Dillard festival may be Rabun's best-kept secret

  • Bluegrass bands will be playing nearly non-stop this weekend at the 23rd annual Dillard Bluegrass and Barbecue Festival.
    Bluegrass bands will be playing nearly non-stop this weekend at the 23rd annual Dillard Bluegrass and Barbecue Festival.
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DILLARD—For 23 years, the Dillard Bluegrass and Barbecue Benefit Festival has been playing to packed houses.

Yet it may be one of the community’s best-kept secrets.

“We’ve attracted as many as 5,000 people,” said Hank Belew of Clayton, one of the organizers of the event. “That’s a fairly typical number for us. We’re the biggest event and the oldest continuously-running event in Rabun County. We’re the largest draw in the county, with the least publicity.”

This year’s festival is being held at the Dillard City Hall Fairgrounds Friday and Saturday, and promises two days of family fun, live Bluegrass music, tasty food, kids’ games, arts and crafts, free professional cooking classes and a historical exhibit.

The Dillard Bluegrass and Barbecue Festival is, after all, part of the year-long celebration of the 200th anniversary of the founding of Rabun County.

“Glenda Enloe (Dillard city clerk) has done a whale of a job,” Belew said of this historical exhibit that will be offered free to the public at city hall.

Tickets to the festival itself are $15 per day or $25 for two days.

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