KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — In addition to the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon, there are a lot of events going on across the city this weekend. Here’s what you need to know.
Between Thursday, March 30, and Sunday, April 2, the city will host the Big Ears Festival, the Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon, Dogwood Arts’ Chalk Walk, the Smoky Mountain Regional Robotics Competition, a youth basketball tournament, The Eagles in concert, and the second professional home match of One Knox Sporting Club. These events will include several road closures, detours, driving routes and parking capacity challenges.
“This is a great time to live in and visit Knoxville,” says Mayor Indya Kincannon. ”Anyone in downtown and the University of Tennessee campus this weekend should anticipate crowds and delays. My advice is to plan ahead and leave plenty of time to park and get to your destination. It’s going to be a fun weekend.”
Event-related Road Closures
Big Ears Festival Street Party
Closure: 8 a.m. Friday, March 31, to 10 p.m., Saturday, April 1
Depot Avenue between Williams and N. Central streets will be closed to accommodate events at the Southern Railway Station and The Mill & Mine.
Dogwood Arts Chalk Walk
Closure: 7 a.m. – 6 p.m., Saturday, April 1, 2023
These roads will be closed to vehicular traffic prior to and during the event:
- Market Street between Union and Church avenues
- Union Avenue between Walnut and Gay streets
- Clinch Avenue between Walnut and Gay streets
Big Ears Festival Parade
Closure: 11 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, April 1, 2023
The parade will step off at 1 p.m. on Saturday from the staging area at Willow and Patton avenues, under James White Parkway. Roads and on-street parking will be closed along the parade route. The procession will move west on Willow and turn right on N. Central Street, turn left on Jackson Avenue through the Old City, turn right on Gay Street, proceed over the bridge, turn right on Depot and disband into a street party at Depot Avenue and Ogden Street. Depot between Williams and N. Central streets will remain closed until 10 p.m.
Covenant Health Knoxville Marathon Events
Saturday, April 1 to Sunday, April 2
World’s Fair Park acts as the staging area for all marathon events, so the following roads will be closed most of the weekend:
- Clinch Avenue between Henley Street and World’s Fair Park Drive
- World’s Fair Park Drive between Clinch and Grand avenues
Covenant Health 5K & Kids’ Run
4-8:30 p.m. Saturday, April 1, 2023
The Kids’ Run starts at 5 p.m. on Clinch Avenue, goes north on World’s Fair Park Drive, south on 11th Street, makes a loop on Clinch, and circles back to the park. The 5K race begins at 7 p.m. and takes runners from World’s Fair Park on Clinch Avenue through the Fort Sanders neighborhood, utilizing mostly White Avenue for the westbound path and Forest and Grand avenues for the return trip. These roads and those that cross the race route will be closed to through traffic. KPD officers will be at the closures and will allow cars to cross when there is a break between runners.
Covenant Health Marathon and Half Marathon
7:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. Sunday, April 2, 2023
The half and full marathons begin on Clinch Avenue on the World’s Fair Park, connect to Philip Fulmer Way to Neyland Drive, to Kingston Pike through the Sequoyah Hills neighborhood. The route goes along Third Creek Greenway, Tyson Park and through the Fort Sanders neighborhood via Forest Avenue to World’s Fair Park. The half marathon ends there, while the full marathon continues through the Old City into the Fourth & Gill neighborhood, takes a loop through East Knoxville including E. Fifth and Washington Ave and crosses Magnolia Avenue at N. Bertrand. The route picks up Martin Luther King Jr Avenue to E. Summit Hill behind downtown to E. Hill Avenue and James White Parkway, with a turn through South Knoxville via Island Home and Sevier Avenues before heading back to World’s Fair Park via Gay Street through Market Square.
KPD officers will block intersections on the marathon route and allow vehicles to cross during breaks between runners. In addition, closures along Kingston Pike will be limited to one lane, allowing residents attending churches in the neighborhood access to driveways. To see the full marathon and half-marathon routes, click here.
Parking in Knoxville
With all the events in town, parking in Knoxville will be limited. City-owner garages and surface lots offer free parking after 6 p.m. on weeknights and all day on Saturdays and Sundays. Additional free parking on nights and weekends is available in the Dwight Kessel Garage. Find a map of parking lots with real-time availability here or by using the Parkopedia app.
In addition, marathon participants can park in the 11th Street Garage at the corner of Cumberland Avenue. More parking options include the Blackstock lot (exit I-40 at 17th Street) and the Market or Locust Street garages, accessible via exits to downtown.