The 64th annual Way’s Garden Art Show returned after last year’s COVID-19 cancellation, bringing a wide variety of artists of all mediums to the Garden, located at the corner of West Fourth and Maynard streets, on Sunday afternoon.
Every year, at the end of the show, one artist wins the Eve Archer or “People’s Choice” award, which is presented alongside a $100 gift certificate to Gold Leaf to frame their art piece or pieces.
This year, the award was given to Erma Jean Woodis, of Art by Erma Jean, who is an artist originally from Florida, but recently moved to the area. She creates realism paintings, portraits, murals, cards and more.
“I thank you all for making me feel welcome and appreciating my art,” she said. “It was a great show and it was nice to be a part of it.”
The award was created after the late Eve Archer, local artist, who has a longstanding history with the art show since 1956.
Many artists were at the Way’s Garden Art Show for the very first time and were not only excited to show their work, but to also meet and connect with other local artists.
Melissa Tarhovicky, Penn College graduate and Williamsport resident, was showing and selling her canvas paintings of nature and architecture, as a first time
“I’ve been an artist, doing art as a hobby for a very long time,” she said. “I like painting nature, it is so organic and perfect by itself, you don’t have to do anything to it.”
She had been creating art during the pandemic and stumbled upon the show and decided to show her work as a way to “meet the community”.
“Everybody is so kind, so inquisitive and supportive,” she said.
“It is really special…to get more involved in the local arts communities and connect with the local artists,” said Madison VanDuren, an artist out of Proctor.
She specializes in nature-inspired pieces from fish to plants and vegetation. She showed pieces painted on wood as well as signs and watercolor.
Locals could be seen smiling and walking around with friends, family members and even their furry companions.
“I really enjoyed the live music and the oil paintings of the city,” said Lain Shableski, of Linden. Their friend, Sarah Burke, of Williamsport, added that there was “such a diverse group of artists” and enjoyed many of the paintings that were in the garden.
In addition, friend Diane Comp, of Muncy and Debbie Rider, of Montoursville, “loved to see everything that people are capable of.”
“I was so excited and happy to be able to get out and see people and see the art and artists,” Rider said. “It is always a nice time. I personally love everything that people are creating.”
Rider stated that she comes to the Art Show every year.
In addition to the art, crowds could be seen enjoying Backhouse Cafe treats and coffee as well as the yard sale at the Thomas T. Taber Museum and the Strawberry Festival at Trinity Episcopal Church.
For more information please visit The Bald Eagle Art League on Facebook.
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