#Dog Take – Lila’s take on Downtown Knoxville

“Downtown”: It’s a word I hear my humans talk about a lot. New development…new coffee shops… new this and new that. What usually catches my ear are the food festivals that I seem to hear about weekly that happen at this “downtown.” My humans even went to the biscuit festival a few weekends ago, but I had to watch my figure, so no biscuits for me.

Well, this week my humans finally decided to take me to see this so called downtown. I honestly didn’t think much of the field trip before we went. I had my usual afternoon nap, loaded up in the car, and figured I would pacify my humans by strolling around the streets for a bit. I actually figured they were just taking me so that people would aw over me, want to pet me, and so forth. But alas, I am always up for a nice Spring outing, so to this “downtown” we went.

I immediately fell in love with downtown when the first place we came to was filled with dog friendly gifts and goodies. We of course had to go in, and somehow I managed to talk my human into a few treats, and a new UT bandana of course.

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We continued walking to what my human explained as Market Square. There are places to eat everywhere you look, and if you put your nose down, you can definitely score some leftovers that have been dropped (not that I know from experience). Apparently Market Square hasn’t always looked as it does today. Market Square has been a large part of Knoxville’s revitalization effort. It was neat to meet other dogs there, greet friendly faces, and maybe sneak in a few snacks along the way.

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We found some water fountains I tried out, walked along sidewalks, and enjoyed a nice warm afternoon. My human was explaining the importance of infrastructure, and how that is what my humans love to see. My human explained that when she can walk around and see the impact new infrastructure has on a community, that is what makes the day in and day out effort at the office worth it. I don’t necessarily understand what infrastructure means, but if it means food scraps, dog stores, and fountains, I like infrastructure.

We walked a little further to a place called “Marble Alley,” which I discovered was the reason for this outing.


Marble Alley is a new mixed-use development in the heart of downtown that apparently my humans helped do some of the design work. My humans worked with the City on the streetscape project for Marble Alley, which included parallel parking, landscaping, lighting, and some sidewalks adjacent to Marble Alley. I am glad that I was able to take advantage of these new streetscapes and roam around with my humans on such a sunny day. The City has worked hard to make downtown beautiful, and it was a fun day seeing some of the work that has been done.

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We finished our field trip by visiting the Dog Park downtown, which is right across the street from Marble Alley. I met some friends, ran around a bit, but in all honesty I was ready for an afternoon nap, so back to the office we went.

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To sum up my first trip “downtown,” I would say if you get a chance, head downtown this weekend and enjoy the revitalization that Knoxville has worked hard to build. I am a strong believer that I live in one of the most beautiful cities in the country, and I’m proud to be a part of city that works hard to make Knoxville beautiful. If you want a few ideas of things to do Downtown, I did a little research on my own and included some links. Post a comment if you have other suggestions as to what great things to do Downtown.

Visit Knoxville

Downtown Knoxville

Outdoor Knoxville