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Eastern Middle Tennessee Shines as a Destination – Part 1: Natural Wonders

We’re preaching to the choir here, we realize. As a REALTOR®, an EMTAR member, and a vital part of our Eastern Middle Tennessee community, you already know that our region is one of the most inviting spots in the Volunteer State (and beyond) for residents, relocating businesses, and vacationing tourists.

Still, we are so immersed in raising families, providing excellent service to property buyers and sellers, and otherwise making a positive difference in our community that it can be easy to take for granted some of the many ways our area shines.

Starting this week, we’ll provide a few quick highlights (among many more) that you might want to share with folks in your network if and when they ask for a quick rundown of what makes our little patch of Tennessee such a special place.

Part 1 is Natural Wonders. In our area—which we’re defining as “in or very near Wilson County”—they include:

Old Hickory Lake

This storied waterway that brims with recreational opportunities dips into our part of Tennessee at points including Cedar Creek, whose marina on Saundersville Road is home to a grill, kayak and boat rentals, lakeside entertainment, and more.

Cedars of Lebanon State Park

This jewel of a park is named for eastern red cedar trees found throughout the area. The trees reminded early American settlers of the biblical cedar forests that thrived across Mount Lebanon in what is now the Mediterranean area. Cedars of Lebanon became a state park in 1955. The 1,139-acre park has 117 campsites equipped with picnic tables and grills, and electric and water hookups. A modern group lodge, open year-round for organized groups, has a total sleeping capacity of 80 people.

Vesta Cedar Glade Natural Area

This 150-acre natural area sits in the southwest corner of Cedars of Lebanon State Forest. The natural area is cooperatively managed with the Tennessee Division of Forestry, with about 60 acres of the property included in the state forest. Vesta features cedar glades, barrens, and cedar-hardwood forest communities. It is a flat landscape with exposed limestone outcropping and sinkhole features that are characteristic of the karst topography that influences cedar glade ecology.

Long Hunter State Park

This 2,600-acre gem offers a variety of recreational activities including fishing and hiking and has two boat launch ramps on J. Percy Priest Lake, a group camp, a backcountry campsite, meeting facility and a visitor center. The more than 20 miles of hiking trails provide a variety of terrain and habitats and range from pleasant strolls to longer jaunts for the more adventurous. Trails include a self-guided, paved arboretum trail and the five and a half -mile Volunteer Trail that follows the lakeshore.

Robinson Family Park

This 11-acre park, dedicated in 2017, was donated to the City of Mt. Juliet by Mr. and Mrs. Bill and Phyllis Robinson of Robinson Properties. It hosts a ½-mile wraparound hiking trail and outdoor fitness equipment. Girl Scout Troop 425 worked hard to turn the park into a Certified Wildlife Habitat. (The entrance is right behind Dairy Queen on Mt. Juliet Road.)

Don Fox Park / Wading Pool

Operated by the City of Lebanon, this park includes four pavilions with grills, power, and picnic tables; 61 other picnic tables throughout the park, along with about 17 other grills; a wading pool; and a walking track.

A few other area options include (click the name to learn more):

Charlie Daniels Park and Planet Playground

Ethan Page Park (18-hole disc golf course)

Eagle Park (a bicycle park especially for young cyclists)

Sellars Farm Archaeological Area (part of Long Hunter)

Rock-star REALTORS®

You didn’t think we’d leave out our favorite “natural wonders,” did you? (Hint: you!)

Chartered in 1969, our Association’s 1,300+ REALTORS® are a proud part of the 36,000+ members of Tennessee REALTORS® and of the 1.5 million+ members of NAR, all working to serve the public and protect the rights of America’s property owners. EMTAR members are known not only for their unmatched real estate excellence and high ethical standards, but also for being generous, hospitable, others-focused, loyal, hardworking, and eager to help wherever and whenever help is needed.

In sum, these are only part 1 of a sampling of the reasons why we love being part of Eastern Middle Tennessee—and why so many other folks continue to discover all of what makes this such an inviting place to live, work, play, and make a difference.