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Nashville, Tennessee’s Neon-filled Broadway

On the first day of our 17 day RV journey, we rented a car from Tampa to Chicago to pick up a brand new RV we rented from Cruise America.  We started out from Tampa early in the morning and by the time we got to Nashville, we needed more than just a rest stop break.

A concert takes place on Broadway in a one-block section that is closed to traffic in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

A concert takes place on Broadway in a one-block section that is closed to traffic in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

While I’m sure this city has enough to keep anyone occupied for a lot longer than we stayed here, we were very happy with our choice of Nashville as a place to hang for a few hours to take a break from the driving.

There really is quite an abundance of neon on Broadway in downtown Nashville.  Even in the windows.

There really is quite an abundance of neon on Broadway in downtown Nashville. Even in the windows.

We easily scored a parking spot within a block of Broadway ($20 fee) and quickly walked down to Broadway where a concert was or festival was happening.  This was about 4PM on a Thursday by the way.  There were great country music bands playing on the stage and people walking around drinking beer in the block-long section of Broadway that was blocked off.

Betty Boots neon sign on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

Betty Boots neon sign on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

It is coming up on these types of events that make travel so much fun and spontaneous.  You never know what you’ll find.  Well, when the lights started to go down we were really pleased with the variety of neon signs all over.  It was like the 1950s come to life.

A neon sign for The Stage on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

A neon sign for The Stage on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

We walked around the street and discovered some interesting shops and no shortage of bars and several restaurants well worth trying.  We settled on the Tequila Cowboy where I had a bowl of the jalapeno crab bisque soup that was so incredible I’d go back to the Tequila Cowboy to have it again.   The Tequila Cowboy is not a unique place and had the look and feel of many bars but the food was very good and it was right on Broadway and we’d go back without question.

The bright neon signs of Wanna B's Karaoke Bar and the Tequila Cowboy on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

The bright neon signs of Wanna B’s Karaoke Bar and the Tequila Cowboy on Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tennessee.

Aside from running into the unexpected festival and concert, the neon was really quite interesting as you just don’t find that anywhere anymore.  And while you might think a town with lots of neon is a tacky place stuck in the 50s, that certainly isn’t Nashville.  It appeared very exciting and, while the people walking Broadway were not models in the latest fashions, it certainly wasn’t as provincial as you might expect.

Jacks Bar-B_Que neon sign on Broadway, Nashville, Tennessee.

Jacks Bar-B_Que neon sign on Broadway, Nashville, Tennessee.

I really wished we had more time, but part of this journey is to find places well worth going back to visit and Nashville was definitely on the list of places to return to.  Next time you’re passing through Nashville, definitely stop.  And next time you’re thinking of a place to visit, consider Nashville and travel well.

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