Yesterday was my first visit to the observation deck at the Sunsphere, located at 810 Clinch Avenue in Knoxville, Tennessee. Built in 1982 for the World’s Fair, the structure stands 266 feet tall, weighs 600 tons and has windows that are layered in 24-karat gold dust. It’s interior circular viewing platform can accommodate a maximum of 86 visitors, with informational displays providing descriptions of the Sunsphere and surrounding area.

Entry is free and an elevator (no stairs) transports people up to floor “L4”. Full panoramic, expansive views of the city and landscape – Tennessee River, Smoky Mountains, Cumberland Mountains – offer guests a pleasant experience. Plan to spend a minimum of five minutes visiting this landmark, though take as long as you’d like to observe the area and/or read associated historical materials.

Regarding photography, though, one can expect to capture structural supports in most pictures, and, due to the gold-colored glass, interior photographs will likely retain a green hue. Also, based on the spheric design, I suspect that keeping the exterior window surfaces washed is very difficult – some were dirty.

Note: if you or someone in your group is a Senior Citizen or simply may need to rest, please be advised that there are no seats (or restrooms) available. So, remember to bring a walker that has a seat, or, alternatively, a collapsible campsite (tripod) chair.

Parking

I parked a few blocks from the Sunsphere at the Locust Street Garage. There’s a convenient ‘skywalk’ near parking, which allows walkers to bypass Henley Street and leads directly to the Convention Center. The cost for parking is $8 for two hours or less. After that, it’s $12.

Fine Art America

One more thing. If you’d be interested in a new print for your home or office, I’ve added the following picture to my gallery at Fine Art America. Stop by to select from a variety of available print types – framed, canvas, art, wood, metal and/or acrylic!

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