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More than 100 people attended a public meeting Thursday night, March 24, at the Scarboro Community Center to discuss site selection for the new Oak Ridge Preschool. 

Oak Ridge City Council was set to decide the new preschool location during their regular meeting on Monday, March 13, but chose to delay the vote until after a community meeting could be held.

The City of Oak Ridge and Oak Ridge Schools have been working to choose a site for the new preschool for approximately two years. The preschool would relocate from the school administration building on New York Avenue. Members of a committee formed to  recommend possible sites looked at city-owned properties and a multitude of factors that would impact future students, their families and the community as a whole. Two locations were ultimately identified as possibilities: Scarboro Park and Elm Grove Park.

Scarboro Park

Elm Grove Park

Scarboro Park is across the street from the Scarboro Community Center on Carver Avenue, which was also considered an option at one time. The Scarboro Community Center was removed from further consideration due to challenges of converting the center for active school uses.  The Board of Education voted to approve the Scarboro Park site for the new preschool at a meeting on February 27.

Background information was presented by members of the Board of Education, City Council and the City Manager at the beginning of Thursday's meeting. After that, the Senior Project Manager from Studio Four Design (the a rchitectural firm selected for the project) went over preliminary concepts for both potential sites. Questions and comments from the public were then addressed and discussed at length, with people speaking both for and against the project.

City Council expects to take action during a special-called meeting at 7:00 p.m. on March 27 in the Municipal Building Courtroom. 
Join a park ranger for a bike ride down beautiful Melton Lake Greenway. The Manhattan Project National Historical Park will present a free program on Saturday, March 25, at 10 a.m. 

The program will begin at Elza Gate Park, former entry point to the Secret City, and continue down Melton Lake Greenway. 

Rangers will stop several times along the bike ride to point out the rich history that is found within the Oak Ridge area.

Elza Gate Park is located at 101 Oak Ridge Turnpike. If you need directions, maps are available at the National Park desk in the American Museum of Science and Energy in Oak Ridge.

For more information or directions, please contact the Manhattan Project National Historical Park at (865) 576-6767. 

Visitors are also encouraged to visit the Manhattan Project National Historical Park website for even more information.
Mark your calendars for a Wellness Fair at the Civic Center! Details are below. 

You can also keep track of the fair using our Facebook event page as a reminder and show others that you're interested in attending.

The Recreation and Parks Department will host the 2017 Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 8, at 11 a.m. Hundreds of children are expected to participate in this annual spring event. Over 15,000 candy and prize-filled eggs will be hidden in Bissell Park with a 1st, 2nd and 3rd place prize egg in each age group.

This event will be held rain or shine, so participants should dress for the weather. If severe weather prevents hiding the eggs outdoors, they will be given away in the gym and a drawing will be held for the prizes.

Participants should arrive early and assemble in the Civic Center gymnasium prior to 11 a.m. The children will be divided into separate age groups and will be escorted to their respective hunt areas. The hunt is targeted for children age four through 4th grade.

Recreation and Parks Department staff will make a reasonable effort to provide appropriate accommodations for special needs. Parents of children who require a more accessible hunt area are encouraged to call ahead.

Adult volunteers (age 16 and up) are needed to hide eggs, supervise the hunt areas and assist participants. All volunteers should be prepared to work from 9 a.m. to 12 noon on the day of the event and should dress according to the weather. The first 50 volunteers to sign up will receive an event T-shirt. A pizza lunch will be served to all volunteers immediately following the event.

For more information, call the Civic Center front desk at (865) 425-3450 or visit the Oak Ridge Recreation and Parks website at .

City offices will be closed on Friday, April 14, 2017, in observance of Good Friday.

Household refuse and recycling collection is not affected by the holiday.

The 8th lane on the Oak Ridge Rowing Course has been completed on schedule and under budget, just in time to welcome teams for spring training and the season's first regatta.

Previously, the course utilized seven rowing lanes, taking Oak Ridge out of the running for any event requiring eight lanes for competition. Part of the waterway was widened and a retaining wall installed in order to create the additional lane.

Spring training started in late February and runs through April 22. Oak Ridge has already welcomed dozens of teams to town. The first regatta on this season's schedule, the Oak Ridge Cardinal Invitational, kicked off Saturday, March 11. Approximately 12 teams competed in the event.  Explore Oak Ridge and the Oak Ridge Rowing Association expect a total of more than 30 different teams to come to town this year for spring training, with up to 50 rowers on each team. Those numbers make this one of the longest spring training seasons with the highest number of participants we've seen in many years.

