ROCKY TOP – The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation (TDEC) has announced plans for a learning playscape, a new year-round outdoor recreation feature, at Norris Dam State Park.

 The nature-based playscape will combine the fun of a play area with the opportunity to learn and appreciate the outdoors and natural environment. Research shows that children thrive on many levels when they are provided outdoor education. Norris Dam State Park’s playscape will help children connect with nature with a hands-on experience.

 “We always look for the best ways to serve our parks visitors, and we are excited about this feature at Norris Dam State Park,” said Greer Tidwell, TDEC’s deputy commissioner for Conservation. “The playscape will be available throughout the year, and we look forward to having families enjoy this new asset.”

 Work is expected to begin this year on the site. The project has been approved by the State Building Commission and will replace a swimming pool. The pool closure was announced in December 2021.

 Tennessee State Parks officials held a public meeting at the park to discuss ideas for recreation proposals for the park, its mission, and community. Park management and staff also contributed their input.

 Tennessee State Parks determined that investing funds into a desired and fiscally responsible outdoor recreation feature for use year-round is the best path to maximize the park’s benefit to the community and the investments made on behalf of taxpayers.

 Norris Dam State Park sits on more than 4,000 acres at Norris Reservoir, with more than 800 miles of shoreline. The park offers recreational boating, skiing, and fishing, a fully equipped marina with a boat ramp available to the public, 19 historic cabins and 10 deluxe cabins.  

 For information on new attractions at other Tennessee State Parks, please visit the TDEC newsroom web page.