Welcome 2020!

Happy 2020, everyone! The Art in the Park crew hopes the year has treated you well thus far and continues to do so. 2020 sounds like a BIG deal so we want to make this year a BIG deal!

First off, we have officially created the Facebook event for Art in the Park 2020 to start marketing the message. If you are on Facebook, please share this event so we can let as many people as possible know about this unique art experience. August is an extremely busy month for people so the sooner the event is known, the sooner the summer planning can begin!

2020 will officially be the 6th year of Art in the Park, our Regional Fine Art Festival. This event is brought to you by the Cultural & Entertainment District of Main Street Elkader and will be held Saturday, August 15th & Sunday, August 16th (always the 3rd weekend in August). We cannot believe five amazing festivals have already taken place. We absolutely could not have come this far without the support of our strong community.

As Art in the Park establishes Elkader as a tourist destination for art, our main goal is to bring a culturally-enriched, art-filled, family fun weekend to the community. Each year, at least 50 artists have set up tents displaying their work. Paired with the artists includes delicious local foods and wines, sculpture reveals, promotion of local activities and creatives such as aerial pilates, henna tattoos, and much more. It has also included a youth tent containing art-filled activities for all ages, along with an area youth art contest. Each year, the live music has expanded, bringing local and tri-state area musicians, playing all types of genres.

We have BIG goals for 2020 and want to continue making this weekend a joyous, cultural experience for the artists, volunteers, visitors, and everyone in the community.

These goals include:

  • Beginning a new artist application process, Zapplication (this is a way we can draw in professional artist applications from all over the U.S.)
  • Continuing our “Green Efforts” (we are determined to make our festival as sustainable and eco-friendly as possible to set an example)
  • New sculpture collaborations
  • Artist workshops
  • Art in the Alley Promotion
  • And so much more… As all the members of the committee are creative individuals, we love to brainstorm throughout the entire year, adding in ideas as we see fit during the planning stages!

This regional fine art festival is significant as it continues the cultural and artistic expansion of Elkader, something truly unique about this community of ours. With your help, we can continue making this festival a success!

How can you help?

  1. Volunteer! Our volunteers mean the world to us and make the festival what it is. Simply giving some of your time to help out, helps us out tremendously. If you are interested, please contact Volunteer@ArtintheParkElkader.com. This is a fun experience and you will receive a VIP ticket to the complimentary Art After Dark Reception.
  2. Sponsor! Being a sponsor comes with many perks, but most importantly, you are supporting something so very important to the Elkader Community. You are helping the arts and culture expand which only brings community closer and helps keep it sustainable. Art in the Park is completely supported by its sponsors so we do not take your contributions lightly, you are SO appreciated!
  3. Share Our Stuff & Leave a Review! We keep our Art in the Park info updated through this blog, our Facebook and Instagram, and newsletters. Sharing Art in the Park through social media, word-of-mouth, etc. is the most perfect way to market this experience! And if you have visited the festival in previous years, be sure to leave a review.


The Art in the Park Committee cannot wait for 2020’s event and we hope you are just as excited!



Ashley Althoff (Marketing Coordinator & Co-Chair)

Jillian Webb Herrmann (Artist Coordinator & Co-Chair)

Sally Stendel (Sponsor Coordinator)

Kate Lower (Main Street Elkader Director)

Art in the Park 2019!


The 5th annual Art in the Park took place on Aug 17th and 18th, 2019, in Founders’ Park, Elkader, IA. Fifty artists represented several cities across Iowa, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Michigan. Live music was provided by ten different groups over the course of the two day event. The musicians ranged from local, Elkader & Strawberry Point, to Cedar Rapids, Minneapolis, and more.  Food trucks served up a delicious variety, while festival goers took a break to eat between shopping, and to taste wine.  All weekend kids enjoyed painting a large collaborative mural in the Kids Art tent and made their own masterpieces to take with them. Kids were also encouraged to vote for their favorite artist at the event. North Carolina muralist, Brian Davis, visited with onlookers as he completed two impressive murals in Elkader’s main alley during the festival weekend.  Throughout the event, organizers and artists were flooded with positive comments from visitors about the high quality level of art, the beautiful scenery, and our community… and that’s what we like to hear!

