Posted: June 7, 2012 Artists add new flare to Phoenix Park gathering
By Blythe Wachter Leader Telegram staff
Open for the first time, the Artist Market of Eau Claire drew Raymond and Gena Kaselau to Phoenix Park Saturday morning, May 19.
Raymond, 34, and Gena Kaselau, 33, often go to Country Lane farmers market in Barron, liking the festival-like mix of food, art, crafts, toys, clothing and other items.
But Saturday they came with their 2-year-old son, Everson, to Eau Claire's downtown farmers market, wanting to see the nearby artists' booths.
Jamie Kyser and Erin Roesler, co-owners of Tangled Up In Hue, a downtown Eau Claire art collective shop, decided to sponsor the bimonthly artist market in conjunction with the farmers market.
"This is fabulous. I'm really glad Tangled Up In Hue took the initiative to get this going," said Raymond Kaselau, an artist who plans to participate.
At one of the eight booths, Kyser and Roesler sold everything from cloth billfolds to glass, stone and silver-spoon pendants to owl drawings.
"Everyone we've overheard is happy to see us here and that more is happening in Phoenix Park," Kyser said.
The farmers market has featured a few artists' booths each season, and Kyser and Roesler have participated in that. But they wanted to start a venue so more artists could display and sell their work.
"We thought there was a need for it in the community," Kyser said.
Robert Romanshek of Eau Claire, owner of Riverglass Jewelry and Metals, sold custom-made silver rings and necklaces at the artist market.
"It's wonderful for all the local artists. It gives them an opportunity to show off their talents. Artists are the soul of the city," Romanshek said.
Tracy Wurzer, 39, of Strum said she hopes more artists will participate.
"I think it's good for the local artists to have a place to come and show their work," Wurzer said.
Only a few artists had wares at the farmers market, which was "kind of just teasing you," said Merey Price, 64, of Eau Claire as she browsed for any "must-have" items.
"I think it's a great idea," Price said of having the farmers market and artist market next to each other. "It's a great match."
What: Artist Market of Eau Claire.
When: 7:30 a.m.-1 p.m. the first and third Saturdays of each month, into October.
Where: Riverfront Terrace, between the Phoenix Park pavilion and the RCU building, on the north end of downtown.