To the editor:
Thanks to the many sponsors, volunteers and the artists who participated as well as the patrons who supported the arts, the fourth annual Paint the Beach plein air festival was a huge success.
We had a record number of artist registering and were at capacity to the disappointment of a few who waited too long. The kick-off at Nervous Nellies was well attended with only a few artists checking in on Tuesday. The venue was more roomy and the appetizers were great. And, several artists came back to the spot to paint later in the week.
The weather cooperated with artists .. no rain, but a bit gusty on occasion which only adds to the challenge of plein air. Most artists completed at least two pieces and delivered them to the tent on Friday. Judge John C. Terelak was impressed with the quality of the artwork, and he judged quickly. Our gala was beautiful and music was great with a new jazz group playing. Bud Nocerra did a great job of auctioning off the items and Gail passed a donations bucket around to earn even more for FMBAA projects. Prizes were awarded to talented artists with a nice array of first time winners as well. Congratulations to them all. Every artist I spoke to said they enjoyed the whole event and planned to enter again next year.
Our sales were up from last year with both the number of paintings and dollar amount. George will have the totals in his treasurers report.
I would like to especially thank my chairpersons: Kay Cowan, Kathryn Miller, Mary Chiakowsky, Avis Schmitz, Jennifer Manning, Mimi Little, Cheryl Fausel and, of course, George Buelow. Georgia Reinmuth from Fish-Tale Marina/Santini Marina Plaza handled the gala arrangements and much more and carried on as much as possible after her unfortunate accident...a real trooper and a genuine treasure.
The Paint the Beach event was sponsored by Fort Myers Beach Art Association, The Greater Fort Myers Beach Friends of the Arts, Santini Marina Plaza, Fish-Tale Marina and supported by the Town of Fort Myers Beach. We are especially thankful for the support of Al and Kathy Durrett.
Nervous Nellies provided the meet n' greet venue and food. Prizes were underwritten by Santini Marina Plaza, Fish-Tale Marina, Smokin Oyster Brewery, John & Jean Kakatsch, Edward Jones Investments, Judson Guerrilla Painter, Plein Air Magazine, Watercolor Magazine, Chartpak, and t-shirts were underwritten by The Beach Pub. Door Prizes were given by Esterra Spa and Salon and Hair, Etc. Auction items were donated by Mimi Little, Winsor Newton, Marriott Residence Inn, Capt. Scot Levis and Capt. Neil Eisner. Chamber president Bud Nocera was the auctioneer. Island Sandpaper gave us ads in their paper. Wyndham Gardens gave us two nights stay for the judge. Gavin's Ace Hardware gave us the nice goodie buckets and many businesses gave us discounts during the week. Truly Scrumptious provided the great breakfast on Friday morning that we all enjoyed.
We also would like to thank the press and Wink TV who gave us such great coverage before and during the event. All this support continues to allow the Fort Myers Beach Art Association to encourage and support the visual arts in the Town of Fort Myers Beach and we truly thank all who join with us in doing so.
Planning is underway for 2014 Paint the Beach, Nov. 3-9. Save the date!!!
2013 Paint the Beach Chairman
Fort Myers Beach Art Association