Corbin concert trip

Last summer we went on a long weekend trip to Bowling Green that included a country music concert in Louisville. We really enjoyed it and planned to do some more. A few months ago John & Debby won tickets to Hankfest in Indianapolis and it strengthened the concert bug. Back around Christmas Debby found a concert in Corbin, KY, featuring the Brothers Osborne, Lee Brice, and Chris Young. We made plans to go. It would be a nice break from the winter blahs.

February 6

We met at John & Debby's at 5pm and loaded up the Suburban. It's 239 miles to Corbin so I'll drive first. It's nice to split up the driving...and the front seats in the luxury liner are more comfortable than the back ones. Ha!

As has become tradition when we head south in the evening we stopped at Famous Dave's BBQ for supper. It is always good. There's a lot of road construction going on in Louisville but we cruised through unmolested. There was actually very little traffic for a Friday evening.

We stopped in Shelbyville for gas and John took the helm. Donna's kid had swiped her cellphone charger so I got her one here. The trip between Frankfort and Richmond is a little hazy. The leather seats and a stomach full of BBQ put me to sleep. When I awoke there was a nice full moon following us to Corbin. We are staying in the Holiday Inn Express which is just off the interstate. We got there around 10pm.

When we checked in we had a nice surprise. The guy at the desk, Barry, was a former Bedford resident! His brother was in the same class as John's brother. It's a small world. He even said I looked familiar but we couldn't decide why. He told us where the concert venue was, some good places to eat, and some antique places to visit.

When we mentioned the concert he said Lee Brice and Chris Young were scheduled to stay there after the show tomorrow night. You could see the light bulbs above the girls' heads...a hotel ambush meet and greet! We went to our rooms and unpacked then reassembled outside for a smoke and a trip next door to McDonalds for late night snacks. pie. Donna got some cookies.

We brought our stuff back and ate in the hotel dining area. Barry came in and talked to us some more. He said he recognized me through friends of his that worked for the ambulance service. We discussed plans for tomorrow. We'll hit some antique places then visit the nearby Cumberland Falls. Donna went to sleep quickly but not so much for me. My earlier nap cursed me so I watched TV until 5am or so.

239 miles.

February 7

Needless to say, the 8am alarm was not welcome. We are meeting at 9am and having breakfast at McDonalds. I laid in bed as long as possible. Donna and I had a room on the first floor so it was a short walk to the lobby. We went to McDonalds and brought our food back to the hotel breakfast area again. McDonalds didn't appeal to Donna so she had some toast and hotel breakfast.

A backseat selfie.

About 10am we loaded into the Suburban in search of antiques. Specifically, the antique store Barry had mentioned. His directions sounded simple but the reality was different. We turned at the second stoplight and eventually ended up in the country.

Lots of well-used tracks. The signal lights in distance are all red. Not much hope of seeing a train here anytime soon.

We backtracked to town and just started looking for antique shops. We found a place downtown but they didn't open until 11am. I found something I liked, though. Trains! There are a couple small railroad yards downtown. A coal train was waiting on a northbound grain train to head out of town.

Corbin is a junction of a couple CSX lines and is on CSX's main rail corridor in the area. Much of their coal traffic moves through this area.

The northbound grain train.

Eventually we found the antique store on US25 outside of town. We perused the stuff on the porch then headed inside. The temperatue isn't bad but the blustery wind makes it feel cold. This place had pretty good prices. Donna found a Pyrex bowl to add to her collection. We have been looking for a shelf to put in her bathroom. We found something that we kind of liked but it was a little too tall.

We tried to use the Suburban's navigation to locate more antique stores but it kept taking us to deadends. Eventually we spied this place next to a flea market. Not much here but high prices.

Next we headed downtown to the earlier antique store we had found. Not a bad store but I don't think anyone bought anything. Donna and I went across the street to the Dixie Cafe so Donna could use the restroom. I bought a pop and we sat outside on a bench and waited on the others.

Sidenote: The antique store had a bathroom but John had used it and made the back part of the store temporarily uninhabitable. Yeah John! I would chuckle about this the rest of the trip.

We visited a couple more stores including one that was a little creepy. We couldn't find anymore shops to visit so we headed to the Cumberland Falls. I have been there a couple times and it is a nice place to see. The navigation took us south along the railroad tracks. It was a scenic drive and we saw a freight train.

The route then took us west down some twisty county roads that eventually passed under I-75 and back to US25. We weren't sure why the navigation didn't just take us straight down US25 from Corbin. A mystery I guess. Another mystery of the trip was a "Welcome to Kentucky" sign we saw on US25 that was 30 miles from the border.

KY-90 to the falls is a nice curvy road. A great road on a motorcycle. Not so much in the backseat of the Suburban as it sloshed around my breakfast burritos and made my stomach a little upset.

It was nice to get to the falls and stretch our legs. I noticed the water was higher than the last time Donna and I were here.

I also noticed they had blocked off a lot of the viewing area. Normally you can go all the way to the far fence. At least we had in the past. We found out later they block the area off in the winter due to ice forming from the spray.

There was a lot of water pouring over the falls. Impressive. That's a 70-foot drop.

We bought some pins and a few other items at the gift shop then headed back to to Corbin. The curvy road didn't bother my stomach this time. The navigation took us on a normal route back.

Barry had recommended Dino's next to the hotel so that is where we had a late lunch. The food was awesome. Most of us had the Mama's Trio...lasagna, alfredo, and cannelloni. Marvelous. Their breadsticks were light and fluffy. We stuffed ourselves and there was still a lot to take back to the room.

After lunch we went to Save-a-lot and Rite Aid and a couple other places for supplies. Once back at the hotel we had a few hours before we would head to the concert so I took a shower and napped some. We headed to the arena a little after 6pm.

The arena is on a hilltop less than a mile from the hotel. We parked quickly and got in line. We watched a medical helicopter circle and land at a nearby hospital. It got chilly as the sun went down but it was cozy. We stood in line for about forty minutes before being allowed inside.

The arena is municipally owned and a nice size for a concert. There are no bad seats and no need for over-amplification. A smoke machine made the whole place hazy.

The view from our seats.

I enjoy watching the behind-the-scenes stuff at concerts and our seats were perfect for that.

At 7:30 the lights went out and the shows began. The Brothers Osborne opened with Lee Brice and Chris Young following. I wasn't overly familiar with any of them but I did recognize some of the songs from radio. All the artists were all great. I noticed their live songs had more of a rock 'n' roll edge.

The concert was well organized and it didn't take long to get back to the hotel. We sat in the lobby area until about 1am in case Lee Brice or Chris Young showed up. We didn't see them so we went to bed. Tomorrow we head home.

February 8

Nothing special today. We got food at McDonalds and ate in the hotel dining room. Toast and eggs for me today. Mike drove first on this cloudy morning. I think everyone napped at one time or another. We stopped in Shelbyville to stretch. It seems to be our new stopping place. Donna's Powerball ticket was not a winner so we will continue to work for a living. Mike ended up driving the rest of the way home.

All too soon the trip was over. Back to real life. We got a puppy last fall and Donna has been missing him. They were both happy to see each other. We're even more ready for our June trip now.

See you on the Highway!

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