Drive-By Truckers and the Grammy-winning Steep Canyon Rangers will headline the musical portion of the third annual Southern Grown Festival, set for Sept. 1 to 3 at the Sea Island resort on St. Simons Island.

In addition to music, the festival celebrates the region's food. Some of the South's best-known chefs and mixologists will be on hand to cook, mix drinks and to share their knowledge with festival goers.

"Guests of Sea Island can expect a weekend unlike any other," says Scott Steilen, president and CEO of Sea Island. "We have created an experience that truly captures the spirit of the South through all senses. The imaginative, thoughtful touches are what make the difference and set Southern Grown apart from other great festivals."

In business since 1928, Sea Island is the only resort in the world to have received four Forbes Five-Star awards for nine consecutive years. It also is the only U.S. resort to host a G-8 Summit of world leaders.

The festivities will start Friday with Garden & Gun's kick-off dinner with James Beard Award-winner Mike Lata, a self-taught chef from FIG Restaurant in Charleston.

After the dinner, the Steep Canyon Rangers will perform on Rainbow Island, a casual marsh-front venue overlooking the Black Banks River.

"Southern Grown serves to celebrate the spirit of the South through all senses with the best chefs, mixologists, musical talent, and overall entertainment throughout the weekend," says publicist Jana Berkowitz of NJF Media.

On Saturday morning, the Southern Grown Marketplace and Southeastern Wildlife Exposition will open. It will feature a demonstration of wildlife and nature through fine art, conservation seminars, sporting presentations and food and drink.

Numerous artists and exhibitors will be on site, and there will be demonstrations and lectures, such as mixology lessons with award-winning bartenders.

Learn falconry from experts with Broadfield, Sea Island's 5,800-acre sporting club and lodge. There also will be a bird dog training exhibition.

That evening, guests can enjoy the oceanside Hopkins' Heritage Dinner. The dinner is prepared by Atlanta Chef Linton Hopkins and his son, and draws upon their rich Southern roots.

That night, the Drive-By Truckers will perform. Guests can dine on selections from Southern Soul, a barbecue restaurant.

VIP ticket holders will receive light bites by Chef Chris Dickerson from Jacksonville's Corner Taco. After the concert, guests can indulge in the Little Less Conversation After Glow Party, with food and music by the King of Rock 'n' Roll.

"Take a stroll and peruse dozens of unique Southern artisans' and purveyors' booths. Don't miss the demos," Berkowitz says. "From the food world comes well-renowned Chef Linton Hopkins, who will captivate the culinary-inclined folks. Spirits abound with mixology demos from award-winning bartenders."

A farewell brunch will be Sunday at Tavola, a rustic Italian restaurant. Guests will dine at a traditional Southern feast, with biscuits and gravy, donuts and much more.


What: Southern Grown Festival

When: Sept. 1-3

Where: Sea Island on St. Simons Island

Cost: From $65 for general admission concert tickets to $495 for all-access pass for one

Info:, 800-SEA-ISLAND


Sept. 1

2-7 p.m.: Southern Grown Hospitality Suite

Location: The Cloister Library

Open to SoGro All Access Pass-holders only

7-11 p.m.: Garden & Gun Kick-off Dinner and a Show

Location: Rainbow Island

Enjoy Charleston Chef Mike Lata's cuisine and the music of Grammy Award-winning Steep Canyon Rangers from Asheville, N.C.

Cost: $175 (includes all libations)

Sept. 2

10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Southern Grown Hospitality Suite

Location: The Cloister Library

Open to SoGro All Access Pass-holders only

10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Southern Grown Marketplace

Location: Mizner Ballroom at The Cloister

Open to all Sea Island Resort Guests and Sea Island Club members

5:30-7:30 p.m.: Oceanside Hopkins' Heritage Dinner

Location: Sea Island Beach Club

Enjoy a meal designed by heritage and cooked by father and son, Linton and Linton. Beau + Luci, sisters from the swamplands of Southern Georgia, will offer hypnotizing harmonies and bluesy melodies.

Cost: $70

8-11 p.m.: Southern Grown Concert

Location: Rainbow Island

Athens-based Drive-By Truckers perform with opening act The Whiskey Gentry. The VIP section is catered to by Chef Chris Dickerson of Corner Taco from Jacksonville, Florida, while the local favorite, Southern Soul, takes over the Cook House.

Cost: $125 VIP sold out, $65 general admission

11 p.m. to 1 a.m.: A Little Less Conversation After Glow Party

Location: The Cloister Clubroom

Inspired by the life of Elvis, this party is a little bit country, a little bit Las Vegas and a lot of rock 'n' roll. A late night fueled by the music and food of The King. Elvis will be in the building with a "Tribute to Elvis" featuring Stephen Freeman.

Open to SoGro All Access Pass-holders only

Sept. 3

10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Southeastern Wildlife Exposition

Location: Mizner Ballroom at The Cloister

Celebrate wildlife and nature through fine art, education, and sport.

Open to all Sea Island Resort guests and Sea Island Club members

11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Southern Grown Sunday Brunch

Location: Tavola at The Cloister

Gather for a traditional Southern Brunch of biscuits and gravy, house-made hash browns and bacon, among other Sunday staples. Certified Burgers & Beverage provides freshly made donuts. Wind down with the sounds of Caleb Caudle, a singer-songwriter out of Winston-Salem, N.C.

Cost: $60