Exactly Six years ago, on the 14th and 15th of February, 2004, the first PPAA Sidewalk Art Festival
opened in Placencia. The origin of the Art Festival however was not with the PPAA. That can be
accredited to “The Sidewalk Arts Committee”, which included, Bianca Felsher Barkan,
Barbara Edrick, Jack Linker, Candy Powers Cheryl Galipeau and Paul Bowman,. The group began to
organize their Sidewalk Art Festival back in 2001, before Hurricane Iris. However, like in so many
other ways, the Storm delayed the plans of the Committee and their organization slowly drifted apart.
Later in 2003, Carrie Fairweather, Floriana Cordelli, Barbara Edrick, Corol Wade Bevier and Bianca
Felsher Barkan took those plans and breathed new life into them, establishing the PPAA and creating
the first Sidewalk Art Festival.
The PPAA is proud to say that the Sixth Annual Sidewalk Arts Festival was
a success and the people
at the heart of the event this year were, Lita Krohn, Nichelle Rotier (the co-chairs), Paul Farage,
(the Secretary and Treasurer) along with the members, Susan Hall, John Mullarkey and Bianca Barkan,
as mentioned before, Bianca is one of the original architects of this annual event.
One major change for 2009 was opening up the stage to local musician, singers, comedians, dancers
and poets, instead of featuring a headliner band from Belize City . The two day show was hosted by
Placencia’s own, Nick Diamond and backed up by D.J. Curling, who provided music and karaoke
between the other acts. Among the performances were, the Placencia Ballet Dance Group,
choreographed by Bianca Barkan and assisted by Terry Dobson. Congo Charlie then took center stage
with his harmonica, playing a few tunes from the Blues, bringing a hint of Louisiana under the big tent.
Later Bob read some of his original poetry, which was followed by open mic with Piranha Pizza’s, Ron Pitt.
The following day, the show opened with kids activities, lead by James Augustine. Another local band,
“Diamonds In the Ruff”, played a few of their favorites, which also featured lead singers, Jamie Muschamp
and Nichelle Rotier.
Having local musicians instead of a big name band gave this year’s festival a more home town feeling.
There is so much talent on the peninsula that we felt we needed to support these performers who are
trying to make a name for themselves. Additionally, it’s nice to see members of our community come out
and display there talents on stage.
With weeks of rain proceeding the event, it was unclear how many artists would
On Saturday morning, the Sun rose into a blue, clear sky that remained perfect throughout the weekend.
The artists, some of whom got an early start, as early as 8 AM, began showing up and the flow just kept
going. In the end 27 artists attended this years festival, most of them going home feeling satisfied
from the event.
The PPAA tent was alive with activity! Besides a busy and well stocked bar,
the stage was bustling with
entertainment, the PPAA crew was selling T-Shirts, food from Ms. Myrtle’s, fresh, chilled watermelon
slices and raffle tickets.
Congratulations to Charlotte, who won the bike raffle and to Lucy Wallen,
who walked away with 100 LBS
of butane, proved free from Peninsula Distributors LTD.
A special thanks goes out to all of you who attended the Festival and to our
sponsors, the Placencia
Tourism Center, Belikin, Coke & Crystal, Rum Fish, M&M Hardware, UBOC.TV, Chabil Mar, La Dolce Vita,
NICH, Barefoot Beach Bar, Tipsy Tuna Sports Bar, Wallen’s Market LTD, Caribbean Travel & Tour,
Cocoplum, DJ Curling, Century 21 BTAL, Atlantic Bank and Go-Tees.
In closing I would like to say that, the Sidewalk Art Festival is the PPAA’s
biggest fundraiser as well as
being a source for artist to gather and network. The cost of the Festival however, is getting more
expensive each year, while profits seem to be less. This year the largest costs were advertising and
additional help, due to the lack of volunteers. While the PPAA would like to continue to be there for the
community, providing free workshops, a talent show and an Art Festivals, we simply cannot afford to go
on with out the help of the community. On March 6th, 2009 at 4:30 PM, the PPAA will be holding their
annual elections at the Secret Garden Restaurant.
As of this far, only one member is running, leaving 3 spots yet to be filled.
If you’re a member of the
PPAA or just a member of the community, please find the time to attend this meeting and offer your support
to an organization that has been there for Placencia during the past six years.
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