I try to post fairly consistently.
Cause I have a lot to say!
I missed last Thursday because….I dropped a screw inside my sewing machine while I was cleaning it out. Couldn’t get it. Tried magnets, tweezers…. (It probably didn’t help when I picked it up and shook it.) That was the morning that the 44th Annual Homosassa Arts, Crafts, and Seafood Festival started. And I knew that there was no way that I’d be getting that sewing machine to the local quilt shop so they could pull that screw out for me. (Exactly a week later, I did get to the quilt shop and in a matter of minutes they had that machine apart and the screw removed.)
Now….let me tell you about the festival.
The Homosassa Arts, Crafts, and Seafood Festival is run by the Homosassa Civic Club and it is always the second weekend in November. All proceeds go back to the community–scholarships, youth groups, veterans, and more.
Terry and I live about a mile from the festival grounds. When Terry retired full-time, we volunteered for the event in 2015. It was quite an eye-opening experience. There were good things. But there were a lot of bad things. Most of the food was deep-fried, the art was pretty bad, a lot of the crafts were straight from China, volunteers were few, parking was chaos.
My sister, Ellen Snyder, is a water color artist. She and my niece Michelle spent several years working on the art show circuit throughout the country. Michelle stopped by the festival that year to check things out and made the comment that this used to be a fine arts show and now it was just a flea market. Ouch!
Terry and I both believe that if there is a problem, there is a solution. And when someone says, that’s the way we have always done it. Terry always responds, Why?
In 2016, Terry became the president of the Homosassa Civic Club and the chairperson of the festival. I was his assistant (and the first lady). That year we did the advertising, the raffles, t-shirts, entertainment, photography, managed the volunteers, graphic design, the websites, social media…. Just about the only thing we didn’t run was the Arts and Crafts and the food vendors. And we worked very closely with those committees in the attempt to root out the “flea market” side.
2018 was Terry’s third year as chairperson. And we had over 70 volunteers–pretty good for a small community that only has 110 members in the civic club! Many of them took on very difficult jobs. Last year we had a new civic club member volunteer to do the advertising and a friend took over the raffles. Another member with catering experience is now on the food vendor team. This year a professional musician stepped up to run the entertainment and starting next year we have graphic artist friends that are taking over the t-shirts.
I’ll still do the photography, the websites, and the social media. That’s what I’m good at. Terry will be organizing and managing.
This year we were over-sold on artists, crafters, and food vendors. There’s still deep fried food but there are also healthy alternatives! A far cry from what the event was in 2015.
There are still issues. But the festival will keep getting better as Terry and his crew of volunteers continue to fine tune every little detail.