IW Chamber plans new events

Published 7:59 pm Saturday, January 3, 2015

Isle of Wight County’s chamber of commerce is unveiling three major new events for the new year, which are designed to bring tourists into the county and to celebrate local art and dining.

The Isle of Wight-Smithfield-Windsor Chamber of Commerce’s first new event for 2015 is the Mardi Gras Run4Beads, scheduled for Feb. 7 in Smithfield. The Run4Beads is the only Mardi Gras run and festival in the Hampton Roads area and will include three races through Windsor Castle Park. Every participant receives an event T-shirt and welcome bag, and the top three finishers in each age group receive medals.

After the run, there will be awards, jazz music and food at the Mardi Gras Festival, which is free and open to the public, in downtown Smithfield.

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For more information and race registration, call the chamber of commerce at 357-3502.

The Chamber’s next new event for 2015 is an evening of great food and drink designed to raise college scholarship funds for deserving seniors in the county’s high schools.

Flavors of Isle of Wight, scheduled for April 29 at the Smithfield Center, will feature restaurants from across the county serving samples of their signature dishes, wines and brews, as well as entertainment and a silent auction.

Tickets are $25 per person, and proceeds will benefit college scholarships to be awarded through the Isle of Wight Community Foundation. Tickets for Flavors of Isle of Wight will go on sale in March.

The Chamber will also present the first Smithfield Fall Festival of the Arts, a juried art show with artists from across the Mid-Atlantic region displaying their work on Main Street in downtown Smithfield. There will be live entertainment throughout the day on stage at the gazebo at 228 Main St.

Presented in cooperation with the Isle of Wight Arts League, the goals of the festival are to encourage and promote the vibrant arts community of Smithfield and Isle of Wight County and to showcase downtown Smithfield.

The festival will welcome artists working in ceramics, drawing, fiber/leather, glass, jewelry, metal, painting, photography, wood and other media. The artists will be selected for the show by a jury of regional art experts.

For more information or to enter artwork into the show, visit www.smithfieldfallfestival.com.