Dahlonega Science Festival
Where: The University of North Georgia, 82 College Cir, Dahlonega
When: March 6-8
How much: Free
More info: www.dahlonegascience.org
Dahlonega Literary Festival
Where: Dahlonega Baptist Church, 234 Hawkins St, Dahlonega
When: March 6-7
How much: FreeMore info: www.literaryfestival.org
“What we realized was that we were complementary and there is certainly a crossover,” said Donna Governor, co-chair of the science festival and professor at The University of North Georgia, which is hosting the science festival. “There is definitely an overlap that we hope to grow more in future years.”
The literary festival is scheduled March 6 and 7 and the science festival will run through March 8. Both festivals are free, except for a couple of events at the literary festival.
Last year, the literary festival drew around 300 people all interested in books and writing, eager to hear authors speak about their process and ideas for books. This year, they’ll have featured authors like Bill Curry, Jacob Appel, Jeffrey Bennett, Cassandra King, Rona Simmons and many more. Myriad regional writers will be there, too.
“People are just hungry to hear writers and how they write and why they write and that sort of thing,” said Sharon Thomason, an organizer for the festival.
The literary festival will take place at a few different places around Dahlonega. The Songwriters’ Cafe on March 6 will be at the Dahlonega Funeral Home where three local singer/songwriters will perform. The cost is $10 to attend.
Workshops, presentations and panels will happen throughout the rest of the weekend at Dahlonega United Methodist Church and Dahlonega Baptist Church.
“It just sort of celebrates reading and writing,” Thomason said of the event.
There will be a few crossover events with the two festivals. Jeffrey Bennett will give a talk titled "Global Warming Demystified — How You Can Make Sense of the Media Debate.” He’ll also host a workshop, “Story Time from Space,” and give another talk, “Einstein for Everyone,” with Jacob Appel.
Both festivals will have themed escape rooms, too.
The science festival is in its third year and has been popular since it started. Last year, Governor said they saw about 1,000 people throughout the weekend.
“We’ll do some of the same things as we did last year,” Governor said. “We have panels and speakers and we have a Discovery Center with hands-on activities.”
But new this year is a focus on environmental activities. They want to bring the environment into the activities to teach children more about it at a young age, something that’s been missing in years past.
There will be shows at the George E. Coleman, Sr. Planetarium. They’ll have hands-on activities and experiments around town for the kids as well as places to make things to take home.
“We're not going to blow anything up,” Governor said, laughing. “That's the one thing we're not going to do. There's going to be so many different types of hands-on activities between the environmental ones and the Makers Fair and the Discovery Center. There’s going to be such a wide range of activities.”
And because of that, Governor said the science festival suits just about every age. There are fun activities for the younger ones and interesting panel discussions for the older folks.
“It's always fun,” Governor said. “Science is fun. It's hands-on, it's interesting, it's a lot of wonder.”
And while the literary festival is geared a little more toward an older crowd — high schoolers and older — Thomason feels the same was about the festivals.
“It’s just a great little small town event,” Thomason said.