First Place Finish, Inc., was selected to carry out the 8th lane project back in September. The $548,350 contract was awarded to the company during a meeting of City Council. A partial closure of Melton Lake Greenway and a temporary speed limit reduction along part of Melton Lake Drive were both lifted as the project wrapped up.

"This is a very exciting project for our community," Recreation and Parks Department Director Jon Hetrick said. "Having something of this scale completed on time and under budget is a win for everyone involved."

Construction of the 8th lane was funded by a combination of state appropriations ($250,000 from the State of Tennessee), City Capital Improvement funds and a grant from the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA). The Oak Ridge Rowing Association (ORRA), Explore Oak Ridge, Oak Ridge Economic Development Initiative, and Visit Knoxville also contributed funds to the project.

"These entities have come together to fund a project that will allow the world-class Oak Ridge Rowing Course to attract even more and larger events," City Manager Mark Watson said. "The new lane also ensures that the Oak Ridge course will remain competitive as one of the top-ranked rowing venues in the United States."

Rowing has an annual economic impact of more than $2 million for Oak Ridge and surrounding communities. The City would like to express its gratitude to State Representative John Ragan, Lt. Governor Randy McNally and all those who have worked so hard to support this important project.

Six regattas remain on the spring event schedule:

  • Atomic City Turn & Burn
    • March 25
  • SIRA Championship
    • April 14-15
  • Dogwood Junior Championship
    • April 29-30
  • Big 12 Championship
    • May 14-15
  • Dogwood Masters Classic
    • May 20
  • USRowing Masters Nationals
    • August 17-20
Dogwood Juniors and SIRA are expected to bring in 50+ teams and they are both two-day regattas.  The Fall 2017 schedule consists of one head race regatta in October called the Secret City Head Race.

See media coverage of the 8th rowing lane, Cardinal Invitational regatta and spring training: 

For more information on the 8th rowing lane project, contact the Recreation & Parks Department at (865) 425-3450.
The citywide household trash pick-up program will begin Monday, March 27, 2017. Household rubbish, old appliances and minor remodeling materials will be picked up. City collection efforts will follow the proposed schedule as closely as possible.

Residents have always been very cooperative and we ask for their continued cooperation this year by following a few guidelines:
  • Residents should place all materials near, but not beyond the curb. Keep materials off sidewalks and out of parking areas and gutters.
  • There is a limit of one truckload of material per residence. A truckload is defined as one pickup truck or approximately 3' high x 4' wide x 8' long, approximately 100 cubic feet maximum.
  • Crews will not pick up hazardous items, paint, tires, or piles of rubbish that are mixed with brush or limbs. Compressors must be removed from refrigerators and air conditioners before collection by crews.
  • All materials must be in place no later than 7:30 a.m. on the scheduled pick-up day. Any materials put out after 7:30 a.m. on the scheduled day may not be picked up.

Brush collection is scheduled to begin on April 24, 2017 . A new schedule will be provided in advance of the start date. Brush and bagged leaves/yard clippings will be picked up during the next collection. It should be noted that bagged yard waste will be collected with the regularly scheduled refuse collection throughout the year.

The complete household trash pick-up schedule can be found on the City of Oak Ridge website . The first week is listed below. Please note that the proposed schedule is a general guide and can vary considerably from the actual schedule due to weather conditions and/or the amount of participation by residents.


1st Week
Monday, March 27
Tusculum Drive and side streets, Tempura Drive and side streets, Tiffin Drive and side streets, Tuskegee Drive extension, Scarboro Neighborhood
Tuesday, March 28
Woodland Area
Wednesday, March 29 Hendrix Creek Subdivision
Thursday, March 30 Baypath Drive and side streets, Briarcliff Avenue and side streets, Elmhurst Drive and side streets, Stonebridge
Friday, March 31 Emory Valley Subdivision north of Emory Valley Road from Melton Lake Drive to Fairbanks Road to Warehouse Road

For more information, please contact Waste Connections of Tennessee at (865) 482-3656.
Dozens of people lined the shore at Melton Lake Park on Sunday, March 12, to catch a glimpse of a 185 foot long barge moving down the Clinch River. It's been nearly 15 years since we've seen one navigate that stretch of the water.

