The Nooga Belle Podcast

A podcast all about stories of the South, straight from the sources. Hosted by Kate Robertson, the Southern food & lifestyle blogger at Based in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Gabrielle Blades says a lot of her life is based on intuition. She moved to Chattanooga when she was 16, and from there she has flourished into a creative business owner and entrepreneur. We cover a lot of ground in our conversation: her creative and artistic background, how her business Blades Creative got started, why she loves being a creative entrepreneur, her creative process, "refilling the well" as a professional creative, and much more. 

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Gabby on Instagram @blades_creative and head to her website to see her work and get in touch.

When Natasha Ferrier started doing stand-up comedy five years ago, there was only one open-mic for comics in Chattanooga. Now there are seven open-mics and several monthly shows, one of which is Once a Month, Natasha's all-female comedy showcase at The Palace Theater.

In our epic conversation, Natasha shares how she got started in stand-up, her writing process, what inspires her material, how her career has evolved, what it's like being a woman in comedy, how she sees the comedy scene in Chattanooga evolving, and more. She also talks through how Once a Month comes together each month, from hosting solo to booking comedians and supporting local businesses like The Palace Theater.

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Natasha on Instagram @natashaferrier, and check out The Palace Theater for more info on upcoming shows.

Briana Garza-Wilson launched Chatt Taste to bring people together over good food and community. In the latest #BadassWomenInBiz episode, Briana and I talk about how Chatt Taste got started, how listening to her customers and the community changed her business, what it means to be an entrepreneur, balancing business, family, and self, and our favorite food spots in Chattanooga. 

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Chatt Taste on Facebook and Instagram @chatttaste, and head to the website to learn more and book your tour!

For International Women's Month, I'm celebrating female entrepreneurs in Chattanooga and everything they bring to our city. First up is Tiffany Malapanes, founder of Positiffitea, who we met on the podcast in January. (Listen to her first episode here.)

In this episode, Tiffany breaks down her journey of building her herbal tea business from the ground up: from R&D and making her own labels to conquering a devastating setback. We also chat about the amazing small business community in Chattanooga and all the resources available to aspiring entrepreneurs (shoutout Chattanooga Public Library, Startup Week/CoLab, Chattanooga Workspace, and INCubator!).

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Learn more about Tiffany's tea blends and the benefits of herbal tea on the Positiffitea website—and order some while you're there! Look for Tiffany at the Chattanooga Market when it starts again in April.

This episode was recorded in December 2019.

Author Audrey Keown first visited Chattanooga in 1999 as a high school student, fell in love, came back for college, and has been here ever since. Her debut novel Murder at Hotel 1911 comes out August 11, and it's set right here in the Scenic City.

In our conversation, Audrey and I talk about the beauty of telling stories, being a good storyteller, the process of researching and writing a mystery novel, the challenges of authorship, working with agents, and she gives a preview of Murder at Hotel 1911. We also discuss anxiety and mental health in creative professionals: what contributes to it, the importance of a support system, and ways to manage stress, anxiety, and mental health as a creative professional.

Audrey mentions tons of resources and inspirations that have helped her throughout her journey:

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Audrey on Instagram @audreykeownwrites, check out her website, find her book on goodreads, and preorder her novel on Amazon. 

Murder at Hotel 1911 by Audrey Keown comes out August 11, 2020.

When Tiffany Malapanes started making herbal, medicinal tea blends for herself and her friends, she had no idea it would turn into a business. She now runs Positiffitea and creates organic medicinal tea blends that are good and good for you. In this week's episode, Tiffany shares how her business got started, why she got into tea in the first place, and gives us a rundown on some of her most popular tea blends and their health properties. 

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Head to Tiffany's website to learn more and order some tea for yourself. You can contact Tiffany with any questions at and look for her at the Chattanooga Market on Sundays April - November!

Welcome back to the Nooga Belle Podcast! For the first episode of 2020, I'm joined by Arnold Ruelas: fitness instructor at Kyle House Fitness, manager at fab'rik Chattanooga, and self-care expert. He shares about his experiences as a fitness instructor and gives advice for those looking to start or further develop their fitness routines in the New Year. Lastly, we discuss the importance of self care and why you should always take time to rest, recharge, and listen to your body.

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Arnold on Instagram @arnoldaruelas for more fitness, fashion, self care, and general awesomeness.

On this edition of Pinkies Up, B*tches, Shelly, Mary, and I look back on our college days, while sipping vodka cranberries. We cover just about everything, including sports, classes, townie life, dorm life, campus food, tailgating, parties and other fun times, and wrap up with advice for freshmen and graduating seniors. 

If you've lived in Chattanooga for a day, you've no doubt heard rumors of haunted Room 311 in the historic Read House Hotel. In this special spooky episode, I sit down with Read House historian Tyler and guest services manager Jared to dig into the hotel's past: from its original construction in the 19th century, to the most recent renovation, completed in 2018. And of course, I am introduced to Annalisa Netherly, Room 311's guest that never left. 

Thanks so much for listening! Head to the website to learn more about The Read House and Room 311.

Larry Bradford started his entrepreneurial career more than 20 years ago in Atlanta. Several years ago, an "a-ha!" moment at a tailgate led him to create and launch Armor Shields: personalized, protective covers for Big Green Egg grills. 

In this week's episode, Larry walks me through the Armor Shields production process, why he started his company, the different customizations available, and what makes Armor Shields an essential part of your grilling process. We also talk about barbecue and reminisce on our time as judges for Ruby Falls' Battle Below the Clouds BBQ competition earlier this spring. 

Thanks so much for listening, y'all! Follow Armor Shields on Facebook and Instagram @armorshields for news and updates. Shop the collection on their website.

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