Artfest to make for lively weekend


Some of the people wandering around the Colorado Artfest at Castle Rock in 2012 had the opportunity to see and buy tons of art from local and out-of-state artists. But it was that hamburger or hot dog they bought that made the difference in 27 kids' lives in Haiti.

Now, the Calvary Chapel youth group, based in Castle Rock, which spent two days at the barbecue grill at the 2012 Artfest and raised $5,000 — enough to enable 27 kids to have a year's school, uniforms, materials and a meal a day — plan to do the same thing at the upcoming Sept. 7 and 8 Artfest. But they hope to make more to help more kids.

“They're precious little kids,” said Chris Kroger, a Calvary Chapel pastor who has spent time in Haiti helping, with different funds, to build a school there. And had moments weeping because of his huge wish to be able to bring them all home.

So, in addition to seeing art from about 180 artists — about 45 percent from other states — there are other types of opportunities.

Kid artists will be able to create artwork at the Imagination Zone, sponsored by Castle Rock Adventist Hospital. The hospital will take their work, make get-well cards and use them at the hospital.

On Sept. 7, there will be a high school chalk-art competition, sponsored by Lone Tree's Sky Ridge Medical Center. It's expected some kids will take hours that morning to create, and then the awards ceremony will be at 3 p.m.

Pam Ridler, president of the Castle Rock Chamber of Commerce, which sponsors the Artfest, said the biggest thing they're seeing is that the quality of art at the juried Artfest has “substantially raised to different level, more so in the last five years, six years.” Only about half of the artists that apply get in.

There's also a diversity of art, in type and price range. She said prices will range from about $25 to $13,000. One Florida painter, specializing in wildlife and recognized by the Audubon Society, will be at the Artfest — as will the artist who created the large bronze sculpture of horse and cowboy at the corner of Fifth and Gilbert streets.

Among the live entertainment, Phat Daddy, a rhythm and blues band that draws a large crowd, will be back.

Ridler said the event draws about 20,ooo to 25,000 people and has a “very good reputation.”

The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sept. 7, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 8, in the parking lots of Castle Rock Town Hall, 100 Wilcox St., and Philip S. Miller Library, 100 S. Wilcox St.

Tickets are $5 for adults, $3 for seniors over 60, and kids under 12 are free.

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