New festival in Plain City: Chalk it up to creativity

Jasmine Pilkinton, an art student at the University of Saint Francis in Fort Wayne, Ind., will bring her talent for creating cartoon characters to Plain City’s Chalk Art Festival.

(Posted Sept. 5, 2019)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

There are art festivals, and then there are chalk art festivals.

“One of the things that is truly unique about a chalk art festival is that you get to see people making art,” said Hilary Frambes. “You get to see the process and talk to and interact with the artists.”

Frambes, an award-winning artist and community art educator, is bringing that unique experience to Plain City with the first-ever Plain City Chalk Art Festival.

The event, which comes complete with live music and food trucks, is set for 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Sept. 14 at Bicentennial Park in the heart of the village near the historic clock tower. Admission is free.

A Plain City resident, Frambes travels around Ohio and out-of-state to create chalk art at festivals. Along the way, she has made many friends in the chalk art community.

“I thought it would be fun to bring a chalk art festival here because there isn’t one in this area,” she said. “I was shooting for eight or 10 artists. I was thrilled to end up with 13.”

Hilary Frambes, a local artist, has organized the first-ever Plain City Chalk Art Festival. On Sept. 14, she and 13 other chalk artists will cover the streets with temporary masterpieces.

Frambes will be creating artwork that day, too, bringing the tally to 14. Most of the artists are from Ohio, but a few are from Michigan and Indiana.

“Some of them are like me where art is their main gig, and then we have some who have 9-to-5 jobs during the week and do this on the weekends,” Frambes said.

All of artists will get started on their masterpieces at 10 a.m. Each will work on a patch of asphalt that measures roughly 10×10-feet. Most come with an image in mind; some freestyle. Frambes said visitors can expect to see anything from portraits of famous people to fantastical creatures. It could be anything, Frambes said.

“You will see these drawings come alive throughout the day,” she said.

Visitors will have a chance to do a little chalk art themselves in the children’s chalk area. Despite the name, adults are welcome, too, Frambes said. Chalk will be provided.

Complementing the art is a line-up of live music, starting with solo acoustic act Byrd Manring, a Plain City resident, who will play a variety of tunes from 10 a.m. to noon. A Bassic Approach II, a duo from the Columbus area, will play everything from The Beatles to Soundgarden from noon to 2 p.m. The Haz Benz, a four-piece band that includes drummer Jeff Frambes of Plain City, will take the stage from 2 to 6 p.m., playing classic rock from the 1960s’ to the ‘90s.

Three food trucks will be on site throughout the day: The Smiling Daisy Bus offering breakfast and lunch options, Coffee Connections of Plain City offering beverages, and Fuller Flavor Curbside Grill offering hamburgers, hotdogs and more.

The Uptown Plain City Organization is the event’s main sponsor. Several businesses also are lending support.

For more information, look for “PC Chalk Art Fest” on Facebook.

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