Utah Arts Festival to be Held Downtown

Utah Arts Festival to be Held Downtown

Save Story
Leer en español

Estimated read time: 2-3 minutes

This archived news story is available only for your personal, non-commercial use. Information in the story may be outdated or superseded by additional information. Reading or replaying the story in its archived form does not constitute a republication of the story.

Carole Mikita reporting Location, location, location -- it's important to the success of many businesses and events, including the Utah Arts Festival.

It has a new home, back in downtown Salt Lake City.

This makes the fifth move for the festival, which now stretches from the City and County Building across Second East and onto Library Square. It’s a location organizers say they have been waiting for.

Soaring high above the plaza, 'Strange Fruit’, a group of Australians who 'wow' crowds the world over with their balancing act on 14-foot poles. That's just some of what's new at the 'new' location for the Utah Arts Festival.

Robyn Nelson/ UAF Exec. Dir: "We've been actually aiming for this spot for five years, with all the changes going on in downtown Salt Lake and boy, are we glad we're here; and we're never gonna leave."

Those who organized the first Salt Lake Festival of the Arts in 1977 envisioned an urban setting where performing and visual artists could showcase. The city closed a portion of Main St.

Two years later, it moved to West Temple and the plaza outside Abravanel Hall... that's where it grew in popularity and size.

Then in 1984, it moved to the newly opened Triad Center - the catch phrase was 'bigger and better'.

The next year brought a disappointment in Sky Art, a huge, helium balloon, which deflated.

In 1986, fences went up and organizers added an admissions fee.

In 1992, high winds almost toppled the scaffolding and damaged artist booths.

Twenty years after its beginning, the festival was still going strong, attracting artists from around the country.

Then TRAX went in. So, in 2000, the festival set up at what turned out to be its least successful location, the Fairpark. Many visitors complained about the searches and numbers were down.

So, now to Library Square, everyone involved is looking for a festival rejuvenation.

Robyn Nelson: "We're still here; you can still come and celebrate and do it affordably with your family."

The 2003 Utah Arts Festival opens Thursday at noon and runs through Sunday. Admission is free for children 12 and under, $3.50 for seniors and for adults from noon to 3. After that, it's 7 dollars.

Most recent Utah stories

Related topics



Get informative articles and interesting stories delivered to your inbox weekly. Subscribe to the KSL.com Trending 5.
By subscribing, you acknowledge and agree to KSL.com's Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

KSL Weather Forecast