Dear Elk Rapids community,

For the last 2 years, Experience Art Rapids was a 14 day community art gallery indoors and out. With collaborative efforts from our business community in venues and contributions, Art Rapids! engaged over 100 artists to assist in our mission: to enhance art education and cultural experiences to our community. Each year our event was successful:  art was sold, our local economy was boosted in the month of June, with business venues discovered and patronized. 

In spite of the success felt by all involved, it also proved to be a huge task to undertake with our very small non profit board and budget. So Art Rapids! has decided that we will NOT be repeating Experience AR in 2019. It is our desire to broaden our scope of art in our community in the coming years to follow.

As we redirect our passionate spirit of the organization we look forward to steering more energies to the Walk of Art Sculpture Park, Student/Community Scholarships, and a diverse approach to increasing Performance Arts to the Elk Rapids area annually. 

If you are interested in becoming a part of Art Rapids! as a volunteer, check out our website at www.artrapids.org.  My contact info is there as well....I would love to hear from you!!!   Thank you Elk Rapids for your continued support !

Becky Lancaster, President

Artists Scott Nelles of Elk Rapids, and Corey Van Duinen of Grand Rapids were named winners of the 2nd annual Experience Art Rapids!, a two week long juried showcase here of some 385 works of art by over 127 artists.

Nelles won the People’s Choice Award and $2,500 prize. His “Ferris Wheel” in aluminum and bronze was the pick of the hundreds of visitors who made this historic Grand Traverse Bayside village a must stop over the past two weeks. 

Winning the top juried selection and $2,500 was Van Duinen’s “Narcissus in the Garden of Malcontent” in wood, the jurors’ pick from a pool of  multiple finalists.

The select four Jurors’ Finalists who were each awarded $250 for their entries include:

·      Franklin Delgado, “Eternity Descending Into Time”

·      Kimber Bilby, “Bee Hives”

·      Andrew Otis, “Fish Vessel”

·      Colleen O’Rourke, “Worm’s Eye View”

Jurors also awarded three Honorable Mentions for superior work to:

·      Scott Nelles, “Cityscape”

·      Jacky Trimble, “12x4”

·      Barbara Van Pelt, “Family Group”

People’s Choice finalists and $250 winners were:

·      Franklin Delgado, “Eternity Descending Into Time”

·      Mike Hyrman, “3D Illusion”

·      Corey Van Duinen, “Narcissus In the Garden of Malcontent”

·      Janelle Dahlberg, “Water Phenomena”

People’s Choice honorable mentions:

·      Colleen O’Rourke, “Big Ass Nude”

·      Elizabeth Iorio, “Summer Day, Elk Rapids Harbor”

·      Franklin Delgado, “Inner Immensity (Agape)”

People’s Choice Body of Work:

·      Kenneth Hershenson, “I DO Know Jack”

The selections were announced Saturday evening, June 23, at a private event hosted by the Art Rapids Committee, presenters of the event, at the Elk Rapids Town Hall. 

Assessing the Art Rapids! committee’s staging a combination juried and People’s Choice Award exhibit, Laura Andersen, event chair, said she was very pleased with overall reaction. “We have had nothing but positive comments from our happy and growing core of artists. And our business community has again stepped up and provided varied viewing venues, to display art work, while welcoming show goers. We have lots of smiles around town. And I think that says it all….”

Joining artists at the reception were EAR! sponsors, business venue hosts, and the many volunteers who ensured the success of this summer’s second annual event.


In 2006 a group of arts minded citizens launched a single day summer art fair, that over the years, and thanks to a dedicated core of volunteers and supportive businesses, has grown to this year’s two-week long Experience Art Rapids! event.

“This is all about a mix of artists and businesses collaborating to bring people together to experience the richness of art and the talented artisans who create it,” notes Laura Andersen, Art Rapids board member and this year’s EAR! chair.

Artwork was viewed at various businesses and venues,  as well as the popular beachfront Walk of Art Park, where newly installed sculptures were on display.

Since its inception, the Art Rapids organization has not only raised arts awareness, but they’ve provided higher education and scholarships to aspiring art students; given grants to teachers, schools and groups; organized art classes, and developed the Walk of Art outdoors sculpture park that is free to the public.

Click here to view the features and schedule of 2018 Experience Art Rapids.

View 2018 Experience Art Rapids jurors here!