The sixth annual event will be Saturday and Sunday at the Rail Arts District, showcasing more than 20 bands throughout the weekend, including the headliners Pelvis Breastlies, The Joy Kills, Subsonics and Heather Luttrell.
Music was not always a big focus, according to event organizer Chris Warner. The event started out as a party to bring people to Avondale Estates, he said, and each year music grew.
“The festival has as much of a focus on the music as it does on the food and art,” Warner said.
The Saturday lineup includes: Unkle Daddy and the Kissing Cousins, Floating Coats, The Joy Kills, Bas Clas, Unsatisfied, Ghost Bikini, Subsonics, and Duet for Theramin and Lap Steel. Sunday’s musical entertainment will include: Beauregard, Frank Zeno, Five Eight, Pelvis Breastlies, Ghost Rider Car Club, High Strung String Band and Heather Luttrell.
The artists — including painters, photographers, sculptors, metal craftsmen, jewelers and more — produce eclectic, unusual work. The festival aims to showcase artists whose outlook on the world is outside the mainstream and far from cookie-cutter.
“There’s a big folk art base, and we’re including art through technology, like graphic art, computer illustration and film art,” Warner said. “It’s not your typical flowers and fruit bowls. Having a different direction is a great thing.”
Many of the musicians and artists are from the metro Atlanta area, Warner said, and about 10,000 people join to see their local artists.
The event includes a barbecue cook-off contest and a “Hot Mama” pageant as well.
The cook-off began last year and drew about a dozen chefs, Warner said.
“It’s grown each year, and everyone brings a certain page of talent,” Warner said. “The majority of folks come out super early in the morning or will be there throughout the night.”
This year’s new activity will be the pageant, inspired by the Mother’s Day event date.
“It was something that would be fun for the moms and brings the family together,” Warner said.
To register for the cook-off or pageant, visit www.artbque.com.