Written by Nathan Wertheimer
Mt. Dora, FL – Come on down this weekend to the 42nd Annual Mt Dora Arts Festival in the heart of Downtown Mount Dora. This is a renowned arts festival with some of the best artists in the country attending and selling their works of art. It is worth a visit to this event, which is being held on February 4, & 5, 2017.
Driving to Downtown Mt. Dora from Orlando is only a short 30-minute drive. Take Highway 441 North from Orlando and one will hit the Mt. Dora City limits. Look for the Downtown signs to point you in the right direction. It is recommitted to make it a day trip. There is much to see and do in Mt. Dora. Parking may be an issue, but please don’t let it stop you from visiting this arts festival. There is some free parking in the residential side of town. Also, there are some business and homeowners who are charging a fee to park on their property. Another alternative is to use the satellite parking lot that uses buses to bring people to and from this event.
Upon arriving at this art festival one will notice artists and vendors tents set-up along both sides of the street on Donnelly Street. Plus, there is a few more streets filled with artist’s tents too. It is estimated to walk around this arts festival will take about 2-3 hours depending on what booths one looks at. The art festival is open during the daytime whether it is rains or shines.
While walking around the town one will find New England architecture and breathtaking views of Lake Dora is the backdrop for this event. In addition to the endless rows of fine art, including oil paintings, watercolors, acrylics, clay, sculpture and photography, the festival features local and regional musical entertainment at a main stage in Donnelly Park. Bring a chair and sit and enjoy the music on the park lawn.
Festival food will be provided in separate food courts and local downtown restaurants offer a wide variety of cuisine. As well as the local merchants will be open for extra shopping. Plus, many stores have sidewalk sales too. Look for the great bargains.
Be kind to your pets — please leave them at home when you visit the Festival. Don’t leave them in your vehicle or tied to a street post. The art festival apologizes for this inconvenience. Service animals are always welcome.
Last year’s art festival Best of Show was artist Chelsea Smith. Her artwork is feature on this year’s Mt. Dora Arts Festival Poster and marketing material. Attendees can purchase t-shirts and posters of her artwork at the festival. I have had a chance in the past to meet her. This artist is educated from degrees from Seminole State College and University of Central Florida in both Graphic Design and in Fine Arts. She has won many awards throughout the year with her young career as an artist. If you have a chance stop and meet her in person. She is a very friendly person. For more information on this artist go to www.artbychelsea.com .
This fine arts festival has mainly high-end works of art. There are a few crafts booth too. While walking around this arts festival attendees show pick up a free festival guide to give one insight into some of the feature artists and vendors. The Mount Dora Center for the Arts produces this art show every year. Stop by their art gallery and see their latest art exhibit on display. They are located at 138 East Fifth Avenue in the heart of Downtown Mt. Dora. For more information on this event please visit http://mountdoracenterforthearts.org/arts-festival/ .
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Sources of Information from the Mt. Dora Arts Festival. Photos courtesy by icflorida.com