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Fair Game - Glamping in Morrison
Philip Fairbanks.png
Philip Fairbanks

I’m not a fan of the word “glamping” but the couple of times I’ve engaged in the practice, I must admit I really enjoyed myself. Most recently I was visiting Sassy Springs Retreat in Morrison. A friend of mine from Ohio was planning to come down to visit and it was available on Airbnb. Since returning to Warren County I’d heard from several people about attempts to put McMinnville on the map as far as tourism. At first, I didn’t quite get it, but despite seeing some incredibly beautiful areas in my time living on the West Coast and the Philippines, I’m still amazed every time I see the view from the fountain downtown as you peer down toward the mountains. 

My last “glamping” experience was in a fairly exotic locale. I stayed with a friend in Oriental Mindoro, considered to be one of the most beautiful tropical paradises you could ever want to visit. This was just a tent on the beach with some thick, comfortable mattresses and some sheets and a blanket, but the real draw obviously is the natural beauty all around. Seeing Sassy Springs at sunset and sunrise, though, made it so clear why people would come from all over to take in some of the beauty that perhaps we locals occasionally take for granted. 

The “Sky View” RV we stayed in was quite a bit fancier than the sparse tent on the sand I stayed at in Oriental Mindoro, but when you go on a trip like that it’s not the Wi-Fi connection or the linens that you’re there for anyway. It’s still a bit cold in the mornings and at night in this early spring, but that was one of the most comfortable beds and comforters it’s been my pleasure to nod off on in a long while. 

I’ve been lucky enough to do some traveling and see some incredibly beautiful sights. An Amtrak trip from Southern California up to Portland to attend a ceramics conference with an artist friend is one of the most breathtaking journeys I’ve ever undertaken. Especially once you make your way into the Pacific Northwest the never ending vista of mountains and pines is breathtaking. I also hiked up into the remote village of Buscalan in the mountains of northern Luzon a few years ago and got to see the rice terraces of Banaue. 

As exciting and beautiful as all these far-off travel spots are though, it really hit me as I stood there amidst the trees how and why Warren County could really become a hotspot for Instagram-minded Airbnb patrons. It’s easy to take all that beauty for granted when you see it every day, but our stretch of Cumberland Appalachia is truly a little slice of heaven. McMinnville tourism sounded silly to me when I first got back, but when it comes down to it, while there may not be as much to do in the area as in some larger cities, that doesn’t mean there’s not plenty to see. 

Standard reporter Philip Fairbanks can be reached at (931) 473-2191.