The Utah Arts Festival has numerous exhibits, artists booths, workshops, local music and national touring acts to entertain you. It is going on right now June 26-29, noon to 11 pm, at the Library Square, uaf.org
I was invited to participate in the annual Utah Arts Festival in downtown Salt Lake City. I had heard great things about it, but was seriously blown away with the sights and sounds when so many artists come together.
A minimal fee was charged at the entrance of the spacious area where streets are closed, and tents and booths are erected, and each one offering unique artistry, food or musical entertainment.
It was a warm sunny afternoon when we met some of our family. There is plenty to do for all ages, including face painting for children, art workshops and crafts. The Utah City and County Building lies on one end, the Salt Lake City Public Library and The Leonardo in the middle of the block with the Amphitheater near the entrance.
Every year hundreds of people create a “city of art” for the Salt Lake community. It takes more than a year to design and develop the whole event, and it lasts for four days. The talents of many individuals are combined to bring one of the nation’s best art festivals. Over 1,000 local volunteers help in a grand way to make the festival a success.
We strolled through the artist booths, and in most of them the artist was there to talk about their art, share their story and show you the goods. There is no pressure to buy, but you are welcome to take a business card if you are interested. There were so many different artistic specialities, including painters, 3-D artists, jewelers, stoneware, photographers, graphic artists as well as glass and textile artists.
Music lovers will enjoy the many venues devoted to sharing unique music styles, choreography, dancers, and performers. There were many concerts and performances to enjoy.
Writers shared their literary arts through poetry, readings, workshops, storytelling and even poetry competitions. Award winning short films created in Utah were shared and you could vote on your favorite.
I was enthralled with the performance of Australia’s Strange Fruit, a Melbourne-based performing arts company. It is a mixture of dance, circus and theatre as the troupe are perched on top of 5-meter high flexible poles, and they bend and sway in the air. It was very hypnotizing.
Scattered throughout the festival were venues to quench your thirst or get a bite of delicious offerings. There were culinary delights I had not seen before and gelato in flavors I had never heard of like “honey lavender.” Local food and offerings from other cultures were enjoyed. There is a First Aid stand where you can get free water by qualified medical personnel.
As an added bonus, The Leonardo is open and you can enter free of charge with purchase of a ticket to the Utah Arts Festival. We were thrilled with our visit to Animal Inside Out, A Body Worlds Production.
Honestly, there was too much to see. We could have stayed hours to take in all there was offered.
I’ll definitely make more time to see the Utah Arts Festival next year.