When it comes to the fine arts, Columbia has long been a creative epicenter for innumerable artists working in a variety of mediums, including painting, sculpture, photography, film, dance and music. This spring, Columbia celebrates its creative side with multiple art-focused events.


First Fridays in the North Village Arts District

This spring, attendees will have several opportunities to peruse and purchase artwork, watch artists in the act of creation and enjoy live music during the First Fridays event series in the North Village Arts District. On the first Friday of every month, the North Village Arts District, located just north of Broadway Street in downtown, will collectively open its doors from 6-9 p.m., encouraging locals and visitors alike to explore and appreciate the ever-growing collection of art and entertainment that Columbia offers. 

The North Village Arts District is the city's self-proclaimed "bohemian paradise," comprised of over 150 artists' work spaces, galleries, dance studios, a music school, distillery and more. First Friday events are free and open to the public and continue throughout the year. For a complete list of First Friday dates, and for more information on the North Village Arts District, please visit


Artrageous Weekend Art Crawl

Artrageous Weekend takes over downtown Columbia April 10-12. Artrageous is a free event and offers the opportunity to meet and mingle with local and regional artists. And, perhaps most importantly, there will be original works in many mediums ranging from paintings and photography to sculptures and hand-crafted jewelry and wares, all of which are available for purchase.


Throughout the weekend, there will be "live paintings," hands-on demonstrations, instructional classes, live music, and more. On Friday, April 10, the art crawl takes place from 6-9 p.m. at a number of galleries, studios, boutiques and restaurants throughout the downtown district. On Saturday and Sunday, Artrageous activities will take place from 10 a.m. until 4 p.m., though the hours of each participating business will vary. For more information, including an art crawl map and full listing of participating businesses and activities, please visit


Those looking to extend their artistic evenings in Columbia can catch live concerts most nights of the week. The District, Columbia's historic downtown area, is home to many music venues, ranging in size and style. The Blue Note, the city's longtime major marquee venue, is located on North Ninth Street; Rose Music Hall, The Blue Note's "little sister," is a couple blocks away on Park Street; The Bridge, located in the North Village Arts District on Walnut Street, features live music six nights a week and is also home to the Columbia Academy of Music; and right in the heart of things on Broadway Street, there's Roxy's, an old-school rock and roll club; and NashVegas, which offers authentic honky-tonk stylings.




The celebration of creativity continues late into the spring season with the 2015 Art in the Park festival, Saturday and Sunday June 6-7, at picturesque Stephens Lake Park. First held in 1958, Art in the Park is the oldest and largest juried art festival in mid-Missouri. It is the highlight of the season in this arts-focused community, featuring over 100 visual artists from around the country displaying and selling paintings, ceramics, metal sculpture, photography, jewelry and other media. Art in the Park also will include musical and magical entertainment for children and adults alike. There will be a children's art area and the Emerging Artist Pavilion, showing work by local high school and undergraduate students. Art in the Park runs from 10 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday and 10 a.m. until 4 p.m. on Sunday. Stephens Lake Park is located at 2001 E. Broadway, just 1.5 miles east of downtown Columbia. For more information, please visit



Columbia features a mix of small town charm and friendliness with the amenities and cultural offerings of a big city. There is always something exciting to see and do in Columbia, so for more information on these and other ways to have fun in Columbia, please contact Megan McConachie at the Columbia Convention and Visitors Bureau at 800-652-0987 or at

Attention Media: Let us play host and show you around Columbia. For more information, media assistance, high-resolution photography, or to schedule a press trip hosted by the Columbia CVB, please call The Beenders-Walker Group toll-free at 800-544-8474 or email MarjorieKyle or Jo.


The Beenders Walker Group
125 E. High Street, Suite 200
Jefferson City, MO 65101