COOKEVILLE – Splashing in the fountain at Dogwood Park. Feeding the ducks at Cane Creek Park. Climbing aboard the caboose at the Cookeville Depot. Watching a show at the Cookeville Performing Arts Center. Taking a fitness class at the Cane Creek Recreation Center.
The list goes on and on – three decades’ worth of leisure time activities and events offered by the City of Cookeville’s Department of Leisure Services and Public Facilities.
To mark that milestone, the Cookeville History Museum (also under the Leisure Services umbrella) will be opening an exhibit, “Cookeville Leisure Services: 30 Years of Making the Good Life Better,” Saturday with a reception from 1-3 p.m.
“We’re celebrating 30 years – from 1987 to 2017,” Beth Thompson, Cookeville museums manager, said. “A huge part of Leisure Services, of course, is Dogwood Park and Cane Creek Park, but there’s so much more to the department. We hope this exhibit will help citizens connect the dots on everything Leisure Services has been doing.”
How is Leisure Services “making the good life better” in Cookeville? Exhibit specialist Pam Philpot said it’s the variety.
“This department offers wonderful classes, museums, plays, concerts, sports and much more,” she said. “And our maintenance department takes care of the grounds, making Cookeville such a beautiful place. They do so much.”
What’s the importance of having a Leisure Services department?
“It’s quality of life,” Thompson said. “You look at Cookeville, and the quality of life we have is comparable to cities of much larger size. Leisure Services contributes so much to that.”
Philpot added, “There’s something for everyone.”
The exhibit, which continues through Sept. 30, will feature department photos, uniforms, awards, facility blueprints and numerous other Leisure Services memorabilia. Staff interviews and a compilation video will be shown as well.
“We’ve gone through many, many scrapbooks and have something from pretty much every division of Leisure Services,” Philpot said. “This exhibit is really going to showcase what we’re about.”
The Cookeville History Museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at 40 E. Broad St. Admission is free.