Village Venture celebrates fall, artists, Halloween festivities

Neil Noren (right), owner of Noren’s Nursery, shows off the variety of succulent and tillandsia plants at his booth alongside his friends Jason Schneck (left) and Justin Cioni (center) Saturday at the Village Venture Arts and Crafts Faire in the Claremont Village. The Village Venture features hundreds of booths with different arts, crafts and wares. / photo by William Hardy
Neil Noren (right), owner of Noren’s Nursery, shows off the variety of succulent and tillandsia plants at his booth alongside his friends Jason Schneck (left) and Justin Cioni (center) Saturday at the Village Venture Arts and Crafts Faire in the Claremont Village. The Village Venture features hundreds of booths with different arts, crafts and wares. / photo by William Hardy

Araceli Macias
Staff Writer

Local artists and community members gathered for the 39th annual Claremont Village Venture arts and crafts fair Saturday, which returned after a one-year COVID hiatus.

“I think people missed it,” said Ronnie Salazar, owner of clothing and jewelry store Dani and Ronnie on Bonita Avenue in Claremont.

A parade kicked off the event with marching bands and children in Halloween costumes walking down Harvard and Bonita street.

Food trucks and musical guests were also part of the entertainment along with the annual pumpkin carving contest.

Some booths also offered face painting, which was filled with kids while others even offered free flu shots.

Hundreds of visitors, many in Halloween costumes, walked through the tree-lined streets of the Claremont village admiring the local artists and business owners’ booths.

Even some of the pets wore costumes including pumpkins, superheros and smores.

The booths varied from vendors selling holiday inspired gifts, to others selling handcrafted doorbells.

The Pomona Valley Art Association showcased local artists.

Other booths included Priceless Pet Rescue and a golden retriever rescue which brought pets hoping to be adopted.

Kathy Biggs, a SoCal Golden Retriever Rescue volunteer, said the organization helps find homes for dogs who come from shelters, or are rescued from other countries such as Mexico and South Korea.

“We do like 600 dogs a year … we live off the donations,” Biggs said. “It’s wonderful to get out in public and let people see that we’re here and available…and that if they need a dog that needs to be turned in that we will take care of it.”

Lizz Redd, an artist vendor and La Verne resident, participated for the first time Saturday. Redd said she generally sells her art – of recycled material, glass and mixed media – on Instagram and at local farmer’s markets.

Local businesses, such as Rhino Records and the Village Grill, also opened up their doors to visitors Saturday.

Araceli Macias can be reached at araceli.macias@laverne.edu.

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William Zeus Hardy, a senior photography major, is a staff photographer for the Campus Times. His work can also be found at williamhardy.mypixieset.com.

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