Start your summer off with this annual festival chock full of local art

One of the harbingers of the genuine arrival of summer is when the Columbus Arts Festival returns to the Downtown riverfront. The annual event is much-loved and rightly so, but the sheer volume of quality work can distract from the fact that, aside from being art in and for Columbus, it's also art by Columbus.

Start with the Big Local Art Tent. More than 60 artists from throughout the city will have their work available for sale and lead demonstrations and workshops in various mediums. And pay attention to the Emerging Artists Program participants. Ten Central Ohio artists, including Columbus' Toni Cross (fiber), Dimonde Hale (painting), Kaylyn Gouhin (mixed media) and Andrea Kaiser (jewelry), were selected to be included in this opportunity for artists to get early career festival experience.

In all, about 20 Central Ohio artists will have their work at the festival, including 2017 award-winner (and past Emerging Artist) Kate Morgan, whose fanciful and enthralling 2D and 3D figurative work has become instantly recognizable.

For the first year, the Wexner Center for the Arts will partner with the festival to present a day of Columbus music, including percussion ensemble Tigue and a trio featuring drummer Marx Lomax (who's busy this week, as you'll see elsewhere on this page), saxophonist Eddie Bayard and DJ Krate Digga.