Nashville's Outdoor Fun
This is Music City, if it feels good outside, then we are playing outside. Mark your calendars for the big music festivals happening each month, find out what the many Nashville attractions are doing outside, play at any of our bountiful parks, enjoy the weather while discovering the past, or enjoy a sporting event right here in Nashville.
There is A LOT to do in Music City, so you can either follow along, or click on the links below to jump around.
Nothing better than getting together with hundreds of friends, and listening to some great live music in Music City. Finish the summer with free concerts every Thursday evening starting in August, and a three day festival in September during Live on the Green.
Outdoor concert series are happening throughout Nashville. Head over to Centennial Park for Musicians Corner presenting free family friendly live music every Saturday from 2-5pm in September, and October. Then check out Bluebird on the Mountain, an annual summer concert series presented by the Bluebird Cafe. Hit songwriters play their best and your favorite songs on the portico of the Dyer Observatory. Bluebird on the Mountain is each month starting with May 17, and ending October 4. Take a trip out to Cumberland Caverns for Bluegrass Underground, a radio show recorded live 333 feet below ground at a natural amphitheater. Every Thursday, June 12-July 31, head to Riverfront Park for Nashville Dancin' featuring live performances from Will Hoge, Houndmouth, The Apache Relay, and more. June 27 begins the 12th annual Frist Fridays as patrons are invited to enjoy an evening of live music every last Friday of June, July, and August behind the Frist Center for the Visual Arts. The Woods Amphitheater at Fontanel, nominated for best small outdoor concert venue by Pollstar, opens up during the summer nights, and each year offers a great line up including Ray Lamontagne, Old Crow Medicine Show and more! Also every Thursday, Fontanel hosts outdoor concerts during their Concert Cruise In featuring custom cars and great times for family and friends. The beautiful Arrington Vineyard hosts Music in the Vines, a free live concert event every Friday and Saturday from 5-9pm, and Sunday 2-6pm. Make sure to check out some of the other concerts going on in Music City by visiting: www.visitmusiccity.com/upcomingconcerts.
Big Outdoor Shows
June 12-July 31
Live on the Green
Outdoor Attractions & Activities
Enjoy the outdoors at the Nashville Zoo at Grassmere, and see over 400 different species including clouded leopards, red pandas, elephants, giraffes, and more. Make sure to check out Ice Day at the Zoo happening July 26. A day where you can chill out with the animals while enjoying fun activities, free ice cream samples, water slide inflatables, and more. Then witness the 55 acres of beautiful splendor at Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum of Art. This summer they will feature David Rogers' Big Bugs. Don't worry, they are not real bugs, but gigantic bugs made of natural materials. For this amazing exhibit Cheekwood will offer interactive activities for children and adults. Everyone loves miniature golf, and go-karts! Grand Old Golf & Go Karts holds three award winning miniature golf courses and an outdoor go-kart track that equals fun for the whole family. Cumberland Caverns is open year round, seven days a week with daily scenic walking tours, daytime adventure trips, and overnight spelunking with camping in the cave just 2 hours outside downtown Nashville. Lost River Cave & Valley is Kentucky's only underground boat tour just one hour north of Nashville. The tour begins with a walk along the river's edge, and then arrive at the massive cave entrance where you will board a boat and glide along the river into enormous cathedral-like passages.
We can't forget about the water parks! Check out the Nashville Shores, a 385-acre water-filled play area for the entire family. Water slides, wave pools, lazy rivers, OH MY! The little ones will LOVE Kowabunga Beach, a massive water treehouse and spray ground, multiple water slides, three pools, and so much more! Nashville Shores is also home to Treetop Adventure Park! An aerial adventure through the woods. After you are done flying on zip lines, enjoy the 100 different obstacles which is great for families to come together. Make sure to check out Adventureworks, an amazing zip line experience with over 40 acres of forest. Have fun at Wave Country where you can ride the waves, and relax in the sun. Feel free to browse through all of Music City's great attractions here: www.visitmusiccity.com/attractions.
Special Outdoor Events
Nashville Zoo at Grassmere
Ice Day at the Zoo
Cheekwood Botanical Garden and Museum
May 23-August 31
Hours of Operation
Treetop Adventure Park at Nashville Shores
Hours of Operation
Hours of Operation
Hours of Operation
Have an Adventure
Music City has plenty for those who enjoy exercising, and exploring. Groups will love to pedal around Nashville and see the sights on the Nashville Pedal Tavern. This awesome tour is a party on wheels. Perfect for having fun in the sun, and stopping at various locations around Music City. Families and friends will love Sprocket Rocket Tours. It's like riding around in your own personal night club. It fits 16 people, pedal-powered, and has neon lights! A great way to tour historic downtown Nashville. Pioneer the trails with Bike the Greenway. They operate from Two Rivers Park, and will actually provide transportation for those in need. Enjoy a guided tour of the city with Green Fleet Bicycle Tours. Make your own special day and borrow a Nashville B-cycle. This gives you the chance to go at your own pace, and explore each corner of the city. Discover what has just won best little Southern town by Garden and Gun on foot with Franklin on Foot, just south of downtown Nashville.
