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What brings you here?


Fri, Jun 21st, 2013
Posted in Lanesboro Arts & Culture

By Sara Pecinovsky

Art in the Park: Many of us have heard of it, especially in the local tri-state region. This was my third year attending the event and it was no surprise to me to see the large crowd of people once again making their rounds visiting each of the artists’ tents with their labors of goods. For the past 33 years, people have flocked to Lanesboro, Minn.; some to view, others to purchase creative works from artists near and far and dine on local foods. Typical summary of what this festival is all about, right? For most, visiting Lanesboro was to celebrate Father’s Day or be outside in the wonderful weather. However, let’s not forget the artists and this particular day in June. What brings a large group of artists to a small tourist town, tucked away in the countryside of southeast Minnesota and continues to bring them back year after year?

The thing I love the most about Art in the Park is how unique it is compared to other art events. The people are friendlier, more welcoming and are willing to slow down from the rush of life and have a little chat to get to know one another. I spoke with several artists today and they each had their own personal comments to share. I decided to gather a compilation of several comments and see what most artists’ insights were about “Art in the Park.” From the numerous comments I collected, there were many that caught my attention. One in particular that was commonly stated was, “The location is great and the event is well organized.” Artists love that the set-up is in a circular formation; where the customers and event goers can stop by each artist’s tent and not miss anyone. Each artist had something special to offer, whether it being the personal stories about their art or just letting their art speak for itself. All of them seemed to enjoy having this day to let people view their work. The location is the best part about the event. The park is beautiful! One artist shared that, to her, “It almost seems that the park was made just for this event. I can’t imagine a nicer place than this.”

So, we know the location is an ideal backdrop for any artist. In relation to location, another artist’s comment was, “It is very relaxed and a great event to show off artwork, even for the first time goers.” Yes, there were a great number of first timers this afternoon, but each were enthusiastic to be there and are looking forward to coming back next summer. They were so pleased how well it was advertised and how welcoming the frequent artists were to them. Amazingly, no matter if I talked to a first time artist or an old timer, everyone loved the relaxed atmosphere. It may seem chaotic because of the number of people that come to Art in the Park, but it does have a calm feel with everyone moving a little slower and taking the time to enjoy the day. An artist from the Twin Cities had a great first impression of the festival. She said, “People in the cities are in such a rush at art events, but a place like this surrounded by countryside; people actually stop to smell the flowers and enjoy the world around them.”

Out of all the comments I jotted down, there was not one single negative comment about Lanesboro, Sylvan Park or Art in the Park itself. Everyone I talked to or had the opportunity to watch was truly enjoying the festival! Many artists said this art event is by far their favorite out of any art shows they have attended. That says something about the small towns of Minnesota. They may be small and not have a large population, but they can offer so much more. Like Lanesboro; it is a tourist town that draws a huge crowd who wants to get away from the hustle and bustle of life to enjoy the atmosphere of what a small town has to offer. Art in the Park is a great example to do just that.

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