A2 Artoberfest returns, bringing a more intimate art fair to Ann Arbor

The Ann Arbor-based Guild of Artists and Artisans will host the second A2 Artoberfest Oct. 8-9 in downtown Ann Arbor.

The event will feature 100 jury-selected artists, live entertainment, food vendors, art activities, and beverages from local brewing companies along North Fourth Avenue and East Ann Street.

Allison Buck, marketing and partnerships director at the guild, says this year's Artoberfest will feature both new and returning artists, as well as new partnerships and collaborations with a number of Ann Arbor businesses.

“We have a little bit of everything,” said Buck. “We have artists working in all sorts of mediums; activities from the [Ann Arbor] Hands-On Museum, TeaHaus, and People’s Food Co-Op; and we’re having live music again. [There will be] lots of local partnerships and things we’re building upon from last year.”

Buck says the idea for Artoberfest came from a desire for a smaller, more intimate art event. 

“The Ann Arbor Art Fair can be a little overwhelming,” she says. “This event allows you to feel like you can really take it all in, chat with artists, and enjoy the entirety of the event.”

The guild also hosts several other art fairs throughout the year, including the annual Ann Arbor Summer Art Fair, which hosts roughly 400,000 guests each year. But Buck wants to keep Artoberfest smaller to make it as accessible as possible. 

"We might add a Friday evening if folks were interested in that, grow more partnerships, [or add] more live music," she says. "… But the footprint wouldn’t grow more than a block.”

A2 Artoberfest will run from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Oct. 8 and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m on Oct. 9. More information on A2 Artoberfest, including participating artists, entertainers, and vendors, is available here

Rylee Barnsdale is a Michigan native and longtime Washtenaw County resident. She wants to use her journalistic experience from her time at Eastern Michigan University writing for the Eastern Echo to tell the stories of Washtenaw County residents that need to be heard.

Photo courtesy of the Guild of Artists and Artisans.