8th Annual Moss Rock Festival

The 8th Annual Moss Rock Festival was held at The Preserve in Hoover, Alabama, November 2-3, 2013. This was Andy's second time to participate in the Moss Rock Festival, the first time in 2011. (He was supposed to go last year, but something came up at the last minute.) The Preserve is a classic American neighborhood in Hoover, just south of Birmingham. The 300-acre community adjoins the 250-acre Moss Rock Preserve, with miles of hiking trails through unspoiled forests. It's gorgeous and every house within it is my dream home. If not for our white sand beaches and turquoise Gulf waters, I would have already packed our belongings and moved.


The Moss Rock Festival's web site describes the event as follows: 100 juried artists will be exhibiting on 3 Artist Rows surrounding The Preserve’s Village Green. Artwork from these artists is primarily inspired by nature, depicting nature, or created using natural materials like wood, clay or glass, plus recycled materials and/or found and repurposed objects. All artist mediums will be represented.

Based on that description, you can see why Andy was a perfect fit for the Moss Rock Festival. And Alabama loved him! Our trailer was much lighter on the way home. Here are a few highlights and photos from the event.


Upon arriving, we were greeted by lovely southern belles.


Andy's tent was constantly flooded with people, which was great! Birmingham people love art and they love 30A.


Susan Shoemaker was the 2013 featured poster artist. I don't know if she's ever illustrated a children's book, but she should.


We saw our friend Marian Baker of Blockhead Arts. You may remember her from the Slotin Folk Fest. I still intend to get two commissioned pieces from her - one of our children and one of our cats.


Andy and I were both crazy about Michael Ballew's art. When Michael approached us about trading art, we were thrilled! One of his churches is now proudly displayed in our living room.


Our tent was located near Andrea Marty of Anchor and Daisy. Cool jewelry! I'm annoyed with myself that her photo is blurry, but I wanted to be sure she was mentioned in this post.


You know who was fun and had cool stuff? Zade Denny of Digs Design and Lucy Farmer of Lucy's Inspired.


I was totally inspired by Chad Moore's photography. Having four boys, our house is flooded with toys. I couldn't help but think of what shots I could take with our collection of super heroes and Little People!


I liked the bold and colorful folk art of Anthony Tavis.


I admired Darrell Ezekiel's creative use of quilts. If he has a web site, I can't find it. But you can reach him at ezekiel_431@hotmail.com or (256) 404-8377.

Inside the Town Hall, local bakers showed off some amazing cakes. Unfortunately, I had three little boys climbing on me, so I didn't get to taste any of the cakes. But aren't they gorgeous?


This is Emily Forsythe of Louise's Cakes-N-Things.


This is Kimberly Wiggins of Cakes by Kim.


Sadly, I didn't get her name, but this creation is from Any Way Cakes.


I met Rudy, a distant relative of an Ewok. OMG, he was so cute!


I took this photo of the Village Green before the crowds arrived. While standing in line for lunch, our three little boys pretended they were bowling balls and almost knocked over a group of ladies. It was embarrassing, needless to say.


After the bowling ball incident, our boys were put in time out behind Andy's tent. I had high hopes of them taking a long nap while I chatted it up with people. Did that dream come to fruition? No, it did not. A+ for effort, though.


FYI, Andy Saczynski is an introvert. As to avoid awkward small talk, he paints during festivals. The irony is that it usually attracts more conversation. Bless his heart. People just can't resist communicating with the A Sac!


The best part of the festival was bumping into my 10th grade English teacher. I haven't seen her since 1995. Let's just say that I may have gotten a little emotional and cried tears of joy. I love her so much! She was one of the first influences and to this day remains one of the main influences in my writing career. I credit her with giving me the encouragement and direction I needed. If not for Gale Flynn, formerly known as Gale Skinner, this blog likely wouldn't exist. God bless teachers!