KINGSPORT – In an effort to provide visitors expanded opportunities to enjoy the parks offerings, officials with Bays Mountain Park have announced extended hours for the month of October.‚ Beginning Monday, October 6, Bays Mountain Park will close daily at 8:00 p.m.
Driven in part by community request and an increase in visitors enjoying the colors of the season, extending park hours will offer park members, tourists, and local supporters additional opportunity for greater sight-seeing, hiking, mountain bike riding, and a variety of other leisure opportunities traditionally enjoyed on a typical visit.
Extending park hours during longer daylight times has long been a goal, said Park Manager Ken Childress.‚ Weve realized for a long time that visitors would enjoy greater access to the park if we could find a way to make it happen, so we are pleased to be able to take this first step and hopefully see a positive response from those who have supported us so well.
In recent years, Bays Mountain Park has been a popular destination for trail runners and mountain biking enthusiasts alike.‚ With nearly 40 miles of trails, the park is ideal for those seeking to make outdoor recreation a part of their health and wellness initiatives or to simply enjoy the peace and serenity that a woodland or lakeside setting offers.
Facilities such as the Nature Center, Herpetarium and Farmstead Museum will still close at 5:00 p.m. on the weekdays.
Bays Mountain Park is ranked as one of Tennessees Top 50 Most Visited Attractions, according to the State of Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, and welcomes over 150,000 visitors annually. It is one of the nations largest city-owned parks, boasting a 44-acre lake and nearly 40 miles of hiking trails across its 3,550 acres of mountains and forests. The parks attractions include a state-of-the-art planetarium, wildlife habitats specializing in species native to Tennessee, an interactive nature center, a ropes course with zip lines, and trails for mountain bikes, day hikers, and backpackers.