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City Council member to oversee artists' market for Williams Park

The market will be on Saturdays starting in December.

By CHRISTINA SILVA, Times Staff Writer
Published November 4, 2007


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ST. PETERSBURG- The city's reputation as an art destination is getting another boost.

City Council member Leslie Curran, an art gallery owner, said she will oversee an artists' market at Williams Park beginning in December.

The market is part of an ongoing effort to reclaim Williams Park, which in recent years has grown into an unsightly public space crammed with abandoned shopping carts and bags of clothing. Many of the city's ever-growing homeless population call the park home.

"The idea is to use the park again," said Curran, owner of Interior Motives, an art gallery and design business on Central Avenue. "A lot of people won't use it, and there are homeless people who are there, but you know, we can all coexist."

Williams Park "is the centerpiece of the city," she added.

The market would be held Saturday mornings to complement the existing farmer's market along Central Avenue, Curran said. So far, more than 25 artists have signed up to participate in the inaugural market.

Curran said she applied for a permit to use the park and will personally cover the insurance expenses for the event.

A mosaic of glass pieces, paintings, pottery and jewelry will be featured at the market, she said.

Art lovers will also be able to take part in the recently expanded Second Saturday Gallery Walk, a long-standing activity downtown that spans more than 30 galleries.

Starting this week, gallery walk participants can ride the Looper Trolley for free during the tour, instead of walking and driving from each location. The Downtown Arts Association, which organizes the tours, is also reaching out to restaurants to provide discounted meals to participants.

"We want to pull the community a little bit more together," said Sue Cooper Street, president of the Downtown Arts Association.

Cristina Silva can be reached at 727 893-8846 or csilva@sptimes.com.

[Last modified November 3, 2007, 21:44:34]


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