This weekend, Anna Maria hosted its first Chalk Festival on Pine Avenue. I had been told a little about what it would be like – chalk artists from around the world drawing on the street and little squares available for kids to do the same, as well as lots of music, t-shirts, etc.
However, I did not realize how talented these artists were – the pictures really did seem to be 3D! There were a wide variety of styles including Winnie the Pooh, remakes of old family photos, and coastal themes. Some artists just drew on the road while others also chalked on ao bard standing behind the picture on the road, which intensified the 3-d effect. One artist invited people to stand on her art and get their picture taken – it looked like they were standing on some rocks in the middle of a stream! Quite a few pictures also directed the viewers to stand on the ‘x’ to get the full effect.
This was a fun event for kids as well! Our daughter loved looking at the artwork as she carried a box of chalk down the street, excited and inspired to create some art of her own! The kid’s area was great! There were enough small squares for the kids to do as many as they would like and ‘special’ chalk was provided that produced brilliant colors. I colored alongside my daughter and learned how difficult it is to make the chalk cover the rough surface of the road.
This is a great addition to the festivals the island hosts throughout the year. We did not attend on the first day of the festival on Saturday but made our way down on Sunday afternoon. The benefit of this was that all of the artists had completed their work and we saw the finished product of each one.
However, I think it would have been interesting to watch them work. Next year, we will make it a priority to visit during Saturday or earlier in the day on Sunday. No matter what your age, plan to add this to your agenda if you plan to be in town here next January. It is well worth it – whether you spend the whole day or just stop by for a few minutes, you are sure to enjoy the experience!
Here are some other articles with great information about Anna Maria Island: