Our Welcome To Sanford Artist of the Week column takes a different direction this week, to shine the spotlight on ALL of the community’s painters, potters, poets, musicians, photographers, actors, dancers and singers. On Saturday, October 5, Mayor Chet Mann formally declared the month as ARTS-tober, as a way to recognize the city’s heritage and emerging role as a center of cultural arts. The declaration recognizes the broad cultural diversity and source of inspiration and education that arts provide for our residents and guests.

Mayor Mann signed the proclamation at City Hall after El Refugio’s annual Festival Latino at the Mann Center. The timing of the signing event was especially appropriate, because the festival included music and performances that celebrated Sanford’s Latino community and included more than 20 dancers and musicians from Atizapán de Zaragoza, Sanford’s sister city.

The timing is also appropriate moving forward, because October is filled with special events that recognize local artists and honor our artistic heritage. One significant highlight comes with the dedication of 3 “found objects” statues in Depot Park.  Railroad-themed pieces of a conductor, a train hobo and a mother & daughter waiting on a train will be formally dedicated on October 17. (You can learn more about this event and sculptor Jason Morris in last week’s Artist column.)

The Sanford Brush & Palette Club‘s 55th Annual Art Show takes place at the Bob E. Hales Center from October 19-29. Roughly 1,000 pieces from the organization’s 70+ members will be on display and will include conventional paintings, as well as sculptures, mixed media, textiles, clay and more.  Attendees will enjoy seeing abstracts, landscapes, seascapes and still lifes. Much of the art will be available for purchase, and raffles will allow visitors to support arts education in the community.

With a quilt show at the Civic Center October 18-19, ongoing activities at the Temple Theatre and live performances taking place throughout the month and throughout Sanford, October is truly a month to experience all the artistry that Sanford has to offer.