Enjoy a pump track, Dogwood days

Carol EvansOur Town Outdoors

Mayor Madeline Rogero will give an overview of her final budget at a luncheon today at the terminus of James White Parkway, which the city is revamping as a gateway park to the Urban Wilderness. If lunch under a tent, possibly in the rain, doesn’t strike you as big-time outdoor fun, stop by a few hours later!

The city is setting up a temporary modular pump track for bicyclists to enjoy from 4 to 7 p.m. today at the JWP terminus. Pump tracks are hilly ovals that let riders use gravity to catch air and propel themselves forward. While there’s a built-in children’s pump track over at Baker Creek Preserve in the UW, adults won’t get their own till the gateway park opens. Until then, seize the day, er, today!


Winding down the dogwoods

I hope you’ve been out walking, running or cycling the Dogwood Trails and enjoying the beauty of our area. The 58th Annual Dogwood Arts Festival will close out the seasonal celebration this weekend on Market Square, Market Street and the Krutch Park Extension.

Organizers expect up to 50,000 people to head to downtown Knoxville today through Sunday. After today’s rain ends, the forecast looks perfect for enjoying art, music, food and hands-on activities aimed at both kids and adults.

There are still some other Dogwood-related events to enjoy beyond downtown, both on Saturday. The Hard Knox Pizza Dogwood Classic 5K and Kid Fun Mile start at 8 a.m. at Sequoyah Park. And the last of April’s guided Hikes & Blooms starts at 10 a.m. at Panther Creek State Park.

What lies beneath

Get to know Southern Appalachia’s rivers through the documentary “Hidden Rivers,” which will screen at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 30, at Central Cinema and again at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 16, at Scruffy City Hall. Knox County Stormwater and the Tennessee Valley Authority are partnering with Freshwaters Illustrated to educate the public on the biodiversity found in our region and the importance of protecting our waters from pollution. Check out the gorgeous trailer here.

World Penguin Day Week

You may not have realized that April 25 was World Penguin Day, but don’t feel bad about missing out. At 6:45 p.m. Wednesday, May 1, the monthly meeting of the Knoxville Chapter of the Tennessee Ornithological Society will focus on “Way Down Under,” with Gary Bailey of the Kingsport chapter talking about his trip to Antarctica. Penguins will be his main topic! The meeting is free and is at the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, Room 118. (Park in the S66 lot.)

Details on the events above and many more are available on 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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