While visiting Wekiva Island, you might have seen the dozens of paintings that line the wall in our General Store. Or, maybe you’ve attended one of our monthly Wine & Paint events. They might leave you wondering—what’s with all the art at Wekiva Island?
We know many people know us for a fun day on the water or as their go-to local watering hole, but we’re so much more than that! We are passionate leaders in sustainability, and we have a deep appreciation and desire to support the arts. Those two tenets of our mission are tied up together in the Wekiva Paint Out.
Paint Out started in 2006, when William “Big Bill” Tippit decided it would be a great way to raise awareness for the Wekiva River during the Wekiva Riverfest. The first event was held in 2007. Two years later, however, organizers were planning to cut the Paint Out event because of the costs involved.
At that time, Bill Weinaug, the owner of Wekiva Island, had recently bought the property and was working to make it into the environmental haven it is today. He, too, saw the potential in the Paint Out event and agreed to sponsor and host it.
Today, we, too, know this event is the perfect fit.
If you’ve never been to the Wekiva Paint Out, it is a week-long celebration of plein air art. Artists set up shop along the boardwalk, in kayaks, at the bar and elsewhere to paint the natural views they see right in front of them. They are inspired by the way the light hits the palms or the water ripples, capturing everything we love about the beautiful, wild and scenic Wekiva River. Often, we hear from these artists how inspired they are by the parts of Florida that are still untamed—and we have plenty of those.
That’s one of the reasons we are so passionate about the Wekiva Paint Out. With each brushstroke, these artists are helping us raise awareness about what’s special about the river—something we fight to preserve every single day.
The event helps do that, too. Proceeds from art sold during the event are donated to support the Wekiva Wilderness Trust and Keep Seminole Beautiful, two of our partners in the community who share our mission.
So, come out and experience the Wekiva Paint Out yourself. From March 2-7, 2020, our artists will be on-site, and you can watch as they transform the landscapes you enjoy at the Island into amazing artworks. You can even take a piece home with you! Bid on your favorites at our auction from 7 to 9 p.m. March 4, or purchase a piece at our gala from 6 to 10 p.m. March 7 (a truly can’t-miss event!) You can even try your own hand at painting with the Quick Draw from 12 to 2 p.m. March 7.
We know if you stop by the Island during Paint Out, you’ll understand our passion for both art and the environment. See you there!