That’s the recipe for the third annual Clayton Shindig.
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The festival, scheduled for Saturday on Town Square, will feature 10 bands on two stages and beer from three North Carolina breweries. Barbecue comes into the mix through the Squealin’ on the Square BBQ Cook-off, being held this year in conjunction with the Shindig.
The Clayton Chamber of Commerce and KS Bank host the cook-off and held the event on the same day as the Shindig last year. However, one ticket didn’t cover both events. That’s different this year, with the $15 admission cost covering the bands and one plate of barbecue.
“This year everything is sort of together,” said chamber president Jim Godfrey. “It’s a good partnership for the chamber.”
A portion of the proceeds from the Shindig will go to Toys for Tots. The barbecue cook-off is a fundraiser for the chamber.
The Shindig started as a cornhole tournament with bands in the Flipside parking lot off of Lombard Street. Three hundred people showed up the first year, said Shindig organizer and Clayton Rotary Club member Dave Brown.
But in its second year, the festival drew about 1,500 people, a number Brown said he hopes to match or exceed this year.
“I like to pack the place out,” he said. “That gives us more money for Toys for Tots.”
As for the bands, it’s an eclectic lineup, including headliners Big Daddy Love, Sol Driven Train and the Hackensaw Boys. Other bands playing on the main stage include Old Habits, Cutthroat Shamrock and Swift Creek.
“Almost all the bands that are there are somewhat rooted in old-timey bluegrass music,” Brown said. “But this isn’t your grandaddy’s bluegrass.”
The Appalachia rock group Big Daddy Love, based in Western North Carolina, is making its debut at the festival, while the Hackensaw Boys are one of two bands returning from last year. The string band with roots in Virginia is the closest thing to a traditional bluegrass band, Brown said.
Sol Driven Train is a band that Brown said has a diverse range of sounds, with no one song sounding like the other. The five-piece band hails from Charleston, S.C.
“One of the things we’re looking for are some collaborations,” Brown said, adding that side-stage performers might join in with other bands during the festival. “All of them can absolutely melt your face. They are all incredible bands.”
Deep River Brewing, Olde Hickory Brewery and Haw River Farmhouse Ales will be selling beer throughout the day.
“We want to bring something different to Johnston County,” Brown said. “This doesn’t happen often in Johnston County, and it certainly doesn’t happen in Clayton. It’s important to us, because that’s the reason we started it.”
In addition to the $15 ticket option, a $100 backstage pass offers access to the backstage area and meet-and-greets with the bands. The ticket also covers food and beverage and a Shindig T-shirt.
Bands start playing at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, and barbecue will be available until 5:30 p.m.
For more information, go to www.theshindigclayton.com.