Rick Ridgeway, a renowned mountaineer and leader of the apparel company Patagonia, will visit Knoxville to address a crowd in October at Legacy Parks Foundation’s Legacy Luncheon for the Parks. A seasoned traveler and adventurer, Ridgeway will feel right at home in a city that embraces outdoor adventure and hosts world-class recreation.

Ridgeway is best know for being the first American to summit K2, the worlds second-highest mountain, and without supplemental oxygen at that. He has established new routes in the Peruvian Andes, made the first direct coast-to-coast traverse of Borneo, and climbed with the original Seven Summits expeditions on a mission to summit each of the seven continent’s highest peaks, to name a few of his successful expeditions.

Ridgeway not only pushes the limits of American adventure, but also uses his encounters with avalanches, rock fall, and precarious situations presented by nature to inform his innovative leadership strategies at Patagonia. He is the vice president of environmental affairs and works with his team to progress Patagonia as a leader in stewardship of the world’s natural resources.

His visit to Knoxville is a natural fit, as he will join Legacy Parks Foundation to celebrate a year of accomplishments and future plans for the creation and preservation of our recreation opportunities. Legacy Parks Foundation is a non-profit foundation that raises land and money to expand parks, trails, greenways, water access and open space in East Tennessee. The result of its work has been $4 million poured into these natural resources, more than 500 acres of parkland added in Knox County, and the conservation of 1,000 plus acres of natural space, giving access to high-quality outdoor experiences for residents and visitors to the region.

Knoxville is quickly becoming recognized as a national outdoor destination because of these growing outdoor amenities and the collaborative outdoors community that helps bring these places to life. With fifty miles of trail in the heart of the city and more parks than you can visit in a week, even the most avid adventurers are adding Knoxville to their lists.

Our position at the foothills of the Great Smoky Mountains and the diverse terrain throughout town provides a beautiful natural foundation that makes for a very special place to get out and play. And with plans to continue the expansion and protection of our outdoor spaces and encouragement from Rick Ridgeway, a leader in American adventure and industry, Knoxville is going full speed ahead to fulfill its growing reputation for excellent outdoor recreation. For more information about outdoor adventures in Knoxville visit outdoorknoxville.com.