The Arts Alive celebration blooms with creativity this spring on March 21st!
Produced by The Arts, Hancock County, the festival is actually comprised of several events taking place simultaneously and encompasses the visual, literary, musical, and culinary arts.
The Artists Showcase is the main focus of the event, with dozens of artists showing and selling their work at “host” businesses in Old Town. Free demonstrations and talks by the artists about their techniques take place through the day.
The showcase is open to artists nationwide for a nominal fee ($25 for members of The Arts, Hancock County, $50 for non-members, which includes a year’s membership in The Arts). Artists are paired with host businesses for the day and are featured on the event’s website and in the event program. Deadline for artists to register is March 4th. Applications are available at www.ArtsAliveGulfCoast.com.
But there’s a competitive side to this new ArtsAlive!
“Think of it as sort of an ‘American Idol’ for the arts,” says The Arts president Cynthia Mahner, smiling. “Our new motto is ‘Celebrating Art, Engaging Communities and Enriching Lives!’ So we’re staging events that will engage entire families and get them excited about creative endeavors of all kinds. People can come out and cheer on their favorite artist or student.”
Several different competitions are offering nearly $3,000 in cash prizes for top contestants on the day of the event. There will be a “Flash Fiction” writer’s contest which is open to all ages. Writers are given just three hours to write a story about a specific topic, announced that morning. There’s also a “Southern Sweets” culinary competition, and a singer-songwriter competition that has already attracted entries from all over our area.
In addition, a juried art show and high school student art show - both offering generous cash prizes - will be on display. In the afternoon, a fun theatre tableau will take place on the courthouse steps, with actors bringing to life the characters from a famous painting.
Mahner says the new ArtsAlive has been enthusiastically embraced by both artists and Old Town merchants. “The response has exceeded our expectations again this year and that’s always a great place to be.”
For complete ArtsAlive! information, click here.