Things to Do in Chattanooga: January

A brand-new year calls for fresh starts, celebrations, and plenty of events around Chattanooga to keep you busy – and maybe even keep you on track with your 2023 resolutions! Explore the city’s cultural scene, jump in a freezing lake, make some mocktails, and more this month. Check out our favorite January events below.

The Whiskey Run

January 1

Start 2023 off on the right foot by signing up for The Whiskey Run! Participants can choose between a half-marathon, 10K, and 5K, with awards to be presented to the top three participants – male and female – in each age group and overall. Stick around after the race and enjoy Be Caffeinated coffee, Tasty Donuts, and, of course, a whiskey sampling.


Dry January: Mocktails 101

January 4

If you’re hoping to abstain from alcohol in the New Year, this offering at The Chattery is for you. Mocktails 101 is a demonstration-style class that explores using fresh fruit, teas, and fermented goodness to create the perfect mocktail. All attendees will receive samples of three mocktails, plus recipes to use in the future. The class starts at 6 p.m. at 1800 Rossville Avenue, Suite 108.

Freeze Your Half Off

January 7

Presented by Run Chattanooga, Freeze Your Half Off is a half-marathon, 10K, and 5K that showcases the beautiful Tennessee River … in the middle of January. Registration is available online, and the fee includes entry into your desired race, online results, swag, aid station goodies, and a medal. All races start at 9 a.m. from 4301 Amnicola Highway.

Lookout Wild Film Festival 2023

January 12-15

For over a decade, the Lookout Wild Film Festival has brought the best outdoor adventure and conservation films – both local and international – to the Scenic City. The Walker Theatre will host this highly anticipated weekend. Dozens of films are on the docket, including titles like Facing Goliath, If You Give a Beach a Bottle, Rural Runners, and Walking on Clouds.

Group running in Chattanooga

Tennessee Running Tour – Trail of Tears

January 14

Held in January each year, TRT’s Trail of Tears is part of the longest state park running series in the United States. The race starts and finishes at the lodge of the Red Clay State Park Historic Area. The approximately seven-mile course takes runners across the Georgia state line and back. Walkers are also welcome!

Waterfall at Lula Lake Land Trust

Polar Plunge Fun Run at Lula Lake

January 14

There’s only one day out of the entire year that the public is allowed to swim in Lula Lake, and it just so happens to be when the lake is absolutely freezing. This year’s Polar Plunge includes an optional three-mile fun run through the Preserve that leads to the launch point at Lula Lake. Both runners and jumpers-only pay the $50 flat fee that includes hot cider, hot cocoa, beer, and a souvenir koozie. Ticket proceeds benefit Lula Lake Land Trust and its conservation initiatives.

Boulderfest Image

Wauhatchie BoulderFest 2023

January 14

This all-day event is for everyone who loves climbing and being outdoors. There will be a bouldering competition, awards, and a community-wide hangout with fire pits, drinks, a food truck, and music, all to take place at Lookout Mountain Conservancy’s Boulders on Old Wauhatchie Pike. Registration for competitors is from 8 until 9 a.m. the day of the event. Both experienced climbers and beginners are encouraged to join!

String Theory Event at the Hunter Museum

String Theory at the Hunter

January 17

String Theory is welcoming the Kenari Quartet to the Hunter Museum of American Art for a passionate, innovative performance. Bob Eason (soprano saxophone), Kyle Baldwin (alto saxophone), Corey Dundee (tenor saxophone), and Steven Banks (baritone saxophone) make up the genre-bending ensemble. The bar opens at 5 p.m. for concert-goers, with musical dialogues to follow at 6 p.m. and the concert to take place at 6:30 p.m.

Pink! Gala

Pink! Gala

January 21

Enjoy a “Pink! Night in the Big Apple” as part of the 18th annual Pink! Gala. This black-tie event is the CHI Memorial Foundation’s signature fundraiser, where proceeds go to support the MaryEllen Locher Breast Center at CHI Memorial. The best of New York fashion, street performers, musicians, artists, and award-winning theater will make this an evening to remember.

Woman in a victorian dress

Pride and Prejudice

January 27-February 12 (select dates)

Jane Austen’s beloved novel gets an update in this stage version of Pride and Prejudice, to be performed in the Circle Theatre at the Chattanooga Theatre Centre. However, protagonist Lizzy Bennet and the impossibly aggravating Mr. Darcy are still at the heart of the surprising and boisterous story. Tickets are available online for the production, which is appropriate for all ages.

Black Excellence Awards poster

Black Excellence Chattanooga (BEC) Awards

January 28

The fourth annual BEC Awards is set for January 28 at the Chattanooga Convention Center. Presented by Chattanooga Business Elite, this awards show recognizes and celebrates minority businesses that have excelled in customer service, community enrichment, and been an overall enhancement to Hamilton County. Don’t miss this year’s after-party at The Signal with live entertainment, drink specials, a VIP section, and more.

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