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Published April 17, 2009, 07:10 AM

Art & Culinary Show offers the finer things at a value

Get ready to be wowed. The fourth annual Art & Culinary Show is here.

By: Jeff Holmquist, New Richmond News

Get ready to be wowed.

The fourth annual Art & Culinary Show will feature fine art, fine food, fine wine, cooking demonstrations, entertainment and more on Sunday, April 19.

The event, sponsored by the Rotary Club of New Richmond, runs from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $40 in advance or $45 at the door.

Even though the price may seem high, especially in tough economic times, organizer Jo Wrich said ticket buyers get a great value from the price.

“It’s such a unique experience,” she said. “Many people have said it’s definitely worth the ticket price.”

Apart from the mouth-watering food served throughout the evening, attendees get to sample wine and other spirits. They can also watch artists demonstrate their craft, listen to music or take notes during chef demonstrations.

Several live auctions of art work will also be conducted, as well as door prize drawings for other art.

As an added bonus, the proceeds from the event help fund the Rotary’s STRIVE scholarship program. STRIVE provides students who may not have the highest grade point average an incentive to improve their GPA during their senior year. Scholarships are awarded to those who bump up their GPA by one point and who participate in mentorship opportunities throughout the year.

It’s the tie to the scholarship program that attracts many of the artists and chefs to the event.

Several of the visual artists returning for this year’s show, like Karla Ness and Judy Paulson, are among the big boosters for the event.

“I was one of those kids,” Ness said. “I wasn’t a star student or a star athlete.”

Rewarding students who put forth extra effort, no matter what their class rank, is something she likes to support.

“It’s a wonderful place to put our energy,” she said. “It’s a great day and a good cause. And everybody in the Rotary is great to work with.”

The show also gives the artists a chance to visit with local residents and business leaders, and talk about their passion.

“It’s a place for me to meet new people and get my work seen,” she said.

Paulson agreed.

“It’s a nice, elegant day,” said Paulson, who operates her business out of her Backwater Studio in New Richmond. “I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”

Paulsen also likes how the participating artists are treated during the day of the show. Massages are provided, along with free tickets for the guests of the artists.

“It’s a special day and it’s an exciting day,” she said.

Paulson said she’s noticed that people in the New Richmond area are becoming more aware of the value of art and that’s what makes the Rotary event so much fun.

“People have a lot of questions about my work and they seem genuinely interested,” she said.

Ness said the artists feel appreciated as a result of the special treatment they receive at the show.

“This is my contribution to the community,” she said. “We contribute a great deal, and we feel honored at this event.”

Ness is contributing a pastel piece to the show (whose work can be viewed at karlafaithness.com) and Paulson is donating a mixed media picture for the event.

Ness’s piece is an image patterned after the Parthenon frieze, giving the artwork a sense of movement.

Tickets are available at The Deerfield, The SPACE and Ready Randy’s. A tax deduction can be claimed on $20 of the ticket price.

Artists involved include James and Susan Davis, tatted cards; Bridget Foust, graphite, pencil drawings; Carl and Sandy Holman, metal sculpture; Christy Schwartz, pastel on paper; Margaret Rivard, acrylic; Julie Adams, acrylic and collage on canvas; Jesse and Dave Gavin, iron hand forged and wood; Marsie Danielson, oil; Karla Faith Ness, pastel on paper; Allie Ness, acrylic on canvas; Signe Shores, acrylic on canvas; Gail Dalzell, silver wrap jewelry; Lauren Edwards, stained glass; Connie Burch, pastel; Dave Geister, oil; Judy Paulson, mixed media; Genie Castro, mixed media; and David Johnson, photography.

Culinary participants are Acapulco, Stillwater; Agave Kitchen, Hudson; Bean Bag Coffee House, New Richmond; Bellarietta Bistro, New Richmond; Champs, New Richmond; Family Fresh, New Richmond; Hammond Hotel, Hammond; Joseph’s, Stillwater; Ready Randy’s, New Richmond; Suzanna’s, New Richmond; Star Prairie Trout Farm, Star Prairie; T’s Meat Market, New Richmond; Tangled Up In Blue, St. Croix Falls; and West Wind Supper Club, River Falls.

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