It’s a holiday weekend and Marietta is kicking it off with First Friday, Marietta Main Street’s monthly event. This month, the event is an Art Walk sponsored by Wood Heating and Air Conditioning, and downtown businesses are offering a myriad of reasons to spend the evening. Not only will most business be open until 9:00 p.m., but Marietta Main Street is also hosting an Artist Village on Butler Street, with over a dozen local artists and small makers ready to meet visitors and sell their products.

On the Armory lawn, United Way Alliance of the MOV will host Kid Central, and Artsbridge will have a tent with various artists and art forms, so families can begin the evening with kid friendly activities. Visitors can also enjoy live music from the River Cities Symphony and vendors will be selling new and used vinyl at the Record Sale. Plus, the Historic Harmar Bridge Co. will be set up to talk about progress made to restore the Historic Harmar Bridge and sell raffle tickets for the Harmar Bridge Summer Raffle, where ticket holders have a chance to win a 2021 Toyota Tacoma. The Washington County Health Department is also going to be set up on the Armory Lawn with a vaccination clinic, so swing by and get your COVID-19 vaccine!

The Marietta Record Sale at the Armory during June First Friday (Cristie Thomas, Marietta Main Street)

Stacey Saunders, owner of Honey Bun Bakery, said she is looking forward to participating in the Artist Village this Friday. “I am excited for Honey Bun Bakery to be part of its first community event and for more people to try the products!” she said. Saunders will be selling homemade sweets, including iced sugar cookies, strawberry cloud cookies, s’mores bars, lemon blueberry bread, and zucchini bread – all made with fresh and local ingredients.

“I can’t wait to meet my customers and have a fun evening out,” said Saunders. “There are always really positive vibes at First Friday, so I’m eager to be part of it! Come by our tent and satisfy your sweet tooth!”

Participating artists in this month’s village include Bruce Wunderlich, Cornerstone Homestead, Little Muskingum Kettle Farm, Henry Lee Herbal Co., and more!

Monster Cookies from Honey Bun Bakery (Stacey Saunders)

At Riverside Artist Gallery, Friday is the opening night of the new month-long show “Red, White and Blue.” The gallery will display art in various mediums highlighting the colors of our flag and the importance of the American experiment, “freedom, liberty and justice for all.”

“Riverside Artists are excited to share the colors of our flag and the importance of voting in our democracy through our art in the Red, White and Blue she opening this First Friday,” said Betsey Cook, an artist at Riverside.

Wit & Whimzy will be hosting Pennsylvania artist Craig Peterson and his nature-inspired art. Craig creates beautiful watercolor prints and coasters and he will have a large variety to browse and buy. Teri Ann’s will host Windy Ridge Forge—a blacksmith shop that creates unique, one-of-a-kind pieces of metalworks out of recycled metal. American Flags and Poles will host Michael Dickenson who will talk with visitors about his paintings. Hive Alive will feature new art by Cynthia Davis, and plein air paintings from around the city. Find art by Kat Hendrickson at Just A Jar Design press and painting with Ben Guterlet at Over the Moon Pub and Pizza, just to name a few!

Live Music at Jeremiah’s Coffee House (Michelle Waters)

Visitors can tune in to live music at Jeremiah’s Coffee House while they enjoy a beverage or treat, and most eateries have outdoor dining areas to take advantage of the summer evening. Local artist WyldeRMOV will also be set up with handmade items for sale.

Additionally, many participating businesses are offering sales – like Teri Ann’s Big Summer Sale with 30% off summer items, 20% off watches at Gold Line Jewelers, and 10% every purchase at Sugar Maple Boutique.

“This July First Friday also marks one whole month of our Designated Outdoor Refreshment Area (DORA) and 11 downtown establishments are at the ready with their DORA cups to sell alcoholic drinks to downtown visitors to enjoy as they stroll,” said Marietta Main Street Executive Director, Cristie Thomas.

A DORA drink from The Original Pizza Place (Olivia Reeder)

First Fridays have become a popular event and are usually one of downtown Marietta’s busiest nights. From 5:00 – 9:00 p.m., the sidewalks take on a festive atmosphere as people eat, drink, shop and gather with friends.

Thomas would like to thank this month’s sponsor, Craig Wood, for his support. “It’s thanks to our event sponsors that these events are provided for our community to enjoy!”

Warm summer evening, art, music, food and drink – what better way to kick off a long holiday weekend?

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