Tbows Tavern is East Tennessees new hot spot

Traditionally one might expect crystal for a 15 year anniversary celebration, but Tina Farner and Jennifer Bowman might be anything but traditional.
Instead, they look forward to celebrating their 15 year anniversary with another celebration; a year of business under their belt operating Cleveland, Tenn.’s only gay bar, Tbow’s Tavern.

Cleveland is located in the southeastern part of the state outside of Chattanooga. While people come mostly from Chattanooga and Cleveland, Farner and Bowman have seen an influx of people north that previously had to drive to either Knoxville or Chattanooga just to have a place to go.

Converting a former biker bar, Farner and Bowman faced monumental changes both personally and professionally prior to opening. In addition to the clientele change, immediately prior to closing on the property, Farner was diagnosed with breast cancer.

“If the diagnosis had come a week earlier, we wouldn’t have gone through with it,” Farner said. “We both know that this was meant to be.”
What was meant to be was a community outpour of love.

The building was in need of some major repair and while Farner and Bowman dealt with personal obstacles, friends banded together musketeer-style contributing to the community at large.

Many hands went into the cleaning, painting and roof work it took to open T’bow’s, but these hands were strong. “Our friends need to be a part of our story,” Farner said. “We really are a great big family that keeps on growing.”

Part of that growth may be Farner and Bowman’s feverish work to bring the best in drag entertainment to Tbow’s. “We’ve had all kinds of people [straight and gay] come to enjoy the drag shows,” Farner boasted. Yes, even some of those bikers who frequented the bar before.

So don’t worry about acceptance in Farner and Bowman’s bar. “We welcome anyone and everyone,” Farner said. “But if you’re not gay or gay-friendly this might not be the place for you.”

T’bow’s performers have included Brandi Taylor Andrews from Huntsville, Ala. and Tbow’s very own Miss Gay Tennessee 2012 Tyana Montice. Additionally this month, Tbow’s is excited to bring “The Bitch of the South” Mr. Charlie Brown from Atlanta, Ga. to its bar on Saturday, Aug. 25.

But drag is not all Tbow’s has to offer. If you love to sing in your shower or while driving the back roads of Tennessee, check out Tbow’s karaoke. Karaoke combined with great weekly happy hour food and drink specials ensure that everyone who picks up a microphone is an “American Idol” or at least feels like one.
For more information, visit Tbow’s Tavern on their Facebook page.

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