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Bluegrass festival coming to Flowery Branch

If you’re looking for a way to relax outside as the weather cools off, Bluegrass on the Green next weekend in Flowery Branch might be the event for you.

The inaugural fundraising festival for the Flowery Branch Police Department Explorer Post 600 is set for 3-8 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 12, outside the City Hall building. The event is free, but donations for the Explorer Post will be accepted.

“Really what it comes down to is we're just trying to create a family-friendly environment that's laid back where everybody can kind of bring a blanket, throw it out on the lawn, enjoy the music and let the kids play,” said Matthew Mahathey, a corporal with the police department and lead advisor with the Explorer Post. “Just eat some good food, hang out and enjoy the evening.”

There will be bounce houses, a hay ride, photo booth and more for the kids to enjoy while you wait for the Chuck Nation Band to perform at 5 p.m. The police department will be selling hotdogs, hamburgers and boiled peanuts, too, with all proceeds going to the Explorer Post.

The Explorer Post gives teens a chance to meet with officers once a week for training on what it takes to be a police officer. Mahathey said it’s “kind of like a glorified, intensified internship.”

They also have the chance to travel regionally and nationally for competitions focusing on the skills of policing.

“The goal is for us to be able to raise enough money to fund the mission of the Explorer Post,” Mahathey said. “We recognize there is financial strain on a lot of families and that trying to let them participate in another event is sometimes not possible because of the cost.”

So with the help of the community at the Bluegrass on the Green festival, the police department is hoping to not only help the eight students who are already a part of the Explorer Post, but make it a possibility for even more to join. 

All of the money raised goes toward offsetting the cost of equipment, uniforms and travel for current and future students.

Mahathey said deciding on bluegrass as the genre of music that will be played was an easy decision. They realize Flowery Branch has more of a small, hometown atmosphere, so they wanted to match that with the music being played.

So, if you want to enjoy that small town feel with a little bluegrass music and all the while support a good cause, the Bluegrass on the Green festival is a can’t miss event.

“It's more of a casual, mellow kind of environment with that kind of music,” Mahathey said. “And that's what we were going for. A lot of times, with different events, there's a rock band or whatever, it's very loud and a lot of stuff going on. We were just trying to make sure it seemed more like a family event where people can relax.”