WORCESTER, MA, September 11, 2017 -- stART on the Street returns to Park Ave on Sunday, September 17, 2017. The festival will fill Park Avenue from Highland Street to Pleasant Street with over 300 artists and crafters, 3 stages of live music, street performers, over 30 dining options including a food trucks and a vegan food court, local non-profits, art demonstrations, and activities for guests of all ages.
When asked about the event’s beginnings in 2002, stART Co-Founder Tina Zlody replied, “we had about 75 artists and maybe 300 shoppers at that first festival. It has been an amazing experience to watch this festival grow to an event that draws in upwards of 50,000 guests.”
“I was a day-of volunteer at the first stART, when it was on Main Street,” said Youth Demo Coordinator Casey Hickey. “I was given a few boxes of stickers, streamers and recycled materials for several dozen kids at the festival to make into art. We also had a few sheets of cardboard zip-tied to a chain link fence, which we dubbed the ‘Urban Mural.’ Being a part of stART’s growth over the last 15 years has been amazing. Thinking of those humble beginnings in the context of the thousands of kids we see every year at stART… I’m just so proud of us, and proud of Worcester.”
During preparations for the 15th anniversary, stART held a design contest for a commemorative t-shirt. Marketing & Logistics Coordinator Nikki Erskine said, “entries weren’t just from established artists, we had submissions from children and from college students too. It’s one thing for us to enjoy festival prep, but to see the community contribute too was really amazing.” The 15th anniversary t-shirts will be for sale at stART to help fundraising efforts, which help keep the festival free.
Community feedback helps guide the direction of festivals, and stART Director Samantha Sorrentino says there’s been a desire for more vegan-friendly dining, which lead stART to partner with VegWorcester. “We are excited to expand the vegan options available to attendees,” said Sorrentino. “After the success of the World Food Court last year on Elm Street, we decided to take the idea and run with it. Vendors, including The Vegan Nest & Belmont Vegetarian, will offer options from Vegan Soul food to BBQ Jackfruit and everything in between.”
In addition to numerous vegan options, stART’s food vendors will have options for all guests. Included in the lineup of 11 food trucks are two new Worcester-based business The Rice Truck and Homegrown & Co, as well as previous crowd-pleasers Say Cheese and Plouf Plouf Gastronomie. A second food court located near 252 Park Ave will include Flying Rhino, Marcia’s Jamaican Sauces, and Cake Shop Cafe. Restaurants on the street will be open as well, including Park Grill & Spirits, which is hosting a beer garden with live music outside, and the 1pm Patriots game inside.
stART on the Street is free to attend and has features for all ages, such as face painting, artist demonstrations, and street performers throughout the day. “We have friends returning from The Red Trouser Show and The Shire, as well as new comer Alakazam - The Human Knot,” said Director Gabriel Rollins. “Plus, we have filled 3 stages with musical acts throughout the day you will not want to miss.” Finalized stage lineups are being announced on stART on the Street’s Facebook page this week.
The 15th annual stART on the Street runs from 11am until 6pm. Area street parking is available and WooRides will offer pedicab tours of Elm Park. In addition to staying hydrated and wearing sunscreen and comfortable shoes, organizers ask attendees to be mindful of road closures near the festival, and of street signs and driveways while parking. The festival is always family-friendly and free, though donations to keep stART running are greatly appreciated and can be made to brightly colored piggy banks around the festival. Area street parking will be available, and there is an ATM on-site. To learn more, get involved, become a sponsor or volunteer, please visit us at stARTontheStreet.org.
stART thanks all the people and organizations who have helped us support the local economy by buying handmade – for fifteen years!
stART on the Street is made possible through our sponsors, including the Massachusetts Cultural Council and the Woo Card, which can be swiped at stART for member points.
About stART on the Street:
stART on the Street is a non-profit organization committed to expanding the scope of creative culture in Worcester and Central Massachusetts by creating events that celebrate and support the visual and performing arts. stART encourages everyone to support the local economy and buy handmade.