December 6, 2023

Food City

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Editorial: Get ready for Racks by the Tracks | Editorials

It’s the largest celebration in Kingsport if not the region, and Fun Fest has a warmup event for its annual summer festival, scheduled for July 15-23.

Racks by the Tracks began just 14 years ago and now brings thousands to downtown Kingsport for a single-day, all-day event where you may taste the best barbecue available and more than 100 craft beers, wines, seltzers and sangrias. It will be held May 15 at the Kingsport Farmers Market next to Food City on Clinchfield Street, and tickets are now available at Tasting tickets are $35, and concert tickets are $10.

This year’s festival will feature the original Tri-Cities’ tasting event, a BBQ competition, the Racks by the Tracks 10K and 5K races, and plenty of great music. Tickets allow you to sample all of the available beverages. Attendees will also place votes for their favorite libations and receive a souvenir pint glass.

Returning for the ninth year are the Racks by the Tracks 10K and 5K Race/Walks presented by Powell Valley National Bank. Along with the fun environment, one of the appealing draws of the races is that the course is considered the fastest in the region due to how consistently flat it is.

This year will feature a brand-new course to give runners opportunity to run on one of Kingsport’s greatest treasures, the Greenbelt. The race will still have the same start and finish lines but will offer participants a more scenic path. Runners seeking a challenging and unique test of stamina may sign up for the Boss Hog Challenge in which they run in both the 10K and 5K races and receive a limited-edition Boss Hog Challenger T-shirt just for participating.

The BBQ Competition will give attendees an opportunity to taste the best barbecue from restaurants and teams from across the region. Each attendee can cast their vote for People’s Choice awards. No ticket is required to access this section of the festival. Non-barbecue food vendors will also be on site.

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Entertainment on the Honda Kingsport Stage will feature headliner Pandora’s Box and the Ultimate Aerosmith Tribute.

Opening for Pandora’s Box is 7 Bridges, The Ultimate Eagles Experience.

Seven Bridges faithfully recreates the experience of an Eagles concert from the band’s most prolific period. Every show features one brilliant hit single after another with some Don Henley and Joe Walsh surprises sprinkled into the mix. The music kicks off at 1 p.m. with local country band Gents & Liars, a five-man group from Johnson City.

Racks by the Tracks prides itself on giving back each year and to date has contributed more than $100,000 to local nonprofits. Proceeds have benefited the following organizations throughout the years: Second Harvest Food Bank, Sullivan County Humane Society, Boys & Girls Club, Girls Inc. of Kingsport, Kingsport Chamber, Downtown Kingsport Association, PEAK Young Professionals, Relay for Life, Skin Cancer Foundation, Kingsport Ballet, Rotary Clubs of Kingsport, and St. Jude Children’s Hospital.

It’s a great time that you simply must experience. See you there!