The common misconception many new college students, visitors and new community members have is that there is nothing to do in Martin. I once believed this myself. Martin is located in a rural community at least one hour away from any big city. This place can become a culture shock to those individuals from large cities with lots of events, activities and shopping. This is not to say that Martin has nothing to offer its students and community members. The city, university and community have a lot of activities to offer just in Martin, but people have to be willing and open to accepting this town as their own.
UTM keeps a regular flow of events going throughout the year. The next big campus event is the UTM Rodeo. This event brings a huge amount of tourism to the Martin community. The 2015 rodeo is planned to be bigger and better than ever. After last year’s national championship team, the hype and support is planned to continue.
The City of Martin also contributes to the event pool through the Tennessee Soybean Festival in September, which brings thousands of new and old visitors to Martin each year. The Soybean Festival provides a doorway for UTM students to get a feel for the community around them. Besides the concerts, the Soybean Festival hosts children’s events, 5Ks, luncheons, carnivals and much more. These events are just the tip of the iceberg in the grand scheme of events to occur in 2015.
In March alone, there were numerous community and city events to attend. Some of these events included the St. Patrick’s Day parade, Pub Crawl, Garden Seminar, basketball games, Tennessee Freedom Exhibit, City Wide Cleanup, Igniting Innovation Event, Special Olympics 5k, UTM Volleyball Trivia Night, music recitals through the UTM Department of Music, City of Martin Easter Egg Hunt and the numerous outdoor activities that are available to the public through the Martin Parks and Recreation Department. These events are usually free and created for the public. The Martin Business Association also provides a mobile app that includes business listing, coupons, community announcements and event listings. The app event calendar is filled with UTM events, city events and have then been separated by date of occurrence. The app links the community to the local businesses.
The notion that there is nothing to do in Martin is an false one. The Martin community is vibrant and open to students and visitors. The simple download of an app or a quick internet search can get you involved and informed of the world around you. Martin might not be the Nashville or Memphis of our dreams, but it is a safe, fun, inviting and unexpected place to explore and open our eyes to new possibilities.