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Artists fill Evanston lakefront

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Dawes Park on Evanston's lakefront is filled with about 140 artists this weekend participating in the 37th annual Lakeshore Arts Festival.

A detail from Fran Jaffe's Strange Fruit.

Dawes Park on Evanston's lakefront is filled with about 140 artists this weekend participating in the 37th annual Lakeshore Arts Festival.

About 10,000 people were expected to turn out for the event, which includes works in ceramics, fiber, glass, jewelry, mixed media, painting, photography, prints/drawing, sculpture, watercolor, and wood.

Carbondale artist Fran Jaffe has won prizes in the in mixed media category at the festival from 2007 to 2012 for her original gourds and this weekend was showing her “Strange Fruit” gourd, which was inspired by one of her favorite songs.

Artist Laura Garza, with a potential customer.

In the jewelry division, Laura Garza sells her earthy, rustic pieces alongside her simple and pure collection. Garza said that she took a metal class a year and a half ago and became addicted.

The lakefront is "a perfect location” for the festival, Garza said.

In addition to the artists’ tents, the event featured a silent auction tent and a children’s craft tent where kids can use bright tissue paper to create flowers, paint, or draw among other activities.

Live music and food from eight restaurateurs help keep visitors entertained and fed while they shop.

But not all of the art is for sale. One “community weaving project” at the booth for Mather Pavillion, a nursing and rehabilitation facility, was attracting people of all ages to contribute to their ongoing art project.

Art therapist Caroline Even oversees the community weaving project.

Next door to the Mather Pavillion booth was the Levy Senior Center booth that had various artwork including wood carvings, pottery, paintings, glass fusion and beading made by residents, who are usually over 50.

“We’re here because we have such wonderful artists,” Instructor Janice Wojciechowski said. “If they [the seniors] sell something, they’re so excited.”

Hours for the festival today are 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Dawes Park is located on Sheridan Road at Church Street

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