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Festival a treat for 5 senses

Beaux Arts on the Mountain serves up music, art, activities

Tamera Manzanares

Drawn by the energetic drumming of the New York Street Boys, the soulful serenades of Carrie Elkin and a 15-foot-tall puppet, visitors meandered through an array of attractions Saturday at the Beaux Arts on the Mountain festival.

Whether it was high-end jewelry, photography and other arts, or face painting, stilts and bocce ball, the event offered something for everyone.

“I love the art, constant entertainment and, of course, the car with the fish,” said Jean Baker who was visiting Steamboat from Springfield, Mo.

With more than 240 squirming rubber fish and lobsters that periodically broke into song, the “Sashimi Tabernacle Choir” Art Car was a popular attraction at the festival. But while the singing fish drew laughs and funny looks, Brodee Smith-Lawrence, 11, stood mesmerized by the “Lizard King” car.

“That one sings, but this one is just great,” said Smith-Lawrence of Steamboat, who liked the plethora of broken glass, coins and jewelry covering the car, which was created by a group of art students from Waltrip High School in Houston.

In addition to funky art cars, the festival featured colorfully painted scenes on sidewalks, as well as vendors’ blown glass, sculptures and paintings.

The festival is about creating an environment where people experience all mediums of art, said Nancy Kramer, executive director of the Steamboat Springs Arts Council.

In its second year, the art fair is growing with more people, vendors and attractions and is on its way to playing a substantial role in Steamboat’s cultural tourism, she said.

“We’re just kind of growing piece by piece, trying to set a template,” Kramer said.

By early afternoon, jewelry vendor Julie Johnson’s sales were good, and she expected more business to trickle down from the Steamboat Wine Festival, which helped attract art connoisseurs to the Beaux Arts events.

“It’s a great festival because they have all this other stuff, as well,” she said.

Russ Davis of Erie was among several vendors from outside Steamboat who displayed their wares at the fair. Business was rather slow in Davis’ tent, which featured his colorful landscape photography.

“It could be a little bigger,” he said about the fair, noting the good music was helpful in attracting people to the area.

Though Steamboat was a little far to travel for one day of events, Davis enjoyed the atmosphere and said he probably would return next year.

— To reach Tamera Manzanares call 871-4204 or e-mail tmanzanares@steamboatpilot.com


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