ArtsFest Kicks Off in Downtown Springfield

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Regional Arts Council Previews ArtsFest 2012 _-5404201642119315345
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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — The 36th annual ArtsFest on Historic Walnut Street kicks off Saturday morning.

Artists were busy today gearing up for the weekend-long event.

133 artists will be here in Springfield showing off their skills and talents.

There are some new additions to ArtsFest this year that event organizers hope will contribute to a great weekend in the heart of downtown.

“We have 133 artists that will be on display all weekend long,” said Springfield Regional Arts Council Executive Director Leslie Forrester.

An artistic weekend ahead as artists gear up for the 36th annual ArtsFest event.

“It’s a great opportunity for family and friends to get together and have a wonderful spring weekend,” said Forrester.

New this year, the festival extends further west, nearly to Kimbrough, giving artists more space to work with and a little more breathing room.

“You’ve got so many wonderful, unique artists,” said Forrester.  “There’s something for everyone.”

Also on tap this year, alcohol allowed in the streets.

“Just Monday night, city council changed the ordinance of alcohol,” said Forrester.  “So for the first time in 36 years, we’re able to have beer and wine in the streets.”

“This is probably my sixth or seventh year,” said Artist Diane Thaemert.  Her company is “Two Charming Chix.”

Thaemert comes from Kansas City and says it’s the people here that help bring her back.

“The people,” she said.  “I love that there’s a huge turnout, people are friendly, the organization is perfect– all set up.”

Reinhard Herzog is a glassblower who spends three months a year doing work for Walt Disney World in Florida.

“I really enjoy these shows on the weekend,” he said.


His first time at ArtsFest, he says he’s looking forward to the next few days.

“I’m already excited,” he added.

Tickets for ArtsFest are $5 at the gate.  Hours run 10 a.m. – 6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. Sunday.

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