Special Use Permit Issued
More events planned for Powers' property
by Sarah Fay Campbell
Since a special use permit for a special events facility was issued by Coweta County in 2012 for the Powers’ Festival property, several events have been planned, in addition to the flagship Powers’ Festival held every Labor Day weekend.
The west Coweta property, which includes the wooded festival grounds as well as the 54-acre field usually used for parking, has been rebranded Powers Pavilion. A management group running events on the property for the non-profit Coweta Festivals Inc. hosted a “zombie village” horror attraction last Halloween as well as sunset concerts. Coming up next weekend is a new spring version of the Powers’ Festival.
There are plans for a bike rally, monthly “Sessions at Sunset” concerts, the “Pig and Swig” — a barbecue cook-off and craft beer festival — another year of Zombie Village, and possibly a Christmas event.
Powers’ Pavilion is also available for rental for various events such as company and church picnics and corporate events, said Amy Lane, one of the three partners of Powers’ Pavilion. Lane is in charge of public relations and marketing.
The special use permit, granted in April 2012, was the first permit issued under Coweta County’s special events ordinance. The ordinance allows for special-events facilities in residentially-zoned areas. Before the ordinance went into effect, there was no provision allowing special-events facilities in residential areas.
The passage of the ordinance also meant that existing events, including the Powers’ Festival and Horror Hill, had to get the permits in order to continue operating.
The permit allows for year-round events, with as many as eight “major events” per year, which can include alcohol sales.
The alcohol sales for Powers Pavilion are only allowed on the eastern side of Thomas Powers Road, in the parking field area, which is known as “Outdoor 54” — the size of the 54-acre field.
The Festival Village area where the Powers’ Festival is held “will always be family friendly, with no alcohol,” said Lane.
The Sessions at Sunset concert series began April 12 with bluegrass performances by Chris Boise and Ryan Robertson and Lard Bucket. The next concert will be May 10 and will feature Riley Yielding and Rachel and the Kris Youmans Band.
Hopes are to have the concerts monthly until it gets too cold, and to possibly have two shows a month, Lane said. Concert-goers can bring their own coolers and picnics, and there are some tables available.
The response to the first concert was “overwhelming,” Lane said. “It is just such a perfect venue for it.” As the concert series grows, “we’ll increase the notoriety of the bands we can get out there,” she said. “Right now we are focused more on the local” acoustic, bluegrass and country acts.”
Hopes are to maybe bring in some food trucks and also have table-decorating contests.
“It was really amazing,” Lane said of the inaugural concert.
An event she is particularly excited about is the Pig and Swig. It will be a Georgia Barbecue Association-sanctioned event, with a total $12,000 purse.
Lane said they are hoping to have some local community teams as well. There will be a craft beer festival and “we are hoping to get a midway.”
The next major event following the spring festival will be the Peach State Memorial Bike Rally, to be held on Memorial Day weekend.
There will be a motorcycle show, scenic rides and poker runs, bike games, treasure hunts, tattoo contests, and vendors. There will also be some limited camping available on site.
The bike rally has “taken on a life of its own,” Lane said. A BMX team sponsored by Monster Energy Drinks will be performing, as will the FX Motocross team. There will also be concerts every night. A portion of the proceeds will benefit The Wounded Warrior Project, she said.
Last fall’s Zombie Village was a success, and the event will be returning this year, Lane said.
A “Winter Wonderland” event had been planned for last Christmas but had to be cancelled because they were not able to secure an ice skating rink, Lane said, but the event should take place this year. Hopes are for it to feature ice skating, lights, and vendors selling Christmas items.