Arts on Fire

Though the heart of the annual Cherry Creek Arts Festival, now in its 24th year, is the art (this year there are 250 artists in thirteen media categories), there’s always something new to look forward to. The 2014 edition kicks off this morning with just such a novelty: Mayor Michael Hancock will preside over a pre-show July 4 bike parade, which starts out at 9 a.m. at the CCAF Bike Corral at Second Avenue and Steele Street before making its way to the Beer Garden Stage on St. Paul Street.

“People are invited to come in festive attire and decorate their bikes, and there’ll be an award for Most Patriotic Festival Patron,” says spokeswoman Stephanie Blake. “We’re hosting it in support of using alternative modes of transportation to get to the festival.” From there, it’s on to three days of nonstop art, food and performances in the heart of Cherry Creek North, with the Denver-centric theme of “Art Lives Here.” Indeed it does.

Other highlights include the Arrow Five Years Out Art Challenge, featuring innovative mixed-media beaded work by the winner, Illinois artist Betsy Youngquist, and other finalists; ongoing culinary demos in Fillmore Plaza, between First and Second avenues; hands-on art activities on Artivity Avenue on Milwaukee Street; and a Saturday-night Festival Nights concert with FACE and Chase N the Dream.

Cruise the Cherry Creek Arts Festival from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. today and tomorrow and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, between First and Third avenues and Columbine and Steele streets. Admission is free, and food and drink will be available to purchase, at the fest as well as local eateries. For more information, including maps and transportation alternatives, go to
July 4-6, 2014

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Susan Froyd started writing for Westword as the "Thrills" editor in 1992 and never quite left the fold. These days she still freelances for the paper in addition to walking her dogs, enjoying cheap ethnic food and reading voraciously. Sometimes she writes poetry.
Contact: Susan Froyd