“The Bright Spot of Summer”
Now in its 22nd year, this year’s festival will take place on the welcoming, wooded St. John Medical Center campus the weekend of July 10-12.
Festival Director Linda Whelan says the 2015 Festival of the Arts will deliver a refreshed and renewed atmosphere. Theme of this year’s show is “The Bright Spot of Summer.”
As in year’s past, artists from throughout the country will gather in Westlake to proudly display their array of arts and crafts. “We will be welcoming 70 first-time event exhibitors to the roster of 200-plus craftsmen and artisans overall,” said Linda.
The VIP Casino Night on Friday will bring some added twists. Linda wants visitors to know that the Friday night kick-off will have something for everyone, including ‘Food Feast Friday.’ Food trucks will offer a wide variety of new and popular eats with a focus on healthy foods. A barbeque area will offer fresh-grilled chicken and other delectables.
The Wine & Beer Garden will also be open to one and all. “Twist” will provide music with a Motown vibe on Friday. Enjoy Steel Drum Trio Saturday afternoon and Ed Majeski Band/Big Band in the evening. Sunday will be oldies but goodies day with The Belairs. Visitors are welcome to stop by all weekend to enjoy some tunes, sip wine and enjoy a plate of cheese.
The Children’s area will have added touches, too. New this year is a photo booth area for the entire family. Artists will be on hand to work with kids on art basics. There will also be spin art, face-painting, henna tattoos and a duck pond.
A Boutique Art tent will give newer vendors a place to highlight distinctive works. This will be a great chance to meet up and coming artists with new products. Ursuline College will be there with an art therapy display manned by students learning the art program. Recent grads of the Cleveland Institute of Art will also be there.
An Exhibitor Tent will host a performing arts stage featuring a new talent each hour that will include music, dance and specialty acts.
You also won’t want to miss the Fashion Show with models at noon on Saturday. Vendors with wearable goods ranging from hats, clothes, jewelry and even doll and dog clothes will be on the runway.
Art for Animals will be dedicated to supporting animals in need of a loving home. Proceeds from the vendors and raffle prizes will go to Adoption Services. “Pet-centric items will be offered in addition to pet-adoption services,” says Whelan.
Health Screenings and the traditional Sunday Mass will also be part of the weekend scene.
Attendance for 2014’s Festival of the Arts exceeded 15,000 people, with activities for young and old alike. It is a three- day event with something for everyone.
Festival of the Arts is open to the public, free of charge. Attendees are encouraged to donate non-perishable food items for local hunger centers. In 2014, more than 4,500 pounds of food were collected to help those in need through the SJMC Community Outreach program. Stop by the Second Harvest Food truck again this year with your donation.
Parking will also be free of charge (but donations are welcome) on the SJMC grounds, and also available with shuttle service from Church on the Rise across the street on Crocker Road.
“What makes the Festival of the Arts so unique is the variety of artisans that attend and showcase their works of arts,” says Patrick Garmone, director of marketing for St. John Medical Center. “We are fortunate to have some of the finest artists in the country attend the event, and many create their artwork during the weekend, allowing festival-goers to observe the creative process.
“Since its inception, the festival has served as a ‘thank you’ to the community for its ongoing support. That is why we do not charge an admission fee,” Garmone says. “We also want residents to enjoy our beautiful campus, which boasts 68 acres. It makes for an idyllic setting.”
Click below to see Full Festival Tab