In conjunction with National Trails Day, Tennessee State Parks and Natural Areas will host a Tennessee Trails Day this Saturday, encouraging volunteers and outdoor enthusiasts to participate in several planned activities across the state.
“Tennessee’s greenways and trails play such a critical role in our health and quality of life, while serving as a strong economic contributor to our local communities,” said Environment and Conservation Commissioner Bob Martineau.
“Tennessee Trails Day gives us an opportunity to celebrate those who have provided countless volunteer hours to create and maintain the trails we enjoy every day.”
Pepsi Beverages Company will help mark the occasion by giving away specially designed T-shirts and cans of Orange Crush, both commemorating Tennessee State Parks’ 75th Anniversary. Shirts and drinks will be given away on a first come, first served basis. Pepsi’s partnership with Tennessee Trails Day and Tennessee State Parks’ 75th Anniversary is part of a five-year contract agreement announced in 2011.
The Tennessee celebration coincides with the American Hiking Society’s annual National Trails Day, which began in 1993 and is the largest single-day trails and outdoor celebration in the country. Thousands of people are expected to get outside and participate in events at local, state and national parks, forests and other public lands from coast to coast.
Since 1993, the American Hiking Society has set aside the first Saturday in June as National Trails Day, bringing together outdoor enthusiasts to participate in educational exhibits, trail dedications, gear demonstrations, instructional workshops and trail projects. It also provides an opportunity to recognize the many volunteers, land managing agencies and outdoor-minded businesses for their support in developing and maintaining trails.
“Tennessee State Parks and State Natural Areas will be offering a wide variety of interesting activities across the state, including trail restoration, employee reunions, cleanup efforts and several guided hikes,” added Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill with TDEC’s Parks and Conservation Bureau. “We are delighted that our friends at Pepsi Beverages Company will help us tie-in this great day with our own 75th Anniversary celebration this year. Our main goal is to engage Tennesseans in appreciating and enjoying what our great public areas have to offer.”
All events are scheduled for Saturday, June 2, and all times are local. Participants should bring water and food, and wear long pants, sturdy and appropriate footwear and work gloves. While most tools will be provided, some projects will require volunteers to bring specific items. Some activities require reservations, so please call to ensure an opportunity to participate.