Pops of Color Brighten Up April
Apr 08, 2014 09:27AM
● By Anonymous
Photos courtesy of Ennis CVB.
Celebrate 15 years of Southlake’s premier arts festival this month
It’s hard to believe that it’s been a decade-and-a-half since Southlake’s three-day juried fine arts festival first began to draw renowned artists and entertainment to Northeast Tarrant County. What started as a Southlake Women’s Club community fundraiser whose first event attracted 40 artists has grown to receive hundreds of applications from across the country and internationally. Additionally, since its inception, Art in the Square has raised approximately $2 million for local charities that support women, families and children.
This year’s fun-filled festival, which will take place April 25-27, drew the largest number of applicants to date — 723 artists. More than 150 from 26 different states and five countries were selected to showcase their work, while nine featured artists will also get to display their mixed media, drawings, paintings and more in the rotundas of Southlake Town Hall as a preview to the big weekend. The lucky winners include Erin Hanson, Martin Lambuth, Janelle Lindley, Anne London, Michelle Mardis, Dean Russell Thompson, Preston Steed and Dennis Rhoades. TJ Thompson, this year’s featured T-shirt artist, will also have his work on display. Thompson is known for his ability to capture ordinary lives and routine moments on canvas, painting with oil and acrylic.
Although Art in the Square is sticking with many of its traditions, new features also abound this year. Destination Alley, a quaint area sponsored by Celebrity Cruises, will include a sidewalk chalk artist, beverage stand and Bellatrino Italian food truck near Mi Cocina on Main St. As part of the student art competition, a new Lone Star Artist Award will be given to one Northeast Tarrant County high school student artist whose winning artwork will be displayed in the rotunda of the state capitol.
Taking the stage for the weekend’s musical entertainment will be various cover, country and rock bands, including headliner The Cadillac Three — currently on tour with Jake Owen — plus Kaela Sinclair and her band (flip to page 42 to learn more about Kaela). Kids will especially love the return of The Zone, which features a climbing wall, bungee jump, inflatables, face painting and snow cones.
Whether you plan to visit Art in the Square for the artwork, the music, the food and drink or all of the above, this year’s festival is sure to be another successful weekend full of fun for the whole family. Be sure to visit ArtInTheSquare.com for more information and stop by Southlake Town Hall to check out the featured artists before the big event!
Shades of Blue
Just 30 miles south of downtown Dallas off of I.H. 45 sits the charming city of Ennis. Although famous for its railroad and cotton history, the town is most well known for its fields of bluebonnets. The beautifully blue state flower of Texas runs rampant across the small suburb, today known as the Official Bluebonnet City of Texas. Every April, the city’s bluebonnet trails open to the public for tours, as the flowers start blooming around the last week in March.
This year marks 63 years of the bluebonnet trails, which span more than 40 picturesque miles. To commemorate the occasion, the Ennis Garden Club is hosting the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Festival from April 12-13. Enjoy arts and crafts exhibits, a children’s activity area, food and drink, bluebonnet souvenirs and exciting live entertainment, plus a tour of the railroad and heritage museum. A Saturday car show will feature an exhibition of antique vehicles manufactured from extinct corporations like Packard, Hupmobile and Kaiser. Annually, the bluebonnet trails draw 100,000 eager visitors throughout the month of April, while the festival draws 30,000.
According to Sandy Anderson, chairman of the Ennis Bluebonnet Trails Project, the garden club takes donations from the festival and uses it to reseed areas in and around Ennis. They also visit schoolchildren to teach them about wildflowers and educate visitors about the best time to plant and how to properly care for their bluebonnets.
Visit VisitEnnis.org to learn more about the trails and the festival.