Art Happening Featuring David Freeman , April, 2019

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There was a nice warm breeze as I wandered across Bruce Street to see the April 2019 Art Happening at the Arts In Common Gallery. The Sevierville Commons Arts Council had announced a presentation featuring local artist, David Freeman. I had seen his work before and had read a recent news article about him that was interesting so I knew that this would be a particularly interesting event.

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Featured artist, David Freeman, and Lee Murray. Interestingly, Lee is the subject of the portrait which is displayed behind them in the photo. You have to see it closer to appreciate the colors and light in the painting.

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Freeman is clearly a talented portraitist. The portrait to the left is the artist’s mother.

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These events are sure to have other artists in attendance. Aiden, Chuck, and Levi Ottolini enjoyed the April Art Happening. Chuck is a well known local artist in Sevierville. He is known for stained glass that has beautified many a church window in East Tennessee. Ottolini has also created some amazing things for local businesses. Go to Sevier Distilling Company and see the beautiful things in the tasting room.

IMG_4770Katie and Austin Williams came by to visit with a couple of very special guests!

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The music was quite relaxing and lent a nice ambiance to the event. Local musician, Tony Negrðn, plays many genres of music and makes the event feel so comfortable. His specialty is Smoky Mountain Delta Blues.

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David Freeman uses pastels, acrylic oils, and water colors in his art. A Cocke County native, Freeman is naturally inspired by the scenery and beauty of the Great Smoky Mountains.

IMG_4775Freeman grew up in Cocke County and attended Cocke County High School. He took classes in college and ended up majoring in art at ETSU.

 

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Freeman worked as a graphic artist for a while, then started doing pastels, pet portraits, and portraits in general.

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The table held beautiful displays.

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Refreshment was perfectly tailored for the event and for those who enjoy a treat after work. The cheesecake bites were perfect!

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Lee Murray created a beautiful table and delightful hors d’oeuvres. It was lovely.

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It is not near Christmast time, but I was really wanting this figurine!

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During the program, Freeman addressed the attendees and told about his path to being the artist that he is today. Most interesting, he told about creating a portrait of Christ during a church or revival service. It took him only 15 minutes and the final painting stood over 6 feet tall.

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Freeman has been painting large scale murals. This is a plan for one that will soon begin in Jefferson County, off of exit 417. He unrolled a template so that we could see what he was describing. Freeman has already painted a mural in Gatlinburg at the Blue Green Mountain Loft Resort. That mural is 12 feet tall and over 90 feet long. A must see!

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I was especially happy to run into an old friend at the event, Jack Maples, pictured right. David Freeman was the winner of a $1,000 prize in a widely publicized mural contest last year for Maples Motor Inn. The other local finalists were award winning artists Shannon Kelly and Mark Smothers. Jack Maples has commissioned a mural to be painted on the back of his motel, which faces LeConte Center. They are waiting for the city of Pigeon Forge to approve a new ordinance to allow it. I can’t wait to see this mural some day!
My friends know that I love murals and finding them in our travels. I have not known exactly how to explain this love of murals until I heard Freeman talk about it at the Art Happening last week. He said that he likes murals “because you feel like you stepped right into a painting.” Bingo! That explains why I love them so much.

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During the event, I chatted with several other artists. One artist creates figurative sculptures. This one is called What’s Up, Cupcake? These are amazing art dolls for collectiions.

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Here is her contact info. You can see three more of her figurative sculptures at the Arts in Common Gallery on Bruce Street.

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I admired these delicate creations by Emily Kelly Ede. Each was light as a feather and lovely. The prices are very good as well.

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She has more jewelry on display at the Arts in Common Gallery. These earrings are available in the gallery.

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It was soon time for me to go so I bid farewell to the artist and the attendees. Here are two of the Art Happening attendees and fans of David Freeman’s work. I love all the colors in this photo!

David Freeman is an outstanding local artist and I am excited to see the new murals that he will be creating, both in Pigeon Forge and in Jefferson County. This Art Happening allowed me to learn more about the artist and his work, especially in my favorite genre: murals.

