Weekends are better with butterflies

Carol EvansOur Town Outdoors

Butterflies will be a big deal this month, starting on Saturday, Aug. 3, with the fourth annual Butterfly Festival at the University of Tennessee Arboretum in Oak Ridge.

The festival’s highlight will be the release of 300 butterflies at noon; children are invited to help with the release. There will also be children’s activities, an insect zoo, artisans and food vendors.

Don’t worry, there’s also an educational aspect, with three speakers on hand in the morning: Stephen Lyn Bales, retired senior naturalist at Ijams Nature Center; Bill Klingeman, professor of plant sciences at UT; and Shirley Raines, retired president of the University of Memphis.

Stay tuned for info on another butterfly festival, Aug. 17 at Stanley’s Greenhouse.

More outdoor fun for children is in store on Saturday, Aug. 10, with the Gulf Park Kids Triathlon at Gulf Park Pool. There will be three divisions to accommodate even tadpoles!

For adults, there are some nice opportunities to get outside and then cool off with a refreshing beer – for a good cause.

RSO Pint Night is Tuesday, Aug. 6, at River Sports Outfitters. You can sit on the porch and enjoy a brew, with proceeds going to Catalyst and Spark. Knoxville Zoo will bring some animals around to enliven the evening.

And on Wednesday, Aug. 7, SoKno Taco Cantina’s Urban Wilderness Wednesday invites trail runners and mountain bikers to get out and play and then come back to receive a free Blackhorse beer. There will be happy-hour pricing on Cervezas, and proceeds will go to Ijams Nature Center and DreamBikes.

For details on these events and many more, 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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