Visit Knoxville is proud to partner with Knoxville natives Guinn and Derek Boyce to present a first-ever, hand-crafted glass ornament of the Sunsphere.
The Boyces commissioned the ornament from Joy to the World Collectibles, a Knoxville-based company. Each ornament is meticulously crafted by hand by European artisans. Ornaments will be available for purchase at the Knoxville Visitors Center located at 301 S. Gay Street and online at sunspherefund.com. Cost of the ornament is $55 plus tax. Five dollars from the purchase of each ornament will go to the Sunsphere Fund, a fund created by Visit Knoxville, with the City’s support, to help preserve and maintain this beloved city icon. Ornaments may be shipped for an additional fee or a free pickup location may be selected. Only 500 Sunsphere ornaments will be available before Christmas 2019. Additional ornaments will be available for purchase in January 2020.
The idea for the ornament originated with Knoxville natives Guinn and Derek Boyce. The couple wanted to give back to the city they are proud to call home and reached out to Lisa Kelechava, President and Founder of Joy to the World Collectibles, along with the City of Knoxville and Visit Knoxville. The Sunsphere is owned by the City of Knoxville and promoted like other attractions by Visit Knoxville, who manages the experience on the 4th floor Observation Deck. The City provided the Boyces with permission to use the image of the Sunsphere to create the ornament.
“The importance of the place the Sunsphere holds in our hearts and in our city cannot be overstated,” said Kim Bumpas, President of Visit Knoxville. “Our partnership with the ornament project supports this iconic structure with a must-have for this holiday season and an heirloom for years to come.”
“We hope to see this grow into something bigger and better than we can imagine, and by partnering with Visit Knoxville we think that can be achieved,” said Guinn Boyce. To learn more about Guinn and Derek Boyce and the story behind their passion for the Sunsphere, visit knoxsunfund.com.
ABOUT THE SUNSPHERE
Since 1982, the Sunsphere, the symbol of the 1982 World’s Fair, has served as an iconic feature of the Knoxville skyline. It’s the only structure of its kind in the world. After the World’s Fair, with brief exception, the Sunsphere was closed to the public. It reopened after renovation in 2007. In 2014, in an effort to provide an enhanced experience for visitors and locals, Visit Knoxville updated the 4th Floor Observation Deck with new graphics and information on Knoxville and the World’s Fair. Since that time the Sunsphere has welcomed countless visitors from (rather appropriately) around the world.
Designed by the architecture firm Community Tectonics as the theme structure for the 1982 World's Fair, the Sunsphere is noted for its unique design and stands 266 feet high/26 stories tall. The 24-karat gold-dust filled, glass-paneled ball is 75 feet in diameter. Each pane of glass is made with 24-karat gold giving the Sphere its reflective gold color and each pane cost around $1,000 at the time of construction.
ABOUT JOY TO THE WORLD COLLECTIBLES
Joy to the World Collectibles is a Knoxville-based company that has been creating the world’s finest holiday ornaments since 1988. Joy to the World strives to offer collectors the very best in quality and design. All ornaments are still handcrafted in Joy to the World’s studio in Poland with the very best glass and quality that can only be achieved in Europe. To learn more, visit www.joytotheworldonline.com.
ABOUT VISIT KNOXVILLE
Visit Knoxville (Knoxville Convention and Visitors Bureau) is the official CVB for the City of Knoxville and Knox County. Visit Knoxville is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, private company that works together with the community, business leaders and local and state government to further develop Knoxville as a premier meetings, sports, film and travel destination. For more information, visit www.visitknoxville.com.
Director of Communications