Peel back layers of fun with concerts, kids’ activities, chef competitions and more
VIDALIA, GEORGIA – MARCH 2016 – VIDALIA, GEORGIA – MARCH 2016 – A four-day tribute to a root vegetable might be a ballyhoo anywhere else, but for anyone within driving distance of Vidalia, Georgia, located three hours southeast of Atlanta off I-16 and midway between Macon and Savannah, the 39th annual Vidalia Onion Festival is a highly-anticipated, gotta-get-there, can’t-miss-it celebration complete with concerts, rides, three Vidalia Onion cooking events, including the Vidalia Onion Recipe Contest and Tasting event, a concert featuring Big and Rich and more. April 21-24 pack up any notions this event is corny (because that’s a different festival altogether!) and check out why Georgia’s Official State Vegetable, the internationally known Vidalia® Onion, is deserving of its place on the pedestal.
Ode to Georgia’s Official State Vegetable
Grammy nominated, triple-platinum country music duo, Big & Rich will headline the 39th Annual Vidalia Onion Festival at the Vidalia Regional Airport, Saturday, April 23. Their five albums have all reached the Top 10 on U.S. country charts and have produced a total of 11 Top 40 hits. Their latest single “Lovin’ Lately” (featuring Tim McGraw) was released in January 2016 on country radio and has experienced the most successful debut the duo has ever had. Cowboy Troy will also join Big & Rich on stage.
Opening up for Big and Rich, is another national act with a #1 country music hit, A Thousand Horses. Their single “Smoke,” released last year, quickly shot to the #1 spot. This song had the highest debut by any new act on the Country Aircheck radio chart. The band’s sound has been compared to the likes of Lynyrd Skynyrd, the Allman Brothers and the Black Crowes.
Gates open at 2 p.m. Concert Tickets available online at www.VidaliaOnionFestival.com or at https://www.freshtix.com/events/vidalia-onion-festival-big-and-rich. $10 advance tickets are refundable (minus the process fee) if the event is cancelled due to inclement weather. $30 VIP tickets, sold online, will include access to the front stage VIP area, special VIP parking and VIP restrooms. VIP tickets must be purchased in advance; they are not available at the gate. General Admission at the gate is $15.
More festival fun
Featured on The Food Network, recognized as one of the “Five Don’t-Miss Festivals Across the U.S.” by MSNBC and a long-time Southeast Tourism Society Top 20 Event, kick off the top-rated, four-day Vidalia Onion Festival with ample opportunities to experience the famous vegetable. Participate or watch the “Onion Eating Contest” at the Arts & Crafts pavilion; enjoy it battered and fried at the downtown information booth; experience a true 1880s Cowboy Cattle Drive Camp at the 3rd annual Chuckwagon Cook-off — lunch plates are available for sale in advance; or, visit the Vidalia Onion Recipe Contest and Tasting in the Vidalia Community Center.
Did you know?
Vidalia Onions are the pioneer of sweet onions and Georgia’s official State Vegetable. Grown only in the mild climate and unique soil surrounding Vidalia, they’re loved by chefs and home cooks throughout the world. Learn more at the Vidalia Onion Museum, located at 100 Sweet Onion Drive in Vidalia. Because Vidalia Onions are sweetly unique, farmers united and sought legal protection of their crop and its name. Federal Marketing Order No. 955 was established in 1989 to stipulate how and where the crop can be grown and sold.
For more details, including a complete outline of each day’s festivities, visit. www.VidaliaOnionFestival.com.
New in Vidalia!
Just as the sweet onions were making their appearance, so did Vidalia’s newest landmark…the Vidalia Onion Fountain located in Vidalia City Park behind City Hall. Created entirely by local artisans, the fountain was dedicated at the 2015 Onion Festival and promises to be a hub at the center of the city and one of the “sweetest” things to come out of Vidalia since the onion.
The stainless steel structure in the center of the fountain is a six-foot by six-foot onion. The onion, created by Ruth Williams English, took just six weeks to perfect from discussion to reality. A paper model, a miniature steel onion…and Mrs. English was on her way to creating a Vidalia masterpiece.
The new steel sculpture rests in a 20-foot pool designed by Greg Goff, owner of GG’s Landscaping. The large basin includes 10 individual pumps that operate water features within and surrounding the sculpture. At night, visitors can be entertained with the multi-colored lights and water that dance to the sounds of music playing in the park. The fountain is surrounded by Mega Olde Towne natural stone pavers that create a European look on a large scale, contoured to accent the landscaped green space while creating a focal point around the fountain.
The stage and fountain at City Park are located on the corner of US 280 W and Durden Street, behind Vidalia City Hall.
If you go
Make for a memorable weekend — stay in one of these choice hotels:
AmericInn – 912-537-2728
Days Inn – 912-538-8100
Hampton Inn – 912-526-0235
Quality Inn – 912-537-9000