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Black Swamp Arts Festival kicks off its 25th year

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    Main Street is swarmed with people perusing artwork during the 22nd annual Black Swamp Arts Festival in downtown Bowling Green on September 6.

    The Blade
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    during the the Black Swamp Art Festival in downtown Bowling Green on September 10.

    The Blade
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The Black Swamp Arts Festival, an annual art and music event that has received state recognition and is celebrating its 25th year of existence, kicks off Friday.

This year the juried show features 108 artists from Ohio and beyond, as well as another 50 artists in its additional Wood County Invitational Show, a juried event of artists within a 30-mile radius, said David Dupont, co-chair of the festival’s marketing committee.

“I think one of the ways it's lasted for 25 years is at its heart, it stays true to its missions in providing quality entertainment and art to the community, but at the same time there are small innovations going on,” he said.

The Black Swamp Arts Festival held its inaugural event in 1993. This year, the show start with musical entertainment Friday night, and then open with artists’ booths and activities from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday on Main Street downtown.

It was recognized in the January edition of Ohio Magazine, when readers voted it the best festival in the state.

Things to look for this year include a raffle of a glass piece by Findlay artist Andrea Killy-Knight and a second raffle of a 25th-anniversary themed quilt.

Guest artist Chris Fry of Columbus will participate in this year’s Chalk Walk street art competition on Saturday, a contest for high-school aged artists that was started several years ago. The Kiwanis Art Village caters to the younger kids’ creative minds.

An endowment campaign has been set up through the Bowling Green Community Foundation to keep the festival going in future years. Organizers estimate about 60,000 people visit the show each year.

Just around the corner in the same community is the first juried art show for Art Supply Depo, 435 E. Wooster St.

Swamp Things features the work of 16 artists and opens with a reception from 5 to 7 p.m. Friday at the shop. Artist media includes watercolor, oils, colored pencil, printmaking, pastels, and 3-D. The show continues through Oct. 21.

For a full schedule and more information about the Black Swamp Festival, go to For more information about Swamp Things, go to

■ A local artist who works in a medium called graffito, a technique using clay and ink on scratchboard, will be honored during an event to celebrate the arts in Sylvania.

Donald Townsend will be inducted into the city’s Artist Hall of Fame during the PARTY, a reception to honor Townsend’s work from 6 to 9 p.m. Sept. 27. The event will be at Chandler Cafe on Main Street in downtown Toledo.

Townsend, who has sold more than 1,300 pieces and has become known internationally, has also been an art teacher at both Sylvania High School and with the Toledo Museum of Art.

This is a ticketed event and so those interested should order tickets online at or by calling 419-517-0118.

■ Maumee Valley Country Day School’s Wolfe Gallery has installed an exhibition that features the artistry of three generations.

Offline is available for viewing weekdays, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., through Oct. 3 at the school gallery, 1715 S. Reynolds Rd.

It features the work of Lisa Holman, her daughter, Jessica Bohl-Naprawa, and her children, MVCDS second-grader Henry Naprawa, and MVCDS first-grader Harper Naprawa, and poetry by artist Morgan McDonald.

Holman is a glass artist, while her daughter works in mixed media. The kids love to work in painting, drawing and sculpture, according to the school. A reception of their work will be from 5:30 to 7 p.m. Friday.

For more information, go to

■ The Whitehouse Arts Advisory Board is accepting artist applications for its annual Holiday Art Show and Sale on Nov. 18.

The event is defined as a “gently juried” show, and will include an art exhibit by Anthony Wayne Schools students. It will be from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hope United Methodist Church, 10610 Waterville St.

Those interested can apply online at or pick up forms at the Whitehouse Village Hall. For more information, call 419-877-5383.

Send news of art items at least two weeks in advance to or call 419-724-6075.

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