Brenda Overstreet now sees why her son enjoys coming to the Arts in the Heart of Augusta festival each year.
This year he asked me to come with him, said the Augusta resident, who attended the festival for the first time. Its not what I had expected. Im really enjoying it. I have a badge that I can use all weekend, so Im going to try and come back out tomorrow.
Their favorite part of the festival is seeing the different cultures in one place, she said.
Sometimes you dont realize how diverse Augusta is, but this shows you that there are a lot of cultures here, she said. You also get a chance to try some of the foods that you would normally have to go out and look hard to find.
Ms. Overstreet is among hundreds who are attending the annual festival today in downtown Augusta.
The festival features numerous vendors showcasing their artwork; booths providing information about local museums and non-profit groups; and a variety of entertainment on four stages.
Attendees can also experience authentic food from countries such as Greece, Germany, Caribbean Islands, Ireland and Brazil.
Robbi Harrison has attended the festival for many years.
We come out to see the artwork, which is always impressive, and sometimes to eat, he said. Its a great place to come out and enjoy different cultures and the arts.
There is still time to attend the Arts in the Heart of Augusta festival which continues through tomorrow.
Other featured acts today include The Augusta Chronicle Singer-Songwriter Competition and the Shawn Mullins and Patrick Blanchard concert.
Here's today's and Sunday's schedule of events at the Augusta Common, 800 block between Broad and Reynolds streets. The cost is $7 at gate.
11 a.m.: Savannah River String Band
Noon: Chinese Dancers
1 p.m.: Alchemy Middle Eastern Dance Troupe (and students)
1:30 p.m.: The Dance Shoppe
2 p.m.: Augusta West Performing Company
2:30 p.m.: DRUM from Africa to Georgia
3 p.m.: Bellyrok
5 p.m.: The Augusta Chronicle Singer-Songwriter Competition
9 p.m.: Shawn Mullins and Patrick Blanchard
Noon: Augusta State University Conservatory Jazz Band
12:30 p.m.: Greek Dancers
1 p.m.: Nigeria cultural performances
1:30 p.m.: ABATSU and AJADACO dance
2:30 p.m.: Augusta Chorale
3:30 p.m.: Philippine Americans
4 p.m.: Foot Loose and Fancy Free Cloggers
4:30 p.m.: Columbia County Civic Orchestra
5:30 p.m.: Mangelly Belly Dancers
6 p.m.: Closing ceremonies
11:30 a.m.: Denise Cheeks School of Music
12:15 p.m.: Bethel Community Apostolic Church Choir
1 p.m.: James Buckland
2:15 p.m.: David Owen
3 p.m.: Patrick Reagan
3:45 p.m.: J.J. Walker
4:30 p.m.: Eddie McCoy
5:15 p.m.: Karen Gordon and Rejoice
6:15 p.m.: Doug and the Henry's
7 p.m.: Double D
8 p.m.: Mello D
Noon: John S. Davidson Fine Arts Magnet School
2 p.m.: Double Ease
3 p.m.: Ryan Gay
4 p.m.: Mood Swings
5 p.m.: Vellotones
6 p.m.: Dew Hickies
11 a.m.: Company of Job
12:15 p.m.: Musical Theater Workshops
1:15 p.m.: CSRA Pee Wee Cheerleaders
1:30 p.m.: Augusta Youth School of Dance
2:30 p.m.: German Friendship Dancers
3 p.m.: Suzuki Violins
4 p.m.: Speed T and Lil Diamond
4:30 p.m.: Hayiya Dance Theatre
5 p.m.: Eastern Star Dance Theatre
6 p.m.: Fierce Fusion Belly Dance
6:30 p.m.: Envey Belly Dance Company
7 p.m.: Viva Panama, Puerto Rico, and Mexico, La Explosion Secreta!
8 p.m.: Kane and Co. Dance Productions
8:30 p.m.: Pride of Ireland Irish Dancers
Noon: Celtic Rhythm Irish Dancers
1 p.m.: Rhythm & Class Cloggers
2 p.m.: Cutno Dance Center
3 p.m.: Pulse Dance Center
3:30 p.m.: Edelweiss Dancers
4 p.m.: Youssef the Storyteller Vagabond Tales
4:45 p.m.: Savannah Winds
2:30 p.m.: Poetry Matters: Readings from the winners of the annual Poetry Month Tribute
3:45 p.m.: Book Swap
4 p.m.: Quality Poets Society's Open Microphone showcase, with lady VEE DaPoet and Maiysha "TruthSeeker" Chairborne
1 p.m.: How to Establish Relationships with Bookstores and Libraries
Also appearing: Tripp Bowden, Donna Brown, Joni Berry, Horace Mungin, Cowboy Mike Searles, Mike Ryan and Doug Joiner