Record editorial: Arts festival’s colorful canvas offsets the weekend’s hassles |

Record editorial: Arts festival’s colorful canvas offsets the weekend’s hassles

We all know how crowded Park City has been at many points during the summer.

Sports tournaments made it difficult to move about on some days, holidays brought the masses to the community at other times and cultural events added to the evening traffic, too.

This weekend, though, Parkites should welcome one of the city’s true masterpieces, the Park City Kimball Arts Festival, as it splashes Main Street in colors for the annual three-day run.

The arts festival has a history stretching through more than 50 years of Park City’s modern era. It has helped shape the community’s status as a destination for the arts and is a core element of the cultural segment of Park City’s tourism industry.

It is thrilling for art lovers as they arrive on Main Street for their first look at the paintings, sculptures, photographs and other works on display in the artist booths. Many will leave with something for a blank space on a wall in a bedroom or an empty shelf in a living room. Most, though, will likely not spend any money on art. They will instead be on Main Street for the social scene, the dining and the entertainment.

Just soaking in the ambiance of the historic street is fine as well. The festival organizers, to their credit, have made it accessible by offering free admission on Friday evening to people who live in Park City and surrounding Summit County.

There have been suggestions over the years to move the event off Main Street, freeing up the street that weekend for customers headed into the brick-and-mortar businesses. We are pleased those sorts of talks have not been as prevalent recently since Main Street seems to be the best of the options even if it presents logistical challenges for the organizers, businesses and Park City officials. The festival would undoubtedly lose some of its charm if it were held elsewhere in the Park City area.

For those who are planning to attend this weekend, the bus system is the best choice. The Main Street core will be closed or heavily restricted to traffic and parking, leaving transit as the preferred means of accessing the festival.

But once there, the festival’s colorful canvas will offset any of the weekend’s hassles.

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