Loyola PAC Presents Artists of the Wall
About Artists of the Wall
For 24 years, the Artists of the Wall festival has brightened the streets of Rogers Park on Father’s Day weekend, June 17th to 18th. The two day festival celebrates community and camaraderie through the painting of the 600 foot sea wall at Loyola Park Beach. There are 160 spots along the wall, and families gather together every year to make their artistic mark.
The Loyola Park Advisory Council (PAC) started the festival as a response to gangs and graffiti targeting the wall. They wanted to build a tradition around the wall to celebrate peace and unity in the community.
Painting the wall is not the only thing community members can enjoy. From noon to 5:30 pm each day, the PAC creates a space at Pratt and Lake where people can come and enjoy a picnic with their family and listen to great live music. The impressive line-up of local talent is curated by jazz vocalist and PAC member, Lucy Smith. Keep in touch on their Facebook page here for the entire 2017 music lineup!
When asked what their favorite aspect of the festival was, one community member said, "The joy! The painting! The coming together! The massive assembly of focused activity! It's a fabulous event - wouldn't miss it. And then we get to enjoy the wall for the rest of the year."
Advice to Fellow PACs
President of Loyola PAC Torin Heffernan and Treasurer Tammy Konieczko say that organization is tough during big events like this, but that systematizing the process is important for success. They encourage PACs to recruit a core group of members to take on the event. Within that group, each person should have a designated task. They also suggest that everything is well documented, since people are constantly shifting in and out.
Torin and Tammy also advise that involving local businesses is key. It helps to reach out early to people in the area and build strong relationships. They said local businesses become great partners and are usually willing to provide sponsorship and/or raffle prizes like gift cards.
What’s better than spending a whole weekend in your favorite Chicago parks? Volunteer to beautify your park on It’s Your Park Day on June 17th from 9 am to 2 pm, then head over to Loyola Park Beach to relax with your family!
Interested in volunteering at Artists of the Wall? Loyola PAC wants your help! They need volunteers for variety of tasks, both during and in the weeks leading up to the festival. Get in contact with the PAC at email@example.com for more information.