Sadly, the Arts in Common Gallery may be closing in July because grants will soon be finished and they are not sure about the future. That means that you will have at least two more opportunities to visit an Art Happening in the Bruce Street gallery before anything changes. I encourage you to come spend a little time in their gallery. It is such a lovely place for visiting, relaxing, or their many ‘Make IT and Take It’ sessions. Even more, it enriches our community.

Art Happenings are one of the best ways to enjoy getting out and about in Sevierville. 

March 2019 Art Happening Featuring Audrie Prince

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Warmer weather made it nice to get out and about on Thursday so I was excited to arrive downtown for the Art Happening. Featured artist was Audrie Prince.

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The street was busy for 5:25 in the afternoon due to the Art Happening and a bustling dinner crowd at Graze Burgers.

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The weather was so nice that the doors remained open to enjoy a breeze.

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Audrie Prince also goes by the name Autumn Leaf in her work. She and her husband relocated here from Maine to enjoy the mountains and do what they love: art and aviation.

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Her work is beautifully displayed on the wall of the Arts in Common Gallery downtown. Prince is a multimedia artist who draws, paints, uses textiles and metals in her work.

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I, of course, chose the bear carving as a favorite.

Audrie has Penobscot roots; therefore, much of her art reflects nature and animals. The natural world. Prince is the only artist in the world who uses birch tree bark via paper cutting . She carves it using exacto knives and other implements.

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My colleague, Lee Anne Litton, would love this pig painted on feathers. So sweet! I have never seen anyone paint on feathers so that is unique.

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Fans and friends of the artist gathered around the collection.

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These are friends who have also acted in local theater productions with the artist. From left to right: Isabella Otter, Rendi Johnson, Judy Caldwell, and Cindy Johnson. After talking with them, I realized that I need to see some local productions soon!

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Audrie Prince also creates jewelry. These necklaces, modeled by her friends, were stunning!

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Also attending the Art Happening downtown were Rita Eakin, Jenny Dennis, and Catherine Fain Talbot. If I am not mistaken, Jenny’s paintings are featured on the walls  in the background of this picture. She already has two works commissioned in Knoxville.

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George and Jara Gillett enjoyed the Art Happening at the Arts in Common Gallery.

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Music sets the mood and it was nice. Tony Negron played some Smoky Mountain Delta Blues for the event. Find him on Facebook at   https://www.facebook.com/tcnegron/

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Refreshments at each Art Happening are unique and delightful, especially after a long day at work. These were wonderful!

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My favorite treats were the home made Petit Fours. Amazing! My compliments to the chef.

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IMG_3700Sevier Commons Arts Council board member, Crystal Lynn, and Audrie Prince take a moment to address attendees on the importance of the arts in our community.

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Audrie Prince also goes by the name ‘Autumn Leaf.’ Here is a beautiful necklace and some ways to contact her.

artisticadventureswithautumnleaf.com

https://www.facebook.com/ArtistAutumnLeaf/

IMG_3688There are more things being offered at the Arts in Common Gallery downtown. The Make It and Take It Workshop above will take place this Saturday, March 23 from      10:00 a.m. -12 p.m. Find more on the organization Facebook page.   https://www.facebook.com/CommonsArtsCouncil/

The Sevierville Commons Arts Council offers many opportunities to enjoy the arts in downtown Sevierville. Take advantage of these wonderful events. See you there!

A Visit to the Art Happening in Downtown Sevierville, February 2019

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The light from the Arts in Common Gallery was a beacon to all on a cool, rainy February evening. I parked across the street and hurried inside. Fighting off a cold or something going around, I still wanted to pop in to meet featured artist, Joan Swanson, and to see some of her work. It was a nice event and I was glad that I could make it.

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Street parking was still available, but you had to walk a little due to the Art Happening and the newly opened restaurant, Graze Burgers. It is always good to see busy streets in downtown Sevierville!

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My car was parked just steps away from the Arts in Common Gallery.

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I quickly ran into Andrea Wilson, board member of the Sevierville Commons Art Council, and featured artist, Joan Swanson. I like this area reserved for featured artist work because it invites you to look and linger a while. Natural light from the windows, wood flooring, and neutral wall color makes a perfect stage for local art. Swanson’s landscapes were well presented and I enjoyed taking my time to peruse them. Beach and mountain scenes are my favorites.

