Planning, Organizing and Managing Your Art Event
I ask myself almost every day, how did I get this involved. I'm retired and should be watching soap operas -- NOT. I had started painting when I lived in Mexico and when I returned to Virginia, I needed new teachers. I took a lot of classes often traveling long distances--life was good. Then I discovered a teacher I really bonded with and asked her if she would come to Virginia to teach, she said yes. I was really surprised as I don't even think the thought had entered my mind until the question popped out of my mouth and I didn't have any type of track record but she trusted me. The next class I took, the same thing happened. Now I had two teachers. The next class I took, it happened again. This turned into Two Rivers Art Workshops, sponsoring classes, workshops, retreats and international trips with local as well as internationally recognized teachers. I was having fun. If it isn't fun, I don't do it!
Then I received THE phone call, Deborah Aylor, Spotsylvania County’s Director of Tourism who wanted to know if I was interested in putting together an Arts Festival. I knew we needed something like this in our area and as I had heard many artists ask for a major event where they could show and sell their work. How could I say no? I don’t believe either of us envisioned the initial success of this project. The first Spotsy Arts Festival, resulting from this collaborative venture, was held in August 2018 and attracted artists and artisans from Florida to New York. It was a huge success with 95% of the 2018 Exhibitors returning for the 2019 Festival. Many of these Exhibitors have also recommended this event to others who have also applied.
I am currently working with a couple other communities with the possibility of developing a similar event in their community. Also, we will sponsor a school program in Spotsylvania County in coordination with the Spotsy Arts Festival starting in 2020. This is so exciting!