Years from now, when they choose events that typified life in late 20th-century Florida, they would do well to describe Art Harvest.
In its 34th outing, Art Harvest is the oldest major outdoor art festival in the Tampa Bay area. Scheduled on the first weekend in November, its arrival is so dependable you could mark your calendar by it. You can count on seeing some of the best fine art and crafts available for purchase. Most of the time, you can expect sunny skies and comfortable temperatures.
As in the past, the show is set in Dunedin's spacious Highlander Park. About 200 artists from throughout the United States will offer paintings, mixed media, ceramics, jewelry, fibers, sculpture, metal, wood and photography. Many have won major awards.
The artists will vie for $17,000 in prize money (chosen by the judges) and additional purchase awards (chosen by purchaser). Choosing winners will be Allan Peterson, chair, visual arts department and director, visual arts gallery at Pensacola Junior College, Pensacola, and Neil Watson, curator of exhibitions and contemporary art at the Norton Museum of Art, West Palm Beach, and former curator at the Tampa Museum of Art.
If you plan to go, wear comfortable shoes, and check the weather forecast. Arrive early. Pick up a map at the show entry, and take a minute or two to mark your route. If you are interested in specific artists or media, locate and circle them on the map.
Talk to the artists. Get to know their techniques, their inspirations and their work. Remember: Outdoor shows provide a necessary source of their income, and your purchase is a form of patronage that encourages them to return.
Several area restaurants will offer food and drink for purchase: Sisters, Casa Tina, Black Cat, Just Desserts, Sea Sea Riders, Red Roe, Sun Groves and Dunedin Brewery.
For a souvenir of the day, visitors can buy a poster by Eric Adolphson of Indian Harbour Beach, Florida and Columbus, Ohio. And, as always, youngsters can do their own art in a special children's tent.
Art Harvest is presented by the Junior League of Clearwater-Dunedin and the City of Dunedin.
AT A GLANCE
34th Annual Art Harvest
Where: Where: Highlander Park, corner of Michigan Boulevard and Pinehurst Avenue, Dunedin.
When: 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.
Cost: Cost: Free.
Parking: $2 donation at Highlander Park; $1 for shuttle bus from shopping-center parking lot on northwest corner of Alt. 19 and Curlew Road.
Information: Information: Dunedin Fine Art Center, 738-1892.