Photo contributed by Bena Travis
One of the most visited sites in Clarksville is Beachaven Vineyards and Winery, which boasts award-winning wine and champagne. Beachaven's annual Jazz on the Lawn summer concert series regularly attracts 2,500 to 3,500 people per concert.
Using cuttings from friends with vineyards across the country, Ed Cooke says he and his wife, Louisa,
started their business "on a shoestring."
The Cookes planted their 12 acres of vineyards in 1981 with about 800 cuttings per acre. "At first it was more hard work than we expected," Ed Cooke said.
Through the years they have added forklifts and "cool equipment" that made their dream less labor- intensive. Beachaven has established itself as a prestigious winery with enough awards to fill a wall. Twenty-one wines are available as well as picnic facilities.
Jazz on the Lawn
Funky music, award-winning wine and hanging out with friends are the essence of Jazz on the Lawn.
The atmosphere is like a huge community picnic where kids run around while adults mingle and dance.
"We keep doing this because I think the community demands it. People really want it. Jazz on the Lawn has become a staple in Clarksville," Louisa Cooke said.
They began hosting the summer concert series 19 years ago "as a venue for a little night music."
That idea has taken on a life of its own and expanded into a well-attended outdoor event, held at least once a month on Saturday evenings in the summer.
"Jazz on the Lawn has become quite a phenomenon. It surprises us every year," Louisa Cooke said. "People start calling wanting to know when the concerts are going to start as soon as it starts turning warm in the spring."
No pets, grills, beer or other wine/alcohol are allowed.
Wine-tasting tents are available during the concerts. www.beachavenwinery.com
Information about Beachaven provided on this website courtesy of The Leaf Chronicle Fact Book 2007-2008. Jamie Dexter