Most long-time Ocean City visitors and residents are familiar with “Arts Alive,” the weekend-long fine arts show in Northside Park each summer where artists showcase their work and families walk around enjoying food, drinks and live music. This year you may have noticed a gap in the Ocean City events calendar that Arts Alive used to fill every June, but that’s only because the annual art stroll is being replaced with a larger-scale arts festival this August: ArtX.
ArtX will take place on August 25 and 26, from 12 – 8 p.m. that Saturday and 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Sunday. Like Arts Alive, ArtX will be held at Northside Park on 125th Street bayside, and admission is still totally free.
While Arts Alive was a juried art show that focused on the artists selling their works, mostly visual art, in addition to food, live bands and kids’ activities, ArtX will branch out to incorporate other forms of artistic expression like performance art and film. ArtX, like Arts Alive, is a partnership between the Town and the Art League of Ocean City. According to the Art League’s Executive Director Rina Thaler, the festival will include activities for audiences of all ages to take part in.
“Not only have we expanded the types of art that are being offered, but we’ve added a lot more interactive experiences like workshops, film and things where people can participate in creating and collecting art,” Thaler said.
Said Ocean City’s Special Events Director Frank Miller, ArtX will feature “a wide swath of talent,” including films by local filmmakers presented by the Ocean City Film Festival, local musicians performing on the outdoor stage throughout the weekend and, of course, artisan tables lining the walkways of Northside Park.
Interactive kids’ activities will be scattered throughout the park, and the Art League will host several mixed-media workshops that families can take part in, including making a windchime, painting a beach scene and printing a fish pattern on t-shirts or paper.
Food trucks will provide food on-site available for purchase, and a Shore Craft Beer Garden will feature samples and pints of local craft beer available for purchase.
“We’re excited for the future [of the festival],” Thaler said. “It’s going to grow over the years, and it’s going to be great for OC and for getting the community involved.”
Though it’s only entering its first year, ArtX will have something for everyone and is an “Xpressive and Xciting” event that you won’t want to miss.
Cover image is from Arts Alive 2017.