Campbell River’s POTA is looking forward to an artsy autumn

Group’s major fundraiser and extravaganza hits Tidemark Theatre Oct. 5

Penny Gosselin (right), along with fellow Patrons Of The Arts board member Heather Hughson, take part in this year’s Chalkfest event in downtown Campbell River. Photo submitted

When Patrons Of The Arts (POTA) formed this past February, president Penny Gosselin had ambitious plans for the organization and launched itself into the local arts fold with gusto.

And staying busy has been paying off, Gosselin says.

The group first focused on partnerships with other organizations they thought would benefit from some additional artistic flare, like the Campbell River Garden Club and City of Campbell River’s annual Garden Tour, where POTA placed artists at 25 artists and musicians in 15 gardens over the course of the weekend.

“That was a wonderful success,” Gosselin says, adding that there were 291 tickets sold for the event, which she calls “an absolutely uplifting day with community enthusiasm in full swing.”

The group also participated in the annual Arts Festival downtown, hosting a “Zentangle Art Experience” with Gosselin, along with fellow certified Zentangle teacher Barb Round, giving over 70 people a bit of art relaxation therapy as they enjoyed the festivities.

Next up, Gosselin says, POTA will be joining up with the Campbell River Arts Council to host a soirée during the upcoming Art & Earth Festival. Only 100 tickets will be sold for the event, which will be held at the Museum at Campbell River and feature many local visual and performing artists, including Alex Witcombe of Drifted Creations, Eiko Jones with his stunning photography, Ellen Statz and her pottery and Jill Paris-Rody and her painting along with musical guests Tideline Trio and two talented young local musicians, Kai Bailey and Trevor Potoreiko.

RELATED: New group looks to boost the arts in Campbell River

It has all been building towards POTA’s major event of the year, Gosselin says.

On Oct. 5, they will be taking over the Tidemark Theatre for the Wearable Art Fashion Show.

“I’ve been in contact with all the designers regularly as they let their imaginations run free, pull their designs together, find the music that works, find a model if they need one, and I have to say, I’m a little nervous and a whole lot excited about what is to come,” Gosselin says. ” But I know Heather Gordon Murphy will work her choreographing magic, and everything will be amazing as models sashay down the 16’ x 12’ runway going out from the stage and into the audience.”

Penny says they are planning for a sold-out evening. The Wet Paint Group’s art show will be featured in the lobby art gallery, there will be a reception with the models and designers following the show, along with various sweets and specialty cocktails and mocktails on offer. Tickets for the event are $42 plus applicable taxes and fees.

But what Gosselin and the POTA team is so excited about is just the difference they are trying to make in the lives of local artists.

“It was so important to the POTA board to put in place a mandate, with their launch in February, that completely focused on what our community could offer its local talented artists,” she says.

“Artists usually have to pay entry fees and give commission for sold artwork. POTA is unique in that it charges no entry fees to artists to participate in events, pays them whenever possible, and take no commission from artists work sold, and the artists are thrilled.”

Memberships and sponsorships are rolling in, she says, and more are welcome. Check out their website and their POTA Campbell River Facebook page for more information on membership, sponsorship or information on upcoming events.

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