‘Give art a chance to bloom’

Reinbeck hosts 12th annual art festival

Robin Fisher, a pencil, charcoal, and acrylic artist, dealt with the soggy weather to set up her booth full of her artwork at the Reinbeck Art Faire. You can find more of her art on her website: www.artbyrobinfisher.com, on Instagram @robinsartnest, and on Facebook at Art by Robin Fisher. Photo by Vanessa Roudabush.
The first installment of the G-R High School Student Art Show featured playing card towers, traditional art, and marble mazes you could play with.Photo by Vanessa Roudabush.
Beautiful and vibrant quilts were displayed at the UCC Church, featuring generations of quilts from all over Iowa. Photo by Vanessa Roudabush.
While art may not be everyone’s forte, vintage cars were also on display on the main street of Reinbeck. Photo by Vanessa Roudabush.
Uncle Stinky worked hard at his coal forge to make lollipops for kids and adults alike. He teaches the art of blacksmithing. If interested, email him at unclestinkymansoap@gmail.com or call 319-961-0954. Photo by Vanessa Roudabush.

The rain didn’t stop the 12th annual Reinbeck Art Festival on Saturday, Sept. 17. Artists of all types from all over Iowa participated in the event to showcase their creative spirit.

Marion Boyer, the chairwoman of the festival, jump-started the event in Reinbeck because, as she put it, “I’ve enjoyed art all my life, and I knew that when I got done teaching, this was something I wanted for our community. I’m a lifelong member of Reinbeck, and we decided we wanted to have the festival. To give art a chance to bloom here [in Reinbeck], bring in our own members of the community together, and bring others to our town.”

Beyond the arts and fine crafts, there was a car show and live music featuring Colton Thomas, Phil and Travis, and Coral Thede. Even high school art instructor Kassie Nelson helped curate a new G-R Student Art Show for her students to showcase their artistic talents.

Sandi Rannfeldt, a volunteer at the G-R Student Art Show, shared her joy for the art festival.

“I really like that the whole community is involved. When I come down to volunteer, I’ll turn my head, and the next table has somebody I haven’t seen in a few months,” she said. “When you see the volunteers’ smiling faces, they’re loving it.”

The Reinbeck Art Festival also added new children’s activities this year, such as the Children’s Art Activities at the Reinbeck Public Library and Touch-A-Truck, featuring a firetruck, military humvee, ambulance, and other working trucks for kids to explore.

Volunteer Mary Lou Moser helped curate the quilt show’s second year at the UCC Church. She explained the history behind these quilts and their importance to the festival.

“This year, we have 60 [quilts], and most of them come with a story,” Moser said. “The quilt show is a fixture for future [art festivals]. Our oldest one [on display this year] was from the 1850s.”

Even local businesses had their doors wide open for guests to the small town of Reinbeck. Chelsea Henricks, the owner of Evy Rose Boutique in downtown Reinbeck, said this about the art festival.

“This is my first year participating in the art festival, but I’m loving it. It’s definitely brought a ton of people, and it’s a really good attraction,” she said.

The Reinbeck Art Festival has become a pillar in Grundy County’s culture for years and will continue to do so every third Saturday of September for years to come.

Marion Boyer is proud of the work the community has put into the art festival.

“It’s been a joy to make the festival happen,” she said. “Our community is very supportive of this event, and I’m thankful for their help every year.”