Mardi Gras party kicks off Fun Fest
KINGSPORT, Tenn. - Fun Fest kicked off with the Mardi Gras party downtown on Friday afternoon. The party sets the tone for the community festival. The music and fun of the Mardi Gras party is a Fan Favorite at Fun Fest, which has been running for 37 years in the City of Kingsport. The Mardi Gras party has been a part of the festival for more than 25 years for the community, evolving from a downtown hoedown in the early years. "It's like it's own festival," Director Lucy Fleming said. She said the activities help set the tone for the rest of the festival. "It's a chance to bring the community together for the very first big hoorah." Some, like Kenneth Essick, are coming for the first time. Essick said it is the company that makes it worth it. "Just all the great people who show up and make this possible." Others like Tammy Baker have been coming for nearly two decades. Friday, she brought friends and family. "Things to do and it's stuff to enjoy with family," Baker said. There was one common theme heard from everyone News 5 talked to: It is a fun time for the whole family. "It's just a really good thing that everybody gets together out here and everyone spends time together," Kingsport resident Deana Ruth said. The downtown events continue in Kingsport on Saturday with Buskerfest and a car show.