BY MELANIE BUCK –
The 3rd annual Ouachita Arts Celebration has promised to be bigger and better than ever before with more artists, more music, and a unique vintage car show lining up Mena Street on Saturday, November 5. The event’s growth positions it to become one of the area’s premiere events.
The city will again block off Mena Street between Janssen and Maple for the event that highlights the Mena Arts District.
Organizers are particularly proud to be welcoming a number of new “attractions” to the event as well as growing partnerships with many of the downtown businesses to add to the activities for the day. Rick Chrisman, of the event organizers, said he was impressed with the blend of local schools, organizations, businesses, artists/musicians etc. mixed with out of town groups and activities that will also be part of the day-long family event.
The day will kick off at 10 a.m. with the National Anthem being performed by the Mena High School Choir. The Junior Ouachita Little Theatre will perform at 10:10 a.m.
At 10:30 a.m., Vintage Tin – Making Old Cars New Again, will present the Vintage Tin Car Show. The Willys, Overland, Knight Registry will be bringing their restored pre-1943 cars and have invited Vintage Orphan Car owners (those no longer manufactured) up to 1960. These impeccably restored cars have to be seen to be believed. This “Art of the Car” exhibit includes the “Doc Hudson” from the Pixar movie “Cars.” Event-goers will have their chance to sit in the car and have their picture taken.
Belly Dancing will be presented at 11:15 and 12:30. The American Tribal Style Collective is a group of belly dancers who practice the American Tribal style. It is a dance language inspired from many tribal cultures in Southern Europe, Western Asia, and North Africa.
Logan Lind will bring musical entertainment to the stage at 11:30 a.m. The Fair Lady and Main Street Shoppe will present a fashion show at noon.
The Acorn Choir will perform at 1 p.m. followed by music from the talented Benjamin Morren, a 12-year old piano prodigy.
At 2:15, a martial arts demonstration will begin and Next Generation Dance Academy will perform at 2:30. There will be a drawing for a $250 cash door prize at 3 p.m., concluding the day’s activities.
In addition to the state events, downtown businesses will be open and hosting events as well including flint-knapping, the art of falconry, face paintings, and much more.
The Mercantile will have a ‘tax-free’ day where owner, Judy, will cover taxes on all items purchased that day.
Beautiful Soles, A Christian Dance Company will host Open House for visitors to check out the new Creative Arts Center on the corner of Mena and Maple.
Mena Art Gallery will present their Christmas Gift Show and will have art demonstrations by local artists.
American Artisans will feature chicken pot pies in addition to a limited menu of their regular fare. Two fine artisans will demonstrate how to make wire wrapped jewelry and pine needle baskets.
Four Winds Trading Post will have artists weaving Dream Catchers. Rich Mountain Community College will be on hand as well with demonstrations on pottery and culinary arts at their booth.
The Ouachita Arts Celebration is open to everyone and will be a great family fun event in the heart of the Mena Art District.