The largest arts festival in Texas and one of the finest in the U.S. is returning to Downtown Fort Worth for its 29th year on April 10-13, 2014. Presented by Coors Distributing Company of Fort Worth and produced by Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc., the four-day MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival (MAIN ST.) spans more than 27 blocks from the Tarrant County Courthouse to the Fort Worth Convention Center while showcasing 213 hand-selected juried artists.
Also billed as Fort Worth’s largest, free music festival, MAIN ST. features 120 distinct performances throughout the weekend, including local and national entertainment acts and musicians, performance artists, dancers and street performers. Culinary options from local restaurants, beer and wine tastings, family-friendly arts-and-crafts activities and more complete the scene, providing four days of excitement on the historic red bricks of Main Street and throughout the beautiful new Sundance Square Plaza.
“The MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival has become the city’s most beloved annual event, and, even more importantly, continues to fulfill its original purpose of changing perspectives and enhancing the quality of life of Downtown Fort Worth,” said Marilyn Ackmann, chairman of the Festivals and Events Committee for Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc., the producers of MAIN ST. “The Festival has also been a major catalyst for our city’s cultural growth by welcoming and bringing together people from all sides of life, from local cowboys, foodies and music lovers to artistic mavens, gallery owners and global art dealers and collectors. It is because of these reasons that MAIN ST. has risen to be one of the top-rated, fine arts festivals in the country and received worldwide acclaim and recognition.”
STAR OF THE SHOW: THE ART
In addition to being the largest arts festival in Texas and in the Southwest region of the United States, MAIN ST. is annually ranked as one of the finest arts festivals in the U.S., as referenced in both the Art Fair Sourcebook and The Harris List.
Art enthusiasts can choose from a variety of creative and original works of art from 15+ mediums, such as sculpture, painting, digital, fiber, printmaking, mixed media, ceramics, photography, wood, glass, jewelry, and metalwork, with more than $4.6 million worth of art expected to be sold. MAIN ST. is a juried art fair, which means that artists must submit their work to an esteemed panel of national and local judges before being selected to exhibit. Of the nearly 1,400 applications received, only 213 artists were selected to exhibit at the 2014 festival, including the 26 award-winning artists from the 2013 festival. Each exhibiting artist will be present at their corresponding booths during festival hours to discuss their work and explain the processes and materials used in displayed works.
Details including artist statements, booth numbers, contact information and more can be found on MAIN ST.’s iPhone application or on its website’s “Fine Art Showcase,” here: www.MainStreetArtsFest.org/Experience-Main-St./The-Art/.
MUSIC ON MAIN!
This year’s MAIN ST. will be jamming with free, live music beginning at 11 a.m. daily during all four days of the festival, bringing to Downtown Fort Worth the biggest names in country, rock, folk, blues, jazz, Latin rock and more. More than 100 national, regional and local musicians will entertain on three different stages, including performances from the Fort Worth Symphony Orchestra and the Fort Worth Opera, five-time Grammy Award-winning blues guitarist Robert Cray, chart-topping hybrid country / rock vocal group The Mavericks, nine-time Grammy Award-winning Latin jazz pianist Eddie Palmieri, Austin-based eclectic singer / songwriter Bob Schneider, the 2013 Van Cliburn International Piano Competition gold medal winner Vadym Kholodenko, and more than 10 performances from the world-famous Chinese Acrobats who will demonstrate acrobatic stunts and feats of balance, flexibility, coordination and strength.
“Performances by Fort Worth’s world-renowned, resident performing arts organizations is an incredibly special and wonderful addition to MAIN ST.,” said Jay Downie, the festival’s producer. “The new Sundance Square Plaza provides a vibrant, engaging venue for the FWSO, Opera and Cliburn performances. The willingness of these organizations to showcase their talents to thousands of patrons during our Downtown celebration is a special opportunity for our guests and visitors.”
Details including a comprehensive entertainment schedule, musician biographies, stage sponsors, and performance dates and times can be found on MAIN ST.’s “Music on MAIN” page, here: www.MainStreetArtsFest.org/Experience-Main-St./Music-On-Main/.
MAIN ST. is bringing back “festival-favorites” and the best in local cuisine in 2014, allowing revelers to experience a wide range of culinary arts. Whether it’s tenderloin tamales or brisket tacos from Reata, smoked turkey legs or authentic Texas BBQ from Riscky’s, Louisiana crawfish from the Crawfish Connection, German bratwurst or “Bahama Mamas” from Schmidt’s Of German Village, handmade crepes from Crepe Crazy, zesty chicken fajita nachos or steak fajitas from Bobby’s Fajitas, or original corny dogs from Fletcher’s and McKinney’s, festival-goers have choices to satisfy almost any taste bud.
Soft drinks, smoothies, iced tea and lemonade as well as beer, margaritas, Mojitos, and Texas wines will also be available for sale. To buy food and beverages, coupons are required, and can be purchased in-person at the MAIN ST. ticket booths or in advance online, here: Store.MainStreetArtsFest.org.
In addition, to help support and raise awareness for water conservation, the Tarrant Regional Water District will be sponsoring free water stations throughout the festival, featuring Fort Worth’s nationally renowned municipal water dispensed with a state-of-the-art U/V filtration system and chilled to perfection.
FUN FOR ALL AGES AT “MAIN ST. CREATES!”
The family-favorite “MAIN ST. Creates!” program, presented by Wells Fargo, is back for 2014 and will anchor the north end of the festival. The hands-on, arts-and-crafts outdoor art studio is home to the Young People’s Art Fair (featuring the work of more than 300 student artists from the Fort Worth community), children’s entertainment, educational programs, and interactive activities, such as ceramic painting, art demonstrations, clay sculpting, and rock climbing.
