Art Crawl returns to Banbury Place

EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) – Artists and art lovers gather at Banbury Place this weekend for the return of the 12th annual Art Crawl.

They say being excited is an understatement.

“The energy is tremendous,” says Johna Stern. “Everyone here has worked so hard. There is a team of volunteers organizing this event and they have worked countless hours to prepare. We have amazing local artists here supporting us in addition to the tenants here in this building.

Johna Stern owns a furniture restoration studio, Studio 111, in Banbury. In her first artistic exploration since moving into the new space, she says she feels all the love.

“I think the way the community comes out and supports local artists and small businesses is amazing,” she said. “That’s the big part of life in Eau Claire.”

Even some of Banbury’s companies are getting into the art action like John Koenig of Undercity Games, whose daughter is showing off her own artistic talents.

“Everything is free-will, proceeds from donations go directly to my daughter, who produces these wonderful toilet paper tube painted animals,” he said. “They’re called Maddy’s Rolls.”

The old factory is full of paintings, ceramics, music and dance. Art Crawl board member Mindy Huntress said it was great to see this all fall into place.

“It took a lot of planning, but it’s so exciting to see everyone come today and there’s something happening around every corner,” she said.

While many already see Eau Claire as an artistic community, illustrator Mark Lone says Banbury is a community unto itself.

“I think art cultivates art,” he said. “You don’t want to like building a wall and keeping more rookie artists. You want to build a longer table and try to help people.

In addition to art exhibits, demonstrations, live music and plenty of food can be enjoyed throughout the crawl.

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