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Bert Driver Nursery Adds Beer Garden

June 8, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

For years it has been a wholesale Retail Garden Center for plants, trees, and shrubs and while that is still the main focus of the business, Bert Driver Nursery has added a beer garden and serves as an occasional entertainment venue.

The Burlap Room Beer Garden and Tap House is located at the former drive-in theater building inside of Bert Driver Nursery. It opened with an event celebrating Earth Day, April 21 serving Calf Killer Beers, made in Sparta, and Theoretic Ales produced locally by Alex Von Seitz, who operates a licensed in-home brewery at his residence in DeKalb County.

“As we discussed with them how they make beer and learned what they are all about, we decided to feature their craft beers because it was here local in Smithville and DeKalb County so after doing some research we decided to open a beer garden here at Bert Driver Nursery. It is inside the same building as the former DeKalb County Drive-In Movie Theatre so the history of the concession stand has been a drive-in movie theatre, a nursery, and now a beer garden,” said Driver.

“We are featuring seven taps both from theoretical ale from here in Smithville and Calf Killer beer out of Sparta. Those are the two beers we feature at any time through the week. During our normal nursery business operation hours we will be glad to let you taste the beers or even purchase them and fill growlers. We do have extended tap room hours on Thursdays and Fridays and Saturdays we’ll stay open until 8 p.m.,” said Driver.

The Burlap Room Beer Garden and Tap House will also serve as host to music and entertainment events this summer including a Summer Solstice celebration on June 23.

“Along the way we have been trying to feature local music as well. We have had a couple of events here. In fact we have one upcoming on Saturday, June 23. That will be a summer solstice celebration here at the nursery in the burlap room. We will have four bands and food trucks. Its kid friendly and pet friendly. There might even be a sno-cone truck here. There is a $15 cover charge but children ages 12 and younger can get in free. We will have local featured artists ranging from blues music to reggae, Americana rock, to singer-songwriter so we would love for you to come join us on that day to celebrate the summer solstice,” Driver said.




Baxter Man Killed in Pickup Truck Crash

June 7, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

The driver of a pickup truck died in a crash Thursday afternoon on Medley-Amonette Road (State Highway 96) near the Putnam County line.

Dead is 56 year old Morris D. Carr of Baxter.

According to the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Carr was traveling north in a red GMC Canyon when the truck exited the roadway to the right and traveled for around 100 yards before it flipped onto its side where the passenger side compartment was pinned against a tree near a rock bluff. The driver was pinned in the passenger compartment in between the truck and tree. Carr was not wearing his seatbelt. He died at the scene.

Members of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department Rescue Team and Liberty Station responded along with DeKalb EMS and the DeKalb County Sheriff’s Department.

The crash was investigated by Trooper Danielle Neal of the Tennessee Highway Patrol




Bobby Charles Martin Inducted Into Tennessee School Bus Driver Hall of Fame (VIEW VIDEO HERE)

June 7, 2018
By: Dwayne Page

Former DeKalb County school bus driver Bobby Charles Martin has been inducted into the Tennessee School Bus Driver Hall of Fame.

The addition of Martin to the Hall of Fame was announced Tuesday at the Tennessee Association of Pupil Transportation President’s Awards Dinner in the Symphony Hall at the Music Road Hotel Convention Center in Pigeon Forge.

Martin retired two years ago after driving a school bus for 49 years. He was nominated for the award by Jimmy Sprague, Transportation Supervisor for the DeKalb County School System.

In making the nomination, Sprague said Martin began his bus driver duties with the DeKalb County Board of Education in 1968 on a route that encompassed the Dry Creek area. During almost five decades as a school bus driver, Martin logged 1.6 million miles without having been involved in a single accident.

The TAPT School Bus Driver Hall of Fame was created to recognize and honor Tennessee School Bus Drivers who have made outstanding contributions to their local school transportation department and who, by virtue of those contributions, are considered to be among the industry’s most dedicated individuals.

Induction into the TAPT Hall of Fame represents one of the highest honors that TAPT can bestow on an individual. Honorees must meet the highest standards of personal and professional integrity, including distinguished service to the school children in their school district.

Inductees must have demonstrated an extraordinary commitment of time and energy to the safe transportation of our Tennessee school children.

In addition to his bus driver duties, Martin has been a minister for 33 years. He began his affiliation with the United Methodist Church as a pastor in 1986 and has served many churches over the years. Martin was also manager of the Dowelltown/Liberty Water Department for more than 30 years. Martin is a US Army veteran and served for the Ground Observance Corps of the US Air Force during his teenage years.

He and his wife Audrey reside in Liberty. They have been married for 24 years.

Martin has fond memories as a school bus driver and he made many lasting friendships.

“Over the years of driving, Bobby was proud to tell me that he treated all children equally and built many relationships with the children and their parents,” said Sprague.

“He still has people who tell him they remember him as their bus driver and how they still love him for the kindness and consideration he showed them,” he added.

Martin said he is honored to have been inducted into the Tennessee School Bus Driver Hall of Fame and is thankful to Sprague for nominating him.




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