KINGSPORT – Most City offices, including the Library, Senior Center and Renaissance Center will be closed in observance of the Labor Day Holiday on Monday. The Demolition Landfill will be closed to the public on Monday September 6th and re-open on regular schedule on Tuesday September 7th.

There will be NO CHANGE to our garbage, trash and recycling routes for the Labor Day Holiday.‚  The crews will run their regular schedule.


  • Several auto burglaries occurring on Linville St. on August 17-18, 2011.
  • Suspects used victims credit card at Wal-Mart, Ft. Henry Drive.
  • Suspects captured on video using the card.
  • If anyone has any information regarding the identity of the suspects, please contact Detective Martin Taylor, Criminal Investigations Division.‚ 
  • 423.229.9429




KINGSPORT – Utilizing the state-of-the-art technology the planetarium now offers, Bays Mountain Parks Planetarium Staff will take viewers on a guided tour of the current night sky thanks to the parks newest program, Appalachian Skies, beginning Saturday, September 3, at 2:00 p.m. 

Appalachian Skies is a live presentation meaning that viewers will not only receive a personally guided tour of the night sky, they will see celestial objects as they are positioned on that very date.  The tour will offer spectacular views of these marvelous celestial wonders, said Astronomy and Space Sciences Program Coordinator Adam Thanz.  It also features more in-depth information about each, including how viewers can locate and view them on their own when they return home.

Using the planetariums new Carl Zeiss ZKP-4 star projector, planetarium staff will be able to demonstrate to viewers what constellations and planets will be easily visible while offering a star field so realistic and vibrant that a pair of binoculars could be used to see stars not visible to the naked eye.

Part of the parks new planetarium show lineup offering visitors a second viewing option, Appalachian Skies can be seen at 2:00 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday throughout the months of September and October.

Serving as the main feature thru the end of October is Planetary Visions, best described as an adventurous tour of the Solar System and a great show for the entire family.  Planetary Visions can be seen Tuesday through Friday at 4:00 p.m., and on the weekends at 1:00 and 4:00 p.m.

Tickets to all planetarium shows are just $4.00 per person, per show.  Park members are admitted free with the use of their pass.

Annually, more than 150,000 visitors pass through Bays Mountain Park making it one of the State of Tennessees Top 50 Most Visited Attractions, according to the State of Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.

One of the nations largest city-owned parks with 3,550 acres, Bays Mountain Park features 38 miles of hiking trails, a state-of-the-art planetarium, wildlife habitats, fun exhibits, a 44-acre lake, trails for mountain biking and much, much more.

KINGSPORT, Tenn. ‚¬ The Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerces Leadership Programs and CenturyLink are proud to announce Gary Tucker as the recipient of the 2011 Distinguished Leadership Award.

Tucker is the senior vice president of government and business relations for Eastman Credit Union. The award was presented recently at a Kingsport Chamber After Hours event sponsored by Bays Mountain Park & Planetarium.

We are very proud and honored to have presented this most-deserved award to Gary Tucker said Vickie Snodgrass, Kingsport Chamber Leadership Programs director. Gary is a respected leader in our community and has been involved with all of our programs for many years.

Sponsored by CenturyLink, the Kingsport Leadership Programs Distinguished Leadership Award is presented annually to an alumnus of Leadership Kingsport who has exhibited outstanding leadership to the Kingsport community.

I learned the value of community service from the wonderful example set by grandparents and parents who served their community and school system, Tucker said. Service to mankind was part of their faith journey ‚¬ to give of themselves, to help make the world a better place.

A native of Jenkins, Ky., Tuckers love for service started at a young age with his church youth group and high school Kiwanis-sponsored Key Club before serving his country in the United States Air Force in Clovis, N.M.

Before moving to Kingsport, Tucker received his MBA at the University of Kentucky and started a career in sales and marketing for Ford Motor Company in Cincinnati.

Since moving to Kingsport in 1994, Tucker has been deeply involved in the Kingsport community. He began his service through Wellmont Foundation fundraising activities, in support of a variety of patient wellness cause. Tucker has also served as past president of The Rotary Club of Kingsport ‚¬ Sunrise, Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce board member and committee chair, overseeing Leadership Kingsport, S.H.O.U.T.! Youth Leadership and Encore Programs, volunteer for Habitat for Humanity, youth baseball and basketball coach, member of Interfaith Hospitality Network and a number of other community service activities.

Tucker graduated from Leadership Kingsport in 2002.

Tucker currently is chief volunteer officer and board president of The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Kingsport, vice-chair of United Way of Greater Kingsports leadership development committee and Kingsport Community Foundation board member.

Assisting others to navigate through life-changing events is very rewarding, Tucker said. I am grateful to be in a position to help other people.

Tucker and his wife, Catherine, attend First Presbyterian Church where they both share K-2 Sunday school and Tucker serves as Elder. They are the proud parents of Brad and Marc and grandparents of Hannah and Halle.