Also happening over the weekend at Art in the Park:

  • A youth art exhibit,
  • Installation art throughout the park,
  • A Creative Chairs silent auction,
  • A chance to vote for your favorite artist with the People’s Choice Ballot,
  • A collaborative piece created by the Clayton County Artists group that was auctioned during the event to raise money for future festivals,
  • Raffles for ArtBuck$, vouchers that could be used on artwork during the festival weekend,
  • Signs pointing to all of Elkader’s new murals that were completed over the summer by the Art in the Alley Project,
  • And wonderful volunteers helping out along the way

Art in the Park is an event of Main Street Elkader, organized by a volunteer committee, and supported by the community.  It is more than a weekend we celebrate local and regional artists. It is a year round promotion of Elkader, our community, and entire region. Each year our sample survey, taken by visitors who return their People’s Choice Ballots, has shown an increase in the amount of visitors who are seeing Elkader for the very first time. This year our survey showed that 12.6 percent of festival visitors were experiencing Elkader for the first time, which was up from 8 percent the first year! Several of our surveys indicated they were returning for the 2nd, 3rd, or more years. Every year the feedback has been overwhelmingly positive of not only the quality of art, the variety of art, but also of our entire community-spirit and town. This speaks volumes to our local community, our sponsors, and our volunteers – and we cannot thank you enough.

Creating a fifty artist event has enabled us to provide this great diversity in artistic media, while maintaining a balance of supply and demand for our vendors. There is so much to enjoy in our downtown and we’ve been happy to hear that many of our festival patrons ventured out to our local shops, restaurants, bars, gas stations, bed and breakfasts, campgrounds, and more.

Elkader, continues to grow as an art destination, and our mission is to continue to provide an outstanding cultural experience, a fine art festival that treats our artists like royalty, wows our visitors, and leaves everyone planning their next trip northeast Iowa.


2019 Artist Awards:

The People’s Choice Award, sponsored by FreedomBank, was given to Kris Grover, fiber artist from Marshalltown, IA.

The Committee Choice Award, sponsored by Central State Bank, was given to Rich Herrmann, photographer from Mount Vernon, IA.

The Merchant Choice Award, sponsored by Brown’s Sales and Leasing, was given to Richard Robertson, ceramics from Asbury, IA.

& the first ever

Juror Choice Award was selected by the 2019 guest juror and went to Elizabeth Robertson, ceramics from Asbury, IA.


Thank you to each and every person who volunteered to help make this event possible!

Jillian Webb Herrmann – Chair + Artist Relations

Julie Carlisle-Kane – Food + Music

Ashley Althoff – Social Media + Design

Benjamin Friedrich – Marketing + Design

Sally Stendel – Sponsorship

Kate Lower – Main Street Director

Dawn Herrmann – Hospitality

Adam Scott – Music

The City of Elkader

The Main Street Elkader Board

Dan Cooke (Thrivent) – Volunteer Tent

Robin Ohrt – Sound

Marvin Duff – Emcee

Lynn Larson – Hospitality

Steven Warren – Art After Dark / Hospitality

Sadie Richter – Kids Art Tent

Talia Blaskovich – Volunteer Tent

Teri Ann Gregerson Marting

Shannon Durbin Dallenbach – ArtHaus Spin Art Activity

Dave Herrmann

Zach Herrmann

Douglas Brady

Cecil Carnes

Jack and Randa Niewoehner

Roger and Rosemary Thomas

Jennifer Cowsert

Kay and Jay Moser

Vicky Carolyn

Robert Hauber

Laura Duff

Suann Eaton

Kimberly Henny

Michael Henny

Brenda Ceilley

Mady Gregerson

Ann and Dave Gibney

Lisa Pope

Tina Neiland

Coz Lindsay

Amanda Diers

Micah Minor

Cindy Martin

Britt Williams

Bev Hamann – Artist Award Photos

Janet Ott

Becky Dempster

Ed and Kathy Josten

Josh Pope

Tim Kane

Steve Stendel

Becky Lower

Cris Glawe

Gary Siegwarth


Special thanks to our Youth Volunteers!






& friends


And thank you again to all of our generous Sponsors!