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Cottonwood Art Festival brings fine art, music and more to a Richardson park

People walking around the Cottonwood Art Festival.
Alexandra Olivia
The Dallas Morning News
Attendees walk around the Cottonwood Arts Festival in Richardson.

This weekend, Cottonwood Park in Richardson will transform into a venue for the semi-annual Cottonwood Art Festival.

The festival will feature over 200 artists, live music, food and children’s art activities. It’s located by a playground, picnic area and trails.

Dianna Lawrence, Richardson’s superintendent of community events, says the city welcomes the opportunity to present art in a different, more unique environment. “We take fine artwork and we bring it into a park,” she said.

For those who might typically be intimidated by fine art, the community-oriented, outdoor atmosphere can feel more casual. Typically, the festival draws over 35,000 people during the weekend.

Many visitors come from the Dallas-Fort Worth area, but others also come from across Texas.

“It's a very laid back atmosphere. So it really lends itself to kind of take your time and walk through the park with your family and really have the opportunity to kind of engage with the artist and really experience what their artwork is,” Lawrence said.

Lawrence said Cottonwood offers a variety of art at different price points.

“There's definitely something for everyone. A lot of our artists do have original pieces, but there will be some artists that do have prints of a lesser price point. So there's really a lot for anyone to experience depending on the type of art enthusiast you are,” she said.

The festival also provides a space for children to paint canvases, make pottery and more at the ArtStop Children’s area. High school seniors who are part of the Cottonwood Festival’s Emerging Artist Program will have the opportunity to exhibit at the Eisemann Center and sell their art at the festival. Matt Tedder and Almost Jaded and other local musicians will perform live music during the festival.

Parking and admission is free for the event on May 6 and 7. Learn more about the festival.

Arts Access is an arts journalism collaboration powered by The Dallas Morning News and KERA.

This community-funded journalism initiative is funded by the Better Together Fund, Carol & Don Glendenning, City of Dallas OAC, Communities Foundation of Texas, The Dallas Foundation, Eugene McDermott Foundation, James & Gayle Halperin Foundation, Jennifer & Peter Altabef and The Meadows Foundation. The News and KERA retain full editorial control of Arts Access’ journalism.

Elizabeth Myong is KERA’s Arts Collaborative Reporter. She came to KERA from New York, where she worked as a CNBC fellow covering breaking news and politics. Before that, she freelanced as a features reporter for the Houston Chronicle and a modern arts reporter for Houstonia Magazine.