A Look Back at the Inaugural Bellevue Picnic

We recently had the opportunity to sit down with D.E. Ryan and discuss the early days of the Bellevue Picnic. Mr. Ryan, broker at Century 21 West Meade Realtors, and sales manager, Rob Stogdill, organized the very first picnic as a way to promote their business, along with getting other local businesses involved in the community. After three months of planning, the inaugural Bellevue Picnic was held on July 30th, 1978.

In the early years, the event was called Bellevue “Old Fashioned” Picnic. An estimated 600 people attended the first picnic on the grounds that later became known as Red Caboose Park. Century 21 provided free watermelon, sandwiches, and drinks to all that attended. Games, musical performances, and a karate demonstration were all part of the entertainment of the day.

Below are some photos from Mr. Ryan’s scrapbook that he clipped from the now defunct Bellevue newspaper, the Westview (Photos and Caption Credit: Westview).

Rob Stogdill (left), sales manager with Century 21, West Meade Realtors, and D.E. Ryan, broker
Billy Walker of Bellevue Plumbing samples the watermelon.
3 year old Eileen Cullen
Eric Botts of Bellevue, the second 8 year old American to become a black belt
C.B. McClinton, Bellevue resident, who has appeared as a Grand Ole Opry guest performer.
State Sen. Bill Boner, a candidate for the U.S. House of Representatives from the Fifth District (and future Nashville Mayor), campaigns at the Bellevue picnic along with Metro Councilman Leon Reuben.

The 42nd Annual Bellevue Community Picnic will be held on May 18th, behind Bellevue Middle School. Please make plans to attend and enjoy some ice cold watermelon!

For additional details or to participate as a vendor, follow the link below.

www.bellevueharpethchamber.com