• Suncoast Arts Fest Returns for its Twelfth Year on January 21-22 at The Shops at Wiregrass

    Visitors browse artwork from over 120 fine artists and craftsmen

    Visitors browse artwork from over 120 fine artists and craftsmen

    PASCO COUNTY, Florida (January 13, 2017) – The Fine Arts of the Suncoast, Inc. will present its twelfth annual Suncoast Arts Fest (SAF) on January 21-22, 2017 at The Shops at Wiregrass. Suncoast Arts Fest is the largest fine arts and crafts festival in Pasco County. It’s free and open to the public and showcases the work of fine artists and craftsman from around the country, live entertainment, chalk art murals, kids’ art projects and more.

    This year, SAF has attracted a record 126 artists who will be exhibiting their work for sale. Many are local, but some will be traveling from as far away as Alaska, California, Quebec and Tennessee. Entry into the festival was a competitive process with close to 170 applicants in several categories, including Ceramics/Clay, Digital, Drawing, Fiber, Glass, Jewelry, Leather, Metal, Mixed Media, Painting, Photography, Printmaking, Sculpture and Wood. Those selected to participate in the festival will be competing for $14,000 in cash prizes.

    Live entertainment is presented by Visit Pasco and Team Farrell and will be featured on the Mainstage at Center Court, which is located at the festival mid-point, across from Macy’s. On Saturday, The Richey Suncoast Kid’s Theatre and The Eighth Note, a children’s acapella group, will kick off the festival, followed by concert sets with Sassafras Bluegrass Band; When In Rome; and Saturday headliners, Hope Darling Band. On Sunday, Suncoast Arts Fest media sponsor, WGHR Hits106, will be broadcasting live, with performances on the Mainstage by master slide guitarist, John Emil; local Trop Rock favorites, The De Lei’ed Parrots; and closing out the festival, Sarasota Slim. In addition, guests will enjoy a special performance by the Brandon Ballet on Sunday in front of JCPenney’s, and roving performers from the Bay Area Renaissance Festival on both Saturday and Sunday. For a full entertainment schedule, visit http://suncoastartsfest.com/entertainment/.

    There will be plenty of activities for the kids too. Presented by Suncoast Credit Union, the Kids’ Art Garden will feature tons of fun, free art projects, a scavenger hunt through the festival, and face painting. The Art Makerspace will also have projects and activities that allow visitors of all ages to explore the connection between science, technology, engineering, the arts and math (STEAM).

    Additional highlights include professional chalk art, custom silk-screened T-shirts by Impress Ink, and a student Emerging Artist exhibit, featuring artwork by Pasco County elementary, middle and high school students.

    All proceeds from the Suncoast Arts Fest benefit “Arts for Kids,” a grant fund created by the festival’s parent 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, Fine Arts of the Suncoast, Inc.. This mini-grant program provides project supplemental arts education funding in public, private and charter schools in Pasco County. In 2017, over $6,000 in mini-grants will be awarded, bringing the grand total distributed to almost $100,000 since the nonprofit’s inception.

    The Fine Arts of the Suncoast, Inc. is the festival’s producing organization. The Twelfth Annual Suncoast Arts Fest is sponsored in part by the State of Florida, Department of State, Division of Cultural Affairs and the Florida Council on Arts and Culture; The Shops at Wiregrass; Jenniferlee Events; Visit Pasco; Team Farrell; Suncoast Credit Union; Tampa Bay Times; WGHR Hits 106; and GEICO.

    For more information, visit www.suncoastartsfest.com.

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