October in Galveston is synonymous with festivals and this weekend (Oct. 17 & 18) is the 18th Annual ARToberfest. Presented by The Grand 1894 Opera House, ARToberfest is a juried Fine Arts Festival featuring more than 125 artists from across the United States. The weather is going to be great and admission is only $5. Festival hours are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday and held in the heart of the Downtown Cultural Arts District on Postoffice Street between 21st and 23rd Streets.
• Remember there are more than 125 artists, so take your time and browse. The festival will feature artists from Colorado, Wisconsin, Utah, Louisiana, Alabama, New Mexico and California as well as regional artists. Local artists include Sallie Anderson, Jeff Hamachek, Georgia Leisey, Karla Mock, Margaret Canavan, Regina Parkinson, Jane Presswood, Jane Rabek and Sandra Williams.
• Are you bringing the kids along? There is a new KIDS CREATIVE ZONE with free crafts for kids from noon to 3 p.m. both days. Find it in front of Clay Cup Studio on 22nd Street (between Postoffice and Market)
• Yes, there will be live music. DOUBLETAKE, Jim Byrom and Jack Haupert, will be performing from 3 to 5p.m. both days. They’ll be playing favorites from the 60s to the present in front of Mod Coffehouse on 21st and Postoffice.
• For the ladies, look for clothing designed by fiber/textile artists Rachael Montemayor and Heather Schiappa along with leather handbags designed by Judith Smith.
• For the guys, new this year is artist Bobby Weiss known for his handcrafted pen handles and razor handles.
• Did you forget to buy your pumpkin? Moody Methodist Church is bringing their pumpkin patch to the festival. Look for them at 22nd and Postoffice.
• Or are you adding a new pet to the family? The Galveston Island Humane Society will be offering adoptions.
• Don’t forget that there are several restaurants in the festival area so grab a bite to eat at one of these great locally owned spots.
If you want to stay in the heart of downtown Galveston, book your stay at The Tremont House.
If you want to enjoy of view of the harbor, consider Harbor House Hotel & Marina at Pier 21.
If you want a beachfront hotel with historic ambiance, stay at Hotel Galvez & Spa.