An audio exploration of Ashland City, Tennessee, reveals a city of 4,000 located only 20-miles from Nashville with abundant public hunting and fishing opportunities, industrial access by rail and the Cumberland River, interesting people, local hospitals, three sets of convenient public schools and inexpensive land prices.
Interviews began with a lively discussion with sisters Rose Tidwell and Jenny McKnight over the remains of a fish dinner at the Riverside Restaurant and Marina overlooking the Cumberland. This was followed up with discussions on the fine arts of catfish cooking with Manager Eric Cannon. The Rev. Paul R. Gupon filled us in on some aspects from local history from his lawn chair behind the Court House and the Director of Business Relations Ann Thompson supplied detailed information on Cheatham County’s businesses and other towns. Among the new developments are the high-rise Braxton Condominiums which have just been completed and will soon be ready for occupancy and the Vantage Pointe independent living facility for retirees.
Although I was originally attracted to the area by “Caught Up” bowfishing guide Eric Collier, I was sufficiently impressed by the area to investigate the county’s potential for retirees and others who might wish to locate near Nashville, but prefer small-town life. The contrast between Ashland City and “Music City” could not be more profound.
I shot the strange bowfishing bow terribly, but did manage to get some fish including several buffalo, common carp, two species of gar, a quill back and redhorse creek sucker. The buffalo provided not only a meal when I returned home but a recipe for the show along with the accumulated scales which I boiled to make a gelatin-based aspic.
Ads on the show included Billy Bob’s Buffalo Cooker with a 600-lb. lid and hoist for deep frying buffalo and SIN’s (Synthetic Industrial Non-Nitritive, Inc.’s) glop fish, made from the best of coal tar, petroleum and agricultural waste byproducts, which require no cleaning and provide no known nutritive value while giving the diner the salt, butter and sugar tastes that he craves.