Destinations & Diversions: It's Moon Pie time in Bell Buckle

Thursday, June 13, 2019
Tongue-in-cheek skits are a mainstay of the RC Cola/Moon Pie festival experience.
T-G File Photo by John I. Carney

The 25th annual RC Cola/Moon Pie Festival will be held Saturday in Bell Buckle. The event includes 10-mile and 5-kilometer runs, a parade, live entertainment, and scores of craft, food and merchandise vendors. Country star T. Graham Brown and his wife Sheila will be crowned king and queen of the festival, and past kings and queens from the festival's history will be remembered.


Country star T. Graham Brown, seen here, and his wife Sheila will be crowned king and queen of the 25th annual RC Cola/Moon Pie Festival Saturday in Bell Buckle.
Submitted photo

7 a.m. -- 10-Mile Run

7:30 a.m. -- 5K Run

8:30 a.m. -- 5K run Awards

9 a.m. -- Craft and food vendors open

9:15 a.m. -- Midstate Cloggers

10 a.m. -- 10-Mile Run Awards

11 a.m. -- Midstate Cloggers

11:30 a.m. -- Parade

Noon -- King and Queen Coronation & Reunion

12:45 p.m. -- Prizes for farthest travelled, youngest attendee present& oldest attendee present

1 p.m. -- RC Cola & MoonPie Games

3 p.m. -- Entertainment Stage & Photo Opportunities with Cast & Characters

4:30 p.m. -- World's largest Moon Pie

Go to for more information.

Other places to have a royal time this week:

Take a kid fishing

Ed Carson Memorial Fishing Day will be held 9 a.m. until noon Saturday on the campus of Tennessee Fire Service and Codes Enforcement Academy on Unionville Deason Road. The event was rescheduled from last Saturday due to inclement weather. No fishing license is required. Children ages 4-15 (who must be accompanied by an adult) can fish from the academy's pond, which will be stocked for the event. There will be prizes for catching fish -- under normal circumstances, there are enough prizes for every child to receive something. Participants must bring their own rod, bait and tackle.

The event is sponsored by a variety of agencies; call Shelbyville Parks and Recreation, 931-684-9780, for more information.

VFW Music

VFW Post 5019, 1320 Wartrace Pike (Depot Street), will hold its monthly third-Saturday music night this weekend. Door open at 5:30 p.m., with the event from 6-9:30 p.m. James Smotherman & Friends will be featured but other acoustic musicians and singers are welcome. Admission is $3, and there will be a potluck meal. No alcohol or outside beverages are permitted. For more information, call 931-607-3149 or 931-684-2523.

Fish fry

Whosoever Will Let Him Come Pentecostal Church, 219 East Cedar Street, will hold a fish fry starting at 11 a.m. Saturday. Fish sandwiches will be $7 and fish plates will be $10.

Historical society

Bedford County Historical Society will meet Monday at First United Methodist Church. A potluck supper will begin at 6:30 p.m., followed by a business meeting and the program.

Myers Brown of Tennessee State Library and Archives, will speak on "Loyal Cavaliers: Tennessee's Unionists and their Cavalry." The talk will focus on the often-forgotten story of Tennessee Unionism and the contributions of thousands of Tennesseans to the cavalry commands of Federal armies of the Western Theater of the American Civil War.

For more information, call program coordinator Mary Ruth Simmons at 580-6538 or Society President Al Simmons at 680-6313.

Amateur Radio

Bedford County Amateur Radio Service will meet 7 p.m. Tuesday at Bedford County Emergency Management Agency on Railroad Avenue. The meeting is open to anyone interested in amateur radio. For more information, call Jim Curtis, 931-205-0325.

Diana Singing

The Diana Singing, held in the small community of Diana, halfway between Lewisburg and Pulaski, will celebrate its 50th anniversary this weekend. The a cappella congregational singing begins Friday and Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. and lasts until the wee hours of the morning on Friday night and until 10 p.m. on Saturday. The singing, which regularly draws crowds of 3,000, is held in a hay shed built especially for this event. There is a camping area, museum and gift shop. Concessions are available including the signature country ham sandwiches.

