The History of Monte Sano Art Festival

 

The Monte Sano Art Show originated in 1999 when Debra Simpson, an artist residing in the Monte Sano Community, wished to establish a show in an outdoor setting that would be similar to those found at Plum Nelly and the Kentuck Festival. With a group of friends, Debra made plans for the first show which was held on October 30, 1999 in the parking lot of the Monte Sano Assessment and Enrichment Center at 820 Monte Sano Blvd. with approximately thirty (30) artists participating. With those same friends and a few others recruited over the years, Debra and her friends have generously volunteered their time and energy to make this one of the best outdoor art shows in the area for artists and visitors alike. The current setting in Monte Sano State Park is magnificent, the art is incredible and the show is well organized.

Each year artists are invited to return and new artists are invited. A selection panel reviews all entries on the basis of three recent photos or slides representing the type of work the artist wishes to exhibit. Beginning in 2016, artists will apply through Zapplication. A wide diversity of artists and media are exhibited. Commercial kits, molds, etc., may not be exhibited.

Autumn in the Tennessee Valley is always a challenge for forecasters. We have held the Monte Sano Art Show in a variety of weather conditions, from fog, to cold, and even a light drizzle. But, the weather has never dampened the spirit of our volunteers, artists or attendees.

Timeline

  • The 2nd Annual Monte Sano Arts & Crafts Show, October 28, 2000 at the Monte Sano Club and Pool
  • The 3rd Annual Monte Sano Arts & Crafts Show, was held Saturday, October 27,2001 at the Monte Sano Club and Pool, 3603 Georgetta on a beautiful fall day with golden leaves covering the ground
  • The 4th Annual Monte Sano Art Show was held Saturday, October 26,2002, at the Monte Sano Club and Pool in spite of a light rain and cold weather.
  • The 5th Annual Monte Sano Art Show was held Saturday, September 20, 2003, at the Monte Sano Club and Pool on a beautiful summer-like day.
  • The 6th Annual Monte Sano Art Show was held Saturday, September 19, 2004 at Monte Sano State Park with over 100 artists participating.
  • The 7th Annual Monte Sano Art Show was held Saturday, September 18, 2005 at Monte Sano State Park with over 110 artists participating.
  • The 8th Annual Art Show, held September 16, 2006, with over 130 participating artists.
  • The 9th Annual Art Show, held September 15, 2007, with over 150 participants.
  • The 10th Annual Art Show was held September 20th, 2008 with over 165 participants.
  • The 11th Annual Art Show held 19 September, and was plagued by rain. We had over 160 artists registered to participate with only a few who opted not to show. Many of our artists had their most successful show ever, selling all of the pieces.
  • The 12th Annual Art Show was held September 18th, 2010… It was a gorgeous day with a record attendance!
  • In 2014, the 15th festival was held September 20, 2014 in Monte Sano State Park.
  • In 2015, the 16th festival was held September 19, 2015 in Monte Sano State Park with 143 artists in attendance.
  • Also, in 2015, Arts Huntsville assumed management of the festival in partnership with dedicated festival volunteers.
  • In 2016, the Festival will become a two day show!

We have held the show at Monte Sano State Park since 2005 and look forward to continuing that wonderful tradition. The park provides the perfect setting for a fabulous fall weekend of art.