Park City Arts Fest goes Y2-5K | ParkRecord.com
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Park City Arts Fest goes Y2-5K

Organizers of the Park City Arts Festival say they need 200 volunteers to sell tickets, greet visitors and help artists set up booths.

The Arts Festival takes place Aug. 1 to Aug. 3 and features 225 sculptors, jewelry makers, painters, photographers and craftsmen. New this year is an Arts Fest 5K on Aug. 2 at 8 a.m. The race starts and ends at the Kimball Art Center and includes the Poison Creek and Rail Trails. Participants receive T-shirts and admission into Saturday’s festivities.

Kimball intern Erik Daenitz came up with the idea of a 5K to attract a younger, more outdoorsy crowd to the Arts Festival. "Park City is a really active community," he said, "and we thought if we could just get some of the younger crowd and people who are active we would be able to remind people of what’s going on."

Daenitz graduated from Park City High School in 2005 and is entering his senior year at the University of Utah.

The college student and a few of his coworkers encouraged the Kimball to use social networking Web sites such as The Facebook and MySpace to get the word out about exhibitions, classes, gallery strolls and the arts fest.

Early signs of the Kimball’s foray into the web have been promising, organizers say. "We have a younger demographic with our presence on Facebook and with the 5K," Julie Hooker Baker, a representative of the Kimball, said. Daenitz estimated that the Kimball Art Center group on Facebook has 90 members and gets a few new members every week. Volunteers can sign up for the arts festival and 5K at http://www.kimball-art.org or by logging onto Facebook.

Erin Linder oversees exhibitions at the Kimball and helps select more than 200 artists from a pool of 929 applicants for the arts festival. "Our first priority is just to attract a high caliber of artists who are masters of their craft," Linder explained. She said switching to an online application for the 2008 festival increased the number of applicants dramatically. "They’re from all over the U.S.," she said. "Half are from out of state. We’ve just continued to build our reputation. A lot comes down to word of mouth."

Organizers expect 40,000 visitors to attend this year’s Arts Festival. Tickets for adults are $8 for one day and $10 for two days. Children 10 and under attend for free and locals get free admission from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 1. Baker said the size of the event sets it apart from other events on Main Street. Money raised during the weekend help fund exhibitions and community art classes, Baker said. "It’s a truly cornerstone event," she said.

Linder added that the Arts Festival is a vehicle to represent artists. "It’s a big deal to get selected," she said. Just because an artist gets in one year doesn’t mean he’ll get in the next year. It gives the festival a different look every year."

Jewelers and sculptors are particularly well-represented at this year’s festival, Linder said. "We definitely do rely on volunteers to make the festival work," she said. "We would love to get as much help as we need. We are definitely not to our goal."

Volunteers get free admission, T-shirts, lunches and good karma for helping, Linder said.

To volunteer, call the Kimball Art Center at 649-8882 or visit Kimball-art.org.


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