The official poster of this year's Coconut Grove Arts Festival is "Grove Regatta" by Ft. Lauderdale-based painter Madeliene Abling. It was presented at a party on Thursday night, high above the Sonesta Coconut Grove.
The Grove poster parties are a community event; the whole town comes out and makes a night of it. Everyone knows everyone else and the yearly ritual is looked forward to in anticipation of February's Arts Festival.
Madeliene was proud to show off her work. It's an unusual size from many past posters, as it's square. I like that.
Carlos Lopez-Cantera, Lt. Gov. of Florida; Commissioner Ken Russell and Monty Trainer, head of the Arts Festival. Three big-shot Grovites.
The usual goodies and fun were there, lots of friends, politicians, artists and such.
As usual, Roxie Vargas, reporter from NBC6, emceed the event and it was presented live, during the 6 pm news as it is every year.
Curtis Crider, Mayor Tomas Regalado and Commissioner Ken Russell were part of the ceremony.
I got to kibitz with Cris Sweeny and Claire Lardner of FrameWorks on Commodore Plaza, which is having it's reopening party on Saturday, February 6. Claire said I looked stressed. I think it might have been that incredible orange vodka drink they had at the event.
William Rivas, GM of CocoWalk and Margaret Nee VP of Development at Sabal Hill (the Pointe Group) and Pia Clemens with her neighbor Jack Feldkamp.
Old friends, Atchana Capellini, Richard Issa and Gigi Leyva, it wouldn't be a party without them. Atchana is opening her Atchana's East/West restaurant on Commodore Plaza, below FrameWorks, but they won't be open at the same time as the FrameWorks grand opening on Saturday, Feb. 6.
The Coconut Grove Arts Festival is Saturday through Monday, February 13-15, 2016, in downtown Coconut Grove. All info is at cgaf.com.