Ascend Amphitheater, Riverfront Park Officially Open In Nashville


Ascend Amphitheater, Riverfront Park Officially Open In Nashville

CREATED Jul 30, 2015 - UPDATED: Jul 30, 2015

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – City officials were on-hand for a ribbon-cutting Thursday morning that officially opened the new Riverfront Park and Ascend Amphitheater in downtown Nashville.
The new amphitheater and park located along the Cumberland River on 1st Avenue South officially opened at 11 a.m. during a ceremony led by Mayor Karl Dean.

"This 11 acres was the last piece of green space downtown, and for the city's health, it was important to preserve," Dean said.

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The new park features downtown's first dog park. There are 13,000 square feet of space for dogs, most of it covered with artificial turf.

Visitors will also find adult sized swings that overlook both the river, and the skyline. Thursday morning Roselyn Timon sat in those swings with her two children.

"We really appreciate the job they did, it's really so good, and make us Nashvillians feel really good," Timon said.

Picnic tables surround a large event lawn in the middle of the park, next to that is an 18,000 square foot ornamental garden. The city teamed up with Cheekwood Botanical Gardens to build and maintain the area. There are 25 foot wide sidewalks along 1st Avenue with a two-way bike lane. Public wi-fi is also available in certain areas of Riverfront Park.

The project unites a park, music, and the river.

"Bringing all those things together is a pretty strong package, and a great representation of our city, Dean added.

The Ascend Amphitheater sits at the southern end of the park. It has a capacity of 6,800 concert goers. There are 2,200 temporary lawn seats, 4,500 lawn seats, and 100 premium box seats. The head of the Live Nation, the company this is managing the amphitheater, said Ascend has the potential to become one of the best outdoor venues in the country.

"You've got the skyline, and just the beauty of what the fan experience is going to be, convenience of coming in and out of downtown, restaurants, hotels. It has a lot attributes that are unique to this particular venue," said Bob Roux.

County star Eric Church will play the first of two, consecutive shows at the amphitheater Thursday night. Tickets to both shows have sold out.

More artists, such as Chicago, Earth Wind and Fire, Idina Menzel and Widespread Panic are scheduled to perform there in the coming months.

The project has been years in the making after a thermal plant burned down in 2002. However, this has been part of a wider project to revitalize this side of the river, and will include more than just music.
Over one mile of multi-use greenway trails and Nashville's first downtown dog park at 13,400 square feet are among the newest additions to the riverfront area.

The public was invited to a community open house on Sunday from 1:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m.with free music and many more events. Visitors have been asked to bring a donation of school supplies to the event.

For more information, on tickets and upcoming events, visit www.ascendamphitheater.com.