Celebrate McBee Ferry Park

Carol EvansGet Out & Play

The Legacy Parks team joined Knox County Mayor Glenn Jacobs to officially open McBee Ferry Park. The ribbon-cutting was Thursday, March 30, at 1233 Old Strawberry Plains Pike.

Knox County Parks & Recreation began work on Knox County’s newest park about one year ago. The three-acre park creates access to a 22-mile stretch of the Holston River. The park seems ideal for fishing and boat entry as the original ferry ramp still exists.

Legacy Parks plans to improve the historic and scenic property with environmental and shoreline protection measures and include interpretive signage, a gathering space and parking.

Now let’s look at a sampling of some area events ahead:


Rugged Duck Adventure Challenge – April 1-30: Knoxville Adventure Collective at 865-228-8424. Info: Dirty Bird Events. This event will test your grit while exploring the rugged outdoor beauty of the trail systems and waterways around Knoxville. Run, ride, and paddle your way through nine courses over four weeks wrapped up with one big celebration and a cold one. Details and registration online.

Saturday-Sunday, April 1-2

Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon – April 1-2: 7:27 a.m., Worlds Fair Park. Info: Knoxville Track Club. Something for everyone: Marathon, Half Marathon, 2-person Relay, and 4-person Relay. We will offer an in-person race experience and a Virtual Option. Details and registration online.

Saturday, April 1

Boneanza – Knox County’s first (but surely not the last) doggie egg hunt. Free. Concord Park (west) and Tommy Schumpert Park (north). Small dogs will hunt for treat-filled eggs at 10:30 a.m., while large dogs will hunt at 11 a.m. On-site parking available. Plus, a costume contest and plenty of photo opportunities to capture the day! Some eggs will have special prizes for pups who find them!

April Fool’s Day Hike: 1 p.m., Seven Islands State Birding Park. Cost $8. Info: Seven Islands State Birding Park at 715-630-6848. Join Ranger Clare on a whimsical 3-mile walk and see if you can tell the fakery from the facts. Appropriate for all ages. Register online.

Big Night Hike: 6:30 p.m., Ijams Nature Center. Cost $15. Info: Ijams Nature Center at 865-577-4717. Explore the trails searching for salamanders, frogs, and other amphibians as they wake up from their sleepy winter state as the weather gets warmer. Hike 2.5 miles. Register online.

Sunday, April 2

Annual Wildflower Hikes: 2 p.m., River Bluff Small Wild Area. Free. Info: Norris Dam State Park at 865-426-7461. Join Park Rangers, TVA guides, and TN State Naturalist Randy Hedgepath for a 3-mile hike along the cool Clinch River where guides will acquaint us with the identification, natural history and the folklore of our spring wildflowers. Various times available. Register online.

Monday, April 3

Monday Disc Golf: 6 p.m., Inskip Park. Free. Info: City of Knoxville Parks & Rec at 865-215-1700. Join us on Mondays for disc golf games. All Levels welcome. Free. Details online.

Great Smoky Mountains 101: 6 p.m., REI Pigeon Forge. Free. Info: REI Pigeon Forge at 865-366-4310. Join Friends of the Smokies for an overview of the country’s most visited national park. With 900 miles of trails, 1000 campsites, and more than 20,000 species there are plenty of opportunities to get outdoors for recreation, education, community service and more. Register online.

Tuesday, April 4

Trash Run: 6 p.m., Xul Beer Company. Free. Info: Keep Knoxville Beautiful at 865-521-6957. Litter fun run for all ages. Volunteers walk/run a mile while removing litter surrounding 5th Avenue. Come out and join us for a fun family friendly event while also doing a service for your community. Register online.

SlowKno Tuesday Run: 6:30 p.m., Suttree Landing Park. Free. Info: Slowkno Running Club. Weekly runs and training exercises. All levels. Park has lights. Join group on Facebook for updates.

Wednesday, April 5

Get on the Trail with Missy Kane: 9 a.m., Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Cost $25. Info: Friends of the Smokies. We’re celebrating the 25th Anniversary of “Get on the Trail with Friends and Missy,” former U.S. Olympian and fitness expert. This week, hike 4-miles on the Gatlinburg Trail. Details and registration online.

KTOS Monthly Meeting: 7 p.m., UT Gardens South Greenhouse, Room 124. Free. Info: Knoxville Chapter TN Ornithological Society. Meetings held first Wednesday of the month. Visitors welcome. This month, Kasey Krouse and Dale Madden will discuss the Urban Forest Master Plan for Knoxville. Details on our website.

Thursday, April 6

Migratory Birds: 7 p.m., Zoom presentation. Free. Info: UT Arboretum at 865-483-3571.Join naturalist Stephen Lyn Bales for an overview of migratory birds in East TN. Millions of birds will be returning to northern breeding grounds, flying at night so they don’t overheat while spending the daytime in trees looking for food. Register online.

Saturday, April 8

Wildlife Float at Rankin WMA: 8:30 a.m. Must pre-register with Ron Shrieves at ronshrieves@gmail.com for meeting time and location. Free. Info: Harvey Broom Sierra Club. We’ll explore backwaters accessible only by canoe or kayak and learn about wildlife, especially birds, that inhabit this wetland paradise. Expect 4-5 miles of flatwater paddling. Limited to 4 boats in addition to the leader. Register online.

Spring Tree Walk: 9 a.m., Knoxville Botanical Gardens and Arboretum. Cost $5/non-members; Free/members. Info: Knoxville Botanical Gardens and Arboretum at 865-862-8717. Register online.

AMBC Workday: 9-12 p.m., Anderson School Trailhead. Free. Info: Appalachian Mountain Bike Club. Join us for our monthly work party, it’s a great way to catch up with the community while improving our awesome trails. We’ll provide the tools, bring gloves, safety glasses, and water. Lunch and beverages provided. Details online.

Caving Trip: 10 a.m., Ijams Nature Center. Cost $50. Info: Ijams Nature Center at 865-577-4717. Join a team of Ijams naturalists to navigate this unique ecosystem as you search for creatures that call the caverns home. Helmets and headlamps provided. Register online.

Full schedule at OutdoorKnoxville.com

Add your event to our calendar: Submit an Event at https://outdoorknoxville.com/events-calendar/submit-an-event/

Carol Evans is executive director of Legacy Parks Foundation.


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