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The City of Brentwood and the Brentwood Art Society (BAS) are ready to kick off Summer 2019 with the 17th Annual Art, Wine & Jazz Benefit Festival in Brentwood’s downtown City Park, June 21 to 23.

The popular event has bounced between downtown and The Streets of Brentwood over the years, but last year was canceled when the new owners of The Streets placed restrictions on the event regarding vendors and the sale of food items. Organizers, believing the changes would put a damper on the event, canceled the festival.

This year however, the event is coming back to downtown and organizers are excited for the three-day festival.

“We will kick off our event this year in conjunction with the City of Brentwood’s Summer Concert Series on June 21 from 5-9 p.m.,” said Rosalinda Grejsen, BAS president. “Art vendors and wine and beer will be available in the park. Saturday at 11 a.m., we will move into our full event with a dynamic schedule of local and regional musicians, art and food vendors, local wine and microbrews, art displays from local schools, free supervised children’s activities, art experience activities and more.”

Since 2001, BAS, a nonprofit organization, has encouraged creativity and arts education in the local community. The BAS originally sought to raise funds for the Brentwood Unified School District (BUSD) to create an art docent program. Since then, the organization has expanded its efforts, offering scholarships to high school students, and donating to other community nonprofits that support BAS’s goal of fostering creativity through art.

Founded by BAS, the Art, Wine and Jazz Benefit Festival furthers the organization’s goal of giving back to the community. All proceeds from the event are donated to local organizations dedicated to the arts. This year, funds will be going toward the BUSD Art Docent program, Friends of the Library and CityRead program, Brentwood Writes’ Open Mic, Art Guild of the Delta, Brentwood Teen Theater and Ghostlight Theatre Ensemble.

“The Art, Wine and Jazz Festival has recently updated its name to include the word ‘benefit,’” said Grejsen. “Our community has enjoyed the festival for years, but perhaps does not understand that all the funds raised from this event go directly to support arts in our community. We would like everyone to know they are supporting a great cause here in town and are part of continuing the artful vibe going on around us.”

Grejsen says the 2019 Art, Wine and Jazz Benefit Festival will feature wonderful vendors and entertainment with performances by talented dancers and musicians.

On Saturday, the festival will feature the Brentwood Big Band, East County Performing Arts Center along with GroovaNova, Angelo Luster, Althea Battle, Ray Obiedo, Hannah Dotson and San Francisco’s Pride & Joy band. Sunday’s lineup will include local rock band Slingshot, Michael Rogers, Jeff Edwins, and popular San Francisco-based artist Leah Tysse.

“We always strive to include the local element in our festival,” said Grejsen. “Food and wine is local. Many art vendors and some of the musical talent is local. We also encourage the support and sponsorship of local business at our festival. We have been very fortunate to depend on solid, continuing support from a number of businesses in town.”

Grejsen says the assistance of volunteers helps the three-day festival run more smoothly.

“Everyone is encouraged to come and help in two- to four-hour slots to sell tokens and help within the festival grounds with many different small jobs,” said Grejsen. “A volunteer will then decide which art organization they would like to tag their hours for, so they benefit from the funds raised.”

At the end of the festival, funds are dispersed among the organizations based on the number of volunteer hours dedicated to each nonprofit.

“There are so many reasons to attend this family-friendly festival,” said Grejsen. “Music stimulates the spirit; art is good for the soul and wine is good for the heart. Just come relax, laugh, dance and enjoy the beautiful park setting.”

The Art, Wine and Jazz Benefit Festival will be held at City Park, 710 Second St. in Brentwood, on Friday, June 21, from 5-9 p.m.; Saturday, June 22, from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.; and Sunday, June 23, from 12-6 p.m. For more information, visit http://www.brentwoodartsociety.org.

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