Brookfield’s Fine Arts Festival celebrates its fourth anniversary this weekend, but in a new venue and with an added attraction.
The Chamber of Commerce-sponsored arts festival will be held Saturday, Oct. 5 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the south end of Kiwanis Park, just east of Brookfield Village Hall at 8820 Brookfield Ave.
More than 20 artists will be displaying and selling their works of art — from ceramics to photographs, paintings, drawings, jewelry and more.
“This year the goal was to build an artists network and place the Brookfield Arts Festival on the map for artists,” said Abby Brennan, owner of Brennan Massage and Spa, who is the event’s lead organizer.
To help her build that network, Brennan enlisted two artists who have participated in the event in past years — photography Timothy Johnson and jewelry maker Julie Matos. The two artists designed a postcard, which they have been passing out to artists during the summer art fair season.
The result is that the Brookfield event has attracted some higher-caliber artists in 2013 who are looking to close out the fair season in Brookfield.
“It’s nice to have something nearby in the community,” said Johnson, a LaGrange resident who spent 25 years as a commercial studio photographer before switching to fine art photography full time eight years ago.
Johnson specializes in nature/landscape photography from locales across the country, national parks in particular. He first hooked up with the Brookfield Arts Festival back in 2011 because it was close by and inexpensive to enter. His work was a hit at that fest.
“For a small community fair, I did great,” said Johnson who does a dozen or so art fairs per year.
Brennan said one of the goals for the 2013 festival was bringing in better-quality art.
“This year we made higher standards for applicants,” said Brennan. “With the artists we have involved this year, it’s a very good show and has work that matches what other festivals are able to pull off.
“What we’re shooting for is to be on the map, to be something the community continually looks forward to.”
This is the first year the arts festival won’t be on Grand Boulevard. The switch to the park was intentional, said Brennan, as a way to make it a more cohesive event.
“The park setting is a little more quaint and it’s easier to set up,” said Brennan. “It was nice to have on the street, but it was harder to give it that effect. It felt a little empty. It’s more comfortable and user-friendly to have it in the park.”
During the morning, the arts festival may be able to cross-pollinate with the crowd going to Brookfield Farmers Market in the village hall parking lot.
2nd Annual Fall Fest
Then, beginning at noon, the chamber’s Family Fall Fest will kick off in Kiwanis Park proper. That event will run until 6 p.m.
It’s the second year for the Family Fall Fest, which got off to a rather rainy start during its inaugural year in 2012. Activities include free music lessons from the folks at A Sound Education and lessons for the younger folks from Miss Clara’s Mini-Musicians. The Moms of Brookfield (The MOB) will host a free family photo booth, while House Pros Inspections will host face painting.
The Brookfield Little League will be selling hot dogs, burgers and bratwurst, while the Brookfield VFW will be selling potato pancakes and pork chops on a stick. The Brookfield Chamber of Commerce will be selling microbrew beers, wine and water.
Live music includes Happy 99 from 1 to 2 p.m., Double Identity from 3 to 4 p.m. and Far-Sighted from 5 to 6 p.m.
And Beautify Brookfield, the fundraising arm of the Brookfield Beautification Commission, will host a rubber duck race at 2 p.m. For a $5 donation, participants have chance to win up to $500 if their duck crosses the finish line first. Ducks will be launched from the Washington Avenue bridge at 2 p.m. and float toward the finish line near village hall.
Proceeds will go to support the mission of the Beautification Commission.