Social Activities in Nashville (That You Haven’t Heard About)
When you look into traveling to Nashville, you inevitably come across a familiar batch of popular recommendations. Virtually everyone who visits — particularly if it’s for the first time — wants to visit a few trendy bars, see some (likely country) music at a famous venue, try the hot chicken, and visit a few music museums. Others who may want to explore the area a little bit more might also look into options like the Mammoth Cave National Park, or a visit to Abraham Lincoln’s childhood home, or perhaps a nearby resort for a bit of peace and quiet. Certainly, all of these are among the best things to do in and around this one-of-a-kind city! With that said however, sometimes a place can be so well known for a few attractions (or types of attractions) that other great options go overlooked. And the truth is there is a lot to do in and around Nashville — particularly on the social front — aside from the highlights listed above. With that in mind, we’re going to point out just a few more things you might be interested in around the city. Breakfast Feasting We mentioned the famous hot chicken above, and it’s unquestionably the main food- or drink-related attraction in Nashville. Plenty expect a lot of the bars however (from craft brews to authentic southern bourbon), and the coffee shops in town have a bit of a reputation as well. What you don’t hear as much about — but should absolutely look into — is the breakfast! There are several vaunted breakfast options around town that some visitors will ultimately refer to as their best eating or drinking experiences in Nashville. The most notable is perhaps the Loveless Cafe. It’s a southern-style, old-school sort of diner with a simple but delicious menu, and an aesthetic that calls back to its early-‘50s roots. If you’re looking for something a little more sweet than savory though, make sure you take a trip to The Pancake Pantry as well. It’s another older establishment that has perfected the pancake and thrived for decades. Watching Baseball When it comes to the sports scene in and around Nashville, baseball is something of an afterthought as far as most visitors are concerned. The NFL’s Tennessee Titans and the NHL’s Nashville Predators are the biggest teams in town, and a lot of attention goes to the football and basketball programs at the University of Tennessee in Knoxville as well. But if you’re looking for a fun social activity, it’s always hard to beat minor league baseball. The Nashville Sounds are an affiliate of the MLB’s LA Angels and play dozens of home games in town every summer. The stadium may be relatively small, and it may not be the highest level of professional sport, but it’s a lot of fun with the right group. These games are a great excuse to hang out in an intimate but pretty ballpark, have a few drinks and snacks with friends, and just enjoy some good weather — even if you’re not a huge baseball fan.
Pottery Making & Painting Pottery doesn’t really seem like a modern hobby, but it’s actually more common than you might think. Most major cities these days have pottery studios; there are YouTube pottery instructors with tens of thousands of subscribers; and even some celebrities are known to enjoy the hobby! Seth Rogen discusses his ceramics publicly, for instance, and Brad Pitt’s interest in pottery was cited just recently in an article on movie star side hobbies (which also blew our mind by letting us know that Will Smith and Tom Cruise are avid fencers!). Not a bad couple of celebrities to emulate, right? Well, it just so happens that pottery is actually a pretty accessible social activity in Nashville! There are actually a few different studios where you can set up a sort of party for a group of friends, either to make pottery yourself or to paint existing pieces together. In particular, Brush Fire Pottery’s BYOB adult party option makes for a really fun time out in town. Outer Space Yoga If you want to try something really unique, you’ll want to look up the evening events at Nashville’s beloved Adventure Science Center. This is primarily a sort of interactive science adventure for families, with lots of activities that are meant for a younger audience. But there are a few events specifically for adults as well, and the special yoga sessions are the most special among them. To be clear, they don’t call it “Outer Space Yoga.” But that’s more or less what it looks and feels like. The Science Center invites people to participate in group yoga sessions in its planetarium, with vast expanses of stars displayed vibrantly overhead. It’s a dream-like experience for those who like to let go and relax, and it can be oddly social even in relative silence. Then again, for those who would prefer a bit more interaction, the Science Center also hosts events during which adults can enjoy some interactive displays and partake of local food trucks and craft beer as well. Foster Falls Swimming Okay, so this isn’t necessarily a social activity in the sense that you’re not exactly walking into the crowd. But if you have your own crowd — for a bachelorette or bachelor party, a couples’ getaway, a reunion with college friends, etc. — swimming at Foster Falls is a really fun option just a little ways outside of town. You might actually be interested to know, if you’re visiting Tennessee, that the state has a number of well-known swimming holes frequented by travelers and locals alike when the weather is good. But Foster Falls — a sort of rocky lagoon beneath a natural waterfall — is particularly accessible. It’s nestled within South Cumberland State Park, roughly 90 miles outside of town on a straight drive along I-24. Once you’re there, you need only follow a trail a short distance into the park before you get to the swimming area. We hope these ideas have given you a bit more to think about for a visit to Nashville! The city’s highlights are well known for good reason, but there are plenty of ways to socialize in town without just playing the hits.