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Art Goes Social

This year’s Social Canvas is coming! It will be held Sunday, May 6th on the Riverwalk in front of the Morris Museum of Art. Check out last year’s blog about Social Canvas:

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Last weekend the Morris Museum of Art held its third annual Social Canvas event. The first thing you need to know about Social Canvas is that it is AWESOME! The second thing you need to know about Social Canvas is that it is FREE!

So, WHAT IS SOCIAL CANVAS?

Sound like fun? It should! If you have kids, they will adore all the art projects that they can be a part of; including painting on the massive canvas that’s appropriately titled the “Social Canvas!”

WHAT DO YOU DO?

If you’re like me and going alone or with a friend, there’s plenty for you to enjoy. Artists. Live music. Breakdancing. The Artisan Market. Art Projects. Did I mention the live music and breakdancing?

At the Artisan Market you can find anything from hand sculpted ceramic bowls, vases and sculptures to handmade jewlery and accesories, local photography and even hand sewn clothing. After I made my rounds and spent my hard earned money on FABULOUS finds in the market, I headed over to one of the art projects and tried my (decidedly unartistic) hand at screen poster making.

          

For those of you who have never tried screening a poster, it’s a step by step process-NOT at all like what I’m used to, which is creating a digital file and hitting “print.” The result is a beautiful, layered print with lots of bright colors and TONS of personality.

While waiting on each layer of my poster to dry, I sat under a tree with a sweet tea and listened to The Favors. I’d never heard them play before, although I have seen where they are frequent guests at Sky City- a local bar and indie music venue. Two words to describe them…smooth and catchy!

At the end of the day, I felt….well, sunburned (next year I’ll bring sunscreen) but also incredibly satisfied. For a self-admitted NON-artist, I had created an awesome poster, watched as local artists created paintings inspired by the atmosphere, listened to great music, boosted the local economy and left with a bag full of one-of-a-kind jewelry and art.

I grabbed a free sticker on the way out that says “I Experienced Art at the Morris.” Until you do something like this, you don’t really appreciate that phrase, so GO! EXPERIENCE! The Morris puts on events all the time-ranging from independent films, workshops, readings,  even cooking demos! It is always reasonably priced or free and most definitely worth a visit!

Morris Museum of Art

1 Tenth St.

Augusta, GA 30901

Tire City Potters

Downtown Augusta has lots of little hidden gems, just waiting for you to stumble up on them. Tire City Potters, is one such gem!  Situated in an old garage, this pottery studio is a lot more than meets the eye.  If you’re enjoying a First Friday downtown or strolling down 10th Street after a delicious meal at the Rooster’s Beak or Bee’s Knees you might find yourself wandering into Tire City.

When the large garage doors are open, the studio is quite inviting.  Earlier this week, I was enjoying Taco Tuesday at the Rooster’s Beak across the street. Since the weather was so nice we sat outside while we ate and watched the crowd at the pottery studio.  Our out of town guests were quite curious, so after supper we decided to pop in and see what we could find.

These skull and crossbones mugs would make a perfect gift for even the most macho coffee aficionado!

There is quite a wide variety of pottery from vases and platters, to business card holders and tea kettles.

My favorite were these tiny pinch pots!  I bought a few for Christmas gifts, as they would be perfect finger bowls, salt keepers, or jewelry holders!

If you are downtown and the lights are on, stop by and check out Tire City, you might just find something amazing!

Tire City Potters
210 B 10th Street
Augusta, GA 30901
(706) 294-3871

Hispanic Festival

Note: This blog was written last year after the Hispanic Festival. The 2011 Hispanic Festival is this weekend – October 8th & 9th.

Augusta is home to many different festivals, celebrating all sorts of different things. Each year in the fall the Hispanic American Cultural Association in Augusta hosts a weekend-long festival celebrating Hispanic heritage in Augusta.  A couple of weeks ago I decided to check out the Hispanic Festival. I love festivals, especially all the food!  This year there were food vendors from fifteen different Spanish speaking countries.

Everything smelled so good that it was hard to choose what to eat!  There were also plenty of choices for refreshments like pina coladas and fresh squeezed lemonade from the lemon truck.

The Augusta Common is always really lively during festivals and events like First Friday. There were a ton of folks enjoying the day along with the fantastic food and music.  I also found a fantastic pair of earrings for $5 at one of the vendors’ tents!

I had such a great time that I’m looking forward to the Hispanic Festival again next year!

Arts in the Heart of Augusta

(Note: This blog was originally posted November 5, 2010. It has been updated with information about Arts in the Heart 2011)

Arts in the Heart of Augusta is one of my favorite festivals.  I look forward to attending each year.  Every year a different country is showcased and this year it was Brazil.

This year I was on a mission!  My neighbor – Mr. Melvin has lived in Augusta all his life but has never been to Arts in the Heart!  I couldn’t believe it so I invited him to come along with me, my mom and youngest son.  Of course, he was surprised by how big of an event it was.

