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The insider's guide to navigating the Ann Arbor Art Fairs

This article is sponsored by Wallside Windows and Concordia University. 

It's the biggest art fair of the summer and it's actually four fairs all rolled into one fun event.  Of course, we're talking about the Ann Arbor Art Fairs, and it all kicks off on Thursday, July 18th. The fairs transform Ann Arbor into a sprawling art show with plenty of food trucks and strolling entertainment. With over half a million people flocking to it every year, it is the largest juried art fair in the country. Meredith Bruckner, the community news producer for All About Ann Arbor, and she is sharing her pro tips for navigating this big event. 

1) Check out the map. Last year they introduced a great wayfinding system. All of the streets with the booths on them are given letters letter abbreviations (Main Street is MN, State street is ST), and the blocks are given different numbers so you can find all the booths you want to go to based on their letter-number combination. The map is also color coated so you can see which fair is where.

2) Plan your parking. Now the streets for the fair are shut down, but parking should not be too much of an issue. You can park at either Briarwood Mall or Huron High School for free and use the shuttles to get into the fair. There are also city parking structures which will be a little more expensive, as well as the University Structures you can park in. The Art-Go -Round minibusses will be going around the outside of the fair so you can hop on to get around the fair faster. 

There are four fairs for this one big event.  Two artists brought some of their works to get an idea of what visitors will see this year. Suellen Parker is an artist with Case Island Glass and makes vibrant platters, bowls and more.  Ruth Crowe's works are a fusion of vintage photography and other images. 

Each of the four fairs offers something slightly different, so make sure to check them all out. There are so many different things you can find there from fine art to furniture and they are all at different price points. 

For more information on the Ann Arbor Art Fairs, visit allaboutannarbor.com.


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