By: Jen Russon
As it marks its 15th anniversary, the Coral Springs Festival of the Arts promises much more than canvases and collectibles this year.
The event, spanning the St. Patrick’s Day weekend will provide residents a range of performance art – from Latin, country western, Irish and samba dancing, to a pipe and drums performance to celebrate the wearin’ o’ the green.
Instead of a ribbon-cutting, the Festival of the Arts will have a Saturday afternoon cake-cutting ceremony to celebrate yet another year.
As it has been in previous years, the festival is a culmination of efforts by a 30-member committee and hundreds of volunteers. Thanks to them, spectacular paintings, life-size sculptures, jewelry, photography, ceramics and live entertainment brighten up the community each spring.
Shirley Richards, president of the Coral Springs event, said the urban arts stage is something new – the first time, spectators will see a clothing exhibit made entirely of wallpaper. Called “Fashion Meets Art”, it’s one of many edgy and contemporary exhibits at this year’s fest.
There will also be an “Urban Art Paint-off” presented by the Coral Springs Museum of Art – a timed event where professional graffiti artists tear loose with their spray paint cans. It should prove a colorful backdrop to all the different types of musical acts planned this weekend.
Twentieth century flappers are also scheduled to take the stage, along with The Aranmore Academy of Irish Dance, in addition to flamenco artists, Motown singers, Caribbean bands, jazz and nostalgic tunes from the Big Band era.
Children are encouraged to come to the event for the puppet shows from 1 to 3 p.m. all weekend long. And of course there will be artist tents as far as the eye can see. This year’s signature artist is Susan Greely. She and other nonprofit artists and organizations are supported by the city’s art and craft guilds, Friends of Music, Southern Handcraft Society, Northwest Regional Library, Gold Coast Jazz and Hometown Reads; the latter is a new group of local authors.
Coral Springs, Parkland and Tamarac residents are encouraged to come out, wear sunscreen, and support their local artists at this free event. The performances start at 11 a.m. and go on until sundown. There is a free trolley service from the Coral Springs Center for the Arts and garage at city hall.
The outdoor event takes place on Saturday, March 16 and Sunday, March 17, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at The Walk located at 2920 North University Drive.
Jen Russon is a freelance writer and English Language Arts teacher. She has published two novels to Amazon Kindle and lives in Coral Springs with her family.