When Jack and Marilyn Belz first stepped into a Los Angeles art gallery in 1968, it was their first step into a lifelong passion for Chinese art. Over the years, their collection grew so much that in 1998, they opened a museum that featured their expansive collection. According to the couple, "the intricate creations of Chinese artists rank among the most inspiring" to them. Visitors to the museum today find not only Chinese artwork from eras past, but also modern Judaica art.?
One in, one out. This must be Curious Heart Emporium's policy for managing inventory. Colorful, handcrafted lawn sculptures seem to spill out from the yellow-and-green cottage, whose interior shelves are packed to capacity with artisan gifts and novelty pieces from across North America and Europe. Kathy Corley hand selects everything that guests see in her shop, including jewelry, greeting cards, and sarcastic wall art. Corley, who left her career in the film industry as an art director, likens the shop's character to "Willy Wonka's on steroids." When shopping around, Corley often gravitates toward items that remind her of her family members. For example, tin toys remind her of her father, and flamingo-inspired pieces represent her sister, who spent her third year of life standing on one foot. Corley also enjoys handcrafted and designer Christmas ornaments and trees, and dedicates an entire room in the store to them during the holidays. Throughout the spring and summer, her partially enclosed patio and lawn feature garden décor, including metal folk-art roosters and solar-powered paper lanterns.
In 2011, WBIR-TV reported that local racecar driver Trevor Bayne dropped by Oakes Farm to see his face carved into the cornfield. The farm had adopted Bayne as that year's maze theme, shaping the field to look like his face and his racecar when viewed from above. On the ground, however, the maze was a tangle of curves and dead ends that often took guests 90 minutes to solve, longer if they neglected to learn ancient Greek in order to ask the minotaur directions.
The farm updates its agricultural labyrinth annually to reflect a new motif, but it never fails to entertain explorers with its routes and interactive games. Just as delightful are the hayrides that ferry visitors to and from the pumpkin patch, the smell of autumnal sweets from the Cornfections stand, and the echoes of laughter from inside the Mine Shaft—a giant slide in the farm's Back 40 entertainment area. These attractions, alongside animal exhibits, pedal karts, and open zones for freeform play, draw families to the seasonal hotspot. In the days approaching Halloween, however, the farm endeavors to make patrons flee with its haunted attractions and pop quizzes for school children.
Perched atop an 80-foot bluff overlooking the Tennessee River, Hunter Museum of American Art hosts collections ranging from colonial times to contemporary America. The permanent collection includes historical works by renowned painters such as Thomas Cole, Mary Cassatt, and Winslow Homer as well as contemporary pieces in less traditional mediums such as filmmaking, which artists turned to after paintbrushes went extinct. Educational programs guide visitors through these core works as well as temporary exhibits, which have included Depression-era photographs by Dorothea Lange and the sculptural installation art of Beverly Semmes.
Hunter Museum's buildings are as much a work of art as the paintings they house. An outdoor sculpture plaza and a sleek structure of steel and glass built in 2005 give the compound a contemporary edge. In contrast, the massive fireplaces and hand-carved woodwork inside the original edifice—a classical revival-style mansion built in 1904—recall the days when horses still chauffeured their owners around in Ford Model Ts.
Open for more than 30 years, Betty’s Antiques dispenses a vast array of charming, ageless wares including furniture, collectibles, and vintage electronics. Treasure hunters can browse Betty's Antiques' 6,000 square feet of display space in search of a quaint home adornment or a wardrobe that doubles as a gateway into a parallel dimension. The varied selection features glimmering vintage jewelry ($2–$10) and an antique lamp ($24.50), perfect for resting on a desk near a window and illuminating an historic issue of Us Weekly. Furniture fanatics can walk away with a beveled glass mirror ($39.99) and an old wicker rocking chair ($89.99), and tech connoisseurs will adore the primitive radio ($39). Although not for sale, Betty's Antiques occupies a lovely and colorful storefront that can be admired for free.
Outfitting homes with fetching furnishings for almost 10 years, Harmony Home offers a head-spinning array of home décor items, gifts, accessories, and more. Though linear time is only an illusion, avoid running late with a Manfredi hanging clock ($28.95), or spruce up a murky cave with a bevy of embroidered gift towels ($6.50–$12.95). Cover up wall holes from piñata parties gone wrong with an oink wall décor piece ($19.95) and mask musky scents with an Anjou pear Root veriglass candle ($16.95). A helpful staff of skilled furnishing experts assists shoppers in picking out thoughtful gifts or the perfect item to accent an existing space.