During a trip to the Nashville Zoo, guests greet animals who crawl, swim, creep, and fly through a wide range of habitats and displays, including a three-acre savannah and 15,000-square-foot lagoon. Pack a map and board a train to peek at elands, swap tales with zebras, and challenge ostriches to a game of Simon Says. The fun continues indoors as the Unseen New World exhibit enthralls visitors with reptiles, snakes, and bats, and the amphitheater plays host to daily animal shows. Elsewhere throughout the park, kids can scale a 66,000-square-foot jungle gym and emit whoops on the Wild Animal Carousel, burning off excess energy before moving on to meet toucans, cougars, and sasquatches.
Friends of Riverside Drive, a collective volunteer effort, began with a vision to transform local neighborhoods by planting dogwood and yoshino cherry trees. Along with tree plantings across neighborhoods and involvement with the Riverside Blossom Festival, Friends of Riverside Drive’s main work is restoring beauty and dignity to Riverside Drive, a community road that provides the main route to the National Cemetery and once served as a recognized, living memorial to war veterans.
A marksman steps into his lane, steadies his aim, and fires at the target hanging 25 yards away. On Sumner Gun & Supply's 10-lane indoor range, this scenario plays out daily as shooters hone their handgun proficiency. In addition to overseeing open-range time, Sumner's defense experts teach classes, such as youth safety seminars and advanced pistol operation. Between classes and sessions on the range—which is equipped with adjustable benches for disabled and elderly guests—a lounge area encourages guests to relax upon black leather couches while watching a flat-screen television. For frequent visitors, the staff offers several membership options.
Beyond the range, Sumner Gun & Supply extends to a pro shop, where arms specialists serve sport shooters, hunters, security officers, and collectors of antique weapons. An onsite gunsmith also dispenses services, including the cleaning, repair, restoration, and customization of firearms.
The Murfreesboro Symphony Orchestra sets the mood for the holiday season with a compilation of festive favorites led by guest conductor Joseph Hermann. Douse your ear canal with musical eggnog as violins pluck their strings and glockenspiels spiel their glocks to "O Holy Night," "Sleigh Ride," selections from The Nutcracker, and other aural wintertime classics. Special guests include the Riverdale High School Singers and soloist Diane Pulte, both of whom will stuff sensory stockings with quarter notes and treble clefs throughout the mellifluous evening. From your premiere seat in the majestic First United Methodist Church, you'll enjoy an up-close view of the professional symphony musicians as they coax your body into Yuletide-tinged hums, foot stomps, and restrained reindeer impersonations.
Cragnacker's Bar & Grill simultaneously satisfies appetites for fresh grub and amusement, dishing out a diverse spread of classic pub eats amid a collection of fun-dispensing attractions. Dining duos commence feasting by tag-teaming a pile of wings, which are served mild or cloaked in a sauce hot enough to melt tableside ice sculptures.
Standing Stone Farm's Paula Butler, whose cheese making was recently featured on PBS, demonstrates Old-World methods of cheese crafting during small classes held at her boutique dairy-goat farm. During cheese-making workshops, dairy manipulators will learn techniques to create greek feta, marinated feta, classic french chevre, and an easy 45-minute mozzarella, all using farm-fresh goat milk and provided cow's milk. Parched participants in the basic course can sip on complimentary coffee or bring their own alcoholic beverages from home. Upbeat, casual classes take place once or twice a month in the dairy farm's large kitchen with 12–15 students per session. Out on the fields, herds of nubian goats roam free, munching on alfalfa and watching farm-share members pick up their weekly gallon of raw goat milk.