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Big Hill Pond State Park and Davis Bridge Battle Site to Host Living History Day

Thursday, September 20, 2012 | 10:38am

Event Will Help Commemorate Tennessee State Parks’ 75th Anniversary

POCAHONTAS, Tenn. – The year 2012 marks Tennessee State Parks’ 75th Anniversary, and to help commemorate this important milestone, Big Hill Pond State Park will host a Living History Day at the Davis Bridge battle site on Saturday, Sept. 29, beginning at 9 a.m. (CST).

Free and open to the public, cannons firing will kick-off the Living History Day program, followed by a hike led by living history interpreters across the battle site. The short hike, about one mile across grass fields, will include several stops for interpretive explanations of the battle. After the hike, guests are welcome to visit the Living History Civil War Camp, where there will be rifle demonstrations, re-enactors and interpretive programs about life in the camp.

“We are very excited to celebrate Tennessee State Parks’ 75th Anniversary this year,” said Park Manager Jim Harrison.  “Living History Day is a great time to learn about the Davis Bridge battle site and the perfect opportunity to find out what Big Hill Pond State Park has to offer.” 

The Tennessee State Parks system was established through legislation in 1937, and those laws – with modifications and additions over the years – remain the framework for park operations today.  As in most states, Tennessee began in cooperation with federal programs that instigated individual parks. Later, Depression era recovery programs gave a boost to the idea and the possibility of creating parks. The Civilian Conservation Corps and Works Progress Administration worked on land conservation, but also delved further into the actual planning and construction of what would become the first of 54 Tennessee State Parks.

Today, there is a state park within an hour’s drive of just about anywhere in Tennessee.  A 2009 University of Tennessee study highlights the positive economic impacts that state parks provide local communities, particularly in rural areas of the state.  The study found that for every dollar spent on trips to Tennessee State Parks, an additional $1.11 of economic activity was generated throughout the state.  When the direct and indirect expenditures were combined, the impact of Tennessee State Parks to the state’s economy was $1.5 billion in total industry output, supporting more than 18,600 jobs.

“Our vision statement highlights the inherent value of our natural environment, along with the value of the many physical reminders of Tennessee’s past,” added Deputy Commissioner Brock Hill.  “Tennessee’s state parks have played such an important role in our history, and they play a critical role in our health and quality of life, which will benefit Tennesseans well into the future.”

Tennessee’s state parks deliver a rich fabric of natural landscapes, wild places, preserved ecologies, outdoor recreational opportunities and protected historic scenes and resources – together representing the heritage of Tennessee in the landscape.

Tennessee's 54 state parks and 82 state natural areas offer diverse natural, recreational and cultural experiences for individuals, families or business and professional groups.  State park features range from pristine natural areas to 18-hole championship golf courses.  For a free brochure about Tennessee State Parks, call toll free at 1-888-867-2757. For upcoming events in connection with the 75th Anniversary of Tennessee State Parks, please visit the state parks website at www.tnstateparks.com.

In commemoration of the 75th Anniversary of Tennessee State Parks, the Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation launched an innovative new microsite at www.tnstateparks75.com. Established in partnership with the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development, the microsite displays Tennessee State Parks’ rich heritage and showcases the many outdoor adventures awaiting state park visitors through rich media and dynamic content.

Big Hill Pond State Park lies in the southwestern part of McNairy County and encompasses approximately 5,000 acres of magnificent timberland and hardwood bottom land. Cypress Creek and the Tuscumbia River border the property. Several oxbow lakes and sloughs add to the waterway. The flood plain adjacent to both the Tuscumbia River and Cypress Creek contains small oxbow lakes and swamp areas which are desirable habitat for waterfowl, wildlife and fishing. For more information about Big Hill Pond State Park, please visit www.tnstateparks.com/BigHillPond or call (731) 645-7967. 

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Press Releases | Environment & Conservation