Popular SJMC arts festival back after one-year hiatus
Now nineteen years strong, the St. John Medical Center Festival of the Arts will bring more than 200 fine artists and craftpersons from across the country to Westlake. The 2012 Festival of the Arts will welcome the community on the following dates and times: Friday, July 6, from 6-9 p.m.; Saturday, July 7, from 10 a.m.-7 p.m. and Sunday, July 8, from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. To assist with parking issues, a shuttle bus service will drop off and pick up festival-goers at the Church on the Rise (directly across the street from the hospital on Crocker Road). There will be ample parking close to the event, and a small fee for parking.
As in the past, admission to the Festival is free and open to the public. Visitors are encouraged to bring nonperishable food items which will be donated to local food banks. Also SJMC's Community Outreach will offer free health screenings from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday only. The free screenings include blood pressure, cholesterol and glucose. The tradition of an outdoor Sunday Mass on the last day of the Festival will continue this year at 9 a.m. on July 8.
“As a Catholic Hospital, we have made it a tradition to offer a public outdoor Mass,” says William A. Young Jr., St. John Medical Center president and CEO. “We have had several hundred area residents attend the Mass and each year attendance grows.”
This year the mass tent will be pitched close to the UH Seidman Cancer Center at SJMC site, near Crocker Road.
The 2012 Festival of the Arts also features a variety of food stations, inflatable bounce houses and hands-on children’s craft activities. Situated in an idyllic setting along a one-half-mile walking track, a diverse representation of mixed media will include jewelry, wearable art, stained glass, basketry, ceramics, watercolors, oils, photography and more. The Festival of the Arts is a juried show and prize money is awarded to winners in several categories.
The caliber of artists has grown over the years and the bar was set high nineteen years ago when Judy Burke and Ruth Hopkins both organized the first event. Since that time the Festival has grown into one of the premier arts and crafts event in northeastern Ohio. For the past several years, Ardis Radak and Camille Anter have taken over the event reins and the weekend has reached new heights in its offerings and family fun.
“It’s amazing how the event has grown over the years,” says Young. “The weekend would not be possible without the tremendous support received by our sponsors, the community, as well as wonderful artists and their creative spirit.”
If you’re feeling lucky, you can take a chance on WDOK ATM (“A Ton of Money”) machine on Saturday only. The LifeShare Community Blood Services will be on campus for those wishing to donate blood.
“St. John Medical Center is a perfect location to host this type of venue,” adds Young. “This event affords us an opportunity in which to thank the community for its ongoing support.”
Each year the event grows in number of vendors and festival-goers and this year promises to be the best ever. New vendors are selected and different media is showcased.
“We never want the show to become routine or standard,” says Patrick J. Garmone, director of SJMC's marketing and public relations. “Those in charge make it a point to rotate vendors to keep it fresh and new. Of course, some of the most popular artisans will be back to share their works of art.”
St. John Medical Center Festival of the Arts is located at 29000 Center Ridge Rd. in Westlake. Festival directions, as well as additional information can be found at www.stjohnmedicalcenter.net.