Peter Anderson arts & crafts festival: the largest arts festival in Mississippi and the Gulf Coast! artists, crafters, and food vendors from all over the united states!

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The largest fine arts festival in Mississippi
The Peter Anderson Arts & Crafts Festival was created to honor master potter, Peter Anderson, original potter of Shearwater Pottery, founded in 1928, and to celebrate the arts community. The festival aids in the economic development and growth of what has become Ocean Springs today. Our mission is to increase the public awareness of our local artists, shops, and restaurants and to create opportunities for artists, business development and welcoming quality of life for residents and visitors alike as we share in the Creative Economy. “Festival season” begins in late August and runs through the two-day event set the first weekend in November each year. The season includes the opening of the application process, kick-off events, pre-parties, pre-festival t-shirt sales, blue moon art project contest and much more. The festival is presented by Blue Moon via F.E.B. Distributing.

The Peter Anderson Arts & Crafts Festival began as a small celebration by a group of local artists and art enthusiasts. It has grown to one of the Southeast’s premier arts and crafts festivals. Last year’s crowd was estimated at 150,000 people with more than 400 artists, crafters, and food booths. The festival set up shop along the downtown streets beneath the live oaks and surrounded by locally owned shops, restaurants, and galleries. The festival is also something of a street party with food, music and many specials offered by business and restaurant owners. With dedication and hard work from an army of volunteers, it has grown from those humble beginnings.
In 1978 Klara Koock, a local artist, approached Betty Godwin-Walker, chamber director at that time, with the idea for an arts festival. The two discussed the idea with Ann Allen, chamber president, who presented it to the board of directors.
Fifty-six booths lined the chamber’s old cinderblock parking lot that the first year, recalled Margaret Anderson, Peter Anderson’s daughter-in-law and guiding force for the festival’s first 26 years. “When we started out, it was mostly to get the local artists to come out and show their wares,” she said. “It went really well.”

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