Hank Snow’s Rain­bow Ranch a spe­cial place to stay in Nashville

South Shore Breaker - - Front Page - BLAIN HEN­SHAW

As a song­writer, I’ve been to Nashville twice. Both times, I’ve stayed at con­ven­tional ho­tels. Next time, I’ll stay at Hank

Snow’s Rain­bow Ranch: The house and prop­erty where the Nova Sco­tia-born Grand Ole Opry star made his home from 1950 un­til his death in 1999. Thanks to the ef­forts of one of Hank’s rel­a­tives, the ranch is now avail­able on a rental ba­sis to tourists and vis­i­tors.

You can book the ranch for a few days, a week or two, or even a month or more. You can even sit at the pi­ano where Elvis Pres­ley played and sang so many times when he vis­ited his friend and men­tor Hank Snow. Elvis and Hank’s son ( Jimmy Rodgers

Snow) were close friends. In the early days, both were part of the Hank Snow tour­ing show.

Calvin Blakney grew up in Heb­bville near Bridge­wa­ter be­fore mov­ing to Ed­mon­ton, Alta, where he owns a suc­cess­ful weld­ing busi­ness. Hank Snow was his great un­cle.

“Hank was my grandma’s big brother. The first time I went to Nashville, I didn’t even know my cousin Jimmy Snow, but we looked him up and he didn’t men­tion any­thing about the house (Rain­bow Ranch) so I just as­sumed that he didn’t own it any more.”

Blakney cred­its his daugh­ter with alert­ing him that Rain­bow Ranch was for sale.

“She found an ar­ti­cle about it on­line in the Nashville Ten­nessean news­pa­per. Mother May­belle’s house (Carter fam­ily) and Hank Snow’s house were fea­tured in the ar­ti­cle as prop­er­ties that were go­ing up for sale. When we saw that, we won­dered: ‘How much money are we talk­ing about to buy Hank Snow’s home?’ So, I got in touch with Jimmy Snow, we went down and ended up buy­ing

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Since tak­ing own­er­ship in 2015, Blakney and his wife Sandy have been lov­ingly restor­ing Rain­bow Ranch to the con­di­tion it was in when Hank and his wife Min­nie lived there. The ranch of­fers a unique va­ca­tion ex­pe­ri­ence, es­pe­cially for coun­try mu­sic fans.

“We rent it out for peo­ple to stay there,” said Blakney. “There’s a min­i­mum rental of four days

and you get the whole house to your­self. There are four bed­rooms, three queen-size beds and two twins and you also get the kitchen. So you get the run of the whole house ex­cept for the record­ing stu­dio and the of­fice.”

Many who stay at the ranch are Hank’s fans.

“Some are not but they are when they leave!” he said. “Be­cause we have a lot of his records on dis­play, there’s a lot of his­tory

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