Dr. Colin Read displays posters for the upcoming First Weekend in Plattsburgh. First Weekend will be held June 5 and 6.
The downtown area will be transformed into a lively show of community spirit and artistry for the second-First Weekend on July 5 and 6.
The First Weekend has been arranged by members of the Vision 2 Action Group, the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts (NCCCA), ROTA Gallery, the Adirondack Young Professionals (ADKYP) and area businesses. The Champlain Valley Transportation Museum (CVTM), and the Imaginarium Children’s Museum will all come together to help.
Margaret Street will be taken over Friday night with street performances and live music up and down the street while Saturday will be a family-oriented day of fun at City Hall Place between Bridge Street and Court Street.
“Friday will be for the adults and taking over Margaret Street and Saturday we’ll take over City Hall Place with something for the whole family,” said Tim McCormick, a member of the ADKYP and accountant at McCormick and Deon Tax and Accounting.
Art Walk and Chalk Art Side walks
To help “paint the town” the North Country Cultural Center for the Arts will be holding a chalk art competition for local individuals, teams and business groups to show their creativity on the streets of downtown.
“We want to bring art outside of the building and onto the street, a lot of people, families and groups of different levels of artistry can join in the fun and be a part of the weekend’s events,” said Shawna Armstrong, gallery & graphics specialist at the NCCCA.
Emily Owens, education coordinator at NCCCA, said those who register will have a designated spot of sidewalk in downtown with children participants kept on the entryway sidewalk at the NCCCA for safety.
Artists can begin their chalk art on July 5 or a rain date of July 6. Anyone interested in participating is asked to register by July 1 to secure a location to draw and submit a $5 entrance fee. Maps will be available at the art center illustrating where people can find the art and then will cast votes for their favorite pieces. Owens said the winners will be chosen based on their scores.
“Everyone who wants to participate can be a judge,” said Owens.
During first weekend the NCCCA will also be staying open till 7 p.m. on Friday and Saturday to allow visitors and community members the opportunity to check out their current exhibit, the Summer Member show, which includes artwork from 40 different artists. There will also be children’s themed activities in the gallery.
The ROTA Gallery will be joining with the NCCCA and will also be aiding in decorating the downtown by drawing the attention of pedestrians into the local businesses for an art walk. Maps will be available at the NCCCA for both the art walk and the chalk art.
Music In the Streets
McCormick said the ADKYP will provide volunteers to help facilitate the event and has taken charge of creating the sound for the weekend.
“A lot of people don’t know you do not need a permit to play music in downtown Plattsburgh, we want to facilitate a downtown with artists playing every weekend,” said McCormick.
“We’re bringing back Lowell Wurster with members of the band Lucid, and a lot of great acts,” said McCormick. “We want artists from professional to someone who just plays for fun to come out and show people in Plattsburgh the talent in this town.”
Jay LeSage will perform in front of Glens Falls National Bank, Giovanina Bucci will perform in front of Cheechako Taco, Ben Bright will play in front of the Strand Theater, and many more performers will be on hand, McCormick said.
City Hall Place will be closed from Bridge Street to Court Street from 2 to 5 p.m., during which time there will be an explosion of family fun activity.
The CVTM and Kids’ Station will be downtown on Saturday from 2 to 5 p.m. showcasing a 1939 Firestone bicycle built by the Huffy Company along with activities for children. The CVTM also invites children of all ages to discover a world of bubbles by creating bubbles with household items, experimenting with bubbles, and other exciting bubble activities.
Saturday performances will include music by Haley McGivney and by Liesa & the Masouda World Dance Ensemble.
Members of The Imaginarium will also be at the event hosting science exploration themed activities.
Future First Weekends
The various organizations will begin hosting semi-weekly meetings to prepare for the August First Weekend.
“The city did approve closure for the remaining events, however, they reserved the right to revisit the issue after this event. So we plan on attending a city council meeting to discuss the event, and hopefully show it went well,” McCormick said.
Read said hopefully by next summer First Weekend could evolve into a weekly event for Plattsburgh in the summer.
To participate in the planning for upcoming First Weekends, call McCormick at 420-2224 to find out dates and times for First Weekend meetings.