DuBois Arts Fest to Host Negri, Documentary

From 10 am to 5 pm on June 8, 2002, the Fourteenth Annual Festival of the Arts will be held in Historic Downtown DuBois. Sponsored by the DuBois Area Council on the Arts, the festival features fine arts and traditional crafts, as well as live performances and demonstrations.

Some of the fine arts featured at the festival have included a wide array of visual arts, photography, sculpture, woodcarving, stained glass, and more. Traditional crafts are defined as creative skills that were a way of life in the 18th and 19th centuries, including spinning, weaving, pottery, caning, and candle making, to name a few.

This year’s festival promises to provide an even better atmosphere than in years past. Along with an impressive slate of artists and performers, the Joe Negri Jazz Quartet will be making a highly anticipated appearance. Joe Negri is best known for his role as “Handyman Negri” in Mister Roger’s Neighborhood and is considered an icon to all those who grew up with him. An accomplished jazz musician, Negri served as the music composer for WTAE in Pittsburgh and currently teaches music at Pitt, Duquesne and Carnegie Mellon Universities.

Also on the agenda for performances are Joan Van Dyke’s Mahoning Valley Ballet, Bad Hair Day, Jen Bertiaux, Pamela Mortimer, dONNA ‘N jESS, Elizabeth Lang, and Tom Mowrey. The performances will offer everything from dance to poetry to rock ‘n roll. The festival and all performances are free and open to the public. There are also activities for children of all ages and fabulous food to round out the day.

As a tribute to DuBois and its artists, this year’s festival will be put on film in a documentary style. The documentary will show the history of DuBois and its residents as well as celebrating our cultural heritage. Aside from featuring our historic town, one benefit of the film will be to garner support for all forms of art in DuBois and surrounding communities. Amy Kelley, a member of the programming department at WPSX, is very eager to view the documentary in hopes of adding it to their schedule.

As with all non-profit organizations and starving artists, DACOTA is asking for community support to continue what has become a time-honored tradition in the DuBois area. All donations are gratefully accepted and acknowledged and we cherish those who donate their time and talents to make this festival a reality year after year. Due to the extra expenses of expanding the festival and filming the documentary, we are asking for extra help. Sponsors who donate $300 or more will be permanently listed on the documentary. Not only do these donations celebrate the arts but inform the region of our strong community support.

For more information, please call 371-6809 and be sure to read the Courier-Express for the festival schedule and updates.