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Free Things To Do In Johnson City, TN!

Updated on March 23, 2019
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I have lived in Johnson City, TN, for twelve years, and am always on the lookout for fun, free things to do with the grandchildren.

Johnson City, that's my steeple!
Johnson City, that's my steeple! | Source
Johnson City in fifteen pictures!
Johnson City in fifteen pictures! | Source

Fun and free in JC!

I moved to Johnson City, Tn. twelve years ago, and love it. Back then, the city was kind of run down. But a revitalization, has quickly taken effect. Before, no one would really go "downtown" to the old district. They just went to all the new shopping strips, restaurant chains, and the mall, on the other side of town. Now, with the revitalization, "Downtown" is the new hub. You almost can't find any place to park, but don't worry, there is always somewhere to park.

If you like to ride bikes, then you must hit the "Tweetsie Trail". In 2014 the trail finally opened to the public. It is the repurposing of an old railroad line. The railroad tracks were all removed, and gravel was placed down, so that families could bike, walk, or jog, the trail. It is actually a ten mile trail, that goes all the way to Elizabethton. Since its' inception, thousands of people have used the trail for a leisurely afternoon.

Another wonderful place to go, is Founders Park. What originally started as a cure to end terrible flooding downtown, transformed into a great place to walk, and meet up with friends. It is not a long trail, just a great place to walk around, play frisbees, fly kites, or even take your dog. They have disguised this storm water retention project, to look like a natural creek that flows through the park. Don't be suprised to see youngsters, and adults as well wading through the shallow parts to cool off. Take a book, enjoy the scenery, and people watch.

Founders Park has also become established, as the new festival area. There are several held throughout the year. Some are free, and some not. Founders after five is free. Staring in May, until the end of September, there is live music to come listen to. However on the first Friday of every month, there is not. This is because downtown hosts, First Fridays, and they want patrons to visit the businesses. "Barefoot in the Park" is free Yoga, hosted at the park, but you must check the schedule to see when. Don't worry the park is always still available even if not attending the free events.

Want to hit a playground, as well as some walking trails? Johnson City has you covered there too. Winged Deer Park, is a great place to visit, on the outskirts of the city, heading toward Bristol. The playground is right on the river, so there is always a cool breeze. You can also take a dip in the river, if you wish to. Although at this time, the river is drained, for maintenance. There are winding trails, that lead through the woods. These trails are paved, and not to much uphill walking, so you can enjoy the scenery, while not being worn out. There are also fishing piers, but remember, Tennessee requires fishing licenses.

Willow Springs is another wonderful park to visit. This one is located going toward Jonesborough, Tennessee's oldest town. There is a great playground for the kids, and you can picnic as well. There is a long winding trail, to take as well. It passes by a pond, where ducks, fish, and even turtles live. Kids love seeing this. Fido can come to, as long as he/she is on a leash, and you clean up after them. However, there is also a fenced in dog park for them to run free in. There is plenty of wide open spaces for many different people to run, play, and fly kites, without having worry about interrupting each other..

A relatively new addition, to an older park is the Rotary Park Splash Pad! Need to cool those kids off? Send them to the splash pad, after Memorial day! It can get crowded, so get there early to get a good spot. There is also a great wooded area,behind the splash park, actually the original park. You can have picnics, or walk the trails. The pavilions are available to rent, for parties, or company picnics too. .

These are just a few of the fun free things you can do a nice day in Johnson City, TN. There are plenty of indoor things as well, such as festivals, inside the mall, or many events held at the King Centre, downtown. You can even got to the library for special events as well. AS you can see, there is always something to do.


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