World Record Attempt To Swim, Survey Tennessee River Comes To Chattanooga

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Dr. Andreas Fath is attempting a world record swim and survey of the entire 652-mile Tennessee River and will be in Chattanooga on Thursday. 

He will be nearly 182 miles downstream from the starting point with 470 miles to swim before reaching Paducah, Ky. 

Dr. Fath is a world-record-holding endurance swimmer and professor of Medical and Life Sciences at Furtwangen University in Germany. 

A TenneSwim presentation will be held in the Tennessee Aquarium’s River Journey Auditorium on Thursday at 7 p.m. 

The purpose of the swim and survey is to raise awareness about the importance of water quality, collect data on the Tennessee River, compare the Tennessee data to Rhine River data and attempt another world record. 

Dr. Fath will discuss the science behind his record-breaking attempt to swim the entire length of the Tennessee River during this special presentation in the Tennessee Aquarium’s River Journey Auditorium. This program coincides with National Water Quality Month (August) and the Tennessee Aquarium’s participation in the Aquarium Conservation Partnership’s “In Our Hands” public awareness campaign regarding single-use plastics. Among the various pollutants and pharmaceuticals collected in the river water samples he’s collecting, Dr. Fath and his team will measuring the amount of micro-plastics flowing downstream each day.

This isn’t the first time the professor of Medical and Life Sciences at Furtwangen University in Germany has taken on a river. In 2014 he broke the world record for speed swimming the Rhine River from the Swiss Alps to the North Sea. 

Dubbed TenneSwim, Dr. Fath’s second “swim for science” will last through nearly the end of August. His research will ultimately be a comparative study of water quality in the Tennessee River compared to the Rhine. 

Data collected will increase knowledge about the quality and health of the Tennessee River, as well as raise public awareness of water quality in the Tennessee River basin. This project will be the most extensive interdisciplinary water quality survey ever conducted of North America’s most biologically diverse river. 

U.S. partner organizations include the University of the South, the Tennessee Aquarium, The Nature Conservancy, the University of Georgia River Basin Center, Ijams Nature Center, the River Discovery Center of Paducah, Tennessee State Parks, and the Tennessee Valley Authority. 

Dr. Fath will be joined by a group of Chattanooga Open Water Swimmers for the last two miles of swimming into downtown Chattanooga. The public is invited to meet Dr. Fath at the top of the Chattanooga Pier after his arrival, on Friday at 1:30 p.m.

 



Reflection Riding Holds Spring Native Plant Sale This Weekend

Reflection Riding is holding its Spring Native Plant Sale selling the region's best selection of trees, shrubs, and perennials.  Here is the schedule: Friday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. - Public Sale Saturday: 10 a.m.-7 p.m. - Public Sale and Earth Day Festival.  Native plants, grown for a variety of garden conditions, are beautiful, sustainable, and contribute ... (click for more)

TWRA Congratulates Tennessee Wildlife Federation On Award

A strong advocate for the Tennessee Wildlife Resources Agency, the Tennessee Wildlife Federation has been honored with a prestigious national award. The Federation has been named the 2018 Affiliate of the Year by the National Wildlife Federation in recognition of its outstanding achievement in promoting conservation of wildlife and natural resources on the state and national level. ... (click for more)

Robert Gillisse Was Pilot Killed In Plane Crash At Collegedale Airport

The pilot who was killed in a plane crash on the runway of the Collegedale Airport on Friday evening has been identified as Robert Gillisse, 62, of Ooltewah . Charles Swain, who is the director of the airport, said the plane was a total loss. It was a single-occupant plane. He said the plane was taking off when it crashed. He said Mr. Gillisse frequently had flown out of ... (click for more)

East Ridge To Build Open-Air Pavilion Near City Hall

East Ridge plans to construct an open-air pavilion that will include restrooms and a concession area near City Hall and the old McBrien School.  It will be part of a Town Center for East Ridge at the Tombras Avenue property. The city is also applying for a $500,000 grant to help convert Pioneer Park into a refurbished park with a splash pad. The firm of Hefferlin and ... (click for more)

A Tribute For My Brother – Sgt. Jonathan Gardner, U.S. Army

Seven years ago today, my family and I found out that my brother, Sgt. Jonathan D. Gardner, was seriously injured by a roadside bomb, (explosively formed penetrator - EFP), while on a mission in Kuwait. The EFP went through the bottom of his seat and put a softball size hole in his upper thigh. The doctors said that if the bomb had entered the Humvee an inch to the right, he ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Saturday Funnies

All of us who marvel at the sound of bagpipes at a funeral realize the majesty that people like piper Scottie Maclellan can lend to any “homecoming” and for years there has been a wonderful tale out of Nova Scotia that leads this week’s parade of The  Saturday  Funnies. Mind you, I do not write these stories, as many who have followed man’s laughter down through the ... (click for more)