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Alexander Fraser, Producing Director, Bucks County Playhouse, Abby Langsted, spokesperson for New Hope Arts & Crafts Festival and Nelly Kouzmina, 2014 Best of Show, and last year’s 2nd Place Fiber winner. Photo by Gordon Neiburg

The Annual New Hope Juried Arts & Crafts Festival scheduled for the weekend of September 24 and 25, 2016 has over 160 local and national artists and craftspeople. It is held at New Hope Solebury High School, 182 West Bridge Street, New Hope, PA. The rain or shine Festival is open Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. An event planned for the whole family, there is face painting and henna tattoos as well as a children’s art tent, a food court and acoustic musical entertainment. While there is no admission charge, a $1 donation is appreciated.

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First Place Winner 2015, Tari Zarka. Photo by Gordon Neiburg

For the second year, proceeds of the Festival will go towards maintaining the New Hope Visitor’s Center. Sponsored by Penn Community (formerly First Federal of Bucks County) and Bucks County Playhouse, The New Hope Arts & Crafts Festival attracts artisans from states along the east coast and thousands of visitors. Artists and craftspeople include specialists in oil painting, pastels, watercolors, drawing, etching, mixed media, black and white and color photography, soft and hard sculpture, wood turning and rustic furniture, pottery and glassware, wearable art, leather and fabric handbags, handspun and felted clothing and jewelry – including hand-blown glass beadwork as well as precious and semi-precious metals and stones. Prizes are awarded in six different categories: crafts, fine arts, fiber, jewelry, mixed media and photography.

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Crafter Kathy Dinsmore at the loom teaching young guests about her craft. Photo by Gordon Neiburg

The operations of the Visitor’s Center located at 1 West Mechanic Street in New Hope, which had been unoccupied for several months, were graciously taken over by the Bucks County Playhouse.  Shortly thereafter, the Playhouse partnered with the New Hope Arts & Crafts Festival as a means to acquire revenue for the running of the Visitor’s Center, a significant town landmark and the only local information center that promotes all area businesses.  Public restroom facilities and Playhouse ticket sales are also available at the Visitor’s Center during normal business hours.

Constructed in 1839, seven years after New Hope was incorporated, the Visitor’s Center building served as New Hope’s first town hall, school, and jail.  In his book New Hope, Pennsylvania, River Town Passages, New Hope historian Roy Ziegler states that the building “served as the municipal building and jail for nearly a hundred years until the borough moved into its new offices in a converted fire station. The original old jail gates from 1839 have been converted into garden trellises that greet thousands of visitors each year.”

The Bucks County Playhouse presents “Vocalosity”, the all-new live concert event from the creative mind of artistic producer Deke Sharon (“Pitch Perfect”The Sing-Off”) that takes a cappella to a whole new level! This fast-paced production features an all-star ensemble of diverse young vocalists. It runs September 23 through October 2, 2016.

On Sunday, September 25th, the New Hope Historical Society celebrates New Hope History Day. For more details, visit www.newhopehs.org.

 

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