Celebrate King; say yes to a meeting or two

Carol EvansOur Town Outdoors

Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. was known for marches, not races, but as MLK Day approaches, it’s a good time for the YWCA’s 25th Annual Diversity Day and Race Against Racism.

Activities get underway at 10 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 18, at the YWCA’s Phyllis Wheatley Center. In addition to the certified 5K, there’s also a one-mile walk that goes to the Alex Haley statue at Morningside Park. Each offers a great opportunity to ponder the life and legacy of Dr. King.

Show of hands: Who thinks they have too many meetings in their life? Well, sometimes there’s a good reason to get excited about them. The featured speaker at Monday night’s Smoky Mountain Wheelmen monthly meeting is Kent Bostick, Knoxville’s own cycling legend.

Bostick has been on the U.S. Olympic Cycling Team, a Pan American Games gold medalist, a USCF Master’s Rider of the Year for several years, a Master’s National Champion and Master’s World Champion, and he’s still racing.

At 6 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month, REI Knoxville hosts Opt to Act: Conversations with Keep Knoxville Beautiful. Each session focuses on a different topic; this month’s is Recycling 101. Start the new year right by learning about the recycling programs available in Knox County.

Big shout out to our friends at Knoxville-Knox County Planning for earning a Bronze Bicycle Friendly Business Award from the League of American Bicyclists. Planning joins 153 new and renewing business, government agencies and Fortune 500 companies in all 50 states and Washington, D.C., in a commitment to transform American workplaces to be more welcoming to customers and employees who bike.

Planning encourages bicycling as an easy option for transportation and provides amenities such as an agency bike for nearby meetings and incentives such as Smart Trips Commuter Rewards. Cycling can save employees money, give them a workout without the gym and help them avoid traffic jams. It can also increase their happiness level and decrease their stress and anxiety, according to Savannah Robertson, Smart Trips program coordinator.

Bicycling is better for the environment and helps all of us breathe cleaner air.

Congratulations and thanks, Knoxville-Knox County Planning!

To help you “plan” your enjoyment of East Tennessee’s beautiful environment, check out the Outdoor Knoxville calendar.

Carol Evans is executive director of Legacy Parks Foundation, a nonprofit devoted to ensuring that our community enjoys exceptional recreational opportunities, natural beauty and open spaces, and that those assets exist for generations to come.

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