Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - 17

COUNTRY ROADS

Rock City Birdhouse?
The freshened billboard is along I-24 at South Pittsburg, Tennessee.

R

ock City is repainting more than the classic "See Rock
City" barns that have advertised the Lookout Mountain attraction in Georgia so famously since the mid-20th
century. This past summer, a birdhouse billboard-visible
from I-24-was repainted at South Pittsburg, Tennessee.

"It is a sign that looks like a birdhouse," says Bill
Chapin, chairman and CEO of See Rock City, Inc.
Rock City's founder, Garnet Carter, hired a self-taught
painter, Clark Byers, in the 1930s to paint the phrase "See
Rock City" on barn rooftops across the country. Two decades and over 900 barns later, Byers began building birdhouses that were miniature "See Rock City" barns. Thousands of birdhouses have since been sold. And some have
been displayed at the Smithsonian Institution's National
Museum of American History.
Made to look like a three-dimensional structure, the
repainted birdhouse sign on I-24, standing 65 feet high
and 25 feet wide, has been leased by See Rock City, Inc.,
since 1972.
"When you see this birdhouse a half a
mile away, it looks like it's out in the forest taking care of giant birds," says Chapin,
The birdhouse billboard is
65. "It's so far away that it looks like a bird- 65 feet high and 25 feet
house. It really does not look like a sign."
wide.
seerockcity.com
-JOE TENNIS

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JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2020

17


http://www.seerockcity.com http://www.visitlondonky.com http://www.visitlondonky.com

Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020

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Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - Intro
Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - 3
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Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country - January/February 2020 - Cover4
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