Gallery cruise is only the start of two art-filled weekends

The tour boasts 37 stops, including studios tucked all over, as well as other art venues and retail spots.

May’s First Friday gallery cruise will mark the start of two big weekends of visual art on Vashon, with Vashon Island Visual Artists’ (VIVA) spring studio art tour set to take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, on May 4-5 and 11-12.

The tour boasts 37 stops, including studios tucked all over Vashon, as well as other art venues and retail spots including VALISE Gallery, Vashon Center for the Arts, Outstanding in its Field Gallery, Swiftwater, Dig Deep Gardens and Anu Ranu’s.

Find out more about the tour and plan your stops at

Here’s a sampling of what’s on offer on First Friday.

Dig Deep Gardens

Pam Ingalls’s latest exhibition, “Facing our Queer Community: Oil Portraits Celebrating LGBTQ+ Vashonites” will open from 6-8 p.m. Friday, May 3, at Dig Deep Gardens’ Greenhouse Gallery. Daryl Redeker will be the musical guest at the opening. The exhibit will run through May and will be part of the VIVA studio tour from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, May 4-5 and 11-12.

Granny’s Attic

Vashon’s venerable thrift shop, which helps support health care causes on Vashon, will be open from 5-7 p.m. on May 3, offering a spectacular special sale of “Star Wars” and other science fiction-themed items. The store will be closed between 4 and 5 p.m. that day, to arrange the special items in the sale.


Puget Sound Cooperative Credit Union (PSCCU) will host artist and writer Sally Fox, an author, life coach, and painter. Live music will be played by “Catbird” — the duo Jim Burke and Mary Shackleford, who are musical and life partners, playing guitar, mandolin, and banjo. The reception, from 5-8 p.m. Friday, May 3, will include treats and beverages.


VALISE will be part of the Viva studio tour on May 3-4 and 10-11, showcasing all 12 collective members’ works in a show ranging from the zany to the reflective, with many styles and mediums on display. The gallery will be open from 1-9 p.m. Friday, May 3, with the show continuing all month.

Participating artists are George Wright, Lenard Yen, Hita VonMende, Pascale Judet, Bill Jarcho, Rachel Lordkenaga, Sharon Shaver, Jiji Saunders, Dot Cherch and Gregory Burnham, Rachel LordKenaga and VALISE’s newest member, Stephen Schildbach.

The gallery’s regular hours are 1-4 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays.

Vashon Center for the Arts

2024 marks VIVA’s 7th Annual Member Show — which VCA will host in May for the fifth consecutive year. This year, 86 local artists have artwork in the juried exhibition. The show includes prints, paintings, sculptures, pottery and more.

Vashon longtime resident and fine jewelry craftsman Eric Heffelfinger will also showcase his hand-crafted work in VCA’s Gift Shop. This collection has more than 15 stunning new pieces, including earrings, bracelets, chains, broaches, and pendants in gold and silver. Stones in this new collection include sapphires, amethyst, sugilite, and Kingman turquoise.

The VIVA Member Show runs parallel with VIVA’s studio tour. VCA is stop #19 on the tour with extended hours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on May 4-5 and 11-23. Regular hours are 12-5 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

For more information and viewing online, visit

Vashon Made

Janis McElroy is the featured artist in this shop on Bank Road – formerly called SAW (Starving Artist Works).

McElroy’s relationship with painting, beginning with an inspirational watercolor class, continues to evolve. A commission to paint nine separate yellow flowers inspired her to paint other themed series. Of these, “Mums” is the most recent. It was inspired by photographs taken by her friend Korena Bolding, the artistic director for the travel magazine, Virtuoso.

The series will be on display from May 3-31. An opening reception takes place from 5:30-8 p.m. Friday, May 3.

Vashon Senior Center

The Senior Center will host a meet-and-greet with artist Donna Caulton from 5-7 p.m. Friday, May 3.

Caulton is a painter with a background in multiple mediums: watercolor, printmaking, collage, and acrylics. Her work is included in public and private collections throughout the Northwest and Southwest. In the 1980s, Caulton, as an artist-in-residence, taught painting in the state prison system. Her work is represented in the King County Arts Commission traveling works collection. In 2007, she was awarded a painting fellowship at the Helene Wurlitzer Foundation in Taos.