Thanksgiving Story

We Have a Winner!

Author Stephen Lyn Bales

A HUGE thanks to all those who entered our Thanksgiving Writing Contest! Congratulations to our First Place writer, Stephen Lyn Bales!
Stephen has won a $50 Visa gift card!
Stephen grew up in Gatlinburg. He's a local naturalist and nature writer and has written three books "Natural Histories," Ghost Birds," and "Ephemeral by Nature" all published by the University of Tennessee Press.
Read his story below:

First Thanksgiving

Arlene Anderson with French host Sylvie

Thanksgiving is a holiday that conjures up many fond memories for me—and not just the typical ones. Growing up in Wisconsin, I experienced the traditional United States version of Thanksgiving, with a turkey and dinner table surrounded with family.

Pass the turkey, please

Amanda Riggs

When the air feels crisp and a gentle wind lifts the colorful leaves from their branches before they swiftly swirl to the ground, my heart swells with memories of the women in my life who made the holidays special.
Their tender voices and the smell of my favorite dishes they’d prepare resonate through my mind. For a moment, with my eyes closed, those memories feel like the present.

When one door closes

Walker family. Clint, Mandi, Jewel, and Tommy

Reflection is good for the soul. If someone had described this life to me a year earlier, I would never have believed it. Although a friend’s betrayal stung me to the core and my church’s eventual transition ended the season I called “home”, nothing would compare with my next few months.