Festival celebrates 50 years of art in Park City
Park City Kimball Arts Festival
5-9 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 2; 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 3; 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday, Aug. 4
Park City’s Main Street
The Park City Kimball Arts Festival turns 50 this year, and the public is invited to a party that will run Aug. 2-4 on historic Main Street.
The all-weekend event, which is a fundraiser for the Kimball Art Center, will provide some new offerings to celebrate its golden anniversary.
One offering is called Free the Fest, said Amy Roberts, the nonprofit’s senior director of marketing and communications.
All primary residents of Summit County and Park City will be admitted to the festival for free all weekend, she said, rather than just on Friday night.
Residents need to register by Friday, Aug. 2, to claim their free tickets. They can do so by visiting kimballartcenter.org, then picking up a wristband at the Kimball Art Center in advance. People must show a valid ID that proves their residence.
“When we planned the festival, we knew we had to have a great answer when someone asked us what we were going to do for our 50th anniversary,” Roberts said. “So we decided we wanted to thank our local community for its support over the past five decades.”
A new exhibit called “Festival Throughout the Ages,” a collection of photographs taken during the festival’s past 50 years, will fuel a bit of nostalgia for longtime festival goers, said Canice Harte, the Kimball Art Center’s events manager.
The exhibit will be on display in two locations — the Rockwell Room, 268 Main St., and the VIP Room at the Kimball Terrace, at Main Street and Heber Avenue.
“Park City was nearly a ghost town during the first festival, and the photographs show it,” Harte said. “The art was nailed onto walls and artists sat in patio furniture.”
The styles highlight the photos of the 1970s and 1980s.
“You see all those bell bottoms during the ’70s and then the big hair in the ’80s,” he said with a laugh. “We worked with the Park City Museum and The Park Record to secure some images for this exhibit.”
The display will also look towards the future, according to Harte.
“The Kimball Art Center, as we know it today, is located on Kearns Boulevard,” he said. “At some point in the near future, that whole area will be razed to make way for the Arts and Culture District. So the exhibit will show some highlights of the future as well.”
Another new offering to commemorate the festival’s half-century mark is a 50th anniversary souvenir T-shirt, Harte said.
The pattern, which depicts the Main Street Trolley decorated as a 1960s VW hippy van, was designed by Tamia Wardle.
“We put out a call for artists to come up with a design, and we received more than 65 submission,” Harte said. “We narrowed it down to three and then took votes.”
The T-shirts will be pressed on site at the corner of Main Street and Heber Avenue by Sara Sergent of Mountain Flower Apparel, he said.
“She will split the proceeds she makes from the prints with the Kimball Art Center,” Harte said.
Another 50th anniversary souvenir is the Park City Kimball Arts Festival water bottle.
“We will no longer sell single-use water bottles, but people can buy these festival water bottles and refill them up at four hydration stations we will set up around the festival.”
These water bottles will also be given to volunteers and the participating artists.
In total, 220 artists, who work in 13 different mediums, will be part of the festival this year, Harte said.
“We had more than 1,000 artists apply to be in the festival, which is the largest number we’ve received throughout the 50-year history,” he said. “The artists who are in the festival were selected by a double-blind jury.”
Alongside the paintings, sculptures, digital renderings and textile works, festival-goers will also enjoy live music on three different stages programmed by Mountain Town Stages.
The Main Stage will be set up at the intersection of Main Street and Heber Avenue. A smaller Food Truck Roundup Stage will be set up among a caravan of food trucks at the top of Main Street in the Wasatch Brew Pub parking lot. And the third will be a small stage set up in Miner’s Park, in the middle of Main Street, Harte said.
A children’s area will return to the festival, as well, according to Harte.
“The Kimball Art Center’s education department will provide certified instructors who will teach art to the kids for a small price,” he said. “And we’ll offer free face painting.”
Thanks to sponsorship by the Park City Hospital, the Primary Children’s Hospital will also have staff and volunteers at the kids area.
“They will help kids make decorations for their bike helmets, and talk about helmet safety,” Roberts said.
Adults can also make their own works of art at Studio on Main, she said.
“Studio on Main is the grown-up version of the kids area,” she said with a laugh.
Adults can also buy $75 tickets to a Brushes and Brunch that will run from 9-11 a.m. on Sunday at the Rockwell Room.
“People can mingle with last year’s best-of-show winners, and enjoy food prepared by Allora Catering and Events and mimosas and bloody marys,” Roberts said. “This is an opportunity for people to have an unrushed event where attendees can get to know the artists.”
Main Street is scheduled to close at 3 a.m. on Friday, Aug. 2, to prepare for the festival, Harte said.
Parking will be limited after the closure, Roberts said.
“We have partnered with Park City Mountain and Deer Valley, and people can park in their lots and ride free shuttles to and from the festival,” she said.
Selecthealth is also sponsoring e-bikes that festival-goers can rent for 30 minutes at no cost during the festival.
The promotional code is available at the Kimball Art Center website.
“It’s nearly impossible to park near the festival, so we encourage people to ride bikes, walk, take the bus to the festival,” she said.
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