Thursday, August 27, 2015

Finding Scandinavian trolls in the Smoky Mountains

There are most definitely trolls lurking in the Smoky Mountains and you’ll find a wide variety of them at 5 Arts Studio in Cosby, Tennessee.
Denmark natives Ken (Knud) Arensbak and his wife, Neta (Agnete) Arensbak immigrated to the U.S. in 1949 and brought with them the legends of Scandinavian trolls, secretive little creatives who live in woods and caves and the deep recesses of homes. When they told their children these tales, the kids wanted to know what they looked like. So Ken brought a few to life, utilizing nature’s materials — acorns, nuts, pinecones, rope fibers.
Pretty soon others wanted their trolls too, so Ken created more and handed them off with little troll stories. Then stores wanted to sell them.
            The rest is troll history. Family members carry on the thriving troll tradition at 5 Arts Studio on Troll Mountain Way in Cosby, about 15 miles east of Gatlinburg, and a visit to the “troll factory studio” is as much an adventure as bringing home your very own troll. There are trolls everywhere, many displayed in their native habitats, plus artwork created by Ken lining the walls. Out the back are stunning views of the Smokies. And to this day, each troll is lovingly made by hand.
            Want to see what’s new in Trollville? Check out their web site.

Cheré Dastugue Coen is an international travel writer and the author of “Forest Hill, Louisiana: A Bloom Town History,” “Haunted Lafayette, Louisiana” and “Exploring Cajun Country: A Historic Guide to Acadiana” and co-author of “Magic’s in the Bag: Creating Spellbinding Gris Gris Bags and Sachets.” She also writes Louisiana romances under the pen name of Cherie Claire, “A Cajun Dream” and “The Letter.” Write her at

No comments:

Post a Comment