The 25th annual Three Rivers Art Festival graced the streets of Covington once again, bringing outstanding artists in a wide variety of media to the area for one of the South's finest juried art shows and sales.
Here are some photographs of the this year's event and its offerings. Click on the images to make them larger.
"Now we are up to 500 artists applying every year. It's a juried event so only 200 get in," he explained.
It has become nationally known and nationally recognized, something that people look forward to each year. "They put this event on their calendar as soon as we announce next year's dates," he said.
For St. Tammany Parish and particularly Covington, the festival brings in from 50,000 to 60,000 people over the weekend so the tax revenues derived from it are tremendous, Bergeron went on to say.
Now in its 25th year, this has been an ongoing project that continues to grow every year, according to Bergeron. "If you want to invest in a very high quality piece of art you can do it there. We have everything from ten dollar pieces of jewelry to $50,000 pieces of art," he noted.
It's also a great family event. "So you bring out your kids. It's a wonderful place to go and there's something for everybody," Bergeron concluded.
This event has three purposes, all of which are connected to the festival’s home parish, St. Tammany, and all that this community has to offer. First, the festival serves to expand and enhance St. Tammany’s reputation as an arts-oriented community and mecca for artists and art lovers. Columbia Street, along which the artists’ booths run and the music plays, is filled with art throughout the year from multiple galleries to art supplies. Essentially, this one street is any art enthusiast’s heaven. The festival also adds to the many other attractions and events that make St. Tammany a wonderful tourist destination.
Lastly, the festival supports art education for St. Tammany Parish school students. By hosting a student art competition that is displayed during the festival, the event inspires and encourages children of all ages to experiment with and create art.
At the festival itself, the Children’s Area offers hands-on activities, and the Arts Alive! program provides live demonstrations by exhibiting artists during the day so kids can either watch or participate in artistic creation.
The Covington Three Rivers Art Festival is promoted through an extensive media campaign that targets sophisticated, knowledgeable buyers in the Greater New Orleans area, South Louisiana and the Gulf Coast.
This festival is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that is run by a volunteer board and part-time coordinator, supplemented by more than 150 additional volunteers committee members and workers. Funding is generated by event sponsorships, donations, grants and exhibited booth fees.
"The purpose of the Covington Three Rivers Art Festival is to expand and enhance the reputation of St. Tammany Parish as an arts oriented community and mecca for artists and art lovers to serve as an attraction for cultural tourists to St. Tammany Parish; to support artists in St. Tammany Parish and outside of St. Tammany Parish; and to support art education for students living in St. Tammany Parish or attending a St. Tammany Parish school."