Sault Summer Arts Festival - Tuesday, August 1, 2017 - 10am to 8pm - LSSU campus, Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan

Last updated: August 17, 2017

2017 Sault Summer Arts Festival Award Winners

The 45th Annual Sault Summer Arts Festival was held August 1, 2017, on the beautiful campus of Lake Superior State University.  Award winners were (pdf version):

Three-hundred-dollar OLIVE CRAIG BEST OF SHOW AWARD, given by the Olive Craig Gallery:  Jeanne Tubman, Sault, MI oil painter

One-hundred-fifty-dollar PAINTING AWARD given by the Le Sault Artists Guild:  Zoey Wood Salomon.  The Sault, Ontario artists paints in the traditional Woodland Indian tradition.

One-hundred-fifty-dollar BEST OF CRAFTS AWARD, given jointly by National Office Products and Printing and the Art Store:  Renee Hillock.  The Dafter multi-media artist displayed both paintings and fibers.  The award was given for her fiber work.

Seventy-five-dollar JUDGE’S CHOICE AWARD:  Mark Besteman.  The Rudyard wood worker makes rustic outdoor furniture.

The following are all fifty-dollar awards.

AARRE LAHTI DESIGN AWARD, given by the Sault Area Arts Council:  Schmid-Marken Designs.  The LaPorte, Indiana.  The Schmidt-Markens make decorated stoneware pottery.

JEWELRY AWARD, given by Mark Dobias, Attorney:  Paul Baker.  The Las Vegas artists designs and makes jewelry using dichromatic glass under the label of “Touch of Glaz”.

FIBER ARTS AWARD, given by Leanne and Gary Deuman:  Judith Dam.  The Florida seamstress designs and makes fairy tale clothing for children.

GRAPHICS AWARD, given by Cooper Dental:  Anthony Strublic.  The Marinette, Wisconsin artist produces finely detailed pencil drawings of ships and lighthouse with a focus on Great Lakes shipping.

PHOTOGRAPHY AWARD, given by Thomas J. Veum, Leanne Barnes Deuman and Michael T. Veum, Attorneys:  Mark Markusic.  The East Leroy, Michigan artist specializes in Michigan scenic photography.

POTTERY AWARD, given by Soo Co-op Credit Union:  Mark Kozma.  Kozma is a North Carolina based potter.

WOOD AWARD, given by Michael Bryce Winnick, Attorney:  Mike Schroeder.  The Suttons Bay artist sculpts Petoskey stone as well as crafting rustic furniture.

YVONNE PEER GLASS AWARD:  Rick Shapero.  Shapero is a Cedarville blown glass artist.

AWARD FOR BEST DISPLAY:  Claire Rettenmund.  The Flint, Michigan artist displays both watercolor paintings and hand painted silk scarves.

HONORABLE MENTION AWARDS went to Norris Seward for his wood furniture and to Mary Stroba for her oil paintings.  Both are Sault, Michigan artists.

The 2017 festival judge was William Morrison, art teacher, blacksmith and multi-media artist.  The Annual Sault Summer Arts Festival is a public service of the Sault Area Arts Council and Lake Superior State University.

2017 Sault Summer Arts Festival - Make a Day of It!

45th Annual Sault Summer Arts Festival
Tuesday, August 1, 10 A.M. to 8 P.M., Lake Superior State University
Live Entertainment from 1 to 8 P.M.

This year you can come to the 45th Annual Sault Summer Arts Festival and make a day of it. A number of food vendors offer everything from wood fired pizza and pulled pork and curly fries to cherry products, maple syrup products and raw vegetables on a skewer. The Cisler Center is open with the Galley and with air conditioned restrooms. You can take a break from perusing the arts to sit and enjoy the live entertainment, which begins at 1 p.m. on the Cisler Center’s outdoor stage and continues until the festival’s close at 8 p.m.

Artists and craftsmen offer one-of-a-kind apparel and accessories for adults and children; a wide variety of yard ornaments, both indoor and outdoor furniture; paintings, photographs, drawings and note cards; stained, fused and dichromatic glass; jewelry; sculpture; bike streamers, raffles and entertainment information and schedules; books and handmade soaps and lotions; spinning, weaving, knitting, fresh flowers and barbeque tools. You can talk to the artists and authors because they are all there—no agents are allowed. You can be confident of the quality because it’s a juried show. You can park all day because there’s plenty of free parking. Everything you pay for you’ll either consume or take home with you because the festival itself is free of charge, even the entertainment—a public service of the Sault Area Arts Council.

A full roster of exhibits and entertainers is available below (pdf version)

Questions? Email: or call Jean Jones at 906-437-5463.

Sault Summer Arts Festival 2017 - Exhibits and Entertainers

Don't Miss the 2017 Sault Summer Arts Festival on August 1!

The Sault Summer Festival kicks off August this year on Tuesday, August 1, on the beautiful grounds of Lake Superior State University, with an expansive view of the Upper St. Marys and Sault, Ontario. You’ll find loads of free parking right up close.

Don't miss this year's Sault Summer Arts Festival!  See newsletter for details.

Don't miss this year's Sault Summer Arts Festival! See newsletter for details.

After many years satisfying her wanderlust, Moonyeen Albrecht is back with her sparkling stained glass. In addition to her windows, suncatchers and boxes she is now showing glowing nightlights and butterflies perched on wire stakes to accompany a potted plant or stand in a vase. The nightlights are very practical because they not only provide light but instead of using up a socket, provide three new ones. And the festival provides more in the glass department. Gail Van Sledright has hanging fused glass tiles that range from a yard long to tiny, sparkling beauties the size of piano keys. Paul Baker (Touch of Glaz) is here again with dichromatic and fused glass jewelry, glass clocks and more. Other jewelers are Mark and Stacy Taylor with affordable and practical jewelry in silver alone or set with semiprecious gems. An added bonus is that he can size while you wait. Jim and Cindy Pierson are back with their large display of original, fine jewelry in gold and silver. This is their fourth year in the festival. In their first year they won the Judge’s Choice Award and in both their second and third year the jewelry award. Danielle Lynch is also a jewelry award winner. She is the only person we know who crafts jewelry from flowers and plants.