For more information, go to or call 256-665-3868. The GPS address is 2772 Diana Road in Cornersville; that's for GPS purposes only and is not a valid mailing address.

Fun Friday

Fun Friday will be held Friday night on the Lewisburg square. Tom Dixon will provide live entertainment, and there will be food trucks, a car show, free children's activities, vendors, and shops on the square will be open. To pre-register for the cornhole tournament, call 931-993-2436.


Center for the Arts, in Murfreesboro, continues its production of "Footloose" through June 23.

The play, based on the hit 1984 film, follows a group of high school students as they challenge their town's leadership to overturn a ban on dancing.

Performances are at 7:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 2 p.m. Sundays. Tickets range from $14 to $18 and are currently on sale at, by calling 615-904-2787, or at the Center for the Arts Box Office, 110 West College Street, in downtown Murfreesboro.

This production is rated PG-13 for sexual themes and references to drugs and alcohol.

'Apollo 11'

The entire world was watching a grainy TV signal on July 20, 1969, when Neil Armstrong became the first person to set foot on the moon, declaring, "That's one small step for a man, one giant leap for mankind."

Audiences will once again experience the thrill of one of humanity's greatest achievements when "Apollo 11: First Steps Edition" launches Friday at the Tennessee Aquarium IMAX Theater in Chattanooga. This film is a special, giant-screen version made exclusively for science centers and museum theaters and derived from Todd Douglas Miller's critically-acclaimed theatrical documentary Apollo 11.

It seems impossible, but this project began with the discovery of a trove of never-before-seen 70-millimeter footage and 11,000 hours of uncatalogued audio recordings from the Apollo 11 astronauts and 60 key NASA personnel captured during every moment of the historic voyage. Miller's team spent more than half a year painstakingly reviewing the materials and piecing together the entire nine-day Apollo mission. They were able to distill this into a 47-minute film that makes viewers feel as though they are witnessing the events for the first time.

"We realized that no one but the people at Mission Control had seen what we were seeing, and we were seeing it fifty years later," says director Todd Douglas Miller. "In some cases, iconic images from the mission were familiar to us, but we had only ever seen them on 35-millimeter footage. In all cases, after scanning the 70-millimeter material, we were able to see the Apollo 11 mission in a brand-new way. Standing there, seeing this footage for the first time, was like a religious experience. We were floored, speechless."

Dr. June Scobee Rodgers, the Founding Chairman of the Challenger Center for Space Science Education, recalls the thrill of that night. "When it was about time for them to step out onto the moon, I woke my children up. We sat down in front of the TV, and we were just cheering. It was spectacular to see."

The overwhelming excitement was not just limited to the United States. "They also showed things like the Eiffel Tower and huge crowds of people watching the event," Rodgers says. "People were gathered around their TVs in countries all over the world."

Rodgers will be the featured speaker 7 p.m. (Eastern time) Friday for the launch of "Apollo 11: First Steps Edition" at the Tennessee Aquarium IMAX Theater.

A portion of the proceeds from opening day screenings will support the Challenger STEM Learning Center at The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

For tickets or more information, go to

Space Center

Speaking of Apollo 11, this year's 50th anniversary of the moon landing is an opportune time to go to the U.S. Space & Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama, about 90 minutes' drive south of Shelbyville. In addition to the museum's permanent exhibits, including a surplus Saturn V rocket booster, the Apollo 16 command module and a moon rock, there's a temporary exhibit on the Apollo program and its cultural impact.

The museum's IMAX theatre was recently converted into a planetarium, although its digital projection system still enables it to show immersive, IMAX-style movies.

Another option is the bus tour of the nearby NASA Marshall Space Flight Center. It was recently announced that one of the rocket engine test stands at Marshall will be re-activated for testing of the new generation of privately-built rocket engines.

For more information and details on the U.S. Space & Rocket Center, go to