What’s the biggest and arguably the best party in Edmonds, and definitely the high point of the year for the local arts community? It’s the benefit party that serves as the traditional kick-off event for the Edmonds Art Festival.
Wednesday night’s event was a celebration of months of hard work and planning by the Edmonds Arts Festival army of volunteers, a chance to enjoy the best visual arts our region has to offer, and the rare opportunity to spend a wonderful evening with all the people who make art happen in our community.
This year’s party brought an estimated 500 arts supporters, patrons, artists and just plain citizens to the Frances Anderson Center and Library Plaza Room.
The evening’s high point is the drawing of raffle tickets, in which attendees get the rare opportunity to own original art donated by local artists, with all proceeds going to the Arts Festival. Edmonds native and internationally-known travel expert Rick Steves emceed the event, assisted by Art Festival president Diane Cutts and several volunteers.
“One of the greatest things about Edmonds is that it’s a complete community,” Steves said. “We have mountains, water, a thriving economy, great people, a strong spirit of volunteerism, good governance — and we have art, that intangible expression of the love of life that brings it all together. Art makes us more than ourselves. It brings us into a different mindset. It brings us together as a community. And it wouldn’t happen without a dedicated community of supporters committed to enriching our lives in this way. The people who make this happen are heroes to me. And believe me, without art we simply couldn’t have an Edmonds kind of day.”
— Story and photos by Larry Vogel