Thomas Jefferson

High School | Home of the Spartans

Spartans HeART the Holidays

Posted 12/06/2017 by Madeleine Abram

artwork by Kathryn Lepry

The annual TJ ArtFest will resurface once again on Saturday, December 9th.

Twentieth century artist Pablo Picasso once stated, “Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.” This quote holds to be prevalent in modern day life. On Saturday, December 9th, from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm, the TJ community will have the opportunity to experience various forms of art during the 29th annual ArtFest.

This year, the festival will resurface with an abundance of new components. While the traditional favorites of the ArtFest will remain, this year’s committee is offering various new forms of engagement including an annexed art show in the cafeteria, featuring artwork from surrounding elementary schools. Additionally, the TJ Art Show will feature work from TJ’s very own CCT department, spearheaded by photography teacher Will Forrester, along with work from 65-75 other vendors, who will be set up in the gym.

Four time TJ Art Fest organizer Kathryn Lepry explained, “Every year, we strive to make the show bigger, better, and more enjoyable for shoppers and vendors alike.” Lepry has been participating as a vendor in art fairs for years, however it wasn’t until her involvement with organizing the Southmoor Elementary Art Fair (We Heart Art) that she realized her passion for the organization side of art festivals. “I love the excitement of the show itself and the relationships I’ve built with many vendors around town. The creative community of ‘makers’ in Denver is vibrant, and ever-growing. It’s inspiring to see what these people are creating and the locally-based businesses they are growing,” Lepry continued.

The TJ ArtFest boasts a multitude of different activities and events, including the appearance of Santa Claus and his elf entourage between 2:00 and 4:00 pm, a Sam’s #3 Chili Lunch hosted by Skills USA, and decadent hot chocolate and coffee beverages offered by Rambling Bean. Additionally, festival-goers will be immediately greeted with a warm welcome from the fire pit warming area at the main entrance, as well as a mini tree lot where local Optimist Club members will be selling live evergreen wreaths and trees. Within the ArtFest, shoppers can expect to encounter works from local artists, photographers (including TJ students, Forrester, and TJ drama teacher Michael Palmieri), sculptors, and more. Local artisans will be selling everything from delicious holiday treats and small-batch organic eats to homemade soaps and scents. While parents are shopping, little ones can enjoy fun, supervised activities and play in the KidZone.

While the old traditions will remain intact, this year’s 29th annual Art Fest is sure to bring an abundance of fun, new traditions to TJ community. Students and staff are highly encouraged to attend this festive event, or better yet, volunteer to help manage the festivities. Prospective volunteers can find more information in regards to this event on the sign-up genius here.