Even though there was a little rain during the Bluesberry and Beer Festival’s parade in Norcross, Mother Nature couldn’t manage to damper the spirits of attendees who came out to hear the blues and have some fun.

A rain storm caused a delay that cut Beverly “Guitar” Watkins’ performance a few minutes short midway through the festival. The weather let up at about 7 p.m., though, and the music continued, and attendees responded by getting up and dancing.

“We had a little bit of rain that slowed us up a bit, but everybody still came out,” festival organizer Mike Holley said.

This year marked the ninth time the festival has been held, in what has become a Norcross tradition at Betty Mauldin Park. The lineup included Beverly “Guitar” Watkins, Cody Matlock, Albert White, the Real Deal Blues Band, Wasted Potential and the Cazanovas.

The festival won the approval of Norcross resident Hannah Carter, a first time attendee who said she was intrigued when she saw Bluesberry and Beer Festival logos appearing on the sidewalk. She came to the event with Roswell resident Justin Eidson, a blues fan who said he enjoyed the bands.

“These guys are really good,” Eidson said.

Carter said part of the allure of the blues is how it affects people’s mood when they start to hear it.

“It gets everybody in a good mood and dancing, and it’s just a fun time,” she said.

Attendees could get beer — if they were old enough — from tap trucks parked alongside the park, but the music was the real star of the afternoon and night as attendees got on their feet and danced to the tunes.

Members of the ATL Blues Dance group came to the festival after hearing about it on Facebook.

“It’s fantastic,” Atlanta resident Margaret Tilson, a member of the group, said during a break. “We love getting to dance to live music and the bands they have here are wonderful.”

Another member of the group, Greg Mann, said the lineup was a big draw.

“We dance pretty regularly to a lot of these bands, so to see them all together is really great,” he said.

Other attendees were equally jazzed about the festival and the opportunity to cut loose and have some fun.

“I’ve really enjoyed it,” Dawsonville resident Tim Lambert said. “I was in Maine for the last 17 years and I’ve been down here for a month and it’s really great to get back out with people who enjoy outdoor festivals.”

I'm a Crawford Long baby who grew up in Marietta and eventually wandered to the University of Southern Mississippi for college. Earned a BA in journalism (double minor in political science and history). Previously worked in Florida and Clayton County.

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