Dover Artsyfest lets kids paint the town

Serena Stachecki-Pelletier, right, owner of Artsy Fartsy in Dover, joins friends, artists and other downtown merchants to celebrate the announcement of Saturday’s first Artsyfest 2015 at the downtown business. (Submitted photo)

Serena Stachecki-Pelletier, right, owner of Artsy Fartsy in Dover, joins friends, artists and other downtown merchants to celebrate the announcement of Saturday’s first Artsyfest 2015 at the downtown business. (Submitted photo)

DOVER — Saturday’s first Artsyfest 2015, a kid-centered art festival hosted by downtown Dover’s Artsy Fartsy, is aimed to provide a platform for kids to get involved in the arts.

“Kids spend so much time watching TV and playing video games that not all of them have been exposed to art before and I think them seeing other kids being artistic may inspire them,” said Serena Pelletier-Stachecki, owner of Artsy Fartsy.

Kids between kindergarten through 12th grade are invited to attend the event from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be more than craft opportunities; some child artists will be selling their wares, ranging from hair ties to sculptures and others will be performing songs and dances.

“When kids see what other people their age can do, no matter the type of art, I think it will give them the confidence to try it and say to themselves, ‘if they can do it, I can do it too,’” Ms. Pelletier-Stachecki said.

Performers include the Dover High Jazz Band and Drum Line, Dover’s Dance Conservatory, Rigby Karate and B&B Music, which will have instruments on display for kids to see and try out.

“We want to inspire kids to try different types of arts. Not all children have the opportunity or means to explore their creativity through different venues. This is one way that they can feel free to experiment and become inspired in a free, safe and fun atmosphere,” Ms. Pelletier-Stachecki said.

Many downtown merchants will be offering free crafts for children attending the festival as well, like painting on canvas bags, plates and flower pots.

Artsy Fartsy’s attention on kids’ creativity extends past this single event.

“I was diagnosed with cancer and decided that life is short and I wanted to do something I loved,” Ms. Pelletier-Stachecki said. “I like teaching adults but I have kids and love working with young people too.”

The studio works with children as young as 3 in art classes on paintings, crafts and “funramics” (decorating pre-made ceramic items).

“As long as they know their shapes, we have a good place to start,” Ms. Pelletier-Stachecki said.

Aside from the art-covered walls, even the tables in the studio are beautifully painted.

“I want the kids to have fun and not worry about being messy or getting paint on the tables so I went ahead and put paint on them first,”

The studio even has a “Parent Time-Out” spot for parents who get a little too involved in their kids’ work.

“We want to make sure that the kids’ work is always their own and they don’t get any outside influences and aren’t told anything negative about their art,” she said.

“It should be a creative outlet for the kids and they should make whatever they think is beautiful while keeping their self-confidence up.”

Artsy Fartsy is at 32 W. Loockerman St. For more information about Artsy Fartsy or Artsyfest 2015, call 359-3452 or visit the studio’s Facebook page.

Reach staff writer Ashton Brown at abrown@newszap.com. Follow @AshtonReports on Twitter.

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