“We’ve kept the best of ArtWalk and kept it lean, mean and fun,” Main Street Executive Director Diane Sheridan said.
According to Sheridan, there are 142 artists who’ve entered 150 different pieces in this year’s competition, with more than 50 ArtWalk venues displaying art.
During the event, the public will have an opportunity to vote for their favorite piece of art in each of five categories: Drawing, Painting, Photography, Sculpture (3-D) and Mixed Media. A panel of jurors will also pick winners for each category.
Along with public judging and juried voting, ArtWalk 2017 will feature a series of special events that highlight the arts. Arts-related special activities will also take place at Loutit District Library to complement the annual event.
“Our goal is to continually improve the art competition, events and activities while preserving the integrity and appeal of ArtWalk,” said ArtWalk organizer Steve Loftis. “To that end, we have added a few events and fine-tuned others to create a lineup that is fun and funky, and sure to keep people coming back for more.”
ArtWalk 2017 kicks off with a ceremonial ribbon cutting at 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 28, at the Washington Avenue mid-block crosswalk between First and Second streets.
From 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30, ArtWalk Family Art Day will take place near the train depot on Harbor Drive. Kids can work with artists from Lakeshore Visual Arts Collective to create their own masterpiece, and there will be food and live music.
From 1-4 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 1, ArtWalk features Music on First with Sweet Lou and the Savages, who will perform live on North First Street, between Columbus and Washington. Many of the ArtWalk artists will be located throughout downtown at their entries to greet the public and discuss their inspiration.
ArtWalk has once again partnered with Loutit District Library to host the ArtWalk Youth Competition, which takes place Sept. 20 through Oct. 8. Voting for the Youth Competition closes Oct. 2, and the winners will be announced the next day.
“We’re anticipating more than 100 student artists this year,” Sheridan said.
The main ArtWalk award ceremony is scheduled to take place at 6 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 5, at the Grand Haven Community Center. It is open to the public.
The final day to view the art is Sunday, Oct. 8, when ArtWalk 2017 closes.