One of the things I love most about these 24-hour city guides is that they’re such an interesting representation of the individuals who craft them, from their personality to their lifestyle to what they do for a living. A. Micah Smith‘s 24-hour guide of Nashville is all about enjoying simple pleasures and humble comforts with his friends and family.
Raised in the Kansas City, Micah is a talented Creative Director who’s been living in Nashville, TN for the past four years with his wife, newborn daughter and their basset hound. He’s worked with clients from GQ to TED and Wilco to Spoon and has been published in books such as Gigposters, Vol. 1, The Little Book of Screenprinting, Illusive, and Neil Diamond is Forever. A day in his life is filled with good food, music, art and entertainment and ends as every day should — with a hot, deep-fried, glorious donut. Read more of Micah’s 24 Hours in Nashville after the jump! —Sabrina
I’ve always loved the idea of Nashville. Before visiting for the first time, I wanted to see the city that attracted people like Bob Dylan or Wayne White. Just like New York or LA, certain places attract their own kind of people and Nashville felt like our kind of town. My wife and I have been here for four years now and I love that we can still explore and find new things. My favorite thing about Nashville is the relationships we’ve made here and this guide highlights just a few of the things we love to do with our friends here in town. Enjoy!
8:30 am: Head out to grab some breakfast at Fido (1812 21st Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37212) with my wife. She loves the Local Latte. I love the McFido breakfast bagel.
10:00 am: Then, head over to Sevier Park (3021 Lealand Lane, Nashville, TN 37212) in 12 South and walk our basset hound, Lucy, with our daughter.
11:00 am: Run over to Grimey’s (1604 8th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203) and grab some new records. Frothy Monkey (1702 8th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203) has a deck next door, so I’ll grab a drink if I’m with a friend and we’ll compare our purchases. Music snobbery ensues.
12:30 pm: Arnold’s (605 8th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203) for lunch. Get the roast beef. Trust me. If you eat one meal in Nashville, this is it. They’re only open for lunch, so plan accordingly.
2 pm: If I have time after lunch, I’ll run over to Hatch Show Print (224 5th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203) downtown for some afternoon inspiration. Hatch Show is the longest-running print shop in North America. It’s been open since 1879 and is as strong as ever. When it comes to letterpress, it begins and ends with Hatch. It’s connected to (and run by) the Country Music Hall of Fame (222 5th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203). If you have a free half day or at least a few hours, the museum is definitely worth running through as well.
3 pm: If I have a client meeting in the afternoon or just want to hang out and get a little work done, I’ll stop by Pinewood Social (33 Peabody Street, Nashville, TN 37210) and grab a drink. Pinewood is a restaurant / bowling alley, but the main draw for me is the North wall of the bowling alley, which is a mural of letterpressed cans that can be moved and changed into different pictures, made by my friend Bryce, of Isle of Printing fame. Bryce also made the mural on the back wall of local coffee shop, Barista Parlor (519 Gallatin Avenue, Nashville, TN 37206). He’s good.
5 pm: If I have some prints to pick up, I’ll run by Fort Houston (500 Houston Street, Nashville, TN 37203) and grab my posters from my buddy Drew at his screen printing shop, Grand Palace. Fort Houston is a co-working space that houses a motorcycle shop, Grand Palace Silkscreen and Sideshow Sign Co. just to name a few.
7 pm: Baja Burrito (722 Thompson Lane, Nashville, TN 37204): One of my favorite spots in Nashville. I love eating on the patio here in the summer with friends…people swear by the fish tacos, but the brisket burrito is my jam. Try what you like, you can’t go wrong. (PS: Full disclosure, I made the cups!)
9 pm: If I have tickets to a band or comedian I’ve been wanting to see, it’s more than likely for a show at the Ryman (116 5th Ave North, Nashville, TN 37219). Originally built as a church in the late 1800’s, this auditorium was the home for the Grand Ole Opry for a good chunk of the last century. I’ve seen some amazing shows here and it’s something I’m always looking forward to.
11:30 pm: After a show, there’s nothing better than a flaming hot donut. My personal favorite is the apple fritter from Fox’s Donut Den (3900 Hillsboro Pike #2, Nashville, TN 37215) in Green Hills. Fox’s has been a Nashville staple for more than 40 years. They sell great donuts and they’re open late…what’s not to love?
Nashville Flea Market (500 Wedgewood Avenue, Nashville, TN 37203) – The fourth weekend every month at the Fairgrounds, Nashville has one of the biggest and best flea markets in the South. Amazing finds and lots of booths to choose from.
Third Man Records (623 7th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37203) – Jack White’s Headquarters for all of his wild and awesome ideas. If Jack White was Willy Wonka, then Third Man is his Chocolate Factory. It’s a record shop, it’s a warehouse, it’s an research lab, it’s a venue, it’s a recording studio, etc, etc. My wife and I have seen some pretty great shows in the Blue Room (Third Man’s venue) recorded live to acetate (vinyl). The world needs more Jack Whites.
Imogene + Willie (2601 12th Avenue South, Nashville, TN 37204) – A denim company located in 12 South, but so much more than that. Founders Matt & Carrie Eddmenson help shape the culture in Nashville as much with their clothing & denim line as they do with their creative vision and their inspiring storefront, which includes an incredible backyard that hosts the monthly Supper + Song series.
Gabby’s (493 Humphreys Street, Nashville, TN 37203) – Nashville’s burger stop. Like Arnold’s, it’s only open for lunch and it’s definitely worth the wait in line that will more than likely be there when you arrive.
Belcourt Theatre (2102 Belcourt Avenue, Nashville, TN 37212) – Nashville’s own independent theatre and one of my favorite places in town. This beautiful venue’s main theater also boasts a stage that was home to the Grand Ole Opry for a few years even before the Ryman. I frequent the Belcourt to see modern interpretations of classic film posters as well as newly commissioned film posters by great local artists like Sam Smith as much as I go to see the film’s themselves. This theatre is run by a great foundation that curates great movies and prides itself with an outstanding knowledge and passion for film history.