Friday, June 24, 2011

Sawdust Festival Begins in Laguna Beach

The 45th annual Sawdust Arts and Crafts Festival begins tonight in Laguna Beach and continues to August 28th.  This is a must-see for art lovers, crafts people or just locals looking to do something different with their weekend.

Photo by Flickr 7500
I’ve managed to go a couple times, and there’s a nice flea market feel to it as you wander past the stalls, admiring the different artworks. The works are a little pricey, but my friend has a great custom of buying note cards printed with Laguna Beach landscapes and using them throughout the year for birthday greetings.  I once bought a birdhouse made out of a gourd from a Native American artist, and a metal sculpture from James Koch, who is my favorite artist there. He’s had a booth every time I’ve gone, but I have yet to see him. The other artists tend to be in their stalls, ready to answer questions or chat.

The other mediums vary from ceramics, jewelry, painting, mixed media, photography, you name it, and it’s pretty much there. It’s also really evolved to meet the tastes of everyone, so don’t be fooled into thinking you’re going to be looking at a bunch of paintings. If you love music, there’s live music and other entertainment (a balloon diva!), if you love eating out, there’s a section devoted to a range of foods, from kettle corn to Greek, and if you’re a boozehound, trust me, it’s a-flowing with wine, beer, and…that’s as far as I got before the rest of the day became a blur.
James Koch Sculpture I Bought

On the whole, it’s a small space, so even with eating and hanging out, I don’t think you could spend more than a couple of hours there. The parking is kind of a bear; you can leave your car in a lot (for a fee) and take the trolley (for free) to the actual festival. Still, it’s a smooth operation; all the years of experience have made it thus.  There's metered parking around, but good luck with that.

According to the website, admission is $7.75 for adults (one day), $3.25 for children 6-12, and free for children five and under. Season passes and senior discounts are also available.

For more details, directions and hours, visit their web site at

No comments:

Post a Comment