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Old 05-12-2014, 05:06 AM   #1
cccolin OP
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Joined: Jul 2013
Location: South Carolina
Oddometer: 806
Who's near or sorta near Knoxville? Tell me about it.

Hey guys,

the lady and I are moving to Knoxville in either August or Jan, for job opportunities for both of us, and to be closer to my family, as I have some nephews now, and my mom's getting up there. What's to know about the area (other than being near the Dragon, of course ;) )

Cheers!
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Old 05-12-2014, 05:13 AM   #2
TXAg
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Location: Greater Ocoee Metro Area
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If you enjoy the outdoors there is plenty to keep you busy, I live about 55 miles south of the Knoxville Airport. Plenty of great riding, aside from the Dragon. If you like or might like rafting the Ocoee is down here by me, it was the site of kayaking for the '96 Olympics. Pigeon Forge and Dollywood close by to take the kids also have an year-round indoor water park. My favorite place in Knoxville is Mast General store in downtown.


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Old 05-12-2014, 05:26 AM   #3
cccolin OP
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welp, no kids, but do love the outdoors.
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Old 05-12-2014, 07:16 AM   #4
Mossy_Crk
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Knoxville is a great town. It's a bit spread out so you don't get the city feel except in downtown. The people here can be super friendly and will often reply if you say hi while out in town. The "southern charm" might be a little watered down with all the transplants but if you speak up, most folks will start smiling and be very welcoming.

There's a growing interest in getting healthy and spending time outdoors. There's like 80+ miles of greenways for walking/running/cycling. There's lots of water to play on and individuals and groups in the area that do everything from basic canoeing to organized crew rowing. Restaurants range from fast food to best of the best fine dining (that most of us common folk will never be allowed in). You can get American, French, Belgian, Thai, Brazilian, Korean (sorta), various Middle Eastern styles, and I'm sure I'm missing several. We even have a world class custom mens suit tailor in town.

The arts are well supported with a fine symphony, choral groups, art museum, and an international photographer with a local studio (who rides as well). Knoxville has several festivals from beer to music to food. There are lots of international cultures represented in town and folks mostly get along. If religion is your thing, there are lots of churches of various flavors representing the spectrum of beliefs. I'm sure you can find what you need on that front. The radio stations are mostly of the Corporate pop variety. There is one college station and a decent NPR affiliate.

The riding here is great. The foothills of the Smokys provide lots of corners, elevation changes, and great mix of urban and country riding and that's all before you even leave the city limits. Short day trips will give you enough to explore to keep you busy for years. Long day trips can easily take you to some of the best riding east of the Mississippi river. I know you mentioned "the dragon" but that's just where we send the visitors. If you like tight curves and constant leaning, there are other roads here that will make you forget about Deal's Gap. There are a couple of MX parks withing a short driving distance. There is a vintage scene and trials is slowly gaining in popularity. The greatest bit is there is rarely a shortage of people and groups happy to show you the roads and help you explore your new home.

We have dealerships of just about every manufacturer and same goes for cars. We've also lucky to have outstanding private mechanics that can wrench on pretty much anything, some can even handle warranty work. There are riding clubs of various activity levels for all types of brands/style/etc. I'm rather partial to one and if you are interested I'll hook you up with our info when you are in town.

Sports wise you'd better learn to love, or at least tolerate, Big Orange. The town takes college football very seriously. We don't slouch on Basketball but it isn't what it once was. We have decent college baseball as well. Knoxville has minor league baseball and hockey. Those teams really make going to a game a good time. There is also a bad ass Roller Derby team based here!

Welcome home.
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Old 05-12-2014, 07:27 AM   #5
mrbreeze
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UT has some pretty good Women's basketball and softball programs, too.

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Old 05-12-2014, 08:12 AM   #6
RockBreaker
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Joined: Aug 2007
Location: Athens, TN...The best riding area ever!!!
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Look up "Time Warp Tea Room" It's cool.
Kville or Knoxvages has a active BMW club, a awesome dirt riders club "VolRiders", The Terry Farm is a hot bed for Trials Riders, Plenty of sport biking going on if that's your thing...Dollywood is my favorite park.....Winters are awesome just enough snow/cold to have seasons without the real ulgy shit... I ride dirt, and dual sport year round..........
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Old 05-12-2014, 09:09 AM   #7
cccolin OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mossy_Crk View Post
Knoxville is a great town. It's a bit spread out so you don't get the city feel except in downtown. The people here can be super friendly and will often reply if you say hi while out in town. The "southern charm" might be a little watered down with all the transplants but if you speak up, most folks will start smiling and be very welcoming.

