Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

October 2, 2013

The Best Outdoor Festival might be right here

By Don Hazel
Sun contributor

CROSSVILLE — You may have seen some of those articles in magazines like Outside Magazine, or Backpacker, or Men's Journal that list "the 10 best cities for... living, or for retiring, or for enjoying the outdoors, or for healthy activities or some similar description. The ones that often make the top 10 list for outdoor activities are places like Crested Butte, Colorado, or Asheville, North Carolina, Chattanooga, Tennessee, or Bend, Oregon. But now you will be able to add a new place to that list that is even closer than Asheville or Chattanooga. Add Fairfield Glade.

I am not kidding. This weekend, Saturday, Oct. 5, the Fairfield Glade Community Club will host the 2nd annual "Hit the Trails" festival. Last year the festival was started by the FFG Trails Committee and Friends of Glade Trails, to introduce all the new trails in Fairfield Glade to residents and visitors. This year there will be over 20 additional outdoor organizations represented at the festival... over 20!

Here is just a partial list of the organizations who will be at or in Mirror Lake to provide information about what they do, and how you can join their outdoor fun.

The Friends of Glade Trails volunteers will be there to tell you about the several miles of brand new trails just built in 2013.

If you are interested in hiking or in Tennessee green space, you can talk to representatives from the FFG Hiking group or the Tennessee Trails Association. Cumberland Mountain State Park and the Obed Wild and Scenic National Park will have rangers there. And Tennessee Parks and Greenways folks will be there too, not to mention our own Garden Club.

Do you want to learn about the birds and the bees? The Cumberland County Beekeepers Association can tell you how to get started beekeeping, and if you want to start a bird watching group, this will be your chance.

The Kayak Club will be available to show and tell you about kayaking. Or you can get involved with the Model Boat Sailing Club.

The Softball Team will be here Saturday to recruit you. Looking for something a little tamer? How about bocci ball? The Bocci Ball Club can tell you all about bocci opportunities in our community.

Geocaching is becoming a very popular activity. Come and find out what it is and how much fun it can be. There are already geocaches hidden on several of the Fairfield Glade trails and around our community.

Wildwood Stables and Dog Park representatives will be there to talk animals.

The Fairfield Glade Community Club will have food and beverages as well as music for everyone. Bring a chair and stay awhile from 10 a.m. till 3 p.m.

There will be tents and tables with all kinds of activities and information. There are more organizations that I just don't have room to mention.

There is no charge to attend. It will be a great time to learn about what outdoor activities are available in right here where we live. After Saturday, the words, "there is nothing to do", will never cross your lips again.

Boulder, Colorado and Chamonix, France, look out. Fairfield Glade, Tennessee might just become the next great outdoor activity center of the world.

Comments, questions or suggestions for future nature articles are welcome at don.hazel@gmail.com.