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REGISTRATION REQUIRED: Once you've reviewed the event details, and decided you'd like to join us, you MUST sign up at the bottom of this page.

HemlockFest 2022! Helping save our endangered Native Trees + Live Music, Adventure & optional Camping

The Basics:
Event Type:Party
Event Location: Cherokee Farms, LaFayette, GA - about 100 mi. NW of Atlanta   Party: HemlockFest 2022!  Helping save our endangered Native Trees + Live Music, Adventure & optional Camping  National Weather Service Forecast
Date(s) & Time:Fri, Nov 4 2022  12:00 pm >> Sun, Nov 6 2022 3:00 pm
Registration Opens: Mon, Oct 17 2022 9:00 am
Registration Cut Off: Thu, Nov 3 2022 5:00 pm
Event Duration:Come & go as you please from Noon Fri thru ~3PM Sunday!
Difficulty Rating:D1: Easy
Trip Leader(s):
Charlie Cottingham
Email Trip Leader(s)
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Member Cost:None

Participant Info:
Who's Invited: Members Only, 21 And Older Only
Maximum Group Size:20
Minimum Group Size:2
Number Registered So Far: 4 / 0 (To see who's signed up, log in to the Member Area)
Are Dogs Permitted: No


HEMLOCKFEST in a NUTSHELL:  For more than 10 years now dozens of us in the Atlanta Outdoor Club have enjoyed this big weekend-long outdoor music and environmental education festival with its friendly partylike atmosphere.   It's back better than ever this fall (after a 2-year Covid hiatus) and the funds it raises continue to support the survival of two important endangered native trees: the Eastern Hemlock and the American Chestnut.  The festival is expertly hosted by our hard-working friends in North GA's Dahlonega-based Lumpkin Coalition and we're proud to promote and support it as an AOC "partnership event. " We urge you to register for the options of your choice and take part as your time permits as an official attendee and/or volunteer.  Folks of all ages are welcome, including children & teenagers.
  The festival's new location this year is "Cherokee Farms," a 200+acre special-events venue with lovely forests and fields in the foothills of NW GA's historic Lookout Mountain & Pigeon Mtn.  Dozens of activities & entertainment acts are scheduled all weekend, including a continuous succession of Live Music groups performing on Fri & Sat from midday till midnight!  Also an amazing array of Dining & Refreshments opportunities at the festival.
  If you enjoy Camping you're welcome to set up your tent or hammock in one of the grassy fields or forested areas near the music stage and spend Fri and/or Sat night, with toilet facilities and hot showers providedIt's equally OK to drive up just for the day & evening (Fri, Sat, and/or Sunday) etc. as hundreds do each year.

IMPORTANT REGISTRATION DETAILS:  HemlockFest is NOT organized or managed by the AOC and no funds are handled through our Club.  Each Festival attendee or volunteer is urged to PRE-REGISTER in advance via their official Website linked here:   For all the details and options click the various topics there (including a brief Overview Video) displayed on that home page.  If you register as a Volunteer as I have, your registration fee will be greatly reduced and it's easy to sign up for  a specific time-slot "shift" via this webpage:  (Best to do this ASAP, since some of the most popular slots will likely fill up quickly!)

AOC Members, please ALSO register at the base of this article so I can include you in our Club participant roster - also email you any festival updates and share my AOC post-event archive writeup, etc.  We HemlockFest "veterans" welcome your suggestions and questions and will be glad to assist you, esp. if you're a first-timer.  Each year we AOCers like to set up our folding chairs near one another on the lawn, about 100 feet out from the center of the Festival bandstand.  This is usually a good spot to hook up with one another, esp. on Friday & Saturday afternoon and evening when the most popular bands are playing.

