Fiber Arts Show
to feature unusual talent
will serve as kickoff event for
Madison Main St.s Fourth Fridays
(April 2012) The kickoff for Madison Main Street
Programs 2012 series of events will begin in April with the return
of the popular Fourth Friday Art Jam and Shop Hop and the introduction
of a new competition that organizers hope will soon become an annual
During the fourth Friday of each month, downtown Madison businesses
are encouraged to stay open later, with many keeping their doors open
until 8 p.m. Main Street Program members also hire local musicians,
frequently guitar or saxophone players, to be positioned up and down
Main Street adding to the festive air.
Past years events have included artisans setting
up in front of businesses, and some stores will bring in special guests
for demonstrations. Main Street Program President and Art Club Treasurer
Bob Ems describes the Fourth Friday events as kind of like a downtown
In coordination with the April Fourth Friday program, the Madison Art
Club will play host to its Fabulous Fiber competition for fiber arts.
Weve toyed with the notion of having a quilt show,
says Ems, noting the popularity of quilts in the area.
However, Art Club members realized that there were already several quilt
shows in the region and wanted to do something a little different. So
they decided to expand the show to include other aspects of fiber arts
and have devised a class list of six categories for their show. In addition
to quilts, competitors are also invited to enter yarn works, needlework,
wearable art, and rugs/tapestries. There will also be a special miscellaneous
class for those works that do not fit into the other categories. The
entry fee is $15 and $50 prizes will be awarded in the different categories.
A lot of people tell us they really like the idea, notes
Ems and organizers hope that this interest will translate into several
entries. While the competition will be limited to works that entrants
have produced themselves, collectors are also encouraged to contact
the gallery about the possibility of displaying their special items
such as antique or family quilts.
Community members are invited to stop by the opening reception on April
27 between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. The show will also be available for viewing
from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, April 28; and from noon to 4 p.m. Sunday,
April 29. The reception will also offer a bit of a preview of the coffee
shop that is soon to open in the art gallery. Ems hopes that the shop
will encourage people to hang out and foster a more
relaxed environment where people come in, grab a coffee and wander
around and look at the art.
This idea of getting people out and enjoying downtown is central to
the mission of Main Street.
Program Director Beth Black explains that the organization serves as
a branch of the National Trust and encourages revitalization of downtown
and the preservation of its historic buildings. The organization recognizes
the practicalities of preservation and Black points out that increased
traffic and revenue at downtown stores is an integral part to keeping
the buildings and storefronts in good shape.
By supporting programs that get people out and about downtown, it gives
the business owners the financial opportunity to keep their buildings
restored, she said.
One of the ways that Main Street Program members hope to encourage an
awareness of downtown businesses and encourage traffic at area shops
is through a new Buy Local advertising campaign. Black said
she hopes that the billboards, print and radio ads and videos will encourage
residents to think of heading downtown rather than traveling to other
cities for shopping and entertainment.
Ems believes that the Madison Main Street Program is important to the
community because the economic viability of downtown is absolutely
vital to Madison.
He explains that, The reason people locate businesses here or
expand businesses here is because of the quality of life thats
the only reason were competitive. Quality of life hinges on historic
district and historic downtown.
For a Fabulous Fiber entry form or to get
more details on the contest, stop by Art on Main at 309 W. Main St.,
Madison. Or call (812) 255-2923. Entries must be received no later than
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