Challenge Nation pioneered the urban-adventure race with a race season that includes visits to more than 35 cities across the country. Each scavenger hunt is personalized to the hosting city, exploring its many diverse neighborhoods with a series of clues that would test even the most skilled children's-book detective. The teams?composed of at least two people?vie for a $300 first-place prize. The Amazing Race?style competition rewards quick wits and wise planning over physical fitness, so the best way to prepare is by doing logic puzzles while eating Funyuns and lounging in a La-Z-Boy. The top 25 teams qualify, the top five receiving free entry, to compete in the national championship, which rewards winning teams with a $5,000 cash prize.
The multiple YMCA locations in metropolitan Chattanooga serve more than 37,000 members a year and fulfill the mission of uniting guests regardless of gender, age, faith, background, abilities, or income. Founded in London in 1844, the YMCA spread to its Chattanooga home in 1871 and continues to operate with help from local community volunteers as stalwart as I Love Lucy syndicators. Each location caters to the needs of children, teens, seniors, and families with afterschool programs and fitness-based activities. Cardio machines pump hearts, racquetball courts host fun competitions, and pools allow goggles to fulfill their original purpose: snapping the face with their elastic band to make a diver jump off the blocks faster. A sauna and steam room heat clients up after they cool down in the pools, and parents can drop their young children off at the nursery before participating in group fitness classes.
Musical creativity thrives within the walls of Kimbro's Pickin Parlor. The eclectic southern-style bistro and performance venue occupies a former neighborhood store and Victorian cottage, lending a timeless aesthetic that the staff is only happy to embrace.
Each room of the refurbished home offers its own unique ambiance, although each one honors musicianship in its own way. A bar made entirely out of vintage radio sets sits beside a fireplace and mantle. A dangling guitar rack supports a handful of guitars that are available for customers to take and play their favorite songs. In the main bar area, flyers from past shows paper the walls and form a vibrant mishmash of a collage. The main stage is the signature attraction though, hosting live performances Monday?Saturday by established as well as up-and-coming songwriters.
In between sets, Kimbro's Pickin Parlor encourages patrons to indulge themselves with a drink or a meal of down-home comfort food. The beer menu includes more than 30 options from foreign and domestic producers; however, the draft list consists entirely of creations by local craft breweries, such as Turtle Anarchy and Black Abbey. To accompany these thirst-quenchers, the chefs cook a variety of hearty dishes, including smoked, hand-pulled chicken served atop Johnny Cakes with country gravy and a signature meatloaf made with a mixture of beef and mild italian sausage.
Belcourt Taps celebrates the charms and flavors of the South with regular live music, and gourmet twists on comfort classics. The festivities begin before diners even step through the door. Outside, a sprawling patio surrounds the restaurant, lit up at night with warm sconce lighting and candlelight. There, guests can dig into gourmet stuffed burgers and tacos with pulled pork, shrimp, or chicken. Diners can also explore tapas and shareable plates of fried green tomatoes and nachos or dive solo into a barbecue pulled pork sandwich.
Inside, regular live music showcases the talents of singers and songwriters who carry on the Nashville sound. Golden yellow walls brighten the room, adding the feel of a southwestern cantina or a southwestern cantina owned by a pyromaniac, and soft overhead lighting creates the ideal atmosphere for a draft beer.
Willie Nelson’s Country Throwdown pulls no punches as living-legend Willie Nelson and a posse of hit-making deputies coat eardrums in vibrant layers of pure country topped with authentic honky-tonk. Spearheading the celebration, Willie shares his swollen songbook, impeccable picking, and inimitable voice, crafting melodies that resonate through the antennae of music lovers of every ilk. The event’s aural buffet also features a diverse assortment of breakout jongleurs; artists who may be performing include Jamey Johnson, Randy Houser, and Lee Brice.
Live music fills the air every night in Sambuca 360's futuristic lounge space, urging hips to sway with strains of everything from acoustic rock to high-energy dance music. The food is equally energetic—chefs craft globally influenced entrees and small plates such as lobster enchiladas in a poblano cream sauce and tempura-fried buca beignets stuffed with mozzarella and prosciutto. Mixologists craft more than 30 creative cocktails—many of which are designed with low-calorie diets in mind—at a glowing, saffron-colored bar that touches the stage, allowing revelers to sip an agave-nectar margarita or mango-peach martini between cheered requests for the band to play a favorite tune or play in a favorite guitar tuning.