April First Friday, What to do?

New Sculpture, Krutch Park, Knoxville, April 2012

Happy Friday to everyone. It looks like the weather will be awesome for our monthly street party in the city and the crowds promise to be huge. As usual, there is so much to do in such a short amount of time, there is no way to catch it all. The most complete listing of events I’ve found is here.

A typical First Friday involves art openings all over downtown. Restaurants in particular are often the site of exhibitions of local or regional artists and this month is no exception in that regard. You might want to arrive in the downtown area as early as possible if you’d like to eat in a restaurant as the wait list grows rapidly throughout the evening. With any luck you’ll be able to enjoy some art and good food without too much wait.

New Sculpture, Krutch Park, Knoxville, April 2012

While there is still daylight left you might want to wander around Krutch Park where you will find a number of new sculptures which have been installed in the last couple of weeks. The Dogwood Arts committee decided to expand this great program last year to allow for the displays of these works of art for an entire year. I always miss some of the ones to which I’d grown accustomed, but it is also exciting to see the new works as they arrive. I’m already feeling more connected to this group than the last as a whole.

New Sculpture, Krutch Park, Knoxville, April 2012

I also enjoy watching the people, of course. Some great people watching is to be found on Krutch Park where you might typically enjoy a drum circle. Gay Street and Market Square are packed with people ranging from west Knoxville suburbanites to friends from areas surrounding the city and the usual cast of characters from downtown. The crowd is never dull.

New Sculpture, Gay Street, Knoxville

An unusual addition to this First Friday, is  the second annual Salvage Show presented by Knox Heritage. The show includes art made from architectural salvage by a list of prominent area artists. The exhibition will be held on the second floor of 36 Market Square, meaning you get the added bonus of seeing the inside of that great renovation. More details may be found here.

Morelock Music 411 South Gay Street, Music Until Late

The heart of First Friday is the arts and, in addition to art in restaurants and music spread in every direction, there are, of course, the formal galleries and this is their night to shine. The Art Market on Gay Street often has the coolest music going and featured artists from their co-op on hand to tell you about their works of art for purchase. Music is also generally found nearby at Morelock Music (standing room only) and WDVX studios at the corner of Gay and Summit Hill.

Old Photo of the 100 Block

Knoxville also has an Art District and this is where I inevitably spend most of my time. A concentration of galleries and other creative venues is clustered on the 100 Block of Gay Street and this is also the  site this First Friday of special celebrations. You can find more details here (click Art on the Block). Not only are there openings at every turn, but there is live music throughout the block as well as a drum line, fire eaters, $15 all-you-can-drink beer at 11 Cafe and much more.

New Sculpture, Krutch Park, Knoxville, April 2012

What’s not to like? Watch for me and say, “hello,” if you see me about. It promises to be a great night for everyone.