Are You Ready...for Nashville?
As the city of education, Nashville boasts 14 colleges and universities, attracting some 30,000 students from the United States and around the world (about a third of them to Vanderbilt) and an impressive mix of public and private elementary, middle and high schools.
The city claims one of the largest urban parks and greenway systems in the United States. The region's abundance of lakes and rivers make fishing, boating and other water sports a signature aspect of recreation and life in the region.
The arts flourish, too:
- The Frist Center for the Visual Arts presents exhibitions of the world's greatest art in a spectacularly renovated former Post Office building.
- The downtown library is truly a magnificent building, incorporating a delightful children's library, computer facilities, and an impressive collection of books, tapes CDs and videos.
- The Tennessee Performing Arts Center hosts performances by the symphony, opera, ballet and theater groups, including its annual "Broadway Series." The Nashville Symphony Orchestra, critically acclaimed at their 2000 Carnegie Hall appearance, has begun construction of a new home: a grand four-story neo-classical structure, scheduled to open in late 2006. Vanderbilt itself has two excellent venues at Blair School of Music, where faculty and students, as well as other professional music and dance companies, regularly present performances for the community.
- The Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum is both a cultural research institution and a premier museum of America's indigenous music.
Nashville has emerged also as a home of professional sports, entertainment and fun.
The Tennessee Titans bring NFL action to the downtown riverfront. The NHL's Nashville Predators offer 70-plus home games a year on the ice at Gaylord Entertainment Center, also the venue for many rock and pop concerts and other events. The Nashville International Superspeedway offers NASCAR action from its state-of-the-art facility in neighboring Wilson County. And, of course, Vanderbilt's sports teams are members of the highly competitive Southeastern Conference.
Historic 2nd Avenue offers a lively nightlife, with restaurants, coffee houses, nightclubs and shops, many of them housed in renovated warehouses that echo Nashville's history of river commerce.
Nationally known or locally owned, a wide assortment of continental and ethnic restaurants, retailers and businesses are as easily found within city limits as historic neighborhoods, tree-lined roads and community markets.
Nashville has renewed itself by attracting newcomers who want to live in a healthy, welcoming community and be a part of its future.
- Hillsboro Village is a collegiate, young adult neighborhood sandwiched between the Richland-West End and Hillsboro-Belmont neighborhoods. Older homes, most notably 20th-century bungalows and four squares, surround the village, where restaurants, unique shops, an artisan bakery, an ice cream parlor, a bookstore and a florist make the area a neighborhood hot spot.
- Sylvan Park, an increasingly popular neighborhood in Nashville, features a variety of restaurants and markets, McCabe Park and Community Center and a golf course. A largely blue-collar neighborhood until the early 1980s, Sylvan Park's charm derives from its renovated 1910 to 1940s bungalows and Queen Anne cottages and homes.
- Another nearby neighborhood is Green Hills, a more recently developed area with a decidedly sophisticated attitude. There you will find upscale restaurants, retail establishments, and The Bluebird Cafe, where some of Nashville's best musical talent is showcased in an intimate setting. Homes in the neighborhood were mostly built between the 1940s and 1960s.
- Across the Cumberland River and twelve minutes from Vanderbilt, the eclectic, diverse neighborhoods of East Nashville have revitalized inner-city living. Restored Victorian homes and renovated bungalows line the streets, while new restaurants and bars continue to spring up throughout the area.
- Downtown living in high-rise apartment buildings and stylish lofts is also on the upswing, while the downtown neighborhood of Germantown continues to thrive with its restored homes, trendy restaurants and bars.
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