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Finster Fest Homecoming to Paradise Garden Welcomes Folk Artists and Vendors

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Annual Folk Art Festival Offers Live Music and Art Installations

Summerville, Ga. – Finster Fest, the annual festival honoring the life and legacy of Summerville’s famous folk artist Howard Finster, will return to its flagship location at Paradise Garden May 28-29.

finster fest


Previously, the fest was held at Dowdy Park with shuttles to Paradise Garden for tours only. The move will give the more than over 1,000 projected attendees the opportunity to explore the full garden while streamlining the experience for all, including vendors and volunteers.  


The fest has consistently drawn folk artists and fans from across the country since its inception in May of 1991. The homecoming celebration includes an expanded roster of more than 50 well-known folk artists such as Bebo, Peter Loose, C.M Laster and Grace Laster, and Missionary Mary Proctor.


In addition to vendors, attendees can also enjoy live music, crafts and food with the $5 admission fee, which benefits the ongoing work of Howard Finster Paradise Garden Foundation. After the fest, attendees can move to downtown Summerville to enjoy a free outdoor concert at 7p.m.


“Moving the fest back to Paradise Garden helps to highlight all of the restoration work we’ve accomplished, while still reminding people we have several big projects that will benefit from this event,” Jordan Poole, Executive Director of Howard Finster’s Paradise Garden said.


Howard Finster, one of America’s most widely known folk artists, began creating what would become Paradise Garden in 1961 with found recycled materials to celebrate what he called the “intentions of mankind.” He produced more than 46,991 pieces of art before his death in 2001. His work has been featured in numerous museums including the High Museum of Art in Atlanta, the Baltimore at the American Visionary Art Museum and on album covers for R.E.M. and Talking Heads.


For more information on the event and participating artists, visit


WHAT: Finster Fest


WHEN: Saturday, May 28

10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Sunday, May 29

11 a.m. – 5 p.m.


COST: $5.00


WHERE: Paradise Garden

200 N Lewis St, Summerville, Georgia 30747


ARTIST ATTENDEES: Bebo, Peter Loose, C.M Laster and Grace Laster, Whitney Nave Jones, Missionary Mary Proctor and more.



The Paradise Garden Foundation was founded in 2012 with the mission to preserve, maintain and showcase Rev. Howard Finster’s visionary artistic site, Paradise Garden. The Foundation’s primary goal is to serve as a social, cultural, educational and artistic nexus for the benefit of Chattooga County and the Northwest Georgia region while also continuing to serve Finster’s Mission to spread the message and vision for his Garden to People Worldwide. Paradise Garden Foundation fosters regional economic development through tourism, public service and creative enterprise, each of which adheres to Finster’s vision for his garden.


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