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HomeKids & Family20 Summer Bucket List Must-Dos in Rutherford County

20 Summer Bucket List Must-Dos in Rutherford County

Rutherford County is one of the fastest-growing counties in all of Tennessee and with good reason. Located at the exact middle point of the state of Tennessee, it has plenty of activities for families. In this list you will find historic, educational, outdoorsy, unique and just plain fun places to experience.

Percy Priest Lake

Visit Percy Priest

percy priest lake

This 42-mile, man-made lake was finished in 1968; it is only a short 15-minute drive from Downtown Nashville. It is the perfect spot for recreational activities such as boating, camping and fishing. Spend a day kayaking, out on the sail boat or jet skiing and enjoy the nights under the sky stargazing with a campfire. Amenities include water, electrical hookups, restrooms and showers.

The Historic Sam Davis Home and Plantation

Sam Davis Home and Plantation

sam davis house

Sitting on 168 acres in the middle of Smyrna, this historic home is rich in history and one of the areas top historic attractions. The home was built in 1810 and is kept as original as possible with authentic family relics and pieces. The story of Sam David is heroism at it’s finest for the role he played in the Civil War. Take the tour for the full story and special access to the multiple dwellings on this historical land.

The Discovery Center

Explore the Discovery Center

discovery center
Photo: Discovery Center Facebook Page

The Discovery Center is an interactive, educational museum for everyone to enjoy. Children will learn all about the world around them through various exhibits, programs and play.

Historic Downtown Murfreesboro

downtown murfreesboro
photo: Main Street Murfreesboro/Rutherford, Inc.

The notable courthouse is at the center of the historic Downtown Murfreesboro Square. It is surrounded by quaint shops, restaurants and history that run deep into the veins of Rutherford County.

Julia’s HomeStyle Bakery

julia's homestyle bakery

Boro Bakery

Fresh baked cupcakes, cookies, award winning pies and more is what you’ll find at Julia’s HomeStyle Bakery. With over 33 years of confectionary experience, you won’t be disappointed by the unique, delicious treats you will find here.

Oaklands Mansion

Visit Oaklands Mansion

Oaklands Mansion
Oaklands Mansion

A historic plantation located in Murfreesboro, the Oaklands Mansion is a historic plantation steeped in history. During the Civil War, officers from both sides occupied the home. Notable historical figures from both the Union and Confederate sides have visited the home, in addition to interesting events. This mansion was almost torn down in 1958 but was instead preserved and opened as a museum. 

Batey Farms

Batey Farms

batey farms
Batey Farms Facebook

Located 6 miles Northwest of Murfreesboro, you will find the 8th generation family-owned Batey Farms. Browse the 200 year old on-site cabin that is now a retail store where you can buy various items from several farms in the area. Be sure to visit their website for adjusted hours of operation due to COVID.

The Avenue Murfreesboro

Shop The Avenue

the avenue murfreesboro
The Avenue Murfreesboro Facebook

The Avenue is the premier shopping facility in Murfreesboro where you can find a little bit of everything. With stores from Bath and Body Works to Burlington, you’ll be able to find exactly what you’re looking for. While there, you can dine in one of their many amazing restaurants such as BJ’s Brewhouse, MIMI’S or Longhorn Steakhouse.

Springhouse Theatre

Springhouse Theatre Company

springhouse theatre company
photo: Springhouse Theatre Company Facebook

Springhouse Theatre is a Christian-based Theatre Company that puts on productions to appeal to both the Christian and the secularist. In addition to plays, Springhouse also hosts drama camps for kids to learn the ins and outs of theatre production.

Long Hunter State Park

Visit Long Hunter

long hunter state park lake

Long Hunter State Park offers 2,600 acres of recreational activities that include fishing, camping, boating, hiking and more. Check their events calendar for unique and fun outdoor experiences.

Boro Beach

Visit Boro Beach


This is a great place for families to enjoy some water fun under the sun! Boro Beach contains multiple waterslides, a splash pad and a kid’s only section for little one’s to have fun without the hustle and bustle of the older crowd.

Rutherford County Farmer’s Market

Rutherford Farmer’s Market

rutherford county farmers market
Photo: Rutherford County Farmers Market Updates Facebook Page

This Farmer’s Market is open on Tuesdays and Fridays, May through October. It is a produce-only Farmer’s Market located at the Community Center in Lane Agri Park. It hosts vendors from 20 different counties and sells a wide variety of flowers, fruits, veggies, meats and more.

The Town of Bell Buckle

Visit Bell Buckle

bell buckle
photo from Trip Advisor

Bell Buckle is an old railroad town located just outside of Murfreesboro. Established in 1852, it is known for its antique shopping, handmade crafts, country music and historic buildings.

Cannonsburgh Village

Cannonsburgh Village

Cannonsburgh Village represents 100 years of Tennessee life from the 1830s-1930s. This village is home to a schoolhouse, a general store, a blacksmith’s shop and so much more. Take a self-guided tour to discover historic Tennessee’s way of life.

City Cafe

City Cafe Murfreesboro

city cafe murfreesboro

City Café is the oldest restaurant in Tennessee with a grand opening date of February 10, 1900. Whether you want a classic Southern breakfast, lunch or Meat and 3 lunch plates, you will leave the City Café full and satisfied.

Stones River Battlefield

Visit Stones River

stones river

This field is home to one of the most important Union victories during the Civil War. During you visit to this historic battle field you will learn about the history and importance of this battle and how it changed the course of history. View various relics while you hear the personal stories of individuals who fought here. Enjoy the nature and animals unique to the area as you walk the grounds. Check out their website for various events hosted throughout the year.

Earth Experience Museum

Visit Earth Experience

earth experience
photo: Earth Experience – Middle Tennessee Museum of Natural History

Middle Tennessee’s museum for natural history, the Earth Experience Museum is interactive, educational fun for everyone. Explore the archaeological world around us from Antarctica to Madagascar.

Lane, Trains and Automobiles Entertainment

LTA Depot

lanes trains and automobiles bowling
photo: Lanes, Trains, and Automobiles Facebook

Fun for the entire family! Enjoy bowling, arcading and laser tag. There is also an onsite restaurant for you to dine at after an afternoon of fun.

Old Fort Park

Visit Old Fort Park

old fort park murfreesboro
Old Fort Park, Murfreesboro

Often said to be the best park in Murfreesboro, Old Fort Park provides a magical play area for children to enjoy. It is also great for riding bikes, walking trails and open field activities.


Catfeine Cat Café

Visit Catfeiene

catfeine cafe murfreesboroCatfeine is a Cat Café where you can enjoy some small talk, a drink and lots of time with some felines. Enjoy spending time with up to 20 cats in a common area at any given time. Catfeine helps cats in the area to get adopted into loving homes.

Elisa Perry
Elisa Perry
Elisa Perry has a background in travel writing, content creation and copyediting. She has written for a variety of companies from small town mom-and-pop businesses to international brands covering everything from hotel overviews to cell phone app research & launch announcements. She specializes in family travel, food and promoting local brand awareness.