1349 Gunbarrel Road, Chattanooga, Tennessee 37421

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Chattanooga FREE Eventful Summer Weekends!

Chattanooga from Point Park  (Photo: Wallace Braud)
Chattanooga from Point Park  (Photo: Wallace Braud)

Is your budget keeping you from taking that getaway weekend you desperately need during the summer months?  Then consider Chattanooga, Tennessee as your wallet-friendly destination! 

Read on for some suggestions on how to enjoy our incredible city without putting a strain on your finances.

First Friday of the Month - The Arts on Display:

Whether you enjoy the fine arts, crafts or music, many in Chattanooga's broad spectrum arts community throw open their doors on the "First Friday" of each month from 5:30 - 8:30 pm.

A variety of Chattanooga galleries, artist studios and arts focused businesses join together to put the spotlight on the local arts scene by extending their operationg hours.  This open connection between our artists, galleries and the community, helps support our local artists and musicians.

The list of each month's participants is posted on the First Friday Chattanooga - The Arts Facebook page.

Dingy - Claudio Moore /  This soothing painting bought at a First Friday event will hang  at St Francis Cottage
Dingy by Claudia Moore  /  This soothing painting, purchased at a First Friday event, will hang
at St Francis Cottage to help everyone rest, relax, & restore.

Friday Evenings at Nightfall:

For the past 29 years, generous and benevolent local and national sponsors have brought in nationally-known, diverse musicians to entertain the general public at Nightfall, every Friday evening from May through August on the stage at Miller Plaza in downtown Chattanooga. 

Bring your lawn chairs and enjoy the casual, relaxed atmosphere while listening to top-rated musicians offering a variety of musical styles from many cultural traditions.  Wallace and I have enjoyed many Friday evenings at Nightfall catching up with friends while enjoying great music and sipping local brew.

Wallace and Nancy Braud Celebrating our 37th anniversary at Nightfall!
Celebrating our 37th wedding anniversary at Nightfall!


Chattanooga won Outside Magazine’s Best Town Ever Award for the second time in 2015, so we need not say too much more about the outdoor opportunities to hike, bike, kayak, paddleboard, canoe, fish, rock climb, sky dive and hang glide in this unique area of the United States.  Take a quick look at Outside Magazine’s video featuring Chattanooga’s outdoor scene:

Load up your bikes and enjoy a ten-mile hike or bike ride along the Tennessee River on the Tennessee Riverpark trails, part of the Hamilton County Parks System. 

By Naveed Hassan - Own work, CC BY-SA 3.0

Or head up to Lookout Mountain and explore the pristine scenery protected by the Lula Lake Land Trust.  Open Gate Days are free of charge from 9am to 5pm, so check the calendars on their website for more detailed information when planning your weekend.

For more information on the local outdoor life, Outdoor Chattanooga’s website is the place to go!

Saturday Evenings:

While working downtown, Nancy often opts for a power walk across the historic Walnut Street Bridge over her lunch break.  It’s open 24 hours/day, and what a great way to begin your Saturday evening with a casual, relaxed stroll over the Tennessee River after an eventful day exploring Chattanooga’s outdoor life. 

Riverfront Nights on the Tennessee River at Ross's Landing in Chattanooga.  Beautiful setting.  Great bands!
Riverfront Nights on the Tennessee River at Ross's Landing in Chattanooga.  Beautiful setting.  Great bands!

For six weeks, from mid-July through August, Friends of the Festival organizes Riverfront Nights, another free-of-charge concert series supported by local corporate sponsors.  Check out their website for the 2016 lineup:

For an early start to your weekend fun, try a Throwback Thursday:

Dancing Couple statue on Plaza in front of Hunter Museum of American Art  (Photo by Wallace Braud)
Bronze Statue statue on Plaza in front of Hunter Museum of American Art 
Tom Otterness (b. 1952), Free Money, cast 2006, bronze, 3/3, approx. 107 x 69 x 84 inches
Hunter Museum of American Art, Chattanooga, Tennessee, Museum purchase, 20071
 (Photo by Wallace Braud)

Chattanooga has a wonderful artistic gem in the Hunter Museum of American Art.  On the first Thursday of every month from 4pm to 8pm, there is free admission to the Permanent Collection and a small fee for temporary exhibitions.  You can check the Hunter Museum web site for details on what is being featured when you're ready to peruse the collections.  Bring the whole family!

Exploring the Permanent Collection on Throwback Thursdays (first Thursday of every month) is free. If you're not a museum member, temporary exhibitions are $5 for adults. Children 17 and under are always free at the Hunter.

And, you do have to eat:

Though not free, the Chattanooga restaurant scene is absolutely fabulous and offers numerous culinary options at competitive prices.  There are many websites to guide you through the local food fare options.

You might need a place to stay.

We hope you will choose St Francis Cottage as your Number-One place to stay while exploring Chattanooga.  We’ll keep you posted on our 2017 opening date, and we look forward to meeting you!

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