The People News, a free newspaper serving Cleveland Tennessee (TN) and Bradley County Tennessee (Tn).

Of Bradley County Tn.

JUNE  2003

                            The People News, a free newspaper serving Cleveland and Bradley County Tn.

The People News
Special Report






"School is out for summer"

by Alexandra Edwards

The last day of school in Bradley County is met with mixed emotions by most kids. They are at once, sad to be leaving a loved teacher yet eager to start a summer break with no homework or tests.  Despite the sadness and even before they arrived home they were no doubt singing the mischievous song we all remember so well "No more pencils, no more books, no more teachers dirty looks" ..  "School is out for Summer."

Parents now have the daunting task of keeping their children occupied for the next 10 weeks. At first it will be easy as there were probably lots of activities  planned once the kids were out, but pretty soon you are going to hear the all too familiar words, "I'm bored - there's nothing to do." When this happens do not despair, there are plenty of things to do and places to go, and best of all, most of them can be done right here in and around Cleveland.

Take the kids to the park! We have some great parks here in Cleveland:  For the swimmers there's the swimming pool at Kenneth Tinsley Recreational Park on Keith Street.  It also has a playground, baseball/softball fields, tennis courts and picnic areas.

Alexandra Edwards

For the bikers, load  the kids bikes in the car and go to the ABA approved BMX racing track at Bradley County Recreational Park on Urbane Road where there is also a playground, baseball fields and tennis courts. To get the schedule for the BMX races call  423-476-0582.

For the younger children there is Deer Park on 17th Street which was

renovated in 1998 to be a "Learning Structure" facility. It contains 70 structures for youngsters to explore and expel all that extra energy. There is also a pavilion with picnic facilities. For a more tranquil surrounding, nature loving children will enjoy Fletcher Park on Tennessee Nursery Road. It is a 720-acre nature oriented park with a five mile walking trail, a fishing pond, a 100 year old spring house, rock spring,  and picnic areas.

When the weather is too hot for playing, go to the beach ... no, not Florida! right here in Tennessee, just minutes away in beautiful Ocoee, Polk County. Just take scenic highway 64 into the Cherokee National Forest. There are two beaches along the Ocoee river, one with sand, both safe for bathing,

though small children need to be closely monitored.

As every parent knows, education  needs to be included in some of the summer fun activities.  Learn about the Cherokee Indians and the Trail of Tears at the historical site of Red Clay Park. Take Dalton Pike Rt. 60 and follow the signs to Red Clay Park Road.  There are museum tours, picnic areas and during the first weekend in August,  the "Cherokee Days of Recognition"  will be held. This annual event includes authentic Cherokee crafts and food, Cherokee story telling, music and dance. Admission is free. For more information call (423) 478-0339. Another educational trip could be to the Primitive

Settlement, just 6 miles east of Cleveland on Kinser Road. Together you can see how Early Americans lived  by touring the collection of log cabins, restored and furnished with household and farm items. It will allow your children to browse through Tennessee's past . For more information call (423)-476-5096

Not every day is going to be a sunny day , so indoor activities must also be planned. Museums are a good choice for a visit on a rainy day or those mid-summer days that are just way too hot. The Museum Center at Five Points on Inman Street, downtown Cleveland, would be an ideal opportunity for the family to learn about the civil war and visit Bradley County's past. There are also many summer activities planned at the museum.  call (423) 339-5745  for more details. The Creative Discovery Museum on Chestnut Street, Chattanooga, where grown-ups love to play as much as the kids, is another great place to visit on a rainy day (423) 756-2738         

The Cleveland Public Library, Church Street,  have some fun story time and reading activities for children during the summer. To find out when these have been scheduled call the Cleveland Public Library (423) 472-2163.

For some parents it is not possible to spend the entire school vacation with their children. There are many organized activities for children in Bradley County, call your local Church to find out about summer camps and church camps where the kids will be safe and will have a great time. For parents with a little extra cash to spend and who want their child to experience something completely different to a regular summer camp,  there is a 4 to 5 day "Space Camp" not too far away, in Huntsville, Alabama, for details call 1-800-637-7223 or go to www.spacecamp .com.

What kids don't like ice cream! They will love you when you take them on a trip to Mayfield Dairy Farm in Athens, TN.  They will be taken on a guided tour of the dairy which explains the production cycle of milk and ice cream. The tour can be finished with a fun treat at the ice cream parlor where they can choose their favorite Mayfield  flavor. Plenty of 'wet wipes'  are recommended for this trip. For more information Call (423) 745-2131.

Of course, going out every day can become expensive but staying home can be just as much fun or more so. Children love the simple things in life and the times you spend together as a family, are precious. Here are a few stay at home suggestions the kids are sure to enjoy: Have a picnic ... Spread a blanket on your front lawn and enjoy sandwiches, fresh fruit, chips and soda.  Backyard camping ... Set up a tent in the backyard, roast marshmallows on the grill and sit around and tell ghost stories or sing. Make a garden... Let them have their own flower bed. If space is limited, let the kids help you plant flowers and plants and explain the importance of sunshine, water  and nutrients for proper growth.

The history,  the attractions, all the wonderful breathtaking sights we  have right here on our doorstep, combined with the love shared within each family - the words  "I'm bored" should never be heard.