Starting at noon and going until 8 p.m., this celebration will include all manner of festivities. The Mercantile will be open for Christmas shopping! There are lots of ideas for gifts, including Red Ryder BB guns, fancy and not-so-fancy boots, Western jackets and dusters, great silver and beaded jewelry, overalls (some with “Hee Haw” themed pictures), all the way down to vintage stocking stuffers. The Hat Bar stocks authentic Stetson hats and a large selection of vintage hats. They can be customized with handcrafted hatbands that are as ornate as you wish. Initials can be branded inside or out, as well. What a great gift!
Mama Tried, a food truck, will be in full swing, offering soup and sandwiches. The Yard, an open-air music venue, will be open for hot chocolate, and a jolly Santa Clause (who sounds a lot like Lewie) will be visiting with children and adults alike! Ho-Ho-Ho! What fun! The actual parade will start at 4 p.m. on Cherry Street.
This is also a celebration of the one-year anniversary of the Mercantile, which, after about 120 years, is now a clothing store, soda fountain, coffee and snack bar, local history museum, music venue, event space, chapel and prayer room. And, once a month, it’s also a church.
To Becky, the entire project is a “God thing.” While driving in Florida, Becky said, “I just felt a tugging on my heart that we needed to do something for my little hometown.” And, after careful prayer, the couple is renovating Dunlap building by building.
Becky Hatfield Card grew up in Dunlap, loving the beauty of the countryside of Sequatchie County. Her dad was a pharmacist and avid hunter, fisherman and country music lover, and Becky grew up loving that genre of music. In fact, Becky met Dolly Parton when she was 10, and her dad fished with Porter Wagoner.
Becky had a dental practice in this little town for over 20 years, and Lewie is retired but is still CEO of Card Monroe Corp. He owns property in beautiful Sequatchie County and has enjoyed hunting and fishing here all of his life. They are both committed to this project, as are more than one resident. Dunlap’s Cody McCarver, formerly of Confederate Railroad, has partnered with the Cards in the resurrection of this charming town.
Come on to Dunlap, not just for the parade and festivities but anytime. It’s a beautiful drive and a step back in time, as well as a breath of fresh air. Come take an afternoon to savor the memories of yesteryear.
Stay tuned about this project in an upcoming issue of the Mountain Mirror.
by Judy Rowland