Discover an Artist's Haven in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach

Sure, you're in Gulf Shores and Orange Beach for sun and sand. But if you haven't checked out the art scene, you're missing a great piece of coastal culture.

From glass blowing to pottery and folk arts to fine art, you’ll find something for every taste when you visit the Alabama Gulf Coast. You may even be able to watch a demonstration or take part in an art lesson during your beach vacation.

If you’re planning a trip to the beach this spring or early summer, consider traveling during one of the art events slated for early 2019.

Fresh on the event calendar this year is Ballyhoo. The early-spring event promises to be just as fun as its name suggests. The one-day celebration combines fine arts with the cultural charm of the Alabama Gulf Coast. More than 50 fine artists will display their works, and when you’re not browsing the selections, catch a performance by the Poarch Band of Creek Indians in tribal costume. In addition, there will be a Ballyhoo dance contest, live music and children’s activities. Ballyhoo will be held at Waterway Village in Gulf Shores.

Make a weekend of it and attend the 45th Annual Festival of Art March 9 and 10 at the Coastal Arts Center in Orange Beach. The weekend will be packed with coastal culinary creations, performing arts, watercolorists, sculptors, painters, potters, glass artists and more. There will also be a Kid’s Art Alley for budding artists to find their inspiration.

The Waterway Village Art Market, presented by the Gulf Coast Arts Alliance, will be held this summer. Browse creations by local and regional artists while enjoying live music. A trackless train and hands-on art activities will be available for children.

If you’re itching to get your own hands dirty, schedule a time on the potter’s wheel at The Clay Studio or blow glass at The Hot Shop. Both are located at the Coastal Arts Center. Those interested in textiles can schedule time on the loom at Clara’s Loom and Coastal Textile Center.

Woman Making Pottery in Orange Beach AL

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