Stroll through the colorful sidewalks of Historic Downtown McKinney on Saturday, April 12, for the annual Arts in Bloom festival. McKinney Main Street, the McKinney Performing Arts Center (MPAC) and the shops in downtown McKinney invite those near and far to experience art in all forms as it blossoms throughout the historic district with art, music, food, shopping and fun for the entire family.

The highlight of the Arts in Bloom festival is the ArtWalk, beginning at 10 a.m. and lasting through the early evening. More than 150 local and regional painters, sculptors, jewelry-artists, photographers and musicians will line the streets throughout the 12-block area of downtown to showcase their artistic talents.

This year, Arts in Bloom features several exciting new additions. One can’t-miss feature, which happens to be a new addition to this year’s festival, will be a roaring family-friendly street party and crawfish boil on Kentucky Street from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. Hosted by the Chamber’s Women’s Alliance of McKinney (WAM), the crawfish boil will raise money for scholarships and projects in McKinney benefitting women. Kids’ activities will be available to entertain the little ones while participants enjoy a Zydeco Band and feast on pounds of Cajun crawfish.

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If you prefer locally grown produce to the tastes of the Big Easy, check out the Farmers Market at Chestnut Square from 8 a.m. to noon. Vendors at the market offer a wide range of goods like local and organic meat, dairy, honey and produce as well as sauces, canned goods, pasta, baked goods, wine and flowers.

Another exciting addition to the festival is the Music in Motion program, designed by The Arts and Music Guild to unite visual artists and musicians. During Arts in Bloom, featured band Page 43 will play original music and classic jazz in a continuous music format led by saxophonist Jason Davis. Band members include music students from the University of North Texas and professional musicians from the Dallas music scene.

“Arts in Bloom provides one event to showcase the city’s wonderful historic district and celebrate our burgeoning arts scene with the community and visitors,” said Amy Rosenthal, Director of MPAC and McKinney Main Street. “The arts are a big part of the unique atmosphere downtown McKinney offers. This year is special, since it coincides with Second Saturdays to extend the fun of the daytime events into the evening.”

Second Saturdays will begin at 7 p.m. when the ArtWalk is wrapping up. Enjoy an evening of art, music and wine as you explore the local art galleries, listen to great musical talent and taste cuisine from some of the area’s best eateries.

Arts in Bloom is sponsored by the McKinney Community Development Corporation. For more information call 972-547-2660 or visit downtownmckinney.com.