Eclipse prepares for an artful extravaganza

Published 9:44 pm Tuesday, November 16, 2010

For the fifth year, the work of Suffolk artists and crafters will be on display at an annual community art show.

The Eclipse Extravaganza, which began as a small arts and crafts show, has developed into a tradition that draws folks from all over the area.

“People come out every year and look forward to this,” said Paula Hicks, co-coordinator. “I enjoy getting to watch people seek out specific things that they’ve come to look forward to purchasing each year.”

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The event will be held at the Crittenden, Eclipse and Hobson Ruritan Clubhouse, 8881 Eclipse Drive, on Nov. 20 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Admission to the one-day arts and crafts event is free, and hand-made merchandise onsite will include Christmas ornaments and gifts, jewelry, photography, paintings, prints and cards from area artists, whimsical painted tile and glass, gourmet pet treats, candies, desserts and other food goods.

The event began five years when Hicks and Kelli McGlynn identified a need in the community for a local shopping opportunity.

“People in the community were asking for a local event that they could shop at for Christmas,” Hicks said. “There are so many great artists in the community, many who live in the Crittenden area, and people wanted a way to see the artists and what they had for sale around the holidays.”

The artists range from full-time, professional artists to those who are pursuing side projects. All the work is of the highest quality, Hicks said, and the community is reflected in some of the pieces, as well.

This year will feature a handful of new vendors, but the majority of the vendors are those who have been with the show in the past.

“We still have many of our artists who participated the first year participating this year,” Hicks said. “Each year, we give priority registration to those who have participated before and then we accept applications for remaining spots.”

This year, one of the vending spots has been donated to the Nansemond Swim Club.

“We really don’t want to grow beyond the capacity of the location we’re at so we keep the number of vendors limited,” Hicks said.

There will also be the old-time favorite Brunswick stew, a newly-added clam chowder, homemade breads and rolls and desserts available for hungry shoppers to purchase.