HIAWASSEE, Ga. – The hot, humid weather didn’t discourage a strong turnout of visitors to watch a caravan of floats, vintage vehicles, horse-drawn wagons, and revellers celebrate the annual opening of the Georgia Mountain Fair. The parade route began at South State Bank at 11 am Saturday, July 20, near Hiawassee Town Square, and slowly made its way to the fairgrounds.
This year’s theme was “Making Memories since 1950.” Businesses, organizations, and government agencies participated in the fun, tossing candy to children along the way. Miss Georgia Mountain Fair, Katie Walsh, rode with her court on the Towns County Lions Club float. Towns County Historial Society created a float in honor of Fiddlin’ Howard Cunningham. Towns County GOP handed out 250 American flags, along with bottled water to thirsty spectators. The City of Hiawassee participated by riding the route in a pulled pontoon boat, with council members and Hiawassee Mayor Liz Ordiales walking nearby.
The 69th annual Georgia Mountain Fair, held at the historic Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds, runs through Saturday, July 27. “Thousands of visitors from across the region have experienced the excitement and nostalgia that the event has to offer,” the fair’s website reads. “With first class musical performances, arts & crafts, fun carnival rides, unique attractions and a glimpse into North Georgia’s rich history and culture, the Fair provides something for every member of the family.”
Feature Image: Cloggers representing the Georgia Mountain Fair
Hiawassee, GA – In spite of the harsh morning heat, spectators gathered along Highway 76 on Saturday, July 22, for the Annual Georgia Mountain Fair Parade. Onlookers of all ages began arriving an hour in advance to stake coveted viewing spots in the shade. This year, 2017, marks the 67th Anniversary of the Georgia Mountain Fair’s inception which runs through Saturday, July 29, of this year.
The parade began promptly at 11:00 a.m. and traveled west through town from Park Sterling Bank to its final destination, the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds. Grand Marshal Billy Clark and his wife, Ann, lead the way. Georgia Mountain Fair’s General Manager, Hilda Thomason, provided details on Grand Marshal Clark saying, “Billy is 71-years-old, has worked at carnivals since he was 15-years-old, and got his start at the Georgia Mountain Fair in the 1950s. He owned a carnival which he sold last year. We thought it would be nice to have him as our Grand Marshal in this year’s parade.”
Floats created by the Towns County Lions Club and Brasstown Manor followed closely behind the black convertible which carried Mr. Clark. Vintage cars from different eras and a variety of jeeps also partook in the event. Many of the participants tossed candy to the children eagerly waiting along the sidewalks. The small town parade commenced with a group of horseback riders, waving to the crowds as they passed by.
The Georgia Mountain Fair is located on Highway 76, between the towns of Hiawassee and Young Harris. Admission is $12. Children 12 and under are free.
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