The mill-town of Toledo will celebrate the coming spring this Saturday and Sunday, March 2 and 3, with artists showcasing works bursting with color during the First Weekend Art Celebration.

Throughout the two-day celebration, artists and galleries around town will open their doors and invite the public to visit, talk with artists and see what’s new.

Michael Gibbons Signature Gallery will be showcasing “Dawn Near Eddyville,” a 24”x30” oil depicting an iconic spruce tree that stands stoically along Crystal Creek Loop, the road that was once part of Highway 20 before the construction of the bypass. As fate would have it, Gibbons connected with Patricia Plunkett Holler, one of the descendants of the homesteaders of the property, who saw his painting featured in an online article and instantly recognized the tree.

“My dad told me about how, when he was quite a small boy, he stood beside his grandfather and watched him plant a little spruce tree near the road that went by their land in Eddyville,” Plunkett Holler said. “That had to have happened right around year 1900.”

The tree, now nearly 120 years old, captured Gibbons’ attention on one of his many painting excursions along the Oregon Coast.

“As a painter of the landscape I am informed by shapes, sounds, and smells. Evergreen trees, salt air, brackish water, wet earth,” Gibbons said, “All these experiences made me a painter for which I am eternally grateful.”

Michael Gibbons Signature Gallery, located at 140 NE Alder Street, will be open from noon to 5 pm both days of First Weekend.

Across the street, the Yaquina River Museum of Art will be featuring its “Toledo” exhibition, featuring scenes from around town drawn from the museum’s permanent collection. Located at 151 NE Alder Street, the museum will be open will be open from noon to 5 pm, with complimentary refreshments on offer.

Around the corner on Graham Street, Ivan Kelly will be featuring “January At Ona,” a plein air beach scene that truly captures the essence of Oregon’s rugged coastal landscape. Kelly, a Signature Member of the American Society of Marine Artists, will be on hand to talk about his work from 11 am to 5 pm on Saturday and noon to 5 pm on Sunday at 207 East Graham Street.

At 227 South Main Street, Frank Jones will be featuring his music and photography at Francyfolk Photos & Music. Jones, also known as “Toledo’s Troubadour,” will be on hand from 10 am to 4 pm each day to delight folk song aficionados with his guitar and singing voice.

A little further down on Main Street, Janet Runger will be featuring her talents as an assemblage artist at Crow’s Nest Gallery & Studio. Wander through her gallery during First Weekend and see forgotten objects turned into treasures. Crow’s Nest Gallery & Studio is located at 170 North Main Street, just across from Holy Toledo.

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