If you’ve never heard of RiverRocks, this is the year to change that. October marks the 6th year of the festival in the Scenic City, which celebrates the outdoors with a variety of events throughout the month. The signature athletic events attract recreational and elite athletes to take advantage of all Chattanooga has to offer, while music and film festivals offer plenty of entertainment.
With nearly a month’s worth of activities on the calendar, it would be tough to take advantage of everything RiverRocks has to offer. But here are 8 of the highlights of the ever-growing festival.
1. Reel Rock Tour
October 16, IMAX Theater Downtown Chattanooga
The Reel Rock Tour brings the film Valley Uprising to the IMAX Movie Theater on Broad Street on October 16. The event starts with socializing at 6pm followed by the film at 7:30pm. You won’t want to miss the highly acclaimed tribute to Yosemite’s larger-than-life climbing revolution during the 1970s, and inside profiles of the climbers who put the sport on the cultural map.
2. Triple Crown Bouldering Competition
October 17, Stone Fort Bouldering Field
Head to Stone Fort for the Triple Crown Bouldering Competition, where you can climb, watch other climbers, or hang out and browse the vendor booths at one of the best gathering of rock climbers in the region. Enjoy music, food and some spectacular climbing, whether you’re on the rock yourself or watching some of the best in the country.
3. Seven Bridges Marathon, Half Marathon and 5K
October 18, Downtown Chattanooga
The Seven Bridges Marathon will begin in Renaissance Park on the North Shore of Chattanooga. Crossing the Market Street Bridge, the race will lead runners on a scenic tour of downtown Chattanooga’s bridges and riverside neighborhoods.
The half marathon course (13.1 miles) will accompany the full marathon (26.2 miles) over three bridges, splitting off at the Chattanooga Food Bank on the Tennessee Riverwalk. While the half will return over the Walnut Street Bridge and finish in Coolidge Park, the full marathon will continue over three more bridges (the C.B. Robinson, Thrasher, and Riverpark Bridges, respectively) before returning downtown to cross Walnut for the Coolidge Park finish.
October 24, Ross’ Landing
The ChattaJack31 is the flat-water paddling endurance event of the year, with more than 300 paddlers on boards and boats leave in a mass start at Ross’ Landing. The parade of paddlers finishes 31 miles later on the other side of the Tennessee River Gorge at Hale’s Bar Marina in Nickajack Lake. The popular event filled to capacity in May and it’s quite a sight to see. Sign up early if you want to participate next year.
5. RiverRocks Finale
October 24, Coolidge Park
The perfect way to end this month-long outdoor celebration is to head over to Coolidge Park for the RiverRocks Finale on Saturday at 4pm. There will be live music from a number of talented acts, plenty of food from local food trucks, and lots of fun activities including yoga, slack lining, and volleyball. It’s perfect for the whole family. If you can only make it to one RiverRocks event this month, this might be the one to circle on the calendar.
Photo Credit: RiverRocks, Rock/Creek, Cameron Flanders, Jeff Bartlett, High Point Climbing and Fitness, Reel Rock 9, Carlo Nasisse, Gary Gelmis, ChattaJack31, Ry Glover