Artists set to take over Ann Arbor's West Side as Westside Art Hop returns

This story is part of a series about arts and culture in Washtenaw County. It is made possible by the Ann Arbor Art Center, the Ann Arbor Summer Festival, Destination Ann Arbor, Larry and Lucie Nisson, and the University Musical Society.

The annual Westside Art Hop will take place June 15, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., and June 16, noon-5 p.m., in Ann Arbor's West Side neighborhood.
Sophie Grillet, an Art Hop founder and primary organizer, describes the event as "a cross between an art walk and an art fair."
Neighborhood residents will host artist booths in their garages, porches, driveways, and yards, while visitors are invited to browse and buy original artwork. Painters, potters, jewelers, glass workers, woodworkers, sculptors, and ceramic artists will be among those represented.
Grillet says the Art Hop is different every year, and visitors will "see artists who they haven't seen before and whose work they haven't seen before, as well as artists whose work they enjoy seeing, … progress each year."
At this year’s event, more than 70 artists will display their work at about 30 different venues.
Visitors can download of a map of participating venues and trace a route accordingly, "or they can just go wherever they feel like it," Grillet says.
Grillet estimates that most visitors should be able to walk through the entire Art Hop within a single day, but she also encourages visitors to rent a bicycle pedicab from Boober Tours, which has partnered with the event.
"You can rent one and go around in style, being taken from place to place," she says. "So you can just say, 'Oh, I'm tired. I just want to be taken from this [venue] to that one, this one time.'"
Food trucks will be available, but with downtown Ann Arbor a short distance away, visitors will also have easy access to a variety of restaurants.
"People can spend the morning, have some lunch, do some more, and then go out for the evening. It makes a really nice day out," Grillet says.
She adds, "It's just fun seeing people walking around and chatting and carrying bits of art under their arm and having a good time."

Natalia Holtzman is a freelance writer based in Ann Arbor. Her work has appeared in publications such as the Minneapolis Star Tribune, the Los Angeles Review of Books, Literary Hub, The Millions, and others.
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