Museum of Appalachia could get an RV park after rezoning is OK’d

Museum of Appalachia visitors might soon be getting a place to stay overnight right next to the museum.

Norris City Council members Monday night unanimously approved on first reading an ordinance to rezone about 17.5 acres adjacent to the museum for commercial use (C2), which city officials have said would accommodate construction of an RV park/campground on the property.

That property, along with the land upon which the museum sits, is now zoned S1 (Scenic), which would not allow the RV park. The acreage is between the museum and Scruggs Cemetery Lane, behind a stone wall, on land the museum has used for overflow parking during special events. It sits back from Andersonville Highway, and the RV park would be accessed only through the museum’s entrance road.

Although there was no mention specifically during the meeting of the RV park, and no plan has yet been submitted to the city for approval, city officials have been told that the founding family of the museum wants to use the two tracts they own connecting to the museum property for the park and campground, which could include cabins.

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Ribbon-cutting kicks off Norris Lake trail network

Anderson County Mayor Terry Frank cuts the ribbon on Friday (April 9) to open the Norris Lake Area Trail System. From left: Keith Montgomery (Big Ridge State Park manager), Chuck Morris (trail steering committee member), Clay Guerry (TVA), Jason Bailey (Union County mayor), David Bowling (TVA), Frank, E.L. Mor- ton (Campbell County mayor) Veronica Greear (Norris Dam State Park manager) and Dennis Yankee (TVA). - G. Chambers Williams III
The newly designated Norris Lake Area Trail System officially opened for business with a ribbon-cutting last Friday at Norris Dam State Park.

Anderson County Mayor Terry Frank cut the ribbon next to a picnic shelter on the east side of the park where the first sign has been erected to signify the start of the 87-mile system of trails.

The trail system designation is an effort by the nonprofit Norris Lake Project Team “to preserve the natural beauty and conserve the natural resources of the Norris Lake Watershed area for the benefit of the residents and visitors to the area, while assisting the local governments combat the deterioration of natural resources in the surrounding communities,” according to its website (

It’s essentially a marketing effort to boost awareness and use of the combined network of state, county, city and Tennessee Valley Authority trails that surround Norris Lake.

According to the group, the Norris Lake Area Trail System consists of 87 total miles of hiking, biking and horseback riding trails “adjacent to the shoreline of Norris Lake within 15 miles of each other.”

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Clinton’s ‘Mosaic’ weekend

Festival brings busy crowd to downtown area

Visitors crowded the street and sidewalks during Saturday’s Mosaic art festival on Market Street in downtown Clinton. - G. Chambers Williams III
For the first time since the pandemic struck in March 2020, Clinton blocked off Market Street last Saturday and a crowd gathered for the downtown area’s “Mosaic” street art festival.

There were street vendors, food trucks, food booths, face-painting and other activities not seen since before the shutdown, and people were clearly enjoying being out on the street again.

The event was centered around artwork created by students in 19 Anderson County schools that was on display in the windows of shops on Market Street.

Merchants hosted the event, decorated their stores and opened their doors to the crowds, who held up pretty well until rain finally moved in around midday.

The event was part of the first Anderson County Art Trail, which also included special events and live performances during the “Mosaic” event all day Saturday in the downtown area.

Students’ art was on display and available for sale, said Art Trail coordinator Alison Greenhouse, who teaches art at Norris and Fairview elementary schools.

The art was provided by students from kindergarten through 12th grade, and each school also contributed a “collaborative” three-by-three-foot piece of art designed to represent the work of all the art students in the participating schools, Greenhouse said.

Sixteen Anderson County Schools and the three Clinton elementary schools signed up to participate, and the downtown merchants were looking forward to hosting the event, Katherine Birkbeck, owner of the Spindle Tree on Market Street, said in earlier announcements about the special event.