YSU Summer Festival of the Arts anchor busy downtown weekend

This weekend the city is celebrating the arts; from visual to performing arts, there's something for everyone

YSU Summer Festival of the Arts.


YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The 19th annual Summer Festival of the Arts kicks off Friday as the central event for a weekend full of fun activities in downtown Youngstown.

The festival runs through Sunday at and around Youngstown State University.

This year’s event will feature 80 artists from all over the country, including musical performances, dances, hand-crafted artwork, various food vendors and activities for kids.

Organizer Lori Factor said the event is a weekend where the whole family can experience fun and culture.

“Come with an open mind to see new artwork and be prepared to get here and not want to leave because there are so many things,” Factor said. “Park one place, go to Greekfest, come to Summerfest, go do a concert, do it in reverse. Come early and stay late.”

Michael McGiffin, director of downtown events, says big event weekends like this have an economic impact plus a community impact.

“The bar owners or restaurant general managers, they will all say events days have been their top five grossing days,” he said. “So as far as a dollar amount, can’t give it, but we know qualitatively it’s working.”

The Summer Festival of the Arts — now in its 19th year — runs Saturday, July 8 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Sunday, July 9 from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission is free.

“We have 80 artists — this is their livelihood,” Factor said. “And they’re so talented, we want to see them come back. So we hope the community really comes out and supports this.”

Other downtown events this weekend include:

St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church Summerfest

  • 220 N. Walnut Street
  • Admission: free
  • Thursday: 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Friday & Saturday: 11 a.m. – 10 p.m.; Sunday: noon – 6 p.m.
  • Take-out lunch service is available Thursday & Friday from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

All AmeriCon 2017 Comic Convention

Fabulous Flashbacks concert

  • Central Square in Downtown Youngstown
  • Admission: $10 — tickets available at the Covelli Centre box office, Covelli Centre website or at the gate
  • Friday: 7:30 p.m.

Youngstown Wine and Jazz, featuring Alex Bugnon

  • Central Square in Downtown Youngstown
  • Admission: $10 — tickets available at the Covelli Centre box office, Covelli Centre website or at the gate
  • Saturday: 7:30 p.m.

2DE Gospel Fest, featuring Israel Houghton and New Breed

  • Central Square in Downtown Youngstown
  • Admission: $20 — tickets available on 2Deep’s website or at the gate
  • Sunday: 3 p.m.

Due to construction, Wick Ave. is closed. Parking for the Festival of the Arts can be found in any of the surface lots on Fifth Ave., across from Stambaugh Stadium (GPS address: 333 Grant St., Youngstown, OH 44502) or the Wick Ave. parking deck, accessible from the back entrance (GPS address: 100 Wade St.., Youngstown, OH 44502.)

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