Music City's Parks
We are proud of our open spaced parks so people can appreciate all the beautiful weather Music City has to offer. The Warner Parks (Edwin and Percy) combine to make 2,684 acres to include picnic areas, hiking trails, running courses, and so much more. Talk a walk on Nashville's Greenways which connects neighborhoods to schools, shopping areas, downtown, recreation areas, open spaces, and other points of activity. Centennial Park is 132 acres and features The Parthenon, a full scale replica of the Athenian original. Inside the Greek temple is a 42-foot statue of Athena just like the Parthenon in ancient Greece. Centennial Park also has a one-mile walking trail, and many other historic shrines to see. Bicentennial State Park is a great area to enjoy the sunshine, and discover Tennessee's rich history with the numerous monuments around the park. Eastland Park is an awesome patch of land with plenty of playgrounds, and hosts a lot of special events throughout the year. East Nashville visitors will also want to check out Shelby Bottom Park filled with 5 miles of trails perfect for hiking, biking, running, and wildlife watching. Fannie Mae Dees Park, or Dragon Park located in Hillsboro Village is beloved by locals. It is called Dragon Park because of the large mosaic serpent sculpture that slithers through the landscape. Children love it, and adults relish in its beauty. Children love to spend time at Cumberland Park, a one-of-a-kind nature and play area that includes a sand play, stepping-stone path with mist, stone climbing ropes, climbing nets, exploration trail, and a fountain to cool you off during those extra hot days. Take a walk through Walk of Fame Park to see the stars from different genres who have contributed to the world through the music industry, and hold a special connection with Music City. Inductees include Elvis Presley, Jimi Hendrix, Reba McEntire, Emmylou Harris, Little Richard, Hank Williams, Vince Gill, The Crickets, Kings of Leon, Barbara Mandrell, Wynonna Judd, Roy Orbison and more. We have not forgotten about our four legged friends. Warner, Shelby, and Centennial Parks all welcome dogs. Please visit www.nashville.gov/Dog-Parks for more information on rules and policies.
Special Park Events
Nashville Shakespeare Festival
August 14-September 14
Nashville's Lakes & Rivers
Radnor Lake is a 1,200-acre lake and perfect for observing wildlife in their natural habitat including river otters, beavers, mink, muskrats, bobcats, coyote, and the white-tailed deer. Percy Priest Lake is a 42-mile long 14,000-acre lake and just a short 15-minute drive from downtown Nashville. Percy Priest Lake offers a wide range of recreation activities for locals and for those just visiting Music City. Old Hickory Lake, just north of Nashville, offers a variety of outdoor fun including fishing, camping, hiking, picnicking, boating, and water skiing. After your fun on Old Hickory, finish your night at Barefoot Charlie's Restaurant right off the lake, and always having a party. Don't forget about the adventures to be had on the Harpeth River. Paddle, swim, or float the day away on the historic Harpeth River which offers canoe rentals from March to October.
Into the Past
The Spring and Summer months are a perfect time to explore Nashville's many outdoor historical sites. Step inside the beautifully preserved home of our nation's 7th president at The Hermitage, Home of President Andrew Jackson. Enjoy the 1,100 acres of the original farm owned by Andrew Jackson, and learn about life during the 19th century. The Belle Meade Plantation is a 19th century historic Greek Revival mansion commissioned by John Harding in 1845. Guests are welcome to explore the 30 acres of the Belle Meade Plantation which includes the dairy, horse stable, carriage house, mausoleum, gardens, and a log cabin. Learn about Nashville's role during the Civil War at The Battle of Franklin Trust as you explore the Carter House, and Carnton Plantation. Next, immerse yourself into the past at Travellers Rest Plantation the home of John Overton, one of Nashville's first political leaders. Make sure to browse through the other great historical sites and museums Nashville has to offer here: www.visitmusiccity.com/historical.
Enjoy the thrill of summer baseball with the Nashville Sounds. Peanuts, home runs, Cracker Jacks, and a game almost every single day. Golf lovers will need to check out the Hermitage Golf Course, voted #1 Rated Public Course in the State by Golf Digest, or Gaylord Springs Golf Links, named Middle Tennessee's Top Public Course by GolfWeek Magazine. Then get ready for some football, with an excellent pre-season game of the Tennessee Titans at LP Field towards the end of summer!
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