Edmonds Arts Festival celebrates 61 years

More than 240 booths at Frances Anderson Center field
By Brian Soergel | Jun 14, 2018
Photo by: Brian Soergel The Edmonds Arts Festival is June 15-17.

The 61st edition of the Edmonds Arts Festival, Friday through Sunday, June 16-18, will bring thousands to town. It’s a regional event, sure, but attracts visitors also from outside Puget Sound.

The publication Art Fair Sourcebook has ranked the festival No. 1 in the state in fine arts and No. 2 overall in the Northwest.

Here’s a quick look at what the festival offers:

  • More than 240 outdoor artist booths. Art displayed and for sale will include paintings, photography, pottery, graphic arts, sculpture, jewelry, woodworking, and more.
  • Three indoor galleries, showcasing juried fine art from over 200 artists in sculpture, paintings, prints, drawings, photography, and more. All art displayed is for sale.
  • An outdoor amphitheater with a wide variety of performances including music, dance, and theater. Additionally, youth jazz performances are held in other locations.
  • Two food courts offering regional and ethnic foods and the Grotto, featuring wine, beer, and snacks.
  • Kids Create, providing supervised hands-on art activities for young artists.
  • Student art exhibit featuring young artists from throughout the Edmonds School District boundaries.
  • A festival store, selling logo merchandise and official festival posters by well-known Northwest artist Ned Mueller and student artist Elyse MacRury.

The festival attracts up to 50,000 visitors each year over its three days. It’s produced by an all-volunteer group of dedicated art lovers, and provides local, state and national artists with myriad opportunities while showcasing their best work.

All profits are directed to the Edmonds Arts Festival Foundation, which provides scholarships for art education, grants for teachers and local arts organizations, and funding for public art.

A humble start

In the festival’s inaugural year, the Coterie Club of Edmonds invited 15 artists to show their work at the Surf and Sand Marina, home now to the Senior Center.

Then known as the Edmonds Spring Arts Festival, Edmonds High School teacher Frank Cunningham suggested the idea to the Coterie’s Peggy Harris.

The next year, the festival was held at the American Legion Hall.

Edmonds oldtimers might remember the disastrous third year, when a decision was made to hold the festival outdoors, on Main Street between Fourth and Fifth avenues.

The weather didn’t cooperate, of course, and whistling wind sent pictures flying, and rain ruined many a piece of art.

After being held at the Carnegie Library (now the Edmonds Historical Museum) and other locations around town, since 1980 the festival’s artwork has found its home – inside – at the Anderson Center. The booths remain outside, though.


Edmonds Arts Festival

When: June 15-17. 10 a.m.-8 p.m Friday and Saturday, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sunday
Where: Frances Anderson Center, 700 Main St., Edmonds. Free shuttle parking from various Edmonds locations
Admission: Free
Information: 425-771-6412, www.edmondsartsfestival.com


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