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South Carolina Jazz Festival in Cheraw
October 16, 2015 - October 18, 2015
The South Carolina Jazz Festival is a celebration of a musical art form pioneered by Cheraw’s native son, Dizzy Gillespie. The three-day festival celebrating Gillespie’s birthday will feature jazz performances, a golf tournament, a Bebop parade & Birthday party, arts and fine crafts, a Chalk competition, a book sale and kids’ art activities. The festival concludes with a Jazz Brunch and Jazz Mass on Sunday, October 18.
There will be plenty of food offerings during the weekend at local restaurants, a pancake breakfast, BBQ lunch, and a Wine & Cheese Tasting. New this year is Bebop & Bites with Dizzy’s favorite sweet potato pie, light fare and jazz.
Saturday, October 17 will offer art related activities and a full day of music at Centennial Park in downtown Cheraw. Art Alley will feature the annual Madonnari Chalk Contest and visual artists and fine craftsman. Artisans will display and sell their creations from 10:00am until 4:00pm. Included in the art exhibit will be paintings, photos, hand-blown glassware, jewelry, funky floorcloths, and more. There will be jazz related paintings by Eric McRay at Expressions Art Gallery. Visual artist Dan Nelson will be creating art on a giant canvas.
Kid’s activities run from 12:00 noon until 2:00pm, with Bebop Bingo at 12:30pm at the Art Alley area. Paperhand Puppet Intervention will display giant puppets at the Bebop parade, while Empire Strikes Brass band will lead the parade.
There are several opportunities for festival attendees to learn about Cheraw native and jazz great Dizzy Gillespie. The SCETV documentary “From the Be to the Bop” will be shown at the Theatre on the Green on Saturday. The Southern African American Heritage Center will feature Dizzy on Display and a Chat with Crystal Harris, Gillespie’s niece. The Historic Cheraw cell phone tour includes the Gillespie homesite and family church.
Most weekend events are free, with two ticketed evening performances at the Theatre on the Green featuring Ignacio Berroa Quartet & Carol Welsman Trio. All festival happenings and ticket information can be found at www.scjazzfestival.com or contact the South Carolina Jazz Festival – 843.537.8420 x 12.