The Distinguished Leadership Award (DLA) is designed to recognize exceptional community leadership program graduates. Recipients are men and women who have made significant and notable contributions for the betterment of their communities.

Member organizations of The Community Leadership Association (CLA) are each encouraged to nominate a graduate or multiple graduates who have achieved excellence. Graduates of leadership programs who exemplify the spirit and goals for civic involvement and trusteeship established by your local leadership organization are eligible for this award and selection and criteria are at the discretion of the member organization submitting the nomination.

Kingsport Leadership Programs oversee three leadership programs of the Kingsport Chamber. The Leadership Programs are sponsored by Holston Valley Medical Center; Eastman Chemical Company; Eastman Credit Union; Kingsport Times-News; Bank of Tennessee; Citizens Bank; First Tennessee Bank; Indian Path Medical Center and CenturyLink.

The mission of Leadership Kingsport, the adult leadership program, is to develop leaders who give life to community dreams.

The other two include the youth leadership program, S.H.O.U.T.!‚® (Students Helping Others Understand Tomorrow) and the senior leadership program, ENCORE (Enrich and Nurture Our Community ‚¬ Offer Your Resources and Experience).

The mission of S.H.O.U.T.!‚® is to develop, in an interactive environment, the leadership skills and community awareness of selected high school sophomores and juniors..

The mission of ENCORE is to inform participants about the community and the opportunities for volunteer service.

ENCORE is sponsored by Eastman Chemical Company and other community partners.

For more information on Kingsport Leadership Programs, call Vickie Snodgrass, director of Leadership Programs, at (423) 392-8816.

The Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce is a private, non-profit business organization comprised of nearly 1,000 members.‚  The Kingsport Chambers mission is to utilize resources and focus efforts on enhancing a strong and viable business environment for the Kingsport area.

For more information on the Kingsport Chamber, go to or call (423) 392-8800.‚  Were social, too; follow us on our Facebook page, Your Kingsport Area Chamber of Commerce, and on our Twitter account, @kptchamber.


NASHVILLE ‚ ‚¬â€‚  Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam and Economic and Community Development Commissioner Bill Hagerty today joined with Sullivan County officials in announcing the decision by C&F Group to locate a manufacturing facility in Kingsport, Tenn. The Ireland-based company will invest $12.5 million and create 450 new jobs over a four year period.‚  The Kingsport facility will be the companys first U.S. location.

‚ “I appreciate the confidence C&F Group has shown in our state by choosing Kingsport for the company’s first U.S. location,” Haslam said. “This investment translates into hundreds of good-paying jobs for Northeast Tennesseans and plays an important part in our mission to make Tennessee the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs.”

‚ C&F Group is a prime example of the growth and promise we‚ see in Tennessees automotive industry, Hagerty said. Under Governor Haslams leadership, my department is working to foster a business friendly climate that gives companies the confidence to invest and create jobs.‚  I welcome C&F Group to Tennessee and thank them for the high quality jobs they will create in our state.

Hagerty and ECD senior staff called on C&F Group executives in Ireland as part of the recruiting process.

“Going to Ireland and visiting with C&F Group executives directly was a part of the recruiting process,” Hagerty said. “After that visit, we understood the companys needs and were able to address them in our state.”

‚ After comprehensive review of more than 20 locations in the Southeast U.S. and across several states, Tennessee was the obvious choice for our new location, Tom Hyland, president, C&F Manufacturing USA Inc., said We would like to thank the State of Tennessee and the City of Kingsport, as well as Sullivan County for their support during our North American location analysis process.

Headquartered in Galway, Ireland, the company provides its automotive customers with a turnkey solution for all decorative and functional trim components in aluminum and steel, racking for the data management industry, as well as small wind turbines. The Kingsport facility is located at 10388 Airport Parkway, in Northeast Tennessee Business Park, and will manufacture products for the three C&F Group divisions: automotive exterior trim components, data management and renewable energy industries.‚  The C&F Group operates locations in Ireland, Germany, Czech Republic, Philippines, China and now the U.S.

“Today’s announcement is the result of 18 months of hard work with the help of NETWORKS, the Kingsport Economic Development Board, the City of Kingsport and the State of Tennessee, Kingsport Mayor Dennis Phillips said. We look forward to doing all we can to ensure C&F Manufacturing USA Inc., is a major success.

We are thrilled C&F Group has chosen Sullivan County for its newest location, Sullivan County Mayor Steve Godsey said.‚  We appreciate the hard work of state and local officials to make this happen and look forward to having C&F Group as a part of our community.

This has been a lengthy recruitment process, highlighted by a strong commitment of effort from Governor Haslam, Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development staff, the City of Kingsport and the Kingsport Economic Development Board, Richard Venable, chief executive officer, NETWORKS, said. We hold high hopes for new job creation by C&F Manufacturing USA Inc., for years to come, and definitely are‚ proud to be the first U.S. location for a successful Irish manufacturer with key international customers such as IBM, BMW and Volkswagen.

