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Fine Arts Festival A Big Success for Greater Reston Arts Center

by Dave Emke — May 25, 2017 at 2:45 pm 5 Comments

This past weekend’s Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival was a major success for Greater Reston Arts Center, its executive director says.

“I can tell you that not only is the Northern Virginia Fine Arts Festival a marquee cultural event for the area, it is GRACE’s largest fundraiser,” said Lily Siegel, GRACE’s executive director and curator. “We, again, successfully raised half of our operating budget for the year.”

Siegel said the annual operating budget for GRACE is about $550,000.

She said that while attendance for the event cannot be accurately measured because of the numerous entrance points to Reston Town Center, casual counts have organizers estimating between 20,000 and 30,000 visitors over the course of the weekend.

Those thousands of visitors gave a lot of positive reaction to the cultural event, Siegel said.

“Response from the public and the artists was overwhelmingly positive,” she said. “We repeatedly heard that this year’s festival had the highest quality of work on display yet [and] it continues to get stronger every year.”

Siegel also said the festival’s jurors were “consistently impressed” by the excellence of the work at the show.

“This is one of the most competitive fine arts festivals in the country to gain acceptance to and it shows,” she said. “This all goes hand-in-hand with the mission of making the festival an extension of the gallery experience available to the public throughout the year at the Greater Reston Arts Center.”

Photos by Megan Myers and Carol Nahorniak

  • Tammi Petrine

    While I’m happy for GRACE, I hope it relocates to an venue where all are welcome. Until free parking is restored to RTC, many can not patronize businesses or events there. So thrilled that GRACE has a new spokesperson leader not affiliated with Boston Properties too. Helps the optics of the organization for sure.

    • freestylergbb

      Attendance seemed light so I’m happy GRACE was successful financially. However, despite the fact that this a juried show and one of the best in the country, several artists told us traffic was much less than in the past, which I can only suspect was because people thought they had to pay for parking. More folks showed up last year in the rain, apparently. BP is affecting Reston beyond the damage many stores are experiencing.

    • Jenny Gibbers

      Hey Tammy, is it possible that agents of the secret state police have taken over GRACE and made it their local HQ? Just wondering brcause the stairways lead to an overview from where one could easily monitor all activity of the RTC. Thanks for sharing any insights.

  • TheKingJAK

    I despise Boston Properties at the moment, but GRACE has always been a true asset to Reston.

  • RestonAssurance

    I was tempted to go seeing the set-up in passing, but the nonsense that is Boston Properties made that a no can do.

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