Our Story

Celebrating our 28th year in 2025,  the Stringbean Memorial Bluegrass Festival honors Jackson County native and beloved Grand Ole Opry star David ‘Stringbean’ Akemon

His unique stage attire, traditional claw hammer banjo style, and entertaining stage banter endeared him to fans around the world. ’The Kentucky Wonder’ was best known for his musical comedic performances on the hallowed stage of the Grand Ole Opry beginning in the 1940’s and on the television series “Hee Haw” until his tragic death in 1973. 

With a rich history and beautiful locale at Stringbean Memorial Park, the festival has hosted the biggest stars in Bluegrass including the legendary Ralph Stanley who headlined the inaugural event in 1996.  Other celebrated Bluegrass royalty brought in by festival founder Phillip Akemon include the Queen of Bluegrass Rhonda Vincent, 14-time Grammy winner Ricky Skaggs, Hall of Famers Del McCoury and Doyle Lawson, and 28-time IBMA Award winning band Blue Highway.

The festival is hosted at Stringbean Memorial Park each Summer in June, always during the week of Stringbean's birth date of June 17.    The event has been hosted annually every year since 1996, except in 2020 when the festival was postponed until 2021 due to the pandemic. 

The Akemon family always look forward to welcoming friends old and new to Stringbean Park, and we look forward to seeing YOU there!


David 'Stringbean' Akemon

About Our Festival