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Local musicians tune up for annual June Jam
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Mitch Farmer June Jam
When: Gates open at 5 p.m.; concert 6-11 p.m. Saturday
Where: Brenau Amphitheater, Prior Street, Gainesville
How much: Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the gate; kids 12 and younger are free
More info: 770-654-9323

Following the death of its founder, Gainesville’s annual June Jam might feel a little different this year — but the musicians are still going to give it their all.

Mitch Farmer, a local Realtor who started June Jam four years ago, passed away in January. Since then, his friends and family have continued with the event.

And performers are promising a fun-filled evening.

“We’re going to try to keep it uplifing — upbeat — because that was Mitch’s personality,” said Peggie Hoskins of Peggie Hoskins & The Vertigo Band, one of five bands taking the stage on Saturday.

Hoskins, who has performed at past June Jams, said the “spirit” of the event might be different this year, with some moments of sadness as people remember Farmer.

Nevertheless, she said the music will be exciting and full of energy.

“All kinds of music will be covered,” Hoskins said. “It’s just a great five-hour concert. It’s just going to be one after the other.”
Her band’s versatile music alone will fill a spectrum of genres, including funk, rock, blues and pop.

The show benefits Court Appointed Special Advocates and Emory University’s Mason Guest House, which provides housing for family members of patients undergoing organ transplants.

“I think it’s a way for everybody to get together and pull together for the same great cause,” Hoskins said. “A lot of people love Mitch too, so it’s going to be really cool to see everyone in one venue honoring him through music, because Mitch loved music, too.”

Allen Nivens, who will perform a mix of rock and country music, plans to “leave it all on the stage” for both the concertgoers and to honor Farmer.

“Mitch Farmer ... was absolutely one of the kindest, most gentle souls I’ve ever known in my entire life,” Nivens said. “He’s truly one of the greatest people I’ve ever known.”

For Ted Tuck, lead singer for the King Daddy Polecats, the sheer quality of the acts is enough reason to come out and see the show.

“For the price of the ticket, you’re getting five amazing acts,” Tuck said. “You would easily pay that much to see just one of them.”

Tickets are $25 in advance and $30 at the gate. Attendees also can buy raffle items, with proceeds benefitting Olivia Farmer, Mitch Farmer’s daughter.

Food will be available from The Varsity, and there also will be a silent auction. The event takes place Saturday at 6 p.m. at the Brenau Amphitheatre.

Matthew Meeks, an organizer for the event, described the show as family-oriented fun.

“I think it’s going to have a little more sentimental value because so many people knew and loved Mitch,” he said. “I think it’s going to have a little more sentimental meaning, but at the same time it’s going to be very fun, of course.”

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