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Another Successful Cooling at the Cave

Dunbar Cave State Natural AreaClarksville, TN – On Saturday July 28th, the mouth of Dunbar Cave was a buzz with activity.  It was time for the annual Cooling at the Cave event, sponsored by the Friends of Dunbar Cave.  As the afternoon temperatures soared, the local flocked to cool down in the constant cool breeze blowing from the mouth of the cave.

The Cumberland Winds Band provided the music, while children danced and the adults clapped.  The Friends of Dunbar Cave provided ice-cold lemonade, water, and home-baked cookies.  Many played board games while tapping the toes.  Back in the days before air conditioning, this is how locals cooled off and fellowshipped with neighbors.

Cooling at the Cave on July 28th, 2012
Cooling at the Cave on July 28th, 2012

Although no official count was taken, but most of the 100 chairs provided by the Friends groups were full; it was standing room only.   Several in attendance recognized the good work of the Friends group and  became members on the spot.

Local artisan, Jack Bastin, graciously lent his talents to the event.  earlier this spring, park staff had to remove an ash tree from near the cave.  Staff counted the rings and dated the tree to about 1799.  Jack took the 213 year old ash wood, and using his talents on the lathe, turned the wood into bowls and pens.  He graciously offered the pieces to anyone for a $20 donation to the Friends group.  The bowls went quick, and several pens are still available.  Also several patrons donated $30 for signed copies of local author Larry Matthew’s second edition definitive historical guide to Dunbar cave.  If you missed out and would like a book or pen, please contact me.

Smiles were had by all
Smiles were had by all

Judging by all the smiles and laughter, a good time was had by all.  It takes a lot of volunteers to put on such a large and successful event.  We would like to thank all the volunteers that made this event happen, especially Ms. Barbara Wilbur, who coordinates the annual event,, and Suva Bastin, who coordinates the refreshments. Thanks to Friends members Jim Hancock, Beverly Fisher, and Bill Larson for contributing photos; and the City of Clarksville and Golf Pro Jeff Vaughn for donating the use of a Golf Cart from the Swan Lake Golf Course to ferry people from the parking lot to the cave entrance, and Bill Larson for driving it for us.

The Friends of Dunbar Cave is a non-profit group that raises money for the city’s only State Park, as well as being an advocate group for the park’s historical and natural preservation.  In the past the Friends have provided mulch for the hiking trails, educational panels along the trails, computers for park staff, and much more.  If you would like more information about the group, or would like to join or make a donation, please see the link at the bottom of the page.

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Blayne Clements
I am a 30 something graduate from Austin Peay State University, where I graduated in 1997 with two majors (Accounting and Finance). I am a very happily married man, with one beautiful daughter. I enjoy a professional life of public service and a personal life of travel, reading, music, and always trying to learn from others.

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