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Celebration held at 2nd Annual ARToberfest, Oct. 26

Local artists and their works are featured at ARToberfest 2019, this Saturday, October 26, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. The annual event will be held at the newly-created Turner Center Art Park, located at 605 N. Patterson Street, Valdosta. Valdosta Mayor John Gayle, along with Turner Center board members, staff and park sponsors, will cut the ribbon at 10 a.m., at the Art Park Pavilion, located in the center of the park.

We are excited to cut the ribbon on this new creative space in our community,” said Executive Director Sementha Mathews. “Thanks to many generous sponsors and the support of a visionary board of directors and Turner Center staff, we are able to utilize this space for outdoor learning, entertainment opportunities and a safe outdoor venue for life enrichment activities, thereby continuing to fulfill the mission of the Turner Center for the Arts for years to come.”

Art Park sponsors include The Price-Campbell Foundation, The Center for the Arts Guild, Citadel Construction, U.S. Navy Facilities Command, Georgia Power, Ace Electric, The Home Depot, Denzer Tree Surgeons, Reames Concrete, City Electric, Mike Scott Painting, Griffin Concrete, Signature Landscapes Inc., Lawn King Landscaping & Irrigation LLC, ASA Engineering & Surveying LLC, the City of Valdosta, South Georgia Rocks, Keep Lowndes Valdosta Beautiful, and all the volunteers who contributed time and muscle.

Held in observance of National Arts & Humanities Month, the fine arts festival celebrates the talent of local and regional artists and their contributions to our culture and community. Fine art will be displayed and sold on site, and several artist demonstrations are scheduled throughout the event. ARToberfest 2019 also features two local bands—2 River Station (10:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.) and Kenji Bolden Trio (12:45-2:45 p.m.)—as well as various food trucks and restaurants selling food, coffee and treats. A dance demonstration by Turner Center Hula Instructor Jan Gochenouer takes place from 1:30-1:45 p.m., and literary readings occur periodically throughout the event to celebrate local authors.

The first two pieces of art installed in the Art Park are by local artist Wilby Coleman. “Curlew Liftoff” is a 105-inch tall full-spread winged metal sculpture and is positioned to the left of the pavilion. “Baby the Rain Must Fall” is a 119-inch unique metal sculpture of clouds and faucets that has been installed to the right of the pavilion. The Turner Center will host an art mural contest in spring 2020 and plans to add more public art pieces to the park in the coming years.

Free parking is available at the event. Attendees are welcome to view the art on display in the main art galleries at 527 N. Patterson Street, and visit the information booth for a list of upcoming art classes and events. For more information, contact the Turner Center at 229.247.2787, visit, or connect with us on Facebook (@turnercenter), Twitter (@AHTurnerCenter) and Instagram (turnercenter).