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Pear, wine festival coming this weekend

Weekend festival centered at Hood River Expo Center.

Plan on attending the Hood River Pear and Wine Festival, Friday-Sunday, May 17-19, at the Hood River Expo Center.

Major regional musical talent will add to the abundance and ambience. Terry Robb, named "Best Acoustic Guitarist" every year since 1992 by Portland's Cascade Blues Association, opens the musical portion of the festival on Friday, the first of 12 performers or groups scheduled during the event. Other performers include Chuck Haynie, Mike Robarge, No Depression, Gypsy Ale, Alibi, the Sugar Daddies, Geno Michaels, Sweet Adelines, Django's Cadillac, and Moe Dixon.

Gorge bluegrass favorites Chuck Haynie and Mike Robarge, and No Depression, with its eclectic mix of alternative country music with a bluegrass flair, complete the entertainment schedule on Friday.

Acoustic guitarists, swing music, jazz and more are part of the festival's Saturday musical lineup. Gypsy Ale's acoustical sounds open the afternoon's entertainment, followed by Alibi, with vibrant rock and rhythm performed by area musicians Kenny Abercrombie, Diane Beibbrant, Bill Mohr and Pat Allegre. The Sugar Daddies are up next, with a swing sound guaranteed to get the crowd moving. The Gino Michaels Power Trio kicks off the evening entertainment with a jazz set, before being joined by Robbie Laws, lauded as one of the Northwest's top performers.

The Cascade Blues Association has named Laws "Best Electric Guitarist" six consecutive years, and his skill in a variety of guitar styles keeps him on play lists at a range of regional radio stations.

Sunday's music begins with a performance by the Sweet Adelines, an outstanding female choral group with a big local following. Django's Cadillac (an up-tempo version of popular local band Cascade Trio) serves up a lively mix of gypsy jazz and western swing. Then the festival's music lineup concludes with perennial favorite Moe Dixon. a nationally recognized singer, songwriter and guitarist, Dixon is a peerless crowd-pleaser whenever he plays.

Admission to the 2002 Pear and Wine Festival is $5 per person, or $10 for a three-day pass. Children 10 and younger are admitted free. There is a $2 per-car parking fee.


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