Visitors tour the Kingsport Carousel carving studio during Monday's open house at Lynn View Community Center. All photos by David Grace
A tiger, horses, frogs, otters, a giraffe and a flying pig were some of the animals on display Monday for visitors to the Kingsport Carousel project.
The event was part of the annual Fun Fest open house, which helps raise money and awareness about the project.
"We like to have the open house because people can come out and see what we're doing," said project leader Reggie Martin. "People can experience the carving process and building process first hand."
Martin said the turnout for the open house was great. Visitors trickled in and out all afternoon.
The nearly five year project is drawing to a close. Martin said volunteers were carving on their last three animals. The ticket booth, which will be in the shape of a hollowed out tree, was just in the beginning stages of being built.
The plan ahead for the carousel is to finish the last three animals and start building the 70-foot octagonal shaped building in September. It will be built behind the Farmer's Market.
Then it's on to assembling the carousel for a March 2015 grand opening.
Over the years, the project has involved 200 volunteers with a quarter of that number involved in carving the animals. More than 35,000 man hours have been committed to bringing a carousel to Kingsport.
For Charlotte Franklin, seeing the carved and painted animals was a blast from the past.
"I love it, this brings back memories of when I was kid," she said. "This brings back memories of when my son was 5-years-old and letting him ride one. It's like Disney World or something."
If you didn't get a chance to go see the open house, don't fret. Another open house will be taking place Wednesday from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the Lynn View Community Center.comments powered by Disqus