper government procedures. You won’t see it served at a bar, but in some of the rural areas of the state it tends to pop up from time to time.
19. Snow Can Cause Some Big Problems
Source: Flickr User bnorwoodTennessee does not have an infrastructure built for heavy snow. That being said, if a forecast predicts a few flurries, the state tends to panic, as people flock to stock up on essentials and school is preemptively canceled.
20. “Bless your Heart” Is No Compliment At All
Source: Flickr User TobyotterIn the South, if someone says “bless your heart”, they’re not actually blessing you. It’s really a passive aggressive slam.
21. Pretty Much Everywhere Is Haunted
Source: Flickr User …love MaeganIn a state with such rich history, there are allegedly ghosts sneaking around everywhere. Every town has their story of supernatural happenings that must surely be evidence that some soul from the past is still hanging around.
22. Don’t Be Scared Of These Predators
Source: Flickr User Fat Elvis RecordsThe Volunteer State loves backing their Nashville Predators. While there might not be much snow on the ground in this area of the country, that doesn’t stop people from embracing the sport of hockey.
23. Davy Crockett Is A Hometown Hero
Source: Flickr User kuratowa_1After building his reputation in the hills of Tennessee, Davy Crockett became one of the most memorable folk heroes in American history. Even his death is famous, as he died defending the Alamo in Texas.
24. Tennessee Holds The Bible Belt Together
Source: Flickr User Photos by MavisPeople are religious in Tennessee and they’re proud of it. There are churches and signs everywhere. If an out-of-towner is coming from somewhere on the other end of this spectrum, it will definitely be something they notice right away.
25. Watch Out For Spiders
Source: Flickr User tinyfrogletTennessee is famous for its beautiful landscapes. Unfortunately, something that comes with the great outdoors and so much nature is a ton of spiders. Two spiders that can be spotted in Tennessee are the very poisonous black widow and brown recluse. Make sure out-of-towners know to check their shoes for bugs before sliding their feet in.
26. Tennessee Is Basically Three Different States
Source: Flickr User Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the BPLTennessee is so long that is has three completely different landscapes. The west is filled with rolling hills, the central area is flat, and the east has huge mountains.
27. Titan Love Is Undying
Source: Flickr User ralph and jennyEven if the Titans are having a rough season, their fans will still be found wearing the famous Titans blue and white, praying that the next season has a few more W’s.
28. Deer, Deer Everywhere
Source: Flickr User RogerGounMake sure an out-of-towner knows to watch out for deer while on the roadways, as this animal still refuses to follow traffic laws. While they might look cute, every Tennessean knows at least one person that’s had to pay for expensive auto repairs after colliding with one of these creatures.
29. Don’t Poke The Bears
Source: Flickr User cletchAround 1,500 bears can be found in the Smoky Mountain region alone. These bears love Tennessee, thanks to over 10,000 caves in the state that are perfect for hibernation. While the bears look soft and cuddly, they aren’t too fond of humans. It’s best to just head the other direction if one is spotted in the distance.
30. There’s No Place More Beautiful Than The Smokies
Source: Flickr User nickledfordWhile most out-of-towners will only know Tennessee as the home of Nashville, it’s so much more than that. With tons of awesome outdoor beauty, including the Smoky Mountains, there’s no better place to do a little exploring of your own. What have you had to explain to out-of-towners about Tennessee? Tell us in the comments below!