Lee News

Encore Class Walks Through Tennessee’s History


By Naudia O’Steen

Lee University Encore students from the “Tennessee in Tennis Shoes” course, designed for students age 60 and above, recently completed a semester of trips that took them to various historical sites throughout Tennessee.

This spring, the class traveled to the Abraham Lincoln Library & Museum in Harrogate; the Museum of Appalachia in Norris, Historic Jonesborough, the oldest town in the state; Cumberland Caverns in McMinnville; and Sergeant York State Park in Pall Mall.

“All the trips are excellent, and I enjoy getting to spend time with citizens from the Cleveland area that are my age,” said Encore student Larry Janisewski.

At the Museum of Appalachia, a live history museum that focuses on the heritage of the Appalachian area and keeping the spirit of Appalachia preserved, the class toured the grounds and walked through the interactive museum.

“The museum focused on the longtime history of Tennessee and what has happened around the Appalachia area,” said Pam Edgemon, who has been in the Encore program for seven years. “I found the historic jail most interesting; it had iron beds and was just a tiny box.”

Jonesborough, which was settled in the early 1700s, was a class favorite. The town was frequented by people such as Daniel Boone and Andrew Jackson, and it was also a place that advocated early on for the abolition of slavery.

“Jonesborough was really interesting,” said Sheryl Hadsall, who has been enrolled in the class every year since its inception. “The old town was well taken care of and people are trying to renovate even more and revitalize it.”

Another highlight of the semester was the trip to Sergeant York State Park, which honors one of the most decorated soldiers of World War I. During this excursion, students were introduced to the Sergeant’s son.

Encore Students Travel Tennessee
Encore students at Sergeant York State Park

Dr. David Altopp, who started the Lee Flames baseball program in 1996, leads the trips. He has taught at several universities over a 45-year span, 35 of which he coached baseball.

“I thoroughly enjoy my role as the leader of ‘Tennessee in Tennis Shoes,’” said Altopp. “I have always had a love for travel and meeting people, and the people involved in this Encore program are the best. We all share a love for travel and the fellowship is outstanding.”

The Encore program at Lee invites students aged 60 and above to enrich their lives through experiencing the academic excellence and Christ-centered atmosphere of Lee University by enrolling in university courses and mini-courses specifically designed for them.

The class will be offered again during the fall 2017 Encore line up with five different locations. For more information about the class, contact Altopp at daltopp@leeuniveristy.edu.

For more information about the Encore program at Lee, contact Bethany McCoy at (423) 614-8598 or bmccoy@leeuniversity.edu.

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