City, Nonprofits Celebrate Afterschool Programs Oct. 26

Communications Director

Kristin Farley
[email protected]
(865) 215-2589

400 Main St., Room 691
Knoxville, TN 37902

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City, Nonprofits Celebrate Afterschool Programs Oct. 26

Posted: 10/24/2023
In honor of Lights On Afterschool Day on Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023, the City of Knoxville's Parks and Recreation department joins United Way of Greater Knoxville and several youth-serving community groups in efforts to draw attention to the valuable afterschool programs that keep our children safe and active after the school bell rings.  

Lights On Afterschool Day is a national day of recognition for afterschool programs and the important role they play in our communities.  

"Afterschool programs and activities support our young people and families," says City of Knoxville Parks and Recreation Director Sheryl Ely. "High quality opportunities for young people to play and learn in a safe environment after school are crucial to helping working parents and strengthening our neighborhoods."  

On Oct. 26, the Parks and Recreation team will treat the approximately 400 youth who participate in its 10 community centers' afterschool programs to a special event with candy, activities and entertainment.  

Knoxville Mayor Indya Kincannon will issue a proclamation establishing Oct. 26, 2023, as Lights On Afterschool Day in Knoxville. In addition, the lights of the downtown pedestrian bridge downtown will be Lights On Afterschool colors, yellow and blue.  

“As we celebrate Lights On Afterschool Day in Knoxville, we shine a light on the critical role afterschool programs play in the lives of our children and families,” said Ellie Kittrell, United Way of Greater Knoxville director of early care and education systems.  

“United Way of Greater Knoxville unites our community to ensure afterschool is accessible for all," Kittrell adds "That is one of many reasons we have supported the Knoxville Area Afterschool Network for more than a decade and continue the work through initiatives like Community Schools and the East Tennessee Collaborative. We work tirelessly to protect and expand afterschool programs, illuminating the path to a brighter future for our youth.”

Area non-profits hosting or holding Lights On Afterschool Day events or programs for their participants and families include Wesley House Community Center, YWCA Phyllis Wheatley, Kids Place Inc, SHADES and YMCA locations, Boys and Girls Clubs, Centro Hispano and Shora Foundation.

Visit to learn more about the City's afterschool programs.