25th Art on the Avenue set for Saturday in West Reading

Free festival to feature art, live music, and food

WEST READING, Pa. - One of Berks County's premiere art and music festivals will take center stage in West Reading on Saturday.

The borough's main thoroughfare will serve as the setting for the 25th annual Art on the Avenue, hosted by the West Reading Community Revitalization Foundation (WRCRF).

The free juried event will showcase the work of local and regional artists, crafters, vendors, borough businesses, and musicians, with 13 bands performing live on two stages.

"Having been involved in Art on the Avenue from its very first year, I am so impressed with its growth, now four full blocks in the 25th year," said Mark Ratcliffe, West Reading's Main Street manager. "From the Mural Corridor to the overwhelming support of regional and local artists supporting the Plein Air events as well as setting up booths to interact on the Avenue, it is a true showcase of the creative spirit in our community."

Prior to the 11 a.m. opening, Safe Berks will take a stand against domestic abuse and violence with its "Walk for No More," starting in the 700 block of Penn Avenue and continuing east to the 400 block, where the organization will partner with Berks Arts Council to offer music, children's crafts, and activities throughout the day.

"We are thrilled to announce our new partnership with Berks Arts Council/SafeBerks activating the 400 block, bringing in arts nonprofits and two additional entertainment stages," Ratcliffe said. "We are excited to invite everyone to our biggest event of the year!"

For the fourth year, Plein Air West Reading, organized by the WRCRF and Art Plus Gallery at 604 Penn Avenue, will showcase the paintings of more than 50 artists who have been painting outdoor scenes of West Reading and Berks County for the past three days. 69 News caught up with one of the artists outside the The American Diner in the 400 block of Penn Avenue on Friday.

The festival will continue until 8 p.m.

The music schedule, subject to change, is as follows:

6th Avenue Stage:
Noon – 12:40: The Inner Urge Band
1:00 – 1:40: Jeff Mallon & the Bare Minimum
2:00 – 2:40: Grexin’
3:00 – 3:40: Talk Louder!
4:00 – 4:45: YAM YAM
5:05 – 6:10: Big Beat Tornado (Reunion Show)
6:30 – 7:45: Flux Capacitor

(* 12:40 + 1:40: Allegro Dance performances)

7th Avenue Stage:
12:30 – 1:15: Culture Trip Band
1:35 – 2:20: Be
2:40 – 3:25: thequietcampaign
3:45 – 4:30: Erin Margaret and The Punk Folk
4:50 – 5:35: fire company
6:00 – 7:00: Non-Zero-Sum Jazz Collective

400 block stages:
12:00 – Impromptu/Jason Rymshaw – Main Stage
Allegro Dance – performance area
1:00 – Dead Jimmy/Dave Hartranft – Main Stage
Allegro Dance – performance area
2:00 – Berks Ballet Theatre – Performance Area
3:00 – Jarrett Heckart – Main Stage
Martial Arts Demonstration – performance area
4:00 – John King Dance Band – performance area
5:00 – Justin Bortz – Main Stage

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