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OUR MISSION

Dogwood Arts promotes & celebrates the art, culture and natural beauty of our region.

Dogwood Arts has a 65-year history of arts advocacy, environmental stewardship, and economic impact in East Tennessee. With the financial support of corporate sponsors, grant funding, local government investment, and private donors, we produce 20 year-round events and programs that help make Knoxville a great place to live, work and play.

HISTORY

In 1947, New York newspaper reporter John  Gunther, came into town, checked out the area, then returned to New York and wrote “Knoxville is the ugliest city I ever saw in America, with the possible exception of some mill towns in New England. Its main street is called Gay Street; this seemed to me to be a misnomer.”  Thus, in 1955, members of the Knoxville Garden Club, led by Betsey Creekmore, Martha Ashe and Betsy Goodson, along with a group of concerned citizens with a vision began a civic beautification project… the Dogwood Trails.

Dogwood Arts Milestones:

  • 1955:  Dogwood Trails are established

  • 1961:  First Dogwood Arts Festival

  • 1970:  Bob Hope appears at Festival

  • 1972:  Elvis Presley performs at Stokley Athletics Center

  • 1977:  First Limited Edition Print

  • 1978:  House & Garden Show established

  • 1979:  A Very Special Arts Festival established

  • 2009:  Bazillion Blooms and Chalk Walk established

  • 2010:  Dogwood Arts Festival celebrates 50 years

  • 2014: 60th Anniversary of the Dogwood Trails

  • 2018: 40th Anniversary of the House & Garden Show

  • 2018: 10th Anniversary of Chalk Walk

  • 2018: 10th Anniversary of Bazillion Blooms

  • 2019: 10th Anniversary of Rhythm N’ Blooms

  • 2020: Celebrating 65 Years of the Dogwood Trails

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TAKE A LOOK BACK

A history of the Dogwood Arts Festival through the lens of the Knoxville News Sentinel