published Thursday, October 10th, 2013

The Block Party marks RiverRocks finale - Oct. 12

Booker T. Jones
Booker T. Jones
Photo by Contributed Photo /Chattanooga Times Free Press.

IF YOU GO

* What: RiverRocks finale, The Block Party.

* When: 5:30-10 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12.

* Where: Broad Street between Tennessee Aquarium and Third Street.

* Admission: Free.

* Website: www.riverrockschattanooga.com.

WHAT TO WATCH

These adventure sports events will be taking place Saturday, Oct. 12, before the RiverRocks finale.

* Triple Crown of Bouldering, 8 a.m. at Stone Fort

* Chattanooga Head Race, 8 a.m. at Ross's Landing

* Urban Nature 10K, 8 a.m. at Stringer's Ridge

* Five Points Fifty, 8 a.m. at Lula Lake

* Swim the Suck 10-Mile Swim, 9:30 a.m., Tennessee River Gorge

* Note: Scheduled Sunday, Oct. 13, is the RiverRocks Duathalon at 8 a.m. at Enterprise South. Scheduled Saturday, Oct. 26, is the ChattaJack 31 watersports race at Coolidge Park.

The RiverRocks festival returns to Chattanooga's riverfront Saturday, Oct. 12, for The Block Party finale.

The event takes its name from its multistreet, outdoor venue plus the sneak peek it offers of The Block, which features High Point Climbing and Fitness, with state-of-the-art indoor/outdoor climbing, and the newest location of the Rock/Creek retail store.

Staged in the middle of Broad Street between the Tennessee Aquarium and Third Street, the celebration will begin with street entertainment at 5:30 p.m. Visitors can stroll the block to hear music from local buskers, see a stunt bike show by On the Edge, learn about biking products on the Trek Truck and explore outdoor displays.

Scenic City Roots, which premiered at last year's RiverRocks, will return outdoors for its first anniversary. Headlining the 7 p.m. show will be Booker T. Jones, best known as the frontman of Booker T. and the MG's. A 30-year career as a multi-instrumentalist, producer, songwriter and performer has earned Jones a Grammy Award for Lifetime Achievement.

He will be the last of four acts featured on a large stage positioned in the front drive of the Aquarium. Also in the lineup are Radney Foster, an Americana singer/songwriter who experienced commercial success as part of the Foster & Lloyd duo before finding acclaim in a solo career; Nashville funk band Space Capone; and local band Amber Fults & the Ambivalent Lovers, who won this year's Road to Nightfall competition.

Beside the stage, two hot-air balloons will glow with color as dusk approaches, weather permitting. Across the river at Coolidge Park, hot-air balloons will be available for $250 adventure rides 5-7:30 p.m. Friday, Oct. 11, and 7-9:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 12-13. (You can arrange a flight with Smoky Mountain Air Ballooning at www.smokymtnair.com or 615-995-2685.)

The festival will close with a program designed by local multimedia artist/director Tim Hinck. Using High Point's outdoor climbing wall as a backdrop, the finale will use technology, sound, advanced lighting and footage of local athletes to engulf the audience in the world of extreme outdoor sports.

All activities are free. Beer and soft drinks will be for sale on the street. Dining will be available at food trucks parked on the Aquarium plaza as well as nearby restaurants. In the immediate area are Bluewater, Big River, Mellow Mushroom, Easy Bistro, Ben & Jerry's and TGI Fridays.

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