News & Information

Ijams Nature Center Announces New COVID-19 Policies and Procedures Effective July 1, 2020

For your safety and the staff’s, and in accordance with City of Knoxville’s Emergency Executive Order No. 19, Ijams Nature Center requires all staff and visitors to wear masks while inside the Visitor Center. The exhibit hall and hallway gallery will remain closed.

 

Masks are optional outdoors.

Please postpone your visit if you are feeling ill. All Ijams staff are required to do a health screening prior to coming to work.

 

Ijams reserves the right to limit the number of people in the Visitor Center to maintain proper physical distancing. Please be mindful of capacity limitations when coming to the Visitor Center as a family or group. The wait time may be longer for larger groups.

These policies and procedures will remain in place until further notice.

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You Can Help

If you are able, please make a gift to Ijams to ensure that the nature center can recover from the unforeseen setback of COVID-19 and jump back into the programming and other work that means so much to members, visitors, and the community.

 

Thank you for your patience and understanding. Stay safe and well! 

New Ijams Nature Center Programs Offer Safe Summer Fun for All Ages

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 15, 2020
CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org

Knoxville, Tenn.—Join Ijams Nature Center for safe summer fun! The nature center is offering new programs, from rock scrambling and creek walks for families, to bird watching for beginners, introduction to bouldering and art programs for all ages.

“We may not be able to gather in large groups, but we can still come together in ways that allow us to learn and enjoy the outdoors,” Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker said.

“These programs are perfect for families who can explore together as a unit, or adults and older teens who are able to observe distancing guidelines and other practices to limit their exposure.”

Space for all programs is limited to ensure physical distancing and Ijams is following safety and sanitization protocols.

In addition to scheduled programs, Ijams naturalists will rove the grounds on Saturdays.

 

The following programs are listed on the Ijams website’s Event Calendar; more will be added. To learn more or to register, visit the calendar at ijams.org.

  • Intro to Bouldering (Adults and Families; Ages 6+)
    June 16, 9-11A
    June 23, 9-11A
    June 30, 9-11A
     

  • Nature Senses (Children 2-4 With Caregivers)
    June 16, 10-11A (SOLD OUT)
    June 18, 10-11A
     

  • Ijams Insect Safari (Families with Children 5-13)
    June 16, 1:30-3:30P
    June 18, 1:30-3:30P
     

  • Bird Watching for Beginners (Adults and Families; Ages 6+)
    June 18, 9-11A
     

  • Art and Mindfulness in Nature (Adults; Teens)
    June 18, 10A-Noon
    June 19, 3-5P

 

  • Toll Creek Walk (Families with Children 6+)
    June 18, 12:30-2:30P
    June 19, 10A-Noon and 1-3P
    June 26, 1-3P

 

  • Nature Arts & Crafts (Families with Children 5-13)
    June 18, 3-5P
    June 20, 1;30-3:30P

 

  • Off-Trail Adventures (Adults and Families; Ages 6+)
    June 19, 9-11:11:30A
     

  • Creature Feature (All Ages)
    Saturdays, 10-10:30A and 1-1:30P
     

  • Behind the Scenes Animal Program (All Ages)
    June 20, 11A-Noon
     

  • Birds Say the Darndest Things (Adults and Families; Ages 6+)
    June 25, 9-11A
     

  • Rock Scrambling Adventure (Adults and Families; Ages 6+)
    June 26, 9-11:30A

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Ijams Nature Center Expands Visitor Center Hours

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: June 3, 2020

CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org

Knoxville, Tenn.—Ijams Nature Center has expanded the Visitor Center restroom and limited-access gift shop daily hours, now 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Other hours:

Visitor Center Plaza pop-up tent  for information and concessions): Saturday and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

 

River Sports Outfitters paddle rentals and The Outpost concessions at Mead's Quarry: Monday-Saturday 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday Noon to 7 p.m.

Mead's Quarry restrooms: Daily 8 a.m.-8 p.m.

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Ijams Nature Center Opens Quarry Swimming Area, Paddling Rentals

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 27, 2020

CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org

Knoxville, Tenn.—Ijams Nature Center has opened the swimming area at Mead's Quarry in phase two of the City/County reopening plan, which went into effect May 26. 

River Sports Outfitters (RSO) began offering paddle rentals on the lake Memorial Day weekend. Hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon to 7 p.m. Sunday. Rentals will close due to inclement weather and will be announced on the RSO Facebook page at @RiverSportsOutfitters.

 

The Ijams Outpost, which offers concessions, beer and other items, will mirror RSO hours. Restrooms at the quarry remain open from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m.

 

The Visitor Center restrooms and limited-contact gift shop/concessions purchases continue to be open daily from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. All restrooms will close for short periods at set times each day to allow facilities to be cleaned and sanitized. During those times, the front lobby of the Visitor Center also will be closed.

Navitat is open Monday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Thursday-Saturday 11 a.m.-5 p.m. and Sunday noon to 5 p.m. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are by appointment only.

