November Events and Festivals for the Family 

November 1, 2022  |  Permalink

November is here, and Tennessee State Parks have lots of fun family events and festivals planned! We hope to see you and your family at a Tennessee State Park, so we have put together a list of some fun fall events for the family across the state!

Middle Tennessee

Battle of Johnsonville Walking Tour 

Johnsonville State Historic Park

November 4 | 12:30pm to 4:00pm 
Fee: $3 for youth aged 6 to 17; $5 for 18 and up; free for kids under 5  

It is often said to gain a better understanding of an event, you must visit the site on the anniversary of when the event happened. Step back in time with Dr. Jerry T. Wooten, author of Johnsonville: Union Supply Operations on the Tennessee River and the Battle of Johnsonville, November 4-5, 1864, as he leads an in-depth walking tour of the Johnsonville Supply Depot and the Battle of Johnsonville which occurred November 4, 1864.  

Register Here

Battle of Johnsonville Anniversary Event 

Johnsonville State Historic Park

November 5 | 11:00am to 3:00pm 
Fee: Free, donations accepted 

Cannon will ring out along the Tennessee River to commemorate the 158th anniversary of the Civil War Battle of Johnsonville. The free event will feature Civil War-era living history presenters, live musical performances, Federal encampment, Civil War authors, and more. The program is a living history educational event, and no battle reenacting will take place. 

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Somewhere in France 

Sgt. Alvin C. York Historical State Park

November 11 to 13 | 11:00am to 12:00pm 
Fee: Free, donations accepted

"Somewhere in France," the Veterans Day Event at Sgt. Alvin C. York State Historic Park will be held November 11-13, 2022.  Join us as we honor Veterans from all conflicts, commemorate the Great War of 1918, and honor the park's connection with a faraway village in France. 

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Dog Tag Stamping 

Sgt. Alvin C. York Historical State Park

November 12 | 9:30am to 10:30am; 1:30pm to 2:30pm 
Fee: $5 per set of Dog Tags 

One of the first orders out of General Headquarters, American Expeditionary Forces (AEF), Paris, in 1917 was the use of identity tags by all members of the AEF. The tags, also called identity discs, were to be made of aluminum the size of silver half dollars with the information about the individual stamped on them. Two tags were issued to each soldier; in the event of death, one tag was left with the body in burial and the other tag was to be removed and sent to the Chief of the Burial Department. This year at our Veterans Day event, get your very own tags made in camp! 

Moonlight Lantern Walk Through the Woods 

Johnsonville State Historic Park

November 13 | 6:30pm to 8:00pm 
Fee: $3 for youth aged 6 to 17; $5 for 18 and up; free for kids under 5  

Enjoy a guided tour by moonlight as we explore the darker side of the history of Johnsonville. As it gets dusky dark, we'll light our lanterns and be on our way. Hear the bloody stories of the Nashville and Northwestern Military Railroad, visit mysterious Apple Tree Hollow and watch out for the Willow Light as we wind our way through the windy dark to arrive at the Johnsonville Cemetery. 

Hear the stories that have been passed down to us to safeguard for the future. Oral history traditions such as storytelling give us a view into the past. As these tales are told, they are shared with future generations to ensure that they are passed on for perpetuity. 

Register Here

Photo by @Abundant Life Adventure Club

4th Annual Gossett Gobble 5k Trail Run and Food Drive 

Harpeth River State Park 

November 19 | 9:00am to 12:00pm 
Fee: $10 per 5k runner 

The Friends of Harpeth River State Park will be hosting this year's family-friendly 5k at the Gossett Tract along with a 1-mile Fun Run. We are excited to announce that this year's race will be on an all-new course featuring the new Pawpaw Trail to enhance the experience. This race will not be officially timed this year. 

As in year's past, the Gossett Gobble is also a food drive for our local food pantry, The Ark. Please bring non-perishable food items to help us support our community!  

Register Here

Photo by @Tennessee Department of Archaeology

Sellars Farm State Archaeological Area Guided Tour 

November 12 | 10:00am to 12:00pm 
Fee: $10 per person; $20 for families 

Join archaeologist Lacey Fleming of the Tennessee Division of Archaeology for a guided tour of the Sellars Farm State Archaeological Area, located just south of Lebanon, TN. This is a great opportunity as this area can only be accessed through guided tours! 
 
Sellars Farm is a fortified Mississippian period mound complex located along Spring Creek that was first built around AD 1100 and occupied until the mid-14th century. The site is perhaps best known for the discovery of four stone statues during the early 20th century, one of which is the official Tennessee State Artifact. This two-hour-long tour will provide participants with information about the site, the prehistory of the region, and the role of Sellars Farm in the archaeological record of Middle Tennessee and the American Southeast. 

Register Here

Photo by @Tennessee Department of Archaeology

Mound Bottom State Archaeological Area Guided Tour 

November 27 | 11:00am to 1:00pm (This area can only be accessed by guided tour so it’s a special opportunity) 
Fee: Free, donations accepted 

Finish up your holiday weekend with a hike into Tennessee's archaeological past! 

Mound Bottom State Archaeological Area in Cheatham County includes 12 earthen mounds constructed by Native Americans between 1000-1325 CE, during the Mississippian period of Tennessee prehistory. The site is listed on the National Register of Historic Places as well as part of the largest prehistoric mound group in Tennessee and one of the largest Mississippian sites in the American southeast. Today, the site is protected by the State of Tennessee and managed by the Harpeth River State Park. This tour, led by prehistoric archaeologist Aaron Deter-Wolf of the Tennessee Division of Archaeology, will include information on the site and how it fits into the archaeological record of Middle Tennessee and the American Southeast. 

