The Jacksonville Area Arts Council is busy planning its first fall festival as it works to promote arts in the community.
A festival is planned for 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 27 at the Norman Activity Center, 526 East Commerce St. It is free for attendees.
Nancy Washburn, interim president and treasurer for the council, said the group is renting out booths to local artists so they can come sell their work. That can include paintings as well as other handcrafted pieces such as jewelry and pottery.
Arts council members also are bringing in music groups, and demonstrations are planned by certain individuals, Ms. Washburn said. As of Tuesday, performers included Tyler native Patrick James, Eric Moseley and Withrow Cooley.
“We kind of looked at it as a fundraiser. Our one mission is to help promote the arts, and we feel like we'll be doing that by having artists out with the things that they make,” she said.
Ms. Washburn also noted that people could use the opportunity to shop for Christmas.
“This is the first one so (the goal is) to be successful, to have a good crowd there, and I'm sure artists would like to sell their items,” she said.
The council formed a couple years ago with the mission to “support, promote and encourage all of the arts including, but not limited to, visual performing, musical, literary, environmental, and other allied arts in the community.”
“We want to expose people to the arts and hopefully as we progress, as we grow we'll be able to do different events. The big dream of some is to have an art gallery where we would have local people's art on display,” she said.
“I think the average person would have no idea the (amount of talent) in this area.”
Mike Withrow, press officer for the festival, said the council is excited about getting artists together whether its painters or craftsmen.
“We want to be part of that community. We mainly want to let it be known we're soliciting a call to artists and also sponsorships,” he said.
For more information on the festival or council, visit www.jacksonvilleareaartscouncil.org or email Liz Halpain at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anyone with questions about advertising and sponsorships may call Deon Williams at 903-521-9517.