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Along the Georgia Mountain Parkway one of the main attractions are the seasonal events held at the Georgia Mountain Fairgrounds in Hiawassee.
Its Fall Festival is a popular destination for “leaf peepers” who come from throughout the Southeast to view the colors of Georgia’s Blue Ridge Mountains.
As you leave the museum, a working mill grinds wheat into flour.
On the far side of the mill is the Carnival Grounds, where animal acts entertain the kids. Climb the hill towards the entrance, then turn left to visit this area.
The sawmill at the Georgia Mountains Fall Festival recreates the traditional sawmill of the mid 1800’s with men turning logs with traditional equipment of the period (but powered by electricity) including a circular saw.
When in full production a mill like this could turn out 2000 board feet of lumber a day.
Whether you are looking for the vendors, food, or Anderson Music Hall turn right immediately after entering the park and follow the asphalt-paved path through the vendor area.
A wide variety of crafts are offered here including hand-woven blankets and hand-sewn quilts, belts made while you wait, one-of-a-kind clothes, even birdhouses.
Unless you have a spot reserved, don't count on getting one. The National Park Service also runs a 30 space Lake Chatuge campground (Take U. 76 northwest from Hiawassee for 2 miles; turn left (south) on Georgia 288 for 1 mile.) Other Lodging in Hiawassee, GA and other nearby cities includes upscale lodging (The Ridges, formally Fieldstone Inn or Brasstown Valley Resort), or visit Enota Mountain Retreat a nearby resort with camping, RV pads, or lodge-style cabins.
Make sure to visit the sawmill while it’s in operation.
The concept of a small, family-run saw mill has been lost in the Georgia Mountains since the early 1900’s.
He is a member of the County Music Hall of Fame and Georgia Music Hall of Fame.
His talent is far-reaching, since his credits include a stint as a game show host and as a soap opera actor.
The first area as you enter the Fairground (and the last area as you leave) is for vendors.