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Hank Fan club plans festivities

With the annual Hank Williams Sr. Festival only days away, the Hank Williams International Fan Club has a lineup of activities celebrating the man and the country music he loved.

“We are going to have our usual Thursday afternoon jam session and picnic on June 10 on the club house grounds right across from the park,” said Sherri Brackin, vice-president of the HWIFC.

The picnic is set to begin at 3:30 p.m. with a variety of musicians performing for the crowd.

Things will wind down close to 7 p.m., with picnickers encouraged to stroll down the street to the historic Ga-Ana Theater. The Grand Ole Opry’s own George Hamilton IV is slated to present his tribute to Hank’s Luke the Drifter alter ego at 7:30 at the Ga-Ana.

“This is a wonderful tribute show with George sharing a lot of Hank’s gospel songs and interesting anecdotes about Hank’s life,” said Brackin.

Also scheduled to appear are Robert McLaughlin, founder of Hank Williams Tours Nashville, Jerry and Lisa Queen, Terry Smith, Frank Tuma, Jessica Strenth, Kolby Spicer and Slim Pickin Traditional Country Band.

“We want to kick off the Hank Fest with some great country music, so come on out and join us,” Brackin said.

Tickets for the Thursday night concert are $5.

On Friday at 11 a.m., the 2nd Annual Hank Williams Sr. Songwriting Contest gets underway at the Georgiana Senior Center. While a panel of judges will determine who the winner is, “folks are welcome to come and hear these musicians perform and pick their choices for the best song,” Brackin said.

The Annual Fan Club Breakfast is set for 7:30 a.m. on Saturday. Gates open to the festival at 3 p.m. Friday and at 8 a.m. Saturday. Advanced weekend tickets are available through June 10 for $30. Single-day admission prices are $15 for Friday and $25 for Saturday. Country music, arts, crafts, food and drink will be on tap; please, no lounge chairs, coolers, food, drinks or pets in the park.