LIVE MUSIC GALORE! + OTHER FUN and EDUCATIONAL OPTIONS:  The festival features an amazing lineup of fine musicians and bands all weekend, performing live music on the covered outdoor stage, with plenty of seating space on the  adjoining field.  As usual we'll set up our own camp chairs in the audience area and there'll likely be dozens of festive "campfire barrels" keeping us warm at night.  Other fun things to do include guided nature walks, games for all ages and much more - all virtually free of chargeEnvironmental experts are on hand to answer all your questions about green gardening, the endangered trees,  etc.  Also there are a wide variety oexhibits, arts & crafts demonstrations, and a silent auction.  Festival merchandise and "auction items" usually include clothing, souvenir items, jewelry, pottery, sculpture, woodcarvings, furniture, Native American crafts, framed oil paintings, watercolors & nature photography - also potted hemlock saplings and herbs.

FESTIVAL  DINING and REFRESHMENTS:   As in previous years it's expected that several popular North GA restaurants will have kitchens and covered dining areas set up on site with delicious food & refreshments available all weekend for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks & beverages.   Beer and wine will also be available with proof of age.

THE FESTIVAL's worthy SAVE-the-TREES GOALS: The main goal of this delightful annual North GA mountain festival is to increase public awareness of the plight of our Eastern Hemlock trees and to facilitate methods of saving them for future generations.  Hemlock stands are among the only old growth forests in the east and are of great importance to wildlife, water quality, the economy, and our basic quality of life. Proceeds from the festival support means of combatting the destructive hemlock woolly adelgid, an Asian aphid-like insect that has already killed millions of these beautiful trees throughout the mountain regions of eastern America.  Funds raised by the festival also supports reintroduction of the almost-extinct American Chestnut into the wild.  Like the Hemlocks, millions of giant Chestnut trees once thrived throughout Appalachia and sadly were devastated in the early 1900s by a fungal "blight" that like the hemlock woolly adelgid was accidentally imported from Asia.  Decades of hard work by botanists and volunteers are producing specially bred American Chestnuts that are resistant to the blight.  The goal is to eventually repopulate Appalachia with the mature Chestnuts that are grown from the hybrid seedlings.

2012 HemlockFest Photo:

Required Items to Bring:

- Comfortable Clothing and Footwear appropriate for the weather forecast.
- Gear of your choice including a lightweight Camp Chair (for enjoying the live music), a Headlamp for getting around safely at night, and if you're camping, a Tent (or Hammock or RV) + Sleeping Bag, Pad, etc.

Recommended Items to Bring:
Use our Event Checklists to make sure you have everything you need.

- Compact Food & Drink Cooler with your favorite beverages, pre-prepared snacks, plenty of ice, etc. (This is totally optional since delicious food & refreshments can be purchased conveniently from the onsite vendors!)
- Appropriate Rain Gear if the forecast expects the possibility of wet weather.

How to Get There:
Event Directions:

DIRECTIONS to HEMLOCKFEST 2022:   GPS and users can can enter this as your destination: "Cherokee Farms, LaFayette, GA".
For a zoomable Map/ Satellite view of the venue you can also click the square blue & green "Event Location" icon near the top of this article
Step-by-Step Directions from Atlanta:
1.  From the I-75/ I-285 Interchange in NW metro Atlanta take I-75 North (in the direction of Chattanooga) about 60 miles and get off the Interstate at Exit #320.
2.  Turn Left onto GA-136 West and CAREFULLY FOLLOW  the GA-DOT's white "136" signs about 26 miles to the US-27 traffic light in LaFayette, GA. (En route GA-36 will have made several turns and becomes concurrent 
with US-27 north there in LaFayette.)
3.  At that US-27 traffic light avoid turning and instead continue straight ahead onto East Villanow Street and go about 1 mile to the Chattanooga Street junction.
4.  Turn Right onto North Chattanooga Street(which will become Mineral Springs Rd) and go about 2 miles to Walnut Row Drive on your left which is the Cherokee Farms entrance.
5.  During normal HemlockFest hours you should find festival personnel there who can direct you to the event check-in area, advise you about camping, volunteering procedures, etc.


 We re-emphasize:  All participants and volunteers should register and pay for the festival options of your choice via the official website.  Our AOC sign-up below will include you in our roster of Club attendees and facilitate our keeping in touch with one another about the event.

* We encourage all members to follow our Etiquette Guidelines while participating in AOC events.

Cancellation/Partial Attendance:   Please review the AOC cancellation policy.