BRANDON — At first glance, Brandon's Momentum Festival sounds like some crazy concoction you would get from the guys at the Florida State Fair who serve fried butter and giant turkey legs.
The festival's creator, Dave Loebig, bills this annual series of fundraising events as music, arts and entertainment — served fried on a stick.
"We just want to have fun with it and not be all hoity-toity," Loebig said.
An outgrowth of the city's first Brandon Idol competition, the Momentum Festival continues to evolve, grow and change. This year, festivities include a home brewing event to go along with American Idol-like events for teens and adults.
The Mo Fest Brew Fest kicks off the celebration on Sunday from noon to 3 at Bootleggers Beer and Wine Home Brewing, 650 Oakfield Drive. The event includes beer-brewing demonstrations, beer and wine tastings (for a donation) and Jana Broder's Drum Magic drum circle. Proceeds will go to Rotary's Camp Florida and the Emergency Care and Help Organization.
Loebig met the Bootleggers owners and immediately began brainstorming about adding them to the list of events.
"I do home brewing myself, and there are people who treat it very much like an art," said Loebig, who added he would like to develop the event into a regional or statewide competition for folks who brew their own beer.
The festival continues Thursday with the Night of Original Music at Tres Amigos, 2025 W Brandon Blvd. The event celebrates songwriters who perform original tunes. The program also will feature instrumentalists and singers with their own music on CDs.
The big events come Saturday at the Elks Club, 800 Centennial Lodge Drive. Brandon Idol-Teen begins at 1 p.m., and Loebig said the addition of auditions will raise the bar on what already has developed into an impressive showcase. Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for kids under 18.
"Janet Frenkel is running the teen show and she has a really impressive resume in training and performing," Loebig said. "I've seen a number of her productions. She always gets the best out of her performers."
Brandon Idol-Adult starts at the Elks Club at 7 p.m. Loebig said the event promises to be a mix of "refined performers who have studied music" and karaoke singers who just happen to be great.
Tickets are $25 if you buy today, $30 on Saturday.
Overall, Loebig said he aims to continue to make the event bigger and better every year. He hopes to be able to offer prize money for next year's Idol events.
For more information, visit momentumfestival.com.
Ernest Hooper can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or (813) 226-3406.