I use a feature on my mobile phone to make notes. The thing is I rarely refer back to them, even when I email them to myself as reminders. But, when I did look over a smattering from the past week my notes told a story. I had been in the throes of orchestrating the Haliburton Art and Craft Festival, the largest outdoor event in Haliburton County. With its many parts and players, my notes had a definite rhythm! Here is one short reminder to myself from three days before the festival opened:
Put out barricade, pick up signs from Minden; FLAGS! Metally Twisted and A Twist of Metal are separate people; red tent broken legs; pottie delivery (TP!!!); survey water lines, investigate outdoor hose bib; outdoor couches? Put out/bring in daily? Water bottle re-fill station; parking area; vests! Caution tape; signs! Earth Loom lavender… sticks.
Our organizing committee wanted the return of the Haliburton Art and Craft Festival to feel open and welcoming, a space where everyone can shine even under cloudy skies. One thing we couldn’t control was the weather but, Mother Nature spared us once again and, as many of us know by now, nothing stops Haliburton from enjoying a good art festival! This year Razzamataz Kids’ Shows! introduced an element unlike anything we’ve seen before, bringing us two performance artists – Les Oiseaux! A 12-foot tall, extremely curious, flamboyant, yet gentle, and its mystical chanteuse enchanted one and all. (If you find any magic dust in the Head Lake Park you will know where it came from!)
Did you miss seeing cars and vans behind booths? Part of our big comeback plan for the festival was to reduce the number of cars in the public areas of the festival. Vendors were happy to cooperate and the resulting open space, buskers, artful booths, the playground, participatory activities and new pathways lent an “art fair” feel to the weekend. Did you visit the public toilets at the Welcome Centre? What a difference having well-appointed facilities made to our visitors. (Thank you to Dysart et al and Haliburton Rotary).
Head Lake Park is a community resource and green space that replaced a former lumber mill site and rail yard. A bustling lumber town dating back to the late-1800s, Haliburton Village is on the move.
“During the council meeting on Dec. 15, 2020, council approved the Head Lake Rotary Park Master Plan as presented by Basterfield & Associates Inc. This plan, which could take 10 to 20 years to fully implement, allows the municipality to act quickly and apply for funding opportunities as they become available. You can see it at www.dysartetal.ca/en/news/head-lake-park-master-plan.aspx,” reads from Dysart’s website.
About 4,500 people attended the Haliburton Art and Craft Festival from July 22 to 24. If you were a visitor, volunteer or a vendor, a performer, a busker, a shopper, a maker, a gallery goer, a painter or musician YOU contributed to the successful return of one of cottage country’s best loved art festivals! Thank you! See you in 2023 on the fourth weekend of July, just like always.
Submitted by Laurie Jones,
Executive Director/Curator, Rails End Gallery and Arts Centre