Ok­to­ber­fest at Chat­tanooga Mar­ket is among the op­tions for all fes­ti­val fun this week­end

CRAFTS SHOWS, HER­ITAGE FES­TI­VALS AND OK­TO­BER­FEST ON TAP THIS WEEK­END

Chattanooga Times Free Press - ChattanoogaNow - - FRONT PAGE - BY SU­SAN PIERCE

Al­though this isn’t the big­gest fes­ti­val week­end in terms of quan­tity, it is big in qual­ity. A num­ber of es­tab­lished and an­tic­i­pated events take place this week­end: Prater’s Mill Coun­try Fair, New Salem Moun­tain Fes­ti­val, El­li­jay Ap­ple Fes­ti­val and Ok­to­ber­fest at Chat­tanooga Mar­ket.

The an­nual Marsh House fes­ti­val is set for Satur­day, but un­der a new name: Au­tumn Rocks. This free event in LaFayette, Ge­or­gia, com­bines arts and crafts with a her­itage fes­ti­val. Tours of the 1836 Marsh House are given, Vic­to­rian games are played and Civil War re-en­ac­tors share the grounds with mod­ern fun such as in­flat­a­bles and lo­cal bands.

New Salem Moun­tain Fes­ti­val is mark­ing its 44th year of cel­e­brat­ing the cre­ativ­ity of re­gional artists. Faye Ni­chols says more than 100 artists will be ex­hibit­ing in this pop­u­lar out­door show that draws thou­sands of vis­i­tors over two days.

In ad­di­tion to those ex­hibits, a spe­cial Moun­tain Gallery is al­ways held in­doors at New Salem fea­tur­ing some of the best work of each ex­hibitor.

All pro­ceeds from this sale go right back into the com­mu­nity, ben­e­fit­ing New Salem Com­mu­nity Cen­ter and New Salem Fire and Res­cue.

Prater’s Mill Coun­try Fair is also a fundraiser, be­gun by vol­un­teers in 1971 to raise money to re­store the his­toric 1855 mill and sur­round­ing build­ings. That grass-roots event has grown to more than 165 artists and crafters — 40 of those new this year — and 30 food ven­dors.

Over the two-day event, clog­gers and mu­si­cians will per­form, and there will be dul­cimer mu­sic by Pat Bryant and Steve Wix­son play­ing rhythm bones on the mill porch.

Wear com­fort­able shoes be­cause this fes­ti­val is so big, it’s on both sides of Ge­or­gia High­way 2.

If you’re l ook­ing f or small-town charm, head up I-75 to Athens, Ten­nessee, where Pump­kin­town will be in full swing Satur­day. The en­tire town square is dec­o­rated with hay bales, corn stalks tied with fes­tive rib­bons to light poles, and, of course, pump­kins. There is even Pump­kin Plinko on Jack­son Street from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Mered­ith Will­son says there will be live mu­sic on stages at the court­house steps, Mar­ket Park pavil­ion and Down­town Diesel on White Street.

The Scott Crisp Memo­rial Pow­wow is a fes­ti­val high­light that presents Amer­i­can In­dian mu­sic, danc­ing, demon­stra­tions and crafts.

Athens’ Liv­ing Her­itage Mu­seum will hold its 30th quilt show and cel­e­brate the openi ng of the Bat­tle of Athens ex­hibit with a book sign­ing by Steve Byrum at 2: 30 p. m. Fuller’s Frame Shop will host artist Lisa Bell, who makes art­work from your pet’s paws and sells the work to ben­e­fit the McMinn Re­gional Hu­mane So­ci­ety.

How­ever, be­fore get­ting your pet’s paw painted, en­ter your ca­nine buddy in the 10: 30 a.m. Mutt Strut and pet cos­tume con­test. ›

Break out your leder­ho­sen and dirndl skirts; it’s Ok­to­ber­fest at Chat­tanooga Mar­ket on Satur­day and Sun­day.

Bring the fam­ily to en­joy Ger­man food, oompah mu­sic from the Wurst­brats and polka danc­ing — and maybe work in a chicken dance be­fore you leave. Ok­to­ber­fest in­cludes a bier­garten fea­tur­ing 99 lo­cal and sea­sonal craft brews.

Satur­day’s fes­ti­val will cul­mi­nate with the crown­ing of Mr. and Ms. Chat­tanooga Ok­to­ber­fest that evening.

New this year: Ok­to­ber­fest Chat­tanooga Chal­lenge bike ride. Rid­ers may choose be­tween a full 100-mile cen­tury or a 50-mile half-cen­tury route.

STAFF FILE PHOTO BY DOUG STRICKLAND

Vis­i­tors walk the grounds at the 2017 Prater’s Mill Coun­try Fair in Dal­ton, Ge­or­gia. More than 165 crafters and artists will show in this week­end’s fes­ti­val.

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