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Music Harvest: A Non-Profit Music & Art Festival held at Hunter's Ale House by local art group


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Alma 25-year-old Bryan Garcia paints a canvas at the Music Harvest festival on Nov. 7 at Hunters Ale House. 

Visual and musical artist from the Central Michigan area gathered at Hunter’s Ale House on Saturday Nov. 7 for Music Harvest, a non-profit music and art festival, hosted by Tree Love Collective, to gather among friends and present their art.

The Harvest Fest acted not only as a chance for local artist to show off their work but also served as a fundraiser for the Isabella Soup Kitchen and Pencils of Promise, a charity that aids in the building schools, paying teachers, and providing supplies to students in third world countries.

Entry into the event could be made through one of four options: 10 non-perishable food items, one frozen turkey, an $8 donation, or a $5 donation and four non-perishable food items.

Gordie Morton, a former CMU graphic design student and co-founder of the Tree Love Collective ran the event. The now growing business started as a Facebook page which served as an outlet to spread the word about local artists and their work.

“We saw a lot of our talented artist friends who were trying to promote themselves independently and we thought it would be a better idea if we created a Facebook page where we could promote all of those local artists on one singular page," Morton said. “If all the artist are supporting Tree Love Collective  and we are pushing their art from the Tree Love Collective then that’s more people coming to one singular location instead of local artists competing against each other for the attention.”

The event drew many artist, musicians, and vendors, including the band Red Wires, founded by four CMU students and Scott Lehmkuhle who was live painting at the event.

Lehmkuhle explained the draw of live painting.

“There are people who stop by and ask me ‘what are you painting’ and I won’t tell them," he said. "They come back at hour intervals just to check on my progress because at first it is just a bunch of blue blobs and in the end it is a masterpiece.”

Tree Love Collective’s have rapidly grown in the short time they began organizing their events. Their first ever event that was held attracted around 30 people. That was a two years ago. Now their events that are held at both Wayside Central and Hunter’s Ale House attract on average 300 people.

“A lot of (the artists) hear from word of mouth about what we do and get ahold of us to get those performance opportunities,” said Dream Coffee Shop Event and Art Gallery manager Jeremiah Bell, who is also part of Tree Love Collective.

“In the future we will definitely be doing more events like this. The hope is to be able to do a three day music festival," Bell said. “For a festival that is three days long (to get in) you would donate 50 pounds of food or an $80 donation and those would all go to a charity in the area. That is the end game.”

Tree Love Collective’s next event, the Renegade Art Gallery, will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 11 from 12 p.m. to  2 a.m. at 812 University Street in Mt. Pleasant.

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