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Joan Swanson specializes in landscapes and pet portraits. You can find her pet portraits on the website Pawsofloveart.com .

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Look at these amazing pet portraits! They are extraordinary!

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I could not tell the difference between oil and pastel paintings. Joan told me that pastels go behind glass in a frame and oils do not. A simple fact, but something cool that I learned last Thursday at the Art Happening. Ask artist questions for you will learn a lot.

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I always enjoy going into the Arts in Common gallery to see the displays. There is always something new to see.

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Music was provided by Tony Negron, an instrumental, finger style guitarist. It was delightful.

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There are always refreshments so come to the Art Happening right after work.

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Everything is beautifully displayed.

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You are sure to find a gift at the Arts in Common Gallery. Shop while you visit.

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Arts Council board member, Laurel Kiewitt talks with Cheri Auman during the Art Happening.

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Local artist, Jenny Dennis, was enjoying the event. Look carefully at the four paintings on the wall because she created those pieces. You will be seeing more of her work in the future!

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Arts Council board member, Andrea Wilson, took a moment to address the crowd, encourage involvement with the group, and to detail upcoming spring events.

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I met Art Happening attendees Cheri Auman and David Freeman. Freeman has been a featured artist before and will soon be again.

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I always admire the beautiful, distressed brick walls in the gallery. The inset bookshelf is a lovely way to display art for the public. You can also purchase things if something catches your fancy.

Alas, an hour soon passed and I was ready to head home from a long day. Find the Sevierville Commons Arts Council on Facebook at this link. https://www.facebook.com/CommonsArtsCouncil/

See you at the next Art Happening on March 14th. The featured artist will be Audrie Prince. It is one of the best ways to be out and about in Sevierville. 

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December Art Happening 2018: Featured Artist, Pete Alcott

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I had to stay late at work due to a huge event and regretted arriving late to the Art Happening because it was an Open House and Chamber of Commerce After-Hours event. This was going to be a good one. Nonetheless, I was able to catch a little of the December Art Happening.

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I first ran into David Stanfill, membership Director for the Sevierville Chamber of Commerce, and Rich Wilson. They said that there were about 60-65 people in attendance, including over 50 Chamber of Commerce members.

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It was nice meeting Jolanta Didenko and Marilyn Davenport. Marilyn was the most recent artist honored at an Art Happening. Gallant owns a business downtown called Piano Lessons and More on Bruce Street. Her Facebook page is called Music and Arts in the Smokies. Here is a link

https://www.facebook.com/Music-and-Arts-in-the-Smokies-210491729027186/

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It is always nice meeting Tom and Kathy Kiewitt and Mary Ruden at the Art Happenings. I told Kathy that I have been admiring her macrame Christmas trees in the gallery. Mary’s creations are extraordinary and several are for sale in the Arts in Common Gallery.

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Also attending the December Art Happening were Faye Speck, Eme VanNus, Kaye Peltier, and Chris Myers.

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Andrea Wilson was manning a busy front desk.

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Jack and Sharon Mellor enjoyed the Art Happening. They are pictured here with the featured artist, Pete Alcott.

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Pete Alcott prefers to work with fused glass. The color and shine of these objects were extraordinary. Alcott lives in Gatlinburg and has a home studio. I always think that it is interesting to learn where artists do their work. Come to the Arts in Common Gallery to see these beautiful creations by Pete Alcott. IMG_1125.jpg

Unfortunately, my Art Happening visit was more brief than usual because I had to attend another event, but I thoroughly enjoyed the time that I had there. Get ready for new Art Happenings in 2019!

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Two of My Favorites for ‘Small Business Saturday’ in Sevierville 2018

IMG_0234There are businesses in town that I really enjoy visiting on any occasion, but I have two favorites when I need to find gifts—or just something for me. Tomorrow is ‘Small Business Saturday,’ a day set aside to recognize and to support small businesses. These are two of my favorites.

Two Coyotes Studio

Located downtown Sevierville, this studio is located almost across the street from the Dolly Parton statue and the courthouse.

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This is the view from near the front door of Two Coyotes Studio.

