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Inaugural fest this weekend
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The Dawson County Chamber of Commerce has big plans for its inaugural Mountains on My Mind Festival, scheduled for 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. June 11 at chamber headquarters off Ga. 400.

The event is scheduled to feature food vendors, activities for children, including a petting zoo and more.

Billed as a regional event, the festival will feature representatives and vendors from surrounding counties and destinations as well.

"We're hoping for a good turnout," said Vice President Marty Williams. "We hope the success of this year's event will build in coming years as well."

Williams said it will feature "a good cross section of participants and vendors."

The event's aim, he said, is to provide entertainment and education regarding the attractions that can be found all around Northeast Georgia.

He said the chamber's new location on Ga. 400 shouldn't hurt attendance.

"All those 30,000 cars that go by on Saturday mornings headed to the mountains ... some of them know what they're going to do and some of them don't," he said.

"If we can get them in for the festival, we can tell them what all there is to do in the mountains," he added.

Williams had pitched the idea to the Northeast Georgia Travel Association, which includes the 17 counties in Northeast Georgia.

"They all seemed to love the idea, so hopefully it's going to take some good shape. We're looking forward to it," he said.

Those visiting may also learn information for current or future trips to the mountains including family vacations, reunions and group getaways.

Cheryl Smith, regional tourism representative for the Georgia Tourism Division, said the festival is "a great way for folks traveling along Georgia's Hospitality Highway to find out about all the great things to see and do, not only in Dawsonville, but throughout North Georgia."

For more information about the Mountains on My Mind Festival, call (706) 265-6278, or visit