Parthenon, Nashville

4 out of 5 stars 4 Stars - 34 Reviews

Centennial Park, Nashville, TN 615-862-8431

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  • Parthenon
    by DaManley
  • Athena with Nike
    Athena with Nike
    by DaManley
  • Centennial Park sign with Parthenon in background
    Centennial Park sign with Parthenon in...
    by grandmaR
  • TravellerMel's Profile Photo

    The Parthenon in Centennial Park

    by TravellerMel Written Mar 8, 2009

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    Parthenon
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    The Parthenon, a full-scale replica of the one in Athens, Greece, was built largely out of plaster as a temporary exhibit building (the Nashville pavilion of the 1897 Centennial Exposition). It was saved from demolition by public sentiment and the nickles and dimes of school children and tourists, thus preserving this symbol of Nashville as the "Athens of the South". In the 1920s the temporary plaster building was replaced with a permanent, concrete and steel incarnation, which remains today. It functions primarily as an art gallery and houses a statue of Pallas Athena, said to be the largest indoor sculpture in the Western world, which was commissioned by the city and created by the renowned Nashville sculptor Alan LeQuire. Owing to the completeness and the multiple color surface painting (called polychrome), this replica is arguably closer to what the Athenians saw than are the current ruins in Athens.

    The Parthenon is open year round Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30. Additional hours during June, July & August: Sundays, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. The Parthenon is closed on July 4, Labor Day, the Thursday & Friday of Thanksgiving week, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and New Year's Day. Admission: Members free; Adults - $6.00; Children 4-17 - $3.50 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $3.50.

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    Why go all the way to Athens?

    by Bunsch Updated Nov 4, 2010

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    This just made me laugh...
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    As we drove from the airport to downtown Nashville, I was surprised to see signs directing us to the Parthenon. A few days later, we actually visited -- though on that particular occasion the innards were locked up tight, so I can't give you the benefit of a full experience in this note; it killed me to miss the "awe-inspiring 42 foot tall statue of Athena" inside. (It is, however, featured in the 2010 film, "Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief" and it certainly looks pretty awe-inspiring there!) It was enormous fun to walk around the exterior, however, admiring the workmanship. The Parthenon was originally built for the Centennial Exposition of 1897. It is the only exact replica of the ancient Greek temple, and also features art works from various permanent collections. The park surrounding the Parthenon is a lovely place to stroll, or play frisbee (which we did), fish or feed the ducks -- you'll see a family of Canada geese in one of the photos.

    Hours are Tuesday-Saturday, 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Admission for adults 18-61 is $5.00; children and those over 61 are $2.50.

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  • Yaqui's Profile Photo

    Parthenon~Structure

    by Yaqui Updated Sep 14, 2012

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    I have always wanted to see this since I was kid and to finally see it in person was fantastic. Seeing the structure was so fascinating. The inside is even better.

    The Nashville Parthenon was built on this site as the centerpiece of the Tennessee Centennial Exposition of 1897. The original full-scale replica was intended as a temporary exhibit structure and was constructed of brick, wood and plaster. The building quickly endeared itself to all Nashvillians who protested plans for the building's demolition at the close of the Centennial Celebration. The original building stood until 1921 at which time the City of Nashville began the reconstruction of the worn structure—this time with permanent materials. This building, the result of those efforts, was completed in 1931.

    The Parthenon was listed in the National Register of Historic Places on February 23, 1972.

    In 1987 the Metropolitan Board of Parks and Recreation undertook the rehabilitation of the interior of the Parthenon. The improvements include upgraded gallery space, a ground-level entrance and an elevator resulting in barrier-free accessibility to the entire facility for the first time.

    As in 1897 and 1931, these improvements, completed in 1988, are a gift of the people of Metropolitan Nashville and Davidson County and serve as a reminder of Nashville's longstanding reputation as the Athens of the South.

    Architect
    1897 - Colonel W.C. Smith
    1921 - Russell Hart
    1987 - Gresham, Smith and Partners Contractors
    1897 - Edward Laurent
    1921 - Foster and Creighton Company
    1987 - Alexander and Shankle Construction Company

    Please check the web site for changes:

    The Parthenon is open year round Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30. Additional hours during June, July & August: Sundays, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. The Parthenon is closed on Mondays year round. Admission: Members free; Adults - $6.00; Children 4-17 - $4.00 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $4.00 All credit and debit card transactions carry a 2.65 convenience fee.

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  • Yaqui's Profile Photo

    Parthenon~Athena

    by Yaqui Written Sep 14, 2012

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    Athena Parthenos is 41 feet, 10 inches tall. There are about 12 inches between the top of her helmet and the ceiling beams. Her weight is estimated at 12 tons. The statue of Nike, the goddess of victory, in Athena's right hand is 6 feet 4 inches tall. Nike holds a wreath of victory preparing to crown Athena.

