The staff and volunteers of the Waterfowl Festival are busily planning for the 50th, scheduled for November 12 through 14.
“Many people don’t realize that planning for the Waterfowl Festival is a year-long endeavor so as of now we are counting on being able to celebrate our 50th this fall – albeit with some changes for the safety designed to protect our artists, exhibitors, volunteers and the entire community,” said Waterfowl Festival Board President Kevin Greaney. “Most importantly we’re planning to celebrate our history, heritage, art, and culture as a community again.”
Waterfowl Chesapeake, the parent nonprofit of the festival, was awarded two forgivable PPP (Payroll Protection Program) loans established by the 2020 CARES Act, with support from the Department of the Treasury. These much-needed funds have allowed Waterfowl to keep staff on the payroll and working toward organizing for the 50th Waterfowl Festival.
Since November, the Virtual Art Gallery, online at WaterfowlFestival.org, has generated a much-needed sales boost to many fine artists who were juried into last year’s show. The site has recorded over $40,000 in sales during a time when art lovers were limited to online purchases. Those sales have been vital to the artists and Waterfowl’s planning since a percentage of each purchase helps support Waterfowl’s 2021 Festival. New works are being continuously added.
Recently, the Virtual Gallery was refreshed to include works from new artists from the local Working Artists Forum, Waterfowl Festival’s Buy, Sell, and Swap, and Chesapeake Marketplace exhibits. More than 250 pieces of art are on sale in the gallery for the at-home shopper at https://waterfowlfestival.org/virtual-art-gallery. The gallery will be open through April 30.
Painter Julia Purinton and photographer Heather Orkis are top sellers, both sold five pieces from the gallery. Al Jordan’s “Frosty Morning” carving of a merlin was the top-priced piece, selling at $2,950.
“By engaging our art buyers online and providing an exciting virtual experience for art collectors, we have kept the festival in the hearts and minds of our collectors and fans,” added Kevin. “We hope this momentum and online sales keeps us moving forward toward a terrific 50th Festival in the Fall where all our fantastic art can be enjoyed in person.”
At this time, the festival is recruiting vendors and accepting applications for new artists who wish to exhibit for 2021. The links to the applications can be found at the following: https://waterfowlfestival.org/apply-to-be-an-exhibiting-artist and https://waterfowlfestival.org/apply-to-be-a-vendor.
WAF Artists Added to Virtual Art Gallery
The ongoing Waterfowl Festival Virtual Art Gallery now includes an additional 12 members of Working Artists Forum, an Easton based organization of professional artists.
The following artists each have two to five original paintings available through this online gallery: Barbara Watson; Barbara Zuehlke; Betty Huang; Carla Huber; Jane Knighton; Kathy Gardiner; Kathy Kopek; Maggii Sarfaty; Marianne Kost; Maureen Wheatley; Nancy Thomas; and Pat Lang.
The virtual gallery is open through April 30 at https://waterfowlfestival.org/virtual-art-gallery.