Arts Fest brings day of art appreciation and live music to Glen Rock


Photo Credit: Cadia Warner

Arts Fest took place on the lawn outside of Borough Hall, with many tents scattered throughout the lawn.

by Yethmie Goonatilleke, Editor-in-Chief

Gathered on the lawn outside of Borough Hall, local artists, art appreciators, and Glen Rock citizens alike came together to take part in Arts Fest— an annual fair celebrating the arts and the role it plays in our lives. With lively music and a handful of vendors selling hand-crafted goods, Arts Fest culminated in a great success, bringing together members of our community.

Arts Fest is a relatively new event, originating last year on behalf of the Arts Council of Glen Rock—a non-profit organization dedicated to advancing the arts in our town. As Arts Fest requires a lot of time and dedication, The Arts Council spends a considerable amount of time planning the fair, starting around February. Patti McHugh and Michelle Keller, co-chairs of the Arts Fest, collaborated with a committee of about fifteen people to form this artistic gathering. 

“[Keller] wanted a showcase for artists because that is what the Art Council is about — supporting artists and art, whether the art be painting or some kind of special craftsmanship,” McHugh stated. 

Unlike the annual Glen Rock Town Fair, Arts Fest is a bit more selective in its participants. It is considered a juried show, where artists have to submit their artwork for consideration before selection. There were 22 artists/vendors participating this year, each selling a distinctive craft or project. Although the art forms varied greatly—from jewelry to paintings to ceramics—all the artists had a similar bursting passion towards their craft. 

Charlie Saulenas, creator of Everwood Turnings, stands in front of his many wooden bowls, created from chopped-down trees. (Photo Credit: Yethmie Goonatilleke)

One artist, Charlie Saulenas, takes chopped-down trees and transforms them into polished wooden bowls for his business, Everwood Turnings. Most of the trees he uses are sourced from local recycling centers in the northern New Jersey area. Saulenas devotes upwards of 3 hours to complete each bowl. 

Gabbi Krachenfels, a senior at Glen Rock High School, uses the Arts Fest as an opportunity to sell her hand-made jewelry and keychains. 

“Jewelry making has always been a passion of mine, and it’s such a delight to share it with the community,” Krachenfels commented.  

A lively day for all ages, Arts Fest was a phenomenal success that fostered art appreciation and local artist support in Glen Rock. Now an annual event, make sure to visit Arts Fest next year, and support local artists!