Review of American Countess Cruise: Ali Center Showcases History of Boxing Legend

“Maybe I was great in the ring, but outside of boxing, I’m just a brother like other people. I want to live a good life, serve God, help everybody I can. And one more thing. I’m still gonna find out who stole my bike when I was 12 years old in Louisville and I’m gonna whup him. That was a good bike.”    Muhammad Ali If not for a stolen Schwinn bicycle, Muhammad Ali might not have …

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Review of American Countess Cruise: Pre-Cruise Visit to Louisville

We’ve only been in Louisville for two hours and already we’re sitting at a bourbon bar. Actually, we’re taking a lesson at the Frazier History Museum. We’re learning how to make an Old Fashioned bourbon drink in one of the museum’s cocktail classes. Frazier Museum tour guide Madison has the ingredients neatly lined up and is sharing the history of the popular beverage. Making an Old Fashioned at Frazier History Museum. It’s appropriate that we’ve begun our …

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Special Events for 50th Anniversary of Picasso’s Death in Beautiful Cruise Port of Málaga, Spain

The newborn was so small and lifeless that the attending nurse thought he must be stillborn. Placing the baby on a kitchen table, the nurse turned her attention to the mother after the difficult delivery. But the baby’s uncle thought there might still be a chance. Taking a puff on his cigar, the uncle breathed warm smoke into the child’s lungs. The result was immediate. The baby that had been feared dead began breathing and moving. That …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Final Thoughts on Solo Cruise

Stepping off the American Serenade and walking up the Nashville riverfront hill to the waiting American Cruise Lines motorcoach, a woman asked me if I would recommend cruising. An older single lady, she saw me walking alone and wondered if I had taken the cruise by myself. Sure did. Her first name was Carolyn and she lived in Nashville. She had seen the ship docked there for two days and had even checked out American Cruise Lines …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Last Cruise Night at Grand Ole Opry

In the center stage of the Grand Ole Opry is a special piece of wood. It is from the old Ryman Auditorium. Can you imagine what it has seen? If it could talk, think about all the legends it could tell about. Over the years, thousands of performers have stood on this circle – Hank Williams, Jim Reeve, Patsy Cline, Porter Wagoner, Dolly Parton, Loretta Lynn, Garth Brooks, Johnny Cash, June Carter Cash, Little Jimmy Dickens. Even …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Reformed Riverboat Captain Builds ‘Mother Church of Country Music’

In the late 1800s, riverboat captain Thomas Ryman decided to go downtown and heckle a preacher at a Nashville revival. Instead, Ryman got converted. As part of his newfound faith, Ryman vowed to build a beautiful tabernacle for the minister, the Rev. Samuel Jones, that he had set out to torment. The result is one of Nashville’s most popular landmarks, the old Ryman Auditorium. A statue of Little Jimmy Dickens (1920-2015) stands outside the Ryman where he first performed in …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Patsy Cline Museum Has Surprise Memorabilia

Patsy Cline saved the memories of her life. That memorabilia, after being locked away for more than half a century, can now be seen at the Patsy Cline Museum in Nashville, Tennessee. “Patsy Cline was very sentimental,” says museum founder Bill Miller. “I think people will be really surprised at what we have in the museum.” When the American Serenade docked in Nashville for two nights at the end of our cruise, I easily walked to the …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Johnny Cash Museum Honors ‘Man in Black’

When Bill Miller was 13 years old, he went to a Johnny Cash concert that changed the course of his life. “Johnny Cash played a harmonica and tossed it into the audience when he was done,” Bill says. “I caught it.” That was just the beginning. Over the years, Bill collected a treasure trove of Johnny Cash memorabilia and became friends with the legendary entertainer. “I honestly can’t tell you how many pieces I have. It’s in …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Bounty of Delicious Food Aboard New Ship

My first meal on the new American Serenade gave a hint of the delicious cuisine we would be enjoying on our weeklong Music Cities Cruise. After checking out of The Guest House at Graceland where passengers had stayed the night before the cruise, we took a morning motorcoach ride around Memphis. We arrived at our ship just in time for lunch. The dining room on the Main Deck aft is large with plenty of room for even …

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Review of American Serenade Cruise: Eye-Catching New Ship on America’s Waterways

Cameras seemed to be aimed at the American Serenade no matter where we were cruising. No wonder. Not only is the ship a sleek beauty, she also has a fascinating bow that opens like some mythical creature’s jaws. Then a retractable gangway can be extended from the bow for passengers to comfortably walk on or off the ship.  “I’ve never seen anything like it,” says Tom Carson, viewing the American Serenade hugging the shore in Clarksville, Tennessee. …

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