The 2024 Wildlife Expo at The Mill on Etowah in Canton celebrated nature with a fantastic, cost-free experience for everyone. Since its inception in 2021, the event has grown with each passing year. The expo, North Georgia’s most extensive wildlife and outdoor event, is the perfect gathering for animal lovers and outdoor enthusiasts.  

The Sights

With plenty of parking, no entry fees, and 250,000 square feet of space at the venue, the expo was hassle-free. Most visitors began by browsing the vendors, which offered unique goods such as handmade duck calls, handwoven goods and jewelry, local art, and top-of-the-line outdoor gear. The stands also offered face painting for the kiddies, spinner bait, and plants.

The Mill on Etowah Wildlife Expo / Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng, Digital Content Specialist, City of Canton

Amy Taylor sold Expo shirts and other merch during the two-day event. (Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng/City of Canton)

Tastes and Sips

Reformation Brewery, which anchors The Mill, released a special limited-edition IPA named Wild Life in celebration of the third annual Etowah Wildlife Expo. The ale has Mosaic, Summit, and Strata hops for a floral and earthy note, delivering a fresh taste to raise a glass to Mother Nature.

This year at the Wildlife Expo, The Little Sober Bar attracted new attention. Offering a line of carefully crafted mocktails and non-alcoholic drinks, the truck served those wanting fun drinks while maintaining their sobriety, plus the fun flavors are also available for kids.

Plenty of Southern barbecue, gourmet grilled cheese from Cheez’d and Confuzed, and Japanese fried chicken from Ponko Chicken were just a few of the foods offered. For dessert, visitors could find craft donuts and homemade ice cream.

Have a Pet, Need a Pet?

Tito’s Pet Bakery, based in Canton, was at the expo. The bakery specializes in grain-free handmade treats for your furry friends, including adorable treats and birthday cakes.

Those considering adopting a pet could visit Wags and Wishes Dog Rescue. The volunteers at Wags and Wishes dedicate themselves to saving abused and neglected dogs.

The Shows

The interactive shows at the Etowah Wildlife Expo made the event memorable. A crowd favorite, the Dixie DockDogs Diving Competition, allowed local dogs to show off their retrieving skills. While some dogs look like they won’t jump two inches for a donut, others can jump eighteen feet and beyond.

The Mill on Etowah Wildlife Expo / Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng, Digital Content Specialist, City of Canton

A dock-diving dog leaps through the air. (Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng/City of Canton)

Canton resident Taylor Uliana entered her dogs into the dock diving contest and shared, “We had so much fun! I’m so thankful we have events like this to look forward to in Canton now.” 

The falconry show impressed the audience as birds soared overhead, eliciting “oohs” and “ahhs.” The reptile show featured massive slithering snakes and other less-cuddly members of the animal kingdom while the reptile handlers debunked many myths about reptiles. 

The Mill on Etowah Wildlife Expo / Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng, Digital Content Specialist, City of Canton

A group of kids hold a massive snake. (Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng/City of Canton)

The Sounds

There was live music as the sun went down on the expo on Saturday and Sunday evenings. Saturday brought the exuberant sounds of Swamptooth, a bluegrass band out of Savannah, Georgia. Mixing bluegrass and traditional Southern strings, the band’s beats had people, especially the kiddos, up and dancing. On Sunday, singer Chad Patterson took the stage with his signature spin on his musical inspirations, including Lynyrd Skynyrd, James Taylor, and other classics. 

Summing up Etowah Wildlife Expo 2024

This year’s Wildlife Expo was a tremendous success! It was a diverse and exciting event catered to people of all ages and interests. The organizers are already hard at work planning to make next year’s expo even more spectacular. 

The Mill on Etowah Wildlife Expo / Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng, Digital Content Specialist, City of Canton

The falconry show at the Expo. (Photo Credit: Jacky Cheng/City of Canton)

 

 

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