Downtown Kingsport gears up for Main Street, Localpalooza festivals

Jessica Fischer • Sep 12, 2011 at 3:54 AM

Summer is winding down, but downtown Kingsport is gearing up for a busy fall season, beginning Saturday with a double dose of family friendly fun. The Downtown Kingsport Association’s inaugural Main Street Festival will feature food and craft vendors, children’s activities and a baking contest from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Main Street. That event coincides with another first-time festival — Localpalooza — which will bring 15 regional bands to the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce lawn. Localpalooza runs from 10 a.m. to 11 p.m. Admission to both events is free. “People got used to having Fall for Downtown Kingsport, but we wanted to kind of restructure it, reorganize it, make it more kid-oriented, so we’re going to have lots of kids activities and vendors and such going on,” DKA Executive Director Stacey J. Eubanks said of the Main Street Festival. “We also decided to piggyback it with Localpalooza.” Localpalooza’s lineup includes Cash Revisited, Railroad Angels/Southern Traditions, Shake Ragg, the Taylor Barker Band, Appalachian Trails, Wolf Creek, Sweet Cyanide, Mindset, Goldrush, Quarter Bounce, Alter’d State, Twitch, Sloe Gyn, Tattoo Bruise and Citizen Kane. Festival goers can dine on assorted fare for sale by participating food vendors while listening to the live music or browse the wares of the arts and crafts vendors set up along Main Street. “We’re going to have some of the carousel carvers here, and they’re going to be carving some of the horses,” Eubanks said. Folks can also enter their best breads, cakes, cupcakes and pies in the festival’s amateur baking contest. Entry forms can be downloaded from the DKA website at www.downtownk ingsport.org . Eubanks said she hopes the festival will serve as a chance for folks to venture beyond Main Street and explore all the other gems downtown Kingsport has to o f f e r. “It’s going to be a whole day full of fun,” she said. “We just want to get people downtown, get them to go off Main Street and Broad Street. “They come downtown and go, ‘I had no idea this was here.’ We’ve got a new church moving in downtown on Cumberland, the Bagel Company is going to be opening on Center Street. The Corvette club that always for years had been meeting in front of K-Mart, they’re now coming downtown,” Eubanks added. “Things are happening, and we like it.” Fall is shaping up to be a busy season indeed for downtown Kingsport, which will host the inaugural Kingsport Oktoberfest celebration on Sept. 24. In addition to live entertainment and a craft beer tasting, the event will feature a KidZone, a Wiener Dog “Brat Trot” Race, a Bavarian Brat eating contest, a Guinness Records Cornhole Toss and Tournament, and the Biers, Cheers & Tears Charity Beer Run. Other upcoming events downtown include Evening with the Arts on Oct. 6; the Haunted Half Marathon and new Rockin’ the Hallows Halloween Music Festival on Oct. 29; Holiday Open House on Nov. 10; Kingsport Christmas Parade and Santa Special AniMile on Nov. 19; and Christmas Tree Lighting on Dec. 3. For more information on any of the downtown Kingsport events, call the DKA at (423) 246-6550.

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