By Shelby Clark Petkus
Make a “fool” of yourself this April in Ann Arbor when WonderFool Productions hosts two events in Ann Arbor: Festifools and FoolMoon.
Foolmoon is a unique, moonlight event on Friday, April 4. Starting at dusk and running until midnight, the free event will feature a procession of the community, with handmade illuminated sculptures and dancing “merrymakers.” The parade will end at Washington and Ashley in downtown Ann Arbor; the Farmer’s Market at Kerrytown, UMMA and Slauson Middle School will all serve as the starting places beginning at around 8 p.m. In addition to the art on display throughout the procession, candlelit treats and craft-brewed spirits will also be on hand. Other unique twists of the event include shadow puppet performances, experimental films and more.
Grizzly Peak will have a “FoolBrew” tent preceding the event at 5:30 p.m. Live music, a specialty brewed beer (called FoolBrew) and more will be featured. Grizzly Peak Brewing Company is at 120 W. Washington St., Ann Arbor.
Not sure how to join in, or what “luminaries” are? A luminary is a “glowy” sculpture. Festifools.org offers a variety of tutorials on how to make these special masks, sculptures and more. WonderFools is also sponsoring Sunday workshops at 10 a.m. at Workantile, 118 S. Main St., Ann Arbor. The workshops are free, with a suggested donation of $10.
Following FoolMoon, WonderFools will host Festifools. The festival, considered a “gigantic public art spectacular,” kicks off Ann Arbor’s outdoor festival season. Created by community members and University of Michigan students, the event is unique in its duration: one hour. Working with the same mentality of Foolmoon, thousands of human-powered paper-mache puppets, masks and other works of art will fill the streets of downtown Ann Arbor. Look for “magnificent, huge, bizarre and politically incorrect” works. A secret panel of judges will observed all performances and art, granting the “most fun, foolish and impressive creation” with a Grand Fool trophy.
Festifools 2014 begins at 4 p.m. on Sunday, April 6 in downtown Ann Arbor. Festivities will begin on Main Street, between Washington and William. The event is free and open to all.
WonderFool Productions is dedicated to raising public art awareness and engaging communities with collaborative, educational and dynamic art experiences. The “fool” events are inspired by the floats and paper-mache works used in Italy, as well as Superior Concept Monsters, a professional arts workshop. Since April 1, 2007, FestiFools has been flooding Ann Arbor with music, art and fun. The event’s been praised by the Ann Arbor News and Mayor John Hieftje and is now supported by U-M.
For further details on WonderFool and their “foolish” events, call 734-763-7550 or check out http://www.festifools.org.