With over 125 years of history, the Blue Bank Resort on Reelfoot Lake in Hornbeak, Tennessee is filled with tradition. Not only does the resort offer numerous fishing and hunting experiences, they also provide guests opportunities to simply slow down and enjoy the outdoors in one of their numerous lakeside lodging options, at the marina, on the grounds, or at the highly recommended Fishhouse Restaurant. The Blue Bank Resort is an active supporter of our Northwest Tennessee regional food system. However, the resort’s commitment to local food doesn’t stop with their long-term facilitation of fishing and hunting. It is further demonstrated by the resort’s procurement of local foods and their onsite garden.
In addition to a variety of family style food choices ranging from steak to seafood, the Fishhouse Restaurant frequently features locally sourced produce throughout the menu. Bre Roser, the Marketing and Events Director at the Blue Bank Resort said the resort obtains “peak season produce from local farmers’ markets once a week”. For example, the resort serves tomatoes from the Dyersburg farmers’ market and corn from the Obion County farmers’ market. The resort also sources the wine sold throughout the resort from the White Squirrel Winery in Trenton, Tennessee and Century Farm Winery in Jackson, Tennessee.
Food grown in their onsite garden is also included in the Fishhouse Restaurant’s menu, but this isn’t the only place guests can access these very locally grown foods. The Blue Bank Resort frequently places these items around the resort for visitors to enjoy for free! A few of the resort’s favorites are their blackberries and apples.
The resort hopes providing these locally grown items to guests not only encourages guests to visit their garden, but also to learn more about gardening and where their food comes from. For instance, their beautiful butterfly garden is a joy to see and it draws attention to essential components of our food system like pollinators.
The Blue Bank Resort offers numerous attractions, events, and specials all year long. On top of fishing and hunting, there are experiences like walking through a garden full of monarch butterflies, watching the fascinating migration of birds, exploring the uniqueness of Reelfoot Lake or even just relaxing in nature. Depending on the time of year, you may run into a pelican, an eagle, or even Santa Claus at the Winter Wonderland. No matter the reason for the visit, time spent at Blue Bank Resort not only supports a local business and an active participant in our local food system, it also contributes to sustaining healthy communities and tourism in the North West Tennessee region.
Written by Amber Graves
Research and Evaluation Intern, LFN