Bringing the Community Together

By Marah J. Morrison

This July, the Summer Festival of the Arts will once again be putting local art on display. The early application due date for the event is April 3 along with the fee of $20.

Lori A. Factor, director of Community Engagement and Events for the College of Creative Arts and Communications and manager of the SFA, said that the applicants have to submit images of their artwork and what their booth is going to look like that are reviewed by jurors in a variety of different ways.

“This is a community engagement event so anyone is welcome to apply, although not all artists who apply are accepted,” Factor said. “This is a juried event.”

Angela DeLucia, assistant director of the John J. McDonough Museum of Art and an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Art, has served as a juror in this event and is always on the lookout for very unique handmade things.

“The goal that we have when choosing is to try and have a variety of materials represented and have both functional and decorative works,” DeLucia said. “We want to choose artists and have things that are handmade and unique so that people have an opportunity to buy something that they cannot find in the store.”

The SFA accepts all sorts of art, including photography, sculpture, painting, jewelry, wood and metal working or weaving.

Tony Armeni, a 3D Foundations and Sculpture instructor at YSU, has been a participant in this festival and highly encourages it for anyone.

“I recommend this event to anybody that wants to get their work out and that’s interested in selling their work,” Armeni said. “It’s a great way to interact with the public and it gives us a weekend to come out and visit one another and interact.”

Factor stated that this event is not only enormous because it contributes to a great deal of other events going on during the same weekend and time, but having the significant collaborations is crucial. Factor stated that some people will stop at the SFA, go and grab something to eat at the Greek Festival or stop at some of the events that are going on downtown, and return to the SFA.

“Having the collaboration between the city of Youngstown, Saint Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church and the Mahoning County Convention Visitors Bureau is really important to us because we want to make this a weekend destination,” Factor said.

DeLucia said that this event brings many new faces to Youngstown, which gives people who normally aren’t around the chance to see the impressive institutions on campus, such as The Butler Institute of American Art or the John J. McDonough Museum of Art.

The Summer Festival of the Arts will be held on July 8 – 9 of this year. For more information about applying for the festival and or planning to visit over the summer, go to or contact Lori A. Factor.