Mardi Growl Parade to Liven Up Downtown Knoxville

Knoxville's streets to close for Mardi Growl pet parade and festival.
Public Safety

The streets of downtown Knoxville are set to come alive with the vibrant colors and joyful energy of the 17th annual Mardi Growl Parade and Festival on Saturday, March 2, 2024. Hosted by the Young-Williams Animal Center, this much-anticipated event will bring together pet lovers and their furry friends for a celebration that promises fun for all ages.

To accommodate the parade and festival, certain roads and on-street parking spaces between the Old City and World’s Fair Park will be temporarily closed. Notably, Willow Avenue will see on-street parking restrictions beginning at 6 p.m. on Friday, March 1, and will be entirely closed to traffic from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, March 2. Additional road closures along the parade route will be in effect on Saturday morning, with all roads expected to reopen by 12:30 p.m.

The parade is scheduled to start at 11 a.m. from Willow Avenue, making its way through downtown Knoxville, and culminating at the World’s Fair Park Performance Lawn. Spectators are encouraged to gather along the sidewalks to enjoy the procession, which will feature a wide array of costumed pets and their owners, showcasing the spirit of the community and the strong bond between humans and animals.

Following the parade, attendees can look forward to a festival filled with activities, including vendor booths, food trucks, live music, and games. The event not only serves as a celebration of pets and their owners but also as an important fundraiser for the Young-Williams Animal Center, supporting their mission to find homes for pets in need and provide essential services to the community.

Event organizers are reminding participants to be mindful of their pets and the environment during the festivities. Attendees are asked to bring plastic bags from home to clean up after their pets and ensure that waste is disposed of properly in trash containers, not recycling carts.

For more information about the Mardi Growl Parade and Festival, including how to participate or support the Young-Williams Animal Center, visit

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