On Friday, downtown Arlington will become home to the city’s newest art and music festival, South Street Art Festival. Building on the already significant reputation of the springtime Art on the Greene Festival, this event will be presented by Moya Art Events and Downtown Arlington Management Corp.Founded by local artist Steve Moya, the three-day South Street Art Festival will spread over two blocks along South Street between Mesquite and East streets and feature over 75 artists in nearly a dozen media and a host of bands performing all three days.What better location for a brand-new festival than right in the heart of Arlington’s vibrant downtown scene, a block away from the Levitt Pavilion and adjacent to the beautiful College Park area at UTA? Moya says the South Street Art Festival will focus on the same high-quality work seen at his Art on the Greene festival held at Richard Greene Linear Park the past two years. “Each artist has gone through a juried application process, and pieces can range from $40 to $10,000,” said Moya.The media include: ceramics, drawing, fiber, glass, jewelry, metal, mixed media, painting, photography, sculpture and wood.While attendees browse the art, continuous music on the Coors Light Stage will keep them entertained. On Friday, Scant Band takes the stage at 6:30 p.m. followed by Buddy Whittington at 9:30. All day Saturday, there’s something for every taste as five bands play from noon until the headline band, Jon Christopher Davis & Lone Star Attitude, performs at 9:30 p.m. On Sunday, shows by the Jace Bersin Trio and a Led Zeppelin tribute band will wrap up festival live music.Moya said the festival is delighted to share the downtown action with the Levitt Pavilion’s final weekend of fall concerts. Ronnie Milsap performs on Friday, Deryl Dodd & the Homesick Cowboys are slated for Saturday, and Mingo Fishtrap takes the Levitt stage on Sunday.Art collectors who love ceramics will enjoy seeing the work of Cathy Crain, Ann Feldmier, Jim Huckaby and John Burnett. Glass artisans are Miki Oliver, Mary Shevlin and Leslie Friedman. Allow ample time to browse the jewelry exhibits by Jill Maerz, Linda Chrysler, Penny Brockie, Sibling Rivalry and others. Paintings by Brenda Brannon and David Tripp are only a couple of several artists in this category. Almost a dozen booths will have spectacular photography by such artists as Martin Pothierm, Shane Webster and many more. And don’t miss the beautiful wood creations by Sam Criswell, Troy Dale, Benny Goodman and Gary Anderson.Don’t worry about food and beverages because food trucks and all the downtown restaurants will be open throughout the event.There is no admission cost, and festival hours are 5 to 11 p.m. Friday, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday. Visit www.southstreetartfest.com to see the artists’ work and for more details.Front Street Festival now in 10th yearWhen the Front Street Festival opens Saturday at 10 a.m., it will mark a decade of what is now a beloved Arlington tradition. Hosted by the Arlington Historical Society, the one-day festival predictably has plenty of attractions related to history but also brings in excellent vendors for shoppers who love a chance to buy some unique merchandise. Good food and live performances on the main stage make it a festival worth attending.Anchored by Knapp Heritage Park, at 201 W. Front St. (just behind Arlington Music Hall and Babe’s Chicken Dinner House), the festival always has a small-town appeal to it. “This has become a family tradition for lots of people,” said historical society leader Geraldine Mills. “We are excited about our 10th year and look forward to seeing our faithful festival visitors and hope to see lots of first-time guests, too.”Inside the park, history comes to life with tours of log cabins and demonstrations of quilting, caning, and weaving. Blacksmith James Ryan will authentically forge and shape iron, and Cheryl Taylor West will portray schoolmarm Annie Webb Blanton in the one-room schoolhouse. As kids participate in an actual archeology dig, they will see a real flintmaker make arrowheads from the flint rocks they unearth. The youngsters can also make their own corn husk doll in workshops from 10 a.m to noon and from 2 to 4 p.m. Outside the park, almost 40 vendors and informational exhibits will line Front Street for attendees to shop and visit with representatives of local civic groups and companies. Vintage jewelry from Born Again Buttons & Beads, custom flutes from GoodWill Flutemaker and jewelry by Dream Out Loud are only a few.More fun awaits little passengers on the trackless train, Choo Choo Express, and you can get your portrait done at Caricatures by Gregg. Continuous performances will star Lantana, singing trio Adrianna Marie, Gerald Suggs & Patricia Le Ann, Ballet Folklorica, Deanna Wendolyn, Dance Theater Arlington and Kites & Boomerangs.Admission to the festival, exhibits and music is free. Activities in Knapp Heritage Park are $3 for people over 12 years of age.Learn more by calling Mills at 817-460-4001 or check details at www.historicalarlington.org.Annual luncheon for Downtown Arlington Management Corp.Celebrating the important role that cultural arts plays within our community, a luncheon hosted by Downtown Arlington Management Corp. on Friday will focus on how the arts in Arlington will help shape the future of the city.Keynote speaker is Gary Gibbs, executive director of the Texas Commission on the Arts. Gibbs will speak about the importance of cultural arts for a community’s economic vitality and the positive effect an established cultural arts district can have.Cast members from Altar Boyz, the hit show now playing at Theatre Arlington, will perform a number from the musical comedy about a fictitious Christian boy-band.“Downtown Arlington is home to a wonderful collection of cultural arts partners, and we are excited to highlight their great work and the positive economic impact they have on our community during our upcoming annual meeting,” said corporation CEO Tony Rutigliano. While guests enjoy viewing a small art exhibit and a tasty lunch served at First United Methodist Church, a jazz ensemble will entertain. Tickets are $35. Make reservations at downtownarlington.org/invitation.
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