Scout Your Art Festival Route – Watch the Downtown Transformation Friday Night

It’s almost here folks!  The 41st Annual Mount Dora Arts Festival.

The downtown will transform Friday evening, beginning at 4:00 p.m., as the artists begin to set up their wares.  Streets will close, caravans of art will arrive, tents will be set up, and the beehive of activity will begin in earnest.

Downtown restaurants and wine shops are open for business on Friday evening, and they make a great vantage point from which to watch the excitement.  Just stick to the sidewalks and keep the roadways clear for artists and volunteers. If you just want to stroll through and watch the fun, you can bring your pooch along on Friday evening – but over the weekend, during the event, remember – NO DOGS are allowed at the Arts Festival.

If you go downtown Friday evening, the Mount Dora Center for the Arts says the best place to park is at the 5th Avenue parking lot across from the Methodist Church – you can certainly park elsewhere, but in any case, just make sure you park outside of the event area and mind the temporary “No Parking” signs on adjacent neighborhood streets.  ALL PUBLIC PARKING LOTS WITHIN THE EVENT AREA (SHOWN BELOW) WILL BE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC AT 4:00 ON FRIDAY.

By about 10:00 Friday evening, the artists will be ready for showtime!  The 41st Annual Mount Dora Arts Festival is open on Saturday and Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  And, when you wake up to come downtown on Monday morning, it will all just be a wonderful memory.

2016 Arts Fest Map
Layout of the event area that delineates artist and vendor parking areas and shows the “load-in” schedule

The show will feature over 285 artists  – with 122 Florida artists and 10 artists who are from our own backyard, from Mount Dora and Eustis.  There are 32 Lake County artists included in all.

Judges this year are: Mark Price, Professor at UCF School of Visual Arts and Design;  Ann Larsen, Director of the Leepa-Rattner Museum of Art; and Richard Colvin, Executive Director at Lake Eustis Museum of Art

There will be over 150 volunteers working the setup, breakdown, information, parking, and booth sitting over the course of the weekend.

A few tips for attendees over the weekend:

  • All artists take credit cards & cash, some may take checks as well.
  • There will be four ATM machines available, if you need cash. (There is a charge associated with using those.)
  • Want to learn more about the art you’re seeing?  “Get Art Smart” seminars will be held. Two art consultants will be giving free seminars on the type of art shown in the festival.
  • Best places to park are at the “Park and Ride” shuttle stops located at the following locations:
    • Mount Dora Christian Academy – off of Donnelly Street
    • Mount Dora High School – off of Highland Street
    • The Golden Triangle Shopping Center – just outside of town on Old Hwy 441
  • Handicap parking is first come, first served – it is limited, but available at these locations:
    • The parking lot behind City Hall
    • The parking lot at the corner of 5th Avenue and Alexander
  • Your favorite downtown shops, restaurants and watering holes will be open throughout the event.

Now, let’s all go forward to support the arts in Mount Dora, see you at the festival!


Melissa DeMarco, Editor (