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Festival of the Arts fills downtown

June 4, 2015
| By Pat Evans |
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Festival of the Arts
The Festival of the Arts in downtown Grand Rapids is one of the longest-running festivals in the state. Photo via fb.com

The 46th-annual Festival of the Arts begins tomorrow downtown.

The festival, which organizers say is one of the largest all-volunteer events in the nation, celebrates art in Grand Rapids and runs until Sunday, with hours of music, dance, art displays and food.

New app

This year, festival co-chairs Kellie Colosky-Garza and Cristina Buentello announced a new smartphone app for Android and iPhone.

The app, Grand Rapids Festival Info, offers mobile access to performance schedules and food booth lineups.

New food

Crowd favorites of elephant ears, souvlaki and fresh-squeezed lemonade will be available, and several new food booths will pop up this year.

Families Through Adoption will offer Ugandan and Indian food with vegan and vegetarian options.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation will offer a variety of wraps, while St. Isidore’s Benevolent Aid Society will feature Polish food.

St. Mary and St. Mina Coptic Orthodox Church will serve up Egyptian food.

A full list of food offerings can be found online, and all proceeds benefit local nonprofit organizations.

Performances

Dozens of musical and dance acts will take over five stages spread across downtown on Ottawa Avenue and Monroe Center.

Regular festival acts such as Ralston Bowles, The Steve Hilger Band, Valentiger and Nicholas James Thomasma will perform again this year.

A full lineup of the weekend’s performances can be found online.

Art

Various art stations will be available for visitors throughout the festival, and the Grand Rapids Art Museum and Urban Institute for Contemporary Arts will house activities.

Art sales will also be available in tents at Calder Plaza.  

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