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Lynn gets a creative celebration with upcoming ArtWeek

Last year's ArtWeek's Explore Tour stops in front of a mural done by Raw Art Works in Central Square as they explore the history of Downtown Lynn. (Spenser R. Hasak)

LYNN — Last year, ArtWeek, an annual 10-day festival that celebrates arts, culture, and creativity, invited communities statewide to participate for the first time. Lynn dipped its toe in the water and liked how it felt.

So this year, said Carolyn Cole, director of the Downtown Lynn Cultural District, the city’s creative community is diving headfirst into the festival, presenting 28 events from April 26 to May 5. Most are free and family-friendly.

“People jumped at the chance to participate this year,” Cole said. “We all knew we wanted to continue after last year’s success and expand on it.”

Visitors last year came from as far away as Western Massachusetts and New Hampshire, said Cole. Many from Cambridge and Boston who had read about downtown Lynn’s murals and resurgence came out of sheer curiosity.

Arts organizations in several towns, including Natick and Franklin, invited Cole to speak about how the city’s and region’s creative communities are working together to shine a spotlight on all that the North Shore has to offer.

“I asked how many had been in Lynn lately, and two people total raised their hands. I told them, ‘You won’t go out (of Lynn) the way you came in,’ that they would be impressed by all that is happening here. I wanted to show everybody how exceptional the arts scene is in Lynn. It’s a community catalyst,” said Cole.

One new program, transpARTation, is a collaborative event with Swampscott’s ReachArts and Salem’s Public Arts Commission. During rush hour on Friday, April 26, at the commuter rail station in all three communities, artists and musicians will be on each platform, inviting train riders to sing, paint and have fun. Lynn musician Dave Simmons will set up a small sound system at the Central Square stop for folks who want to join in.

“What connects us all? Literally, that purple train,” said Cole. “We were told, in the history of ArtWeek, communities have never done something like this, working together on one project. The Lynn, City of Firsts tradition continues.”

The MBTA jumped on board, and helped Cole, ReachArts president Jackie Kinney, and Kate Luchini, the Lynn Cultural District’s first director who now helms Salem’s arts commission, make this happen.

Among Lynn’s ArtWeek offerings are several different walking tours, history-oriented ones led by Michelle Guzman and a vintage neon and street art tour by the Beyond Walls team. Ironbound will present a Food Truck Festival, galleries will open their doors to showcase local artists and sponsor classes, and there will be an opportunity to view and learn about the awe-inspiring Tiffany windows at St. Stephen’s Church. Lynn Public Schools students will present an “All-City Art Exhibit” and a “Jazz Band Showcase.” Lynn Community Television will host an open house of its studios, and a Cultural Compact Council presentation will take place at City Hall.

The full schedule of Lynn events follows. For more info on the Lynn programs, go to the ArtWeekLynn Facebook page. For the statewide ArtWeek calendar, go to www.artweekma.org.


Presented by Highland Street Foundation and produced by the Boch Center, the ArtWeek festival, formed in 2013, now has more than 100 towns throughout Massachusetts participating, presenting some 600 events.

Friday, April 26, 2019

3:30-6 p.m.

transpARTation (Lynn-Swampscott-Salem train platforms)


6-7 p.m.

Lynn at Night with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


Saturday, April 27, 2019

10 a.m. – noon

Trolley on Lynn Commons with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


10:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.

Lynn Public Library’s Historic Library Tours


11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Tiffany Windows Tour/Organ Recital at St. Stephen’s Church


11 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Artisan’s Fair at the Galleries at LynnArts (GALA)


Noon – 1 p.m.

Lynn Walking Shoe Tours Tiffany Windows en Español


Noon – 8 p.m.

Ironbound’s Food Truck Festival


5-5:45 p.m.

Michael Aghahowa Recent Works at Great Art Studio


6-7 p.m.

Lynn de Noche with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


Sunday, April 28, 2019

Noon – 1:15 p.m.

Mary Baker Eddy Tour with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


1:30-2:45 p.m.

Mary Baker Eddy Tour with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


2-4 p.m.

Mosaic Sidewalk Project in Central Square with GALA


3-7 p.m.

Elizabeth Hall performs at Bent Water Brewing


Monday, April 29, 2019

7-9 p.m.

Vintage Neon & Street Art Tour with Beyond Walls


Tuesday, April 30, 2019

9:30-10:30 a.m.

Mural Painting with Lynn Tech students at LynnArts


6-6:30 p.m.

Culture Council at Lynn City Hall


7-9 p.m.

LPS Jazz Band Showcase at Lynn Auditorium


Wednesday, May 1, 2019

4-6 p.m.

LPS All-City Art Exhibit at LynnArts


5-8 p.m.

Lynn Community Television Open House


6-10 p.m.

Artist Pop-Up at Bent Water Brewing


Thursday, May 2, 2019

6-9 p.m.

Life Drawing at Pick Up Modern & More


Friday, May 3, 2019

6-7 p.m.

Lynn de Noche with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


7-9 p.m.

Pictures in Stone Photo Transfer Onto Slate at OASIS


Saturday, May 4, 2019

10 a.m. – noon

Pioneers Throughout History with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours


10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Letterpress Printmaking at Raw Art Works


2-4 p.m.

Tales from the Hall at Grand Army of the Republic


Sunday, May 5, 2019

1-3 p.m.

Trolley for Pioneers with Lynn Walking Shoe Tours

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