Monday, December 22, 2008

Florida Highwaymen Winter Art Event Weekend Itinerary

Florida Highwaymen Winter Art Event

January 9th, 10th and 11th

In Mount Dora

MOUNT DORA, FL: Six of Florida’s historic artists, known as The Highwaymen, will be at a Winter Event of the Arts, a three-day festival on January 9th, 10th and 11th benefiting Junior Achievement of Lake and Sumter counties.

On Saturday, January 10th, the popular Highwaymen artists will display and sell their art work from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. inside the Donnelly Building in Donnelly Park, in the center of Mount Dora. Visitors can enjoy the scenic renderings of Florida’s landscape expressed in the Highwaymen art style. On hand for the event will be original Highwaymen Mary Ann Carroll, the only female in the group, Johnny Daniels, James Gibson, Isaac Knight, Robert Lewis and Roy McLendon.

On January 9th, the evening prior to the Saturday event, the Highwaymen will participate in Mount Dora’s popular quarterly Art Stroll between 6 and 8 p.m. The artists will be “in and around” the Mount Dora Chamber of Commerce Historic Train Station where Geoff Cook’s vintage Highwaymen paintings will be on exhibit and sale. Cook is a well-known Highwaymen art collector who has more than 300 works that represent 50 years of Florida landscapes captured in oil.

That evening, following the Art Stroll, posters and books will be available for signing at a reception and semi-private dinner for the artists at the Gables Restaurant, directly across from the Chamber’s Train Station. Seating is limited. RSVP by calling (352) 383-8993.

On January 11th, the weekend will conclude with a showing and sale at the AAA Four Diamond Heron Cay Lakeview Bed and Breakfast. A “Semi-Private Sunday Brunch with the Artists” will be served from 10 a.m. to Noon. Reservations required. RSVP by calling (352) 383-4050.

From Noon to 3 p.m., the showing and sale at Heron Cay will be open to the public. For Information please call (352) 383-4050. The Heron Cay Lakeview Bed and Breakfast is located at 495 West Old U.S. Highway 441, west of North Donnelly Street. Margie Salyer and Randy Burgener are proprietors.

In the 1950s, the Highwaymen artists were a group of young black men from the Fort Pierce area. The late Alfred Hair and the late Harold Newton were considered the leaders of the group, studying under Backus and bringing their new-found talent back to the group. The art work, painted on an inexpensive construction material known as upson board, displayed traditional Florida scenes of palm trees, royal poinciana trees, and river vistas. From there, the artists would travel with their paintings along U.S. 1 and other Florida roadways, selling them from the trunks of their cars. It wasn’t until the 1990s that the group was labeled The Highwaymen.

Sponsors for the Winter Art Event include: The Mount Dora Chamber of Commerce, Lake County Tourism, the Mount Dora Village Merchants Association, Junior Achievement of Lake and Sumter Counties, the Gables Restaurant, 5th Avenue Café, Crispers of Eustis, Publix of Mount Dora. Margie Salyer, Randy Burgener and Geoff and Patti Cook are coordinating this Winter Highwaymen art event.

For information on the Highwaymen exhibit, please contact or by calling (352) 383-4050 or Toll Free at 1-888-437-6622. For more information on the Highwaymen, visit the website .and For Lodging information visit Heron Cay Lakeview Bed and Breakfast website at

A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Highwaymen art will be donated to the Junior Achievement of Lake and Sumter counties.

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