The 18th Annual ArtWalk will turn downtown Livermore into an “art district for the day” on Saturday, Oct. 12, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. The event, sponsored by Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center, celebrates the many ways the arts bring the community together in a showcase that features handmade and original works by over 200 artists, as well as live music, performances, hands-on crafts, and fun raffle prizes.

The “Building Bridges” community art project will be featured at the center of the event, on the stairs leading to the Bankhead Plaza. A visual expression of how art unites a community, the project is made up of small visuals submitted on 5-inch by 7-inch postcards that show what people love most about Livermore. The cards could be submitted by anyone during the past month at the Bothwell Arts Center in any format, including drawing, painting, photography, multi-media, poetry, and more.

For nearly two decades, the annual ArtWalk has offered an opportunity for artists to interact with visitors as they explore a broad range of works ranging from contemporary to classical, abstract to realism, pottery to jewelry, and mixed media. Art is shared in booths spread across the downtown area, from the Bankhead Theater lobby to the Livermore Art Association Gallery at Carnegie Park, clustered along parks, sidewalks, galleries, wine bars, restaurants and shops. The event highlights all that downtown Livermore has to offer and honors art as the theme of the day.

McLeod Street will be closed between First and Second Streets for displays and free art activities for the young and young-at-heart. Artist Nana-Dictta Graves will offer a mini-workshop to make hats from recycled materials, and Way Up Art & Frame will offer the opportunity for everyone to experiment with art materials.

Art not only unites the community, it involves the whole community. Veteran artists led by Bud Donaldson, and as well as high schools in the Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District, will display their work in the Bankhead lobby. This year, there will also be a booth by a group of teens who are launching a project called The Butterfly Effect, as well as a booth by “Choose Love,” a program developed by educators to promote self-empowerment, resilience, connection and optimism among students. The Gallery at the Bankhead is exhibiting “Where Art & Nature Meet” through October, featuring over 60 works that express the many wonders of the natural world, as seen through the eyes of local artists. Other community organizations and family-friendly activities and demonstrations will also be available during ArtWalk.

Throughout the day, live music performances will be presented on the plaza and at the Wine Arbor at Livermorium Park. Sponsored by the Livermore Cultural Arts Council, the Wine Arbor offers visitors an opportunity to enjoy music while they rest in the shade and savor a glass of wine from Big White House Winery and John Evan Cellars.

Most artwork is available for purchase. To encourage people to invest in art and artists, those who purchase more than $200 in art, jewelry, crafts or other products during ArtWalk are eligible for a special drawing to win a hand-painted wooden box filled with three Gold Medal-winning Livermore Valley wines. In addition, all visitors can participate in fun raffles every hour for restaurant gift cards, tickets, and an UpTown Girlz Salon basket.

More information and entry forms will be at the three ArtWalk information booths. To help everyone see all there is to see, bicycle rickshaws powered by All Together Mobile Bike Rentals, will be available to visit all parks and participating galleries.