Festival founder Kanishka Biddanda said 15,000 people are expected to attend this year’s festivities.
“We have found that to be about the capacity of the venue,” he said. “By about 7 or 7:30 p.m. (last year), we had to stop selling tickets because there was literally no more space to put people. We’re on pace to do that again, as well, so that’s why we really encourage people to either buy their tickets online in advance or come on out to the festival to get their tickets in the morning or the afternoon.”
The high-gravity beer tasting event has already sold out, but tickets are still available for the wine tasting, low-gravity beer tasting and concerts, which will feature the popular country music band Sawyer Brown.
Concert goers who buy their tickets online by Thursday will pay the discounted rate of $15. For those who buy tickets at the festival, the price will increase to $20.
More than 600 people have already registered for the 10K and 5K races, which will kick off the festival on Saturday at 9 a.m. Online registration for these races will close on Thursday at 8 p.m.; after that, runners can register in person on Friday evening or Saturday morning at the Kingsport Higher Education Center, located at 300 W. Market St.
Biddanda said one of the most exciting parts of this year’s festival is the wine tasting event sponsored by Barefoot Wines, the world’s largest wine brand. During the wine tasting, Barefoot Wines will offer more than 20 different styles of wines and introduce its new Refresh wine, which comes in a can.
“It’s not available in stores; it’s not available anywhere else, at no other event,” Biddanda said. “It’s being debuted at Racks by the Tracks this Saturday in Kingsport, and so wine tasting attendees will be able to sample that product before their friends and before they’ll be able to see it in stores.”
Barefoot Wines will also be giving a pair of sunglasses and a wine stopper to every wine tasting participant.
Biddanda said he is looking forward to this year’s festival because of what it represents.
“For me this year, I’m just so excited because it’s a milestone and a point of reflection to think about how much the Tri-Cities community has really embraced this family-friendly festival and how it’s allowed it to grow, and most importantly has allowed it to support more nonprofits every year,” Biddanda said. “By the end of this festival, we’ll have raised $100,000 for local nonprofits, so that’s what really gets me excited about this year.”
For more information about the festival, visit www.racksbythetracks.com.