TVA Visitor Centers Opening for 2019 Season on April 6
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. — Spring has officially arrived and the Tennessee Valley Authority will be opening visitor centers on Sat., April 6, at its first dam, its tallest dam, its longest dam, its pumped storage facility and several other facilities around the Tennessee Valley.
The public can visit centers at TVA’s tallest dam, Fontana, which towers 480 feet and forms part of the Appalachian Trail, near Bryson City, N.C.; Norris, TVA’s first dam that was completed in 1936 along with a planned community that became a national model, near Knoxville; and Kentucky Dam, TVA’s longest dam at more than 8,800 feet that forms the largest reservoir in the eastern United States, near Paducah, Ky. The pumped storage facility near Chattanooga, Tenn., has beautiful views of the gorge and miles of bike trails to enjoy when you learn about storing hydropower in a man-made lake.
In addition, informative display panels at Wilson and Guntersville dams in Alabama are accessible by the public year-round, as are visitor centers at South Holston and Fort Patrick Henry dams in northeast Tennessee. Each offers information about TVA history, how TVA generates electricity and how it manages the Tennessee River and its tributaries.
The newest opportunity to learn more about TVA’s activities is at the overlook of Douglas Dam. Displays about Douglas Dam and Tennessee’s second oldest town, Dandridge, were installed over the winter.
TVA retiree volunteers serve as guides at Raccoon Mountain, Fontana, Norris and Kentucky to answer questions about TVA, the history of the facilities and the surrounding areas.
- Fontana Dam, located off N.C. Highway 28 near the Tennessee border, is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily through August and 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. September and October.
- Norris Dam, located off Interstate 75, Exit 122 north of Knoxville, is open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Saturday, and 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, April through November
- Raccoon Mountain/Laurel Point, located off Raccoon Mountain Road near U.S. Highway 64/72 west of Chattanooga, is open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. through October and 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. November through March.
- Kentucky Dam, located off U.S. Highway 62 east coming from Paducah, Ky., or west from Clarksville, Tenn., operates 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., from April through October.
- Wilson Dam, located off Reservation Road in Muscle Shoals, is accessible year-round.
- Guntersville Dam, located off Snow Point Rd. (CR-50), is accessible year-around.
- South Holston Dam, located on South View Dam Drive, Bristol, Tenn., is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. April through October; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. November through March.
- Fort Patrick Henry, located off Interstate 81, Exit 59, is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. April through October; and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. November through March.
- Melton Hill, located off I-40, Exit 364 near Lenoir City, Tenn., is accessible year-round.
- Douglas Dam, located off of I-40, Exit 407, is accessible year-round.
Visitor centers close for major holidays and in times of severe weather. TVA’s website frequently posts closure information.
To learn more about TVA and its 86-year mission of service to the Tennessee Valley, click here.
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