Houston, Texas, features one of the fastest growing artisan scenes in America, making it an ideal stop for a variety of art themed getaways. The city is home to sprawling theater and museum districts which contain more opportunities for art appreciation than almost anywhere outside of New York City. Whether you’re visiting one of the large scale regional festivals with tens of thousands of art lovers or a small gallery showing with a few dedicated fellow patrons, you’re in for a treat.
Bayou City Art Festival has established itself as one of the leading art events in Houston over the past four decades. This year’s festival will take place March 24-26 at Memorial Park and is expected to attract tens of thousands of attendees. Over 300 juried artists will be participating at the event, showcasing artwork from at least 19 different artistic disciplines. All of the art featured at the festival is original, and patrons will have the chance to purchase their favorite pieces. Families will love the Direct Energy Children’s Creative Zone, which is packed full of artistic activities for kids. In addition to creating memorable experiences for visitors, the event has raised more than $3.5 million for local non-profit organizations over the past 40+ years. We got the opportunity to interview Bridget Anderson, Executive Director of the Art Colony Association, to learn about this unique gathering of artisans.
RAL: How long has the event been running?
BA: This year we are entering our 46th year celebrating this unique event.
RAL: How many annual participants do you draw?
BA: Bayou City Art Festival draws 35,000+ combined attendees each year for both Bayou City Art Festival Memorial Park in the spring and Bayou City Art Festival Downtown in the fall.
RAL: What demographic does your event attract? Children? Families? Couples?
BA: The festival attracts art collectors, couples, and families. Roughly 75% of our attendees are adults.
RAL: What makes this event unique?
BA: Bayou City Art Festival (formerly the Westheimer Colony Art Festival) has a long tradition in the city of Houston. Every year, a new jury selects participating artists, some new and some returning. This helps create a fresh and different festival experience each year. The jury selects over 300 artists from around the country, showcasing 19 different disciplines to participate in the festival. Our guests can purchase fine art and meet the artists, all while enjoying entertainment and great food from local food trucks.
RAL: Take me through the activities of a day at the event.
BA: All guests can enjoy the Direct Energy Children’s Creative Zone, where our nonprofit partners host interactive art projects. You’ll also want to check out the gigantic bubbles with Hilary Scullane.
RAL: Will there be any guest appearances?
BA: Yes, guests can listen to a variety of bands and see local TV personalities.
RAL: What dining options will patrons encounter?
BA: The festival offers delicious food trucks and food vendors from all over the city.
RAL: What is the overall environment like?
BA: The event takes place under the beautiful Houston skyline in downtown during the fall. In the spring, we hold the festival in our beautiful and vibrant Memorial Park.
RAL: What can an attendee expect to find for local lodging?
BA: The great thing about Houston is our diversity. You can find mom and pop boutiques, hotels, and restaurants throughout the city. There are a variety of lodging options located close to both festivals, from reasonably priced hotels to high-end spas.
RAL: What does this event mean to the community?
BA: The festival been a tradition for 46 years. It’s a wonderful event that has provided a venue for over 20,000 artists to showcase their work to thousands of art lovers from all over the world.
RAL: Does the event support a special cause in the community?
BA: Proceeds are donated to non-profits in the Houston Community. Bayou City Art Festival has raised $3.5 million for local non-profit programs through the festivals.
RAL: Why should people come to your event?
BA: Bayou City Art Festival is an outdoor art festival like no other. The personal attention given to the patrons by the artist is one-of-a-kind. The atmosphere of our great city of Houston creates a memorable experience for all our guests. The festival provides something for art lovers, kids, families, and adults.
For more information about Bayou City Art Festival, please visit the event website.