Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Eyes on H-E-B: Five things to know about Bedford ArtsFest

Suzuki Strings performs at last year’s Bedford ArtsFest.
Suzuki Strings performs at last year’s Bedford ArtsFest. Courtesy photo

“In collaboration with the Bedford Cultural Commission, the city of Bedford presents ArtsFest to promote and celebrate the arts in Bedford with a single-day event that adds vibrancy to the Mid-Cities by creating opportunities for people of all ages, cultures and backgrounds to celebrate the arts of North Texas,” said event coordinator Jeff Florey.

The art

Festivalgoers will see an impressive selection of juried art pieces including those winning cash prizes for being judged as best of show and the first two runners-up. The work of emerging student-artists in grades K-12 will also be on display. Art collectors can add to their collections from the regional artists and craftsmen who will bring their latest creations.

“Throughout the year I have attended events in other cities featuring craftsmen and artisans,” said Bedford Mayor Jim Griffin. “None of them exceeds the quality of artistry that will be featured at ArtsFest 2016, when our own local artists will have an opportunity to share their talents with our community.”

The food

There’s a big assortment of food vendors to fit every appetite, so come early and stay late without ever being hungry. Guest will get the wheel deal when Lee’s Grilled Cheese, Kona Ice and Krazy Cowboy roll their trucks in. And of course, there will be craft beers, wine and soft drinks along with all the other traditional festival fare.

The music

Continuous shows in two areas — the community performance space and the live music stage — means this festival will rock. “This family-friendly festival will feature musicians and performers who contribute to the vibrant heritage of the North Texas region,” said Florey.

Bands performing will include the likes of Poly Hwy, John Tipton, Grady Spencer & The Work, Dale Watson, Chaz Marie Band, Jack Kerowax and headliner Holy Moly.

The shopping

Shopaholics can indulge their passion because ArtsFest has more than 50 arts and crafts exhibitors.

Come see them all, but here’s a brief random sampling (Google them to discover their products): Hanging By Threads, Life is Fragile, Creede Creations, Big T Woodworks, Dizzy B’s, Clover Hollow Soaps & Sundries, Artisan Handmade Jewelry, Running Dog Batiks, Not Just Canvas, Hippie Notions, Tina’s Treasures, Deco Beading, Ahaus Pottery, Sweatshop Robot, Wandering Thistle Studio, Ami’s Art Glass and dozens more.

The activities

A kids area will offer a slew of activities to keep the younger set engaged, and adults will find craft and fun activities to do as well.

“The emerging cultural district and events such as ArtsFest have a groundswell of support and are contributing to building a vibrant sense of community in Bedford,” said Councilman Ray Champney.

Paint ’n’ Party will be on-site from 11 a.m to 1 p.m. to help you create your very own masterpiece in just an hour or two. They bring the supplies and you and your friends just show up and leave with bragging rights on your personal art piece. Cost is $30 per person; limit of 30 participants.

If you go (and you should!): 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. April 2 at Boys Ranch Park, 2801 Forest Ridge Drive. Admission and parking are free.

Business, health and benefits expo for seniors March 31

If you’re part of the senior sphere (the cool crowd), this is a heads-up for you. Get your calendar out and reserve two hours (10 a.m. to noon) on March 31 for the expo at the Hurst Senior Activities Center.

“We’ve had a great response to this year’s expo,” said Michelle Varley, who is coordinating the event. “Over 60 business and service providers will be there.”

The festive event is geared toward “educating individuals, changing families and growing communities,” according to promotional messages about the expo, with an emphasis on achieving a “healthy body and healthy life.”

Be sure to check out the products and learn about the services at the more than 60 booths set up. Reps from The Way to Wellness, Radiant Smiles, Neptune Society, AARP Safe Driving, Accuquest Hearing, Sports & Wellness, Aglesss Grace, Chateau on Wildbriar Lake, Back in Motion, Elevation Health and a slew of others will be waiting to visit with expo guests.

Others not to miss are Handy Annie Services, Home Instead, TMT Spa, Texas Silver Haired Legislature, Gotta Go Tours by Pattie, Clear Captions, Six Flags, Hurricane Harbor and several insurance vendors and a number of retirement and senior living solutions.

The venue is at 700 Heritage Circle. Contact Varley at 817-788-7710 to inquire.

Masterworks concert series at a glance

▪ A Hard Night’s Day — The Beatles Tribute Band plays at 7 p.m. April 1 at the Leon Hogg Amphitheater, 1951 Bear Creek Parkway.

▪ Whitehouse Harmony performs some great Bluegrass at 7 p.m. Thursday at Hurst Public Library, 901 Precinct Line Road.

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