Art on the Alley returns October 7 to First Drive and Ashwood Lane NW in Downtown New Philadelphia. (Submitted photo)
New Philadelphia, Ohio - An event this weekend in downtown New Philadelphia will showcase the musical, performing and visual art talent that abounds in Tuscarawas County.
The second Art on the Alley event will take place this Sunday, October 7, from noon to 5 p.m. along First Drive and Ashwood Lane NW in downtown New Philadelphia.
Rick Arredondo is the co-founder of The Ezekiel Project and one of the organizers of Art on the Alley. He says the free community event was held for the first time this spring as a way to showcase the area’s homegrown talent while bringing together artists, vendors, area businesses and members of the community.
“It was really to embrace all that T-County has to offer as far as music, art and food,” he says.
Arredondo says the first Art on the Alley drew between 1,000 and 1,200 visitors and was so well received that the committee decided to host a second event in the fall.
“We just had a really good crowd, and people were asking when we were going to do it again. I said we’ll do one in the fall, thinking that we’d get good participation because we already had one under our belt,” he says.
Arrendo says the second installment of Art on the Alley will feature a similar format, with family-friendly activities and games, live music, food trucks, and a makers market that includes at least 30 local vendors along with several area nonprofits.
“These are really artisans, and it also includes nonprofits because we invite them to come out and share and tell the community what they do and how they support the community,” Arredondo said of the makers market.
Fall-themed children’s activities will also be offered throughout the day and include pumpkin painting, train rides, and a kids costume contest.
“There will be a lot of kid-friendly activities,” Arredondo says. “It’s really about making sure the kids get into it.”
There will also be several new additions for the upcoming event.
For the first time, theatrical talent will be included in the Art on the Alley festivities. Taking the stage at 12:15 will be the Black Box Ensemble Theatre, a local theatre company that made its debut at the Tuscarawas County Center for the Arts last fall. Also scheduled to appear is illusionist TJ Marlatt, who will present a magic show beginning at 2:30.
“It brings another element of art that we didn’t have the first time,” Arredondo says.
The acts are in addition to the event’s musical lineup, which includes the Alicia Norman Band, Roxanne Timberlake, Cassidy Widder, and Adam Pearce.
“It will be a lot more individual acts,” Arredondo says. “It’s more of a folk kind of music scene, and it’s going to be a little bit more casual.”
Arredondo notes that the Art on the Alley events are organized by a committee that includes both artists and local business owners who work together to make each installment of the event even better and more inclusive.
“Inclusivity is important to us because we don’t define art. It defines itself,” he says.
STACEY CARMANY, TUSCO TV