Thomas Jefferson

High School | Home of the Spartans

Let the Festivities Begin

Posted 12/09/2015 by Cecelia Allen

Local artists get to showcase and sell their wares at TJ’s Artfest, just in time for the holidays.

On Saturday, December 12th, from 9:00 to 4:00, TJ will host its annual Artfest. Going into its 27th year, the show will feature handcrafted artwork from many different artists, and will provide an opportunity for TJ students, parents, and faculty to interact with and support the community surrounding TJ.

Originally known as the Craft Fair, TJ recently changed the name to Artfest which more accurately describes the products being sold as well as the artistic vendors. TJ parent Kathryn Lepry is the leader and organizer behind the new design. A wide variety of holiday gifts will be sold at the Artfest, including baked goods, homemade jams, and honey, as well as handcrafted clothes such as hats or scarves. Vendors will also sell artwork and homemade crafts. Paired with Artfest is a used book sale held in TJ’s cafeteria. At this used book sale, one can find not only books but secondhand CD’s, video tapes, and DVDs as well.

The Artfest is the biggest fundraiser of the year for TJ’s PTO, which sponsors the event. The money is raised from vendor booth fees and vendor donations. Therefore, as Lepry puts it, “the better the vendors do, the better we do.” TJ’s PTO also receives a majority of the money earned from the used book sale. Word of the new and improved event has spread quickly, and this year’s participation is set to break records. Most participants are local, so purchases will support local businesses, artisans, and entrepreneurs. One of the vendors happens to be drama teacher Michael Palmieri, who will be selling his photography.

Although funds go to TJ Partners, the money eventually goes back to improving TJ and helping students and teachers. Artfest funds teacher grants, student incentives, and student activities such as the Backyard Bash and more. Buying items at the Artfest helps support not only local artists and businesses, but TJ as well. TJ Partners hopes for another great year of support from the TJ community.

Why fight crowds and parking at the mall only to buy gifts that are uninspired and unoriginal? Come join friends at TJ’s Artfest and find the perfect gifts while enjoying the spirit of the holidays.