Art, music, dance and more come to downtown
riverfront for Columbus Arts Festival, June 9-11
The Columbus Arts Festival celebrates the best in fine art and crafts in Columbus, June 9-11. Admission to this carefully curated, juried arts festival is free, with special Friends of the Festival VIP packages available. Produced by the Greater Columbus Arts Council, festival hours are Friday, June 9, 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, June 10, 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. and Sunday, June 11, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Hundreds of notable local, national and international artists representing 37 U.S. states, plus Belgium and Canada, will exhibit and sell their work at the 56th annual event.
The festival’s wildly creative vibe is amplified by Columbus’ recently completed downtown riverfront restoration, known as the Scioto Mile. Bicentennial Park and two architecturally beautiful bridges at Main and Rich streets rise above a green ribbon of lush, reclaimed parkland, which features 175 acres of green space filled with native plants, a winding promenade, sculptural water features, plazas, paths and bikeways.
New this year, the stunning sculptural creation of artists Cristobel and Samuel Wagner, Structural Circumstances E.G. 2, will bring a 24’ x 8’ mobile home replica crafted from brightly colored, transparent plexiglass to the east side of Bicentennial Park. The installation commission was the first for the Columbus Arts Festival. During the day, sunshine will project the vibrant, stained-glass-like image of the structure onto the viewer and the ground around him or her. Lit from within, the work will brilliantly glow at night. The Wagners hope the piece will encourage dialogue and foster deeper understanding between socioeconomic sectors.
Downtown Columbus’ Scioto Mile will rock, swing and sing during the 2017 festival. This year’s Main Stage will feature live performances throughout the day by popular local and national acts, including Dave Buker & the Historians, the acoustic band Tennessee Traffic, Andy Shaw Band and many more incredible talents. Headliners for the weekend are local bands on the rise nationally, focusing on alternative music, which continues to grow in popularity. The local alternative rock band Zoo Trippin’, takes the stage at 9 p.m. Friday. Rising pop, country and R&B singer Charlie Millikin performs Saturday evening at 9 p.m. On Sunday morning, a performance by the Columbus Symphony will be a highlight of the festival.
The Columbus Arts Festival also features three additional performance stages, including the Grange Acoustic Stage with multi-disciplinary performances and a diverse mix of music, from acoustic and jazz to bluegrass and world music. A second stage features more than a dozen local dance troupes and companies. The Ohio Magazine Word is Art stage spotlights some of Columbus’ most talented spoken word poets and authors.
Experience Columbus is the destination marketing organization for the Columbus region, dedicated to Columbus is a city unlike any other. Vibrant and alive, Ohio’s capital is known for its open attitude, smart style and entrepreneurial spirit. Columbus’ uncommon blend of neighborhoods, arts and culinary experiences, events, attractions and accommodations are made unforgettable by its diversity of outgoing locals who warmly welcome visitors. In 2016, Columbus was ranked “Highest in Visitor Satisfaction in the Midwest” by J.D. Power in the 2016 Destination Experience Satisfaction StudySM. Free travel guides, maps, online booking and detailed information are available at www.ExperienceColumbus.com or 866.397.2657 (866.EXP.COLS). Visitor information is also available on Facebook: facebook.com/ExperienceColumbus and facebook.com/ColumbusFoodScene, Twitter: @ExpCols and Instagram.
Columbus, OH received the highest numerical score among 8 cities in the Midwest in the J.D. Power 2016 Destination Experience Satisfaction Study, based on 26,124 total responses, measuring the experiences and perceptions of travelers who visited a top 50 U.S. destination, surveyed February-July 2016. Your experiences may vary. Visit jdpower.com.