Thanks for another enjoyable Dogwood Fine Arts Festival

Published 9:52 am Monday, May 16, 2016

Another week of fine arts and culture is in the books.

The 25th annual Dogwood Fine Arts Festival officially wrapped up Sunday, after 10 days of lectures, presentations and shows offered to residents and visitors of the Grand Old City.

Once again, the volunteers with the festival put together a slate of artists and performers that were entertaining, educational and enlightening.

Families were wowed by the latent talent in our local children and teenagers brought out by the acrobats with the Aerial Angels during the Starfish Circus.

Authors Mardi Jo Link and James Lenfestey shared with audiences their years of experience in two very different yet similar forms of writing, telling them it is never too late to begin the second act of your career.

Student actors with Southwestern Michigan College performed a script reading for the third annual Emerging Playwright Awards, where for the second time in three years a bright and talented University of Michigan student had his work featured — and once again had audiences roaring with laughter.

Professional framer Dave Makielski informed local artists and art collectors that what surrounds a painting or other piece of artwork can be just as important as the piece itself.

Storyteller Michael Reno Harrell, guitar in hand, entertained audiences with his unique southern brand of wit and humor.

Dowagiac’s student bands and choirs once again drew a packed house to the high school gymnasium, showing that there’s still plenty of talent developing in Dowagiac as well.

Musicians with Michigan State University’s Professors of Jazz offered people a chance to listen to a classical American style of music that still remains as cool as ever.

And finally, one of the city’s own returned home, as Dowagiac native Rick Herter closed out this year’s festival by sharing the stories of his artwork — and himself — with audiences.

Throughout the festival, downtown visitors had a chance to check out some artwork featured in local store windows during the Up Front Art Walk, while people passing by Kincheloe or Patrick Hamilton elementary schools could see the student-made sculptures of the Funky Junk art show.

We want to thank the men and women who dedicate countless hours to making this great festival happen each and every year. While it is certainly not an easy task, your work continues to raise the prestige of Dowagiac and is a great service to its residents.

We also want to thank the people who took some time out of their busy lives to attend the events, and to the companies and foundations that once again stepped up to sponsor the festival. It is your support that ultimately allows this grand tradition to keep going.

For those of you who skipped out on the events this year, all we can ask is: what are you waiting for?


Opinions expressed are those of the editorial board consisting of Publisher Michael Caldwell and editors Ambrosia Neldon, Craig Haupert, Ted Yoakum and Scott Novak.