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BRAWLEY — Enjoy a leisurely stroll through Plaza Park with its open air gallery when the 30th annual Brawley Fine Arts and Craft Festival returns from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

January 23, 2001

The downtown park surrounding the library provides the setting for the annual exhibition.

Sponsored by the Brawley Chamber of Commerce, the free event will feature a variety of handmade wares, from paintings to sculptures to jewelry and woodwork. In addition to shopping for home decor, specialty items and gifts, families can enjoy strolling through the Plaza Park and chatting with many artists, from California, New Mexico, Nevada, Arizona, Colorado and Oregon.

"We always look forward to Art in the Park because it not only gives residents and visitors access to high-quality art and outdoor fun but also showcases our wonderful array of downtown businesses," said Cindy Stillman, executive director of the Brawley Chamber of Commerce.

Joining the acclaimed artists will be Joseph Goddard of Ridgecrest, whose specialty is solid hand sculptures. Using a molding process, Goddard makes plaster sculptures of customer hands on location, with each finished product detailed all the way to the fingerprints. After 12 years in the business, Goddard has built a following of customers around the country and received awards for his unique memory art.

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Showcasing his collection of coasters displaying original photographs will be David McLaughlin of San Miguel. McLaughlin enjoys photographing scenes along the California coast, the High Sierra, the natural beauty of flowers and fine Western scenery.

Expanding on his utilitarian dinnerware ceramics, C.J. Christianson of Cathedral City will feature his whimsical and colorful day flower arrangements on vases. After recently retiring to the desert, Christianson has applied his newly acquired appreciation for the desert to his lifetime passion.

Other artists include Kim Osgood (watercolor) of Palm Springs, Marilyn and Tim Downs (jewelry) of Drain, Ore., Ron and Karen Griese (woodwork) of Mohawk Valley, Ariz., Sharisse Rogers (glasswork) of Wildomar.

For more information call the Brawley chamber at 344-3160 or the Pacific Fine Art Festivals at (209) 296-1195.

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