Discover Shelby Festival set for October 1st

Published 3:37 pm Monday, September 26, 2022

By SASHA JOHNS | Special to the Reporter

COLUMBIANA – Discover Shelby Fest is a music and wine festival set to be held at Shelby County Arts Council on Saturday, Oct. 1 at Old Mill Square in Columbiana, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.

Festival attendees can expect to hear four regional music acts and will have the opportunity to sample wines from local wine producers in the area.

Admission to the event will be free for all, and guests are encouraged to bring lawn chairs and blankets, but no coolers. Food trucks will be available, and wine sampling arm bands can be purchased for $15, and the price will include a commemorative cup to be used for the sampling of wines from local vineyards and wineries. Lewis Lakes, Corbin Farms, Hidden Meadows and Morgan Creek will all be represented at the festival.

Thanks to the help of the city, organizers were able to acquire a special one-day liquor license that allows vineyards and wineries only, to sample and sell their products at such an event.

“We know that the month of October is full of events that compete for the attention of our locals, especially when it comes to football and art events,” Executive Director of the Shelby County Arts Council, Bruce Andrews said. “We wanted to bring something that would complement those events more than compete, and wine and music were a great opportunity. We’re starting out with four local winemakers, and hopefully, we’ll have more next year.

Andrews said he hopes to make the festival a scalable event, that could eventually span two days.

“We hope folks come to Columbiana and enjoy the day in our beautiful town,” Mayor David Mitchell said, after he explained the rarity of the opportunity to hold such an event.

Andrews said whether locals are interested in the wine or not, he hopes they make it out to hear the free music.

“We have some great headliners, and it’s a beautiful venue,” Andrews said. “There will be food trucks, and the gallery will be open so that folks can come in and experience the Sound and Color exhibit in the EBSCO Fine Arts Gallery.”

Four bands are scheduled to play at the festival. The Wildflowers are a Tom Petty cover band that has gained popularity across the Southeast. Rolling in the Hay is an alternative bluegrass band from Birmingham, known for the “Pickin’ On” series where the band takes popular music and turns out bluegrass covers of their work.

Early James is the stage name of artist Frederick James Mullis Jr., who is an Alabama-based singer-songwriter whose music is a blend of blues, country, folk and jazz. Lastly, Liz and the Grand Tour is a band that covers the iconic music of country and western legends like Hank Williams, George Jones, Patsy Cline and more.

The Discover Shelby Fest is a fundraiser for the Shelby County Arts Council, and this will be its inaugural year. It’s sponsored by the Shelby County Chamber of Commerce, Discover Shelby, Sweet Home Alabama Tourism and the city of Columbiana.

The net proceeds will benefit the Arts Council. To find information on the festival visit Shelbycountyartscouncil.com and click on “Happenings.”