By Jeaneane Payne
I have always appreciated the many shopping venues the Smoky Mountain area has to offer, but I’ve always preferred the traditional “mom and pop” shops — I favor tradition and supporting local businesses and the hard-working families that own these unique stores.
G. Webb Gallery
This magnificent art gallery is easily accessible, but it is carefully tucked away in the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community in Gatlinburg, TN. Stepping into the G. Webb Gallery will take you into a world separate from any other. You will become completely enveloped in its warmth and uniqueness – warmth created by the artist and uniqueness designed by G. and his wife Vickie and the gallery’s assistant, Jenny.
Along with a large selection of art work, you will find pottery and regional books as well as jams, jellies and coffee from G. Webb’s Morning Glory Farm.
G. began painting age the age of ten after a high school art teacher recognized his talent and played an influential role in his early career.
In 1971 he discovered that the Smoky Mountains would be the inspiration for his art. G. opened his Gatlinburg gallery soon afterwards. Since then, he has released more than 150 art prints with a focus on landscapes, mountainscapes, florals, people and the heritage of the mountains. He is well known for his renditions of historical sites such as “Memories of Elkmont.” in 1962, “The Mountain View Hotel” in 1958, and “A Mountain Christmas” which is the old E.E. Ogle Store in 1924.
G. and his wife Vickie have a daughter, Cami Monet, who has followed in her father’s footsteps. Her watercolour art is on display at G. Webb Gallery.
A visit to the gallery will enhance your Smoky Mountain getaway and leave you inspired. This is a place where you can truly take a piece of the Smoky Mountains home with you. Located at 795 Buckhorn Rd, Gatlinburg, TN, the gallery can best be accessed by taking Hwy 321 in Gatlinburg and traveling a few short miles to the entrance of the Arts & Crafts Community. Drive until the road ends, and the gallery will be on your right.
The moment I entered the Artist’s Attic, I sensed something different about the gallery. The walls were filled with beautiful art work of Smoky Mountain landscapes and still life. I was warmly greeted by the shop’s owner, artist Linda Morrow, who engaged in interesting conversation about her gallery and her art.
The one room shop is cozy yet offers many choices of art for you to take home with you. There are a few handcrafted items which add a nice flair to the shop.
One of the most striking paintings is “Barn at Richardson’s Cove”, an 18 x 36 unframed oil original. Linda says “”Each fall the Little Pigeon river area of Richardson’s Cove glows with beautiful light. When the rivers flow through the flatter cove areas, the water is smoother and more reflective and endlessly fascinates me.”
The Artist’s Attic is a stop you don’t want to miss on your Smoky Mountain getaway. It is located at 680 Glades Road, Gatlinburg TN in the Great Smoky Arts & Crafts Community.
Aunt Debbie’s Country Store
Maybe it’s the large tin rooster at the entrance to this country store that reminds me of the traditional American folk song “Sourwood Mountain”
Chicken’s a-crowing on Sourwood Mountain
Hey-ho diddle-um day
So many pretty girls I can’t count them
Hey-ho diddle-um day
There is an invisible sign at the entrance to the store that says “Welcome”! Upon entering Aunt Debbie’s, I was warmly greeted by the owner, Debbie. Filled with handmade crafts and rustic decor, the store supports local artisans and carries items not found in other local stores.
You can expect to find unique items like Smoky Mountain Rain — locally made candles which smell like a flower field after a spring mountain rain or a Tennessee Sunrise candle which glows like a morning sunrise. The Cozy Cabin candle is a rich scent that captures the wood, cedar and aroma of a fire burning in the fireplace. You will also find rustic lamp shades — bear, deer, buck, moose.
Antiques, barn wood creations, bullets, guns, knives, cedar swings and furniture, wildlife statues, and a large number of other items fill this cabin like country store inside and out.
Leave room for some items from Aunt Debbie Pantry including Smoky Mountain honey, hot mustard relish, chow chow relish, tomato preserves, pepper jelly, strawberry preserve (mountain made), and gun shot sauce “hot”.
Wears Valley General Store
With the Smoky Mountain peaks majestically rising behind this unique general store situated in the heart of Wears Valley, a true case study of modern East Tennessee versus traditional is revealed.
The inside of this barn-like structure offers up old floors, plain shelves, a weighing machine from another era, and friendly family-style customer service make Wears Valley General Store all that much more “real.” You will find many antique items in the store along with some handcrafted pieces and an old-fashioned candy aisle.
Don’t let this general store fool you from its rather beaten up exterior. This is the way general stores looked and operated before elements of big business gave a marketing program, exterior and interior sheen, and a touristy look to some of our other stores in the Smoky Mountain area.
It’s worth your time to stop in Wears Valley General Store at 3239 Wears Valley Rd, Sevierville TN. From Pigeon Forge take Wears Valley Road at Burger King and travel 11 miles. From Townsend take Wears Valley Rd and travel 7 miles.