The 25th Sooke Fine Arts Show is opening on July 23 for a 10-day run.

Sooke Fine Arts Show celebrates 25 years

10-day run for juried show and sale

The Sooke Fine Arts Show turns a quarter of a century old this week, and is celebrating the milestone in style.

Along with showcasing hundreds of pieces of art from local Vancouver Island and Gulf Islands artists, there are several special anniversary events planned, said Sally Manning, chairwoman of the Sooke Fine Arts Society.

The district donated grant money to the society to produce a video called “It’s About the People,” that will be playing for the duration of the show. The video features interviews with people behind the show including some of the original show designers.

“It was made by (local artist) Kay Lovett. It’s a 15-minute film that is going to be shown in a special area in the gallery — we’re calling it the retropod,” said Manning.

Another addition this year is still a work in progress. Designed by volunteer and artist Norene Schmuck as well as Lovett, it’s a “community affair” where anyone can drop by and add little pieces of broken coloured pottery pieces to contribute to the finished product.

“It’s built by anyone that wants to participate in it.”

July 26 is designated as “Toonie Tuesday,” — from 6 p.m. until 8 admission is only $2. There will also be a special musical performance by the Sooke River Bluegrass Music Festival Society.

A regular event that Manning urged people not to miss is the purchasers’ preview night held on July 21 from 7 p.m. until 10.  Tickets are $25 each and it is “an opportunity for people to get a preview of the show and purchase art previous to the show starting,” said Manning.

This is the fifth year that the fine arts show has been run by the Sooke Fine Arts Society, and is expected to draw over 7,500 visitors over the 10 days of the show from July 23 to August 1.

The show runs 10 a.m. until 8 p.m. every day except for B.C. Day ending at 5 p.m. Tickets are $8 for adults, $7 for seniors and free for kids 12 and under.  For the show schedule and detailed information see the special pull-out section in this week’s paper or visit www.sookefinearts.com.