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Yellow Daisy Festival celebrates 40 years

STONE MOUNTAIN - Painted pails and buckets, handmade dog collars, leashes and harnesses, hand-cut and painted wooden toys and puzzles, stone jewelry, hand cut metal garden art, pottery pieces and wood crafted signs ... the list of arts and crafts up for sale and on display by Gwinnett residents at the 40th annual Yellow Daisy Festival really could go on and on.

"(This) is the show, the Holy Grail, if you will," said Jim Arnett, a Duluth resident who, with his wife, attends about 40 shows and festivals a year and will have a booth at the Yellow Daisy Festival. The Arnetts will join the more than 500 artists and crafters from 38 states and two countries who will display their works at the four-day event that draws 200,000 people over those four days. With daily live entertainment, activities for children, crafter demonstrations, festival foods and even a Men's Den, this year's festival, which runs Thursday through Sept. 7, likely has something for everyone.

"Over the past forty years, the Yellow Daisy Festival has featured an extraordinary collection of artists from all types of backgrounds," said Jeanine Battle, special events manager for Stone Mountain Park. "These artists have influenced the hearts and minds of an estimated eight million shoppers, which include multiple generations of grandmothers, mothers and daughters."

New this year, the festival will be promoting environmental awareness by providing free reusable shopping bags made of biodegradable materials, and recycling bins will be placed throughout the festival grounds.

Gwinnett artists, vendors

A number of crafters and artists from Gwinnett will have booths set up at the festival showcasing their talents. Here's a look at some of the Gwinnett residents you can see at this year's event.

Amanda Berry

Amanda Berry has been in business - Acrylic Creations is the name of her company - for about 15 years, and she has sold her wares for the past five years at the Yellow Daisy Festival. Berry, a Dacula resident, paints small pails and buckets as well as works on canvas. She focuses on children's designs, adorning her metal items with flowers, fairies, frogs, rubber ducks, butterflies, dump trucks and tractors. She will be personalizing her pieces and giving painting demonstrations during the festival.

"It's so much fun," Berry said. "And there's so many people I know."

Thomas Burns

What started as a creative side project and a way to connect with Georgia's history has become part of a full-time job for Norcross resident Thomas Burns.

After moving to Atlanta 10 years ago, Burns began using his experience in graphic design to create prints that highlight well-known and historic Atlanta landmarks - the prints evoke the feeling of travel posters from the 1920s and 1930s that showcased landmarks as travel destinations.

"It was sort of like a way for me to get to know the history of the city," Burns said of his project. "Why not kind of elevate those architectural landmarks in Atlanta? I thought it would be fun to kind of do that, explore the history of the city."

Jim and Joyce Arnett

If you've never heard the name of their company, which makes Smack Yo Mama barbecue sauce, you might do a double take at Jim and Joyce Arnett's booth. And no, the Duluth residents don't really want you to hit your mother, Jim said. But they would like for you to try their barbecue and hot sauces, which, according to their Web site, are so delicious they may cause temporary insanity and make you consider doing something you would never do otherwise - take a swing at your mama. The Arnetts would prefer, however, that you give your mother another type of smack - a big, wet kiss on the cheek. Just make sure you wipe any of that sauce off first.

Entertainment

Here's a look at the entertainment schedule:

Thursday

· 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. - Mustangs (Rock 'n' roll)

· 1 to 2:30 p.m. - Packway Handle Band (Bluegrass)

· 2:45 to 4 p.m. - A1A (Jimmy Buffett Tribute Band)

· 4:30 to 6 p.m. - Alias Smith & Jones (Classic folk and rock)

Sept. 5

· 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. - Three Ring Circus (Classic rock)

· 1 to 2:30 p.m. - Tim Dugger & Dirt Road Band (Country)

· 2:45 to 4 p.m. - The Barnrats (Bluegrass)

· 4:30 to 6 p.m. - Corie Jean & The Posse (Country variety)

Sept. 6

· 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. - M&M Band (Oldies)

· 1 to 2:30 p.m. - Vortex Park (Bluegrass)

· 2:45 to 4 p.m. - The Corduroy Road (Bluegrass)

· 4:30 to 5:45 p.m. - Timeless Highway (Traditional country)

· 6 to 7 p.m. - Brandi Thorton (New country)

Sept. 7

· 11 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. - Delta Moon (Americana)

· 1 to 2:30 p.m. - Geoff Achison (Blues)

· 2:45 to 4 p.m. - Heaven Davis (R&B)

· 4:30 to 6 p.m. - Andrew Black (rock)