Christine Loewe, executive director of the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center, makes flower crowns with Theo Miller in this file photo. The annual celebration will be on Saturday.

Christine Loewe, executive director of the Port Angeles Fine Arts Center, makes flower crowns with Theo Miller in this file photo. The annual celebration will be on Saturday.

Outdoor art festival to celebrate Summer Solstice

Live music, art stations at Webster’s Woods

PORT ANGELES — The Port Angeles Fine Arts Center will host the Summertide Solstice Art Festival on Saturday with art, music and poetry.

The family-friendly celebration on the longest day of the year will be from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the center, 1203 E. Laudidsen Blvd., to mark the summer solstice and salute new artwork and poetry to Webster’s Woods Sculpture Park.

Admission is free but donations will be welcome.

“Summertide is one of three annual outdoor arts festivals that we host at the art center, and we just love putting on this event,” said Christine Loewe, Port Angeles Fine Arts Center executive director.

“It feels like the perfect way to launch into summer, bringing our community together to celebrate the beauty of Webster’s Woods.

“With new sculptures, poetry in the park and fun activities for all ages, we think there will be something of interest for everyone.”

Live music, lawn games, nature art stations, poetry readings, self-guided park tours and poetry walks, and local food and drink vendors are planned.

“New Growth” in Webster’s Woods features 10 new artwork installations. They join more than 100 existing works of art nestled into 5 acres of rugged second-growth forest.

This year’s artists are William Frick, Lucy Harvey-Smith, Bob Houser, Steve Jensen, Quinton Merida, Karen Rudd, Karen Sixkiller, Jude Stigler, Sarah Jane and Anna Kruse.

A selection of 18 original poems also will be on display on signs throughout the woods as a part of the second year of Poetry in the Park.

Heidi Hansen and Linda Myers from the Olympic Peninsula Authors group curated this year’s literary entries.

Participating authors are Geoff Rimositis, Mary-Alice Boulter, Elsa Theismann, Mindy Gelder, Nancy Fowler, Kelli Russell Agodon, Tess Gallagher, Joan Enoch, Laura Garrard, Anna Maria Vag, Kathleen Kennedy, Dianne Knox, Eva McGinnis, Daniel Huraksh McMannis, Suzan Brawnlyn and Chris Kleinfelter.

Visitors will be able to meet the authors and hear live readings at a Poetry Café in the gallery courtyard from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m., or enjoy a self-guided poetry walk through the park.

“The newly installed artworks for Summertide always have a renewing effect on Webster’s Woods and this year is no exception,” said Sarah Jane, Port Angeles Fine Arts Center gallery and program director.

“It has also been wonderful to see the Poetry in the Park program grow so much in just one year, from seven last year to 18 this year,” she said.

“I am particularly moved by the breadth of this year’s lineups, which include new pieces by luminaries such as poet Tess Gallagher and sculptor Steve Jensen as well as stunning additions from some of the youngest artists I’ve been privileged to work with, including installation artist Jude Stigler and poet Elsa Theismann — both age 11 — who prove that artists of all ages have valuable contributions to share.”

The “Blooming Artists” exhibition of young artists’ work is in the gallery.

Hands-on nature art stations for printmaking and creating solstice crowns will be available.

Live music is planned on the meadow stage throughout the event.

Jason Mogi of the band Deadwood Revival will play folk and Americana with his banjo and guitar from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. Songslinger Jack Dwyer will return with friends for the 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. slot and will close out the festival with a solo performance from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Attendees are encouraged to bring blankets or lawn chairs and listen to the performances down in the meadow, or to enjoy the melodies wafting throughout the park as they explore the new artwork or make art at one of the hands-on stations.

Food and drinks will be available for purchase from local vendors Fogtown Coffee, Pacific Pantry and the Whiskey Wagon.

Masks are optional for visitors both in the Esther Webster Gallery and Webster’s Woods.

Capacity in the gallery will be limited to encourage social distancing while inside.

For more about Summertide, see pafac.org.

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