Category Archives: Boating

Linden, The Little Town that Could With Help From the Dumonts

Lunch and music at the Commodore Music Café was a treat. Few restaurants offer live music with lunch.

American Press Travel News-June 19, Linden, TN.–Bob and Barb “On The Road Again.” When we arrived in the small town of Linden, Tennessee we almost immediately felt at home. We had been invited to stay at the newly remodeled, and upgraded Commodore Hotel. We met Kathy and later Michael Dumont, and realized they were on a mission. However, they were incredibly friendly and accommodating. Michael took us on a delightful trip through the county, and also showed us his remodeled B&B outside of town, and close to the Tennessee River (we’ll be back) that has more species of fish in its depth than any other American river (according to Mr. Benson of the Chattanooga Aquarium) and I plan to get close and personal with some of them as soon as possible. The Commodore held 22-rooms at the hotel and next door annex, and all done-up first rate, but with very reasonable cost. www.commodorehotellinden.com (931) 589-3224–114 East Main St. Linden TN. 37096

We were invited to fish with the Mayor, Wess Ward, and Perry Counties Sherriff, Nick Weems, who also brought his boat, and fished with us on the Buffalo River for smallmouth and largemouth bass (more on fishing in part-2 of our Linden experience later). Travel writers do travel on their stomachs, and we knew we would be in for a treat with the live music, as we chowed on terrific fare at the corner Music Café in the hotel.

While I fished, Barb went next door on main St., and just after I arrived back at the hotel, we availed ourselves of the opportunity to do “Wave- Painting” at the Buffalo River Co-Op Craft Immersion project. Lots of fun, met great folks doing their crafts “thing” in wood and textiles. We were sent our little paintings to our home after they finally dried. We walked main street and met proprietors of Sparky and Ringos, Dimples Shop & Restaurant, Custom Creations Jewelry and also ate at Tims Video Corner Café our second evening in town. We also met Allyson Hinson Dickey, the new Chamber Director who offered us the Keys to the town (so-to-speak) for us to visit and experience. The Dumont’s invited us to have dinner with them, even though their restaurant was closed that evening. Before I forget; we also visited Mouse tail Landing State Park with Michael Dumont ,and everyone that enjoys camping would love the facilities and hiking ops.

When Michael and Kathy Dumont decided to change their life from Rhode Island to a little town between Nashville and Memphis, TN., they moved to Linden, a town that had seen better days before the Interstate way-laid most of its business and tourist traffic, as new interstates have done so, all over America (remember route 66) they chose the gorgeous rural area between Memphis and Nashville, and purchased land for their home, and acquired several building in the town of Linden. Linden has a backyard of the Buffalo River and the Tennessee River, rife with fabulous landscapes and wildlife.  * Stay tuned for part-2 our visit to Perry County, fishing, The Buffalo River Resort,  and an unusual museum on the Tennessee River.

We were strolling the neat little town of Linden!!
Larger than life, Minnie Pearl statue. A well known figure from Linden. She is in the lobby of the Commodore Hotel.
Barb heading for the hotel. The red car is a 1949 perfect condition, Dodge that belongs to the Dumont’s.

 

 

 

 

 

One of the small mouth bass while fishing with the Mayor and Sheriff of Linden and Perry County,
Newspaper article reminiscent of how folks in a small town (Similar to Mayberry RFD) takes time out for just having fun! Article was on the wall of the hotel lobby.
Sheriff of Perry County took a time-out to take me fishing!!
Mayor of Linden also took me fishing!!!
Sheriff and mayor were a “hoot” to fish with and get to know!!
While I went fishing, Barb took a class in art at the Buffalo River Artisans Cooperative, next door to the Commodore Hotel.

Images of the Week!

