in june of each year helen hosts the helen to the atlantic hot air balloon race and festival. the balloon race begins in downtown helen and the first balloon to cross I-95 to the east wins the race. there is a hot air balloon festival following the race for a couple of days. see the attached web site for dates and festival information.
helen hosts it's annual oktoberfest celebration from mid september to the end of october each year. thousands of visitors attend this event each fall. pictured is oktoberfest hall that offers bavarian food, music, dancing, and of course german beer. a good reason to visit helen in the fall of the year. the oktoberfest hall is located on edelweissstrasse next to cool river tubing downtown.
I would not have been surprised to see someone panning for gold here as this area had a minor gold rush in the 19th Century. In fact, enough is still found to keep people interested and the dome of the Georgia Capitol Building is gilded with gold from this area (it doesn't take much). However, I don't know if the guy in the photo is looking for a particular lost item or if he is just treasure hunting. At least, I assume that what he has in his hands is a metal detector.