Representatives from the Tennessee Clean Water Network, the City of Knoxville and PetSafe today took a ceremonial first pour to dedicate the new TCWN Water Bottle Refill Station on Market Square.
The new station is part of TCWN’s Bringing Tap Back Project, a program designed to encourage individuals to substitute one sugary beverage a day with a glass of clean, refreshing tap water. The program is being funded through the largest grant ever given by the Tennessee Department of Health’s Project Diabetes.
“Obesity and diabetes rates are very high in Tennessee, and the Bringing Tap Back program is a unique effort to get citizens to drink more water to improve their health,” said TCWN Executive Director Renee Hoyos. “TCWN is installing similar water bottle refills stations in other Knoxville locations and in cities across Tennessee.”
“TCWN appreciates the cooperation of Mayor Rogero and others in the city administration in helping to located and install these water bottle refill stations. As we work to make Knoxville a green, more sustainable city, it is important to consider addressing public health issues as an important part of that effort,” Hoyos added.
Knoxville Mayor Madeline Rogero participated in the dedication ceremony. “Public water stations are an environmentally friendly way to help everybody stay hydrated – even dogs! Thanks to TCWN and the state Department of Health for taking the lead on Bringing Tap Back,” Mayor Rogero said about the new water bottle refill station.
Hoyos also thanked the employees of PetSafe in Knoxville for funding the dog bowls that are attached to six of the Knoxville-area water bottle refill stations. “Studies show people exercise when they have a dog. So, our friends at PetSafe stepped up and provided $5,000 for the dog bowls at six locations. It is great to have community partners like PetSafe that leverage the public investment with private funds to better serve the community,” Hoyos added.
Other water bottle refill stations in the Knoxville area include:
- South Knoxville Elementary School
- Sarah More Green Elementary School
- Green Magnet Academy
- Lonsdale Elementary School
- Norwood Elementary School
- Pond Gap Elementary School
- Vine Middle Magnet School
- University of Tennessee-Knoxville
Parks and Public Facilities:
- Victor Ashe Park
- Ijams Nature Center
- Tyson Park
- Krutch Park
- Harriett Tubman Park
- Ashley Nicole Dream Playground
- Vestal Boys and Girls Club
- Christenberry Recreation Center
- Knoxville Area Transit Station
- Market Square
Several of the water bottle refills stations in the Knoxville area are decorated by art wraps created by local artists. Brenda Willis created the wrap for the Market Square and Ijams stations, Adrienne Schwarte created the wrap for the station in Victor Ashe Park and Denise Sanabria designed the wrap for the stations in Harriett Tubman Park and Tyson Park.
Other Tennessee cities targeted to get TCWN water bottle refill stations are Nashville, Memphis, Jackson, Chattanooga, Johnson City, Athens and Manchester.
More information on the Bringing Tap Back Project is available at the TCWN website, www.tcwn.org/Bringing-Tap-Back.