It Takes a Village

20 Jul

There is a neighborhood in Nashville that sits between Vanderbilt University and Belmont University. It is called Hillsboro Village and is home to a collection of eclectic stores, restaurants and hangout spots. It is also one of my favorite parts of the city and the place that I spent last evening.

The choices of Hillsboro Village are plentiful, and I have tried most of them. Painting ceramics at All Fired Up is something cool. Bosco’s is a great place to grab an appetizer and a drink. There is also Fido’s, an old pet shop that has been turned into a coffee shop. Perhaps, the most famous spot in the Village is The Pancake Pantry, a breakfast mecca where Nashvillians stand in the waiting line as a rite of passage.

My girlfriend and I didn’t hit any of those places last night because we were headed to the best thing about the neighborhood, the Belcourt Theater.

It is not large and decadent like Atlanta’s Fox Theater, but it has an interesting history. Opened in 1925, the theater showed silent films and became the temporary home of the Grand Ole Opry. Later, it became a playhouse and concert hall. Today, it is a great place to see independent films and concerts. Big Bonus! Alcohol is sold at the same concession stand where you can buy Goober’s.

We saw Moonrise Kingdom, a Wes Anderson film with Bruce Willis, Edward Norton, Bill Murray, Tilda Swinton and Frances McDormand. However, the stars were the two kids who the story revolved around. In case someone wants to see the movie, I will not write about the story, but it was a great film. I always like seeing big stars in small movies because they seem to be doing it for love rather than money.

After the movie, we walked across the street to Taps, a restaurant in an old house.

I wanted to sit on the front porch and enjoy the evening but found the tables filled. At first, I was disappointed to sit inside, but it turned into a treat that only Nashville can provide. On the small stage, if it was even a stage, songwriters took turns playing their songs. Now, songwriters are not great singers, but, when they start playing stuff that you recognize, you listen anyway. The last songwriter had songs that had been recorded by Kenny Rogers, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band and George Strait. Here was a successful songwriter singing his songs in a small restaurant on a side street. As I said, only in Nashville.

What’s more is that he was doing it in a glorified hamburger joint. But, it was a heck of a hamburger. Taps specializes in stuffed hamburgers, and mine was stuffed with habanero and jalapeno peppers. I believe that it was the best hamburger I’ve ever eaten.

Oh, another thing that may only happen in Nashville. My table had Kris Kristofferson’s face painted on it. I tweeted that fact, and a former student and fellow blogger wanted me to link a picture. Alas, I forgot to take one.

2 Responses to “It Takes a Village”

  1. Madame Weebles July 20, 2012 at 18:41 #

    That sounds like a very fun evening. You can’t help but love a place that sells booze AND Goober’s. And a chili-pepper stuffed hamburger? That must have been all kinds of awesome.

    • surroundedbyimbeciles July 20, 2012 at 19:37 #

      It’s a great theater, but they don’t have my favorite candy, Hot Tamales. Luckily, I got plenty of heat from the burger.

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