50 Ways to Play Outside in Atlanta and Beyond
, 2022-09-30 00:11:41,
I want to do something…
Go on an urban hike
For a diversity of terrain surprisingly close to Atlanta’s urban core, lace up the Timberlands or comfy sneakers and check out PATH’s South Peachtree Creek Trail. This 3.6-mile greenway links Emory University to two public parks (Mason Mill and Medlock) with a full mile of boardwalks snaking over swampy wetlands and rising high into hardwood canopies. On the west side, the forested Lionel Hampton–Beecher Hills Park offers an easy, 1.2-mile trail of paved and rugged natural surfaces where deer sightings are common, all adjacent to Westview Cemetery. Or, for tucked-away serenity in between residential North Druid Hills and a huge Target, the Elwyn John Wildlife Sanctuary at Kittredge Park features a 1.2-mile loop through the woods.
Stroll through a cemetery
Cemeteries have long been destinations: In the 1850s, New York’s Green-Wood Cemetery drew nearly as many visitors as Niagara Falls. “People brought picnics and saw them as places to enjoy nature,” says Liz Clappin, host of the podcast Tomb with a View and an urban planner with the City of Atlanta who, as part of the Cemetery Network, helps document and advocate for the 82 known burial grounds within city limits. “Anybody who sees cemeteries differently today has kind of lost the spirit of the institution.” If you’re interested in architecture and design, visit Atlanta’s Greenwood, which has dedicated Greek and Chinese sections and is home to the oldest public Holocaust memorial in the country. Nature? Utoy and Decatur, which is next door to a small park with a wooded path and a stream. Clappin’s favorite haunt for culture and history is South-View, in the Historic Lakewood Heights neighborhood. “It’s a veritable who’s who of Black Atlanta,” she says. The final resting place for Hank Aaron, John Lewis, and Martin Luther King Jr.’s parents, South-View was one of the first Black businesses in the country, founded in 1886 by a group of formerly enslaved people in response to the way segregated burial grounds treated Black Atlantans. Its older, nonperpetual care section is a beautiful place to roam—especially with a lavender cold brew in hand from nearby Black Coffee Company.
Play outdoor pickup basketball
For all the ballers out there, Atlanta is blessed with a multitude of public courts. Since 2015, the Atlanta Hawks Foundation has upgraded seven of them with…
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