One of Englewood’s favorite springtime celebrations will be taking place March 30-31, on W. Dearborn St., in Olde Englewood Village.

In addition to over one hundred art displays, the 38th Annual Spring Fine Arts Festival will be offering live music, and many new and diverse vendors. Local shops and restaurants will stay open for business throughout the two-day weekend, and free parking is available along nearby streets. Although admission is free Rotary Club of Englewood sponsors are requesting a two dollar entrance donation. Last year the club, a 501 ©(3) organization, awarded over $40,000 in scholarships to support area youth activities and literacy campaigns.

Peter R. Gerbert, this year’s award winning featured artist, created “Swallowtails before the Storm”, a theme masterpiece that will be displayed for sale during the show along with prints and other examples of his work. Gerbert’s acrylic paintings, all based on real-life wilderness exploration, depict wildlife in their natural habitats with realistic three dimensional detail. To achieve depth and realism he skillfully works with texture washes and thick layers of acrylic paint. His limited edition prints are currently being displayed and sold in over one-hundred art galleries and frame shops throughout Florida. Gerbert’s artwork had been featured on the coverer of “Audubon Florida Naturalist” magazine and in almost every issue of “Florida Fish and Wildlife News” since 1997.

Artistic creations at the festival will include handmade fine jewelry, glass art, watercolor, acrylic, oil and pastel paintings, framed photographs, pottery and ceramics, wood, metal or glass sculptures, and whimsical mixed media. Participants for this year’s juried show include the following returning artists: potter, Tom Chamberlain and metal sculptor, Al DeLavega, New artists include Jennifer Peck, mixed media painter, and Amy Gmelin, concrete sculptor.

Mixed media artist, Jennifer Peck, who has a BA degree in fine arts from the University of Colorado, exhibits her work in galleries and art festivals throughout the state. She has been featured in editorials and her work displayed on the cover of “The Islander” magazine. Using a background of acrylic paint topped with handmade metallic or sparkly paper, Peck fashions imaginative and whimsical paintings.

“The paper brings everything to life,” remarks Peck, who often adds pen drawings to the paper. Her colorful, textured work celebrates coastal living and life at the beach.

Amy Lennard Gmelin, a graduate of the University of Florida, resides in New Port Richey. Her award-winning work has been widely exhibited in galleries and private collections.

“I love expanding the boundaries of concrete. The possibilities with concrete are endless and exciting. This inspires me every day and hopefully will inspire others to see beauty that can be created from a simple gray powder and some sand. Concrete is not just for sidewalks. It can take on many beautiful and mysterious shapes,” she explained.

Visit www.englewoodrotary.org for more information.

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