Parks are ready to spring open

Mike DonilaOur Town Outdoors

First, a big shout out to our latest group to participate in the Knox County Parks and Recreation Department’s Adopt-A-Park program.

Thanks to Knoxville Ball Hockey for adopting the Concord Park hockey rink/skatepark!

The group, which has roughly 300 members, plays “dek” hockey on Saturdays from 9-11 a.m. (weather permitting) and they’ve already been picking up trash around the park before they play.

The Adopt-A-Park program is a volunteer opportunity that recruits and trains residents to assist in the general care, supervision and maintenance of neighborhood parks and greenways. Sponsors for years have provided a significant impact on the quality of life in our community. For more information about the program, please go here.

Also, as we mentioned last week, the dog park at Plumb Creek Park was closed the past few days so folks could work on the utility lines. Unfortunately, the weather has delayed the work, so it more than likely will be closed for another few days. I hope to have an update on the Parks and Recreation Department’s social media accounts on Monday.

Earlier this week, we also had a crew over at the Collier Preserve, cutting and removing trees and doing general cleanup to prepare for next week’s ribbon cutting! The Legacy Parks Foundation and Carol Evans, the executive director, did a great job putting together this 12-acre park off W. Emory Road by the Powell Branch Library and Beaver Creek. The ribbon cutting is set for 10 a.m. next Friday, March 26, at 316 W. Emory Road.

Speaking of Beaver Creek, our teams continued work this week clearing what will become the Knox County Water Trail, a 44-mile stretch across five communities between Clayton Park in Halls and Melton Hill Park in Hardin Valley.

We also fixed a water leak at the SportsPark in Karns, and the carpenters continued work on the concessions stands, building new shelves.

Additionally, we had a crew out Wednesday morning, hooking up the walkway to the Concord Park dock. Folks are able to use the dock to tie their boats. The walkway also will rise with the water.

All restrooms at our community parks are now open, although, at the request of the Health Department, we haven’t turned on the drinking fountains.

“It’s business as usual,” said Chuck James, director of parks, earlier this week when I talked to him for the weekly update. “I’ll come up with some spicey stuff next week for you.”

Ha. Good man.

In the meantime, don’t forget: Our crews in the Knox County Engineering and Public Works Department also are hustling. Here’s a snapshot of some of their work:

  • Beverly Oaks – Roadway repair at curb line to seal gap between curb and edge of asphalt to prevent water intrusion and erosion of curb
  • Birdie Lane – Roadway repair as a result of subgrade failure, which included soil grid for subgrade stabilization
  • Strawberry Plains Pike – Guardrail repair
  • Hill Road – Guardrail repair
  • Yarnell Road – Roadside ditch maintenance
  • Campbell Station Road – Typical pothole patching

Enjoy this photo carousel of projects across the county:

Mike Donila is communications director for Knox County government.

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