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Where To See Fireworks in Chattanooga in 2014

If your Independence Day celebration usually includes watching a professional fireworks display, here are a few places around Chattanooga you may want to go!

On Thursday, July, 3, you can see fireworks at:

Coolidge Park, as part of Pops on the River

after the Lookouts Game at AT&T Fieldfireworks 2

Camp Columbus, at dark

Lake Winnie, at 10pm

the Outdoor Wilderness Theater in Trenton, GA at 9:45pm

 

Then, on Friday, July 4, there will be displays at:

the Signal Mountain Golf Course

the lake in Soddy Daisy

Heritage Park in Dalton

Jasper Recreational Park

Main Street in Dunlap

City Park in Graysville

Lake Winnie at 10pm

Bradley Square Mall in Cleveland

 

Did we miss any? Please let us know in the comments! 

Swimming in the ‘Nooga

Now that school is done, ‘Nooga parents are probably looking for things for kids to do. Watching movies and playing video games is good for a few days, but then you need something else.

Greenway Farms

Greenway Farms

Luckily, Chattanooga is packed with parks, places to swim, and fun summer activities.

Pretty much everyone goes to Coolidge Park in the summer. You have the nice breezes from the river, it’s perfect for picnics, and of course, there’s the fountain to cool off.

Warner Park Pool and Splash Park is another popular destination — because it is awesome! Swim, get sprayed, or have water dumped over you, whatever happens you’re going to be wetter and cooler than when you arrived. There is a minimal charge — between $2 and $5 depending on age and the time of day — but it’s definitely worth it.

You may also want to take a hike in the shade and enjoy some natural creeks. The North Chickamauga Creek Conservancy maintains several trails that are great for an afternoon outside.

If the lake is more your speed, a trip to Chesterfrost Park makes for a relaxing way to spend a summer day. With the sand, sun, water, a cooler of drinks, and a packed lunch, you’ll be set for the day! There are even picnic spots with grills if you want a fancier meal.

What did we leave out? Where’s your favorite spot to swim in ‘Nooga? 

It’s Spring. Are You Cleaning?

This post was written by local freelance writer Dava Stewart. She’s a better writer than she is housekeeper.

I wish I could tell you that my house gets two thorough cleanings per year, once in the spring and once in the fall. The best I can do is say I pink dustpanintend to wash my blinds twice a year. I’m easily distracted in the spring — by the garden, books, movies, my dogs, and almost anything else that will keep me from wiping down baseboards. There are just as many fun things to do in the fall. So, every year, I make lists of big housekeeping projects but rarely actually do them.

With Pinterest around, it’s easier than ever to find helpful hints and tricks when it comes to cleaning and organizing. Chattanooga offers a few great resources as well. Local professional organizer Julie Bestry, who has been profiled on thenoogalife before, writes a great blog called The Paper Doll, where she offers lots of organizational advice for those of us who…ahem…struggle in that arena.

On Facebook, I follow a company located in Copper Hill, TN called The MountainClean Team . They offer tons of ideas for nontoxic cleaning. Things like “use half a lemon and some salt to scrub the sink” are right up my alley. If I can remember to buy lemons.

Recently, the team at Pearl & Associates Real Estate have been sharing some excellent tips for staging that could easily double as spring cleaning tips.

What about you? Do you do any extra spring cleaning? Do you paint your porch rails every spring or wash the drapes on May Day? 

 

Gardening in Chattanooga

There are lots of ways to garden, and it seems like most of them are going on in Chattanooga! Whether you have a big vegetable garden, a flower bed that is the envy of the neighborhood, or a few plants in containers, you are part of the gardening movement. The climate favors growing things here in Chattanooga, and the burgeoning local food movement is helping people learn about the tastiness of super fresh food.

There are tons of resources for gardeners in this town, from big retail operations like The Barn Nursery, to smaller places like Green Thumbs Galore or Possum Creek Herb Farm, where you will find a more personal touch. You can also get involved in several community garden projects:

Lemon Balm is easy to grow and makes a tasty tea!

Lemon Balm is easy to grow and makes a tasty tea!

Planting, nurturing, and enjoying the produce — whether it’s food or flowers — of even the smallest garden is rewarding, no matter your age. It’s especially fun to garden with children. A single growing season is short enough for kids to stay interested, and enough happens that they are usually amazed.

Do you garden? What do you grow? Would you encourage your neighbors to try it?

