November 8–9, 2014
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The nationally recognized Downtown Festival & Art Show transforms downtown Gainesville into a venue for award-winning artists and draws a crowd of more than 100,000. Presented by the City of Gainesville Department of Parks, Recreation and Cultural Affairs, the festival celebrates its 33rd anniversary in 2014. For two days, visitors can leisurely stroll through historic downtown and marvel at works from more than 250 of the nation’s most talented artists, who display their original oils and acrylics, vibrant watercolors, captivating sculptures, dazzling jewelry, decorative ceramics and vivid photography. With such a diverse array of unique art displayed for sale and competition, the Downtown Festival & Art Show is a great way to purchase one-of-a-kind art for you or a friend.
This year the festival will be held on Saturday, November 8, and Sunday, November 9, from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Since its creation, Downtown Festival & Art Show has risen dramatically in national rankings. For the past three years, Sunshine Artist magazine has recognized the festival as one of the top 30 fairs and festivals in the country, naming it No. 12 in 2014.
The festival is recognized not only for its art but also for its entertainment. Music from local bands and solo musicians features a blend of folk, jazz, country, pop and soul genres. Dance companies also catch the eyes of the crowd with ballet, jazz, modern and international dance performances.
The soulful sound of blues will usher in the Downtown Festival & Art Show weekend with a free Downtown Blues Concert, presented by the North Central Florida Blues Society, on Friday Nov. 7 from 7 to 10 p.m. at the Bo Diddley Community Plaza. Rick Randlett will open the evening with his all-original acoustic blues, blending tradition with a modern touch. The Bridget Kelly Band will follow with an electric vibe that blends classic blues with elements of guitar-driven Texas and Memphis blues. Headlining the concert is the 2014 International Blues Challenge winner, the Selwyn Birchwood Band, with their hip-shaking mix of blues. Throughout the weekend, the Festival will showcase continuous live music and performances on three stages that will feature solo musicians, bands and dance companies. These musical treats are absolutely free and open to the public.
While adults explore art booths and listen to music, children can unleash their artistic talents at the "Imagination Station," They can design masks, paint their own masterpieces, create buttons and puppets, sculpt clay and draw with sidewalk chalk. If they’re looking for entertainment, children can sit back and enjoy puppet shows, magic acts and music performances that are sure to bring smiles to their faces. Art Education students from the University of Florida work diligently throughout the fall semester to produce this creative and inspirational experience for children of all ages.
Food booths mingle with artist booths at the festival, attracting customers with mouth-watering treats varying from creamy, homemade ice cream to crisp, golden Bloomin’Onion. Visitors can also taste authentic Pad-Thai cuisine, sweet barbecue ribs, hearty Mediterranean pitas and Cajun jambalaya.
With more than 20 food vendors, the Festival incorporates many multicultural dishes to satisfy anyone’s appetite!
Dogs on leashes are permitted.
Parking in the City parking garage, 2 blocks west of Main Street, is $1.00 per hour with $6.00 maximum and open 24 hours a day.
For more parking information Click Here.
The 34th Downtown Festival & Art Show,
November 14 & 15, 2015.
200 East University Ave
City of Gainesville
Division of Cultural Affairs
302 NE 6th Avenue
Mailing address: Station 30
PO Box 490
Gainesville, FL 32627
The 33rd Annual Downtown Festival & Art Show is proud to present this year’s poster artist, Kana Handel. The poster showcases this local artist’s passion for storytelling, her love of nature and her admiration for her adopted hometown. Entitled “‘Round Midnight on the Prairie,” this year’s poster depicts alligators gathered together on a boat to form a jazz band late at night somewhere over the prairie. In painting this piece, Handel wanted to create a story around key elements identified with Gainesville, the natural beauty and serenity of Payne’s Prairie Preserve State Park, and the cultural wealth of the city’s art and music. She hopes this image invites everyone to the peaceful dreamy world.
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