Works of art fill Fred Fuller Park

Sam Twarek

Festival showcases art, music and live acts

Kevin McCreary, a first-year Kent State graduate student in ceramics, works to mold 50 pounds of clay into a vase Saturday afternoon at Art in the Park. Elizabeth Myers | Daily Kent Stater

Credit: DKS Editors

Art in the Park video


A rainy weekend didn’t stop the crowds from filling Fred Fuller Park at the 14th annual Art in the Park festival over the weekend.

Artists chatted with passers-by, a glassblowing kiln roared and Boy Scout Troop 257 shouted its menu of roasted corn and sliced red apples.

Spectators could stop at 87 stands displaying various works of art.

“I like the layout of the booths,” Theresa Scott of Rootstown said. “It makes it easy to stop by each one.”

Nancy Rice, recreation supervisor for Kent Parks and Recreation, made it clear that the festival was full of legitimate, judged artists.

“It’s a juried show, so it’s not a craft show,” she said. “Artists must send in applications along with photos of their work, and two jurors go through it and accept or deny them.”

A new performing stage was added to the festival this year, in addition to a main stage

Performers on the Main Stage included Brad Bolton and Peggy Coyle, Northern Portage Band, Kent Brass Quintet, Hal Walker, Hillbilly Idol and Flash in the Pan and Kent State’s own steel drum band.

The Back Woods Stage hosted performers such as Chittlin’, John Jakes Mose, Chelsea Ryan and Halim El-Dabh, a composer and professor in the School of Music.

Activities and art booths included a range of returning artists, along with a few new additions.

The Snow Flake Tea Room of Stow put on an event to give spectators an idea of Japanese cultural customs and etiquette.

William Roddy returned this year with his popular exhibit “Painting in Plastic.”

“He set up a whole plastic tent and did paintings inside with spray paint,” Rice said.

Another booth offered photography prints stretched out on canvas that didn’t require framing.

If it wasn’t the art of the festival that attracted spectators, then it could have been the food.

Multiple booths sold “finger-licking food,” German beer, bratwurst, gyros and butterfly ribbon chips to hungry spectators.

Contact College of Art and College of Architecture and Environmental Design reporter Sam Twarek at [email protected].