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Monday, August 22, 2011

Arts in the Gardens

My original intention with this series of blog posts was to chronicle my experience with art and craft shows, starting at the beginning and working my  way to the present. But last weekend, I participated at a show so good, that I am going to temporarily skip ahead, just so I can share it with you.

I am a little worried about posting this.  I am afraid it will sound so good, that all my beading friends will apply next year, and I will be juried out!  But I guess I will take my chances.

The show took place at the Sonnenburg Gardens in Canandaigua, NY- a lovely town in the Finger Lakes region of NY state.  This show is called "Arts in the Gardens" and had about 150 artist booths (just an estimate) as well as winery tent, beer garden, and good food. This organization did a great job of jurying, as the quality of the artwork was excellent.

 The grounds of this State Historic Park are absolutely gorgeous- you couldn’t pick a more idyllic setting.  Here are just a few photos of the gardens and mansion.

The Koy pond

one of the many old greenhouses

But let’s get right to the show.  The show ran Sat. and Sunday.  We were able to set up on Friday- all day from 10AM to 8PM.  You could pull your vehicle right up to your booth spot and unload.  It was so relaxing to be able to be able to have a leisurely set up.  We worked for awhile, took breaks in the gardens, then worked a little more. In contrast, last week I was in a show where we began our setup at 5AM.  It was hot and muggy, and by the time the show began at 10AM, I was already tired, hot and sticky, and pretty grouchy.  It made for a very long day.  In contrast, setting up for this show was very laid back.

set up on Fri. morning- our camper and trailer parked in front of my space

During setup, volunteers were available to answer any questions or to help any way they could. They were so friendly and helpful all during the show.  Kudos to them.  There was always a volunteer nearby to help- I never had to go searching for one when I had a question. The booth numbers were clearly marked, and our 14’ wide spots gave ample wiggle room, as well as allowing air flow, which was important on Saturday.  (again- in contrast to a show I participated in earlier this year, where each spot was about 10 ½’ wide.  If you happened to be the last person to set up your 10’ tent in your row, it was quite possible that you would not be able to squeeze in! Particularly if one of the other exhibitors happened to set up their tent just a little cockeyed)  We also had lots of room behind our booth for our “back room” storage and extra space to sit.  I love when this happens- I don’t feel so cramped .

Parking spots for exhibitors were assigned and marked clearly.  This avoided the game of jockeying for spaces with the other vendors.  Since we have the truck camper and a trailer, we needed extra space, and they had taken that into consideration- assigning us a large spot right near the entrance.  We stayed in this quiet shaded spot all weekend- sleeping in our camper.  Very pleasant!

Oh yes!  I can’t forget the welcome packets- check this out!   Each one was hand stitched!!! What a cool touch!

 I realize now that is post will be too long if I tell all I want to about this show.  So I will continue it next time.  Teaser: one of my favorite parts was the bathrooms!!! Wait till you see the pictures!


  1. That place is fabulous! We've been there several times when we used to live up there. What a great place for a show!

  2. Don't you love when a show treats the artists with respect? Sounds wonderful.