Welcome to Jackson-Butts County, Georgia and my Tourism Blog! If you’ve reached this site, then you’re interested in learning more about our little part of Central Georgia and all the cool things there are to see and do here! This site is completely dedicated to publishing articles and updates about tourism and exploring the things to see and do in Butts County, including places to see and a wide variety of events that go on throughout the year.
Butts County, founded in 1825, is situated in the heart of Georgia, just 35 minutes north of Macon and 45 minutes south of Atlanta. Being that close to two of Georgia’s largest cities puts us within a short drive of most anything one could want to do, but that means we are just as close for people who want to get out of the city and spend the day in some of the most beautiful parts of the state.
Let’s start with places…there’s Jackson, our largest city, county seat and home to our beautiful downtown square, historic buildings, shopping, restaurants and more. Flovilla, just a few miles south of Jackson is a thriving little town of just over 600, full of beautiful, historic homes, churches and parks. Jenkinsburg, a few miles north of Jackson, is our smallest town but as the gateway to Butts County, it’s home to over forty active businesses and growing each year.
The County and each of our three Cities work closely together with many others to maximize our offerings and showcase our community. You’ll find information about each of these cities, as well as the unincorporated town of Indian Springs, home of the oldest state park in the nation. You’ll also find a calendar of events for upcoming things going on here, either on the right side of the page or down at the bottom. Check back often, or follow me on Twitter (@JMichaelBrewer) and to find out what we’ve got going on around here.
Within our 185 square miles of Georgia, we have a LOT of things for visitors to see and do, and all of them are “Family Friendly”. Many include the opportunity to get outdoors and enjoy the beautiful, natural environment that we are so proud of. With the temperate weather in the south, the outdoors is nearly a year-round attraction, drawing visitors to our parks, lake, rivers and natural beauty. Some of our offerings include:
- Indian Springs State Park, the oldest state park in the United States, offering camping, hiking, creek wading, mini-golf, boating, historical sites, cabin rentals, and large group activity venues. A future 500-capacity Conference Center is scheduled to break ground in the coming months for completion in 2017. The park and adjacent Village at Indian Springs have become a very popular destination for weddings.
- The Indian Springs Hotel, site of the signing of the Creek Indian Nation Treaties of Indian Springs in 1821 & 1825. The hotel is now a museum and cultural center, hosting the annual Native American Festival each fall, as well as an annual Artifact Day.
- The Indian Springs Holiness Campground, one of the largest and oldest in Georgia, annually draws several thousand visitors from all over the southeastern U.S. to its yearly 10-day camp meeting, held in the summertime.
- The Village at Indian Springs, a private investment restoration of 19th and early 20th century homes, botanical gardens, businesses, luxury cottages and related attractions for tourists, including antique and specialty stores. The Village is located adjacent to Indian Springs State Park and is a favorite destination for those wanting a relaxing weekend away. Some of its key events include wine tasting, outdoor music festivals, art shows and antique shows.
- Dauset Trails Nature Center, owned and operated by a non-profit charitable foundation as an animal and nature preserve, encompasses several hundred acres, complete with mountain bike and walking trails, rare wildlife, ponds and lakes, educational exhibits and more.
- Jackson Lake, a 4,750 acre manmade lake with 135 shoreline miles, offering boating, water skiing, swimming and many other amenities. The lake is managed by Georgia Power and is a popular weekend destination during the warm months of the year.
- The Ocmulgee River, which forms at the mouth of Jackson Lake Dam and winds its way through many miles of unspoiled wilderness all the way to Macon, allows for canoeing, kayaking, tubing, rafting and camping. There are even some rapids along the way!
- High Falls State Park, parts of which are in Butts County, brings a number of visitors to the County. The proximity of High Falls, Dauset Trails and Indian Springs can easily provide a day or two of “park hopping” trips, allowing travelers to visit multiple places within a short distance of each other.
- The Robert Grier Historic Cemetery, burial site of Robert Grier, the creator of Grier’s Farmer’s Almanac, which is still in publication today.
- National Historic Registry Sites, such as the County Courthouse, the Carmichael House and the aforementioned Indian Springs Hotel.
- Noted restaurants that draw people from across the state such as Buckner’s, home to some of the south’s best fried chicken, and Fresh Air Barbecue, the oldest barbecue restaurant in Georgia still in its original site. Fresh Air is now featured on the Georgia Barbecue Trail as of 2016.
- Excellent recreational sports complexes run by the County, including recently renovated gymnasium facilities, tennis courts, baseball and softball fields, track and football fields and a new soccer complex. These regularly attract tournaments and draw visitors to the area to enjoy athletic competitions and events.
- Camera Ready filming locations, including downtown Jackson, which is now the TV hometown in “Stranger Things”, a new hit series by Netflix. Other venues which have been featured in film and television include the Carmichael House (featured in “The Originals”) and Jackson Lake (featured in the movie “Endless Love”).
- An active, modern and well-equipped Public Library includes a special area of rare and historical books about Georgia and the South, perfect for researchers.
- Active Community Civic Organizations that offer a variety of entertainment events throughout the year, including the Jackson Alive Fall Festival, Halloween on Second Street, Christmas in the City, the Native American Festival, Artifact Day at Indian Springs, Jenkinsburg Founders Day Festival, Flovilla Day Festival, Christmas in the Village, the Bluebirds and Bluegrass festival and much more.
- An active Arts Council that provides a number of cultural and art events through the year.
- ALL conveniently located just minutes off of Interstate I-75, with State Highway access to all cities.
When you look at this list, you’ll see we really are closer to everywhere than anywhere…the big cities and all they offer, less than an hour away, and all that we offer here, just a short drive from the big cities. We’ll be adding articles and venues throughout this site in the months ahead. Come down and visit Jackson and Butts County, as well as Flovilla, Jenkinsburg, Indian Springs, Jackson Lake and all the other things to see and do here. Visit us, enjoy our green spaces and we think you’ll see why Butts County is truly Georgia’s Outdoor Capitol!
J. Michael Brewer