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Electric violinist, Ford, to headline Fall Fest

Special Photo
Acclaimed electric jazz violinist, Ken Ford, will headline Lovejoy's annual Fall Fest for the second year in a row on Saturday, Sept. 11, at the Lovejoy Community Center. The free festival will feature musical performances, information booths, and various vendors.

Special Photo Acclaimed electric jazz violinist, Ken Ford, will headline Lovejoy's annual Fall Fest for the second year in a row on Saturday, Sept. 11, at the Lovejoy Community Center. The free festival will feature musical performances, information booths, and various vendors.

By Joel Hall

jhall@news-daily.com

For the second year in a row, acclaimed electric violinist, Ken Ford, will headline the City of Lovejoy's annual Fall Fest, taking place two Saturdays from now.

This year, attendees will be able to enjoy a diverse array of new, musical acts, and a new venue for the event -- the city's recently renovated downtown area.

The third annual Fall Fest will take place on Saturday, Sept. 11, from noon, to 9 p.m., at the Lovejoy Community Center, located at 11622 Hastings Bridge Road in Lovejoy.

Formerly hosted at the Gerald A. Matthews Sports Complex, the free event will feature musical performances by local and regional acts, vendors selling food, T-shirts, arts and crafts, and books, and information booths hosted by county and municipal agencies, health-care organizations, and non-profit organizations, according to city officials.

Lovejoy City Manager Sebastian Jackson said the event has been moved into the downtown Lovejoy area to showcase the city's recent downtown development, such as the Lovejoy Community Center, The Mayor's Park, and the city's Open Air Market.

"Gerald Matthews Park is technically not in Lovejoy," Jackson said. "We wanted to bring people into the city. There have been so many changes in our downtown district, so we definitely want to show those off, as well. We're going to have various parking areas throughout the city, and we are going to have shuttles that will be picking people up.

"This is our flagship event ... it's our biggest event of the year," he continued. "It's really just giving back to the community and doing something to bring everybody out. [The] Ben Hill [neighborhood of Atlanta] has a Ben Hill Day ... this is the equivalent of a 'Lovejoy Day.'"

Jackson said that this year's festival will feature a more diverse sampling of performers and musical artists, representing the genres of rock, rhythm and blues, rap, Hip Hop dance, and mariachi. Acts for this year include: Atlanta-based rock group "Rusted Soul;" the soul and Rhythm and Blues party band "Darren Leslie and The Goodfellas;" youth rapper, Ivan Kelly; Hip Hop and rock band, "Da LaBoraToury;" Atlanta rapper, "4-IZE;" the "Gustavo Garcia Mariachi Band;" and a breakdancing and Hip Hop dance demonstration by the "Top Notch Dance Crew," of Lovejoy Middle School.

"Last year, we had musical groups throughout the day, but a lot of them were of the same genre," Jackson said.

Due to popular demand, according to Jackson, electric jazz violinist, Ken Ford, was brought back to headline the festival for a second year in a row. He said Ford's unique brand of violin playing would be a treat for those yet to see him perform.

"His performing is so strong," Jackson said. "A normal violin player stays on stage, plays their song, and everybody gets up and claps. He takes it to a whole other level.

"He gets off the stage, he gets into the crowd," explained Jackson. "When you watch him perform, it feels like he is performing just for you."

Ford could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Jackson said vendor space is available at the event for $50 a booth. County and municipal agencies, local non-profit organizations, and health organizations will be provided vendor space free of charge, he said.

For more information, call (770) 471-2304.