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ARTS/West to Celebrate 10th Anniversary with Three-Day Event

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Athens area residents are invited to celebrate ARTS/West’s 10th anniversary with a weekend-long event, Aug. 14-16.

The celebration gets underway on Friday, Aug. 14 at 5 p.m. with an art opening of work by past gallery exhibitors, music by Bruce and Gay Dalzell and a dedication of the performance space to the late Bob Winters, a longtime supporter of ARTS/West and a champion of arts in Southeast Ohio.

On Saturday, Aug. 15, doors open at 11 a.m. for full day of music, performances, visual art and kids’ activities. Festivities will kick off with a costumed hot dog eating contest sponsored by O’Betty’s and wrap up with the annual Athens Community Music Festival that evening. In addition, Patty Mitchell will be on hand with her balloon creations and food will be available from the Holy Guacamole food cart.

The final day, Sunday, Aug. 16, begins at 2 p.m. with a set from local musician Megan Wormz Bihn. The weekend will conclude with a noise show presented by Aquabear Legion.

All three days will include refreshments and an archival room dedicated to the history of ARTS/West.

In June of 2005, the City of Athens purchased a former church building, which would later become ARTS/West, with funding from the city’s revolving loan fund. This loan utilized the Ohio Department Development Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds. Money left from this fund was used for renovation of the property, along with money donated by the O’Bleness Foundation, Hocking Valley Bank and an Olympian Founders campaign.

Renovation of the building was split into two phases. In the first phase, changes necessary to make a flexible, serviceable performance space available would be accomplished. Once completed, the second phase commenced with work that would perfect the functionality of the building and allow more varied use of facility.

By mid-July 2005, the first classes were held and booked to continue in the fall. Renovation work was scheduled throughout the summer and fall of 2005. The first renovation task, to transform the former sanctuary into a performance space, took place in August and September.

The mission of ARTS/West is to make facilities, resources, and opportunities available to arts organizations, individual artists and community residents; harness community focus for all individuals engaged in the creation, performance and exhibition of the arts; and to promote activities preserving the beauty, heritage, and culture of Athens.

The schedule is as follows:


5-6 p.m. Open house/art opening with Michael Tobar (piano)

6-7 p.m. Dedication of Bob Winters plaque

7-8 p.m. Music with Bruce and Gay Dalzell

8-9:30 p.m. Front & Center Garage Bands


11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Open house

12-1 p.m. Hot dog eating contest sponsored by O’Betty’s

1-2 p.m. OVST performance

2-3 p.m. Yang Miller’s kids’ digital films/belly dancing performance

3-4 p.m. SATB Choir

4-5 p.m. Music by Laura Nadeau

5-6 p.m. Local teen band

6-7 p.m. Brick Monkey Theater Ensemble

7-8 p.m. Music by Charlie and Celia Lewis

8-9 p.m. Ohio University Jazz Ensemble

9-10 p.m. Athens Community Music Festival — The Gatherers


2-3 p.m. Music by Megan Wormz Bihn

3-4 p.m. Chelsa and Metra Peterson

4-5 p.m. Brian Wiebe Film

5-7 p.m. Aquabear Legion Noise Show

For more information, visit or the ARTS/West Facebook page.