 

(Half of) the Mega Post of Things To Do in May

This post is so big that we are breaking it into two posts. Today, we offer a whole bunch of events going on in Chattanooga through Mother’s Day. If you know of something awesome, interesting, fun, or cool happening in or around Chattanooga this month that we have left off or that you’d like to see in the second half, please let us know in the comments. We’ll be happy to add your event!

Without further ado, here’s (half of) the mega list:

May 1 – May Day

May 1 – Artists of all stripes will gather at the Heritage House for the Ambi Artists Creative Cluster.

May 1 – Scenic City Roots Live at Track 29. Tickets are $10 and the show includes music from a wide variety of genres.

May 1 – Sound and Image: Harlem Renaissance, Civil Rights and Beyond at the Hunter Museum. UTC Professor of Saxophone and Hunter curators will explore the current special exhibition. Event begins at 6 pm.

May 1-3 – 24th Annual Boxcar Pinion Memorial Bluegrass Festival. If you’ve spent much time in Chattanooga, you’ve probably seen the white bumper sticker with the silhouette of a man playing a stand up bass. This festival is a Chattanooga favorite!

May 2 – Sister Rosemary, subject of the book Sewing Hope, will speak at Christ United Methodist Church. Sister Rosemary has been named one of Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people. Admission is free, and the event is non-religious.

May 2 – The Appalachian Pig Pickin’ Block Party at TerraMae. Tickets are $20 and include dinner and one drink. There will be music and plenty of fun!

May 2 – Here Come the Mummies at Engel Stadium. The show will raise money for the Veterans Entrepreneurship Program at UTC.

May 2 – Seether at Track 29. Tickets are $29 in advance and $32 the day of the show. This is a standing room only show, and restricted to those age 18 and older.

May 2 – Nightfall Kickoff with Forro in the Dark. Chattanooga’s favorite free concert series gets started with some lively Brazilian dance music.

May 3-4 The Green Thumbs Galore Driveway Sale — if you love plants, you’ll want to make it to this sale. The owners are friendly, knowledgeable, and love to talk about plants. Plus, their yard is gorgeous!

May flowers

May flowers

My 3 – 3 State 3 Mountain Challenge for all the bicyclists.

May 3 – The 8th Annual Children’s Hospital Dragon Boat Festival. Help support the Children’s Hospital and enjoy some dramatic boat racing fun.

May 3 – Make Your Own Zine at ArtsBuild from 9am to noon. Spend the morning creating your own work of art. The class will be taught by Aggie Thompson, professor of graphic design at UTC.

May 3 – Friends of Stringer’s Ridge will be holding Burger-Pint Night from 6-10pm at the Gear Closet. Tickets are $15, and all ages are welcome; ID will be required for beer.

May 4 – Bike to the Park – The Chattanooga Lookouts help kick off National Bike Month with this fun promotion. Ride your bicycle to AT&T Field and enjoy valet parking.

May 4 – The Chattanooga Market will feature authentic Mexican food, salsa dancing, and cerveza on el Cuatro de Mayo.

May 4 – First Free Sunday at Hunter. Enjoy the museum and have some fun — for free!

May 5 – Cinco de Mayo

May 7 – Society of Work presents Nuts + Bolts: The Psychology of Business. Shelley Prevost will speak about the psychological aspects of starting a business. Tickets are $10 and the event is from 5:30-7pm.

May 9 – Nightfall – Packway Handle Band

May 10 – Tennessee Aquarium Sleep in the Deep Family Sleepover – An overnight adventure and behind the scenes look at the animals in the Tennessee Aquarium. Ticket prices range from $60 to $73.50

May 10 – Indigo Dyeing Workshop. Spend an evening learning something new, enjoy a meal and cocktails, and have a great time. Tickets are $60, and the event is in Lafayette, GA.

May 10 – Chattanooga Craft Beer Festival. Beer lovers rejoice! There will be food, and lots of beer to sample, and Soul Mechanic will provide music. Pre and post parties to be held at the Terminal Brewhouse. Tickets are $50, no children or pets.

May 10 – If you prefer wine, you may want to check out the Spring Wine Fest at The Georgia Winery. Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door.

May 10 – A music series for kids, the Grasshopper Concerts will take place at various parks throughout the summer. The first one will be at Riverview Park at 2.

May 11 – Mother’s Day

May 11 – Mother’s Day Celebration at the Chattanooga Market. There will be a special performance by the CSO!