The Oak Ridge Rowing Association had been working with barge operators and Eagle Bend Manufacturing in Clinton (the vessel's destination) for weeks in order to coordinate the barge's arrival. Hundreds of rowers were in town that weekend for spring training and the Oak Ridge Cardinal Invitational regatta.

Thanks to a lot of hard work and excellent communication and planning, the barge moved through flawlessly with minimal disruption to rowers. The regatta's last race kicked off around noon on Sunday. Once that was finished, ORRA crews got to work pulling up part of the course so the barge could make it through to the other side. A few lanes remained intact for rowers to practice.

ORRA representatives were out on the water in small boats helping the barge captain and crew navigate the waterway. The top of the tugboat is so tall (nearly three stories) that it cleared the railroad trestle near Calhoun's by just a few feet.

"Seeing the barge in Oak Ridge is a reminder of how valuable this natural resource can be for our community," Oak Ridge City Manager Mark Watson said of Melton Hill Lake and the Clinch River. "The waterways are amazing for recreation and rowing, but they're also a win for us when it comes to economic development."

The barge set off from South Korea a few weeks ago, then came through New Orleans, navigated inter-coastal waterways to the Tennessee River and finally reached Eagle Bend Manufacturing (EBM) on Sunday evening. The off-loading process got started on Monday, March 13. The cargo consisted of five pieces of a 3,000 ton mechanical press. Dozens of other components for the press were delivered by land, but the five pieces on the barge could only be delivered by water due to their size and weight.

"This equipment will be producing large stampings that will be supplied to automotive OEM's and represents a major investment in the latest technology in large stamping capabilities," EBM General Manager and Oak Ridge resident Ed Steinebach said. "Over the next three months, the press will be assembled on EBM's floor and we anticipate it to be fully operational at the end of May. EBM is very excited to have this new equipment as it will bring new opportunities with our current and future product offering."

After making the delivery, the barge passed back through Oak Ridge on Tuesday morning. 

We hope everyone who wanted to see the barge in person was able to do so, but if you couldn't make it out to a viewing location along the river, we have compiled some photos on Facebook (some are aerial images taken by an Eagle Bend representative - thanks for sharing!). Just click here to visit the Eagle Bend Barge photo album.
Lots of changes at Main Street Oak Ridge the last few weeks as crews work to finish the buildings that will house eight new stores.

Vertical construction began earlier this year with the T.J.Maxx and Dick's Sporting Goods complex near Walmart. T.J.Maxx will feature two entrances, both of which now have brick and other finishings on the exterior (below photo shows one of the T.J.Maxx entrances). The two blue pillars to the right of T.J.Maxx mark the entrance for Dick's Sporting Goods.  Both stores are slated for a spring opening. 

Construction on the building that will house PetSmart and Electronic Express began in February (see photo below). Both of those stores are expected to open in late spring.

Four more new stores - Ulta, Rack Room Shoes, Rue 21, and Maurice's - are going in next to Belk. They also have a projected opening date of late spring. The photo below shows framing work underway, but work on the roof and walls has started since this photo was taken earlier this month.

All this construction, and of course the massive demolition that had to occur first, has happened in about eight months. We held a groundbreaking ceremony back on July 20, 2016, just as demolition started to get underway. Belk, along with JCPenney, has remained open throughout the demolition and construction process.
A detailed map provided by RealtyLink (below) shows what the project is expected to look like once it's finished. More updates are expected as the project moves forward. Visit our City of Oak Ridge Facebook page to see updated photos and videos  of the Main Street project, as well as many other events happening around town. 

"LOI" stands for Letter of Intent. For a larger and clearer image, visit RealtyLink's website.
A family of three was able to get to safety during a house fire last month thanks to a smoke alarm installed by the Oak Ridge Fire Department.

The fire on Newberry Circle was reported to 911 at 1:10 a.m. on Friday, February 17. Upon arrival, crews found the fire to be mostly extinguished with moderate smoke throughout the home.

The residents said after the smoke alarm woke them up, they found the fire and poured a pan of water on it as they dialed 911 and exited the home. The two adults and one child were waiting outside the house when firefighters arrived. The first crew on the scene finished extinguishing the fire and cleared the home of smoke.

There were no injuries, but the home had moderate smoke damage. The Oak Ridge Fire Department installed the smoke alarms in this home as a part of their Community Risk Reduction and Fire Prevention program. This incident serves as yet another example of smoke alarms saving lives.

The Red Cross also responded and placed in the 
residents in lodging for the remainder of the night.

