JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) –Visit Johnson City, the organizer for the “Meet the Mountains” festival, is gearing up for what it’s saying will be the largest, most complex festival Johnson City has seen.

The festival had to change locations earlier this year because of ongoing construction in Founders Park, where it’s normally held. This year’s event will take place at Winged Deer Park.

While moving event items out of their storage room today, festival director Ashley Cavender said the only downside is the lack of convenience, as storing items in their office across the street from Founders Park and walking it over for the event was a perk.

“The shift has been so positive,” said Cavender. “The community has been so positive and receptive and we are actually really, really excited to have this bigger venue.”

Cavender says they’re excited about using the larger space Winged Deer provides. She says they have doubled their vendors for this year and plan to use the lake.

Winged Deer is seeing its own construction of a new athletic complex. Cavender says the construction is happening on the opposite side of the park from where the event will be and will not affect traffic.

Cavender hopes the festival will attract other events to be held at the park, as well.

“Now that we’ve been planning it at Winged Deer, we were like, ‘Why haven’t we thought about this before?’,” said Cavender. “But, the lake was down for so long, so we really didn’t think about the lakefront as a location.”

Organizers say this year is being treated as a “test run” for Winged Deer Park as a possible location for next year. That will not officially be decided for a while, but Cavender said they will look at the numbers and get feedback from the community.

Organizers don’t expect the change in location to stop people from attending, with an estimated 10,000 people expected to enjoy the festival.

“It’s been a great joy having this festival in downtown Johnson City, but putting it in Winged Deer’s lakefront, truly almost is the center of Northeast Tennessee, makes the event more accessible to the entirety of our region,” said Visit Johnson City’s Director of Sales and Public Relations, Alec Castro.

Johnson City officials say construction in Founders Park is nearly complete, with a small segment of fencing that needs to be reinstalled.

“Meet the Mountains” will be at the lakefront of Winged Deer Park, Friday from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.

The full schedule for the festival can be found here.