You are encouraged to wear masks when entering the Visitor Center and while passing other people on the grounds.

 

Ijams remains committed to the health and safety of visitors and staff, and will be evaluating reopening policies, procedures and hours; changes may be implemented at any time.

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Ijams Nature Center Sets Limited Building Hours Starting May 9

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 7, 2020

CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org

 

Knoxville, Tenn.—Ijams Nature Center will open the Visitor Center restrooms and offer limited-contact gift shop and concessions purchases, including disposable surgical masks, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday, May 9-10.

 

The Visitor Center restrooms will be open daily; the gift shop will close on Monday and Tuesday, May 11-12, and then will be open daily.

 

Mead's Quarry restrooms will be open daily from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Concessions will be available from The Outpost at the quarry from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

 

All restrooms will close for short periods at set times each day to allow facilities to be cleaned and sanitized. During those times, the front lobby of the Visitor Center also will be closed.

 

You are encouraged to wear masks when entering the Visitor Center and while passing other people on the grounds.

 

Ijams is committed to the health and safety of visitors and staff, and will be evaluating reopening policies, procedures and hours; changes may be implemented at any time.

 

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Ijams Nature Center Plans Limited Reopening of Facilities May 9

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: May 1, 2020

CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org

Knoxville, Tenn.—Ijams Nature Center will begin a slow, measured reopening of its facilities on Saturday, May 9, in keeping with Phase 1 of the City of Knoxville/Knox County reopening plan.

 

The Visitor Center will open partially to allow people to interact with front desk staff, who will be stationed at a desk protected by a Plexiglas barrier just inside the front entry to the gift shop.

 

Visitor Center and Mead’s Quarry bathrooms will open with increased sanitization protocols. These restrooms will be closed for cleaning at regularly scheduled times throughout the day.

 

At this time, the Mead's Quarry Lake swimming area will remain closed.

 

Ijams’ partner, Navitat Knoxville, plans to reopen on May 9; for information, please visit the company’s website at navitatknoxville.com. Ijams will communicate plans for paddle and bike rentals through River Sports Outfitters when they become available.

 

Trails have been and will continue to remain open daily from 8 a.m. until dusk. Ijams asks that visitors bring and wear protective face coverings (masks, bandanas, buffs, etc.). If you choose not to wear one continually, you are encouraged to cover your face when passing others on the trails.

 

All visitors are required to wear a face covering when entering the Visitor Center or interacting with staff. This is for everyone's protection as Ijams participates in the cautious reopening of this community.

 

If you are able, please make a donation or become a member of Ijams to help sustain this nonprofit nature center. Donations can be made at one of the donation boxes on the grounds; memberships and donations can be made by mail or online. Thank you for your support during this difficult time, and for ensuring Ijams remains a safe, wonderful place for all to enjoy.​

 

Ijams Nature Center is a nonprofit, 315-acre educational nature center for all ages, abilities and walks of life. Ijams’ mission is to encourage stewardship of the natural world by providing an urban greenspace for people to learn about and enjoy the outdoors through engaging experiences. Located just three miles from downtown Knoxville, Ijams features 12 miles of hiking and mixed-use trails, a public access river dock, swimming, boating, biking and more. 

 

The center offers hundreds of educational programs annually, from school field trips and off-site programs to on-site outdoor and classroom education programs that focus on topics from birding and wildflowers to yoga hikes, cooking classes and art programs. The Ijams grounds and trails are open every day from 8 a.m. until dusk. For more information, visit https://www.ijams.org.

 

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Ijams Nature Center Updates COVID-19 Plan

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 7, 2020

CONTACT: Ijams Executive Director Amber Parker, +1865-577-4717 ext. 118 or aparker@ijams.org.

Knoxville, Tenn.—In what Ijams Nature Center feels is in the best interest and safety of visitors, staff, and the community at large, effective immediately, all facilities at Ijams Nature Center, including the Visitor Center, Visitor Center bathrooms, and Mead’s Quarry bathrooms, are closed through May 10.

 

In addition, the swimming area at Mead's Quarry Lake is closed through May 10. The swimming area does not offer enough space for proper social distancing, which is critical to slow the spread of COVID-19 in our community.

 

All in-person, scheduled programs and events have been cancelled. Ijams Nature Center also has limited parking to reduce crowding.

Please respect these decisions, which were made in compliance with the Safer at Home Order and with your health in mind. 

 

Ijams Nature Center trails remain open. You are invited to hike, bike, and run on the trails by yourself or with your immediate family/housemates, and enjoy the benefits the beauty and solace of nature have on your physical and emotional well-being during these uncertain times. As a reminder, please allow an appropriate amount of distance between yourself and others, wash your hands often, and stay home if you feel sick.

 

The staff of Ijams will continue to watch and evaluate the COVID-19 situation and its impact on the nature center, and will make additional updates as needed.

 

If you are able, please consider making a gift to Ijams to ensure that the nature center can recover from this unforeseen setback and jump back into the programming that means so much to the community Ijams serves.

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