Megalodon Shark gets a makeover for Chalk Festival – News – Sarasota Herald-Tribune

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People can buy a ticket to be part of the team that restores the shark or create other group projects for the 2019 Chalk Festival

VENICE — The Megalodon Shark first created in 2014 at the Chalk Festival in Venice will receive a makeover this year, as artists gear up for this year’s festival, the “Garden of Wonders,” that is scheduled for Nov. 15 to 18 at the Venice Municipal Airport Fairgrounds, 675 Airport Avenue East, Venice.

Wenner said it made sense to restore the Megalodon, which people have always liked, and incorporated it into the new scene “The Lost World.”

“We’re going to add detail, then I’m going to add a panorama to the top, so instead of just the shark appearing as a triangle in the photo, it’s going to be a complete scene,” Wenner said. “In terms of the camera, when people photograph it … there will be dinosaurs and creatures and things — the entire age of the Megalodon shark, the Pleistocene.”

Wednesday morning, about 10 artists were busy mixing paint for the project.

“They’ll be creating all the colors of the Megalodon,” said Denise Kowal, founder and president of the Chalk Festival, and the nonprofit Avenida de Colores to support it.

A variety of sponsors donated 600 gallons of latex paint that will be used for the project.

Paint is mixed and then stored in large plastic garbage cans that will be taken onto the airport grounds, were 58 featured artists along with volunteers and patrons who purchase a ticket to be a part of a World Record Restoration Experience — one of four ticketed opportunities for the Chalk Festival Boot Camp.

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Between Friday and Nov. 14, there are two sessions per person, per day. The morning one is 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and the afternoon session is 3 to 6 p.m.

The $75 per person, per session ticket includes a four-day unlimited pass to the Chalk Festival, a T-shirt, team photo, certificate of participation, a 2011 Chalk Festival book and admission to the Nov. 19 morning after party. That experience is led by Julie Kirk, the professional 3D pavement artist who supervised the 2014 creation of Wenner’s Megalodon design.

The Garden of Wonder Maze Experience, which will run in two sessions from Nov. 11 to 13 at a cost of $45 per person per session, involves working with artists under team leader Lorelle miller to create the maze out of vertical panels.

That ticket includes the same extras as the restoration experience.

The Oversized Flower Making Experience, starts Thursday and runs through Nov. 14, with ticket holders working alongside artists under team leaders Lori Escalera and Kumpa Towarnprom, either from 9 a.m. to noon or 3 to 6 p.m.

The cost for that experience is $25 — essentially the same as a four-day pass to the festival — and includes all the previously listed extras.

The fourth experience, which actually started Tuesday and runs through Friday, is the Illusion Room Backdrop Experience. Sessions there are 9 a.m. to noon or 3 to 6 p.m. Tickets are $50 per person for session. Ticket holders can work with artists under the direction of Wenner, to help create an illusion room similar to the one he unveiled this April, when the Chalk Festival returned to Burns Square in Sarasota, after the 2018 Chalk Festival in Venice was canceled because of Red Tide.

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Tickets for the festival on Friday only are $5 plus fees. On Saturday, students are $5 and adults $10 plus fees; and Sunday students are $10 and adults $15 plus fees. Monday passes are $10 for adults and $5 for students — a four-day pass is $22.50 plus fees. Children under 12 are free with an adult and Veterans are free on Nov. 18, with a service identification card.

In addition to the pavement art and food and beverage vendors, a variety of bands will be performing during the Pavement Music Festival.

A portion of all ticket costs are tax deductible, since the Chalk Festival is a nonprofit. More information can be found at

Kowal noted that volunteers are still needed for the festival. As an added boon, volunteers can participate in the Nov. 5 to 14 Chalk Festival boot camp experiences for free.

Those boot camp experiences, she noted, are really mixers for the 160 to 170 artists expected to create art in Venice.

“Most festivals that you go to, each artist is very focused on their own project,” Kowal said. “But our event, we build a community.

“We have a global community and the whole purpose of this event is for these artists to meet each other and really spend quality time — that’s how we do it, through these group projects.”



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