News And Notes
Jan 30

Carrie Underwood Stays At No. 1 on Top 20

Nan Kelley Cohosts Top 20 Countdown with Barry Williams
Host Nan Kelley was joined by a special cohost for this week’s episode of Top 20 Country Countdown. Former child star Barry Williams helped her count down this week’s chart while discussing his new show, A Very Barry Branson. Premiering Thursday, February 5 at 9/8c on Great American Country, this new weekly series features Williams, perhaps best known as “Greg” from The Brady Bunch, as he launches a 1970s musical variety show in Branson, Missouri.

Tune in: A Very Barry Branson »

On the countdown, Carrie Underwood kept her No. 1 streak alive with “Something In The Water, followed by Tim McGraw and Chris Young. Kenny Chesney made his countdown debut with “Til It’s Gone,” and Florida Georgia Line’s “Sun Daze” returned to the chart.

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Jan 30

One Pan Nan: Blue Cheese Tomato Soup

Nan Kelley's Homemade Tomato Soup Recipe

Photo courtesy of Nan Kelley.

It is still very cold in certain parts of the country — I’m in Boston right now with 30 inches of snow on the ground and more coming down at this minute! My favorite cold weather lunch that takes away the chill every time is tomato soup with a grilled cheese sandwich. Here’s an easy homemade tomato soup recipe that just might have you taking a break from the canned, condensed soup that we all love.

I found this recipe in a magazine about 10 years ago, tore it out and tucked it away with intentions of making it one day.  I finally made it, with a couple of tweaks, and I’m wishing I had done it years ago. This is restaurant quality and features tangy blue cheese and rich half-and-half, with a little red wine for added depth.  As a matter of fact, the original version IS from a restaurant in Wilmington, North Carolina — Front Street Brewery.
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Jan 29

6 MVP-Worthy Super Bowl Party Recipes

Krystal Keith

Photo courtesy of Krystal Keith.

Millions of people across the country will have their televisions tuned to the NFL Super Bowl on Sunday night to cheer on the New England Patriots or the Seattle Seahawks, to watch the commercials or to see Katy Perry’s sure to be over-the-top halftime performance.

One of the best parts of watching the Super Bowl is the party food and drink. Here are six recipes that will help you be the food MVP of Super Bowl Sunday.

Mini Corn Dogs. As the pre-game crowd starts to gather, set out a few appetizers to tide them over to kickoff. LBT‘s Kimberly Schlapman’s Mini Corn Dogs with Cilantro Dip recipe yields 20 crowd-pleasing dogs-on-a-stick.

Top 5 Country Songs About Football »

Guacamole. Chips and dips are a sports party staple so put Krystal Keith’s Guacamole from Cabo San Lucas alongside the salsa and spinach dip. With salt, pepper and only three other ingredients, this guacamole is quick and easy to make.

Zac Brown’s Chili. Campfire Filet Tip Chili from Zac Brown and friends calls for beef tenderloin, pork and bison, making it the perfect chili for the meat lovers in the group. Serve it with cornbread or corn chips, and top it off with sour cream and cheese, just in time for kickoff.
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Jan 28

Krystal Keith in the Kitchen: Roasted Vegetable Trio

Krystal Keith in the Kitchen: Roasted Vegetable Trio Recipe

Photo courtesy of Krystal Keith.

I’m always trying to create side dishes that have a unique twist on a boring old favorite and this is one of my go-to creations. It is colorful, flavorful, tangy, tasty, and it’s just plain pretty to look at. For you health nuts, it hits the spetrum of veggies you need for a “balanced” meal, too. You have your super-greens, your nutrient-rich butternut squash and just the right amount of starchy potatoes. Tonight, skip the dull one-veggie-at-a-time side dish tradition, whip up some roasted chicken or pan-seared fish, and load up on this triple threat of a side dish that will blow your dinner guests away.

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Jan 27

A Very Barry Branson Premieres Feb. 5

A Very Barry Branson Premieres February 5

Barry Williams on stage in Branson.

Hollywood heads to Missouri in Great American Country’s newest original series, A Very Barry Branson. Premiering Thursday, February 5 at 9/8c, the series features television’s most reliable big brother, Barry Williams (“Greg” from The Brady Bunch), as he launches a 1970s musical variety show in Branson, Missouri.

In A Very Barry Branson, Barry learns that to create a successful and fun live music show that harkens back to the era of The Brady Bunch, bright-colored leisure suits, roller skating and vinyl records, this Hollywood fixture has to do more than just show up and sing – he has to become a bona fide Bransonite.

Eager to win over the tight-knit community, Barry befriends Branson’s popular music group The Haygoods, who soon have the television icon cliff jumping at the lake, jet-packing from the balcony of the theater, and learning to trout fish – a task that proves just what a fish out of water this city boy is.

From performing at timeshare mixers to auditioning a slew of local performers, including a break-dancing granny and a man who plays a bike pump, Barry pulls out all the stops – even arranging a long-awaited reunion with his Brady Bunch sister, Maureen McCormick, whom he takes on a Branson tour.