A facsimile of Davy Crockett’s flint-lock rifle.
On the roaders, travel on our stomachs. This pineapple steak was a hit!!!
Barb loves fireplaces as I do too!
Japanese Hibachi Restaurant; Hokaido in Port St Lucie does lobster very well!!
Curt Gowdy and President Bush out fishing with Bob Epstein (Credit Bob T. Epstein for image) I miss these two fabulous anglers!!
Hi John, the best realtor in the Keys!! We all ate fresh snapper on this trip with the best charter captain in the Keys or probably Florida! Skip Bradeen rules the seas!!! 

At Kona Kai In Key Largo! We are attending Islamorada Birthday Trip, Via The Blue Chip 2 Sportfishing Adventures

American Press Travel News-May 5th–Key Largo and Islamorada, Florida Keys-“Bob & Barb On the Road Again” and “Stopping to Smell the Roses & Admiring the Hibiscus Flowers.. So our son David had his 50th Birthday and was spending his day on the Charter Craft, Blue Chip 2 with veteran Captain Skip Bradeen, his mate David and my sons friends John ElKoury, Billy Pope and Dave, all part of Coastal Reality of the Florida Keys, Allan Pope owner of Keys Life Magazine, Eric Dyer another of David’s childhood and lifelong friends and Captain Key Largo; my younger son Brian Epstein who runs his backcountry boat out of Key Largo and who knows where the big ones lurk and jerk the lines.
The day was blustery, but on the Blue Chip 2 we caught fish, the heck with the wind and swells. Everyone caught dinner sized yellowtail snapper, and some tuna including bonita and down deep Mutton Snappers. It was a great day and it finished with a special fishing and boating themed and decorated cake, too!

At the end of day yours truly went on Captain Skips Radio Show to talk about the day and my published Keys themed books. We ate yellowtail of the day and at least one beer at the Moose Club. Kona Kai 800-365-STAY—In Key Largo, fish here, eat here and love here!!! By the way: You can buy my signed books at Kona Kai too!

Entrance to Kona Kai Resort and Gallery. Where we stayed during Dave’s birthday sportfishing bash.
Kona Kai Pool and hot tub.
Left to right Birthday Boy Dave, Captain Skip Bradeen, Captain Key Largo, Brian Epstein and David the Blue Chip 2 Mate.

Fly buddy out to say Hi to the birthday boy, Dave.

Fly buddy out to say Hi to the birthday boy, Dave.
We kept enough yellowtail snapper for all of us to have a fresh filet of fish dinner.
Realtor, John ElKoury, a veteran and a great Islamorada resident!!
Kona Kai Paradise in Key Largo~
Skips Radio Show! I’m the guest.

 

 

Continue Alabama Rising Part 2

American Press Travel News–Part 2 of Alabama visit by Bob and Barb Epstein “On The Road Again”–After a great dinner at Lulu’s-owned by Jimmy Buffet’s sister. Lulu’s restaurant has become an iconic emporium of drink and vittles, and the place was a real happening for families and anyone wanting to visit an American Caribbean spot full of fun and frivolities.
Last month’s article ended with a trip out on the Gulf for red snapper with Captain Randy Boggs of Distraction Charters. Fishing was excellent and we caught and released several fish in the 3-6 pound class with a couple even larger. No, we could not keep any fish for dinner, but the catch and release that Captain Boggs believes is important for the future of the fishery and was A-OK with us too! Do I recommend this Captain? Absolutely! Beverly Hogg really enjoyed herself hauling in these strong-pulling red snapper.
(www.distractioncharters.com Give Boggs or Captain Troy Frady a call at 251-975-8111 These guys are terrific at what they do. Their mate, 39-year old Ken Wright had the right stuff too!
After the fishing we headed out on an informative nature cruise with Sailaway Charters-we eased our way through the estuaries and backwaters of Longs Bayou and Wolf Bay. We learned about oystering techniques, crabbing and shrimping which is big business in this area. We checked out the various sea-birds and had dolphin (major residents and fishers) come over to inspect us several times. For more information, visit wwwgeocites.com/sailorskip
The next day we headed for Weeks Bay National Estuarine Research and Education Center- we meandered along a 5,000 foot elevated boardwalk that winds through 6,000 acres of coastal habitats and wetlands, including a protected estuary.