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City of harrisburg logo


Contact: Matt Maisel
Director of Communications
[email protected]

May 15, 2023

Harrisburg, PA – Harrisburg’s unofficial start to summer is right around the corner, as Artsfest is scheduled to return to Riverfront Park from May 27 to 29.

This year’s three-day festival will feature 150 different artists, craftsmen, and artisan groups from across the country, selling handcrafted works in various categories, including ceramics, digital, drawing, fiber, glass, jewelry, leather, metal, mixed media, other, sculpture, painting, photography, printmaking and wood. The HBG Flea, featuring local artisans, will also return with nearly 50 local vendors underneath a large tent along the festival route.

“Come ready to shop because these artists have created truly one-of-a-kind items that will make the perfect addition to your home décor, wardrobe, and daily functions such as a coffee mug, soap, or broom” said City of Harrisburg Special Events Manager Cortney Ranck-Cameron. “This is a great opportunity to support small businesses.”

There will be no shortage of entertainment, with over 35 musical acts performing throughout the weekend. The UPMC Stage will feature 17 local bands, dance groups and more. JazzFest also returns with 15 talented groups taking the stage, and the Wednesday Club will hold a concert series featuring pianists, vocalists and more at the Art Association of Harrisburg in celebration of its 141th Anniversary. The Art Association of Harrisburg will be open to view from 10am-4pm on May 27, 12-5pm on May 28 and 10am-5pm on May 29.

The Renewal by Andersen Kidsfest area will feature several free activities throughout the festival including face painting, balloon animals, build your own bird house, coloring stations, and DIY sidewalk chalk creations. There will also be free canvas panting classes, cookie and cupcake decorating lessons, musical instrument discovery zone, character visits, and caricatures. The popular circus activity station with a mini tightwire, plate spinning, close up magic, and demonstrations on a large tightwire also returns this year.

New this year is a community mosaic project where event attendees will be able to create their own clay tile under the direction of artist Jessica Gorlin Liddell of Bella Mosaic Art. Jessica will use all the tiles made during the event to create a large mosaic that will be permanently installed at the new Chutes & Ladders Playground in Reservoir Park. The final design of the mosaic will feature the name of the playground and several nature and play themed images in bright colors. It is free to participate in this activity.

If you’re coming for the food, you better come hungry. There will be 25 food trucks serving up a variety of unique bites and festival favorites. Stuffed waffle pockets, dumplings, cheesesteaks, crab cakes, rice balls and Farm Show Milkshakes to name a few. There will also be a beer and wine garden located beside the entertainment stage. Participating local restaurants will join the festivities by offering colorful cocktail and dessert specials from May 22-29.

A complete event schedule, list of artisans, foodie guide and more is available at https://harrisburgpa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/Event-Program-Artsfest-2023-DIGITAL.pdf. There are even more art-centric organizations and activities beyond the festival path that visitors are encouraged to check out while in the City. Open Stage will present POIROT INVESTIGATES! starting on May 27 and Midtown Cinema will show THE GOONIES at 7pm on May 28 as part of their outdoor film series as well as some independent films, such as MONICA and MASTER GARDENER. The Civic Club of Harrisburg will host local artisans on May 27 from 12-6pm, a Paint & Sip class on May 27 at 6pm, and a Multicultural Marketplace on May 28 from 3-7pm.

“We look forward to having thousands of attendees join us for the day or entire weekend for this celebration of the arts” said Cameron. “Harrisburg has such a vibrant arts scene including art galleries, live theatre, murals, a plethora of talented artisans and musicians, and more. We encourage you to come experience everything that the City has to offer.”

Artsfest is sponsored by Visit Hershey & Harrisburg, ExploreHBG, UPMC, Green Mountain Energy, Leaf Filter, Sundance Vacations, Renewal by Anderson, Capital Blue Cross, Xfinity, PA Lottery, and Park Harrisburg.

For more information, contact Matt Maisel Director of Communications, at [email protected] or 717-255-7295.