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East Tennessee

Photo by @Tennessee Photographs

November Night Hike 

Seven Islands State Birding Park 

November 11 | 6:00pm to 8:00pm 
Fee: $10 per participant 

Ever wonder what goes on at Seven Islands after dark? What types of wildlife are active when the sun goes down and the stars come out? Join Ranger Stephanie for a 2.5-mile guided night hike. We will listen for the several species of owls that are typically found in the park. We will look at the stars and try to identify constellations if it is a clear night sky. Participants will learn about the birds and wildlife that are active at night in the park. We will likely see the glow of spider and animal eyes beside the trails. The park hours are sunrise to sunset year-round, so this is a special opportunity for visitors to see the park at night with a ranger! 

Register Here

 

Garrison Weekend 

Fort Loudon State Historic Park 

November 12 | 10:00am to 5:00pm 
Fee: Free 

“Garrison Weekend” is a free, family-friendly, living history event that features the daily lives of the men, women and children of Fort Loudoun. 

View an 18th-century infirmary, soldier’s barracks, the commander’s quarters, a blacksmith shop, as well as a Cherokee encampment. Musket, artillery firing, and laundry demonstrations will take place throughout the day. 

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Photo by Fort Loudon Historic Park on Facebook

Autumn Heritage Celebration 

Sycamore Shoals State Historic Park 

November 12 to 13 | Saturday 10:00am to 4:00pm; Sunday 10:00am to 3:00pm 
Fee: Free 

Join us for the Colonial Harvest Celebration at Fort Watauga as the Washington County Militia gather to celebrate recent victories in the War for Independence and give thanks for a bountiful harvest. Enjoy demonstrations of 18th-century life and living history presentations.                                

We will also be having our Fall Fibers Fair! Fall is the time we plan our winter projects and handmade holiday gifts!  Spend a day visiting our region’s finest fiber producers and artists! The day will include workshops, vendors with handmade items for sale, raw fibers, and demonstrations of spinning, weaving, and more! 

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Photo by @M. Silver

Intro to Map and Compass 

Warriors Path State Park 

November 17 | 3:30pm to 5:30pm 
Fee: $4 per participant 

An accurate map and a precision compass can get you TOTALLY LOST, unless you know how to use them! Come learn how to navigate properly with these classic outdoor tools. We will also learn how using the map and compass encourages us to watch our surroundings. No need for batteries, or satellite signal or cellphone towers - just keen eyes and careful attention! 

We'll supply both compasses and maps - you'll supply your attentive senses. Each participant will also get to take home a "mini-topo map" of a local outdoor attraction. This will be a basic introduction to using a map and compass. Weather permitting, we'll spend most of our time "out in the field." Be sure to come dressed for the weather and with proper footwear for walking over uneven terrain. 

Register Here

Photo by @Tennessee Photographs

Sunset and Cider Hike 

Seven Islands State Birding Park 

November 20 | 4:45pm to 6:00pm 
Fee: $8 per participant 

Join Ranger Stephanie for an easy stroll down Kelly Lane Greenway at Seven Islands to the Green House where we'll watch the sunset over the French Broad River. The beauty of the sunset will be enjoyed from the porch area of the Green House as we sip hot apple cider or hot chocolate. Participants will learn about the history of the park and the work that park staff do year-round to make Seven Islands a great place for wildlife and visitors. The total round-trip distance of the hike will be approximately 2 miles and will be entirely along the paved Kelly Lane Greenway. We'll listen and look for birds making their final flights and songs for the day. 

Register Here


West Tennessee

Night Hike FPSHP 2022 

Fort Pillow State Historic Park 

November 12 | 5:00pm to 8:00pm 
Fee: $5 for kids 10 and under; $10 for 11 and up 

Join the staff of Fort Pillow at the butterfly garden parking lot at 5:00pm for a hike on some of the trails that make up this park. Along the way, we will have the opportunity to look at the dark sky and discuss what we find. We will also look at some of the Flora and Fauna that can be found around the park.  

Register Here


Statewide Events 

Day After Thanksgiving Hikes 

November 25 

Skip the Black Friday shopping and join us on the day after Thanksgiving for a post-holiday hike. We have guided hikes for all ages and abilities, from easy peaceful strolls to rugged ramblings. With 57 state parks to choose from, it's easy to find just the right hike at a park near you. 

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Children’s Program Spotlight 

Photo by @Tennessee Photographs

Homeschool Program: America Recycles Day 

Seven Islands State Birding Park 

November 15 | 1:00pm to 3:00pm 

Fee: $6 per child (age 6 and up) 

Join us for America Recycles Day on November 15! This day is meant to promote recycling by focusing on the impact and importance of recycling. Join Ranger Stephanie at the Outdoor Classroom on Hickory Ridge Trail to make some nature-inspired crafts using recyclable materials. We will talk about the importance of recycling and how families can do their part to reduce, reuse, and recycle. Ranger Stephanie will also discuss how the park has used recycled products in park projects over the years. Younger siblings (under age 6) are welcome to attend as well at no charge. 

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Kit’s Club 

Kit’s Club is the newest outdoor program for children ages four to six offered by Tennessee State Parks. Children and their caregivers/guardians will join expert Park Rangers on an exploration of the wonderful outdoors and natural resources in Tennessee. From unearthing wiggling worms to diving into aquatic creatures, Kits Club provides introductory outdoor play experiences while teaching the value of natural recycling. 

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Volunteer Events 

When you volunteer at a state park, you become a part of what makes parks, and the outdoor experience, so incredible. You'll be working beside park professionals that will share their passion and knowledge of the outdoors with you. Volunteering is also a great way to meet other like-minded outdoor enthusiasts! Explore and sign-up for volunteer events across the state. 

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