Alexander Kriksciun …. On Saturday, October 15th, Vista Village was home to more than five thousand people and over a thousand art pieces. The annual celebration, which is now entering its thirteenth year, had at least one entry from every school in the district, and held twenty eight live performances, from groups such as MVHS Steel Drums, the RBVHS Wind Ensemble 1, and Vista High’s Ballet Folklorico, along with many other groups from high schools, middle schools, and elementary schools.
Nick Wheat, the choir director at RBVHS, loved the sense of community generated by the event. When asked what his favorite part of the festival was, he commented, “to look out and see all these people from the community, my friends, my colleagues, young ones, even members from the other choirs, it’s really special…These people came out to see and us and other groups, and it’s a warm feeling.” RBVHS Choir has an upcoming winter concert on December 6th and 7th, which is a short program, designed to brighten the holidays for anyone looking for holiday cheer.
This sentiment was shared by many others who were at the event, such as Eric Weirather, the Director of the RBVHS Rhythm of The Ranch Marching Band. He loved seeing, “the parents come out to support the kids…It’s great to see the community supporting music, art, and art advocacy”. The RBVHS Marching Band has a tournament on Saturday, October 22nd, at RBVHS.
Laura Versaci, a representative for Vista Magnet Middle School, was helping to run a display which displayed art pieces from middle schoolers. Some of the pieces were for class assignments, but many were done on the students’ own time, as a passion project. She remarked that she loved seeing, “her friends, her former students, the students helping out in the community”. She also helped VMMS run their student activity center, where people were welcome to create lunch bag puppets; many schools held these booths, with unique options at each.
David Hanlon, an avid arts supporter and leader of the Character Leaders program at VHS, has gone to every year of the Vista Arts Festival. He praises the event for the variety, as people are able to artists from kindergarten, to those who are much older, the ones that come from high school. “You’re able to see everyone, regardless of skill level or experience,” he remarked, a large smile on his face as music filled the background.
Anne Fennell, who doubles as a music teacher at MVHS and the Coordinator of the Festival of The Arts, has grown the MVHS Steel Drum ensemble into over 150 people; The Steel Drum Ensemble has played at a variety of locations, and have been visited by the presidents of a wide variety of music instruments. When asked about the uniqueness of the event, she said, it’s the one day where, “child touches community and community touches child…there’s nothing more beautiful than seeing a little child by their artwork, standing so proud…seeing their parents acknowledge their creativity…”.
The festival, which has just seen its largest turnout yet, will return next year.