The May 2022 Edition

What would it take for Nashville to host a Super Bowl? A new stadium and hotel rooms

By TOM WOOD / May 13, 2022

Barring unforeseen circumstances, Nashville will host a Super Bowl before the end of the decade. I explore that possible scenario for the Ledger in its May 13-19 edition.

That may sound like a bold prediction, but based on ongoing discussions between the Tennessee Titans, the state and Nashville Mayor John Cooper, it appears the Titans will be playing in an enclosed stadium by the time the 2026 season kicks off … as well as having more than 45,000 hotel rooms available for Music City visitors.

If both of those conditions are met, it could mean the NFL will award the Super Bowl to Nashville as early as the 2028 or 2029 seasons.

A Nashville Super Bowl could be held as early as 2028.

Ledger cover by Mike Hopey

“I think we are a renovated or new stadium away from being able to host a (Super Bowl),” says Butch Spyridon, CEO of the Nashville Convention & Visitors Corp. “We have certainly reached out to the NFL. We have expressed our strong level of interest. “Their pattern of behavior is – as teams and cities have renovated or built new stadiums – they have tended to reward those markets with the second-largest sporting event in the world.”

Here are some of the other things I’ve written about and done in 2022.

Auto industry shifts gears to electric

On June 16, 1983, the first vehicle was produced at the sparkling new Nissan plant in Smyrna and on October 21 of that same year, an official dedication ceremony was held at the plant. Now, almost 40 years later, company officials won’t say what or how they’ll commemorate four decades in Tennessee, but it was a moment in history that the whole state should celebrate.

I take an in-depth look at the subject in the May 6-13 edition of the Ledger, focusing on the past, present and electric future of the industry.

Tennessee’s automotive ecosystem ranks No. 3 in the state’s gross domestic product behind agriculture and tourism. More than 920 auto-related companies operate in 88 of the state’s 95 counties. There are four major manufacturers with Nissan, General Motors and Volkswagen plus Ford’s megasite near Memphis that will begin operations in 2025. Three companies have their North American headquarters in the Nashville are – Nissan, Mitsubishi and Bridgestone.

Tennessee’s automotive industry ranks No. 1 in the region.

Ledger cover by Mike Hopey

Tennessee isn’t the only southeastern state making its mark in the automotive industry, but it is by far the biggest. “I think that the industry is expanding all over the place right now. The South is definitely getting a big share of it,” says Alisa Priddle of MotorTrend magazine.

Lorrie Morgan sings praises of hot chicken

Everybody, it seems, knows all about Nashville hot chicken these days. I was in Los Angeles in late March (see below) and went to a seafood restaurant that had Nashville hot chicken on its menu. The waiter said it was one of their most popular item.

Country music star Lorrie Morgan and friends are now singing the praises of the Nashville delicacy, as I wrote about for Main Street Nashville on May 4. Lorrie is joined by more than a half-dozen of her fellow artists on – appropriately – “The Nashville Hot Chicken Song,” which was written by her brother Marty Morgan and Corey Lee Barker.

Lorrie Morgan is a hot chicken aficionado.

“We had some of our good friends that dearly love hot chicken, so they all agreed to give us a little piece of their time and come in and sing a few lines,” said Lorrie, who has been eating hot chicken for more than five decades. She said her father, the late Country Music Hall of Famer George Morgan, used to bring hot chicken home after Grand Ole Opry performances.

Joining Lorrie on the cut are Darryl Worley, Larry Gatlin, Vince Gill, Tracy Lawrence, Pam Tillis, Jeannie Seely, Rhonda Vincent, Adam Warner and Morgan’s son, Jesse Keith Whitley.

Congrats on the Oscar Nom, Brian

In April, I was in Los Angeles to support stepson Brian Chumney, who was nominated for his first Academy Award. Brian was the supervising sound editor for “West Side Story.” The Oscar went to “Dune,” but it was a great honor for him and a great trip to be able to be there for him.

Brian was profiled in the March 18 edition of the Ledger by Catherine Mayhew.

Brian and I enjoyed a breakfast in Santa Monica.

I got to do a lot of sightseeing with Brian, enjoyed some great meals and fellowship and couldn’t be more proud of him. He’s already had a wonderful career and the best is yet to come.

Franklin Book Festival is June 3-4

I had a great time on April 23-24 at the Franklin Main Street Festival, only my second live appearance since the COVID pandemic began 27 months ago. I spent part of the weekend in the Authors Circle booth with several local writers, meeting and greeting folks and selling a few books in the process.

Meet local authors at the June 3-4 Franklin Book Festival at Williamson Co. Library.

On June 3-4, I will be with even more authors at the Franklin Book Festival, a renewal of our 2019 pandemic-interrupted gathering. There will be hourly panel discussions on various aspects of writing in different genres by award-winning writers beginning at 10 a.m., on Saturday and at noon on Sunday. Both days end at 5 p.m. One panel on mysteries and thrillers features Steven Womack, Jaden Terrell and Alana White. There is no admission fee and we hope to see you there!

Killer Nashville Mag: Co-Writing a Book

The February edition of Killer Nashville Magazine, a free resource for writers, has a featured interview with legendary author Dean Koontz, who explains how he comes up with villains we love to hate.

Another of the mag’s other articles is one I co-wrote with local author Michael J. Tucker on Co-Writing a Book. It’s about our experience of writing A Night on the Town e-book and subsequent feature-length screenplay we wrote.

A Night on the Town, available on Amazon, is about a fatal rideshare encounter.

-Submitted photo

Give it a read and then check out the e-book. Killer Nashville is an international writers conference held the third weekend of August. This year’s event will feature Hank Phillipi Ryan as the featured author.

In other writing news, the Authors Circle will host the Franklin Book Festival on June 4-5 at Williamson County Library on Columbia Avenue. More later on that event.

As always, thanks for reading.

Tom Wood

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