There's a growing interest in getting healthy and spending time outdoors. There's like 80+ miles of greenways for walking/running/cycling. There's lots of water to play on and individuals and groups in the area that do everything from basic canoeing to organized crew rowing. Restaurants range from fast food to best of the best fine dining (that most of us common folk will never be allowed in). You can get American, French, Belgian, Thai, Brazilian, Korean (sorta), various Middle Eastern styles, and I'm sure I'm missing several. We even have a world class custom mens suit tailor in town.

The arts are well supported with a fine symphony, choral groups, art museum, and an international photographer with a local studio (who rides as well). Knoxville has several festivals from beer to music to food. There are lots of international cultures represented in town and folks mostly get along. If religion is your thing, there are lots of churches of various flavors representing the spectrum of beliefs. I'm sure you can find what you need on that front. The radio stations are mostly of the Corporate pop variety. There is one college station and a decent NPR affiliate.

The riding here is great. The foothills of the Smokys provide lots of corners, elevation changes, and great mix of urban and country riding and that's all before you even leave the city limits. Short day trips will give you enough to explore to keep you busy for years. Long day trips can easily take you to some of the best riding east of the Mississippi river. I know you mentioned "the dragon" but that's just where we send the visitors. If you like tight curves and constant leaning, there are other roads here that will make you forget about Deal's Gap. There are a couple of MX parks withing a short driving distance. There is a vintage scene and trials is slowly gaining in popularity. The greatest bit is there is rarely a shortage of people and groups happy to show you the roads and help you explore your new home.

We have dealerships of just about every manufacturer and same goes for cars. We've also lucky to have outstanding private mechanics that can wrench on pretty much anything, some can even handle warranty work. There are riding clubs of various activity levels for all types of brands/style/etc. I'm rather partial to one and if you are interested I'll hook you up with our info when you are in town.

Sports wise you'd better learn to love, or at least tolerate, Big Orange. The town takes college football very seriously. We don't slouch on Basketball but it isn't what it once was. We have decent college baseball as well. Knoxville has minor league baseball and hockey. Those teams really make going to a game a good time. There is also a bad ass Roller Derby team based here!

Welcome home.

thanks, that's really helpful. Re: the dragon, i said, "other than the dragon," because i've been once, and thats probably enough for me. I rode a bunch of awesome roads on the NC side, I'm assuming there's other good stuff around there.

and I am a cyclist, too, so good to hear about the greenways.

on the topic of repair shops and dealerships, how is the local moto scene in Knoxville? is it mostly Harleys? are there any custom builders in town? what kind of bikes do the private mechs specialize in?
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:04 AM   #8
Mossy_Crk
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There are lots of cruisers in the area, both Harley and metric. I've never had any direct negative interactions with them. At charity rides, etc, I've taken some light hearted teasing as the lone guy on a GS but it was all in good fun. If you focus on what you have in common and not what is different most folks here are pretty chill. There's still a local harley club that will yell out "Hey power ranger" if we run into each other and just laugh when I ask where their pirate ship is docked.

There are a few custom guys here. Some nights they show up at the Time Warp to meet with other riders. There are also the 5-5-5 guys. They are a unique breed and some of the coolest folks around. I think the general rules are something like pre-75 bike, less than 500cc, for less than $500, then ride it 2500 miles.

As Rockbreaker mentioned, there is a really active BMW club in town, BMWROK that is pretty open minded. Heck, our secretary rides a cruiser. I'd be happy to meet you before a meeting so you don't have to walk in not knowing anyone.

For mechanics...check this list out from the yellowpages. I can't imagine there being anything that can't be worked on by those folks. If you have old vintage stuff, there are folks who can make more personal recommendations than I can. From this group that one I know first hand is Willis Cycle Works.
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:24 AM   #9
cccolin OP
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awesome, thanks. sounds good. I'll hit you up when we finally make it down there. I do all my own work, and I'm starting a couple customs, just trying to get a feel for what it's like. Up here, I have a spot in a pretty awesome, well-equipped communal garage, and I know I'm going to miss that. but I'll take the trade because the riding up here blows. We're looking for a house with a garage so I can set up a shop for myself to do work, so hopefully that works out. FWIW, I have a revolving door of bikes right now, but I usually go for early 2000's sporty Japanese bikes. I think the next one is going to be a Duc or Tri though.
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Old 05-12-2014, 10:54 AM   #10
peejman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cccolin View Post
thanks, that's really helpful. Re: the dragon, i said, "other than the dragon," because i've been once, and thats probably enough for me. I rode a bunch of awesome roads on the NC side, I'm assuming there's other good stuff around there.

and I am a cyclist, too, so good to hear about the greenways.

on the topic of repair shops and dealerships, how is the local moto scene in Knoxville? is it mostly Harleys? are there any custom builders in town? what kind of bikes do the private mechs specialize in?
Cyclist... If you're a serious road biker, you'll want to avoid those greenways. Lots of traffic and its all going slowly. There's plenty of good mountain biking around. There's also good road biking, but expect no quarter from the cars. People just don't care and they'll run your ass over without even misspelling the text they're sending.