May 11 – Moccasin Bend Brewery Tour and Tasting

Easter in ‘Nooga

Easter dresses -- a lovely tradition!

Easter dresses — a lovely tradition!

Whether you celebrate Easter or simply that spring has sprung, the weekend of April 19-20 promises to be a busy one in Chattanooga.

Last week’s Mega Post of Things To Do in April left out a Chattanooga tradition: the egg hunt in Coolidge Park. Hosted by Stuart Heights Baptist Church, this year is the 6th annual community egg hunt, from 9-11am. Children up to age 11 will search for 100,000 eggs hidden in the park.

Following the egg hunt, there will be an open air worship service. Families are invited to stay later for a picnic, face painting, music, and story-telling.

If your family traditions skew more towards big meals, you might be interested in following Pearl & Associates seasonal board on Pinterest, where they are gathering traditional, southern recipes you may want to try this year.

Regardless of your religious affiliation or traditions, we here at theNoogaLife hope that you are enjoying this beautiful time of year in Chattanooga. With redbuds, dogwoods, tulips, and iris in bloom all over the city, you don’t have to look very far to find colorful beauty!

 

 

The Mega Post of Things To Do in April

Spring is most definitely in the air! Spring in Chattanooga is great — especially if you don’t suffer from allergies (if you do, it’s still pretty nice, but you need to keep the antihistamines close at hand). It seems like the warmer the weather gets, the more fun things there are to do in the Scenic City.

April in Tennessee

April in Tennessee

Here are a few options you may want to consider for April:

The Chattanooga Lookouts season opener is April 3! An evening at AT&T Field in the springtime is a fine way to spend some time.

Also on April 3, you can hear some fantastic live music at Track 29 during Scenic City Roots. The show will feature Billie in the Woods, Sarah Portenza, John Oates, The Dirt Daubers, and Mountain Heart. Tickets are only $10, unless you are a student, then they are just $5.

Throughout the month of April, you can enjoy and learn about jazz by attending one or many of the events of Jazzanooga. Events are scheduled at various venues all over the city and headliners include such notable musicians as Lalah Hathaway and Gregory Porter, among many others. Check out their master schedule to learn more about ticket prices, venues, and times for events.

The Chattanooga Film Festival will be held at multiple venues downtown April 3-6. This event is being held to support film as part of the growing Chattanooga arts scene. Filmmakers, film lovers, and the general population is invited to attend, learn, and enjoy!

The Spring Break Safari Hunt is taking place all over the city. It started on March 15, and lasts until April 20. Various businesses are offering two scavenger hunts: one outside their doors, and another inside the establishment (usually with a paid admission). Participants use clues to find particular objects, then take photos of the object to claim prizes. Check out this guide for all the details!

For folks who want to combine music appreciation and camping, the Back Porch Hootenanny at Cherokee Farms on April 4-5 will be just the thing. Tickets are $50 through Thursday, April 3, and $65 at the gate, and that price includes your camping spot.

Until April 6, you can see Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None at the Chattanooga Theater Centre, and from April 11-May 4, The Pump Boys and the Dinettes will be performed. Check out their Dinner and a Show promotion for a special deal!

Rock City’s newest show is sure to be a hit with anyone who loves magic and fairy tales. Fairytale Nights began on March 28 and will run through April 20. Check out the video for a taste of what to expect!

The Creative Discovery Museum hosts a free family fun night each month, and in April it is on Thursday the 10th. From 5:30 until 8 pm, families can check out the exhibits free of charge.

The 4 Bridges Art Festival is a crowd pleaser! This year it will be held April 11,12, and 13 at the First Tennessee Pavilion. Artists are selected from across the country (competition is fierce!) and 12,000 visitors are expected to attend. One day tickets are $7, and two day tickets are $10.

VW enthusiasts will not want to miss Bug-a-Paluza 16 on April 12 and 13 at Camp Jordan in East Ridge. This annual festival has grown to become one of the largest VW events in the region. Spectator tickets are just $4 and all proceeds benefit the Ronald McDonald House of Chattanooga.

The Master Gardeners of Hamilton County present the second annual Master Your Garden Expo on April 12 and 13 at Camp Jordan. Tickets are $5 for adults, and there will be free lectures, door prizes, demo booths, and plenty of activities for kids.

On April 17, as part of the Film Noir Series at the Heritage House Arts and Civic Center in Chattanooga, you can see The Most Dangerous Game (1932). The movie starts at 2pm, and is sure to be entertaining.

