The 2016 Greenwich Village Art Fair (GVAF) takes place Saturday, Sept. 17 and Sunday, Sept. 18—rain or shine—on the grounds of Rockford Art Museum at Riverfront Museum Park, 711 N. Main St., in downtown Rockford, Illinois. The annual two-day outdoor event features 136 artists, live music, a gourmet marketplace, children's art activities, and more. Established in 1948, Greenwich is the longest running art fair of its kind in the Midwest. Alpine Bank is the presenting sponsor for the 23rd consecutive year; premier sponsors are Dean Alan Olson Foundation, Greenfire, and The Rock River Times.
Gates are open 10 a.m.–6 p.m. Saturday and 10 a.m.–5 p.m. Sunday. Admission at the gate is $5 for adults, free for children 12 and younger. Advance tickets are $3 and are available at any Alpine Bank location and at the Rockford Art Museum Store. Ticket proceeds support RAM programs throughout the year.
Exhibiting at this year’s fair are 136 artists from across the nation. Types of artwork represented include paintings, jewelry, sculpture, glass, ceramics, textiles, photography, wood, mixed media, and more. Artists compete for awards on the first day of the fair, where their work will be viewed by 2016 Judge Nathan Keay, is a photographer and multimedia artist based in Chicago whose clients have included Timeout Chicago, General Motors, Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago, Northwestern University, and many more. Awards, including Best of Show and six Judge’s Choice awards, will be presented Sunday, Sept. 18.
For the third year in row, the Rockford Mass Transit District Trolley bus will transport fairgoers from parking lots off site – at no charge. A trolley route map will be released closer to the event. Special events at the fair include Greenwich After Hours (Sat, 6–8 pm) at Point Bar, Bistro Breakfast both days, and the annual Art Raffle, announced Sunday, with raffle prizes of original artwork donated by five exhibiting artists.
Greenwich Main Stage sponsored by Mary’s Place features live music all day, both days, by local musicians. All shows included with fair admission. The 2016 roster includes Taboo Blah Blah, Derek Luttrell, Andrew Robinson, Lukewarm Club of America, Mary J. Harris Trio, Dave Sadtler, Patte Lund Trio, The Lone Canary, plus a special performance by Rockford Dance Company.
Gourmet Marketplace offers handmade favorites including from local and regional vendors, including CACAOCUVEE fine chocolates, Dip n’ Good Dips, Annette’s Italian Cookies, Candle Crest Soy Candles, Soap of the Earth, Cellar Door Designs, The Beaded Zoo, and more.
Located near the Greenwich Main Stage, Village Pub serves grilled fare favorites, sodas, teas, Budweiser brands and more. Food and drink vendors throughout the fair include Pig Minds Brewing Company, Woodfire Brick Oven Pizza, JavaMania Coffee Roastery, Hey Brothers Ice Cream & Waffle Cones, and We-B-Popp’n Kettle Korn.
Kortman Gallery Point Bar features signature cocktails, mixed drinks, fine wines, and hosts several Greenwich activities. Point Bar hosts GREENWICH AFTER HOURS on Saturday night (6–8 pm, FREE admission and open to the public, DJ/cash bar). Point Bar also features the Better Business Bureau of Rockford EMERGING ARTIST BOOTH, with its own Local Emerging Artist Award sponsored by Kortman Gallery and J.R. Kortman Center for Design, featuring their selected local artists. BISTRO BREAKFASTS—featuring made-to-order crepes (Saturday) and omelets (Sunday)—are served both days from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.; $7 includes complimentary coffee or cocktail. LIVE MUSIC at Point Bar both days, with Mark Sturm and Austin Karr on Saturday, and Stan Riley on Sunday. RAM MEMBERSHIP BOOTH is also located near Point Bar, where visitors can easily join the art museum or renew their membership for the upcoming year.
Creations by Kids is an area where children can make their own take-home art based on this year’s theme, “Superheroes.” Hands-on art activities are $1 each, or $5 for all 6. The Creations tent opens both days at 10 a.m. and closes one hour before the fair.
Also on sale now are tickets for the 2016 Art Raffle, $5 each or three for $10. Raffle tickets are available at Rockford Art Museum Store and will be available on site during the event. Drawing will be held Sunday, Sept. 18; ticketholders need not be present to win.
Admission to the fair also includes FREE admission to Rockford Art Museum; feature exhibition is the 2016 Rockford Midwestern Biennial, on view through Sept. 25.
Presenting Sponsor: Alpine Bank; Premier Sponsors: Dean Alan Olson Foundation, Greenfire, The Rock River Times. Supporting Sponsors: Blick Art Materials, Northern Public Radio WNIJ/WNIU, OSF Saint Anthony Medical Center, Rasmussen College, Rockford Mass Transit District, Rockford Mutual Insurance Company, Joan Stonecipher, SwedishAmerican Foundation; Contributing Sponsors: Better Business Bureau of Rockford, Keep Northern Illinois Beautiful, Larson & Darby Group, Peak Fitness Inc., and Perryville Pet Hospital. Award Sponsors include Lon and Dick Behr, Rockford Association for Minority Management, WilliamsMcCarthy LLP, Wipfli LLP, Women's Art Board of Rockford Art Museum, River District Association, Kortman Gallery and J.R. Kortman Center for Design.