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Downtown's loss is Brookley's gain: Mobile's annual Arts Alive! festival is leaving Cathedral Square for Brookley Field, where it will take place this spring in conjunction with the newly announced Mobile Aerofest.
The inaugural Aerofest will take place March 20-21 at the Mobile Aeroplex, as Brookley is now known. While full details and schedules haven' t been fleshed out, organizers are promosing a multifaceted festival that will feature arts, live music on multiple stages, food-related components and a Titan FC mixed martial arts championship event that will be broadcast by CBS. The festival has an overall focus on helping injured veterans, with a portion of any profits earmarked for that purpose.
The inclusion of Arts Alive! definitely bolsters the arts side of the slate. The mini-festival was first presented in November 2003 and developed into an annual spring event based in Cathedral Square. Its exact lineup has been fluid, but it always has put a stress on eclecticism, including "written, visual and performing arts," and has emphasized the interactive presentation of arts. The most recent Arts Alive! fest was held in April, but principal organizer David Calametti also presented a slate of Arts Alive! attractions at the Greater Gulf State Fair in October.
"The stars have really aligned for us to forge this dynamic partnership with the Mobile Aerofest," Calametti said in a statement announcing his event's new home. "As Arts Alive! has grown over the years, we have always been open to new opportunities for collaboration. Aerofest provides us with the ideal platform to continue to showcase local art and organizations to the region and the nation while also enabling us to impact the lives of our nation's heroes."
According to Aerofest organizers, "Wounded veterans and all festival attendees will have the opportunity to participate in a variety of interactive art activities and learn hands-on about creating within a wide variety of artistic mediums." Set in Brookley Village, Arts Alive will include "a performing arts showcase, a visual arts show and sale, and a full schedule of musical performances."
"Arts Alive! and the Aerofest were both created to promote the best of Mobile while impacting our community in a positive and lasting way," Aerofest co-founded Dave Glassman said in the announcement. "Together I know we will become far greater than the sum of our parts individually."
Organizations supporting Aerofest include the Independence Fund, the Gary Sinise Foundation and the Mobile Airport Authority.
As of Thursday, tickets were on sale at early-bird prices of $30 for Aerofest general admission, $35 for admission to the Titan FC Championship fight on March 20 and $60 for combined festival and fight admission. To order tickets, or for festival details and updates, visit www.mobileaerofest.com.
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