Education in the Tennessee Mountains

To some, this may sound like an oxymoron.

That depends on where in the Tennessee Mountains.  The area around Sewanee is particularly blessed with truly outstanding schools due to the location of the University of the South.

My daughter is a Sophomore at St. Andrews Sewanee School, which is affiliated with the University.  Her experience there has been nothing short of inspiring.  For gifted kids, the school is challenging and rewarding.

At the elementary school level, I recommend the public school located in Sewanee on the University domain.  It is filled with the children of college professors and parents from the general community who care deeply about education. rates it 10 out of 10.

With the combination of Sewanee Elementary, St. Andrews and the University of the South, you won’t find a more enlightened educational system anywhere.

Just another reason why our Village in a mountain paradise can be a diverse community of ages, cultures and experiences, including working families with kids.

Highbrow in Appalachia?

One of the things I find unique and love about the Tennessee Mountain Community composed of the Sewanee, Monteagle, Tracy City Triangle is the Highbrow Culture that augments the local down-to-earth culture.  How many mountain retreat areas can you name in Tennessee that are anchored with an ivy league quality University?

Don’t believe me?  Check out this link that names Sewanee as one of the best places in Tennessee to have a highbrow conversation.

Progress Update

Dear Friends,

We’ve been making steady progress here at the Village, completing amenities and opening a new phase, 1B.  The entry sign is almost complete.  This week we will be adding the kiln-fired tile face with Sewanee Creek Logo nestled between cut stone columns like those found at the University in Sewanee.  It will be a thoughtful reflection of the quality that is being carefully crafted into every aspect of the Village resulting in unsurpassed quality of life.

All the lots on the new phase have 5+ acres with Bluff Views.  Two lots in particular are stunning with waterfalls and unique Indian Rock Houses.

I need to correct an error on our brochure.  Of the 750 acres in the Village development, there will not be 300 acres in the common nature preserve in the canyon.  It is actually 500 acres.  That is fully 2/3 of the land dedicated to a natural preserve.  With both sides of the deep Sewanee Creek Canyon under Village control, the stunning views will never change and the wildlife there will have permanent sanctuary.

We enjoyed movies on the big screen at the amphitheater over the 4th of July and were treated to a meteor shower that upstaged the fireworks in the bright, clear starlit sky.  We all thought it a good omen for things to come.  The private community website has been functioning for some months now.  Members can call me to schedule a movie at the amphitheater that will show up on the Village private website calendar.  We look forward to a time when our residents regularly enjoy each other’s company at the amphitheater for all kinds of entertainment.  Call or email me if you would like access to the community website, which is now open to prospective buyers and friends of the Village.  There are many photos and conversations there that candidly chronicle our progress.

My own house in the Village is nearing completion.  Several others are looking to begin construction soon.

I live on site and would be delighted to give you a personal tour.  When you come, be sure to wear sturdy hiking shoes so you can enjoy some of nature*s wonders on trails below the bluff’s edge.

Give me a call to set up a visit.  Even in the heat wave the whole country has been experiencing, temperatures are cooler on the mountain and the mountain breeze makes it a great place to be.

All the best, Grant

Amphitheater Inauguration: Movies on the 4th

We just enjoyed a family reunion over the 4th with barbecue and movies on the big screen under the stars at our lovely amphitheater on the bluff.  For those of you who have requested information via this website, my apologies for the slow response, but we’ve been busy this week just enjoying life with loved ones.

Our surveyor just discovered a huge new cave on Sewanee Creek at the bottom of the canyon.  We had wanted to explore it during the reunion, but ran out of time.  That adventure will just have to wait for another day.

Life in the Village

After a recent visit, my friend, Kerry Clay, wrote down his vision of life in the Village on Sewanee Creek.  I think he did a nice job of capturing it, so I’d like to share it with you.

“It’s Saturday morning and what are we going to do today?

We could watch the beautiful sunrise across the mountains from our back porch.
We could take the trail down the gorge to see how much water is flowing from Swallow Tail Falls.
Let’s take the east trail today that goes under Miller Falls. We might just go all the way down to the caves.
There’s a deer and look at those wild turkeys. They will always be here because of over 500 acres of nature preserve that all of us share in common.
Let’s wade the creek and look for natural treasures.
We could go down to the caves on our ATVs; we have an easement to hundreds of acres of 4-wheeler trails nearby.
Oh, these trees are magnificent, tall oaks, hickory, hemlock, maple and walnut. The ferns, mountain laurel, redbud and dogwoods, the hoot of an owl or cry of a hawk.

The big game is tonight and we have the amphitheater reserved. We’ll have steaks and ribs, burgers and dogs, on the bluff under the stars. Watching the game in high definition on the huge amphitheater screen will be better than being at the stadium.
I am amazed with our fiber optic communications systems for phone, computer and TV.

Last night we all rented a DVD and watched a great movie.
With the canyon view as a backdrop, the fire ring aglow, stars and full mountain moon. What a beautiful night it was.

We love the feeling of community here, sharing our big covered porch with close friends, our neighbors.  Drop by anytime for a visit. Let’s try that new cake recipe with coffee and fresh strawberries from the village garden ……mmmmmmmm it’s better out here.

There’s just something very special about our Village Called ‘Sewanee Creek'”.

Why you should move to our Village in the Tennessee Mountains

This morning I received a very long inquiry filled with all the right questions.  I thought my answers might be useful to anyone interested in the Village.  Here is my response:

Dear Shirley,

It sounds like you may be exactly the kind of neighbors I would like to live near.  I will try to answer with some of the depth of detail you gave me.

As you probably read on my website, I am just now breaking ground on my own home in the Village.  As soon as it is finished I will be moving my family here permanently from the Louisville Kentucky area.  I have 5 kids with one still at home who is 14.  She will be attending St. Andrews.  It is a GREAT school.  Although we are in a remote, naturally beautiful area, we are blessed with the presence of St. Andrews and the University of the South, both outstanding liberal arts schools.  Even if your kids do not choose to attend one of these, you will enjoy the cultural benefits of great orchestras, plays, lectures, poets and art that this brings to the mountain.

If you like four very moderate seasons, the weather here could not be better.  We are about a thousand feet higher than Chattanooga which lowers the humidity and the temperature about 10 degrees in the summer.  We have frequent breezes, but no hurricanes.

The main thing that distinguishes the Village on Sewanee Creek from other developments on the mountain (and by the way, they are all drop-dead gorgeous) is the sense of community we are building here.  I guess that stems partly from the fact that I have chosen to live here and I love people.  So I am putting in the kinds of amenities that bring people together as friends and I am committed to seeing that they are actively used.  You will find that the people who have lived here for generations are some of the finest people on earth.  Hunting, fishing and outdoor life are the primary modes of recreation.  Your husband would love that.  I am putting about 500 acres in the canyon below the village into a permanent natural preserve so it will always be pristine and beautiful.  There are plenty of churches of every kind.  I am personally very active and serve in my own church.

Land prices in Tennessee are some of the lowest in the nation for comparably beautiful land, but beginning to rise as this area has been discovered, but as the amphitheater and other amenities are completed, the Village will become an even more highly sought after place to live and lot values will increase.  I purchased this 700+ acre tract and began working on it only about 6 months ago.  Of the 15 lots available in phase 1A, six are already sold.  Also, Phase 1A is the most affordable section as the lots are smaller (about 2 acres) and not directly on the bluff, although some have breathtaking views of the canyons.  Future phases will be 5+ acres.

Your daughter is right.  If you come for a visit be prepared to be infected with the urge to move immediately.   I was.

All the best,
Grant Miller