Jan Barnes is back. Jan makes beautiful, butter soft leather purses—the kind you’d pay $250 for at a fine shop. They last forever and look wonderful while doing it; take a beating and don’t show it. Best of all, they aren’t made by some guy with a big name but by a woman who understands what women need to carry and how they like to organize, with lots of pockets and zippers and minimum bulk. Two years ago she took the Best of Crafts award and last year she repeated the feat. Also working in leather are festival veterans Bonnie and John Dienes, who make rugged leather wallets and leather belts—both strong and long lasting.

Karen and Doug Schmidt-Marken are back with versatile, practical stoneware, and are joined by a new potter, Mark Kozma. Mark was originally from Cedarville, and is now based in North Carolina. Photographers include both Norris Seward of the Sault and Doug Markusic of East Leroy, both of whom have won our photography award. Seward specializes in photos of the EUP, and Markusic says 99% of his photos were taken in Michigan. Norris and Traci Seward have expanded their photographic line to include photographs on tiles (trivets, coasters and tiles to hang) and on metal. Seward makes beautiful, solid wood furniture as well, of the sort you'll covet even if your house is already jammed.

Another festival wood crafter is Mark Besteman of Rudyard who makes log furniture for indoors or outdoors. Mark won last year’s Wood Award. An artist with a different sort of wood who is just beginning to show his art is Gene Biron of Hessel. Biron discerns possibilities in driftwood that others miss and will have some shapely ships on display. And while we’re on the subject of ships we should note that Tony Strublic is back with the detailed graphite drawings of Great Lakes ships and light houses that have earned both Graphic and Honorable Awards and which took Best of Show in the 2015 Escanaba Waterfront Art Festival.

Also crafting lighthouses of a different sort is Pam Von Seggren of Royal Oak who uses beach pebbles to construct yard ornaments, including lighthouses, And the star of any show, Paul Mason is back! We’d hate to think of a festival without his wacky yard art! Most pieces come with poles you just stick in the ground but a few are free standing and all are upbeat and highly original, whether it be a copper pot that has become a turtle shell or an old-fashioned fly sprayer reborn as a dragonfly. His is always, as Ed Sullivan used to say, “reely big shew”. Also in the innovative metal department of a different sort are Terry and Markwardt of Austin Texas, makers of Wise Guy Gadgets. Their products are finely crafted and very original barbeque and other tools that really work. We’ve heard great reviews from area people who bought them last year. Chris Vandermuellen is back with the products of his forge, ranging from coat hooks to yard signs.

A number of our artists are multi-dimensional. Dafter Renee Hillock comes immediately to mind. She is an oil painter and a fiber artist, quilting, knitting, weaving and more, who won last year’s Fiber Award. Diane Kramer has Christmas ornaments, lanyards and rosaries, painted rocks, bracelets and more with something new every year. Dee Stevens is both a knitter and an author and has both Sault history books and a huge array of hand knit apparel at her booth. Rich Hill will be there with his books as well, all of which are set in the Sault, including his latest, “Lost in the Woods”, and if you’ve even considered ever building a log cabin this book is a must! Festival regular Deb Nolan is back with her shirts and jackets embellished with imaginative applique. Jacalyn Salloum is back with her soaps and lotions. A new exhibitor is Judy Dam with clothes for kids—fairy tales on display. Also in the fiber category is the quilt raffle held by the Presbyterian ladies.

We have some fine painters, all of them previous SSAF award winners. Both Jeanne Tubman and Zoey Wood-Salomon count the SSAF Best of Show among their awards and Mary Stroba the Painting Award among hers. Jeanne Tubman is best known for her nautical and wildlife paintings and lately for her downtown murals. Zoey Wood-Salomon paints in the traditional Woodland Indian style and her serene graphic note cards have won many graphic awards. Clare Rettenmund specializes in miniatures, many of which have been made into jewelry and has silk scarves as well. Mary Stroba usually paints in oils and her range is wide in both subject matter and style.

Gregory Gardens will be back brightening the scene with flowers.

Food vendors include UP in Smoke with barbeque and more, a pizza vendor, and Ricky Hilliard with vegetables curled around skewers. Dee Besteman’s maple syrup products include, in addition to syrup, spun maple sugar and maple syrup candy. Food and cold pop are available in the Cisler Center.

Live entertainment begins at noon on the stage behind the Cisler Center. Singer-songwriters Archie Reno and Al Seymour are both back. Poets Frank Blissett and Renee Dreiling will be there. Singer-writer Matthew Carl Williams will be there and the multi-instrumentalist folk duo February Sky will perform, probably in the evening. They and a number of others will have CDs available. And Simon is still at it—there are more entertainers coming.

Blacksmith and art teacher William Morrison is the festival judge this year. See his work during July in the Olive Craig Gallery (pp. 3 to 5).

The Sault Summer Arts Festival is free of charge—a Sault Area Arts Council public service hosted by Lake Superior State University. Every bit of it is brought to you by volunteers, even the entertainment—every year for forty-five years. Festival hours are from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

Sault Area Arts Council Home Page
217 Ferris Street, Sault Ste. Marie, MI 49783
e-mail: Phone: (906) 635-1312