Festival Banner (the Arts Festival blog)

As I sit here in my office, looking out the window at piles of snow, the “Arts Festival weather” of July seems very far away. While today features a rare bit of February sunshine, with temperatures well above freezing, just a few days ago, we “enjoyed” a Polar Vortex. I don’t remember a colder time in State College. Penn State students wrapped up in parkas and boots for their walk to class. Some even walked backwards so that the wind didn’t sting their faces!

But before we know it, February will be a distant memory. The Festival will be here and South Allen Street will be filled with the sights and sounds of the Children and Youth Sidewalk Sale. It’s one of my favorite events of the Festival. Some of the kids are future artists—with creativity to spare. Others are future businessmen and women, with their eyes firmly on their bottom line.

The rules of the Children and Youth Sidewalk sale are simple. The kids sell art and crafts that they’ve made. That’s it in a nutshell.

They’re not allowed to sell things made from kits, food, or plants. Young artists may not sell toy weapons or items with a trademarked logo (e.g. the Nittany Lion, or Steelers logo). That leaves lots of stuff young artists can sell.

I’m not much of a shopper, but I really enjoy shopping at the Children and Youth Sidewalk Sale. I’ve bought a watercolor, greeting cards, friendship bracelets, and even decision rocks. The rocks, however, may be faulty—my decision making hasn’t really improved since purchasing them. I even bought a pair of Adirondack chairs from a young artist.

The cards are better than anything I could get at Hallmark, and the Adirondack chairs are made out of real wood—not this plastic business that you see at every outdoor furniture store. And call me old fashioned, but I’d much rather buy a friendship bracelet from a young artist rather than from an aging hippie selling stuff at a Grateful Dead show.

The Children and Youth Sidewalk Sale is open to kids from age 8 to 18 who live in or have relatives in Centre County or any of the counties that are contiguous to Centre County. Young artists must attend to their booths themselves, just like the adult artists in our Sidewalk Sale & Exhibition.

The application fee is $24. Young businesspeople will understand that this is a fixed cost. Amortized over the hours of making and selling their products, well, it’s not very much a all.

The deadline to apply is Friday, June 21, so there’s still time for the creative juices to flow.  Click here to find the application.

If you have any questions about the rules or completing the application, give us a call or drop us a note. We’ll be glad to help you through the process.

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