April showers bring May flowers, or so the saying goes. However, if you’re interested in giving Mom something other than flowers this year for Mother’s Day, check out Art Walk on May 4th from 5-9 pm in downtown Jacksonville. Each month, thousands of art enthusiasts flood downtown in search of local, eclectic, and handmade art by local talent. However, the thrill of Art Walk doesn’t end there. In the effort to make Art Walk even more memorable, many local venues are thinking up ways to ramp up traffic and interest in this Jacksonville tradition.
Hemming Plaza is always abuzz, rain or shine, the first Wednesday of the month for Art Walk. This month, experience Love ur Mother 2011, which celebrates the theme of conservation. Talented artisans have items to browse and purchase, local talent is on display, and food is available. For those new to the Art Walk experience, this is a great first stop to check it all out.
More than 40 other venues in downtown’s core participate in this free event as well. Since the Jacksonville Jazz Fest is only a few weeks away, local establishments, including KOJA Sushi and Zodiac Grille, are getting in the swing of things and offering live jazz throughout the event. Meet Jacksonville Jazz Festival poster artist Pamela Miller at the beautiful Snyder Memorial and purchase a signed poster for yourself or for Mom’s big day.
Burro Bags, a local favorite, has teamed up with the owner of the Lomax Lodge in Five Points and Shantytown Pub in Springfield to create the Burro Bar in the old London Bridge location at 100 E. Adams St. Their grand opening kicks off during Art Walk and lasts into the night, with several bands on display and new decor to explore.
Perdue, a popular Art Walk stop on the corner of Forsyth and Main, is offering several ways for you to enjoy the evening with Mom. Shop from over a dozen hand picked vendors specializing in Mother’s Day gifts, enter to win gifts for Mom, make a “floral bouquet”, and check out the music of Paul Vranesh. In addition, meet photographer Jane Shirek and check out her celebrated work up close.
All of these events are easier to get to than you might think. Score a parking space downtown at a meter, free after 6 PM. The Downtown Garage at Adams and Clay offers free parking during Art Walk, and the Skyway is free to ride until 10 PM. However you get to Art Walk, it’s well worth the trip.