Save the Date! Arts Fest 2019

By Kira Marshall-McKelvey

Get ready for some beautiful art, great food and exciting entertainment because Arts Fest is right around the corner! The 53rd annual Arts Fest is July 10-14, 2019. Pack your bags if you’re visiting from afar, throw on your favorite Penn State gear if you’re an alumnus or alumnae and head over to downtown State College for a weekend you will never forget.



Looking for some beautiful art to spruce up your home or to give as a gift? The sidewalk sale and exhibit has over 300 artists from around the country and features intricate baskets, ceramics, jewelry, fiber, painting, photography and clothing. Whether you’re looking for that perfect pair of earrings or a beautiful painting, you will be sure to find the perfect piece!

Don’t forget to check out the banner exhibit and competition throughout the festival route. These displays include past and present banners from children, adult novices and professionals.

The street paintings — formerly known as the Italian Street Painting festival — will be on Foster Avenue at South Allen Street this year. Weather permitting, you will get a chance to see the work of nationally recognized artists, as well as our own Nittany Lions. If you’d like to try your hand at street art, now is your chance! For only $5, you get your own set of pastels and a 14”x14” square to create your own masterpiece.

Don’t forget to check out a State College favorite: the sand sculpture! Full-time sand sculptor Greg Glenn will turn a 25-ton pile of sand into a beautiful piece of art. You can watch this transformation happen in real time as you walk through Sidney Friedman park.



After browsing some art, you can enjoy music from just about every genre all around State College. Visit Old Main Lawn, and take in the tunes of featured bands like Across the Pond and Front Country. If you’re looking for something more upbeat, check out the Allen Street stage for some local favorites, with bands such as the Nittany Valley Wranglers and Hops and Vines taking center stage. And be sure to head over to Sidney Friedman park to enjoy the music of Jackie Brown and the Gill Street Band and Eric Ian Farmer! To get access to indoor comedy and theater, just grab a $10 button!

All these exciting events are bound to make you hungry, and the Arts Fest has got you covered. Head over to Allen Street for some chicken on a stick, lo mein, gyros, fresh squeezed lemonade and more! If you’ve got more of a sweet tooth, grab some Strudel on Allen and Calder Way. With flavors like apricot, apple, cherry, cheese and almond, these strudels are sure to satisfy your every craving. Or take a bite of nostalgia and enjoy a classic State College treat from the Berkey Creamery tent located next to the Penn State Obelisk. Get a taste of Pennsylvania’s agriculture — including favorites from Centre County’s very own Tait Farms — with some artisanal selections located on Foster and South Allen.

For you alumni, take the chance to relive your Penn State days at Penn State Alumni Weekend. Wander down memory lane back to dorm life as you stay in West Halls and have breakfast in the dining commons. You will receive free parking, a complimentary Arts Fest button and a special “Behind the Scenes” tour hosted by Arts Fest staff and volunteers.



If you’d like to stay the weekend and you live outside of central Pennsylvania, State College has the perfect lodging option for you. If you’d like to stay close to Penn State, book a reservation with Days Inn Penn State. Only one block away from campus, Days Inn offers an indoor pool and fitness center. This hotel is pet-friendly, so you don’t even have to leave your furry family members behind! For some fine dining and a relaxing spa, check out Carnegie Inn and Spa. For more lodging options, click here


With art, food and entertainment galore, Arts Fest 2019 is bound to be an event you don’t want to miss!

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