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The studio entrance is to the left of Southern Fried Hair. Just open the door and go upstairs.

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A delightful art studio is located at the top of the stairs. There are so many gifts and treasures to be found there.

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Artist Bev Gwinn Jones sells handcrafted jewelry, paintings, and many other gift ideas. They are very affordable for anyone. I have bought earrings and necklaces at this store over the years and always enjoy a visit. Christmas jewelry, especially earrings, are now in stock. You can find the perfect ‘conversation piece’ at this unique place.

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When I go to see Bev at Two Coyotes, I always have to walk over and see her picture that was taken with Sting. Lucky! Ask her to tell you the story.

I know that Bev will soon have a ‘sip and shop’ event. Here is her schedule for the next few weeks.

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Follow the studio on Facebook and Instagram. Here is a link.

https://www.facebook.com/BevGwinnJones/

Loralei’s

My favorite boutique in town is Loralei’s, across from Sevier County High School. The address is 1235 Dolly Parton Pkwy, Suite 7.

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There is plenty of parking and the store is nicely laid out. Merchandise and gifts are beautifully displayed.

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I wrote a blog story about this boutique a couple of years ago and the article has been viewed more than 465 times. It is a very popular place with locals.

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You are warmly greeted every time you enter this unique boutique.

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I have found so many gifts here over the years. Scarves, jewelry, hand creme, shirts, a clear bag so I can attend Vols games, mulling spices for winter beverages, and hand crafted soap. I am sure that there is more!

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The boutique offers something for everyone. Especially in regard to the clothing. I found a graphic t-shirt today during my visit that was very cute.

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It is a relaxing experience to shop at Loralei’s boutique and there is no pressure if you don’t find exactly what you are looking for, although I can’t imagine that.

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Here is a quick look at what you can find tomorrow for the Small Business Saturday event. Follow the boutique on Facebook. Here is a link: https://www.facebook.com/Loraleis.on.main/

Black Friday has passed, but there is more holiday shopping to be done. Even a small purchase can make a big difference for small businesses in our town. Try to visit these two places tomorrow, or any time that you are able, because you will not be disappointed.

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Art Happening November 2018: Featured Artist, Marilyn Davenport

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It was growing dark on Bruce Street as I parked and headed toward the Sevierville Arts in Common Gallery. The occasion was the November Art Happening in downtown Sevierville, featuring artist Marilyn Davenport. I have admired her work so this Art Happening has been anticipated for a while. Although I had to hurry to another event after 6:00, the Art Happening was nice and I wanted to linger.

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Upon entering the gallery, I first ran into Marilyn, her husband, and her niece. Pictured left to right: Scott Williams, Yvonne Williams, Marilyn and Bill Davenport. Some of the artist’s creations are featured on the wall behind them.

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Here are the ways to contact the artist and see more of her work. Isn’t this the most beautiful business card?

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I enjoyed seeing examples of the materials that Marilyn uses to create her art.

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Mendy Hodges and Scott Davenport attend the November Art Happening. Scott is Marilyn’s son and we were talking briefly about his mother and her workshop. Scott said, ” She loves to do this art and she, in turn, puts a lot of love into it.”

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It is nice to run into other local artists at the Art Happenings. Bobbi Lovell, pictured left, has paintings in the gallery. She is from Sevierville and has a studio near Douglas Lake. Jo Levkoff, pictured right, is a storyteller from Del Rio, Tennessee.

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Davenport’s jewelry is exquisite.

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Davenport uses polymer clay. It is especially interesting because the clay contains particles of silver, gold, bronze, and copper with the material.

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There is a sparkle and shine that is delightful to the eye.

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I love a fall table! The Art Happenings always feature refreshments so you can go straight there from work, grab a bite, enjoy art, and mingle.

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A sign of the season.

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Music was provided by New Mountain Grass. They have at least two CDs. One was recorded at Stella Parton’s studio in Nashville.

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Some things caught my fancy on the way out the door. Love these macrame trees.

I enjoyed this event and only regret not having more time to spend there. Happily, you can visit the gallery during the week if you need more time to look around. Some beautiful things are in there.