Obviously food is abundant with all the different countries represented.  There are over 15 different countries represented in the world food bazaar each year.  Mr. Melvin had no trouble deciding what to eat though.  He went straight for Jamaica.

I ate a Meat Patty from Jamaica on Friday  so I was headed for the Fish and Chips from Ireland on Saturday.

We walked around and checked out the  arts and crafts, and  jewelry before we stopped at a couple of the stages.

Now, there was a time when I would sit at the Children’s stage or the Family stage and just watch all the different groups perform.

If I got a good seat up front I wasn’t moving!  Since our group was mixed this year I thought we should keep it moving and get a little more variety.

I don’t think I will have to convince Mr. Melvin to go next year.  As a matter of fact he already told me he was going to bring his stadium chair next time!

Arts in the Heart of Augusta 2011: September 16 – 18

Friday, Sept 16: 5 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Saturday, Sept 17: 11 a.m. – 9 p.m.

Sunday, Sept 18: 12 noon – 7 p.m.

Featured Culture for 2011: GREECE

Weekend Badges: $7 at the gate   //  $5 in advance (available at all SRP locations) 

Weekend Whirl

“Whirl (N): a rapid round of events, affairs, etc”

We all need a little mini-vacation sometimes and a weekend whirl to freshen things up is always fun. So whether your planning a weekend trip to visit Augusta or looking to show visiting friends and family a good time, this is a fun itinerary that has a few of my favorite things to do.

Friday Night

Get a taste of Augusta’s downtown dining scene. There’s something to please everyone’s taste buds. Feeling adventurous? Try Bees Knees – this tapas style restaurant adds Southern flair to international dishes.

Get a shot of Augusta’s downtown nightlife. While you’re out and about, enjoy live Indie bands, bar bands, and drink specials downtown. A few of my favorite hot spots are Sky City, Soul Bar, Metro Pub and Stillwater Taproom.

   If you’re in town the first Friday of the month, go and enjoy the First Friday festival in the Augusta Commons area. It’s one of my favorite things to do on a Friday night. You’ll find live performances, music, art, vintage cars, fair food and more. Many of the downtown businesses host special First Friday events as well.

Saturday

Get a look at the local market. Take advantage of the cool morning weather and stroll down to the Saturday Market on the River. Grab a freshly roasted and brewed cup of coffee and some locally grown fruit to snack on for a light breakfast while you peruse the work of local artists and are serenaded by local jazz musicians.

Get some grub. Since you had a light breakfast, grab a good lunch—there are lots of cafes and restaurants to choose from. One of my favorite lunch spots is New Moon Café. They offer a good variety of soups, sandwiches and Panini’s that are made with fresh, and mostly local, ingredients.

Get on a trolley. Hop on the Lady Liberty trolley for the Saturday Historic Trolley Tour. Hear the legend of the Haunted Pillar and Civil War stories. Learn about the bones in the Old Medical College basement and a rambunctious boy who grew up in Augusta and became a U.S. President. Tour historic downtown and get a feel for all the unique shops and restaurants that you want to visit and more! Sound like fun? Make sure you call ahead  (706-724-4067) and make reservations at least 24 hours in advance.

Get a glimpse of nature. Rent a canoe, pontoon boat, or jetski from the Riverwalk Marina before setting off for a self-guided nature cruise down the beautiful Savannah River. If you prefer to hand over the captain’s hat, try an Augusta Canal Cruise so you can just sit back, relax and enjoy the ride.

Get some seafood. Before you head out for a night on the town, stop by Rinehart’s Oyster Bar for a “beyond casual” experience and enjoy fresh, simple seafood. My favorite thing on the menu is their fresh oysters, of course!

Get your groove on. A short drive down the road from Rinehart’s, you’ll find the Country Club Dance Hall and Saloon. Grab a friend and hit the dance floor. If you’re feelin’ lucky, go try and grab a balloon during the balloon drop and see if you’ve won a prize!

Sunday

Get to sleep late. After a late night, if you’re like me, you’ll want to sleep in a little. But don’t worry, you can still make it in time to enjoy “Augusta’s Best Sunday Brunch” at the Partridge Inn. Cheesy grits, bacon, biscuits and gravy, omelets, muffins, fresh fruit…you name it, they’ve got it!

Get a piece of Southern art. Take some time to explore the Morris Museum of Art. It’s the first museum that is dedicated to Southern art and works of Southern artists. Admission into the Morris is free on Sundays.

Get something to take home with you. I never leave someplace without doing a little shopping first. Augusta has tons of cool shops for you to check out. Downtown you can hit Artists Row—a group of galleries and studios that sell local art and hand-made jewelry, The Book Tavern—a little bookstore packed full of new, used and rare books, Vintage Ooollee—a vintage clothing and accessories boutique, and any of the quirky antique shops—my favorite thing about antique shops is you never know what you’ll find!  

Looking for someplace to stay? Check out our hotel listings to see which Augusta hotel best fits your style and budget.

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