Plan Your Visit
Park Manager Mike Cole receives the American Planning Association’s recognition of Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park as one of the United States’ Top 10 Great Public Spaces for 2011 from APA representative Lisa Milligan on Oct. 18 during a celebration at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. Learn more.
New Civil War Exhibit in Visitor CenterA new Civil War exhibit, Tennessee - Struggle for the Heartland 1861-1865, is now open to the public at Bicentennial Mall’s Visitor Center as part of Tennessee’s Sesquicentennial Celebration. The exhibit is free and open to the public during normal Visitor Center operating hours.
For more information on Tennessee’s Sesquicentennial Celebration, please visit www.tnvacation.com/civil-war/events.
The Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park is located in the shadow of the State Capitol in downtown Nashville. The 19-acre park is designed to complement the Tennessee Capitol Building, give visitors a taste of Tennessee's history and natural wonders, and to serve as a lasting monument to Tennessee's Bicentennial celebration.
Current Status of Fountains
The May 2010 floods caused quite a bit of damage to the park, including to the fountains, park office and other structures. The first order of business was to restore the basic functions of the park -- namely, the park office. In addition to repairing the damage to the fountains following the flood, we learned that the fountains must also be redesigned to incorporate new health code standards. While we have started the redesign process, we do not anticipate the fountains will be restored during the 2011 season. We appreciate your patience during the park's ongoing flood recovery and repairs. We will continue to update the website as we receive new information.
2012 First Hike on January 1 - To kick off the year-long celebration of Tennesssee State Parks' 75th Anniversary, Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park will be hosting a "First Hike" program on January 1, 2012 to encourage an active, healthy lifestyle in the new year by enjoying the recreational treasures found in our Tennessee State Parks. This "First Hike" will be a walking tour of the park and Capitol building grounds, focusing on important "Firsts" of Tennessee History. Please contact Cara Alexander at 615-741-5771 for more information and to sign up.
Park ProgramsPark Rangers provide interpretive tours of the park, historical presentations in period dress and off-site programs by reservation. Topics illustrate Tennessee’s rich history from early settlement days to present time. To schedule an interpretive tour, presentation or off-site program, please call 615-741-5771.
Meeting RoomsAdjacent to the park, Nashville Farmers' Market has a meeting room that is available for booking, capable of seating up to 25 people. For reservations, pricing, and information please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 615-880-2001.
Picnic PavilionsPicnic tables located under the train trestle are on a first-come first-serve basis.
RestaurantsNashville Farmers' Market is located next to the park and houses a selection of locally owned and operated restaurants and shops inside its Market House, open year-round. Also, food & beverages are available from a variety of local merchants in outdoor sheds, particularly during May-November peak growing season.
RestroomsRestrooms are available under the train trestle.
Historical SignificanceWith the urban building boom in downtown Nashville during the late 1950s and early 1960s, the Tennessee State Capitol disappeared from sight on the east, west and south sides. The northern side of the Capitol was not conducive to the construction of skyscrapers due to the swampy conditions that existed in many areas between the Capitol and the Cumberland River. Ironically, the historic French Lick that attracted wildlife, Indians, trappers and settlers to what would become Nashville also preserved the remaining view of the Capitol and became the home of the Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park. In order to save the one remaining view of the Capitol and to commemorate Tennessee's 200th birthday, the concept of a mall similar to the one in Washington, DC, took shape.
Here are some historical features to look for when you visit Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park:
Tour BusesTour buses are welcome at the park.
HonorsThe Nashville Business Journal 2006 Book of Lists ranks Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park as Nashville's #1 Tourist Attraction.
On Oct. 3, 2011, Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park was designated as one of the Top 10 Great Public Spaces in the U.S. for the American Planning Association’s 2011 Great American Places Program. Learn more.