423 Day Festival Celebrates Chattanooga
CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- Today is April 23rd, or 423 Day.
423 as most know is the area phone code for most of our Tennessee viewing area, and has served that purpose since 19-95.
The area code also serves portions of Northeastern Tennessee around the Tri-Cities.
423 is not just an area code, but it’s a state of mind for Chattanoogans.
The 423 Day Festival at Miller Park Sunday was a chance for Chattanoogans to celebrate the Scenic City.
Ronni Barnes Houston, the organizer of the festival, said, “It gives a place where there’s diversity and inclusion for all Chattanoogans.”
Over 50 vendors, along with live performers such as Swayvo and a cornhole tournament dominated the scene.
One vendor, Joy Grissom, said, “This is my first year down here and I love it. The setup is nice, the music, the neighbor vendors are nice.”
Michael Crosa, the emcee of the event and a local podcaster, said “Area codes, zip codes like you mentioned, they’re really important to people, and as a symbol from where they come from, you see those kinds of tattoos and other things like that all over the place.”
Crosa is locked into the city with his new podcast called My Part of Town Chattanooga.
He said of it, “What I do is I talk to folks about the neighborhoods they live in, and we talk about what makes that area special. So sometimes it’s business owners or other prominent folks in those neighborhoods, and other times it’s the neighbor next door.”
Stories symbolizing Chattanooga were to be found at the 423 Festival.
A young author, Chloie Marshall, said, “I’ve been writing ever since I could remember, and it’s something I’m very passionate about, and I also really love children so I was like, what if I combine two things that I really love.”
Marshall is only 17 but has published a children’s book called GiGi the Giving Grasshopper along with a coloring book.
She said, “Just growing up my mother has taught me about giving back to the community, and being kind. So I was like I want other people and other young kids to learn that. That is the inspiration behind my book. I also have a community service group called The Giving Grasshoppers, and we do things in the city.”
That was a common theme when we asked what 423 means to them.
Grissom said, “When I think of 423, I think of the Volunteer State.”
Houston said, “423 means Chattanooga. I am a native Chattanoogan. I live in Chattanooga, and it is just a way to celebrate the city that we live in. I think a lot of times negativity overshadows the beauty the city has to offer.”