Gwen Frazier points out a bird house she wants to purchase from artist Virgil Hoffman from the Fox Hollow Gallery booth which specializes in re-purposed, rustic garden art during the 45th annual Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park on Thursday. The arts and crafts festival features more than 400 crafters and runs through Sunday. (Staff Photo: Brendan Sullivan)
45th Yellow Daisy Festival
Thousands attend the 45th annual Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park on Thursday. The arts and crafts festival features more than 400 crafters and runs through Sunday.
STONE MOUNTAIN — Thursday morning, Jo Smith of Decatur made sure to meet up with her sister for a day of shopping.
It wasn’t for the typical mall sale or antique store. The two made plans to browse and purchase goodies at the 45th annual Yellow Daisy Festival at Stone Mountain Park.
“I’m a fan of pottery and I’ve had too much success (today),” Smith said. She had found a casserole dish, two soup mugs and two coffee mugs at Stewart Pottery’s tent.
“I have some gifts and things for me, too,” she said, patting her bag of loot. “We come every year we (can get together), my sister and I. We have learned to come the first day, but I will say any day you come is fun.”
The sisters weren’t the only ones out for arts and crafts. Hundreds of eager shoppers made it out to Stone Mountain to look through hundreds of tents with thousands of products.
When the festival started 45 years ago, it was held at two picnic pavilions at Stone Mountain Park. Now, it has grown into the Southeast’s largest outdoor arts and crafts festival.
“Our mission is to reconnect families and friends with fun, shopping, live entertainment and good food, ” said Janet Bell, Stone Mountain Park’s special events manager. “I always enjoy seeing moms, daughters, grandmothers, best friends and neighbors meandering the wooded trails together in search of the perfect treasure.”
More than 400 vendors have set up shop throughout the “streets” of the festival. The tent of this year’s featured artist, Rebecca Willoughby, is close to sponsor row, near the front entrance.
She has been creating nature paintings for years and designed this year’s Yellow Daisy T-shirt with three yellow flowers and a dragonfly.
“I am so excited about being the featured artist for the Yellow Daisy Festival,” Willoughby said. “Having loved my family visits to Stone Mountain Park and previously working there, being the featured artist is like coming full circle in my personal life and professional career.”
Almost every form of art is present at the four-day festival, including jewelry, paintings, sculptures, magnets, mixed-media, wood, pounded metal and then some.
Not everyone will want to look through the tents though. For them, there are other activities keep the whole family entertained. For the kiddies, there’s a Children’s Corner with face painting, a magic show, a crafting area and storytelling time.
For the men, organizers set up a Men’s Den with two televisions — only showing sports — and comfortable chairs. These guys can watch the game under the cover of the Fireside Pavilion.
The food selections include several food trucks on site as well as other booths selling everything from kettle corn and funnel cakes to nachos and burgers.
Next to the food tent, live music cranks out from the music stage. There are many performers taking stage throughout the festival with The Swon Brothers headlining Sunday night.
Brothers Zach and Colton Swon found their claim to fame when they finished in the top three on NBC’s reality music show, “The Voice.”
Attendees are encouraged to stay for the Lasershow Spectacular in MountainVision Saturday night.
The Yellow Daisy Festival runs through Sunday.