By Nicole Davis
Art, poetry and a day of entertainment. The Beech Grove Art Festival is returning to Beech Grove for its fourth year on Sept. 23, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. at Sarah T. Bolton Park.
Organized by the Beech Grove Artist Collective, this free community event includes 60 artists with work from a variety of mediums on display and for sale.
“Twenty of the 60 artists are from Beech Grove specifically,” said Kelsey Behl, Beech Grove Artist Collective president. “We’re really trying to build and maintain a great art scene here in this community and give artists opportunities to sell their work and show their work.”
There will be a DJ, MC Hook; live poetry readings; open mic performances; live music by INDYCA Music and more. Food for sale includes That Vegan Joint, Beech Grove Lions Club selling walking tacos, Silver Linings selling iced coffee, Papa Curl with ice cream, freeze-dried candy and more. There will be a bounce house for kids and access to the park’s playground along with a parachute painting of one of the large parachutes used in elementary school gym classes. After the paint dries there will be parachute games.
New this year, the festival will include a drum circle and a Poem in a Day contest. The contest is open to everyone and free to enter. Participants can write a poem during the event and submit it by the end of the day. The winner will have the chance to read that poem aloud during the event.
Last year the festival included more than 70 artists, which maxed out the space available at the park. This year, space was limited to 60 artists, selected from more than 100 applicants.
“There’s been a ridiculous amount of growth,” Behl said. “It’s a great day in the park. I hope (attendees) are exposed to some really great art and some things they’ve never seen before. I hope they get to hear some poetry read live, for maybe the first time in their life. Young artists can get inspired and see how it’s done.”
This event is in addition to the First Friday Art Walks that the collective has been hosting throughout the year. The next First Friday is Oct. 6, 5:30 – 9 p.m. along Beech Grove Main Street. That show is free for artists and makers of any kind.