If you are in need of smoke alarms in your home, call the Oak Ridge Fire Department Headquarters at (865) 425-3520 to schedule a visit from the smoke alarm program staff. There is no charge for the visit or for the smoke alarms installed by the department.

Every year, the Tennessee Department of Education recognizes outstanding educators in the state with awards for their meritorious service and devotion to students. The department applauds teachers who care, who devote their professional lives to enriching the lives of Tennessee children and who demonstrate exceptional gains in student achievement. Each district in the state may submit one nominee for the state-level award. The nominee selected by Oak Ridge Schools for 2017 is Julie Kinder-McMillan from Robertsville Middle School.

Julie Kinder-McMillan teaches 8th grade reading/language arts as well as journalism and yearbook. One of her passions is to educate students about the Holocaust using the book Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl as a learning platform, as Anne is close in age to her students. Julie has participated in numerous training to enhance her teaching, and had the pleasure of bringing in Holocaust survivor Mira Kimmelman to meet her students.
Among her multiple roles at school, Julie serves as a team leader, yearbook sponsor, newspaper sponsor, school-wide writing program designer/facilitator, talent show organizer, multi-year Williamsburg and Naka Shi trip sponsor, and has served on many committees related to increasing achievement in the English language arts.
Julie participates in numerous community outreach projects. Her most recent contributions include:
  • serving as a teacher fellow for the Tennessee Holocaust Commission;
  • being a chairperson and member of the Alpha Delta Kappa International Society of Women Educators;
  • founding and directing Western Heights Baptist Center children's choir;
  • serving as founding member/photographer for Crosslight Photo Mission;
  • judging the Parent Teacher Student Association (PTSA) Reflections contest at the state level in the literature category;
  • reading for the Yom Hashoah Holocaust Remembrance Service annually with the Jewish Congregation of Oak Ridge
  • participating in her praise team and choir as a member and soloist at Wallace Memorial Baptist Church
Ms. Kinder-McMillan has an impressive list of awards and recognition including:
  • Tennessee Ready to Read Scholarship Award to attend Literacy Research Association Conference in Nashville, TN (2016);
  • Belz-Lipman Tennessee State Holocaust Educator of the year $1500 Award (2013);
  • Alpha Delta Kappa International Living Memorial $2500 Scholarship Award (2013);
  • Grant Recipient for Enhancing Language Arts through Technology project with Oak Ridge Public Schools Education Foundation (2008);
  • Legends Award of Alpha Gamma Chapter, Tennessee Alpha Delta Kappa (2008);
  • WBIR-TV Educator of the Week (2006);
  • Walsworth Publishing Company Superior Performance Award (multiple years).
Julie's principal and colleagues agree that her commitment to teaching inside and outside the classroom benefits all students academically and socially. She has a welcoming presence that fosters confidence in her students and elicits camaraderie among staff members. In the minds of students and staff alike, they say that Julie has "always been their Teacher of the Year." Please join us in congratulating her as the district-wide 2017 Teacher of the Year for Oak Ridge Schools.


Three robotics teams from Jefferson Middle School competed in the FIRST Lego League East Tennessee State Championship at Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville, Tenn., on February 11, 2017. To compete in the state championship, teams must first qualify at either the Knoxville, Nashville, Chattanooga, or Johnson City competitions. The Atomic Eagles, JMS Master Builders, and RadioActive Brix all qualified in Knoxville on December 3, 2016, at Hardin Valley Academy.

The Radioactive Brix (team #3131, pictured above) finished the robot challenge game with a high score of 90 and won 2nd place in mechanical design. Members are: Johnny Clark, Grace Godfrey, Christopher Gorsuch, Ethan Holland, Colby Lawson, Josh Shubert, and Chrystalleni White. The team coach is Norma Franco. The team mentor is Justin Holland. 

The Atomic Eagles (team #336, pictured below) finished the robot challenge game with a high score of 110 and won the 3rd place overall Champions Award. Members are: Ben Dallas, Lindsey Fiscor, Bethany Marshall, Amelie Nagle, Levi Parish, Brian Qu, and Alex Shanafield. The team coaches are Janie Shanafield and David Hundermark. The team mentor is Harold Shanafield. 

