Arts in the Park Celebrates 43 Years

By Beacon Staff

After more than four decades, “Arts in the Park” is still bringing a diverse lineup of artists and entertainment each summer to the Flathead Valley.

The annual event, presented by Kalispell’s Hockaday Museum of Art, celebrates its 43rd year in Kalispell on July 22 through July 24.

The event, which brings together local artisans, musicians, food vendors and roughly 4,000 attendees for a weekend at Depot Park, is the year’s biggest fundraiser for the Hockaday.

On display will be arts, crafts and music from more than 100 artists and craftsmen and women, whose work will also be for sale.

The artists and their wares are chosen from a large pool of entrants, according to Hockaday communications director Brian Eklund.

“It’s juried,” Eklund said. “People can be assured that a jury has looked at the quality of the works and has accepted them.”

The Hockaday prides itself on putting together a diverse group of artists for the show, Eklund said. This year’s event will include jewelers, sculptors, metal artists, painters, woodworkers, fiber artists, ceramic artists and potters, leather artisans, glass artists and photographers.

The art will extend to the streets on Saturday morning, for the event’s classic car show in Kalispell, the Glacier Rally in the Rockies.

An emphasis in genre diversity also extends to the entertainment section of the weekend. There will be jazz, classical guitar, tap dancing, hula dancing, clogging and show tunes.

Food choices will include pizza, Mexican fare, shaved ice, and other concessions, Eklund said. Special Friends Advocacy will be have a food booth present, and Flathead Industries will have people working one of the entry gates, he added.

“That makes the whole thing really a community festival, because we have volunteers from all walks of life,” Eklund said. “We get everybody who’s interested involved.”

“Arts in the Park” is a family friendly event, Eklund said, as well as an alcohol-free weekend. Kids under the age of 6 get in free, while day passes run $3 and weekend passes cost $5. Attendees who purchase a weekend pass will also have free entry to the Hockaday all weekend, Eklund said.

Art shows in the summer are typical Flathead fare, but Eklund believes “Arts in the Park” has been around for 43 years because the community in the valley consistently shows support for its local museums.

“I think it’s been so successful because most people know that it’s the Hockaday Museum of Art’s biggest fundraiser of the year,” Eklund said. “It definitely keeps the museum going as a cultural center.”

“Arts in the Park” is open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission buttons can be purchased at the gates.

The Hockaday will have special hours during the event, and will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Sunday. Visit www.hockadaymuseum.org or call 406-755-5268 for more information.

Entertainment Schedule:

Friday, July 22

11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Stephen Jackman – Singer/Songwriter

12 p.m. – 1 p.m. Lee Zimmerman – Cellist

1 p.m. – 3 p.m. Cocinando – Latin Jazz Ensemble

3 p.m. – 4 p.m. Andre Floyd – Montana’s Original Blues Man

4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Tim Torgerson – Singer Songwriter, Guitar

5 p.m. – 6 p.m. Greg Grant – Classical Guitar

Saturday, July 23

10 a.m. – 11 a.m. Glacier Rally in the Rockies – Classic Car Show

11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Greg Grant – Classical Guitar

12 p.m. – 1 p.m. Feat by Feet – Tap Performance Company

1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Kelly West & Wonderfully Vague – Jazz Ensemble

2 p.m. – 3 p.m. Show Tunes – Your Favorite Show Tunes

3 p.m. – 4 p.m. Flatheader’s Square Dance Club

4 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. Western Line Dancers

4:30 p.m. – 5 p.m. Country Cloggers

Sunday, July 24

11 a.m. – 12 p.m. Steve Eckels – Classical Guitar

12 p.m. – 1 p.m. David Walburn – Classical Guitar

1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Halau Ka Waikahe Lani Malie – Hula

2 p.m. – 3 p.m. Drea.m. Dancers – Dance Academy

3 p.m. – 4 p.m. Tim Torgerson Band – Singer Songwriter, Guitar

4 p.m. – 5 p.m. Greg Grant – Classical Guitar

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