HAYESVILLE, NC – Just a ten mile drive from Hiawassee, Georgia, sits Hayesville, the county seat of Clay County, North Carolina, a quaint town with a rich history. This weekend, Hayesville will host the 35th annual Festival on the Square in the heart of downtown. Weather-permitting, the event is sure to draw crowds of all ages, both local and visitors alike.
Sponsored by the Clay County Historical and Arts Council (CCHAC), Festival on the Square begins at 7 p.m. Friday, July 13, with live music and a street dance, and runs from Saturday, July 14, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., through Sunday, July 15, from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m.
The Friday evening dance party will feature contra and round dancing music by Bob Dalsimer and the Ad Hoc String Band, and entertainment by Caromia Tiller, Jason Kenny, Gnarly Fingers, and the Sweetheart Cloggers.
The surrounding street will close prior to the start of the festival, with organizers recommending an early arrival.
Approximately 70 crafters are expected to participate in this year’s weekend event, featuring art such as photography, wood carvings, yard decor, jewelry, soap, candles, gourds, handmade fishing poles, and a variety of other unique items. Entertainment will be provided throughout the event, with bands, soloists, and dancers taking to the gazebo stage. The festival will include a children’s tent, complete with face-painting and fun crafts. Barbequed chicken and pork will be available for purchase, with proceeds benefitting the local Old Jail Museum and other artistic and historic projects. In addition, the event promises other festive fare, such as hot dogs, homemade baked goods, ice cream, soft drinks, and fresh-squeezed lemonade.
History lovers will enjoy the Old Jail Musuem, open both days of the event, and situated just a short distance from the Square itself. ‘Clay County: Then and Now,’ authored by Carl Moore, will be available for purchase at the festival’s information booth, with souvenier t-shirts and hats sold to benefit the CCHAC.
Admission is free. Pets are not permitted, with the exception of service dogs.
Of note, WiFi has been installed on Hayesville Square, with some vendors capable of offering purchases via credit card.
(Feature Photo: Historic Clay County Courthouse on Hayesville Square)