KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) – Bays Mountain Park and Planetarium was awarded a $100,000 grant from the Tennessee Department of Tourist Development.

A release from the City of Kingsport states the grant will be used to help restore Bays Mountain Park’s observation tower about a half mile from the Nature Center. According to park leaders, the tower is in need of renovations after weather and general usage over several years took its toll.

“The restoration project calls for new railing and decking to be installed and reinforcing the structure of the tower,” the release states.

Kingsport must match 30% of the grant, which the City said will come from donations and pledges from various individuals and organizations. The estimated cost of the project is $177,000, and the City already has $90,000 in donations, according to the release.

“Bays Mountain Park is excited to receive funding from this competitive grant program,” Park Manager Megan Krager said in the release. “After these much-needed renovations, we’re hoping the observation tower will become as popular an attraction with our guests as the fire tower.”

The Tennessee Tourism Enhancement Grant awarded to the park was one of 29 given to communities across the state.