MADISON – The Main Street Art Walk returns to Madison on July 5 from 3-6 p.m. as community artists will display their work for purchase by attendees.
The last event held by the not-for-profit organization was in October of 2019 but organizer Teena Merlin said that while Coronavirus concerns saw the March date canceled, stations for the artists will be set up carefully and will observe social distancing measures.
“With consideration for COVID, each artist will have a space set up the size of a parking spot and each artist will have one parking spot between them,” she said. “Normally we work around the cars that are parked there and we certainly don’t want to disturb traffic or the normal flow of the street.”
Merlin said that generally, the Boone County Library is the cut off point for the walk but that will be determined by artist participation more than any other element.
“Part of the beauty of the art walk is that it allows the artists to network with each other,” she added. “They are close enough to be able to talk about the events they’ve been to, whether they made any money and if it was a good experience while observing (social distancing) guidelines. The art walk allows the artist the ability to make contacts that they may not be able to make otherwise.”
Merlin added that concerns regarding COVID-19 has made some artists unsure of their participation and she expects some last-minute registrations, which she encourages and welcomes.
“We’ve seen crochet, jewelry, yard art, primitive art, painting and wreaths along with sketch artists among others,” she said. “We see a lot of diversity and that is one of the things that makes it special.”
Merlin added that while some in the community may think that they don’t have art acquisition in their household budget, she said that this notion may be a misconception about the walk.
“From that perspective if you can’t afford to buy anything it is really neat to see what the people in your town are capable of and it is free to browse and you can feel free to think of it as a local mobile art gallery,” she said. “We encourage people to come out and enjoy it.”
Merlin will be participating as an artist, providing henna (temporary) tattoos for attendees. Merlin and her sister, Myria Wade together operate Gypsy Sisters Tattoo on Main Street in Madison.
The artist added that cottage food producers are welcomed and permitted to participate in the art walk which encapsulates; cookies, jams, dried herbs, and other shelf-stable, homemade food and can do so without a permit or the need to rent commercial kitchen space.
“We encourage vendors to come at least 30 minutes early to set up their table and I will be there (on-site) by 2 p.m.,” she added.
The organizer added that there will be 10 tables available, which were donated by the City of Madison and that they are free on a first come, first serve basis. Normally there is a $5 fee for set-up but that is being waived for this event.
For more information on the Main Street Art Walk, visit their Facebook page or contact Teena Merlin at 304-601-5789.
Reporter Phil Perry can be reached at email@example.com or at 304-307-2401.