The Master Builders (team #3132, pictured below) finished the robot challenge game with a high score of 204 and won the 1st place overall Champion's Award. They received the Global Innovation Award from the East Tennessee FIRST LEGO League Championship. The Master Builders will represent Jefferson Middle school and the state of Tennessee at the FIRST LEGO World Championships in Houston, Texas, on April 19-22, 2017. Team members are: Matthew Alexander, Adam Blanchard, Jessica Mohr, Stella Scott, Thora Spence, and Amelia Thomson. The team coach is Lexie Scott. Dr. Jeff Thomson is also a mentor/coach. 

FIRST Lego League began in 1999 and sponsors international competitions for 9-14 year old students. World Championships are held each spring, and teams from over 50 countries compete in the areas of research, robot design, robot performance and Core values. Core values presentations demonstrate how the team has incorporated the eight core values set forth by FIRST into their team and life as a middle school student. 

Research projects are based on the yearly FIRST Lego League theme. This year's theme is "Animal Allies." Each team spent months researching and developing a project that will improve the quality of life for animals. The Atomic Eagles research project was "Deer vehicle crash prevention." Master Builders' project was titled "Engineering bioplastics to save wild life." The RadioActive Brix's project was "Keeping animals safe during an evacuation." Each team went before judges to present ideas with a skit and answer questions about the project. 

Robot Design is a judging session in which team members describe their robot and Lego Mindstorms EV3 programs to judges. Team members are given an opportunity to explain why and how they built their robot, what the robot does, and share any special elements that they have learned and incorporated into their robot over the course of the season.  

The Robot Game consists of three 2 minute, 30 second rounds. Each team's robot must navigate obstacles and perform tasks on the board. Students spend months designing, building, and programming their robot. 

Find more information about the robot game and the other components of FIRST Lego League at  


Several Oak Ridge High School students participated in the Tennessee Junior Science and Humanities Symposium held on February 23-24, 2017, at the Holiday Inn World's Fair Park in Knoxville. 

The symposium is sponsored by the United States Departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force, and is administered by the Academy of Applied Science in cooperation with the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Oak Ridge National Laboratory also sponsors this event for our region, stating in the program brochure, "Oak Ridge National Laboratory is the largest U.S. Department of Energy science and energy laboratory, conducting basic and applied research to deliver transformative solutions to compelling problems in energy and security."

Wilson Huang presented in Session I on Friday, February 24, with the topic "Designing Acoustically-Driven Microrobots to Stimulate Active Matter." Logan Rumbaugh presented in Session II on Friday, February 24, with the topic "Modeling Collective Motion with Periodic Obstacles."


Poster sessions from students at Oak Ridge High School included Ryan Armstrong presenting "Quantifying the Evolution of Gas from Li-ion Battery Materials" and Dylan Payne presenting "Correcting image distortion from an SEM." Tammy Carneim is the school's official teacher sponsor.
Wilson Huang won first place in the state of Tennessee at this Junior Science and Humanities Symposium. His mentors are Dr. Bradley Lokitz and Dr. Nickolay Lavrik from the Center for Nanophase Materials at Oak Ridge National Laboratory. Wilson will travel to San Diego during the last week of April and present his research at the National Junior Science and Humanities Symposium competition.
"Wilson did an outstanding job communicating his modeling of acoustically driven microrobots," Tammy Carneim stated. "He and the rest of our competitors represented Oak Ridge High School well."

A total of $4,500 in undergraduate tuition scholarships, awarded at $2,000, $1,500, and $1,000, were presented to the top three finalists at the TJSHS. The scholarships can be used at any school of the student's choice and will be payable upon registration.

The top four student presenters and the top poster presenter receive an all-expense-paid trip to attend and compete at the national JSHS, where the top two TJSHS winners will be able to compete in the national competition for additional scholarships.

The Oak Ridge Police Department is partnering with the Tennessee Highway Safety Office (THSO) for its annual Seatbelts Are For Everyone (SAFE) campaign. This statewide initiative is designed to increase seatbelt usage and child passenger safety restraint usage through the implementation of occupant-protection programs, public events, and checkpoints throughout local communities across Tennessee. The SAFE campaign began February 24, 2017, and concludes on August 1, 2017.

"The Oak Ridge Police Department is committed to reducing the number of injuries and deaths on our roadways," Chief of Police James Akagi said. "Wearing a seat belt is not just the law, it can also save your life."

