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City aims for 100 Fun Fest block parties

Margot Seay, Community Contributor • Updated Jun 1, 2018 at 11:17 AM

The Neighborhood Commission enjoys bringing you information the first Friday of each month. This time, it’s about fun and fellowship — an important part, we believe, of any strong neighborhood.

Fun Fest, in its 38th year, has become the go-to summer festival in the region. With nine days, 60 locations and 100-plus events, there’s something for everyone.

To get in the Fun Fest spirit and to get to know each other a little better than before, neighbors and friends gather for block parties. This year, block parties will be going on July 6-8 in various locations in Kingsport.


Ready to have some fun? Block parties can be a private neighborhood gathering of friends or a public party anyone can attend or anything in between!

The goal is to host 100 block parties this year. The first 100 registered parties will receive a FREE Block Party Kit. You will also get a confirmation letter notifying you that your party is an OFFICIAL 2018 Fun Fest Block Party.

Here are some items to consider when hosting a block party:

1) Location: If it’s a small gathering, a single yard may suffice. If you’re expecting a large gathering, maybe a cul-de-sac or a park. Kingsport’s Traffic Department is available to help walk you through how to close a neighborhood street if you need to.

2) Food: For an affordable block party, encourage neighbors to bring a dish. If you’re going all out, have it catered.

3) Entertainment: For beginners, bring a speaker and a Spotify list to create a festive atmosphere.

4) Icebreakers: Include yard games to get to know your neighbors better.

5) Money: Think about whether you want this to be a free event or one where neighbors pay a nominal fee. Block parties can be fairly inexpensive to host.

6) Nametags: Great for new neighbors. Include your street name or house number.

7) Pinterest fun ideas: Find out what other neighbors are doing to host awesome block parties.

Take the plunge and register today at www.funfest.net under the “Events” tab. Please register before June 30 to be included in the Fun Fest schedule of events.


Already have a block party? Here are some ideas to get more neighbors out and about on your big day.

1) Inflatables: Yes, kids love them.

2) Cook-offs and bake-offs: Give prizes to the neighbors with the best burger and dessert. Include fun categories and get kids involved too.

3) Have face painting and kid craft stations.

4) Find live music: Maybe someone in your neighborhood already plays in a band.

5) Bring bikes and trikes!

6) Do good: Have a CANstruction event and donate cans of food to a local food bank.

Did you know?

The city has an app for potholes. It’s called YourGOV. Download today. It’s free!

YourGOV is an innovative citizen request app that allows community members to conveniently report non-emergency issues and make service requests using the web or a smartphone.

In just three steps, YourGOV users can submit common issues — such as potholes, vandalism, street light outages and more — complete with location, details and photos. Once your idea is submitted, YourGOV will automatically deliver requests to the right person.

Next neeting

Our next meeting will be Thursday, June 28 at 6 p.m. at City Hall in the Council Room, second floor. Kitty Frazier, director of Parks and Recreation, will be joining us to talk about our parks.

Please join us and share your successes and concerns as a valued citizen. We welcome you! In the meantime, if you have something to share, please email us at [email protected]

Margot Seay is chair of the Kingsport Neighborhood Commission

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