Banjo Extravaganza

July 17-18, 2020

We will kick off the Banjo Extravaganza and the Unity through Art Series on Friday evening, July 17, with a special screening of the documentary “Throw Down Your Heart”, which follows world renowned banjoist Bela Fleck on an epic journey to Africa.  There he explores the origins of the banjo and creates new music with the folks he encounters along the way.  The film will show at the Heritage Pavilion from 7-8:45 pm with hot dog plates for sale at 6 pm.  Please bring your own chair and join us for an evening of music, world travel and Unity through Art.  Suggested donation for this event is $2.












On Saturday July 18, from 10 am to 4 pm, join us for our annual trek through history as we follow the evolution of the banjo from its origins as an African gourd instrument to today’s multiple and unique styles. We have an amazing group of performers this year to pick the day away.  Music starts at 11:30 am and goes until 3 pm.  Michelle Turner will be emceeing this event, in addition to performing.  She has won the banjo competition at our state sanctioned Fiddling Competition too many times to count.  Also performing this day will be David White, old time music extraordinaire, and Owen Grooms, specializing in the clawhammer banjo and will also be picking on the African gourd instrument, the ancient relative of the banjo. We will also have some junior performers joining us on stage, including Porter Nesbit, Molly Johnson, Amelia Tibalt and Arthur Bruce.  You won’t want to miss these up-and-coming musicians!  Stay tuned for the schedule.




On this special day we will also be honoring past winners of the Jean Laney Harris Folk Heritage Award, given by the South Carolina Arts Commision.  Andy Brooks, was awarded the FHA in 2019 for his contributions in Old Time Music.  He will be leading an open jam throughout the day, so please bring whatever instrument you play and pick along!  Beginners welcome.  We will also be honoring Steve McGaha, who received the award in 2003 in conjunction with his father Lloyd “Slick” McGaha, for their skill at playing the bones and blues guitar.


There will be lots of other things to see on July 18th as Hagood Mill hosts a variety of folklife and traditional-arts demonstrations. We will be running the mill, so come purchase the freshest of the fresh of our grits, cornmeal and speciality grains. There will be blacksmithing, bowl-digging, chair-caning, moonshining, broom-making, basket making, pottery, quilting, spinning, knitting, weaving, woodcarving, and metalsmithing demonstrations. We encourage visitors to ask questions of the artists, gain insight, and if you wish, spend a little money to secure a Traditional Arts treasure of your own.

One of the best parts of the Hagood Mill in the times of Covid is that we can gather here while also observing social distancing, with the majority of activities occurring outside. Please bring your own chairs, masks and personal sanitizer.  We will have a sanitation squad, ensuring that surfaces are cleaned throughout the day, and we will be limiting the number of people in the buildings at a time. 

The Centerpiece of the Hagood Mill Historic Site is the water-powered 1845 gristmill. It is one of the finest examples of nineteenth-century technology in the Upcountry and operates just as it has for the last century and a half. The mill will be running throughout the day. Hagood Mill cookbooks and a variety of other mill-related items are also available.  

We will have a quality artisan market in addition to our regular shopping in the Mill Mercantile, where we have an amazing selection of locally crafted souvenirs and personal care products, local history books, locally roasted coffee and locally grown tea.  

There promises to be lots to do and lots of fun! Admission is $5.00 per person which includes access to the Hagood Mill Historic Site as well as to the Hagood Creek Petroglyph Site. All proceeds from admission help offset the costs at Hagood Mill.  Children 12 and under are always free and there are no parking fees.

So, head on out, grab a helping of tasty food, served on site from some of the best food trucks in the area, and as always, enjoy your special day at Hagood Mill.

The Hagood Mill Historic Site is open Wednesday through Saturday from 10:00 a.m. until 4:00 p.m. year round. The Mill operates, rain or shine, the third Saturday of every month.

Both the Hagood Mill Historic Site and the Hagood Creek Petroglyph Site are located 3 miles north of Main Street Pickens off of Highway 178 W or 5 ½ miles south of Cherokee Foothills Scenic Hwy 11 just off Highway 178 E at 138 Hagood Mill Road.

For additional information please contact Hagood Mill at (864) 898-2936, visit us on Facebook at Hagood Mill Foundation or go to for a list of current programming and additional upcoming events.

Canceled due to Covid

138 Hagood Mill Rd
Pickens, SC 29671


© 2018 by DesignJOBB

Open Wednesday through Saturday, 10am-4pm, each week – all year long. 

Mill only runs on third Saturdays, rain or shine.

Special thanks to Pickens County Council for partially supporting the Storytelling Festival and the Native American Celebration.



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