Wine, Beer and Art Walk downtown Watsonville
The Wine, Beer and Art Walk returns to downtown Watsonville on Aug. 19. Contributed photo

For the fourth annual Wine, Beer and Art Walk, locals and visitors can stroll downtown Watsonville to sip local wines and craft beers, sample food, and experience artwork created by local artists and artisans. 

On Aug. 19 from 1-5pm, the City of Watsonville and Pajaro Valley Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture will present the Wine, Beer and Art Walk in downtown Watsonville. Eventgoers will receive a wine glass, tote bag and passport book featuring downtown locations for one tasting at each of 18 to 22 locations. 

This year a number of new venues will be featuring artists in their businesses downtown. 

“We asked the City how we could support the arts element of the Walk,” said Mireya Gomez-Contreras, deputy director of Arts Council Santa Cruz County. “So, we stepped up to invite and increase businesses’ interest in including art at their stops during the event. Our team also connected with local artists to expand opportunities and audiences for their work. As a result, four businesses and five artists of color are partnering for the first time this year.” 

Artists Karina North, Samantha Cruz, Francisco Serrano, Hermelinda Vasquez and Carlos Campos will all be showing their work at local businesses during the Walk.

Watsonville’s galleries will also be open. “Out of the Fire,” a multimedia exhibit exploring artwork that utilizes fire as a transformative tool, will be on display at Pajaro Valley Arts Sudden Street gallery, 37 Sudden St. 

“We are exhibiting over 100 works by 55 artists,” said “Out of the Fire” curator Susana Arias. “All the sculptures and paintings are created, altered or affected by fire. There are metal works in bronze, fabricated steel, forged steel and copper, and there is jewelry representing many different processes; in ceramics we have raku, smoked, anagama, soda, pit and gas firings; in painting we have laser, encaustic and pyrography; in glass we have slumped, blown and cast Patê de Verre. We are very lucky to have such a creative community and it shows in this spectacular exhibition.”

Pajaro Valley Arts is presenting its second Wine, Beer and Art Walk exhibit, “A Visual Journey,” featuring 33 artists at 280 Main St. in the Porter Building. Curator Judy Stabile invited artists to show a series that documents their visual journey through their medium, art style and/or community. 

Just up the street at 230 Main St., pop into Studio Judy G to check out the “Taking Off” and “Men in Nature” exhibits, which will also be open during the Wine, Beer and Art Walk. 

The Watsonville Center for the Arts (375 Main St.) will feature eight Watsonville-based artists participating in Arts Council Santa Cruz County’s 2023 Open Studios event this fall. Artists exhibiting at the Center include Patti O. Hedderly, Janice Shane Mann, Elaine Pinkernell, Birgitta Steiner, Sylvia Valentine, Hermelinda Vasquez-Matias and Melissa West—two of whom are also first-time Open Studios participants.

“The Walk will give people a sneak peek into what visitors will see the weekend of October 7th and 8th at South County Open Studios,” said Ann Ostermann, Open Studios & Events Director for Arts Council Santa Cruz County. “We’ll also be pouring some wonderful wine.”

The event features beer and wine from Watsonville Public House, Pelican Ranch Winery, Windy Oaks Estate Winery, Santa Cruz Cider Co., Serventi Ranch Hard Cider and more.

“The Wine, Beer and Art Walk is Watsonville’s arts ecosystem at work,” Gomez-Contreras said. “It’s representative of a diverse set of artists, art forms and approaches to participation. It invites all stakeholders to have a role—the private sector, nonprofit arts and the public sector—to work together intentionally and identify a shared vision and to act on it.” 

Tickets for the 2023 Wine, Beer and Art Walk are $45 and are now available on Eventbrite. This event is popular and sells out in advance.

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