Bull Thistle Arts Festival

13.) Bull Thistle Arts Festival – Fayette – August 1, 2015

What's YOUR vote on this festival?
[Total: 4 Average: 1.5]
*********************************************

*********************************************

The (Royal) Bull Thistle Arts Festival began shortly after the Village of Fayette celebrated the nation’s bicentennial in 1976 and realized that festivals were a good thing for a community to have.

Unfortunately, they had a bit of difficulty when it came down to figuring what kind of festival it should be.

Then, according to local art teacher Tom Spiess (as per the Village of Fayette’s website), the following happened…

There was “an ongoing discussion at the coffee shop between two local men. One man was Herb Woodard, the owner/editor of the local Newspaper, The Fayette Review, and the other was Jim Marlatt, one of the town’s attorneys. These two often had coffee together and both were armed with a lively wit and an appreciation for the absurdities of life. They had listened to several farmers, who also liked to drink coffee and ‘story’ at the restaurant, complain about the thistles and how these pesky plants made farming difficult. They picked up on this conversation and speculated on the positive possibilities of the Bull Thistle plant. The good natured conversation and their enjoyment of ‘shooting the Bull’, so to speak, coupled with Tom’s aim for an arts festival brought about the suggestion for a Bull Thistle Arts Festival. Herb and Jim added the Royal embellishment to the name and the rest is history” (Village of Fayette).

Although Herb and Jim have since passed…

…the festival continued in a park just northeast of Eagle Street (I needed to ask directions).

At the entrance, I found the entries of a bull thistle competition…

…where plants were judged in such categories as height…

…girth…

…and the number of blossoms.

Beyond that, bull thistles were primarily seen as the subject of artistic postcards…

…or paintings (Bean Creek Artists).

But, if that wasn’t your thing, artists and craftspeople sold works that included painted furniture…

…etched wooden portraits…

…string images (Genna Biddix)…

…crocheted gifts…

…and homemade goat milk soaps.

Kids could take advantage of the park’s playground…

…while the festival also offered a variety of games and prizes.

Meanwhile, some entertainment for all ages included face caricatures…

…musical performances…

…and an athletic competition…

…of some serious arm-wrestling.

Even the kids took part.

Food booths, such as this chicken dinner stand, were sometimes difficult to recognize from a distance…

…although a few had signs that helped clarify what they offered.

But, if you were attentive, you would notice this very popular milkshake booth put on by the Fayette United Methodist Church

…and the Fayette Arts Council‘s booth offering…

 …of the Bull Thistle Burger.

How could anyone pass up a hamburger coupled with a sausage patty…

…especially when there was also bull thistle sauce on the condiments table?

It was definitely a nice finish to the festival.

*********************************************

*********************************************