Local Festivals

Published on December 29th, 2022 | by TLV News


13th Annual Oxford Fiber Festival to Return In Person and Online 

The Oxford Fiber Festival will be returning January 18–22, 2023, to The Powerhouse Community Arts Center. As the oldest, longest running, continual festival in Mississippi, Oxford Fiber Festival is proud to present more than 25 in person vendors. This year’s featured speakers include Scottish tartan historian Peter MacDonald and interactive fiber artist Jane Tardo of New Orleans. With Learning Lunches, in-person markets, classes, workshops, interactive exhibits, and more this year’s Fiber Festival has something for everyone. 

The opening reception is Friday, January 21, 2023, from 5:30–7 pm at the Powerhouse Community Arts Center and will feature interactive fiber artist Jane Tardo of New Orleans. Tardo is a teacher, maker, quilter, and inventor. They were recently featured in The Washington Post for their mobile art gallery The Haunted Hearse. Jane and the Hearse will both be key features of this year’s festival. 

“Jane’s work is amazing. But the only way to see it is by cell phone. You insert your phone—on video—into the custom made RC roller coster inside the hearse and less than a minute later out pops a video of their work, ” says Program Director Stacey Sanford. “The second I saw it, I knew the Oxford Fiber Festival needed it. Not only is Jane’s work interactive and inspirational, it’s detailed and beautiful.” 

While the core of the festival is over the weekend, the kick off events will be the Learning Lunch Series starting with the Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library on January 18th at noon.

Guests who register will receive lunch and listen to the virtual lecture presented by Mr. Peter MacDonald. Wednesday’s discussion focuses on the history and importance of Scottish tartans. This program is provided and supported by the Friends of the Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library. 

The second Learning Lunch will be hosted on Thursday at noon at the Univeristy Museum. Mr. MacDonald’s second lecture will cover the creation and identification of different tartan patterns. This lecture will feature several of the patterns seen on display inside the Powerhouse Community Arts Center as part of the festival. The Gallery Display will show from January 6–23 and is sponsored by Kilts of Atlanta

Program Director Stacey Sanford says, “I am very excited about our new hybrid Learning Lunch program. Not only does it expand our speaker line up, but it allows us to thank our Friends of the Festival who directly support our featured speakers. This year each Friend of the Festival will have access to both lectures by Mr. MacDonald and our reception lecture by Jane Tardo. Our goal is to share the fiber arts with anyone, and by recording the lectures and sharing with our Friends, not only does our network grow, but so does our reach.” 

Guests can register for the Learning Lunches at OxfordFiberFestival.com/tartan or become a Friend of the Festival at OxfordFiberFestival.com/Friends. Friends should receive their recorded lectures by late January 2023. 

“I am very proud of Year 13,” says Program Director Stacey Sanford. “We learned so much during the pandemic and over the last twelve festivals in general. We added more vendors, changed up our scheduling, and curated a whole new list of classes and workshops. This year’s magazine is completely different and we are still growing. People should expect even more as 2023 continues.” 

Return participants will be happy to see that many vendors from previous years have also returned. 

“We could not do this, year after year, without SPARKLE Studios, Jems Lux Fibers, the Tutwiler Quilters, CWSG-Co Op, DeSoto Arts Council, TranQuill WaterZ, The Foldout Cat, Across Generations, Mawufemor, Holly Dyeworks and more for their continued support. It always feels like a family reunion!” says Sanford. 

With so much to see and do, the Oxford Fiber Festival has created a complete magazine with calendars, schedules, and information. These can be picked up at the Powerhouse Community Arts Center, University Museum, Lafayette County and Oxford Public Library, or Visit Oxford. They can be mailed by request by contacting OxfordFiberFestival@gmail.com.

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About the Author

The Local Voice is a bimonthly entertainment guide and newspaper based in Oxford, Mississippi, covering and distributed in North Central Mississippi, including Oxford, Ole Miss, Taylor, Abbeville, Water Valley, Lafayette County, Yalobusha County, and parts of Panola County, Marshall County, and Tupelo . The Local Voice is distributed free to over 255 locations in North Mississippi and also available as a full color PDF download worldwide on the internet.

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