Solstice Workshop Fun Continues

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Solstice Workshop Fun Continues
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By Robert Bernstein

The Solstice Workshop is full of energy and excitement in the final days before the parade! And you still have time to be involved! Come down to the Workshop on Ortega Street at the corner of Garden Street. Meet the artists and see how you can fit in! Even if you don't have time to build things, you can be a part of an existing ensemble!

Here are my latest photos from the exciting and fun Solstice Workshop!

Krystal Freedom is one of the cheerful people here to register people! Everyone is welcome to come visit and check things out!

This year's theme is "Heroes" in line with all of the heroic activities that have happened around the Montecito tragedies. As always, the theme is just a suggestion and artists are free to do whatever they want with the theme or even to ignore it completely.

Claire Frandsen is creating a Dinosaur Heroes ensemble!

She is wearing a shirt with an amusing warning! It was her official shirt when she worked at Laumeier Sculpture Park near St Louis!

Of course, she has plenty of help from her Dinosaur Team!

And they are very proud of their safety record!

Lisa Thomas is another Artist in Residence. She is creating the Pass the Hat Ensemble with a Mother Earth theme. What greater hero is there than Mother Earth?

I helped a bit with the paper mache process on the hand of Mother Earth

Thanks to Dave Basso for this photo as my hands were too messy for photos!

Dave Basso is the husband of Marie who was putting in more time than I did!

Here Lisa Thomas posed for a glamor shot!

Artist in Residence Mary Price is helping La Boheme create their Egyptian Pyramid float!

Mary is putting finishing touches on her flower that is truly magical in the way its parts move!

Here Mary poses with her artistic daughter Madeleine

Kent Epperson of Traffic Solutions is working with his partner Kimi Vandyk of the Pink Party to create a fleet of art bicycles for the parade. Anyone who rides a bicycle instead of driving is a big Hero for the community and for the environment for sure!

Here is a demonstration of a Dragonfly art bicycle!

Here Kimi does her part to make sure there is plenty of Pink to go around

Caroline continues creating her Bee Heroes ensemble

As many hands build the beehive and other accessories!

Bees are such popular Heroes, famed dancer Paulina Carey and her team are building a beehive of their own!

Jim Sun Bear is a strong, silent technical director who makes sure everyone has a solid platform for their creations!

Of course there are many others helping make that happen, too!

And Riccardo Morrison is Workshop Director keeping everything together

The costume shop people are busy creating many of the costumes and other fabric art for the hundreds of participants in the parade. Here Phyllis and Barbara work on my costume

My wife Merlie helps with an accessory for my costume

Nicki LaFleur does a bit of everything, including costume design

Clau Orona is another wizard of costumes

Of course, Pali X-Mano is creating the Grand Finale ensemble. Each year, a completely new inflatable art piece with aerial dancers suspended inside! Here he poses with Solstice Executive Director Robin Elander and assistant Rachel

Yoshiko is essential for the huge amount of sewing that goes into the project

Here are sketches of the complete plan!

Ann Chevrefils has created and/or worked on some of the most memorable Solstice ensembles for at least 30 years. This year she is enjoying being part of a team instead of being responsible for an ensemble

Geoffrey Barber and Cat Henley built this city on rock and roll. No, wait. They built it on cardboard!

Mask makers Joan Melendez and Hathor Hammett have fun as they create

So does this mask creator

This geometric piece has already taken form; these helpers are giving it color!

Mariano is responsible for one of the most popular parts of Solstice: The Brazilian Dance Ensemble!

Again, it is not too late to get involved! The Workshop is at the corner of Ortega and Garden Street. It is open afternoons and early evening every day now. Come by and see the excitement, energy and creativity! And feel free to lend a hand! Everyone is welcome!

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a-1529441002 Jun 19, 2018 01:43 PM
Solstice Workshop Fun Continues

Although I haven't attended the Solstice Parade in many years, I want to thank all the people who work so hard to make this parade happen. I know that it brings great joy to tourists and locals alike. Thanks for all that you do, Solstice gang.

Flicka Jun 19, 2018 02:22 PM
Solstice Workshop Fun Continues

Thanks for your photos, looks to be fabulous, as always. Years ago we always had friends come to town to help us celebrate. Now, I haven't been for awhile.

sbrobert Jun 20, 2018 10:10 AM
Solstice Workshop Fun Continues

Thank you for the kind words; very much appreciated.
For those who don't want to deal with the crowds, Solstice offers VIP seating in exchange for a donation. It means you can arrive when you want and know you have a good seat!
Anon at 1:43PM: Thank you very much for the appreciation of the Solstice gang. Community events indeed are a central part of building community.

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