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Belly dancer Lauren Raqs will be one of the entertainers in the outdoor garden and market at Renaissance Under the Stars on April 2 at Winnsboro Civic Center. She will perform her sword dance for guests.

WCA to host Renaissance Under the Stars Gala on April 2nd

March marks the beginning of spring and with the new season comes the opportunity to enjoy warmer weather, outdoor activities, and festive gatherings. Winnsboro Center for the Arts (WCA) will hold its annual gala, Renaissance Under the Stars, on April 2 at Winnsboro Civic Center at 900 Wheeler Drive, Winnsboro, Texas. There is less than a month remaining to purchase tickets to Winnsboro’s annual premier cultural arts event. The Renaissance theme is new for WCA’s annual gala, and it is sure to be one of its best.

The evening’s activities will consist of two parts. An outdoor Renaissance Market with an ale and wine garden, live entertainment, and a variety of vendors will begin the festivities at 5 pm. Entertainers such as a belly dancer, a fire hoop dancer, and local musicians will entertain guests in the outdoor market and garden. The silent art auction items will be available for viewing outdoors as well; the artwork donations come from gracious artists. Imagine a smaller version of a Renaissance Festival right here in Winnsboro, Texas.

At 7 pm indoor activities get underway with dinner, live auction and featured entertainment by Emmy and Grammy-nominated Celtic fiddler, Máiréad Nesbitt. Nesbitt was one of the founding members of Celtic Woman and she is the featured violin soloist on all 11 Celtic Woman albums. Nesbitt is excited to return to Winnsboro to help raise funds for such a worthy cause.

The live auction will include some items from Nesbitt’s jewelry collection which she has designed herself. Other live auction items include a round of golf for four people at The Links at Land’s End Golf Course, a ride on a beautiful catamaran vessel with Scott Aboard the Seawolf at the Harbor in Rockwall, two nights at the serene lakefront Vildanden Cottage, and a private Paint & Sip Party for up to ten guests. WCA would like to thank all the organizations and individuals that have donated luxurious items and services to the Renaissance Under the Stars live auction.

A royal procession including a host of Renaissance characters will take place at the indoor dinner. The actors will be dressed in Renaissance regalia. Guests are encouraged to dress up in their best Renaissance outfits and join in on the festivities. Full-priced tickets include both the outdoor and indoor events, but tickets may be purchased for the outdoor market only. Guests may also consider choosing a sponsorship level and earn special perks and privileges at the indoor dinner including private Pavilion seating, handmade goblets for wine and mead, and dedicated personal servers. View the full schedule of events, the list of live auction items, the list of sponsorship levels, and purchase tickets at

Proceeds from Renaissance Under the Stars will benefit WCA, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, and its new performing arts center planned for 206 Market St. The new venue is designed as a multi-use space intended to host a wide range of community activities from concerts and theater to youth camps and wedding receptions. This space will not only serve the local community and the Northeast Texas region but will also benefit the local economy. When WCA attracts visitors from near and far for festivals, plays, concerts, and art exhibitions, those visitors also come for the restaurants, shops, and smalltown charm of Winnsboro.

With all the upcoming events at WCA, it is apparent that more space is needed. The annual High School Art Competition and Exhibition is currently in the WCA art gallery and the reception to celebrate the artists is from 2:30 – 4:30 March 20 at 200 Market Street, Winnsboro, Texas. With over 50 pieces, the WCA gallery is bursting at the seams with talented young artists’ work. This event would not be possible without the work of dedicated volunteers and patrons of the arts Mary Geisler and Lyn Baldwin.

Summer is right around the corner and that means summer arts camps for children. The WCA summer art camps are held at the Winnsboro Depot since there is not currently enough space for the numerous camps and the regularly scheduled classes and workshops for adults. A new performing arts center would be able to accommodate much more educational programming at WCA.

This summer, the camps will include four one-week art camps for various ages groups starting at six years old, a three-week musical theater camp for children ages 9 – 12, and two one-week intensive ceramics classes for children ages 9 – 12. Summer Camp Registration will open to WCA members on March 21 and then will open to the public on March 28. Read more about WCA summer camps at

Speaking of children’s programming, WCA presents a Children’s Design a Bookmark Contest in conjunction with the 2022 Winnsboro Festival of Books. The deadline to enter the contest is April 1. Children in grades K – 5 are invited to design bookmarks showing their favorite book or story. The first-place winner will be chosen by a group of professional artists and their design will be printed as a real bookmark and distributed in the community and at the festival for promotional purposes. The winners will be celebrated at the Winnsboro Festival of Books on May 7, and the festival will include many exciting children’s activities including hosting children’s authors, a story walk, story time art activities, and free books for children. Learn how to enter the contest at

John C. Maxwell once said, “Change is inevitable. Growth is optional.” The growth of an organization or a community depends on the support and compassionate actions of its members. Keep up with the growth and change of WCA at

Belly dancer Lauren Raqs will be one of the entertainers in the outdoor garden and market at Renaissance Under the Stars on April 2 at Winnsboro Civic Center. She will perform her sword dance for guests.