2017 will be the fourth year that the THSO has sponsored the SAFE campaign. Last year yielded the following results:
  • 1,717 child restraint violations
  • 21,562 seat belt citations
  • 723 other seat belt enforcement activities
"In 2015, Tennessee's average seatbelt usage rate was 86.23%," THSO Director Vic Donoho said. "Last year, we soared to 88.95%. Through increased education, enforcement, and community involvement, we're striving for ninety percent or higher."

This year, participating agencies will pay special attention to nighttime seatbelt enforcement. Tennessee has seen a disproportionate percentage of unrestrained fatalities between the hours of 6:00 p.m. and 5:59 a.m. Historically, approximately fifty percent of Tennessee's traffic fatalities are unbelted. That percentage increases to nearly sixty when nighttime crashes are examined.

Local 8 News reporter Kelsey Leyrer (seen above) was in Oak Ridge earlier this month to find out how ORPD officers are working to enforce seat belt use during the overnight hours. Click here to read the full story or click here to watch the video.
The Library is privileged to house the photography collection of Ruth Carey, an original Oak Ridge resident and longtime photographer for the Oak Ridger from the 1960's to the mid-1990's. Her photo collection is vast and varied, including pictures of key political and cultural figures, community events, and weddings.

Unfortunately, many of the photographs do not include notes about who is in the photograph or when or where it was taken. 

With the help of volunteers, Oak Ridge Public Library staff members Teresa Fortney and Jordan Reed have begun digitizing the collection. Some of the photographs that have been digitized are available for public viewing online. However, Mrs. Carey's collection was so comprehensive, only a portion of the total number of photographs have been digitized. 

As the library continues its digitization efforts, it is important that the people and places are identified so as not to lose this important part of our history.  If you would like to help preserve a part of Oak Ridge's history, please join us for our last remaining photo viewing day:
  • Saturday, April 1, from 2-5 p.m.
The library will make the Ruth Carey Collection available for public viewing on the above date during the time specified. If you would like to help identify the people, places and events in these photographs, please join us. 

The event will take place in the library auditorium. All are welcome and encouraged to attend. No call or RSVP necessary.


The art exhibit for March at Oak Ridge Public Library is a vibrant collection of drawings and paintings by artists from Girls Inc. of Oak Ridge. 

Formerly known as the Girls Club, this organization first began in 1976 as a girls-only sports program. Encouraged by strong community advocates, Girls Inc. quickly grew into an after school, summer camp, break camp, and sports program for girls from 5-18 years old. Girls Inc. has grown to become an integral part of the Anderson, Roane and Knox County communities serving over 850 girls per year.
Girls are encouraged to be strong, smart and bold and this exhibit demonstrates these qualities. The young artists explore color, shapes, symmetry, and self-expression in these twenty-nine works of nature, portrait and abstract paintings. Energetic blocks of color contrast with finely detailed still-lifes of flowers. Determination and whimsy are seen in bright portraits and cartoons.
Please visit the library before the end of the month to view the works of these young artists.


Oak Ridge Public Library has announced a new series of programs on the third Wednesday of every month at 10:30 am. 

World Wise Wednesdays are open to the public and will offer discussions on a variety of topics -- from gardening and seed swapping... to how to get the most for your vacation money by cruising... or the natural history of hummingbirds. Below is a schedule of upcoming events:
  • April 19: Flower Arrangements
    • Betty Longworth of Countryside Gardens will demonstrate flower arranging for bouquets and window boxes
  • May 17: Cruising 101
    • Muffett Grub of Cruise Holidays will give hints for how to get the most out of your holiday cruise
For a full program schedule, visit the library's website at or call (865) 425-3455. All events are open to the public and begin at 10:30 in the library auditorium.
The City is looking for an   Electric Line Technician (Lineman). Primary job tasks include w orking with various electric department crews installing or repairing high voltage electrical distribution system components, electrical meters, traffic signals and controllers, and electric fixtures in City facilities. This position will perform both underground and overhead work.

The City is also taking applications for Summer Recreation Positions (Recreation Leaders and Lifeguards) as well as a  School Crossing Guard.

For more details on job requirements and instructions for how to apply to any of these openings, visit the City's website and click on Employment.
Waste Connections of Tennessee announced late last year that they would suspend glass recycling for their curbside pickup program in an effort to remain "dedicated to maintaining a healthy and strong recycling program for all residents." 

That change took effect on January 1, and enforcement began on February 6. Bins containing glass will no longer be picked up at the curb. Residents with glass in their bins may receive a flyer from Waste Connections as a reminder about the recent change.

