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Tour the Bearden's Rich History at Open Streets Event 
This Sunday, October 9, the Open Streets Knoxville event will be held from 2 p.m. - 6 p.m. in the heart of the Bearden community.

Hosted by Bike Walk Knoxville with partners including the City of Knoxville, Knox County, and Visit Knoxville, among others, the event will close off Sutherland Avenue, the very lifeline of "The Marble City," as the area has long been dubbed.

Terry Faulkner, a Bearden resident, community organizer, and historian, has worked for over a decade to highlight Bearden's history with granite historic markers along the community's sidewalks and greenway.

There are currently 21 markers that annotate historic figures, architecture, landmarks, and commerce in the Bearden community. Here's a sneak peek at just some of the historic markers to look out for at the Open Streets event on Sunday:

1. The person after which Sutherland Avenue is named.
Dr. Sutherland

2. The second pilot and first civilian pilot ever to break the sound barrier was from Bearden.
Sound Barrier

3. Knoxville's reputation of moonshine stills could be found heavily rooted in Bearden.

4. Knoxville's first airport was located in Bearden.

5. The armory on Sutherland Avenue dates back much further than most would think.

6. The East Tennessee and Georgia Line hauled goods in and out of Bearden.
Rail Line

7. The original Bearden School was established in 1892.
Bearden School

8.  The first church in Bearden.
Bearden church 

9. Forest Hills Boulevard is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Historic architecture

10. Experts estimate the ginkgo trees first appeared on Earth 150 million years ago, now found along Bearden Village Greenway.
Ginkgo tree

11. Highland Cemetery in Bearden features 18th century tombstones.
18th Century Tombstones

12. Knoxville's prevalent sources of clay made the brick and mortar industry a natural fit for the region.
Clay brick industry 

Even without the walkable convenience of the Open Streets event, these markers are easy for commuters and visitors alike to observe any time. The Bearden area was largely pedestrianized with the 2.1-mile Bearden Village Greenway, which will celebrate its 10-year anniversary this April 2017. The greenway project was quite the undertaking, with nearly 50 organizations and individuals providing easements.

The Bearden Village Greenway links to the western end of Third Creek Greenway and ends at Bearden Elementary School. Along its route, the greenway connects a vast number of restaurants, stores, and offices, as well as major destinations, such as West High School, the Tennessee Army National Guard Armory, Earth Fare, UT's intramural fields, and multiple KAT bus stops.

In addition to bringing a closed street filled with vendors, games and recreation options, the Open Streets Knoxville event on Sunday, October 9, will be a great opportunity to become familiar with the alternative transportation options for the area, to sample food from the vast selection of restaurants, to shop at a variety of stores and, as it just so happens, to learn the area's rich history along the way.

For more information on the Open Streets Knoxville event, visit www.OpenStreetsKnoxville.com. To learn more about Bearden Village Greenway, visit www.knoxvilletn.gov/greenways.
Posted by On 06 October, 2016 at 9:45 AM