Penny Creek Band will keep feet tapping at the annual Harvest Festival


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The Penny Creek Band is excited to play in this year's Viera Voice Harvest Festival on Oct. 20 at The Avenue Viera.

VIERA VOICE Darrell Woehler

Fans of the Penny Creek Band and the Harvest Festival will have a special treat this year just before Halloween at The Avenue Viera.

“We’ve been working on a second CD,’’ said Susan Pounds, who plays the mandolin, bass and vocals for the popular bluegrass band, which will once again play at this year’s Harvest Festival scheduled for 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 20 at The Avenue Viera.

“We’re hoping to release it in the next two months. Our guitarist Chris Paganoni sings ‘No Words to Describe.’ He’s an excellent songwriter. You’ve either got the talent to write or you don’t. Some of us have the talent, and Chris is one step above.’’

Besides Pounds and Paganoni, other members of the Penny Creek Band include Fritz Kraemer, John Apfelthaler and Trevor Klutz.

Kraemer plays the mandolin and vocals, Apfelthaler plays the banjo, guitar and vocals, and Klutz plays the fiddle and mandolin.

“I love traditional bluegrass music,’’ said Pounds, who was born in New Orleans,  raised in Alabama and has lived in Melbourne since 1986. “Our new CD will have a lot of original songs. I believe Chris wrote three of the songs on this CD. Fritz also is an excellent songwriter, and he wrote a couple of his own. I have written songs myself, but not on this CD. This was a special project for us.’’

Businesses in Viera, Suntree and Rockledge are asked to build scarecrows to encourage foot traffic along a mapped route. Participants in the stroll will log in a code they receive at participating businesses that have built a scarecrow. The pull-out maps will be published in this edition of the Viera Voice.

Stroll ballots are turned in at designated locations, and participants vote for their favorite scarecrow. The winner will receive the People’s Choice award. Participants in the stroll will be eligible for prizes.

A silent auction to purchase each of the scarecrows will be conducted during the festival. All proceeds will go to Family Promise of Brevard, which provides assistance for homeless families in Brevard.

While people at the festival stroll to bid on the scarecrows, they will be able to listen to the Penny Creek Band play such favorites as “Sunny Side of the Mountain,’’ “Lonesome Pine,’’ “Foggy Mountain Breakdown,’’ “Sweet Sally,’’ “Smoky Mountain Memories’’ and many other bluegrass songs.

“I love playing the Harvest Festival,’’ Pounds said. “I think I’ve played all of them. Jill (Blue, organizer of the Harvest Festival) really knows how to put on a Harvest Festival. It’s well organized, and it’s a great community event. We get to see a lot of our fans.’’

The popular Zucchini 500 car race also returns along with the pumpkin patch. Children will build their own race cars from aerodynamic green squash complete with axles and wheels.

The Kids Mini-Crow Building Contest will be held for the fourth time at the festival. It will have two age groups 5 to 8 years old and 9 to 14 years old. First place will earn $30, second place will get $20 and everyone else will receive ribbons.