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Arts & Culture

Get "crafty" at Planet Pottery

Planet Pottery Painting Studio (1108 A1A N., Ponte Vedra Beach, 543-1112) is the area’s Best Place to Get Crafty, where guests are encouraged to unleash their inner artist on unfinished pottery pieces. Each painted piece is glazed and fired to create a food-safe work of art that you take with you.

Artists and art lovers flock to the city’s urban core for First Wednesday Art Walk each month, a Downtown-wide showcase of local artwork, live music and people-watching. With so many things to see and people to meet, it’s no wonder that the event nabbed the titles for Best Art Event, Artistic Vanguards, and Creative Gathering.

Corsets, feather boas, garters and stockings are all the rage with the Bada Bings Babes (badabingbabesburlesque.com), a troupe of performers with a knack for bringing the risqué to the stage as the city’s favorite purveyors of Art On The Edge.

Grab a cup of coffee and peruse the shelves at Chamblin’s Uptown (215 N. Laura St., Downtown, 674-0868) or get lost—really, you just may—in the classics section of Chamblin Bookmine (4551 Roosevelt Blvd., 384-1685) to see why the two stores comprise the Best Bookseller around.

Street performers, fresh produce, live music and art vendors set up shop every Saturday, 10 AM-4 PM, at the Riverside Arts Market (under the Fuller Warren Bridge, 554-6865), the Best Cultural Bargain in town.

Joey Marchy, the man behind Urban Jacksonville (urbanjacksonville.info), has a sharp eye for local news and the goings-on in the city’s urban neighborhoods, making him our favorite Culture Blogger. Keep it up, Joey.

Two ladies tied for the title of Best Local Actress this year. Sammy Sutra is a co-founding member of Bada Bings Babes Burlesque, while Ashley Greene, a Jax native who now calls Los Angeles home, is best known for her performances as Alice Cullen in the Twilight movies.

Female-fronted Fit For Rivals (fitforrivals.com) nabbed the title for Best Local Band with its strong guitars, clean vocals and catchy hooks. The five-piece alt rock ensemble has played local stages and opened for originally-from-Middleburg-now-big-time-band The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus.

Players by the Sea (106 N. Sixth St., 249-0289) in Jax Beach consistently stages a lineup of theater classics and local playwright projects alike. With 45 years of performances under its belt, the community theater earned your votes for the title of Best Local Theater Group.

Best Museum Store goes to the Museum Store at MOCA Jacksonville (333 N. Laura St., Downtown, 366-6911), where art reproductions pale in comparison to the jewelry, home accessories, art books, and children’s toys for sale.