Arts & Crafts Faire 2017 a success

Singer and reality TV star Chance Perez performs "The Star-Spangled Banner" at last weekend's Arts and Crafts Faire. Photo by Charles M. Kelly
The Seal Beach Animal Care Center bake sale booth raised $2,831 over the two day event. Photo by Charles M. Kelly

Well, with the dog days of summer drawing to a close, and school back in session, it is the perfect time to take a moment and appreciate the opportunity just to enjoy Seal Beach this past weekend, our local talent and its natural beauty.  As The 40th Annual Arts & Crafts Faire, which has been awarded the “Best of Seal Beach Gold” for Cultural Events, returned this year to Eisenhower Park, on Sept. 10 and 11 with a wide selection of finding beautiful, unique and hand-crafted items.  From specialty hats to high-end woodwork, jewelry, candles, bath products, air mobiles from soda cans, large format paintings and tiny canvases, there were items for everyone.

John Muir, the famous naturalist, and conservationist said in his book, “The Yosemite,” said, “Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul alike.”  Art and our gorgeous crafts bring some of that beauty into our lives and our homes.  Many people like to start their holiday shopping with the show.  Several people have asked members of the committee about various artists, commented with delight on the new logos, banners, posters and listings on-line and felt the excitement.

This year has over 105 arts and crafts vendors and, of course, the non-profits, all showcase their specialties for all to enjoy. Additionally, special thanks to Lisa Landau, Scott Newton, Ryan Zigenbusch, Rob Clark, Laura Ellsworth, Esther Kenyon, Dianna Showaker-Bangs, Tim Kelsey, David Nett, Chardy Lang, Ramona Kies, Barbara Wright, Seargent Mike Henderson, Joe Hardin and Mike Ezroj and of course Jessica Jacobs from the City Recreation Department, all of who are team leads and have brought this event up in energy and awareness by triple or more.

We had about twenty acts, all from local musical and vocal artists, many of whom you might know from our school district and had a special visit by Seal Beach native and recent winner of ABC’s “Boy Band” Chance Perez, who sung the National Anthem on Sunday morning to open the show.  Every City Council member, including Mayor Sandra Massa-Lavitt and Councilwoman Ellery Deatonn lead us in the Pledge of Allegiance on Sunday and Saturday, respectively.

John Osborne, of Alamitos Eye Care, a principal sponsor said, “look, music is a passion and so is engaging with our schools and the arts. We are proud to be part of such a great cultural event in Seal Beach.”

The Leos really stepped up and took on much of announcing as well as expanding the food offerings for artisans and the public with healthy salads and their traditional hotdogs brauts and sausages.  We are proud to showcase the talent of our local students in an art forum, the Peace Poster Contest, the Chalk Art lead by Jessica Jacobs and of course the musical entertainment.

Event organizers thanked all of their sponsors, especially the city of Seal Beach, Alamitos Eye Care, the Sun News as our official guidebook – which doubled in size this year and was a huge success, Republic Services for timely and effective trash support and our sister organization, the Chamber of Commerce which helped flyer the event at the Leisure World Expo.  Finally, one more shout out to Gino Nardo, who did a lot with signage, announcements with council and distributed flyers.  Thank you to all of the Lions and Leos who volunteered.  So far, it far exceed last year’s success.

Seth Eaker is president of the the Seal Beach Lions Club, co-chair of the Christmas Parade and chairman of the Arts & Crafts Faire.  Both of his parents are artists and his father was the chairman of the visual art department at the University of South Florida and started the first joint public/private venture for research in art, GraphicStudio.  His mother is an avid painter and both of his parents continue their practice of artistic expression today.