Kingsport hosting annual Public Works Day event
The City of Kingsport is hosting its annual Public Works Day at the Farmers Market on May 25 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The event is being held during National Public Works Week (May 21-27) – a week-long celebration started by the American Public Works Association in 1960 to show the public the importance of public works in their daily lives.
This year’s theme is “Connecting the World through Public Works,” which highlights the way public works professionals connect us physically, through infrastructure, and inspirationally, through service to their communities.
“Public Works is the thread that connects us all, no matter where we live in the world,” said Deputy City Manager Ryan McReynolds. “Like previous years, we plan to showcase the breadth and depth of services offered to our customers, from snow removal to the street sweepers to the directional drills, to the guys who trim trees and put the asphalt down.”
In all, about 50 pieces of equipment will be on hand during Thursday’s event, including automated garbage collection trucks, a trash grabber truck, mini street sweeper, leaf collection equipment, sewer camera vans, a directional drill machine, mowers, a backhoe and mini paver.
Kids will be able to take a short trip up in a bucket truck, try and pick up a tire with a grabber truck, hook a metal pin with a backhoe or attempt to drop a tennis ball into a bucket with a Gradall machine.
All divisions within public works will be represented and employees will be on hand to demonstrate the equipment and answer questions from the public. Several presentations explaining essential daily operations will take place throughout the event.
In addition to the heavy equipment, activity stations will be set up to allow children to paint sign replicas of manhole covers, look through microscopes to see bacteria and see how cameras go through sewer pipes. Kids can also play in the large sandbox, run through a water sprinkler and visit the “Then & Now” display to see public works equipment of today and in the past.
Kingsport’s Public Works Department is the largest, non-school related, department in the city with approximately 362 employees. The department includes water and sewer, streets and sanitation, building maintenance, traffic, fleet maintenance, GIS, engineering, stormwater, IT, Transit and the Metropolitan Transportation and Planning Organization.