KINGSPORT, Tenn. -

An ongoing project in Downtown Kingsport is now celebrating the next step toward becoming a reality.

The groundbreaking of the city’s carousel project took place this weekend, in conjunction with a gala and craft show featuring dozens of exhibitors selling items like dolls, jewelry, and pottery.

“Actually to celebrate the work of our exceptional photographers and artists and we're doing that, and we've had a great crowd and response for that,” Bonnie Macdonald said of this weekend’s gathering.

Many of the artists at the craft show have also worked with the carousel project. She added that some of the admissions from the events will go toward work for the project.

Leader hope the long-awaited carousel will be finished by early 2015.

Riders will be able to hop aboard 32 large animals and two chariots.

Most of those animals are finished, but volunteers are still working on the finishing touches.

Project managers say the groundbreaking is just the beginning. There’s a lot of work to do to get the carousel rolling.

“We started carving our first animals in January of 2010. And there were a couple of years of prep work before that carving started, but to me it's a continuum and this is just one more step, and there's more work to do,” Reggie Martin said.

The ticket price per ride will only be one buck.

If you’re interested in being one of the first riders before the carousel opens, you can become a sponsor for only $100. For more information, you can visit the project website: www.engagekingsport.com.