RiverArts 9th Annual “Paint the Town”: A Plein Air Festival


After a brutally cold winter, what better way to savor the warmth and beauty of early spring than to come to RiverArts 9th Annual “Paint the Town”, April 26-29, where more than fifty talented artists will paint Chestertown and the surrounding countryside and waterways.

Artists come from throughout the mid-Atlantic region and as far away as Washington, D.C. and New York. In fact, Chestertown has been voted the “best place to escape” in Maryland.

Many artists paint scenes of historic Chestertown and the surrounding small towns and countryside recommended by local artists, while some  arrive a day early to scout out Kent County,  looking for something that seems special to them. The result is a wonderful  range of paintings that include historic buildings and street scenes, gardens, rural expanses, seascapes, nautical views, and more.

The artists will paint for three days while visitors can watch them at work. On Thursday and Friday they will paint wherever they choose in Kent and upper Queen Anne’s Counties. On Saturday the artists are encouraged to paint in downtown Chestertown during which time one of Maryland’s most popular Farmers’ Markets is in town.

The paintings are framed and will be available for sale at the free “Wet Paint Reception and Sale” on Saturday, April 28, 5:30-8:00pm at RiverArts, 315 High Street. The artists will have their own say by voting “Best in Show” and “Best Body of Work”. Sales tend to be brisk so visitors are encouraged to make their choices during the reception. However, if more time is needed, the paintings can be viewed on Sunday morning.

On Sunday there will be a “Quick Draw” where artists have two hours to paint a scene. Several artists who were not able to participate in the four-day event, will be able to participate in the Quick Draw competition.  These paintings will also be for sale 11am-noon. They will be shown in Fountain Park. In case of inclement weather, the paintings will be moved to the breezeway near RiverArts. A judge will award 1st, 2nd, and 3rd places. Visitors will be encouraged to vote for the “People’s Choice Award”.

Chestertown is 90 miles from Baltimore, Washington D.C. and Phildelphia. It is worth making a day or weekend trip to see so many artists at work. For information on lodging, restaurants, and other attractions go to www.kentcounty.com or contact our Tourism Department at 410-778-0416.

For more information visit www.chestertownriverarts.org call RiverArts at 410 778 6300.

Chestertown RiverArts Galleries are located at 315 High Street, Suite 106, Chestertown, MD21620 – (in the breezeway).  Gallery hours are Tuesday – Friday, 11 AM to 5:30 PM, Saturday 10 AM to 5:30 PM, Sunday (April – December) 11 AM to 3 PM, and open on First Fridays until 8 PM.

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