The Pocono Arts Council held an Art on Main Celebration throughout the town of Stroudsburg, PA on Saturday May 15th which they co sponsored with The Jacob Stroud Corporation. This day dedicated to the arts featured an artist reception for The PoconoArts annual Members' Exhibition at The ArtSpace Gallery, The 4th Annual "Fine Art" Parking Meter Competition, and PoconoArts Squared featuring fine art, crafts, and local non-profit organizations on Main Street and Courthouse Square. The event also included several Musicians and poets who performed throughout the town as well.
It was a wonderful day to be out as the art gods smiled upon the attendee with some bright and warm weather so they could enjoy walking along the streets of Stroudsburg unencumbered by the chilled, wet climate the area had experienced in recent days. This welcomed change was more indicative of the season as it marked the beginning of the area’s monthly excursions into the creative community through PoconoArts Squared and other events. The day also saw the opening of the new Main St. Art Gallery (whose work by Susanna Shap captivated the imagination) and Le Persil Bistro (whose menu created an appetite by just holding it prior to even glancing at the items) added to the event’s sensual delights.
While walking down the streets, I was overwhelmed by the friendly countenance of the vendors and musicians who lined the streets. Among the vendors who shared their creative endeavors were Margaret Benson of Just Me Pottery, JoAnn Stratakos of Mudworks Pottery, Ursula Pooley of Me Crazy Jewelry, Leslie Nieto of The Mud Place, Penny Ricco who presented her Painted Gypsy Jewels, Brad Sears of Brad Sears Fine Woodturning, Mariana Russo of Mariana’s Arts and Crafts, Patty the Poet whose words never fail to still the troubled soul, Windows of Art and Things Less Ordinary, and Artist John Kobek. These and others provided my eye with a multitude of visual delights as I explored each piece and learned from each artist and artisan the nature of their work.
Not only my eyes were treated throughout the day but my ears were as well. A bevy of sounds echoed throughout the town which included The Mountain Winds whose renditions of Classical Music delightfully filled the courthouse square, The Lost Ramblers who wondered around the town playing the type of bluegrass music that lead people home, Jesse and Kathy Green whose performance at Josephine's Fleur de Lis slowed the harried pace of those wishing to explore everything the event had to offered to a syncopated step, Guitarist Stan Stewart who played to those visiting the Yellow Moon Boutique, and (although I didn’t get a chance to see them, I‘m sure) the melodies of The SheilaMark Duo brought an enchanted end to the day (after all, they always do).
The highlight of the day was The Pocono Arts Council Members’ Show at The ArtSpace Gallery. Nearly 100 artists throughout Monroe and surrounding counties presented the best of their work in this juried show. The Jurors this year were Robert Cooke, George Thompson, and Emily Thompson. Gift certificates and other items were awarded to those who received First, Second, Third Prize recognition for their work as well as those receiving Honorable Mention Status in each Visual Art Discipline. I was not there for the awards ceremonies as I was engaged with some wonderful conversation on the streets.
However, I do have a list of award recipients and the endeavors that were chosen. So, here they are:
In the media of Oils, First Prize went to Jill Swersie, Second Prize went to Mary Hart, Third Prize went to James Gloria, and Honorable Mention went to Dee Huxter. In the media of Acrylics, First Prize went to Doug Gilbert, Second Prize went to Debra Franz, Third Prize went to Susan Bernadett Le Bel, and Honorable Mention went to Ka-Son Reeves. In the media of Watercolors, First Prize went to Paula George, Second Prize went to Joan Raushi, Third Prize went to Thomas Augusta, and Honorable Mention went to Shirley Epstein. In the media titled, “Works on Paper,” First Prize went to Mark Ciocca, Second Prize went to Michelle Neifert, Third Prize went to Derrick Cameron, and Honorable Mention went to Jessica Yusko. In the media of 3-D Fine Art, First Prize went to JoAnn Stratakos, Second Prize went to Brad Sears, Third Prize went to Susan Crowley, and Honorable Mention went to Ursula Pooley. In the media of Photography, First Prize went to Andrea Rollins Rimberg, Second Prize went to Jill Campbell, Third Prize went to Shane Izykowski, and Honorable Mention went to George Debronski. In the Mixed Media category, First Prize went to Nancy Bohm, Second Prize went to Judy Hankins, Third Prize went to Peter Ambush, and Honorable Mention went to Charles Hanson. In the category of “Wearable Art/Fiber,” First Prize went to Leslie Mulliken, Second Prize went to April Field, and Third Prize went to Pat Bruck. The Best of Show Award went to Lenore Fiore-Mills.
As mentioned earlier, the Members’ exhibition featured nearly 100 artists (99 to be exact). Many of these are friends I’ve become acquainted over the years and their work never fails to enhance my appreciation for what they do and to humbly learn more about myself. I wish I could mention them all in this article in order to give them the recognition they deserve. But, to do so would make the article too wordy (even for me) and I’m more than likely forget a name or two. Plus I have a tendency to misspell a name or two which I may have done enough of already. So, let me just say their work was wonderful. But, those of you who are reading this article don’t have to take my word for it. You can go down to the ArtSpace Gallery in Stroudsburg, PA to see for yourself as the exhibition continues until May 30th.
The Arts on Main Event also served as an Opportunity for The Forwardian Arts Society Photography Lovers’ Gathering to meet. I personally didn’t see many of our number there, but I’m sure you were. So, if you have any pictures you took during the day and would like to share them, please feel free to do so. Our next Photography Lovers Gathering will be during The 2nd Annual Pocono Raceway Festival will be held in Stroudsburg, PA Saturday June 5th. Please keep an eye out for the invitations I’ll be sending around that date. In the meantime, you’ll be able to find more of the photographs I took during the day at The Forwardian Arts Society Photography Lovers’ Gathering for 2010 Gallery at www.myspace.com/forwardian_arts.
The next events presented by The Pocono Arts Council will be “The Arts by Me Party” on Tuesday May 18th and “The PoconoArts Yard Sale” on June 12th and 13th. Please Contact The Pocono Arts Couincil at 570-476-4460 for more information.
The contact information of those mentioned in this article include The Pocono Arts Council at www.poconoarts.org, The Jacob Stroud Corp at www.stroudsburg.net, The Main St. Art Gallery at www.modernhouseart.com, Le Persil Bistro at email@example.com, Mudworks Pottery at www.mudworkspotterypa.com, Me Crazy Jewelry at www.mecrazy.com, The Mud Place at www.themudplace.com, Penny Ricco’s Painted Gypsy Jewels at www.Blogspot.com/paintedgypsyjewels, Brad Sears Fine Woodturning at www.turningarts.com, Mariana’s Arts and Crafts at www.marianarusso.webs.com, Windows of Art and Things Less Ordinary at www.togglebees.com, John Kobek at www.johnkolbek.com, Jesse and Kathy Green at www.jessegreen.com Josephine's Fleur de Lis at www.josephinesonmain.com, Stan Stewart at www.music4moment.com, The Yellow Moon Boutique at www.yellowmoonboutique.com, The SheilaMark Duo at www.sheilamarkproductions.com, James Gloria at www.tottsgap.com, Ka-Son Reeves at www.ihnigmuh.com, Thomas Augusta at www.thomasaugusta.com, Marcia Flammonde at www.marciaflammonde.com, Andrea Robbins-Rimberg at www.sculptureworks.biz, Shane Izykowski at www.myspace.com/shaneizykowski, and The Forwardian Arts Society at www.theforwardianartssociety.com.