Thursday, May 7, 2009

Fun Knoxville Facts!

Well.. I figured since I'm going to be living here for a while and this weekend officially marks the longest I have EVER been outside of Arizona, I'd better get to know my new surroundings.

Knoxville was settled in 1791 and established in 1792.

The City of Knoxville was incorporated in 1815.

Knoxville was named after Henry Knox, President Washington's War Secretary.

The first train arrived in Knoxville in 1855

When it hosted the World's Fair in 1982, Knoxville was the smallest city to ever host an International Exposition. It was the last successful World's Fair held in America.

Knoxville is 20 miles south of Oak Ridge National Laboratory which was instrumental in the development of the atomic bomb.

The inventor of the Dempster Dumpster, George R. Dempster, was Mayor of Knoxville 1952-1955.

Downtown Knoxville is 936 feet above sea level

The soft drink Mountain Dew had its beginnings with Hartman Beverages in Knoxville in the late 1940's.

In 1974 Walter Cronkite designated Knoxville as the "Streaking Capital of the World." It was in the spring of that year that an estimated 5,000 people on Cumberland Avenue took their clothes off... stripping on the "strip".

In 1933 during the Great Depression, the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) was founded by the U.S. Government to help create jobs, attract manufacturing, and provide electricity for all.

Still on the law books: It is illegal to lasso fish in Knoxville, TN.

Knoxville Zoo is the Red Panda Capital of the World, having the greatest success in breeding and survival of baby Red Pandas.

Knoxville is home to cable TV's HGTV, which is one of the fastest growing networks in cable history with nearly 84 million households in less than nine years.

Bethel Cemetery on Mabry Hill contains the remains of approximately 1,670 Civil War soldiers.

The major Hollywood feature film "October Sky," was shot in and around Knoxville. The 1999 film starred Laura Dern and Jake Gyllenhaal.

In 1978, the Knoxville Zoo had the first African Elephant bred and born in captivity in the Western Hemisphere. Her name was Little Diamond.

Still on the law books: All businesses must have a "hitching post" in front of their buildings in Knoxville, TN.
After we got through mini Vegas and finally got into the mountains it was pretty late in the day. So we opted for a pretty close and pretty short trail that offered beautiful views. The only this it didn't advertise that we got absolutely free was a nice shower on the way up. :) We get wet.

Because it was a shorter trail, it was paved, and very close to all the nearby towns, it was very popular. But the rain washed out all but the most hearty and so we had an enjoyable time.

We walked down to stand at the very bottom of all the falls and Dave pulled out my camera and started working on his photography skills. He did a very good job and I'm sure the centipede appreciated the positive attention.

This is just the bottom half of the falls. The first few picture are at the top, and now we're at the bottom. :)

There was a wild turkey on the side of the road as we were driving away and I tried to get a picture, but instead just got a picture of more green. So I found a nice picture on google to give you an idea of what we saw.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Exploring this new Green world

So after catching up on some much needed sleep and a day of lazing around, we were tired of being indoors. So Dave looked up a near by park and we went exploring.

The Tennessee River runs right through Knoxville and there are a few islands that are almost entirely parks and REALLY nice homes. We went and explored some of the parks. Needless to say, everything is green here.

Here's us by the water.

We went off on a little overgrown side path to see what we could find, and I was a little freaked out over the possibility of running into poison ivy. Luckily, I had my trusty husband who, having lived in a green places before, protected me very well from the could be dangers (Even if he did scare me once when I was in front, but thats okay).

Then on Saturday we were thoroughly bored and done relaxing and on our drive up we'd seen our first real mountains since Arizona on the horizon, so we decided to go and see what trails we could find.

We stopped at an information place to get a map and an idea of trails and things like that. And we found out a lot more then we expected to.

It turns out that the only way to get to Smokey Mountain National Park was to drive through three tourist towns. And these weren't the typical base of the mountain tourist towns with quaint shops and restaurants that one would expect. Nope, the apartment lady was right when she told us it was like a mini Vegas.

This picture is of a hotel where it is Christmas year round. Literally. It may not look like it, but I saw the brochure. Here's the website, I'm not joking.

Here are just a few pictures of some of the things that we saw along our way. We did think about stopping at some of them but they all looked kind of expensive and Dave really wanted to get to those mountains. It was worth it!This one was my favorite so we stopped and took a real picture. It was a museum and we almost went but we stopped after our mountain exploration and decided not to (and it seemed it was more kid oriented). But it was super cool to see.

My favorite part was the little fed-ex box in the upper left hand corner. You can barely see it but... its there.