Spring has sprung, and that means the Main St. Fort Worth Arts Festival is just around the corner. For the uninitiated, its one big party covering more than 27 city blocks in downtown Fort Worth. You can count on lots of food, music and, of course, fabulous artwork as part of a juried show. Here's are five new things to look for at this year's festival, which runs April 19-22
Catch 'em early
More "emerging artists have been added, meaning newbies who haven't exhibited at a large juried art show before. There will be 20 from Texas alone (and 37 Texas artists total). You can find an artwork from a possible future star in a section along Third and Fourth streets. Main St. Map - embed Returning artists include top award winners from last year's juried show, including Marvin Blackmore of Durango, Colorado, who won best of show for his Southwest-inspired ceramics; Matt Tumlinson of San Antonio, who won best emerging artist for his mixed-media works on canvases of brass bullets; and Thomas Diel of Fort Worth, who won a merit award for his art furniture made with an industrial-chic vibe. A total of 223 juried artists from across the U.S. will participate.
Gus's and Joe
This will make it even harder to pace yourself. This year, Gus’s Fried Chicken and Joe Riscky's popular barbecue joint will participate. Pro tip: Save room for a cream puff from Schmidt’s of German Village from Ohio. They join a food lineup that ranges from crepes and crawfish to corny dogs and Cuban food. Thai Tina's will be there, too.
Sippin' in Sundance Square
The Wine Experience is moving to Sundance Square Plaza, which will put it in the heart of the action. Look for tasting sessions throughout the weekend. Don't forget to raise a toast to the festival, now in its 33rd year.
More craft beer!
A second location has been added at Fifth and Main streets, featuring national and local craft brews. The original location remains at the Craft Brew Pavilion at the UTA Main Stage.
Friends of the Festival will get more benefits this year as part of their access to the VIP Hospitality Tent. They will receive complimentary beverages, a light dinner from The Capital Grille, and a prime viewing spot for performances. FOTF also get meet-and-greets with the entertainers and special tasting events all weekend. Find out more at http://www.mainstreetartsfest.org/sponsors/friends-of-the-festival/ Speaking of entertainment, the music lineup includes: Grady Spencer & The Work, Mr. Inez, Bonnie Bishop, and Tatiana LadyMay Mayfield (all on April 19); Pacific Mambo Orchestra, Shane Smith & The Saints, Midnight River Choir, The War and Treaty and the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra (all on April 20); Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Jamestown Revivial, Hunter Hutchinson and Tom Braxton (all on April 21); and Gary Hobbs, Brave Combo, Abraham Alexander, Latin Express and Kenny Broberg (all on April 22). To find out more about the music lineup and performance times, visit Main St.'s "Music on Main" page: http://www.mainstreetartsfest.org/experience-main-st./music-on-main/
Main St. Fort Worth Arts Festival
Produced by Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives
Downtown Fort Worth, from the Tarrant County Courthouse to Sundance Square Plaza to the Fort Worth Convention Center.
Hours: 10 a.m.-10 p.m. April 19, 10 a.m.-11 p.m. April 20 & 21, 10 a.m.-8 p.m. April 22.
Free to attend; tickets must be purchased for food and drink.
For information on parking, getting there and more: Download the updated, free Main St. iPhone or Android mobile app, or check out the event online at www.MainStreetArtsFest.org; www.Facebook.com/MainStreetArtsFest; www.Twitter.com/MainStreetArts; www.Instagram.com/MainStreetArtsFest