The annual Buffalo Festival and Paintout is returning Thursday through Saturday at the Owensboro Museum of Fine Art. The outdoor event will feature an exhibition of paintings of Owensboro/Daviess County by several dozen visiting artists, a community painting session with a chance to win spirits from local distilleries, and entertainment by the bluegrass band King’s Highway.
Artists may still enter the paintout by visiting the museum’s website for registration information. The entry fee is $30.
The festival will be highlighted by an exhibition and gala from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Thursday, when more than $3,000 in awards will be presented for winning entries. The annual festival is presented by sponsor Swedish Match.
Admission to the gala is $50 per person, while Friends of the OMFA Foundation receive a $10 discount. For reservations, email [email protected] or call 270-685-3181. Proceeds from the Gala will be designated to benefit the museum’s continuing education and outreach programs for the community and region.
The Buffalo theme for the Festival and Paintout was inspired by the two heroic-sized bronzes installed in the art museum’s Ryan Sculpture Park on Frederica Street between 9th and 10th streets. The bronzes were commissioned by the museum to create the Bronze Buffalo Trace designed to commemorate the origins of Owensboro.
Present-day Frederica Street began as a buffalo trace through which settlers made their way to the banks of the Ohio River to establish the settlement which ultimately became Owensboro.
The bronze buffalo sculptures “Into the Wind” and “Meadowlands Pair” were gifts to the museum and the community from Mary Lou Steele and her late husband, Robert Steele, as well as former Mayor Ron Payne and his wife Denise. The bronzes were created by noted American wildlife sculptor T. D. Kelsey of Texas.
The Owensboro Museum of Fine Art is open 12-5 p.m. Tuesday through Friday and 1-4 p.m. on weekends. Admission is free but donations are encouraged of $3 for adults for $2 for children.