Friday, October 19, 2012

Totally Texas -- East to Edom's Festival of the Arts

One weekend each October, the population of the East Texas town of Edom swells from approximately 375 to thousands for the annual Edom Festival of the Arts. This year, it’s Saturday through Sunday (October 20-21) -- probably the only time you’ll have trouble finding a parking place in this laid-back gem of a village. But even at its most crowded, you won’t have trouble walking all over town to visit the shops and booths of nearly seventy artists from across the state who will descend on Edom.

Originally started more than thirty years ago by some of the artists and craftspeople who call the laid-back community home, the festival got a re-do about ten years ago. Every year it gets bigger and more varied, with artwork from fine to practical, children’s activities, and musical performances.

Come with a shopping list of gifts for yourself and friends, but prepare to be surprised by the variety of arts and crafts available. Last year, I found wooden savings banks in the shape of buses and fire trucks for my grandsons and hand-woven cotton towels for my daughter.

This year, I want to take time to sample pies as well as art -- from the selections at the Edom Bakery & Grill and the Shed Café’. They’re located on either side of FM 279, the main drag through town.

The festival runs from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sunday. Free, and parking’s free, too, although last year I liked the easy access and modest cost of parking at Edom’s United Methodist Church on FM 279 (space is limited).

To get to Edom from Dallas or points west, take I-20 east and exit 540 onto FM 314, which intersects FM 279. Or exit at Canton, then east on Highway 64 to FM 279, to take in the shops of nearby Ben Wheeler as well.

For more about the festival, see  For the town and directions, see


While you’re in East Texas, consider going a little further, to Tyler, for the annual Texas Rose Festival, now through Sunday, October 21. For more information, see

(Next Friday -- a round-up of family-friendly events for Halloween and Day of the Dead.)

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