The Grand Ole Opry




            On July 13th, 2013 History on the Move landed in Nashville, Tennessee where we learned a lot about the Grand Ole Opry country music show. The Grand Ole Opry had been around for a while before it finally landed at the Marvelous Ryman Auditorium in 1943. Originally the venue had been a church, but to make money rented out to many acts such as Houdini and Bob Hope, which made it one of the most popular venues in the South. While the Opry occupied the Ryman from 1943-1974 they saw many popular country acts such as Bob Monroe, Johnny Cash and Hank Williams. In the early 1970’s there was talk of moving the Opry to a new location as the Ryman had been deteriorating.  There was a struggle to keep the Opry at the classic Ryman inside of downtown Nashville instead of building this new Opryland outside of the Downtown area and building a theme park around it. Many protested and resigned their membership from the Opry thinking this was not the right direction for the Opry to go. Regardless of the protest they moved the Opry to Opryland in 1974. The Opry has been there ever since, although recently they started doing the Opry in the Ryman every winter again.

            My experience at the Opry was a great one. We saw John Conlee, Kalleigh Bannen, Bobby Osborne & The Rocky Top X-Press, Jeannie Seely, Jonathan Jackson, George Hamilton IV, Jimmy Newman, The Willis Clan, Opry Square Dancers, Jim Ed Brown, Elizabeth Cook and Restless Heart. There was a real family feel to the Opry as people of all ages where there and preforming. Coming into the opry you have a bigger than life feeling with the huge opry hotel and the huge outlet mall around you. My favorite artist of the night was the Willis Clan. They were a family band with the oldest member around 21. They played an Irish style of country and all of the members where very talented. My experience at the Opry was great and it is something that I will always remember.  
                                   Adam Bercegeay

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