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2021 National Veterans Local Creative Arts Festival

VA New Jersey Healthcare System is proud to present the 2021 New Jersey Local Veterans Creative Arts Festival. Out of an abundance of caution for the safety of our Veterans, this years Festival is being presented virtually. The entries and results are available for viewing and sharing online via links below.

If you would like to submit a piece of art work for the 2022 National Veterans Creative Arts Competition, please contact:

Kathy Ferrier, BS, MA, ATR-BC, LCAT

Art Therapist

Local NJ Creative Arts Festival (NCAF) Committee member

PM&RS-Recreation Therapy | VANJHCS


2021 National Veterans Creative Arts Competition logo


  • Across the country each year, Veterans enrolled at VA health care facilities compete in their local VA facility’s creative arts competition. 
  • The National Veterans Creative Arts competition and Festival inspire a sense of achievement.  They establish opportunities for development of new skills and recognize the progress and recoveries made through creative arts therapies.  The event spotlights the creative arts therapies of art, creative writing, dance,  drama, and music.
  • The competition includes categories in the visual arts, dance, drama, music and writing categories.
  • The only requirement for Veterans to enter the competition is that they are enrolled to receive care at a VA healthcare facility.
  • First place winners at the local competitions advance to the national level of judging where their entry competes against others from across the country who have entered the same category.
  • First place winners at the national level are invited to attend the National Veterans Creative Arts Festival (NVCAF).
  • Annually, over 3,000 Veterans compete in the local competitions from over 100 VA medical facilities across the country.


  • This is the 41st year of the Festival.  It will take place in St. Petersburg, FL in April of 2022 and will be hosted by the Bay Pines VA Healthcare System.
  • The Festival is hosted by a different VA and held in a different city every year.  (The 2020 Festival was held virtually due to COVID.)
  • The NVCAF is co presented by the Department of Veterans Affairs and the American Legion Auxiliary.
  • This annual competition recognizes the value of the creative arts and the benefits they serve in maintaining a healthy quality of life as well as the progress and recoveries made through creative arts therapy.
  • There is no competition at the Festival itself.  Veterans attend workshops, seminars, education sessions, and rehearsals.  The week concludes with the Veterans showcasing their art and writing in an Art and Writing Exhibition and their performances in a live Stage Show that is free to the community and highlights the creative achievements of our Nation’s Veterans. “