Despite Cold, Knoxville Open Streets Celebrates SoKno

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Photos and Story by Heidi Hornick

With yesterday’s temperature never getting above 40 degrees, and the wind chill making it feel like 35, only the hale and hearty would be expected to attend an outdoor event. Open Streets is as much a celebration of a community’s progress as it is an opportunity for the entire city to get outside and move around. Based on those objectives – and despite the cold – yesterday’s South Knoxville edition was a success. Turnout was surprisingly good, with people wending their way from the Gay Street Bridge down Sevier Avenue to Suttree Landing Park.

Mountain Biker Sculpture by Kelly Brown, Alliance Brewing, Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

“We’ve been to almost every Open Streets,” said Bryan Benson of Knoxville, as he played with his daughter in the Alliance Brewery parking lot. “We think it’s great.”

Bryan and Bellamy Benson, Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Bellamy Benson, Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

People walked, skated, biked. Most were bundled up in winter coats, hats and gloves. Fires in metal cans were a popular method for staying warm as were the libations at Alliance. Some of the folks manning booths were wrapped in blankets. Live performances and many of the activities were not held due to the weather, but that didn’t stop the people that turned up from enjoying themselves.

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Lucy Farley, Age 2, Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Sally Buice of Nourish Knoxville, Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

South Knoxville is on the ground floor of an inevitable renaissance. Several businesses have opened on Sevier Avenue such as Alliance, Three Bears Coffee, The Landing, Uncle Lem’s Mercantile and Honeybee Coffee Company. The vibe feels much like Market Square did back in 2005. Five older homes sit on a stretch of Sevier, between Claude and Dixie Streets. Four out of the five are renovated or in the process. Near the bridge, several waterfront projects are in full swing. Other developments on the Southside have been completed are planned.

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Open Streets Knoxville, October 2017

Comments

  1. Al Lapins says:

    Pleased to see coverage about South Knoxville. Don’t get much of that in other media.

  2. Good pics. It seemed like there were more people on bikes than at previous Open Streets, maybe because South Knox has all those bike trails. They all looked happy to be able to ride around without car traffic.

    Kudos to Pellissippi State students who were the majority of the volunteers at the event.

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