What’s Your Favorite Family Movie?

As much as I love Chattanooga, winters here are wet, bleak, and dreary so staying inside and watching movies is a favorite January

Beautiful but bleak.

Beautiful but bleak.

activity. Originally, this post was going to be a review of recent family movies. A friend said, “Frozen may be the best Disney movie ever,” and I thought a quick look at some recent movies that parents and children might enjoy together could be useful for Chattanooga area families. Then, I realized it has been years since I’ve watched a family movie so I’m not really in a position to write any current reviews.

But there are some timeless classics that everyone — children, parents, single people, couples — should see. For me, The Princess Bride tops the list. It has everything from villains to heroes, and Andre the Giant is in it. There is also a valuable vocabulary lesson!

Another for slightly older children is Holes. If you are a family that reads together, you may want to read the book first, but the movie is great too.

If anyone in your family has missed The Sandlot, get to a Redbox, or pull it up on Netflix or OnDemand as soon as possible. Cancel your weekend plans. Make some popcorn and laugh together. It will make you yearn for neighborhood baseball games and childhood friendships.

Once I started thinking about my favorite family movies, I wondered what films hold a special place for others, and put the question

Grab a bowl of popcorn and enjoy a cozy movie night!

Grab a bowl of popcorn and enjoy a cozy movie night!

on Facebook. The Neverending Story was mentioned several times, as was The Black Stallion and The Fox and the Hound. The Wizard of Oz, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Wreck It Ralph, and The Nightmare Before Christmas all came up as well. One classic film fan even brought up the 1933 version of Alice in Wonderland  with Gary Cooper.

There are plenty more family movies that parents enjoy as much as (sometimes more than) their children do. Tell us your favorites in the comments!


About the Author: Dava Stewart is a resident of Signal Mountain, freelance writer, mom to two adults, avid reader, and a fan of kids’ movies. You can contact her at dava@smilingtreewriting.com.


7 Best Places to Take Guests Visiting Nooga

Whether your in-laws are visiting, or friends from college, if you have guests coming to visit, you want to show them a good time. What you do will depend on lots of factors, like your guests’ activity levels, interests, whether children will be involved, and even the season of the year. Here are our top 7 picks, where there is something for everybody:

1. Enjoy a “tourist” day – There are a few big landmarks that everyone who visits Chattanooga should check out. Some of them, like Rock City, have been advertised on barns for so long that anyone who has driven on the interstate is curious. Others, like the Incline Railroad, are unusual and fun. Make sure to hit these major sites:

2.Tour downtown – From the Northshore to the Southside, downtown Chattanooga has a lot to see! If the thought of walking from one end of town to the other is a bit daunting, use the electric shuttles. Highlights to be sure

Walnut Street Bridge and Hunter Museum

Just one of the many beautiful sights to see in Nooga!

and see:

  • The Northshore for some cool little shops, and don’t forget to check out the dance steps embedded in the sidewalk.
  • The Renaissance Arts District, to take in the sculpture garden, and to smell the wonderful aroma of roasting coffee at Rembrandt’s.
  • The Southside, for all of the funky art galleries and the awesome public sculpture on display.
  • The central section of downtown, where you can stroll around on the Aquarium Plaza, walk across the Walnut Street Bridge, and take a rest in Miller Plaza.

3. Spend a day at the park – or visit several parks. Chattanooga has a bunch of excellent parks and greenspaces where you can play, picnic, and generally enjoy life. Read this post to learn where our favorite parks are, and why they are our favorites.

4. Get out in the wilderness – Whether you like to kayak, mountain climb, trail ride, hike, hang glide, swim, or stroll at a leisurely pace, there are plenty of outdoor activities in Chattanooga. From the Ocoee to the Tennessee River, there are opportunities to have fun on the water, and from Shell Mound Park to the Cherokee National Forest, this area has abundant camping spots.

5. Take in a show –  As with the parks and outdoor activities, when it comes to entertainment, there’s something for everyone in Chattanooga. Hamilton Place, Northgate, and downtown, and East Ridge all have good movie theaters, showing the latest and greatest films. If you are in the mood for something a little bigger, the IMAX theater downtown is the place to go. For live entertainment, check out:

6. Enjoy a sporting event – Baseball, soccer, football, and basketball teams play in Chattanooga, so there is almost always some game to go to. Finley Stadium, on the Southside, AT&T Field downtown, and Mckinzie Arena at UTC are all modern, comfortable venues where you can enjoy some popcorn and hot dog while you cheer for your team.

7. Do some shopping – In every neighborhood and section of Chattanooga, there are unique, interesting shops. Gifts, clothing, doggie accessories, antiques, and so much more can be found in St. Elmo, in Hixson, on Cherry Street, in Brainerd, at the malls. From art galleries to department stores, Chattanooga is a shopper’s delight.

Bonus: Be sure to go out to eat! Alleia, Public House, St. Johns, the Southern Star, the Fork and Pie, 212 Market, and Niko’s are just a few of the fantastic eateries downtown. There are several local food trucks where you can get great grub on the go. Chattanooga isn’t exactly a food mecca (yet) but we are well on our way!