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Dogwood Arts Festival 2011 Flaunts Spring

By Jeaneane Payne

dogwood arts trail

The annual Dogwood Arts Festival kicks off today. Established in 1955, the Dogwood Arts Festival has become one of our nation's most celebrated events. Dogwood driving trails can be found throughout the entire city of Knoxville, each with its own natural beauty.

For the entire month of April, the Dogwood Arts Festival will feature a vibrant mix of blooming gardens and trails, visual arts, crafts, theater, dance, music, film, and literary arts.

The Festival not only promotes the natural beauty of our area, the festival promotes, supports, and fosters educational programs, charitable undertakings, historical, horticultural, canine and equestrian societies, arts, music, drama, crafts, tours, lectures, and other related activities, either singularly or in cooperation with other organizations, for the purpose of emphasizing the cultural opportunities of the City of Knoxville, Tennessee, and for other related purposes.

The Dogwood Arts Festival is one of the largest and finest annual festivals in America and has been termed "The Best 17 Days of Spring in America" by the Southeast Tourism Society. With the flowering of the dogwoods in the Spring, the Festival always has a newness and wonderful freshness every Opening Day. The Dogwood Arts Festival manifests the very best of the nature and the people of East Tennessee, and its commitment to that goal shall continue to be in its forefront.

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More images of Dogwood Arts Trails >>

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Art in Public Places Knoxville
April 1, 2011-March 16, 2012: A world-class exhibition of 25 thought-provoking and awe-inspiring large-scale outdoor sculptures enlivens downtown Knoxville and the McGhee Tyson Airport. Art in Public Places is like an outdoor art gallery strategically situated for all to enjoy.

Regional Fine Art Exhibition
April 1-30: A juried exhibition of fine art encompassing all styles and genres by progressive emerging and professional regional artists from the region. Bennett Galleries – 5308 Kingston Pike

Student Art Exhibition
April 1-30: Knoxville's next generation of artists is on display, featuring the work of gifted art students from area schools. Emporium Center for the Arts – 100 South Gay Street

April 1-21: Our latest indoor sculpture exhibition, Nexus, has been developed this year to showcase regional and national artists working in the field of contemporary sculpture. This is a beautiful exhibition of smaller-scale sculptures from all styles, genres and materials. Emporium Center for the Arts – 100 South Gay Street

Rhythm N' Blooms
April 1-3: Experience East Tennessee's historical and present role in American Roots music! A genre spanning country, blues, jazz, rock, bluegrass and folk, the lineup includes locally and nationally-renowned musicians The Felice Brothers, Darrell Scott, Robinella and the CCstringband, Larry Keel and Natural Bridge, Scott Miller, Danny Barnes, and so many more. Pass required.

Dogwood Art DeTours
April 2-3: Artists studio trails takes you behind the scenes of local artists' working studios, giving you an insider's look into the methods – and magic! – that combine to produce some of East Tennessee's most spectacular works of art.

Dogwood Trails, Open Gardens, and Camera Sites
April 6-24: Enjoy the beauty of East Tennessee in spring. Walk, bike ride, or drive down over 60 miles of trails, open gardens, camera sites, and historic homes with breathtaking residential landscaping, rainbow-hued flowers and blossoming trees. Lakemoore Hills (Loudon Lake) is the 2011 featured trail.

Bikes & Blooms
April 9-10: Experience the Dogwood trails the lean, green way – on a bicycle by way of an organized or self-guided ride. As one of the Festival's Covenant Health official health and fitness events, Bikes & Blooms is an exciting way to get people of all ages peddling toward a healthy lifestyle while enjoying the beauty of our region.

Market Square Art Fair
April 15-17: Downtown Knoxville is transformed into a lively street fair with high-quality arts and crafts booths, demonstrations, entertainment, and festive food. A range of talented artists and artisans will be on hand to share their wares with the community. Street performers, a children's stage, and an all-day line up of bands entertain festival-goers, who will also enjoy a wide variety of food from vendors in addition to Market Square's own selection of unique cafes and eateries.

Diva Luncheon
April 19: East Tennessee's finest women in business and community leadership will gather for a celebratory luncheon featuring a wearable art fashion show and sale at The Foundry at World's Fair Park. An afternoon centering on fashionable art and diva items, surrounded by fine food, entertainment, and even finer friends is sure to spoil all our local divas. Ticket required.

A Very Special Arts Festival
April 28: An inspiring celebration where children with mental and physical challenges celebrate the arts at West High School. The day will be filled with hands-on art activities and performances in the celebration of art, including art-making, acting, instrument-playing, song, and dance. It is important to Dogwood Arts to give these children the chance to have a fun-filled day with different forms of art as their inspiration.

Dogwood Parade
April 29: A celebration of art, nature, and community, the Dogwood Parade will be the heartbeat of downtown Knoxville as it moves down Gay Street with bands, floats, giant helium balloons, and performing arts groups. The Parade celebrates and pays tribute to our region's artistic talent and natural beauty. Cylk Cozart will be the Grande Marshall.

Dogwood Mile & Party on the Square
April 29: Walk, jog, or sprint through the streets of downtown Knoxville in this family-friendly race. Family and friends will meet runners at the finish line for a Party on the Square with live entertainment, the 1st annual cornhole tournament, food, and refreshments. Ticket required.

Chalk Walk
April 30: Downtown sidewalks become the canvas for professional and student artists during this street painting festival. Street painting is thought to have originated in 16th century Italy. The Dogwood Arts Festival brings this event to Knoxville as a way to teach and promote the history of this lost art in a community setting. This year, original work by participating Chalk Walk artists will be available for $30.

Art Source
May 6-27: The talents and dedication of Knox County Schools' art instructors take the spotlight at this exhibition. The exhibition has greatly increased awareness of the importance of art education in Knox County, and the goal of Art Source is to provide the visual evidence of these endeavors. UT Downtown Gallery – 106 South Gay Street

Most of the Festival's wide range of arts events, performances, and exhibitions are offered to the public free of charge. Without the support of community volunteers, patrons, corporate, and media partners, a festival of this magnitude would not be possible!

For more information, a complete Festival Calendar of Events, and ticket information, visit or call 865-637-4561.

Published Apil 1, 2011

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