Fire eaters, Brazilian martial arts, art galleries, and Mennonite preachers gathered in downtown Olympia for Arts Walk October 7 and 8.
Arts Walk is a free biannual event held in downtown Olympia that focuses on the celebration of the arts.
People of all ages came to enjoy Arts Walk this year despite the drizzle. Many families were present, and a children’s play area was even set up under the performers’ tent at the Washington Street market.
However, not all of the entertainment was geared toward children. One of the most popular events every year is the live music outside of Capital City Guitars.
It is primarily rock music but encompasses jazz and blues as well, according to musician and employee Tim Diedrich. Music is hosted outside of the establishment every day that Arts Walk is occurring, but bands rotate to allow one another equal access to this popular venue.
Diedrich believes that the culture of Olympia is what makes Arts Walk so unique. “There’s a vibe about Olympia as a city,” he said, “it’s a little bit of an island unto itself. I think that’s definitely present there at Arts Walk in the culture.”
The event includes a market, hands-on family activities, demonstrations and more. Many local business host musicians to play at their establishments during this time. There are also many people selling goods or performing on the streets.
A large variety of local artists came to this event to showcase their skills, including Phoebe, a vendor who did not give her last name. She feels as though Arts Walk provides the opportunity for her to share her artwork with the community and to do what she loves.
Arts Walk occurs on the fourth Friday of April and the first Friday of October every year, and continues through Saturday evening. The spring event features the Procession of the Species, held by Earthbound Productions.
Arts Walk is an integral part of Olympia, but it reflects the individuality of the town more than it adds to it. Together with fire eaters and folk singers, we remain a community.