Artist's paradise: Park festival returns this weekend

One of the largest art shows in the Southwest kicks off Saturday as the annual Art in the Park returns to Veterans Memorial Park.

Now in its 48th year, the collection of local artists and vendors has “something for everyone,” from paintings, jewelry, glass, wood, metal, ceramics, candles, gourmet foods, photography, lotions, fiber arts, yard art and more available to the estimated 10,000 to 15,000 attendees expected to show up.

The Huachuca Art Association has been putting on the event since the beginning. The local nonprofit works to encourage and nurture local artists.

Volunteers help run the event, handing out vendor packets and making sure vendors know where they need to be. The HAA also has an info booth to help people find what they are looking for.

The event features a juried show, with each vendor in attendance also submitting examples of their work. This is done to ensure each vendor is presenting original works and not something manufactured elsewhere.

Organizers in the past have credited the venue with one reason the event is so successful, with artists having space to park behind their booths, freeing up room for guests in the parking lot.

Each of the participating food booths partners with a local nonprofit and gives a percentage of the earnings to the group. Nonprofit groups can also get a space in the back of the event for free where they can provide information on their organizations and potentially find donors or supporters.

Two raffles will be available, with more than $700 worth of either art supplies or original art from 23 artists going to the lucky winners. Tickets are $1 each, six for $5 or 25 for $20 and will be available at the HAA booth.

The earnings from booth sales go back into the HAA to support their mission of promoting local arts and their gallery.

The event runs 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Parking and admission are free.


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