What: Outdoor Chattanooga winter workshops.

When: 6-7:30 p.m. Thursdays (through March 29).

Where: Outdoor Chattanooga, 200 River St.

Admission: Free (a fee may be charged for selected workshops).

Phone: 643-6888.


Outdoor Chattanooga is hoping to bring in some new blood this winter.

A series of workshops has been planned, and Philip Grymes, executive director of the organization, said such programs are often a way to draw people who might not generally be attracted to Outdoor Chattanooga's offerings.

"In the wintertime, we find people tend to get a little bit of cabin fever," Grymes said, "so the workshops have been great at bringing people out."

Workshops begin next week and run Thursday nights through March 29. The series kicks off with a program titled "Accessorize You and Your Bicycle for Winter." Instructors James Eubank and Patrick Morin will discuss how to dress yourself and your bike for warmth and safety in the winter. Topics will include lights, fenders, tires and toe warmers.

"We try to introduce new things every winter and try to keep some that were really popular," said Grymes.

Anything having to do with cooking, he said, tends to be very well received.

On Jan. 26, for example, herbalist Holli Richey of the Center for Integrative Medicine will run a workshop on how to identify and eat weeds from one's own backyard.

"They're so available all over in our yards," Richey said of midwinter greens such as chickweed, yellowdock and dandelion greens, each of which provides various health benefits. She noted that plants grown naturally, rather than cultivated, are often more nutrient dense. And, she said, "they're not bad-tasting."

For those inclined toward different types of adventure, other workshops include one on cave ethics, a bat habitat instructional and a workshop on wooden boat building.

"That tends to be more of a craft person's workshop and not so much a raw outdoor enthusiast's," Grymes said.

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