Winthrop Town Centre artist in residence Bryant Martinez capped off a successful Winthrop Arts Festival on Thursday by presenting a check for $2,000 to Hillsborough Community College Brandon president Carlos Soto at the Beaux Arts Gallery.
The donation will go toward a book fund for needy students in the HCC Fire Academy. Martinez felt compelled to support the academy in part because of the support he received from paramedics after a serious 2006 accident.
The festival, which took place March 23-24, brought together artists and patrons as well as students and teachers from Winthrop Charter Academy and Blake High School. Some teachers and students from the two schools actually sold works of art during the festival.
Martinez also credited support from Publix, the Fishhawk-Riverview Rotary Club, the Emergency Care Help Organization and the Tampa Bay Times for helping grow the festival.
"My daughter came up with this saying — 'Art develops community' — and I feel like that's what this art festival is doing," Martinez said.