Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Serving the campus of the University of Alabama since 1894

The Crimson White

Tuscaloosa to host 15th annual Druid City Arts Festival

Courtesy of Dan Naman

Tuscaloosa will host the 15th annual Druid City Arts Festival from April 5-6 at Government Plaza.

The festival will feature artists’ work, food trucks, live music and a kids zone with activities for the whole family. Admission is free to the public.

The two-day festival will take place downtown at Government Plaza from 5-9 p.m. on Friday, April 5, and 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Saturday, April 6. 

The festival will feature artists who use multiple mediums, including: two-dimensional art, candle making, photography, jewelry, clay and glass.

Nicole Moreno-Lacalle, special events operations manager for the city of Tuscaloosa, said the music and art festival is hosted by the city and sponsored by Cadence Bank. She said there will be 81 artists set up around the plaza selling their pieces.

“We have artists that come from Louisiana, Georgia, you know, all over the southeast region, so it’s just a great, free, family-friendly community event,” Moreno-Lacalle said.

There will also be live music during the festival, with seven different acts performing various musical genres, including bluegrass, rock and country.

Moreno-Lacalle said there will be hands-on activities in the kids zone, including face painting, balloon animals and free shirts to tie-dye while supplies last. Adults can also purchase a shirt to tie-dye. 

She said the festival was started in 2010 by UA students.

“I think from then, every year, it’s just continued to grow and become kind of a staple for the community,” Moreno-Lacalle said.

Pam Weaver, creator and owner of Buttnaked Candles, wrote in an email that she loves coming to the Tuscaloosa festival and will be back this year. 

“The park is the perfect setting, the group of people that manage the festival are so friendly and helpful, and the supporters that come to shop feel like old friends!” Weaver wrote.

Weaver created her hand-poured soy candles to help soothe her dry skin since she suffers from eczema. She wrote that her candles can be melted and used as a head-to-toe body lotion.

“These fragrant soy candles combine the soothing scent of a spa candle with the comfort of an oil massage,” Weaver wrote.

Kathy Garrett, owner of Crocheted Cre8tions by Kathy, is a fiber artist who will be attending the Druid City Arts Festival for the first time. 

Garrett wrote in an email that she is excited to attend the festival since it’s close to The University of Alabama. She wrote that her designs are geared toward younger audiences, or audiences that are young at heart.

“I am trying to change people’s idea of crocheting,” Garrett wrote. “It is not just for grandmas and I don’t make blankets.” 

Garrett crochets and knits fiber wall-art pieces, including dream catchers. She also creates hats, bandanas, ponchos, and stuffed characters from anime and comic series. 

“I enjoy meeting people and seeing the excitement on a customer’s face when they see something they have not seen anywhere else,” Garrett said.

Cassey Harrell, owner of Cassey Harrell Jewelry, wrote in an email that she has also attended this particular festival before and enjoys the hometown feel it gives her, especially since she’s originally from Tuscaloosa. 

Harrell, who now lives in Huntsville, wrote that she will be selling her jewelry pieces, which she describes as “artisan and minimal designed,” made from silver, precious metals and semiprecious stones. She wrote that her designs focus on organic shapes and textures to allow the wearer to create their own self-expression.

Art has always been about conversation, expression and togetherness,” Harrell wrote. She added that festivals bring people together and introduce them “to art in its many forms while also injecting money into the local economy.”

Harrell wrote that she hopes people will be inspired to create their own works of art after being able to engage and ask artisans questions at the festival.

“I absolutely love it when people engage in curiosity about my techniques or designs,” Harrell said. “I love to be able to help people see that art has many different forms and that the act of creating is an act of playing or exploration.”

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