In a letter to City officials, Doug McGill, Municipal Marketing Manager for Waste Connections, Inc., explained that "markets for recyclable materials ebb and flow, and changes in glass markets have made this change in service necessary. By removing glass from curbside collection, we will preserve the overall integrity of our recycling program."

Mr. McGill went on to say that the processor of recyclables in Knoxville stopped accepting single-stream recycling glass after the first of the year, as did most processing companies across the country. "The reason for this is twofold," Mr. McGill added. "Their equipment is being highly damaged by broken glass and co-mingled with colored glass, which has no market anymore. This is not a local issue - it is part of a national trend due to the regional nature of glass markets and related costs."

It's important to note that all other recyclable material is still being collected in the same way. There have been no other changes. Residents can also still drop off recyclable glass (clear, green or amber) at the Waste Connections Convenience Center on Warehouse Road. Just be sure to sort the glass by color.

We appreciate the community's cooperation with this update to the program. For additional information, you can contact Waste Connections of Tennessee at (865) 482-3656 or visit
Public Works employees came to the rescue of a cat late last month after it somehow got caught in the storm drain near Emerson and East Drive.

The photos below tell the story...

A resident taking an afternoon walk in the area heard meows coming from the storm drain. After investigating and spotting the cat inside, they called the Public Works department to see if they could send someone to lift the storm grate so the cat could get out Public Works dispatched their closest employee and he removed the grate, freeing the cat.  

We posted the photos on Facebook and were surprised to see the owner chime in on the conversation to let us know more. She told us his name is Odie. 

We responded to Mary, letting her know that Odie was a bit reluctant at first, but once he was out, he wandered away towards home like nothing had happened. We aren't sure how the cat got himself into the storm drain, but we're glad he's safe and sound!
The Recreation and Parks Department is offering several classes and events at the Civic Center's indoor pool this spring.

ORCA Swim Team:  Sign-ups for the Oak Ridge City Aquatics (ORCA) swim team are open through Tuesday, March 28, when the spring session begins. ORCA is open to anyone 5-18 years old and the only prerequisite is the ability to swim 25 yards unassisted. Practices are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. until 5 p.m. The swim team fee is $70 ($80 for those living outside of Oak Ridge). The season runs from March 28 through May 18, 2017.

Red Cross Swim Lessons: One session of Red Cross Swim Lessons remains this spring.  Registration for all swim classes will be accepted until the date of the first class (March 28). Here are the dates for the session:
  • March 28 - April 13 (Tues/Thurs)
    • 4 p.m. - 4:45 p.m. or 5 p.m. - 5:45 p.m.
Red Cross Lifeguard Certification Course:  Swimmers can also get their Red Cross Lifeguard Certification in April. The course is being offered on the following dates and times:
  • April 11, 13, 18, 19, 22, 25, 26, 27, & 29
    • Tues/Thurs: 4 p.m. - 6 p.m.
    • Wednesday: 2:15 p.m. - 4 p.m.
    • Saturday: 11 a.m. - 3 p.m.
There is limited space available for the lifeguard certification classes and the registration deadline is Monday, April 3, 2017. Prerequisites include being at least 15 years of age and the ability to pass the pre-swim test that will be held on the first day of class. Registration costs are $135, plus a $35 fee that will be paid online to the Red Cross. For those who do not reside in Oak Ridge, an additional $10 fee will apply.

Paddle Board YogaFit and Aqua Zumba Classes:  Also on the calendar this spring are Paddle Board YogaFit and Aqua Zumba. Both classes are already underway, but participants can join at any time. Aqua Zumba is held on Thursdays from 7 p.m. until 8 p.m. Cost per class is $4.25 for adults and $2.25 for seniors (age 65 and up). Paddle Board YogaFit classes are held on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 p.m. until 7 p.m. Boards are provided by the instructor and basic swimming skills are required. The cost is $15 per class. Bundled classes are offered.

The indoor pool is located inside the Civic Center at 1403 Oak Ridge Turnpike. If you have questions, please contact the Civic Center front desk by calling (865) 425-3450. You can also email Vonda Wooten, Recreation Manager of Aquatics, at .

Online registration and additional details for many of these activities are available at the following link:
The middle of March brought some cold weather and snow flurries to Oak Ridge, but thankfully we didn't see any major issues. The snow only accumulated in the higher elevations and we snapped some photos... Take a look.

City of Oak Ridge | |
200 South Tulane Ave
Oak Ridge, TN 37830