“MAIN ST. Creates!” is open from 10 a.m. – 9 p.m. on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (April 10-12), and from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday (April 13). More details can be found online, here: www.MainStreetArtsFest.org/Experience-Main-St./Main-St-Creates.
OTHER WAYS TO PARTICIPATE
- Volunteer! MAIN ST. Volunteers are the “wonder team” behind the success of the nationally ranked MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival. The event simply could not take place without the hard work and dedication of more than 1,200 volunteers who handle everything from festival support to hospitality services to merchandise sales. Perks for MAIN ST. volunteers include complimentary commemorative MAIN ST. t-shirts, beverages, discounts on official MAIN ST. merchandise, and eligibility for prize giveaways. More details can be found online, here: http://bit.ly/MAINVolunteer.
- Join The Collector’s Club! The Collector’s Club is an exclusive group of members that enjoy art seminars, social events, complimentary valet parking, dinners, VIP Skybox access, and Art Purchase Gift Certificates, valid towards artwork purchases at MAIN ST. Interested members can join at either the Premier Collector ($325 for singles / $550 for couples) or Young Collector ($225 for singles / $350 for couples) levels. More details can be found online, here: http://bit.ly/MAINSTCollector.
- Become a “Friend of the Festival!” Friends of the Festival provide recognition and networking opportunities for businesses large and small, with added perks including company logo placements on MAIN ST. press materials and programs, complimentary dinners and beverages, Skybox access, valet parking, commemorative MAIN ST. fleece jackets, and signature entertainment, all alongside Fort Worth’s movers and shakers. Interested businesses can join at either the Gold ($2,500), Silver ($1,500), or Bronze ($750) levels. More details can be found online, here: http://bit.ly/MAINFriend.
NEW FOR 2014
- 2014 marks the debut of the new Sundance Square Plaza, a pedestrian-only, 55,000-square-foot outdoor venue featuring 32-foot-tall umbrella shade structures, hundreds of jetted interactive water fountains, pools, waterfalls and cascades, a permanent two-tiered multi-purpose stage complete with LED stage lighting and audiovisual equipment, bicycle racks, seating, and indigenous plants and landscaping in the heart of downtown on Main Street between 3rd and 4th Streets. The plaza will serve as the location for the renewed MAIN ST. “Artist’s Square,” as well as the new Performing Arts Stage, one of three entertainment stages throughout the festival.
- Give the gift of MAIN ST. art with Art Purchase Gift Certificates, valid for any art purchases made from participating artists at the 2014 MAIN ST. The refundable certificates are available in the amounts of $25 – $100 and are currently for sale online, here: Store.MainStreetArtsFest.org.
- A 2014 MAIN ST. festival guide, complete with information pertaining to parking, public transportation, access, street closures, accommodations, and much more, will be available online in late March.
MAIN ST. traces its beginnings to the early 1980s when the City of Fort Worth set in motion a campaign of urban revitalization in the Central Business District. As momentum began to build, businessman Robert Bass spearheaded the initial effort in 1986 to create an event showcasing the attractions of the city’s reawakening downtown core.
Mr. Bass and other prominent civic leaders envisioned a multi-faceted festival that would transform downtown into an outdoor gallery and concert stage on an early spring weekend. The inaugural MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival was a three-day event involving 140 artists, 60 performance groups and 600 volunteers. Attendance was approximately 80,000.
Nearly three decades later, Downtown Fort Worth has become a thriving, 24-hour live-work-play environment. The MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival, meanwhile, has followed a parallel trajectory, evolving into the biggest and best-attended event of its kind in the Southwest.
MAIN ST. is annually produced by Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc., and is free to the public. Festival hours* for 2014 are:
- Thursday, April 10: 10 a.m. – 10 p.m.
- Friday, April 11: 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
- Saturday, April 12: 10 a.m. – 11 p.m.
- Sunday, April 13: 10 a.m. – 8 p.m.
*Note artists may close at 8 p.m. on Thursday through Saturday, and at 6 p.m. on Sunday. Many, however, stay open later to accommodate the evening’s music audience.
For additional event information, visit MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival online at www.MainStreetArtsFest.org, “like” its Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/MainStreetArtsFest, follow it on Twitter at www.Twitter.com/MainStreetArts, or download the official MAIN ST. iPhone app via the iTunes App Store℠, here: bit.ly/MainStreetiPhone.
ABOUT MAIN ST. FORT WORTH ARTS FESTIVAL
The MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival celebrates its 29th year in 2014 and is presented by Coors Distributing Company of Fort Worth. Official Sponsors for 2014 are the Tarrant Regional Water District, Sundance Square, the University of Texas at Arlington, and Wells Fargo. Media Sponsors include the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the Fort Worth Transportation Authority (The T) and its Trinity Railway Express (TRE), 92.1 HANK FM (KTFW-FM), and 95.9 The Ranch (KFWR-FM). Supporting Sponsors include the Dallas/Fort Worth Professional Musicians Association and the Fort Worth Convention & Visitors Bureau.
The MAIN ST. Fort Worth Arts Festival is produced by Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization formed in 1988 to complement the work of Downtown Fort Worth, Inc. and the Public Improvement District by providing a funding pathway for charitable, educational and public-purpose activities, such as community festivals, residential development and park management. Downtown Fort Worth Initiatives, Inc. also produces the XTO Energy Parade of Lights. These events have an economic impact of more than $27 million annually and attract thousands of visitors to Downtown Fort Worth each year. For more information, visit www.DFWI.org.
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