The bike scene is a mix. There are lots of Harley type groups around, but there's plenty of street/sport and dual sport folks too. As RockBreaker said, there's also a vintage group.

Most of the private mechanic's I know of work mostly on Japanese bikes. Which isn't to say they can't work on Harleys, but Harley guys go to the Harley shop.
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Old 05-12-2014, 11:11 AM   #11
cccolin OP
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Cyclist... If you're a serious road biker, you'll want to avoid those greenways. Lots of traffic and its all going slowly. There's plenty of good mountain biking around. There's also good road biking, but expect no quarter from the cars. People just don't care and they'll run your ass over without even misspelling the text they're sending.

The bike scene is a mix. There are lots of Harley type groups around, but there's plenty of street/sport and dual sport folks too. As RockBreaker said, there's also a vintage group.

Most of the private mechanic's I know of work mostly on Japanese bikes. Which isn't to say they can't work on Harleys, but Harley guys go to the Harley shop.

i actually wondered that about the greenways. I do mostly road biking, but i'd be down with switching to MTB. I grew up and started cycling seriously in south carolina, so i'm pretty aware of the anti-cyclist attitudes and driving down there. in college at USC, I lost count of how many times i had, "get a car, loser!" shouted at me.
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Old 05-12-2014, 05:41 PM   #12
peejman
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Originally Posted by cccolin View Post
i actually wondered that about the greenways. I do mostly road biking, but i'd be down with switching to MTB. I grew up and started cycling seriously in south carolina, so i'm pretty aware of the anti-cyclist attitudes and driving down there. in college at USC, I lost count of how many times i had, "get a car, loser!" shouted at me.
College at USC? I retract all my good advice... GO TIGERS!



Seriously tho... There's good road biking to be had, you'll just have to learn which roads are good ones and which ones aren't. I used to road bike a lot as well but got away from it due to work and kids and such. I'd like to get back into doing something and I kinda like the idea of mountain biking, mostly due to the reduced traffic.
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Old 05-12-2014, 06:22 PM   #13
cccolin OP
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hahaha. I actually grew up about 10 minutes from Clemson. I think I just went to USC to be farther away from home. dont worry, though, I transferred out and graduated elsewhere.

and yeah, MTB...low traffic. sounds nice. although after NYC I imagine most part of Tennessee will seem like very low traffic.
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Old 05-13-2014, 07:02 AM   #14
peejman
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hahaha. I actually grew up about 10 minutes from Clemson. I think I just went to USC to be farther away from home. dont worry, though, I transferred out and graduated elsewhere.

and yeah, MTB...low traffic. sounds nice. although after NYC I imagine most part of Tennessee will seem like very low traffic.
I didn't go to Clemson (couldn't afford out of state tuition) but both parents and lots of other relations did. My family is mostly from Spartanburg.

Traffic... You might think that. I've never been to NYC but have been to a couple other large metro areas. From my perspective, people in "big" cities know how to drive in traffic. Traffic can be very heavy but it still moves at 70 mph. Here, when traffic gets heavy, everybody just freezes up and it slows to a crawl.
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Old 05-13-2014, 01:03 PM   #15
cccolin OP
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yes and no. I've lived in Boston, Chicago, LA, SF, spent time in Denver, KC, STL, Baltimore, Philly, Atlanta, etc. etc. I think the worst traffic I ever experienced was in Atlanta. NYC is a different ball game, though. It's an absolute warzone. I will give you that, for the most part, NYC drivers are way better than the other cities I mentioned about keeping traffic flowing, but there are plenty of days when it just stops and you are stuck on the BQE for an hour or two.

My bro lives in Greenville. The rest of my family lives in Anderson. I go to anderson a couple times a year to chill out and get out of NYC. Part of the reason I'm moving to TN...those trips have taught me I'm pretty over NYC style living and am looking forward to taking er a little easier back down south.
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