Off season improvements continue

Mike DonilaFun Outdoors

I don’t want to say too much right now, but it looks like there’s a chance a couple of local companies are going to donate their time, supplies and services to fix and replace the wiring that was stolen from Gibbs Park.

As you might recall, some dirtbag removed the wiring from Gibbs and East Knox parks back in December. The total combined cost to fix everything at both parks is in the neighborhood of $50,000. I should have more information in the next week or so.

In the meantime, if anyone has any information about the incident, please call the Knox County Parks and Recreation Department at 865-215-6600 or the Knox County Sheriff’s Office at 865-215-2243.

Our crews have spent a lot of time this week continuing work on the boat dock at Concord Park (it should be finished by next week), and on Thursday they began installing the poles for the dock at Cherokee Park, which is across from the Cove.

Freshening up at Par 3 Golf Course

“They’ve been there for more than 30 years, and it’s really bad timing right now,” said Chuck James, director of parks. “They must have all been put in at the same time, because they all went bad at the same time.”

One good thing is that TVA lowers the water level this time of year so that folks can make repairs to their docks and clean their boats. The two docks will be ready when the weather is warm and people are back out on the lake!

We also had crews at Ball Camp Park and Mascot Park taking down dead trees. And we’re laser grading the fields at the Sportspark in Karns, moving dirt around to get the fields level and playable.

And speaking of the Sportspark, we’re also installing a fire suppression hood in the concessions stand there.

Additionally, a crew replaced the old, run-down split rail fence at Admiral Farragut Park, and they installed new doors at the Concord Park par 3 golf course and painted the greens for a better winter look!

More gravel at Maloney Road Park boat ramp.

Also, we had folks at Maloney Road Park working on the boat ramp. Some of the bottom washed away, so we filled the gaps in with gravel. We had a similar issue at Melton Hill Park a few years ago and it seems to have held up.

The folks over at the Knox County Engineering and Public Works Department also have been busy working on guardrails and cleaning up trees from the holiday snow storms, as well as performing other routine maintenance.

I want to give a big shoutout to E&PW Director Jim Snowden. The guy and his department are on the ball. Last week and this week when there were threats of wintry weather, he was reallocating and moving around trucks to make sure each district would be adequately covered. He also had folks putting brine on the main county roads and scheduled emergency shifts just in case something came up (On a side note, Jim is out there in the field with his crews!). Thankfully all went well.

Mike Donila is communications director for Knox County government.


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