WHEN: March 20, 2014 at 11 am

WHERE: Kingsport Farmers Market

Tickets: FREE and OPEN to the Public

The official Groundbreaking ceremony for the construction of the Kingsport Carousel building will take place at 11 am on Thursday March 20, 2014 at the Clinchfield Street parking lot at the Farmers Market.

It is being coordinated by the Kingsport Chamber of Commerce. Speakers will include Mayor Dennis Phillips, Reggie Martin and Valerie Joh.

The public is encouraged to attend.

In June 2013, Pal and Sharon Bargers substantial gift to Engage Kingsport for the Carousel Project insured that a climate controlled building would house the beautiful animals & artwork.  The building will aptly be named Pals Roundhouse.

The Kingsport Carousel Project is a volunteer-led community project involving over 200 volunteers with the dream of creating and operating a menagerie-style carousel featuring all hand-carved wooden animals and chariots and original paintings on a refurbished machine that is totally unique and iconic to Kingsport. The Kingsport Carousel Project is a joint effort by The City of Kingsport Office of Cultural Arts & Engage Kingsport, the Friends of the Cultural Arts group, a private 501(c)3 nonprofit corporation governed by a volunteer board of directors and supported by the generosity of people who love the arts. The arts are transformative to individuals as well as places.

The festivities will be followed the next day on Friday March 21st with the biggest Carousel fundraiser of the year, the Brass Ring Gala and then the Carousel Fine Craft show on Saturday & Sunday.

Come and celebrate the greatest community project in the history of Kingsport!

Tickets for the Brass Ring Gala are $35 each and gain the bearer to attendance all weekend long.  Tickets to the Carousel Fine Craft Show are $7 for both Saturday and Sunday and $5 for one day only.

The Brass Ring Gala and Carousel Fine Craft Show made their debut last year to rave reviews.  This year the Gala and Show return with more than double the number of fine craft exhibitors and the newest of Kingsports Carousel animals will be on display as well as the new bird paintings.  The Brass Ring Gala will be on Friday, March 21 from 6 PM- 9 PM and the Carousel Fine Craft Show will continue on Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM ¬ 5 PM both days.

The Kingsport Carousel Project has captured the imagination of the region and will soon break ground for the Pals Roundhouse which will house the 1956-vintage Herschel Carousel.  Though much care and artistry have gone into each facet of the carousel, this is a working ride and children of all ages (and their parents and grandparents) will enjoy this destination for generations.

To honor the amazing work of the carvers, painters and machinists who work so diligently and with such care on the Carousel, the Brass Ring Gala will kick-off the weekend of celebration and shopping.  My New Favorites will return to offer a toe tapping musical array, heavy hors douevres and a cash bar will be available.  This is the perfect time to celebrate with the volunteers of the carousel who have carved frogs, elephants, horses and tigers and to the painters many of whom painted these platform animals and also painted the Rounding Boards and Bird Features. The Carousels working Band Organ will be on display and played over the course of the weekend.  Who can resist the merry waltzes and polkas!

The finest artists and artisans of the region join in the celebration and offer the Tri-Cities a chance to explore true treasures and the people who make them.  Weavers, woodworkers, porcelain and pottery will share the stage with fine furniture and amazing jewelry.  Support these amazing artists and invest in a legacy.

The Brass Ring Gala and Carousel Fine Craft Show take place at the Kingsport Farmers Market located on Clinchfield and Center Streets in Kingsport, TN.  The Farmers Market is quickly becoming and entertainment and event destination and the up-coming co-location of the Carousel and its adjacent park will further enhance its amenities.  Art and artists provide the framework of a creative community.

Tickets are available by calling the Kingsport Office of Cultural Arts at 423-392-8414, in person in room 224 of the Renaissance Arts Center and online at