Artscape is the largest FREE public arts festival in the country and it's happening outdoors and in tents for the 28th time in Mid-town Baltimore this weekend!! Over 350,000 visitors attended the annual event last year. Held at the intersection of Mt. Royal Avenue and Cathedral Street (near the Maryland Institute of Art and the University of Baltimore) , the event will run from noon to 10 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and noon to 8 p.m. on Sunday.
The festival features over 150 artists, fashion designers and craftspeople, visual art exhibits on and off site, including exhibitors, outdoor sculpture, art cars, photography and the Janet and Walter Sondheim Prize, incredible live concerts on 3 outdoor stages and a full schedule of performing arts including dance, opera, theater, fashion, film, experimental music and performances by the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. Free concerts include Dionne Warwick and Robin Thicke and many more. (Remember folks, this is FREE!)
There are family events such as hands-on projects, demonstrations, competitions, children's entertainers and multiple street theater locations. There is an amazing array of international foods and beverages available throughout the festival site.
Artists and craftspeople come from all over the country to participate. There is a fascinating display of "art cars" - cars that have been elaborately painted, decorated, bejeweled, adapted, built upon, etc. Five up-and-coming fashion designers will be competing in a fashion show.
If you can get into town to see this one, it will be well worth your trip. Artscape is definitely an experience and there is nothing else in the country like it.
If you are not familiar with the area (and even if you are), the best thing to do is locate one of the suburban Metro stops and ride the Metro into town (State Center stop) as there is very little parking in the area. You could also use the expensive parking located in the Inner Harbor area and use public transportation to the festival.
For more info, check out the website at http://www.artscape.org/.
I will miss this one as we will be out of town this year, but I'd love to hear feedback from any of you that do attend.