Bear on the Square
When: April 16-18
Where: Downtown Dahlonega
How much: Free admission for events around the square
Bluegrass, roots and country music will share the stage at this year’s annual Bear on the Square festival, which will take place April 16-18 in downtown Dahlonega.
MainStage Tent headliners include Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper, Jesse McReynolds and The Virginia Boys, The Dixie Bee-Liners, singers Ginny Hawker and Tracy Schwarz, Kari Sickenberger, John Lilly and Curtis Jones and Mountain Gypsy Project.
Michael Cleveland and Flamekeeper have won multiple International Bluegrass Music Association awards, Jesse McReynolds and the Virginia Boys is led by the surviving member of the legendary bluegrass brother duo of Jim and Jesse, and Dahlonega resident Curtis Jones fronts the Mountain Gypsy Project. Jones has performed for audiences around the world.
Musicians will be set up on the lawn of the Dahlonega Gold Museum and other points around the square. And from 1:30-5:30 p.m. on the first day of the festival, Southeastern Bluegrass Association members Estill Nicholson and Friends will lead a jam on the square. Throughout the weekend there will be music workshops, along with an old-time mountain dance planned for Saturday night.
Several other headliners and regional groups will perform Saturday and Sunday of the festival just north of the square. Scheduled performers include The Buzzard Mountain Boys, Gold Rush with Neel Pender, the Georgia Mudcats, High Windy, Whitepath, Camp Creek Committee, The Rosin Sisters, Curley Maple and the Georgia Pick and Bow Traditional Music School. The final act on Saturday will be a honky tonk night-in-the-round featuring Ginny Hawker, Tracy Schwarz, Kari Sickenberger, John Lilly, Sonny Houston, Neel Pender and Dan Martin.
Along with the music, Bear on the Square will also feature traditional arts and crafts, a juried art show and special performances by members of the John C. Campbell Folk School, one of the major sponsors of the event.