Creativity And Nature At Wild For The Arts Festival

Friends of MacGregor Point Provincial Park invite everyone to leave their lily pads and hop on over to Wild for the Arts. This two-day outdoor festival puts creativity and nature together at the Port Elgin-area park, September 18 and 19. In the autumn beauty of the Lake Huron shoreline, visitors and creators alike will find inspiration and family fun amid paintings, photography, pottery, drama, written word, music, and much more.

Starting at the Park’s Visitor Centre, follow the Artists’ Adventure Trail to the Ash Woods Campground. Both Saturday and Sunday, a campsite studio tour lets visitors walk the Ash Woods loop, stopping to talk with artists in many media. The Tent of Arts features visual works on Saturday and literary arts on Sunday. For the family, scavenger hunts, kids’ art activities, and musical meanderings happen both days. Saturday features a boardwalk theatre performance, and three workshops.

Kerry Jarvis, nature photographer, leads a two-part workshop on tips and techniques that includes an outdoor photo shoot and interpretation of participants’ work. Artist Christa Eggers offers a workshop using Pen, Ink, and Watercolour, with both full-day and half-day option. A Writing Workout with author and editor Anne Duke Judd lets participants flex their creative muscles. Pre-registration is suggested for all workshops (519-832-6232).

Saturday evening provides two events: a casual campfire circle showcasing talents of campers, staff, and artists in music, storytelling, or skits. Beyond the park, a joint event at Bruce County Museum & Cultural Centre features Jim and Sue Waddington, whose family went on a thirty-year quest following the landscapes of the Group of Seven. Special ticket prices apply for festival participants.

Artists participating in either the studio tour or the Saturday Tent of Arts include painters Scott Bester, Christa Eggers, Hermina Fleet, Colleen Cassidy-Wallace, Denise Ribson, Mara Minuzzo, Sheila Szabototh, and Tim Reaburn. Artists in wood from the Grey Bruce Wood Turners’ Guild, potters Tammy Ward, Kevin and Corina Wain, sculptor Dianne Ramsey, and jeweller Beth Taylor offer three-dimensional artworks. Look for photography by Kerry Jarvis, Ruth Mittelholtz, and the Sauble Beach Camera Club.

Sunday in the Tent of Arts, readers will find mystery, recipes, poetry, kid’s stories, and more when they meet writers Anne Grobbo, Donna Mann, Tamara Pasley, Anne Duke Judd, and Sandra Howe with the Huron Poetry Collective.

Admission to the Park is free, as are most of the activities. Both days, Southampton Rotarians will offer a BBQ lunch at modest cost; tickets for the Saturday supper [chicken barbecue] must be reserved by September 15. Workshop fees vary from $25 to $55. Full information on the Web at www.friendsofmacgregor.org or by calling the Visitor Centre 519-389-6232. For camping reservations, www.ontarioparks.com

Wild for the Arts festival proceeds support the projects of Friends of MacGregor Point Park, including the proposed construction of a viewing blind along the Ducks Unlimited Pond.

Wild for the Arts festival is a co-operative project of the Friends of MacGregor Point Park, Ontario Power Generation, Canadian Heritage and MacGregor Point Provincial Park, Ontario Parks.

For more information call 519-389-6232 or send an email to fompp@bmts.com or norah.toth@ontario.ca