File 2013

When Saskia Harak moved to Riverside a little more than two years ago, she did so right before the Riverside Arts Weekend (RAW). She had such a positive experience meeting her new neighbors and seeing what the village had to offer on that occasion that she’s now the board president of RAW, which will be held May 21 and 22 in Guthrie Park.

“It was a fantastic opportunity to see the community I moved into, and it’s been a great way to meeting people,” said Harak, whose group of a dozen or so volunteers has brought together more than 70 artists from around the Midwest working in a variety of media.

The juried art show will run on Saturday, May 21 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and on Sunday, May 22 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Artwork includes painting, drawings, photography, jewelry, clothing and fiber art, sculpture, glass, ceramics, metal and woodwork, custom handbags and more.

The event is free and open to the public.

“We tried really to have a good cross-section of artists,” Harak said. “I think people will really enjoy the diversity and creativity of the artists coming in.”

Throughout RAW, the folks from the Riverside Arts Center will have a kids tent where the younger set can take part in art activities related to the festival’s “spectacle” theme of tandem bikes, a half dozen of which can be found scattered throughout the downtown area.

The bikes are being auctioned off online through 3 p.m. on May 22. An online auction site can be found at Winning bidders can pick up their tandems toward the end of RAW on May 22.

In addition to the art, visitors will be able to enjoy music from an eclectic lineup of acts. On May 21, the entertainment starts at 10 a.m. with a set from the Hauser Junior High Jazz Band. They’ll be followed at 11:30 a.m. by the acoustic duo The Redmonds and at 2 p.m. by Dirty Water, a brew of blues, funk, jazz and reggae and more.

On May 22, the music begins at 10 a.m. with the Kevin Lucas Orchestra (marimba, vibes and percussion), followed at 1 p.m. by the soul, rock and pop of Aryk Crowder.

A central stage will be located on Bloomingbank Road next to the train station and near the food/beverage tent, where 34 East Lounge will be selling beer and wine in addition to items from Empanadus, Chocolate Twist, Aunt Diana’s, Dinky Donuts, Fruit Blend Smoothies, Taco Factory and Dio de Los Tamales.

Arts Center hosts cider fest, new exhibit reception

After a day of enjoying art in Guthrie Park on Saturday, May 21, you may work up a thirst. And if that’s the case, you might want to head over to the Riverside Arts Center, 32 E. Quincy St. for RiverCider, a craft cider fest being held in partnership with Riverside Foods.

The event, which will feature more than a dozen libations from five cideries, will run from 5 to 8 p.m. Tickets are $25 and available by visiting the center’s website at Proceeds benefit the Riverside Arts Center.

And on Sunday, May 22, you can head back to the Arts Center between 3 and 6 p.m. for the opening reception of an exhibit in the center’s new Flex Gallery space. The exhibition, “Back and White and Blues All Over,” features the work of local cartoonist Charley Krebs.

The work on display will include the cartoons Krebs drew for the Chicago Jazz Magazine’s annual Bluesfest issue and other work by the artist.

The exhibit runs through June 18. Admission to the reception and exhibition are free.