June 10-12, 2022

at the riverfront in the Arena District

Columbus Arts Festival News

Bear Hands and We Were Promised Jetpacks to Headline 59th Annual Columbus Arts Festival presented by the American Electric Power Foundation on the Riverfront, June 12-14

January 28, 2020

Contact: Jami Goldstein
(614) 221-8492

COLUMBUS, Ohio — The Columbus Arts Festival, presented by the American Electric Power Foundation and produced by the Greater Columbus Arts Council (Arts Council), celebrates its 59th year of bringing the best in fine art and fine craft to Columbus on June 12, 13 and 14, 2020.

This year, in addition to more than 250 exhibiting artists, the festival is excited to welcome Bear Hands and We Were Promised Jetpacks on Saturday, June 13 for a free performance on the Bicentennial Park Stage, in partnership with CD102.5. Brooklyn-based Bear Hands is known for their punk rock offerings, while indie rockers We Were Promised Jetpacks hail from Edinburgh, Scotland. Both bands have toured extensively across the United States and Europe. The performances are supported by Huntington and Worthington Industries.

The Festival has been rated by AmericanStyle and Sunshine Artist magazines, as well as Art Fair SourceBook, as one of the top festivals in the nation and each year hosts hundreds of juried artists from across the United States, as well as several international artists. Performance stages featuring music, dance, theater and spoken word can be found throughout the festival, and hands-on arts activities, work by local artist collectives and a wide selection of quality food and beverages round out Columbus’ favorite outdoor summer event.

The overall ambiance of the festival is enhanced by the beautiful Columbus downtown riverfront. Known as the Scioto Mile, the waterfront includes Bicentennial Park, two bridges on Main and Rich Streets, lush green spaces and walkways, and mesmerizing water features along with plazas, paths and bikeways. The Festival’s home on the riverfront has brought in record crowds and drawn praise from festival-goers of all ages.

“We’re proud of how we have made the Columbus Arts Festival a must-do event for arts lovers of all ages,” said Sean Kessler, director of the Arts Festival. “This year we’re especially excited to offer free concerts from Bear Hands and We Were Promised Jetpacks, which should introduce new audiences to all the festival has to offer: more than 250 exhibiting artists, loads of local music, dance and theater performances, hands-on activities for kids, and great food and beverage options.”

Following are some of the exciting programs happening at the 2020 Columbus Arts Festival:

Four Entertainment Stages
In addition to showcasing local and regional musicians, as well as dance and theater troupes, on the Bicentennial Park Stage, the festival will include the Big Local Music Stage and Acoustic Lounge. The Ohio Magazine Word is Art Stage will feature spoken word performances including poetry and storytelling. Other major performances will be announced soon.

Big Local Art Village presented by CoverMyMeds
Columbus artists and artist collectives once again join together along Rich Street near Franklinton to present work for sale and a make-and-take and demonstration village at the Festival. Come meet some of Columbus’ most creative artists and learn more about art-making.

Emerging Artists
Started in 2011, the Emerging Artist Program was designed to promote central Ohio artists who are new to presenting their work at festivals. Artists from central Ohio are selected by the Festival jurors. In addition to a lower booth fee, they receive assistance from Festival staff and volunteers on how to best present and market their work to the public.

Patron Package
This year the former Friends of the Festival VIP Package has been renamed the Patron Package. Patron Packages include access to exclusive hospitality areas at the Festival; free water at beverage stations throughout the Festival; a private cash bar; private, air-conditioned restrooms and other amenities. Packages are priced at $125/person, and include a ticket to the Friday night Patron Party presented by The Ohio State University.

Patron Package sales support the $21,000 worth of awards presented to exhibiting artists each year. Packages will be sold prior to and during the Festival, and hospitality passes are valid the entire weekend. Tickets are on sale now; to purchase them go to columbusartsfestival.org/fof.

Meet the Art Shark!
Everyone’s favorite Festival mascot, the Art Shark, will be back again this year to mingle with fellow art fans! Kids of all ages can meet the Art Shark during special appearances onsite throughout the Festival weekend.

Festival Hours: Friday, June 12 from 11 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; Saturday, June 13 from 10 a.m. to 10:30 p.m.; and Sunday, June 14 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Please note: on Friday and Saturday artist booths close at 9 p.m.; artists have the option to stay open later.)

To volunteer at the Columbus Arts Festival, please go to columbusartsfestival.org/get-involved/volunteer.

For more information on the Columbus Arts Festival, call (614) 221-8625 or visit columbusartsfestival.org.

For a selection of high-res images, visit the Festival’s Press Room Images page.

The Columbus Arts Festival is produced by the Greater Columbus Arts Council.

The 2020 Columbus Arts Festival is presented by the American Electric Power Foundation. Additional sponsors and partners include Bank of America, Battelle, CoverMyMeds, G&J Pepsi Cola, Graeter’s, Grange, Hotel LeVeque, Huntington, IGS Energy, L Brands Foundation, Lasting Impressions, The Ohio State University, OSA Technology Partners, PNC, Reed Arts, Toyota, Vintage Wine Distributors, White Castle, Whole World Lemonade and Worthington Industries. Media sponsors include ABC6/Fox28, CD102.5, Dispatch Media Group, Lamar Outdoor Advertising, Mix 107.9, Ohio Magazine, Orange Barrel Media, RBX, WCBE 90.5 and WOSU Public Media.

The Greater Columbus Arts Council receives major financial support from the City of Columbus, Franklin County Commissioners and the Ohio Arts Council.

Mission of the Greater Columbus Arts Council: To support and advance the arts and cultural fabric of Columbus. www.gcac.org

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