    In the 1920s the Parthenon was rebuilt as a full-scale replica of the ancient Parthenon with one large exception. The colossal statue of Athena from ancient times was not in this replica. In 1982, the city commissioned Alan LeQuire to build a full-scale replica of Athena Parthenos. Soon after, a group of concerned citizens formed the Athena Fund. Starting with funds accumulated over the years from the nickels and dimes of school children and tourists, the Athena Fund grew rapidly through private and commercial donations.

    Pheidias, the greatest sculptor of classical antiquity, constructed the Athena Parthenos on a wooden framework with carved ivory for skin and a gold wardrobe. The statue was unveiled and dedicated in 438 or 437 B.C. We can depend on this date based on the building accounts of the temple. Other sources are equally important. For example, there are ancient authors, such as Pausanias, who referred to the Athena statue in writings. Athena appears on Athenian coins of the second and first centuries B.C. Later, Romans copied the statue in small-scale. Even today on the Acropolis you can see the outline of Athena's base on the floor of the Parthenon. All of this evidence is culminated in LeQuire's Athena.http://www.nashville.gov/Parthenon/Athena/index.asp

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    The Parthenon is open year round Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30. Additional hours during June, July & August: Sundays, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. The Parthenon is closed on Mondays year round. Admission: Members free; Adults - $6.00; Children 4-17 - $4.00 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $4.00 All credit and debit card transactions carry a 2.65 convenience fee.
    Address: 2600 West End Avenue, Nashville TN 37203.

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  • LisaAnnDow's Profile Photo

    The Parthenon

    by LisaAnnDow Written Nov 30, 2003

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    Take a trip back into the past at Nashville's replica of the greek Pathenon. In the 1800's the people of Nashville built an exact, full-sized replica of the Parthenon, including the worlds largest free-standing statue of the godess Athena, plated in gold.

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  • grishaV1's Profile Photo

    Greece in Nashville

    by grishaV1 Updated Sep 15, 2005

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    The Parthenon is a recreation of the one from ancient Greece, built in 1897 for the Centennial Exposition of Tennessee. There are many plaster replicas inside of the original works, plus its the most well known centre for art museum in the city, or area for that matter. It has a standing offering of master works from around the world, but also has temporary shows and exhibits from local artists. Its only maybe five minutes from downtown, straight shot down West End Avenue, and surrounded by Centennial Park which host many celebrations and festivals throughout the year.

    The Parthenon is closed on Mondays, Tues-Sat. 9am-4,30pm, and the pricing is very reasonable. 4,00 for adults over 18, then 2,50 for children and seniors over 62. Very imporant to know, they do not allow food, drink, gum and backpacks! I always have my backpack, and I didn´t know so I had to take it back to the car. They have special tours for visually impaired, and like me, hearing impaired. Best not to take fotos inside also, they have postcards, etc. available. Its why I only have outside foto.

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  • Yaqui's Profile Photo

    Parthenon~Photo Gallery

    by Yaqui Written Sep 14, 2012

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    Within the Parthenon structure is some much wonderful galleries and artifacts. The photo gallery is excellent source of the Parthenon history and plus they let you take photos' here. Once you enter the other gallery your not allowed photography.

    Please check the web site for changes:

    The Parthenon is open year round Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30. Additional hours during June, July & August: Sundays, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. The Parthenon is closed on Mondays year round. Admission: Members free; Adults - $6.00; Children 4-17 - $4.00 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $4.00 All credit and debit card transactions carry a 2.65 convenience fee.

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  • travelmad478's Profile Photo

    The Parthenon

    by travelmad478 Written Apr 5, 2003

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    It's pretty weird, but there is a full-scale concrete replica of the Parthenon in Nashville's Centennial Park. This was originally built as a temporary structure for the 1897 Tennessee Centennial, but became so popular that it was rebuilt as a permanent fixture in the 1920s. There's an art museum inside. For me, the best part of this experience was getting to sit on the lawn outside the Parthenon and eat barbecued ribs from Hog Heaven next door (see my tip in Restaurants). Bet you can't do THAT in Athens!

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    Back to the Future

    by grandmaR Written Apr 10, 2011

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    1956 photo of the Parthanon
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    I had been reviewing my father's pictures and there was a picture of the Parthenon in Nashville. I did not realize at the time that this was built because Nashville thought of itself as the "Athens of the South".

    I wanted to go on a tour of the city but the tour people were so un-helpful that I just decided to go to the two placed I knew I wanted pictures of (the Parthenon and the capitol) and take pictures and then leave. I really didn't want to go in - just take a photo of the outside. So the next morning (which was Sunday), we started off early and drove to Centennial Park and then headed for the Hermitage.

    The Parthenon is open year round Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30. Additional hours during June, July & August: Sundays, 12:30 - 4:30 p.m. The Parthenon is closed on Mondays year round. Admission: Members free; Adults - $6.00; Children 4-17 - $4.00 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $4.00 All credit and debit card transactions carry a 2.65% convenience fee.

