For the third year in a row, Defiance, Ohio, whose official city flower is the lilac, celebrated their Lilac Festival. Saturday, Kara, her friend Brandi, and I spent the morning downtown, walking among the various vendors set up along both sides of the street.
This is the time of year that the lilacs bloom here and their telltale fragrance wafted through the street. The garden centers had lilac shrubs for sale, many vendors had lilac floral arrangements decorating their booths, and the Master Gardeners of Defiance County were giving away rooted cuttings of lilac shrubs.
Of course, the first place we stopped was in the area where the local garden centers were set up. Marcella Ciccotelli from Colorscapes was there, as was Kircher's. Romie loves the scented geranium (Pelargonium citrosum) that smells like lemon and I was talking to him on the cell phone as I walked by a large one in Kircher's display. I told him about it and he said, "Buy it." Didn't have to tell me twice! It really was a nice one and was even blooming.
A rainbow of Adirondack chairs caught our attention and we sat in them to see if they were comfortable. Surprisingly, they were! These are made of recycled materials and they come in a reclining version, which can be seen in brown, behind us.
A littler further up the street was a business called Indigo. They carry unique art items and selections of artisan jewelry, but the heart of their business is therapeutic massage. Today, on the sidewalk in front of the store, Missy was offering one-minute chair massages for a dollar. Kara and I neither one could resist and we left there feeling better than when we'd arrived. I'm going to schedule a massage with them as a reward to myself for completing the half-marathon I'm training for.
Just as there was a grouping of vendor displays focusing on horticulture, the artists had their own area. Here, there was pottery, jewelry, and fine art. We spent quite a bit of time here, looking at and admiring the beautiful offerings, as well as chatting with a delightful artist as she worked (Rosie Bryant).
Kara especially enjoyed this, because two of her art professors from Defiance College were there, selling their works, and she had some fun bantering back and forth with them. (Kara has a B.A. degree in graphic design.)
Steve Smith was there with his pottery, as well as some done by his daughter.
Doug Fiely had many of his woodcuts, engravings and paintings offered for sale. I like his Picasso-like style of depicting people and his contemporary style in general. I saw a couple of paintings that I would love to see in our house, but finances don't allow for it at the moment. Hopefully, one will come to live here someday.
We spent quite a bit of time at a table filled with pottery made by the art students from Bryan High School in nearby Bryan, Ohio. There were some fabulous pieces there, costing anywhere from $1-15 and we each left there with one. I wish we'd had such classes when I was in high school, but I wonder if I would have signed up for them if we'd had. As I've said before, I don't have an artistic bone in my body, but that's what art teachers are for, right?
With the exception of a little too much wind, the weather was nearly perfect for coming out to mingle and leisurely stroll down "Main Street" (actually, it's Clinton/SR66). Daisy the poodle even got dolled up for the occasion.