About the Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development
The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Developments mission is to develop strategies which help make Tennessee the No. 1 location in the Southeast for high quality jobs. The department seeks to attract new corporate investment in Tennessee and works with Tennessee companies to facilitate expansion and economic growth. To find out more, go to

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The Bays Mountain Astronomy has releases their September newsletter.‚  To view this newsletter, please click here.

KINGSPORT – The Kingsport Theatre Guild is proud to present “Little Shop of Horrors”.‚  Performances will be held at the Kingsport Renaissance Theatre from September 22 – October 2, 2011.‚  General admission tickets are $12‚ & $10 and can be purchased at the door or on-line at

In this presentation‚ a down-and out skid row floral assistant becomes an overnight sensation when he discovers an exotic plant with a mysterious craving for fresh blood. Soon Audrey II grows into an ill-tempered, foul-mouthed, R&B-singing carnivore who offers him fame and fortune in exchange for feeding its growing appetite, finally revealing itself to be an alien creature poised for global domination! Adult Comedy PG. General admission.


KINGSPORTDobyns-Bennett High School students again outperformed state and national averages in all categories of the 2011 ACT exam, with a record number of D-B students taking the exam. A total of 404 students completed the test, an increase of 4.4% over the prior year.

Additionally, Dobyns-Bennett students continued a 5-year trend of increasing the positive gap between system results and state averages in all subject areas.

Dobyns-Bennett High School students also outperformed state and national averages in all categories for College Readiness.

Kingsport City Schools has outlined improving college readiness measures as one of the systems top goals for the Race to the Top initiative. To reach this goal, the school system has hired a system-wide science coordinator, a secondary curriculum coordinator, and a Project Lead the Way teacher at the middle school level. These positions will actively seek ways to increase student achievement and prepare students for college and careers by improving instruction in core content areas.

The current results make a clear argument for the need to continue on our mission of college and career readiness for all students, said Dr. Chris Hampton, principal at Dobyns-Bennett High School. We acknowledge the hard work that has gone into preparing all of our students for life beyond high school. The percentage of Dobyns-Bennett students who were college and career ready in all four areas more than doubled that of Tennessee. This speaks highly to the focus of our staff and students. While these results are a direct reflection on Dobyns-Bennett, they too, are a reflection of the hard work and effort of Kingsport City Schools and our community as a whole. Our work in this area is not complete and we will continue our journey toward preparing all of our students for postsecondary readiness.

Beginning with the 2009-2010 school year, all 11th grade students in the state of Tennessee were required to complete the ACT. Comparison of state and national averages should take into account that Tennessee is one of only seven states that require all 11th grade students to take the ACT, regardless of the students intent to pursue higher education.

For more information, contact Kingsport City Schools Administrative Coordinator Andy True at (423) 378-2130.‚ 



KINGSPORTIn a communication to faculty and staff today, Dr. Richard Kitzmiller announced that he will be retiring as Superintendent of Kingsport City Schools effective December 30, 2011.

Kitzmiller has served as the Superintendent of Kingsport City Schools since September 2002. In his notice to KCS staff, Kitzmiller stated, I anticipate retiring with a confidence in our school system. We will continue to meet our mission. We have a great staff in place and are doing the right things to improve the lives of our students. We receive guidance and leadership from a great board of education. We have supportive and appreciative relationships with our parents and the Kingsport community.

A native of Sullivan County, he received his Bachelors and Masters degrees from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville. Kitzmiller was a teacher in Ohio and Knox County, TN Schools prior to returning to Kingsport to teach in 1978. He served as a math teacher and coach at Ross N. Robinson Middle School and served as an assistant coach under Buck Van Huss with the Dobyns-Bennett High School‘s freshmen basketball program. In 1988,‚ Dr. Kitzmiller‚ was named Kingsport City School‘s staff development coordinator, where he helped develop and initiate the system’s first staff development program.

Prior to serving as superintendent,‚ Dr. Kitzmiller‚ worked in a variety of system-wide and central office positions, most recently serving as Director of Accountability and Student Services. In May of 2001, he received his Doctorate of Education degree from East Tennessee State University. Dr. Kitzmiller currently serves on the Tennessee BEP Review Committee, the Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents‚ (TOSS) Board of Directors, and was named the 2011 Tennessee Superintendent of the Year.

For more information, contact Andy True, Kingsport City Schools Administrative Coordinator at (423) 378-2130.‚ 



KINGSPORT – Blakley Drive in the Rock Springs area from Church View Drive to Kanan Drive will be closed beginning Tuesday, August 23, to permit water and sewer construction. Work should last about three weeks, with detours posted. As always, motorists should use the utmost caution in the work zone.