Just when most people thought the outdoor festival season was over, several local artists and community members in Brookfield are gearing up for a yearly favorite festival and shopping opportunity — the ninth annual Brookfield Fine Arts Festival.
Sponsored by the Brookfield Chamber of Commerce, 35 artists specializing in media including painting, pottery, photography, jewelry and fiber arts will flock to Kiwanis Park, 8820 Brookfield Ave., from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. this Saturday, Sept. 22, curating a one-stop art shop.
Billed as “a local celebration of the arts,” the event will boast 10 more artists than last year — a point of pride for Abby Brennan, event coordinator for the program and owner of Brookfield’s Brennan Massage and Spa.
“One thing that is really awesome about this year is the amount of artists we have had apply,” Brennan said. “The art is really great as well — very professionally done and unique. I think the community will be really impressed.”
Back for year two of showcasing mugs, plates and sculptural objects will be Brookfield potter Shannon Roman Gosciejew.
“My work features thoughtful functional design with layered imagery hand-painted onto each piece,” she said. “Sometimes, I will also layer vintage or custom decals.”
As the main organizer for the event for the last several years, Brennan said another thing to take note of this year is the larger number of painters showcasing their work.
“I love that we have been seeing so many more painters join the show,” she said. “In the beginning, it was always hard to find painters, and now, we have quite a few.”
Like last year, a craft beer station and food trucks will give guests the chance to grab lunch, and musicians from the Riverside Brookfield High School jazz ensemble, Brookfield’s A Sound Education music school and other local bands will provide an easy-listening soundtrack.
Also returning is the annual duck race down Salt Creek. For $5, participants will race rubber ducks for a chance at a cash prize. Ducks can be purchased at First National Bank of Brookfield, the Brookfield Public Library, or the fest.
And, the Chalk the Walk sidewalk art contest is back from noon to 2 p.m. for adults 18 and older to showcase their drawing skills. Individuals interested in signing up can contact Brennan at (708) 255-5335
Overall, Brennan and Gosciejew both agree the event will be worthwhile for people to check out.
“[Locals should come] because of the quality of fine art and the large number of artists we have this year — lots of variety,” Brennan said.
“This event allows you to create a connection with the artist, and not just buy something pretty to hang up,” Gosciejew said. “Even if you aren’t looking to buy anything, [patrons can] look at different things you won’t see anywhere else and have a dialogue with your neighbors.”