2nd annual ArtWalk begins Wednesday

The "Rocket Fish' posters are in, and the brochures containing a map of artists and venues will be ready for Wednesday's reception marking the opening of the second ArtWalk in Grand Haven, said event organizer Steve Loftis on Monday. ArtWalk 2011 kicks off at noon Wednesday when Mayor Roger Bergman and other city officials create a live painting - working under the old Grand Theater marquis in downtown Grand Haven. An opening day party will be held at ArtWalk headquarters, 18 N. Fifth St., from 7-11 p.m. Wednesday.
Becky Vargo
Sep 20, 2011


In the meantime, Loftis, Randy Smith and other volunteers have been scrambling to finish the display area at ArtWalk headquarters. The location can be found by looking for one of the ArtWalk entries, a silver Airstream camper, parked in front of the building.

On Monday night, the display walls were up and the lights were in place. Loftis said they had some painting and final touches, then the artwork could be hung.

Artwork at the headquarters would not be part of the competition. That’s because people thought anyone who had an entry in the headquarters building had an unfair edge, Loftis said.

Smith said they are hoping to make an art museum at the location. “It will be that way for at least a year,” he said.

The large display in front of the building — “The Electric Trailer” — was originally a 2010 ArtPrize entry in Grand Rapids. The silver Airstream trailer, which lights up and plays music, was created by Grand Rapids artist Reb Roberts; with collaborators David Warmenhoven, Greg Smith, Randy Smith, Perry Seavitt, Jamie Van Eizenga and Tom Duimst.

Randy Smith said the trailer will be lit up for Wednesday night’s opening party.

A lighting ceremony will also be held at the boardwalk at 8 p.m. Thursday for the Mike Westra wind sculpture.

Highlighting weekend activities is the schooling of the “Rocket Fish” downtown and the “minnows” on the boardwalk.

Loftis said he expects at least 60 “Rocket Fish” to be displayed downtown and at least 220 “minnows” on the boardwalk. Everyone who has a “Rocket Fish” or “minnow” may bring them to the waterfront between 10 a.m. and noon Saturday to register them for the afternoon vote.

There will also be free food and live music. Voting goes until 3 p.m. and the winners will be announced at 5 p.m.

Click here to see the ArtWalk calendar for more of the activities being offered during the three-week event.



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