riverssance-picThe Riverssance Fine Arts Festival is bringing a river of art back into the Quad-Cities.

MidCoast Fine Arts’ Riverssance Festival of Fine Art is celebrating its 29th year as the premier fine arts festival of the Quad Cities, showcasing over 100 of the top artists from throughout North America.  Taking place 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 17 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 18 in Lindsay Park in the Village of East Davenport, Riverssance is located on a scenic hill overlooking the Mississippi River. The event will feature a free children’s art tent, wine tasting, gourmet food and live regional music booked by the River Music Experience.  MidCoast Fine Arts serves area artists and the Quad Cities community throughout the year with a myriad of exhibition opportunities designed to help arts promote and sell their work without commission.  Artists helping artists is what the organization is all about.

The recipient of the Harley Award given in recognition of an individual(s) or organization that has demonstrated a lasting commitment to the promotion and the advancement of the visual arts and artists in the Quad Cities area is Mary Ellen Chamberlin, former president of the Riverboat Development Authority. Ms. Chamberlin has volunteered extensively in the Quad Cities Community touching all aspects of our community.  As RDA president, she worked to make available grant funding to the arts community providing opportunities for artists, students and non-profit agencies supporting the arts to continue their work.  This outreach is responsible for supporting the many avenues of visual arts available to this community. The award recognizes her 25 years as president of the Riverboat Development Authority, and its important cultural largesse. The award will be presented on Saturday, Sept. 17, at 12:30 p.m.

The featured design for the Festival is based on the work Earth Changes by Scot Schmidt.  The design will be the basis for this year’s promotional artwork and t-shirts. The artist resides in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.  His trademark medium is limestone material. Discovering this medium has drastically changed his artwork and pushed him to new creative heights.  His creativity with this artwork and medium opens the doors to both the arts and sciences.  The connection between art, the earth and earthen materials is a connection that broadens educational learning for both children and adults.  Scot’s art is an expression of feeling and individuality.

With so many schools and communities reducing their art dollars for education this Festival is one way to continue to promote and provide accessibility to fine arts to everyone.  Additionally it is a wonderful event for our community.  Learn more at http://midcoast.org/Riverssance  or contact (563) 424-1210.


Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.