Saranac Lake is a place where visual and performing artists are at home, inspired by the surrounding lakes, forests and mountains. It’s a magnet for creative types, which is why visitors can find art around every corner, and why it’s the cultural hub of the Adirondacks.
This summer, visitors can experience this thriving arts scene in a variety of ways and places, from bands in the park, to walking through the vibrant downtown streets and visiting the many galleries.
20th anniversary of ArtWalks
There’s nothing more Saranac Lake than the Thursday ArtWalks. Every third Thursday in June through September, the galleries open their doors and showcase their artwork. Art and oftentimes the artists who created it spill onto the streets from 5-7:30 p.m. Follow up the ArtWalk with free live music at the Party on the Patio every Thursday at the Waterhole. The venue is a frequent stop for traveling bands from as far away as Texas and Nashville playing soul, reggae, funk, blues, and rock.
ArtWorks Studio Tours
All are invited to enjoy a behind-the-canvas experience as Saranac Lake artists open their workspaces to the public for Saranac Lake ArtWorks’ popular Studio Tours. The events are an opportunity to learn about each artist’s process, inspiration, and materials, see works in all stages of progress, and watch artists demonstrate their techniques in a wide variety of styles, subjects, and media including painting, pastel, ceramics, printmaking, woodcarving, fused glass, photography, fiber art and more.
The 2018 Studio Tours will be held on the last weekend of each month, June through November. The Tours are self-guided and free to the public. Tour hours are 10 a.m.-5 p.m. on Fridays and Saturdays, and noon-3 p.m. on Sundays.
Adirondack Plein Air Festival
Plein air artists apply from all over the country, and 50 are selected to participate by a team of jurors. There are five days of outdoor painting at various scenic locations, and spectators are encouraged to come watch. Locations include the Paul Smith's College’s Visitor Interpretive Center, the Saranac River, historic downtown buildings, and many other spots.
This year’s event is August 13-18.
Music in the Mountains
Every Wednesday through the summer, Berkeley Green, located in the heart of downtown, draws a crowd with free live music. Bring a lawn chair or blanket, or get ready to dance — whatever your pleasure! And at the end of summer, visit during Hobofest, an all-day free music festival celebrating various genres and the independent hobo spirit. Taking place on Sunday of Labor Day weekend, the event highlights many of the area’s finest musicians and with imported traveling veterans. This year’s line-up can be found here.