Four years ago a group of artists and musicians had an idea that would benefit their community. The Briscoe Elementary building was no longer being used as a school, so why not turn the public space into a community place to celebrate and create: A community art center? Thus was born the Briscoe ArtWing.




The other part of this vision was to create a free art and music festival and keep fees to artists relatively low. The event came to be known as The MidSummers Dream Art and Music Festival, and has become an annual activity. This year's festival will take place Saturday and Sunday, June 16 and 17, at the Briscoe Elementary School building, 265 N. Main St., Ashland.




The festival provides an opportunity for the public to see and purchase regional arts and crafts. The event also highlights area musicians, and there are booths with food and drink.




The festival will showcase 100 artists and artisans from Portland to Los Angeles displaying their jewelry, pottery, woodwork, handmade clothing, fine art and photography. Artists will be on hand to discuss their work. The event is a fundraiser for the Briscoe ArtWing and the Lithia Arts Guild, whose mission is the promotion of art, culture and art education. A small percentage of gross sales will benefit the new Briscoe ArtWing.




Guitarist Jeff Pevar returns to MidSummers and will play with numerous bands over the weekend, including The Rogue Suspects and Bohemian Soul. Bohemian Soul has created an eclectic mix of original rhythm and blues tunes.




Drew Rouse brings his original folk-rock-reggae to the main stage again this year as the headliner on Saturday night from 8-10 p.m. His set follows Craig Wright and the Horse Feathers from 6:30-7:45 p.m. Saturday. Local folk artist Alice DiMicele takes the stage on Saturday from 3:30-4:30 p.m. DiMicele has just released her new CD "Ebb and Flow."




Surfer and singer-songwriter Micah Wolf from Hawaii is on his first west coast tour. Wolf grew up in Southern Oregon and spent a number of years in Ashland. His first CD, self-titled "Micah Wolf" is on his own record label, Blockplane Records. Wolf plays the Main Stage on Saturday from 2-3 p.m., and the Cypress Stage on Sunday from 2:30-3:30 p.m.




New this year is the Sweets Benefit. During the After-Party on Saturday night from 7-10 p.m., the ArtWing will offer desserts, coffee and teas donated by local merchants, bakers, and restaurants. Proceeds from the sale of these desserts will help the Lithia Arts Guild fund projects throughout the year including art education in the Ashland School district and events like Dia de los Muertos, and First Nations Day.




Tickets to the Sweets Benefit are available at Heart and Hands, and The Music Coop in Ashland. They also will be available at the festival. For more information on the Sweets Benefit, call 535-5362.




For information about the festival, see www.midsummers dreamfestival.com or call 535-3733.




ENTERTAINMENT LINEUP




Saturday June 16 Main Stage (back of Briscoe) 10-10:45 a.m. Cantrell Maryott &

Singer/songwriter 11:15-Noon Rachel Kennedy and The Gender Gap 12:10-12:20 p.m. Circus Tribal Belly Dancers 12:30-1:30 p.m. The New Scogmo Band &

New Orleans RB1:40-1:50 p.m. Circus Tribal Belly Dancers 2-3 p.m. Micah Wolf &

Folk, indie




3:30-4:30 p.m. Alice DiMicele &

Conscious folk 4:40-4:50 p.m. Oregon Stage Works &

Two vignettes




5-6 p.m. Bohemian Soul, with Inger Jorgensen and Jeff Pevar, RB originals 6:30-7:45 p.m. Craig Wright and The Horse Feathers &

Rock 'n' roll 8-10 p.m.Drew Rouse and The Gathering &

Conscious folk-reggae-rock




Cypress Stage (Front Stage) 10-10:30 a.m. Gene Burnett &

Singer/songwriter 10:30-11 a.m. Darrin Wayne &

Singer/songwriter 11:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Adam Evolve &

Heavy blues 1-2 p.m. Majik &

Trio featuring Jim Quinby, Marcella Ruikis and Kent Heyward 2:30-3:30 p.m. Jen Ambrose &

Singer/songwriter




4-5 p.m. Paul Sprawl &

Blues troubadour




5:30-6:30 p.m. Montana Soul Sunday June 17 Main Stage (Back Of Briscoe) 11 a.m.-Noon Rutendo! Marimba Band 12:30-1:30 p.m. Paul Sprawl &

Blues Troubadour




1:35-1:55 p.m. Hula O Kahawai Dancers




2-3 p.m. One Horse Shy &

Folk, Americana




3:30-4:30 p.m. Rogue Suspects &

Rock 'n' roll




5-6 p.m. Annie Mac &

RB Cypress Stage (Front Stage) 11 a.m.-Noon Dan Tiller &

Mississippi Delta-blues slide guitar 12-12:30 p.m. Larry West"" Singer/songwriter 1-2 p.m. Jaese Lecuyer &

Singer/songwriter




2:30-3:30 p.m. Micah Wolf &

Folk, indie, surf




4-5:30 p.m. Drew Rouse &

Conscious folk-reggae-rock