Moonshiners, racing fans, and shoppers will descend on Dawsonville this weekend for the 46th annual KARE for Kids Mountain Moonshine Festival.
Conservative estimates say that more than 80,000 visitors will hit the streets to enjoy music, food, and products from more than 700 vendors.
On Friday, the festival kicks off at 9 a.m. at the Dawsonville Municipal Complex with a rolling car show that features 1958 and older vintage models. Starting at 5 p.m., a Cruise-In and Swap Meet is planned at the Georgia Racing Hall of Fame, along with a concert featuring Frances Mooney & Fontanna, Southern Accent, Sunset Band, and Georgia Music Awards Best Female Country Vocalist of the Year, Angela Reign. Admission is $5 per person.
Vendor booths will be open Saturday, Oct. 26, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. A parade around the Dawsonville square starts at 9 a.m. Saturday.
Roads are closed beginning at 5 p.m. Friday around downtown Dawsonville including: Highway 53 heading east/west between Lloyd Seay and Gober Sosebee streets; Academy Avenue between Lloyd Seay and Highway 53. All north-south roads between Tucker and Howard Avenues are also closed.
Whats new this year is that Academy Avenue will be closed, said Sgt. Greg Rowan with the Dawson County sheriffs office. In previous years, it had been open. Also, several streets will be one-way only during the festival.
Roads will re-open Sunday at approximately 9 p.m., Rowan said.
Dawson County deputies will direct traffic around the perimeter of the city.
We encourage local citizens to be patient. They can get where theyre going, said Rowan. It will take a little more time to drive around. Its all about safety; were working with KARE for Kids to prevent any injuries or backups.
Parking for the festival is available throughout the city. Official parking lots are marked with KARE for Kids signs. Parking costs $5 with proceeds going to KARE.
Port-a-potties are available in several areas. (See map inside todays Moonshine Festival Guide.)
KARE for Kids volunteers are available to answer questions.
Last year, KARE for Kids provided Christmas presents to more than 700 children in Dawson County.
This year, its a good idea to bundle up. Local forecasts are calling for frigid weather Friday evening with temperatures dropping into the upper 20s. Saturday will be mostly sunny with a high of 57, and Sunday calls for 64 and partly cloudy. No rain is the forecast.