This weekend, I was finally able to check out ArtsGoggle, the highly anticipated bi-annual arts & entertainment festival happening all over Fort Worth’s Near Southside, and it was even more amazing to be right smack in the middle of all the fun. Fall ArtsGoggle presented 200 artists, 50 bands and 60 venues throughout three urban villages along Magnolia Avenue, South Main and 8th Avenue; the only complaint I have was that 4-10pm just wasn’t enough time for me to capture all the happenings.
The Near Southside is famous for its eclectic renaissance of culinary and visual arts, and ArtsGoggle is no exception. Everywhere you go, you’ll meet brilliant people and encounter so many different kinds of art: live music, jewelry, paintings, glass blowing to name a few. One of the best parts? Foodie heaven. I simply recommend eating and drinking your way through each village as you stumble upon one great setup to the next. We nibbled on gourmet corn dogs at Bearded Lady, cheese plates at Magnolia Cheese Company and Mexican goodies from the Holy Frijoles food truck.
One of my favorite parts of ArtsGoggle was discovering all the little nooks and crannies that make up this area around Magnolia Ave. Local businesses opened their doors, providing a chance for the public to see what’s really behind the photography studio, hair salon, boutique, and so on – and to meet the incredibly talented people behind them. The Words on Wheels bus, aka the WOW bus was one of my favorites. A relaxed and chic mobile library that will be posted up in and around Magnolia for you to pick up a book, sit down and read a book, or share your own books. So cool.
The festival is completely free, and I loved seeing all the sweet families and lively pups taking advantage of the beautiful fall day. It rained a little bit, but I didn’t mind it. In fact, it was almost on cue as we were watching a live opera performance of Opera Shots on the Live Oak patio. [Opera shots is a free 4x a year event the Fort Worth Opera puts on at local pubs and wine bars to make opera more accessible to everyone.] Although free, I recommend bringing some dough (most vendors take credit cards) because so much of the art is too beautiful to pass up. I took advantage of the funky jewelry finds along Magnolia including the glam jewelry vendor, Chicks and Stones, offering up some incredible precious stones; naturally, I chose a purple stone necklace.