Oro Valley's annual Arts in the Park festival has garnered national recognition over the years for the quality and variety of its artisans and entertainment.
Now in its 14th year, this year's event for the first time will prominently feature another classic art form — jazz. Top musicians from Southern Arizona and beyond take to the main stage over the course of the two-day Oro Valley Arts in the Park Fine Art and Jazz Festival on Saturday and Sunday, April 10-11. The event also features a fine-art marketplace, delectable gourmet foods and numerous activities catering to children and families.
Admission to the festival is free of charge. The event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 10, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday, April 11, at Cañada del Oro Riverfront Park, with its views of the Santa Catalina Mountains and its easy-to-access walkways.
Attendees can take in performances both days and browse a variety of art at this juried fine-art festival. Artists are exhibiting and selling works in a variety of media, including ceramics, fibers, glass, jewelry, mixed media, paintings, photography and sculpture.
Judges dole out Exhibiting Artist Awards in the categories of Best of Show, and for the best in two-dimensional, three-dimensional and functional art, photography and jewelry.
14th annual Oro Valley Arts in the Park Fine Arts and Jazz Festival
9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, April 10
10 a.m.-4 p.m. Sunday, April 11
Cañada del Oro Riverfront Park, 551 W. Lambert Lane
Free to attend
Who plays when at OV arts in park
On the main stage at the Oro Valley Arts in the Park Fine Arts and Jazz Festival:
Saturday, April 10
Moises Paiewonsky Trio
On stage: 9:30 to 10:45 a.m.
Moisés Paiewonsky is an assistant professor of music (trombone) at the University of Arizona. He also maintains an active studio, directs the university's trombone ensemble and serves as the associate director of the UA Studio Jazz Ensemble.
Mark and Arlette Willis
On stage: 11:15 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
New to Tucson, the husband-and-wife team of Mark and Arlette Willis — she sings soprano; he plays harmonica and piano — have performed throughout the United States and in Japan and Russia.
On stage: 1 to 2:15 p.m.
Tucson pianist Nick Stanley presents a light-fingered showcase of straight-up jazz with a hefty blues chaser. He counts jazz greats Red Garland, Wynton Kelly and Cannonball Adderley among his influences.
Reno del Mar
On stage: 2:45 to 4 p.m.
Guitarists Phil Lipman and Mark Wilsey form the duo Reno del Mar. The pair has played together for more than three decades, exploring a variety of musical genres over the years. With its dual-guitar sound, Reno del Mar evokes a wide range of musical styles —Latin jazz, western swing, flamenco, bebop and the blues — with its original compositions. Lipman plays an acoustic steel string, while Mark Wilsey plays an acoustic nylon-string, Spanish-style guitar.
Sunday, April 11
Cool Breeze, featuring Homero Ceron
On stage: 11 a.m. to 12:15 p.m.
Formed in 1983, the Latin-influenced Cool Breeze has racked up accolades over the years for its performances and contributions to musical education from the likes of the Arizona Commission on the Arts, Tucson Pima Arts Council and Tucson Jazz Society.
The group has toured throughout the state, in California and in Mexico. In 1999, band leader Homero Ceron won the Arizona Arts Award, the highest honor the state bestows on individual artists.
Cool Breeze serves up a variety of musical dance styles — samba, bossa nova, mambo, calypso and others — with a jazz twist.
On stage: 12:45 to 2 p.m.
Jesse Tovar started playing professionally in 1958 at age 10 with his father and the Frank Estrada Band. He moved to Tucson in summer 1962, and since then he has led or performed with dozens of combos and big bands.
Over the years Tovar has accompanied or shared stages with Sammy Davis Jr., Michael Landon, Marilyn McCoo, Johnny Cash, Phyllis Diller, The Four Tops and The Temptations, to name a few.
Mood Swing, featuring Dan Griffin
On stage: 2:30 to 3:45 p.m.
Dan Griffin is one of Arizona's finest guitarists. A student of the instrument for 42 years, Griffin has appeared onstage with numerous musical greats, including BeBop Legend Artt Frank, contemporary artists Steve Laury and Brian Bromberg and mainstream performers such as Chris Issak and Donnie Osmond.
These days Griffin divides his time between gigs throughout Southern Arizona, teaching and arranging Mozart sonatas for eight-string classical guitar.