CREATING a buzz around arts and culture is the focus of a Valley-wide festival kicking off in Moe on Saturday before heading to Morwell and Traralgon.
It will showcase diverse talent from across the region, with art exhibitions, live musical performances, open-house studios and makers’ markets scheduled over the next three weekends.
The Latrobe Spring Festival 2015 is an expansion of last year’s Valley Art Festival, which organiser Roula Gavalas hopes will build an identity for the region.
“We want to get the general public really engaged and to start making people feel proud about living here,” Ms Gavalas said.
“Just to really lift the sense of belonging and that sense of liking being a resident in the Valley.”
Artists across Moe and Newborough will open their studios this weekend, with the Moe Art Society inviting the public to view an exhibition at Gippsland Heritage Park.
On Friday, 20 November, Latrobe Regional Gallery will host an Art After Hours exhibition and themed party, coinciding with a festival night market and outdoor cinema in Morwell.
The festival will finish off in Traralgon on the last weekend of November, with an art market slated at the VRI Hall and several art exhibitions.
This year’s program is the product of a working party spearheaded by ReActivate Latrobe Valley, who approached Ms Gavalas to expand on last year’s event.
ReActivate Latrobe Valley co-director Rosalea Monacella said the idea was to ensure such events would be sustainable in the long term.
“What we’re trying to build is an event that showcases the creative individuals and groups across the Latrobe Valley and slowly make it into a significant event,” Ms Monacella said.
“I think it’s definitely a trial we are setting up, that sort of profiles a whole range of activities and work.
“I think what it (the festival) highlights is there are a lot of activities happening across Latrobe Valley.
“I guess what we are doing is curating those activities under the one event.”
For more information on the 2015 festival, visit www.latrobevalleyfestival.com