Record Store Day, on April 19, is for owners, employees, and customers of independently owned record stores around the globe to celebrate the unique position of record stores within the community. There are several participating stores in Chattanooga.

The Bun Run is a free flash mob 1 mile fun run and 5K. It’s not a race, just a fun run. The idea is to be silly while being active and having fun. So get out your pastels, your bunny ears, and your running shoes!

Day Out with Thomas the Tank Engine will be April 26 and 27, as well as May 3, 4, and 10, at the Tennessee Valley Railroad Museum. For everyone older than 2, tickets are $22 on Saturdays, $20 on Sundays. Group discounts are available when arrangements are made in advance.

Fans of locally grown produce will celebrate on April 27, opening day of the Chattanooga Market for the 2014 season. Shop for local foods and crafts and enjoy live entertainment by Louise Mosrie and Jennifer Daniels from 11-4.

Have we left out anything? Let us know in the comments if you are hosting or aware of an event you’d like to share!

2 New Options for Family Fun in Chattanooga

Chattanoogans have two new options for active fun. A new climbing and fitness center in the heart of downtown, and a jump park on the rapidly growing southside. Both offer a chance for kids and adults to have fun while getting in a good workout.

High Point Climbing Gym opened on December 3, 2013. Local real estate agent Brandi Pearl Thompson visited in February with her family and says, “It’s beautiful and so much high point gym outside at nightfun!”

The gym is visually stunning as well as being fun. Special lighting makes the building appear to glow at night, and the exterior is constructed of extra-strong, translucent plastic — so climbers can look out across the plaza around the Tennessee Aquarium. Kids as young as three are welcome to use any of the climbing rooms except the bouldering room (where people climb without the same safety gear).

High Point offers more than just climbing; it’s a complete fitness facility that includes a weight room, a yoga room, and an aerobic room with treadmills, a stair climber, and spin bikes. High Point also hosts a climbing school where students of any level learn, practice, and become better climbers.

Across town, The Jump Park opened in February 2014, giving us all a place to jump around. A trampoline park, featuring over 50 connected trampolines (18,000+ square feet!), The Jump Park also has a game room and a foam pit. There are no age restrictions, and kids and adults alike can enjoy a jumping good time. Parents/guardians are welcome to simply observe the kids jumping, but why would you want to do that? The fun’s in the jumping!

The Jump Park can be rented for birthday parties and other events. While no one on thenoogalife team has visited the park yet, we are all eager to do so. Have you been to either facility? What did you think?

 

Profile of Nooga Professional Organizer Julie Bestry

Between toys, clothes, snacks, school work, sports, and more, being a parent requires some mad organizational skills! Local Chattanooga professional organizer Julie Bestry offers these tips:

Julie Bestry

Julie Bestry

Everything has a home. If an item is worth keeping, it needs to have a place to be kept. Julie suggests teaching children early to let go of items that are no longer used, enjoyed or appreciated. Possessions that are still used and enjoyed should be placed in their “homes.” Make something of a story of it: shoes left in the middle of the floor are lonely for their other shoe friends in the closet, for example.

Labels! Even children who cannot read can recognize stickers, so labeling all of the toys that go on a certain shelf with the same sticker can begin the process of helping kids learn where things go. As they learn and grow, an electronic label maker can make it easy for kids to help put things away in other parts of the house.

Change your perspective. As adults we sometimes create organizational systems that make it difficult for kids to do their parts. For example, if you would like your child to help put away the dishes, but the plates are stored on a high shelf you’re going to encounter some difficulty. Make sure that your storage systems are appropriate for short people!

Escape the toy box jungle. Tossing all the toys in one big bin seems easy, but it is an organizational nightmare. Small toys fall to the bottom, never to be seen (but sometimes are heard from) again, and it’s hard to teach kids how to categorize if everything is in one heap. Low, sturdy shelves with colored bins, and stackable drawers are often a better option.

Smooth the morning routine – the night before. Julie suggest creating a morning “launch pad.” Carve out some time between dinner and bed for kids to think about everything they will need the next day. Put it all together on “launch pad.” The next morning, everyone will feel better and more relaxed as kids know what to expect, and where their things are.

 

Julie Bestry, President of Best Results Organizing, is a professional organizer in Chattanooga, Tennessee, providing guidance in all aspects of organizing and time management. Julie helps residential, home-office, small business and corporate clients save time and money, reduce stress and increase productivity. Contact her at organize@juliebestry.com.