DAPHNE – Plans for the 33rd annual Jubilee Festival of Arts in Daphne are moving forward with the last available slots for artists filled recently, Casey Williams, director of the Eastern Shore Chamber of Commerce, said.
The festival is scheduled Oct. 16 and 17 at W.O. Lott Park in downtown Daphne. The event will feature exhibits by more than 130 local and regional artists, according to the chamber website.
“The response from the artists has been tremendous,” Williams said. “We are completely full. The park is completely full. While maintaining some distance and traffic flow, we’ve taken all that we can take.”
The event was moved to the park from Main Street in 2020 as a precaution during the COVID-19 pandemic. Williams said event supporters plan to keep the festival in the park in the future.
“Everybody liked the location,” Williams said. “While it still has plenty of room, it’s much easier for us to get around at the festival to check on things, to talk to folks. The artists liked it because there was more room for them between their booths. It was just a win-win for everybody to be able to be in the park. There’re more trees. There’s more grass. It’s cooler because it’s not on the street pavement. There’s some pavement, but it’s more of an art in the park feel and from the artist to the festival goer. For us, it was just a really nice change.”
She said the park also allows more space for the festival’s Kid’s Art and Jubilee Market activities. The Jubilee Market includes offerings from local food providers. Food trucks can also park in an area that allows lines to be kept away from visitors to other event activities.
Local students will continue to take part in the festival with the high-school art exhibition and competition.
“The whole goal is for people to have space to walk, not have to be crowded up or bottlenecked with room to move around, which the park really does give us,” Williams said.
Organizers will add more stations for hand sanitizing and hand washing this year and will continue to encourage visitors to follow federal, state and local health guidelines, she said.
The location and precautions worked well in 2020 during the pandemic, Williams said.
Another change to accommodate people who want to avoid crowds will be virtual activities at the Jubilee Festival.
“For those who can’t attend, we are doing on the Jubilee Festival website, there’s an e-commerce component so that if you can’t go out, if you’re uncomfortable being around folks, you can still go to the website and see a lot of our artists and even purchase through links to their sites,” Williams said. “You can still enjoy some of the festival even if you can’t attend.”
More information about the event is available on the festival website at www.thejubileefestival.com or the festival’s Facebook page.