Press Releases


John Scopes to be major focus at 2016 Scopes Festival

28th Annual Scopes Festival to take closer look at John Scopes John Scopes was almost the forgotten player in his famous trial in 1925, but he will be a major focus of the 28th annual Scopes Festival July 15-17. Scopes was overshadowed by the famous attorneys who argued the case – William Jennings Bryan and Clarence Darrow – but two of his grand-nieces are expected to attend the festival to meet guests and answer questions about their famous relative. In addition, two authors of books about the trial will be on hand. Nancy Rose and Lisa Rennegarbe, of ...

Randy Waller to headline Scopes Festival Music

Randy Waller, headliner for the musical offerings of the 28th annual Scopes Festival, understands the importance of history and heritage; he lives it every performance. Randy, son of Charlie Waller, one of the original Country Gentlemen bluegrass band, will present a free concert on the Rhea County Courthouse lawn beginning at 12:30 p.m. Saturday, July 16. Drawing on his father’s legacy touched by his own creative flair, Randy will perform bluegrass standards as well as his own tunes. “The Country Gentlemen were one of the top bluegrass groups in the 1950s and ...

Scopes Scavenger Hunt: Can You Find It?

DAYTON, Tenn. – Can you find it? Back for its second year, the Spring City Leo Club, youth branch of the Spring City Lions Club, will sponsor the Scopes Scavenger Hunt, challenging participants to figure out “what happened here” at a number of places related to the 1925 Scopes trial. LEO Club members invite teams of four each to sign up for the hunt at the Rhea County Courthouse beginning Saturday, July 16, at 9:30 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to each team member for the top three teams. Beginning at the courthouse, each team will be given clues to guide them ...

“Front Page News” preview May 7

Members of the cast of Front Page News, the play with music about the Scopes Trial, will perform during Dayton’s Strawberry Festival on Saturday, May 7 in Centennial Park adjoining the courthouse. At 3:30 p.m., following the parade, the cast will perform several songs and some dialogue from William Jennings Bryan (played by George Miller) and Clarence Darrow (played by Rick Dye). Director Jim Crabtree, consulting producer with the Cumberland County Playhouse, said the performance will give festival-goers a preview of the Scopes Trial drama that will be presented in ...