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  • OlenaKyiv's Profile Photo

    The building

    by OlenaKyiv Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    The Partheon, Nashville, TN


    The Parthenon is possibly one of large attractions of Nashville located in Centennial Park in downtown. This is the only full-scale replica of the Greek Parthenon in existence with 42-foot statue of Athena. The lower level of the Parthenon is used as an art gallery.

    Read more about the Pantheon history in General tips.

    The Parthenon is open
    Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 - 4:30;
    also on Sunday, 12:30 - 4:30 during June, July and August.

    Admission:
    Adults - $5.00; Children 4-17 - $2.50 (under 4 free); Seniors 62+ - $2.50.

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  • Ewingjr98's Profile Photo

    Centennial Park and the Parthenon

    by Ewingjr98 Written Jun 5, 2009

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    Centennial Park is a 132 acre park that was originally developed as the state fair grounds. For the Tennessee Centennial and International Exposition in 1897, the grounds were developed with various buildings for state and country pavilions. Nashville's pavillion for the fair was a temporary replica of the Greek Parthenon. The temporary Parthenon was reconstructed from 1920 to 1931, and it still stands today as an art gallery. This is the world's only full-size replica of the Parthenon, and its 42-foot tall statue of Athena is the largest indoor statue in the world. The man-made Lake Watauga was also created for the fair and still exists today next to the Parthenon.

    Today the Parthenon is the city of Nashville's largest art gallery.

    Centennial Park is located on the west side of Nashville. The Parthenon is visible from many point within the park. Entrance to the park is free, and the Parthenon costs $6 for adults.

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  • Rabbityama's Profile Photo

    The Parthenon

    by Rabbityama Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Statue of Athena
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    Located in Centennial Park, Nashville's Parthenon is an exact replica of the original Parthenon in Athens, Greece. Nashville, once called the Athens of the West, built the Parthenon in 1897. Since then, they've also added a replica of the statue of Athena, which is not even in Athens! The cost to enter is $5.00 for adults, $2.50 for senior citizens and ages 6-17, children under 6 are free. If you have a group of ten or more people, you may have a guided tour, but you must make reservations at least a week before you arrive. If it's possible, I highly suggest taking advantage of this! The guides are very knowledgable about the Parthenon, both in Athens and Nashville, and the history behind it. If you cannot get a guided tour, they offer pamphlets with information for a self-guided tour, and museum staff should be around. If you cannot get a tour, try to talk to the staff. It will make your trip to the Parthenon much more fun, and you'll learn so much more!

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  • terps94's Profile Photo

    A Greek sight in the South

    by terps94 Updated Jun 16, 2006

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    So there I was driving aimlessly around the city and next thing you know there's a sign for " The Parthenon" I said this I got to see. So I made a hasty right turn and after being glared at for erratic driving I find myself at the Centennial Park where the Parthenon is located.
    This replica was built initially as temporary exhibit for the 1897 Centennial Exposition but the Nashville citizens was so enamored by it that thru the years they replace it with more permanent structure.
    This scale replica has a small gallery in the first floor and on the second floor they have the statue of "Athena" along with other sculptures. When I went here there was a lady that work in the 2nd floor who was very knowledgeable about the PArthenon and the Greek history so if you have any question, fire away. There was a $5 fee for the exhibit inside.

    If you just want to relax for the day find a bench or a table or even bring a lawn chair and just lounge in the beautiful manicured lawn of Centennial Park

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    Centennial Park

    by DrewV Written Jun 13, 2003

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    Nashville has a number of terrific green spaces in its city limits. Percy and Edwin Warner is the biggest. Radnor Lake is the best (see General Tips). Centennial Park is the one you'll see as a tourist.

    Built for the Centennial Exposition of 1896 to honour Tennessee's one hundredth anniversary, the park still has that glorious fin-de-siecle feel to it. Heightening the appeal is the perfect replica of the Parthenon which looms over the center of the park.

    The Parthenon, designed to show Nashville's claim to be "Athens of the South" (due to the large number of colleges and universities), was so popular during the exposition that it was made permanent. Now, it holds an art collection, a 42 foot tall statue of Athena, and original plaster castings of the Elgin marbles (even the Greeks don't have those!). It's worth a stop, if for nothing else than to see how we Nashvillians view our city.

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  • OlenaKyiv's Profile Photo

    Athena Parthenos

    by OlenaKyiv Updated Apr 4, 2011

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    Athena, The Parthenon, Nashville
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    Athena Parthenos is 41 feet, 10 inches tall. There are about 12 inches between the top of her helmet and the ceiling beams. Her weight is estimated at 12 tones.
    Her statue is really impressive, although, I think, quite ugly. Well, this is how ancient Greeks saw their goddess. It is nothing to do with my artistic tastes.

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