Family Activities and Events at T&T 2018 - Rain or Shine!
The Friends of South Cumberland State Park are thrilled to present the 15th Annual Trails and Trilliums festival on April 13-14-15, 2018, with a new venue and renewed focus on family-friendly activities. FREE Family Fun activities, a full slate of nature-focused Speakers and Workshops, and our Art and Craft Vendor Marketplace take place on Saturday, April 14th, from 10 am to 3 pm; Guided Hikes will be offered Friday, Saturday and Sunday, April 13th thru 15th. All of these activities happen at the South Cumberland State Park Visitor Center on U.S. Highway 41, 4 miles east of I-24, Exit 134, in Monteagle. Saturday evening's Wine & Wildflowers celebration, a fund-raiser for the Friends’ work on behalf of the Park, takes place from 5:30 ’til 7:00 pm at the Monteagle Inn, one-half mile east of I-24, Exit 134.
Family Fun activities are made possible by the
generous support of Doug Ferris and John D. Canale.
Fun for the Whole Family
It's a grand day of outdoor adventure at the South Cumberland State Park Visitor Center! You'll find numerous interactive Family Fun activities, FREE for kids and the adults who accompany them! At noon, at the amphitheater, we'll feature live music by the Tracy Acoustic Jam, and at 1:15, also at the amphitheater, by the Dubose Deacons! Don't forget to bring a picnic lunch, blanket and/or lawn chairs! For another lunch option, you can visit the on-site food truck from Shenanigans restaurant in Sewanee. Also be on the lookout for Ramble, the Tennessee State Parks raccoon mascot, and Artemis, the park’s red-tailed hawk, who will be out and about! For the adults, we have a great line-up of nature-themed speakers and workshops, scheduled throughout the day at the new amphitheater, and in our program tent.
Here's what you'll find at Trails and Trilliums Family Fun this year:
Zip Line, Slack Line and Rope Climb
For the kids, Park rangers have teamed up with Coalmont Fire Department Captain Gene Richards and the Coalmont High Angle Team to construct exciting zip line and slack-line (low ropes) courses. Zip-liners will start from a 15-foot-high, hill-top platform and get a bird’s-eye-view of the entire event. Younger adventurers will enjoy balancing on the slack line, and tackling a climb on the harnessed rope. Bring your camera!
The Critter Castle
Kids will love hands-on adventures with a range of wildlife and baby farm animals. Meet Purdy the Possum, Toad-ally Awesome, plus friendly snakes, turtles, frogs, baby pygmy goats, rabbits, ducks, salamanders and more. The animals are provided by a certified TWRA Wildlife Rehabilitator and Heart in Hand, Critters Hollow Ranch & Rescue, McMinnville, Tennessee. Parents and grandparents, here's another great "photo op"!
Fairy Houses & Gnome Homes
Children will love to design their own magical homes out of bark, pinecones, leaves and other natural materials. Imagination and outdoor play combine as their tiny houses are added to the park’s new Enchanted Fairy Village.
The Pioneer Outpost
Davy Crockett and Tennessee Pioneer re-enactors will lead kids of all ages through a range of frontier activities: hatchet throwing, working the two-person crosscut saw, matchless fire-making, wood splitting and a black powder rifle demonstration.
Make Your Own Root Beer
Did you know that root beer originally came roots? Help make a batch the old-fashioned way by boiling the Sassafras roots over a campfire. You can also roast marshmallows while the roots cook!
The Storybook Trail Grand Opening!
Be among the first to join our storytellers and explore the trail — literally! — of a children’s nature story, Over in the Forest: Come and Take a Peek. This new, permanent exhibit features book “pages” which are posted on signs along the Meadow Trail, behind the park’s Visitor Center.
Welcome to Fort Cumberland!
All kids who love to build and play in forts will want to visit Fort Cumberland. We'll have branches and connectors for kids to build their own rustic structures, or explore the ones already built.
In the garden: Worms, Birds, Seeds and Birdfeeders!
Come see the new in-progress native plant teaching garden. When complete, the garden will include herbs, grains and fruits native to the South Cumberland Plateau. Kids will have the opportunity to plant seeds in the new raised bed and make bird feeders from pinecones. Adults and kids alike can get the scoop on worms and how they benefit the garden. You can learn how to build your own worm composter out of commonly-available materials!
Explore all the new things in the Visitor Center!
Explore what's new inside the Visitor Center! There are lots of cool things to check out, like the new exhibit area, a digital microscope, bird identification silhouettes, animal dioramas, a pioneer cabin (complete with pioneer costumes you can try on!), a coal mine, fossils, huge tree rings, a cool video about all the amazing waterfalls in South Cumberland State Park, and much more!
Great Fun for a Great Cause!
All proceeds from food and vendor sales benefit the Friends of South Cumberland State Park, an all-volunteer, non-profit organization, working in support of the Park. Most hikes have a capacity limit, and many will fill up quickly, so register early to be sure you get your slot on the hikes you want! Learn more about the Friends at FriendsOfSouthCumberland.org.
Below are photos from previous Friends events, depicting things similar, though not necessarily identical, to those planned for Family Fun activities on Saturday, April 14th.
Click on any image to see an enlargement.