Knox County Tennessee
SS_Mural

Strong Streams - Murals


Click here to watch the time-lapse video of the Karns mosaic
mural installation


Click here for a detailed description of the native plants and
animals depicted in the Ten Mile Creek Greenway Mural

Click here to hear what a Green Heron sounds like


Click here to hear what a Belted Kingfisher sounds like

Why Murals?

Educating the community through public art installations is a great way to beautify the area and increase appreciation for both the environment and the arts. Murals enhance the livability of neighborhoods and communities by providing an educational work of art to the people who live there. Murals tend to create a sense of community ownership, providing a meeting place for groups, and recognition of the space. They can transform a blank space into a work of art; one to congregate around, meet at, talk about, and so on. Research shows that murals also help to deter vandalism. A sense of respect surfaces among artists when they see that hard work and time has gone into a piece of art. Furthermore, mural projects give local artists the opportunity to share their passion for art with the public, promoting an appreciation for artistic expression.

Mural Projects

Karns Senior Center/Knox County Sportspark – June 2018

In June of 2018, the Strong Streams program completed its second mural project, located at the Karns Senior Center, adjacent to the Knox County Sportspark. This project was implemented under the artistic direction of Jillian Hirsch, a graduate student in the UT Art Department. Working with members of the Karns Community, specifically senior citizens and youth, the project raised awareness about protecting stream headwaters and buffers. Three hands-on workshops were held that encouraged participants to create specialized tiles for the mural wall. In June, the entire community was invited to come help place tiles on the wall as part of the mosaic mural.

Healthy headwater streams and buffer zones are essential to proper function and health of our local waterways. Riparian buffer zones are vegetated areas near a stream that help to shade and protect the stream from adjacent land uses. This includes nutrient and chemical runoff, and excess sediment deposits caused by erosion of the stream banks. Headwaters are smaller streams that eventually come to connect to larger streams, rivers, and lakes that aid in controlling the flow of water, preventing flooding and erosion while also helping to reduce the amount of nutrients that reach the larger bodies of water.

An official celebratory unveiling will be held on July 17th, 2018 at 4:30p with Knox County Mayor Tim Burchett at the Karns Senior Center (8042 Oak Ridge Hwy). A cookout will follow the unveiling. To RSVP, please contact the Knox County Stormwater Department for more details at stormwater@knoxcounty.org or 865-215-5540.

  • Platinum Sponsor ($1,500)
    Beaver Creek Kayak Club
  • Gold Sponsors ($1,000)
    Alisa Pruett – Keller Williams Realty



  • Gold Sponsors ($1,000)
    West Knox Utility District
  • Silver Sponsors ($500)
    Fulghum, MacIndoe, & Associates, Inc.
  • Silver Sponsors ($500)
    S&ME, Inc.
  • Silver Sponsors ($500)
    Visit Knoxville
  • Silver Sponsors ($500)
    Water Quality Forum
  • Silver Sponsors ($500)
    Karns Community Club
  • Bronze Sponsors ($250)
    Kirby Plants
  • Bronze Sponsors ($250)
    Rep. Roger Kane
  • Bronze Sponsors ($250)
    Karns District 6 Democrats

Ten Mile Creek Greenway

In late 2016 to June of 2017, the Strong Streams program worked with local artist Curtis Glover to paint this stream ecosystem mural at the Ten Mile Creek Greenway (pictured above). The design of the mural takes us into the stream habitat where we see fish, water bugs, birds, plants, and other wildlife that reside in a healthy stream.

Many people do not recognize the variety of life that exists in and around a healthy stream. Unfortunately, they also do not realize that whatever water goes down a storm drain leads directly to the stream, not a waste water treatment plant. Water is inherently “sticky,” so it picks up pollutants on the way to the storm drain or stream. Urban streams, in particular, are susceptible to pollutants like litter, oil/gas/grease from cars, dirt or sediment from construction sites, fertilizers, and pet waste.

The ‘Strong Streams: Ten Mile Creek’ mural is a unique project that aims to encourage citizens to care for and protect their local streams through conservation and restoration. Check out the mural located along the Ten Mile Creek greenway near the intersection of Broome Rd and North Gallaher View Rd.

  • $1,000 sponsors
    Forterra
  • $1,000 sponsors
    Water Quality Forum
  • $500 sponsors
    S&ME, Inc.
  • $500 sponsors
    Visit Knoxville
  • $500 sponsors
    Fulghum, MacIndoe, & Associates, Inc.
  • $500 sponsors
    Knoxville Track Club

Want to get involved?

We are always on the lookout for areas where a mural can be painted. If you have an area (in the county jurisdiction) that you think would be a great place for a mural, let us know! Additionally, if you are interested in sponsoring a mural project, please reach out to us at Stormwater@knoxcounty.org or call 865-215-5540.

For more information on how you can be involved in the protection of our local streams, consider becoming part of our Adopt-A-Stream program.

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Stormwater

205 West Baxter Avenue
Knoxville, TN 37917

Phone: 865-215-5800
Fax: 865-215-5831

Hours:
Monday - Friday
8:00 am - 4:30 pm
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