LARGO — It’s a well-known fact: Fall is festival season.
Sure, daytime highs are still hitting the upper 80s in the Tampa Bay area, but it’s comfortable in the shade and when the breeze is just right. It’s the perfect time to head outdoors and take advantage of milder autumn weather. Event organizers are taking advantage of the season, too: soon, the calendar will start to fill up with outdoor festivals.
Kicking off Pinellas County’s festival season is a fundraising event that has become a cherished fall tradition. The Pinellas County Historical Society will present its 41st annual Country Jubilee on Saturday, Oct. 26, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., at Heritage Village, 11909 125th St. N., Largo. Admission is a $5 suggested donation for ages 12 and older.
Heritage Village is the county’s 21-acre living history museum. Set amidst the natural pine and palmetto landscape of the Pinewood Cultural Park complex off Walsingham Road, the property boasts some of Pinellas County's most historic buildings. Visitors can explore 33 historic attractions, including a variety of historic homes, general store, railroad depot, two schools and a church.
And during the annual Country Jubilee, there’s even more to see and do.
Country Jubilee will showcase a veritable cornucopia of crafters. With dozens of craft vendors setting up shop for the day in the village, visitors will find an array of handmade arts, crafts and seasonal decorations. Food will be available for purchase from area vendors. There will be children’s activities, such as boat-building at the McKay Creek Boat House, a Halloween costume contest and trick-or-treat from 2 to 3 p.m. Returning for this year’s Country Jubilee will be the Birds of Prey from McGough Nature Park. Farm animals and horticulture exhibits will be on hand for children of all ages, presented by Pinellas County’s Florida Farm Bureau.
Entertainment will be provided by a number of musical artists. Bluegrass, folk and many other styles of musical entertainment will be presented. Festivalgoers will enjoy the sounds of Evergreen, Chant the Trees, Charlie Bill & Two Wheel Ride, Charlie Morris, the Mungos and Rosewood Creek.
Evergreen plays Irish, English and Scottish folk songs. The three-piece band has guitar, flute, mandolin, penny whistles and vocals. Evergreen has played at a number of folk festivals and at pubs in the Tampa Bay area. All band members are originally from Liverpool, England.
Chant the Trees blends mandolin, guitar and harmonizing vocals by brothers Ryan and Kade Ballogg. Their original and traditional songs weave threads of bluegrass, folk, progressive and experimental music into a tapestry of sound and story.
Charlie Bill, a third-generation Clearwater native, has been playing professionally for over 40 years with various local bands. A multi-instrumentalist, Bill's favorite music is traditional bluegrass and his favorite instrument is the five-string banjo.
Charlie Morris was born in Florida, grew up in Tennessee and has returned to paradise. Morris is a singer, songwriter and guitarist from St. Petersburg. He plays original roots music that draws on a range of styles, from folk to bluegrass to blues. His sophisticated guitar artistry complements the stories he’s telling with his songs.
Norine Mungo writes an eclectic blend of Celtic based folk grass and western root swing. She has been performing for more than 30 years in California, Oregon, Washington and now Florida. She has authored more than 350 original songs to date, including songs about Florida.
Rosewood Creek is based in St. Petersburg. The band plays rocking Americana and roots-rock music. Most of the band's material is original, written by one of the four songwriters in the band. Rosewood Creek recently released their third CD, “Goodbye Amelia.”
Country Jubilee is organized and sponsored by the Pinellas County Historical Society. Proceeds from this event will benefit operations at Heritage Village. For event information, call 727-582-2123 or visit www.pinellascounty.org/heritage.