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The Taneycomo Arts Picnic will be held at Chad A. Fuqua Memorial Park in Hollister on Friday, June 18.

The public is invited to picnic in the park while being surrounded by art and world class music. 

The Taneycomo Arts Picnic will take place 4-9 p.m. on Friday, June 18, at Chad A. Fuqua Memorial Park in Hollister. 

This event, sponsored by the Taneycomo Festival Orchestra and the Southern Missouri Arts Connection, will feature world-class music and local artists’ and artisans’ booths, along with food and ice cream vendors, according to a press release from SMAC.  

This is the second Taneycomo Arts Picnic to take place. The hope is to make it an annual event. The first one held was in 2019, and last year’s event was canceled due to COVID-19, according to SMAC President Tenille Blair-Neff.

“We hope to bring it back every year, and every year it (will) grow a little bit more,” Blair-Neff said. 

Blair-Neff explained that the Taneycomo Arts Picnic was started to be a collaboration between SMAC and the TFO. 

“We just decided it would be really fun to do a concert in the park in Hollister and also have an art fair to bring people out into that park because it is a beautiful park,” Blair-Neff said. “We wanted to see more events happening there so we collaborated and created this event.”

According to the release, attendees can expect to see the art fair with a wide variety of booths featuring local artists and artisans, food trucks, and music performed by the TFO during the evening.

“We will have 12 artists with booths that will be showing and selling their works,” Blair-Neff said. “The SMAC booth will be there doing face painting, live painting and henna painting for the community. There will be No.1 Tacos, the taco (food) truck, will be onsite to serve up some food. We will also have Brian’s Brain Freeze (food truck) to give us something sweet and cold, because it can be pretty hot in the afternoon. Then around 7 p.m. the Taneycomo Festival Orchestra will come and perform works by Montgomery, Bach, and Mendelssohn until about 9 p.m. It is a free live concert. 

“The TFO is made up of musicians from all over the country. It is a chance for our local community to hear world class music from masters and doctoral level musicians.”

Blair-Neff said her favorite part of the Arts picnic is having people out at the park enjoying the arts. 

“I lived in New York for 13 years and we hung out in Central park all the time and went to concerts in the park,” Blair-Neff said. “It was such a fun thing for the community. It is really nice to see everybody out in the park, listening to music, eating food, and looking at art. 

“To me, that is what I would love to see more of in our community.”

According to the release, the community is invited to bring their lawn chairs or blankets from home to sit on the lawn to enjoy art, food and music. 

“We don’t have any seating, so you can spread out a blanket to watch the concert,” Blair-Neff said. “Grab your lawn chairs, you may want to grab the bug spray just in case. We want the community to come out and picnic in the park.”

Look for a story on the Taneycomo Festival Orchestra in a future edition of the Branson Tri-Lakes News.

For more information visit smac-art.org.

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