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State and Local Agencies Announce Nashville Urban Runoff 5K and Water Festival

Wednesday, October 16, 2013 | 10:27am

Inaugural Event to Be Held October 26 at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park

Nashville – The Tennessee Department of Environment and Conservation, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture Division of Forestry’s Urban Riparian Buffer Program, Nashville’s Metro Water Services and the Tennessee Stormwater Association are teaming up to host the inaugural Nashville Urban Runoff 5K and Water Festival on Saturday, October 26.

“We are very excited to host this inaugural 5K in Nashville,” TDEC Deputy Commissioner Shari Meghreblian said. “This is a great educational event that gives participants an opportunity to enjoy a downtown run while viewing green stormwater management practices in the area.”

The 3.1-mile run/walk will begin at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park at 8 a.m. and weave its way past several innovative green stormwater management practices in the downtown area. In addition to viewing examples of green stormwater practices, the race will also parallel and highlight a section of the Cumberland River, Nashville’s most precious water resource for which innovative stormwater design concepts will be key in preserving for future generations. To register online for the 5K, visit by October 25.  Participants that register by October 18 will receive a t-shirt. If you would like to volunteer to help with the event, visit   

Several mascots will also participate in a short mascot challenge, including TDEC’s Ramble the Raccoon, Metro Nashville’s Raindrop and the Tennessee Department of Safety’s Tenny C. Bear. Forestry’s Smokey Bear will be on hand to cheer on runners and to promote his message of wildfire prevention. 

“We’re proud to be a sponsor of this event to help draw attention to water issues and the role that forests, including trees in our urban environment, can play in controlling stormwater and improving water quality,” Agriculture assistant commissioner and state forester Jere Jeter said.

The Urban Runoff 5K will lead to the Water Festival, a post-race, family festival taking place on Bicentennial Mall’s lawn from 8 a.m. until noon. The festival will celebrate clean water and green infrastructure and will feature kid-friendly activities and hands-on educational opportunities including TDEC’s Aquatic Critters booth, Tennessee State Parks’ Birds of Prey and Junior Ranger programs, a large bouncy castle and slide. Booths will include Metro, Cumberland River Compact, Hands on Nashville and the Tennessee Stormwater Association.


WHO:               TDEC, Tennessee Division of Forestry’s Urban Riparian Buffer Program,  Metro Water Services, Tennessee Stormwater Association


WHAT:             Urban Runoff 5K and Water Festival


WHEN:            Saturday, October 26

                        8 a.m. until noon - Water Quality Festival

                        7:45 a.m. - Mascot Challenge

                        8 a.m. - Race Start

                        9 a.m. - Awards Ceremony


WHERE:          Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park

                         600 James Robertson Parkway, Nashville


The Division of Forestry will present potted tree seedlings to the first place winners in each category. Proceeds from the event will benefit Hands on Nashville’s Waterway Recovery and Restoration Program.

“This event highlights both the innovative infrastructure changes and the individual actions that have, together, improved water quality in the Cumberland River,” Metro Water Services Director Scott Potter said. “From installing green roofs to picking up litter, everyone plays an important part in keeping our water clean.”

Additional sponsors for the event include Freeman Enterprises, Metro Public Works Beautification Program, U.S. Forest Service, The Nature Conservancy, AMEC, Hawkins Partners, Tennessee Environmental Council, Hands on Nashville, Richland Watershed Alliance, Cumberland River Compact, SoundForest and Whites Creek Watershed Alliance.


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