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4 things to do in May
Beer, wine, art and racing festivals coming to North Georgia
North Georgia grape vines stretch over a hill in 2017. - photo by Nick Bowman

As the weather heats up, so does the entertainment in North Georgia. May has a full lineup of beer, wine, art and racing (but not at the same time) to help you shake off that wet winter.

Here’s just a taste of what the area has coming up.

Habersham WineFest

When: Noon to 5 p.m. Saturday, May 5

Where: Habersham Winery, 7025 S. Main Street, Helen

Cost: $30 in advance or $35 at the gate, which includes 15 tasting tickets and a souvenir wine glass; additional tasting tickets can be purchased for $5; $10 non-drinker entrance

Celebrating 26 years, the Habersham WineFest returns to its namesake winery on May 5.

More than 60 wines from wineries throughout the state will be available at the winery near Helen.

Many of the wines have won regional, national and international competitions, and wine pours will be one to three tickets each depending on the wine and winery. If you’re feeling adventurous, wine slushies will also be available for purchase.

We know what you’re thinking: Can I bring my fabulous hat to this thing?

Yes, of course: Habersham has organized a hat competition in honor of the Kentucky Derby during WineFest. Attendees are encouraged to wear their best hat for a chance to win some swag.

Tap It Lanier Brew Fest

When: 2-8 p.m. Saturday, May 5

Where: Tap It, 1850 Thompson Bridge Road, Gainesville

Cost: $20 at the door which includes 5 sample tickets and a souvenir cup; DDs get in free

Additional info: 678-897-3985

Looking to celebrate Cinco de Mayo with lots of beer, live music and food trucks? Tap It Lanier Brew Fest has you covered.

Beers from more than 25 breweries will be on hand on Thompson Bridge Road, and there will be $2 Dos Equis all day. General admission comes with five sample tickets and additional tickets can be purchased during the event.

Cousins Maine Lobster, OBA Brazilian-Cuisine and Island Chef Café will be serving up lobster rolls and shrimp tacos. Prefer some turf over surf? OBA will be searing skewers during the festival as well.

Enjoy the food and beer while listening to performances by local musicians Allen Nivens, Jessica Berzack and DJ Edwin Hughes.

Vision 2030 Public Art Block Party

When: 6-10 p.m. Friday, May 11

Where: 200 Main Street, Gainesville (Hunt Tower parking lot)

Cost: $30; includes admission, dinner, your first drink and a surprise gift

“Get happy, buy art” is the motto for the Vision 2030 Public Art Block Party, and it’s going to be hard to not to do just that.

On a budget and need some artwork for the house? This is the event for you. Organizers are hoping to attract a younger audience and those who don’t have the cash for more ambitious pieces of art through a $100 price cap at the block party.

The event will feature a silent auction along with original artwork across all media for sale under $100, so if you see something you like, it won’t break the bank. Atlanta-based Sally King Benedict is the 2018 inaugural block party artist, and will have several pieces for sale.

To liven up the evening, the Homemade Pants Band will perform covers as well as original tunes. The Good Food Truck will be onsite and a cash bar will be available from Downtown Drafts — the first drink is free.

Formula Drift Atlanta

When: Friday and Saturday, May 11-12

Where: Road Atlanta, 5300 Winder Highway, Braselton

Cost: $45 for two-day general admission

Additional info: 1-800-849-7223

You can keep your lilacs and lavender: Nothing compares to the sweet smell of burning a little rubber in the summer, and there will be plenty of that at Road Atlanta in May.

Formula Drift is the premier organization for drifting competition in the United States, celebrating its 15th season in 2018. Road Atlanta is one of two tracks original to the competition, and it’s always a favorite amongst drivers and fans.

For the uninitiated, “drifting” ain’t NASCAR.

The driver’s goal is to keep the car sideways while being judged based on line, angle and style. In addition to the Pro and Pro 2 competitions over the course of Friday and Saturday, spectators can roam through the pits, get up close and personal with the cars and the drivers, and browse from hundreds of vendors selling anything and everything car related.

Regional events