There will be a December Art Happening that will also serve as a Holiday Open House. That one will end the Art Happenings for 2018 quite well. See you then!

 

 

 

Spooktacular Block Party 2018: Gazebo and Bruce Street Areas, Part 1.

IMG_9243I went to the Sevier County Sheriff’s Office Spooktacular Block Party last year and had a great time so I had not planned to go again this year. It was huge! However, when my schedule opened up at the last minute, I had to go and see it again. I arrived soon after the start time at 5:00 and was so glad that I did because I saw a lot of good things. This is part one of a blog story: the downtown gazebo and Bruce Street areas. I’ll publish part 2 tomorrow.

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Evergreen Church provided the ‘trunk or treat area area the gazebo last year and I think that they were back this year. The church members are so wonderful that it makes me want to go attend services there some time—even though I have a ‘home church.’

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Loved this theme—and the little helper.

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Beauty and the Beast!

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This was an incredible set to give away candy.

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Smile!

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This set is from the movie “Up.”

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Ready to take flight!

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We finally found Waldo.

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I found some old friends that I had not seen in years. So good to see them!

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It was 73 degrees on Bruce Street so the weather could not have been better!

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The Venue had a private event going on, but still participated with candy. I went in to take a look.

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I was scared to go much further.

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I heard a good sound system so you should consider this site downtown for events.

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This was a good way to get around the Spooktacular.

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The Sevierville Commons Arts Council was holding a ‘Make it and Take it’ on Bruce Street.

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People gathered round to make felt ‘monster’ finger puppets. So cute!

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A felt monster finger puppet with a bat. Love it!

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More candy near the gazebo from a nice family in seasonal colors.

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This family was perfectly co-ordinated. Loved their costumes!

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I would have walked past this sidewalk painting on Bruce Street if the artist had not been nearby and explained that it is a 3D mural. It was amazing! Look at the rope painted across the center.

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You stand on the rope and photograph it. It appears to be a pit, but the surface is flat. This was the best thing that I saw this evening. Fabulous and fun!

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Here is the website to find this Newport based artist. https://www.easttnartscapes.org

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Perfect weather and families out enjoying a safe Halloween event on Bruce Street. And that is just the half of it. Tomorrow, we’ll go on Court Avenue and take a stroll around the courthouse. It was a nice evening out and about in Sevierville…

Art Happening: October 2018

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I was glad to make it to the Sevierville Commons Arts Council October Art Happening this evening. At an Art Happening you meet the featured artist and see examples of their best work. Featured artist, Donna Arensbak, presented some beautiful pottery pieces. Here is a quick rundown.

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I liked this entrance sign on the front of the Arts in Common Gallery with Sevier County Bank reflected in the background.

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Pictured left to right: Featured artist, Donna Arensbak, with her daughter, Lea Cole.


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Pictured left to right: Bill Griffith, Outreach Liaison for Arrowmont, Donna Arensbak, and Bill May, Executive Director of Arrowmont. Donna is connected to Arrowmont since 1999 as a student,  a worker, and as a volunteer. Her daughter also took classes at Arrowmont from childhood to adulthood. Certainly, there is a deep family connection to the arts and crafts education center in Gatlinburg.

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Also enjoying the Art Happening are Jill Greene, Frank Bulman, Donna Arensbak, Tammy Bulman, and Kathy Bulman.

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Sevier Commons Art Council Members were working quickly behind the counter to complete sales. You must see the beautiful things available in the Arts in Common Gallery!

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This bowl created by the artist was fabulous and I now could kick myself for not buying it!

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Seasonal pumpkins on sale in the gallery window.

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I know a lot of Smoky Bear fans who would be interested in this creation.

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I found the catering to be spectacular!

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A tower of treats!

It is not necessary to eat dinner before an Art Happening. Just come in as soon as you can after work and enjoy the evening.

IMG_8634 2 The sun was starting to go down on Bruce Street as I exited the event and made my way to the car. After talking to Jill Greene, I already look forward to the last two Art Happenings of 2018. Artists, beautiful creations, nice catering, and interesting people—mark your calendar for the second Thursday of each month. It is a favorite way to get out and about in Sevierville. 

