Here we are, at the end of another March. The working residents of southwest Florida have had a busy season and most are downright tired. (Me? I’m exhausted.) Part time residents are planning their spring departures. Soon, more visitors will be leaving than arriving.
It’s a time when year-rounders dare to dream of how to wile away the upcoming long summer days and warm summer nights. For you short-timers it’s the home-stretch, the last chance café, the final innings.
Right before us is one of our two precious “shoulder seasons” (April/May and October/November). Roads are a little less congested, time a bit freer, weather lovely, and still good stuff going on – no boarding-up of windows just yet. What to do…what to do…how will you make these weeks fulfilling?
Well I, of course, am bursting with suggestions. And they all involve special events in areas with a high concentration, and a great variety, of local art; also some excellent opportunities to buy Florida art by Florida artists.
Have you shelved your plans to take up painting? Call artist Betty Newman now to reserve a seat at one of the weekly Palette Parties at the Artist Colony at the Esplanade on Marco Island. Bring your friends or meet new ones, bring your favorite party beverage and snack, Palette Parties supplies therest. Follow the lead artist‘s recreation, step-by step, of an already completed painting, while other artists stand-by to coach and encourage. They supply the paints, canvas, brushes, even aprons – everything you need to complete your own masterpiece in a 2-hour session. 239.784.4436.
Also at the Artist Colony is the Last Wednesday ArtWalk (last Wednesday of every month) April 25, 5-8PM. Enjoy art, artists, live music and creative refreshments. www.marcoislandartistcolony. com
In Naples, the Artists Alliance in the Shirley St. neighborhood (off Pine Ridge Rd.) boasts a concentration of studio-galleries representing over 60 artists. Plan on attending their Underground Art Wednesday on April 4, 6-9PM. 239.821.1061
In the Crayton Cove area, near the Naples city docks, Art After Dark, April 14, 6-9PM, is a wonderful stroll through some of Naples’ best independent galleries. Make sure to stop by Phil Fisher Gallery, 810 12 Ave. South, and experience the spectacular batiks formed by Natalie Guess along with the exuberant watercolor paintings by Phil Fisher. 239.403.8393
Let go. Let loose. Have a glass of wine. Tell `em Tara sent you.
Tara O’Neill, a lifelong artist, has been an area resident since 1967. She holds Bachelors’ Degrees in Fine Arts and English from the University of South Florida, and currently has a studio-gallery at the Artist Colony at the Esplanade on Marco Island. Contact her through www.tarao gallery.com