Art at Rice Creek event had something for everyone

by Elizabeth Sias
Sun Focus Newspapers

With art demonstrations, music and dance performances, poetry readings and face painting, Art at Rice Creek has something for everyone.

Artist Cheryl Barr does a watercolor demonstration at the annual Art at Rice Creek festival Sept. 8 at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Sun Focus photos by Elizabeth Sias
Artist Cheryl Barr does a watercolor demonstration at the annual Art at Rice Creek festival Sept. 8 at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Sun Focus photos by Elizabeth Sias

Back for the 15th year, Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley hosted the art festival Sunday.

The Pavilion stage in the park featured free entertainment all day. Kicking off the festival was LadyJ Griot & Her Root Doctors, with KFAI host Jacquie Maddix sharing a lively mix of blues, blues history and black history through storytelling and live music.

With dancing statues, blooming flowers and children welcoming the New Year, the CAAM Chinese Dance Theater celebrated Chinese cultural heritage through the universal language of dance.

Lyric Arts Main Street Stage performed an original piece of theater titled “I Am, We Are.” The piece was newly created by a small group of volunteer actors and artists and shaped from words written by community members who were asked to share ideas about themselves.

Two local authors, Andy Sturdevant and William D. Waltz, also took the stage. Sturdevant shared writings from his forthcoming collection “Potluck Supper with Meeting to Follow.” Waltz read from his recent poetry collection “Zoo Music.”

Prairie Fire Lady Choir, a group of more than 40 women, performed new songs written and arranged by members of the choir, as well as original arrangements of popular songs.

And bringing the festival to a close was the Fridley City Band.

Booths featured everything from photography to handmade wall tapestries, watercolor paintings and beaded jewelry.

Demonstrations and workshops in drawing, painting, print making and face painting also took place throughout the day of the festival, attracting children and adults alike.

Inside the Banfill-Locke building, visitors were invited to participate in an art scavenger hunt with the current exhibition JKM: Josie Winship+Krista Kelley Walsh+Mary Esch. The three artists also held a collaborative collage making  workshop during the festival.

Visitors helped support the festival and Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts by purchasing raffle tickets, with the first prize being a handmade wall quilt featuring a nature scene of Rice Creek. Second prize was a five-year membership to the center and the third prize was a $50 gift certificate to the center.

For more information, visit banfill-locke.org.

From left, 8-year-old Maddie Londgren and 9-year-old Julianne Mason paint the covers of their art journals Sunday during the Art at Rice Creek festival at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Demonstrations and workshops were a popular feature of the festival, including art journal making with Suzi McArdle. Sun Focus photos by Elizabeth Sias Artist Cheryl Barr does a watercolor demonstration at the annual Art at Rice Creek festival Sept. 8 at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Jim Young, left, paints a rainbow on 5-year-old Evelyn Williams during the Art at Rice Creek festival Sept. 8 at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Scott Dercks plays guitar between featured performances Sunday during the Art at Rice Creek festival at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. The Prairie Fire Lady Choir sings Sept. 8 during the Art at Rice Creek festival at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. The annual art festival featured live music and dance performances throughout the day. Susan Boeckmann, left, shows 7-year-old Jennifer Spohn how to make a print Sunday during the Art at Rice Creek festival at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. The print making workshop was one of several demonstrations during the day. Deb Schanilec prepares materials to make a collage during the collaborative college making workshop with Josie Winship, Krista Kelley Walsh and Mary Esch during the Art at Rice Creek festival Sept. 8, at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley.
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From left, 8-year-old Maddie Londgren and 9-year-old Julianne Mason paint the covers of their art journals Sunday during the Art at Rice Creek festival at Banfill-Locke Center for the Arts in Fridley. Demonstrations and workshops were a popular feature of the festival, including art journal making with Suzi McArdle. Sun Focus photos by Elizabeth Sias

Elizabeth Sias is at [email protected]