Art Happening: August 9, 2018

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A thunderstorm was rolling into town, but that didn’t deter attendees from the August 2018 Art Happening in downtown Sevierville. The Arts in Common Gallery was bright and cheerful inside. Follow along to the first Art Happening in this new gallery.

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There are so many beautiful things to see in the gallery. I am always captivated by Mary Rudin’s sundial, pictured in the foreground.

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First, I ran into local artist Marilyn Davenport with her husband, Bill.

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Attendees talking to the featured artist, Tim Norris (pictured right). Tim Norris lives in Kodak and is actually an accomplished musician. He told me that he just started painting a year and a half ago. He started with watercolors then moved to acrylics. A friend of his also told me that Tim creates kaleidoscopes. So much talent in the fine arts! It was a pleasure to meet and talk to this artist.

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Music provided by T.J. Artis.

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These artists are twin sisters! Kaye and Faye moved here several months ago from Nashville and North Carolina, respectively. They are excited to be living here now and getting to know other artists in the area.

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Artists and supporters gather in the gallery. Pictured left to right: Ken, Jeff, Gail, and Charlotte.

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Featured artist, Tim Norris, and Davy Crockett.

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Local artists, Jenny Dennis and Rita Eakin, enjoyed the Art Happening. Jenny creates abstract art and works with textiles, which you can see on her website                             www. jennydennisart.com . Rita works with acrylics. She created the beautiful scarf that she is wearing during a class with Charlotte Wear at Charlotte’s Creative, just a few doors up the street. I must take this class!

IMG_7066Liza Bach and Jill Greene overseeing the August Art Happening. A good crowd enjoyed the evening!

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More fans of  Tim Norris had a good time. Pictured left to right: Julianna Norris, daughter of the featured artist; Kelsey, Brennon, and Taylor.

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Tim, Julianna, and Debbie Norris stand by some of his acrylic paintings. My favorite painting is in the center.

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The clouds are reflecting light and look almost real to me. Fabulous!

I really enjoyed meeting this artist, his family, their friends, and fellow art fans. It is such a nice way to spend time downtown in the evening. Now that the gallery is ready, Jill Greene told me that the Sevierville Commons Art Council plans to host Art Happenings on the second Thursday of each month. With Art Happenings, they will spotlight an artist who has work in the gallery. Look on the wall to the left of the front door because that will be the display space.

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I am excited that the Art Happenings are starting again downtown. The people are great and it is a feast for the eyes and the soul. You won’t find a better way to spend a little time downtown in the evening while out and about in Sevierville. See you there next month!

 

 

First Visit to Downtown Sevierville Farmers Market 2018 (and a sneak peek at Rocking the Commons)

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It was my first visit to the Farmers Market in downtown Sevierville this year.  I was running late so it was a quick tour around for me this time. Many of your favorite vendors were there. Follow me to take a quick tour here.

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The first reason I go to the market is for fresh produce so Henderson’s is hard to beat.

IMG_3378 2The lady who sells bread and fresh bagels is back. These are amazing!

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One of my favorite vendors is back with the handmade figurines. Remember last year when she designed some cat and dog figurines for me to give as gifts? She has a few new things for the holidays, so check them out next week.

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I am avoiding sugar right now, but imagine these products are wonderful on a morning biscuit. She also does the T-shirt quilts so ask her about them if you are interested.

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This lady is one of the friendliest vendors on Friday so go say “hello.” She had some ‘special helpers’ too. Everyone needs soaps and scrubs and hers are so reasonably priced.

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I asked about the charcoal ingredient and she replied that it was good for problem skin and complexions. It helps remove toxins too.

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These little cakes were so light. The sweet potato butter adds the moisture. Sounds so good!

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I got close to the end of the market time so I didn’t really run into a lot of people. Will try to be earlier next week. Next, I crossed the street to see a sneak peek of the Rocking the Commons event, sponsored by the Sevierville Arts Commons.

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These rockers are gorgeous! They will be auctioned off today at 4:00.

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Go Vols !

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Each rocker is one of a kind. Collector’s item!

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Some lucky people will have a one of a kind rocking chair to enjoy on the porch this summer. See you downtown and out and about in Sevierville.