by Eva Potter
Once again, the Routes to Art open-studio artists’ tour, which took place last weekend, drew a multitude of local residents, as well as visitors from other states and Canada, who came to explore the artistic side of Cattaraugus County.
Forty-five regional artists opened their studios to visitors and invited them in for a chat and to view their original works of art. Eight new artists in the Olean-Allegany area added new depth to this year’s tour sponsored by the Cattaraugus County Arts Council.
“We thought overall the tour was great … the artists were ready and eager to show their hard work. The media coverage we received was outstanding, and the comments we received verbally during the weekend from visitors were overwhelmingly positive,” said Anne Conroy-Baiter, executive director of CCAC.
Courtney Blackmon, CCAC’s programs & grants manager for CCAC, and Heather Carroll, CCAC’s AmeriCorps membership & outreach coordinator, thoroughly enjoyed the tour. They said it was a great way to see many of the artists in their personal workspaces and hub locations.
While it is too early to predict attendance numbers, CCAC staff spoke with people from Canada, Ohio, Chicago and Pittsburgh, indicating widespread interest in the weekend event.
Conroy-Baiter said, “Judging from the outstanding number of hits on both our websites and Facebook page, we anticipate the numbers to be up.”
Once CCAC enters attendance data, they will announce the winners of the three original pieces of art donated by Robin Zefers Clark, Lisa Conklin and Kristina McLeod. Winners will be posted at www.routestoart.com.
CCAC is grateful for the regional support of this and other events, including the upcoming Cause for Celebration Raffle on July 14 and Art in the Park on July 29.