Oak Ridge is a city in Tennessee. Oak Ridge was created as secret city during World War II as part of the Manhattan Project. In Oak Ridge, thousands worked in secrecy to enrich the uranium used in the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki Japan. The city is no longer secret, but it has a rich history worth exploring, and a strong bent toward science and technology. Oak Ridge is Appalachia and the nuclear age rolled into one, a great city to check out.
When Oak Ridge was first built by the US government, there were only two entries and exits from the city due to the desired isolation of the secret Manhattan Project. In later years, several other entrances were built, but Oak Ridge is still fairly disconnected from surrounding towns.
By the Interstate, Southbound I-75 and westbound I-40 converge in the middle of Knoxville. Continuing on I-40, proceed west until the northbound Pellissippi Parkway exit. Pellissippi merges into Illinois Avenue, which leads into downtown Oak Ridge.
Oak Ridge was designed by the government, so the layout of the town is fairly simple, almost utilitarian - in some neighbourhoods, the streets are even in alphabetical order. Having a car is almost necessary, as the city is quite sparsely laid-out. There is virtually no public transportation.
American Museum of Science and Energy, 300 South Tulane Ave, ☎ +1-865-576-3200, . Monday-Saturday 9:00-17:00, Sunday 13:00-17:00. This museum has several exhibits. Primarily it is dedicated to explaining Oak Ridge's role in furthering the WWII-era Manhattan Project. There is also a temporary exhibit on Snoopy, who in his younger days dreamed of being a pilot. Also, there are various scientific toy puzzles and a gift shop.(36.01035,-84.257863)edit
The Children's Museum, 461 West Outer Drive, ☎ +1-865-482-1074, . Monday-Friday 9:00-17:00, seasonal Saturday hours. edit
International Friendship Bell, Badger Avenue (About half a mile west of the American Museum of Science and Energy.), . 24/7. The first monument between a U.S. Manhattan Project city and Japan, the bell serves as an expression of hope for everlasting peace.Free. (36.011296,-84.262755)edit
Images Studio, 109 Towne Road (Located in Greenwich Village Mall, a small strip mall. Next to Locally Grown.), ☎ +1-865-483-9115. Monday 10:00-16:00, Tuesday-Friday 10:00-17:50, Saturday 10:00-14:00. This small art gallery has various paintings, post cards, and other locally-produced arts, crafts, and jewelry.(36.029158,-84.238706)edit
Corner Gallery, 106 Randolph Road, Oak Ridge, TN 37830-5052 (In the Grove Shopping Center.), ☎ +1-865-482-0559, . Closed Saturday and Sunday.. This large art store has various paintings, wood block prints, postcards, magnets, and pottery from local artists. The store is scheduled to close at the end of July, 2010.(36.014355,-84.26577)edit
Locally Grown Artists Gallery, 109 Towne Rd., Oak Ridge, TN (Greenwich Mall, next to the Soup Kitchen Restaurant). tues-fri. 11-5, sat. 11-2. Locally grown Artists gallery is a coop of over 20 local artists and craftsmen. The gallery features unique items crafted by hand by local and regional craftsmen, including jewelry, ceramics, wooden items, textiles, glass, photography, paintings, and many other unique items that will not be found elsewhere.edit
Centennial Golf Course, 101 Centennial Blvd, ☎ +1-865-483-2291, . Beautiful publicly-owned golf course designed by Billy Casper. Centennial offers 18 challenging holes. Collared shirt required to play.edit
Secret City Scenic Excursion Train, Hwy. 58, East Tennessee Technology Park, ☎ +1-865-241-2140, . Closed in winter. Ride the Atomic Train on a 12-mile tour through the once secret K-25 Manhattan Project site.edit
Oak Ridge Playhouse, Historic Jackson Square. Largest theater venue in Oak Ridgeedit
Big Ed's Pizza, 101 Broadway, ☎ +1-865-482-4885. Monday-Saturday 11:00-23:30. One of Oak Ridge's strongest traditions. At Big Ed's the pizzas are made out front of the customers. The pizza slices are thin, floppy, gooey and hot, served on paper plates. The only restroom is in the basement, which is inconvenient for handicapped customers.edit
Buffalo Mountain Grill, 205 Oak Ridge Turnpike, ☎ +1-865-481-0515. Standard American restaurant and bar. Small selection of beers and liquors.edit
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