Knoxville City Parks Programs

The City of Knoxville’s Kid A’Riffic Fun in the Park program is back for another summer. Aimed at kids ages 2-12, these activity-packed free play dates run from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. every Wednesday in June and July (no events the week of July 4).

The launch event will take place on June 1 at the Ijams Nature Center in front of the visitor center. The rest of the schedule is as follows: Lakeshore Park (June 8); Victor Ashe Park (June 15); Botanical Gardens (June 22); Fountain Municipal Park (June 29); Baker Creek Reserve (July 13); World’s Fair Park Festival Lawn (July 20); Inskip Park (July 27).

“We just want families to get out and experience all the different parks the city has to offer,” said Kyndra Brewer, director of the city’s Office of Special Events.

“When Kid A’Riffic premiered in 2019, it was exclusively in Market Square. We decided to branch out and go to all the different parks in the neighborhood.

The city of Knoxville plans to continue mixing. “We’ll be bringing some favorites back to World’s Fair Park, Victor Ashe and Lakeshore,” Brewer said. “We are thrilled to be at Inskip; I hope Fountain City’s brand new playground – and botanical gardens are such a beautiful and untapped resource. This event will have a “Touch a Truck” activity.

Kid A'Riffic Fun in the Park in summer 2021.

Each week, a rotating schedule of community partners will be announced on the city’s Facebook page to provide different items for each event, according to Brewer. Home Depot, Friends of the Library, Knox County Library, Muse Knoxville, Knoxville Arts and Fine Crafts Center, KORE and Zoo Knoxville, as well as Dogwood Arts, will all participate. Friends of the Library plans to sell used books for some of the Kid A’Riffic Fun in the Park events.

“Dive in Deep” is the theme for the Summer Library Club of Read City USA and the Knox County Public Library this year. To sweeten the deal for young readers, summer reading program incentives include a free scoop of edible cookie dough, a free comic book, passes to local attractions, and a slice of Tomato Head pizza.

Four-year-old Alexander McQueen tries out ladder ball, one of the many games KORE Mobile will bring to parks in Knoxville this summer.

The KORE Mobile Proximity Truck will also be back with different games, including revising some basics like cup stacking, balance boards, and square nine.

Check out the full schedule of Kid A’Riffic Fun in the Park events here.

Knox County Parks and Recreation is hosting several events this summer.

They recently hosted their first-ever Spring Festival with Lawn Games at Carl Cowan Park, complete with an explosive mini sports arena, home derby and sunset yoga session.

And there’s a lot more to come.

Yoga in the park

“We’re launching a new health initiative, and one of the things we’re trying to do is get people involved in physical activity,” said Joe Mack, senior director of parks and recreation. “We started a free yoga series in the park and this year we’re trying to hit a park in North, East, South and West Knox County.” Yoga mats on loan will be available for those who do not have one.

Virtual walk through Tennessee

“On June 1, we’re partnering with the Knox County UT Extension to engage the community in a virtual walk through Tennessee,” Mack said. “We want to do multiple events and challenges to keep Knoxville one of the healthiest counties. More details on Walk Across Tennessee at https://www.walkacrosstn.org.

Walk with your commissioner

Hike the New Harvest Park Trail and chat with Commissioner Courtney Durrett at 4 p.m. June 2. Then stop to shop at the Farmers Market. “These walks will highlight Knox County Parks and what they offer,” Durrett said. “And provide an informal setting to discuss anything with me.”

Father’s Day Golf Tournament

Parks and Recreation is sponsoring a golf tournament on June 17 at the Three Ridges Golf Course. Lunch is at 1:30 p.m. and check-out times are at 2:30 p.m.

Construction of a dog park

“Construction has started and we are now finishing it at Beverly Dog Park,” Mack said. “Then we will start with Powell Station Park or Clayton Park in Halls. We don’t have a date on the New Harvest Dog Park; we are still working on exact location details. We don’t want to disturb the trail and we want it to be big enough to have large and small dog parks.

Events will be posted here or on any of the Knox County Parks @knoxcountyparks social accounts.

Mack said they were proud of the recent installation of two ADA-accessible kayak launches, one at the Beaver Creek Kayak Club headquarters behind the Powell High baseball stadium and another four hours down in the creek at Roy Arthur Stormwater Park. A flotilla recently took place to celebrate the start of the season. To connect with the Beaver Creek Kayak Club to participate in future events or find someone else to float with, head over to their facebook page.

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