“It’s a blast to the past revisiting the 1970s through all of its great music, which is what we do in my Branson stage show,” said Barry. “What’s great about A Very Barry Branson is that it explores all the beauty of the Ozarks, while discovering and embracing a new lifestyle and creating the ’70s Music Celebration! – a fun, nostalgic ride through the grooviest decade. Great American Country viewers get to join the adventure.”

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Jan 26

Glamping at Paws Up Is All About the Butlers

The Resort at Paws Up Luxury Tent

Photo courtesy of Paws Up.

Roughing it on a family camping trip may not be for everyone, but a “glamping” trip to The Resort at Paws Up in Greenough, Montana, may just change the mind of even the most resistant camper. At Paws Up, it isn’t just about the basic camping needs of water, fire and shelter, it’s about the butlers. That’s right – butlers.

Watch: Tour The Resort at Paws Up »

At Paws Up, campers have butlers at their beck and call to pour wine, deliver dinner, prep the fire and even lay out the s’mores. Opened in 2005 on 30,000 acres in scenic Montana, Paws Up incorporates all the elements of “real” camping, but turns up the luxury element to unparalleled levels.

Your Guide To Glamping »

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Jan 25

HGTV Dream Home 2015 Sweepstakes

Enter the HGTV Dream Home 2015 Sweepstakes

Enter the HGTV Dream Home 2015 Sweepstakes for your chance to win a Grand Prize valued at over $2 million, including a Cape Cod-style home located on Martha’s Vineyard, luxurious furnishings from Ethan Allen, a 2015 GMC® Acadia Denali and $250,000 cash prize. Enter daily through February 17.

This year’s  HGTV Dream Home offers an elegant twist on the traditional, coastal vacation house. Take a video tour of the indoor spaces and get room details and photos below.
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Jan 23

Carrie Underwood Keeps No. 1 Streak Alive on Top 20

Carrie Underwood

Carrie Underwood remained at No. 1with “Something In The Water” on this week’s Top 20 Country Countdown. Tim McGraw and Blake Shelton with Ashley Monroe rounded out the Top 3. Katie Armiger had the lone countdown debut this week, coming in at No. 19 with her latest, “One Night Between Friends.”

Top 20 Photo Gallery »

Want to re-watch some of your favorite interviews? Get Top 20 online extrasincluding videos and photos. You can also cast your votes and take a look at the current chart to see where your favorite videos land.

This Week’s Chart

  1. Carrie Underwood – “Something In the Water”
  2. Tim McGraw – “Shotgun Rider”
  3. Blake Shelton w/Ashley Monroe – “Lonely Tonight”
  4. Chris Young – “Lonely Eyes”
  5. Josh Turner – “Lay Low”
  6. The Band Perry – “Gentle on My Mind”
  7. Sara Evans – “Put My Heart Down”
  8. Brad Paisley – “Perfect Storm”
  9. Blake Shelton – “Neon Light”
  10. Jake Owen – “What We Ain’t Got” Continue Reading

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Jan 23

8 Family-Friendly Spring Break Destinations

It may be winter, but Spring Break is right around the corner.

While this unofficial “holiday” is usually celebrated in mid-March for southern states and colleges, it falls closer to Easter in the North and Midwest. Either way, as college kids flock to Florida beaches, there are plenty of other destinations for the family-friendly crowd.

U.S. Space and Rocket Center in Huntsville, Alabama

U.S. Space and Rocket Center – Alabama
Head to Huntsville for an out-of-this-world experience. Home to the Apollo 16 Command Module, Pathfinder, and a National Historic Landmark Saturn V Moon Rocket, the center has accommodated nearly 16 million visitors since it opened in 1971.

The Grand Canyon – Arizona
Although it’s not the largest canyon in the world, the Grand Canyon is more than a mile deep and two miles long, with spectacular scenery and a variety of activities. Hiking and mule trails, rafting trips and helicopter rides, informative visitor centers and ranger programs make this National Park a prime vacation spot for families.

Great American Camping »

The Mark Twain House & Museum – Connecticut
Located in Hartford and home to author Samuel Clemens from 1874 to 1891, this was where the author composed some of his most famous works, including The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and The Prince and The Pauper. Tour the house and visit the museum for insight on Twain and his fascinating career.

Sun Valley – Idaho
At first glance, Idaho may not seem like the ultimate Spring Break destination, but the resort city of Sun Valley offers year-round outdoor recreation like cross-country skiing, ice skating, snowmobiling, golfing, mountain biking, river rafting and hiking. The city is also host to special events and festivals throughout the year.

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Jan 22

Celebrate Off the Map Finale with Recipes from the Show

Shannen and Holly Toast Off the Map Finale at The Red Bar

We’re excited and sad that this Friday is the finale of Off the Map With Shannen &  Holly. This week’s episode is the best adventure yet, as the ladies head to Florida for whale sharks and a high-stakes poker game.

They also learn how to make Key lime pie at the famous Red Bar, recipes below. “Customers love them. When you’re in Florida you have to have Key lime pie,” says chef Calvin Bradley. Make these treats for your own Off the Map viewing party or share with your BFF.

And don’t forget, we’ll still be hosting a LIVE  Tweets on-air event with Shannen and Holly for the finale Friday night at 10/9c. Use #ShannenandHolly and your Tweet could be on TV.

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