Wandering through ArtsWalk October

A YART Artists' vendor booth, where handmade items are sold
for under $40 in Muncie, Oct. 6, 2022. Ashton Connelly, DN
A YART Artists' vendor booth, where handmade items are sold for under $40 in Muncie, Oct. 6, 2022. Ashton Connelly, DN

Thursday, Muncie Downtown Development Partnership hosted ArtsWalk October, where local artists, performers, food vendors and attendees transformed Walnut St. into a marketplace.

YART, or a yard sale for art, saw over 170 vendor artists and five different community groups, creating the largest Muncie YART Susan Banner has seen thus far. Susan Banner’s daughter, Moth Banner, organized the event.

“It’s just grown and grown and grown and every time we do it, it gets bigger,” Susan said. “It’s phenomenal.”

Muncie YART filled a portion of Walnut St., and the vendors ranged from Ball State University art students to older adults selling their unique, handmade crafts. One of the only regulations Muncie YART requires is no item can be priced higher than $40. Otherwise, vendors do not have to pay nor give any sort of commission, according to Susan.

Muncie YART isn’t the only part of ArtsWalk that draws crowds either. PrimeTrust FCU’s Soup Crawl made a return after a two-year hiatus since 2020. 

For $20, attendees were given a ticket and a mission to tour parts of downtown to sample all kinds of different soups from different vendors. All proceeds from the Soup Crawl ticket sales goes towards Second Harvest Food Bank and feeding the hungry, according to Ben Polk, marketing coordinator for PrimeTrust FCU.

“We sold out of tickets,” Polk said. “We do 600 tickets every year just so the vendors have an idea of how much they’re making, [and] every year we sell out. This year is no exception.” 

A stilt-walking performer wades through the crowd at ArtsWalk October in Muncie, Oct. 6, 2022. Ashton Connelly, DN

Polk, PrimeTrust FCU and the Soup Crawl were all looking forward to continuing to partner with ArtsWalk going forward. ArtsWalk October had its fair share of performances on the Canan Commons stage and in Dave’s Alley, too, from Mr. Daniel singing along with kids for some interactive entertainment to George Wolfe & America’s Hometown Band Jazz Combo.

Other venues from around the downtown area had open houses and events to get in on the ArtsWalk crowd, like the North Church Venue with its “One Night in Salem” or the Muncie Makes Lab with a group exhibition curated by artists Grif Williams and Lexi Musselman, according to the official release by Downtown Muncie Development Partnership.

The Downtown Muncie Development Partnership hosts events every first Thursday of the month, but ArtsWalks are two separate times a year. ArtsWalk is set to return June 1, 2023, with the “Brink of Summer,” according to their website.

Contact Ashton Connelly with comments via email at ajconnelly@bsu.edu or on Twitter @AshtonJConnelly.

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