Art, live music and pie collided Friday in downtown Auburn.
The Seventh Annual SummerNight Downtown Art Walk took place from 6-9:30 p.m. Friday, June 14. The event featured local and regional artists, live music, activities for children and late night dining and shopping. For the first time, the event included a pie bake-off.
“SummerNight is a self-guided art walk featuring works in every medium, from photography to sculpture, from fine art to live music and event performance and culinary art,” said Sara Hand Custer, cultural arts director for Auburn. “It’s a block party with artistic flair.”
Custer said she was looking forward to the new pie bake-off this year.
“Each contestant may enter up to three pies for an entry fee of $5 per pie,” Custer said. “Artists participating in the event may submit a pie for free.”
Slices of pie will be sold for $3, with all proceeds going to the Auburn Arts Association.
Judgments on the pie were made by the Auburn Arts Association and based on overall appearance, creativity, crust, taste, use of local ingredients and flavor. Winners were announced at 7:15 p.m. on the main stage of the Art Walk.
Artists Dave Potts, a contemporary folk musician, and Spoonful James provided live music for the event. Potts took the stage at 6 p.m. with Spoonful James following at 7:30 p.m.
Both artists have a history with Auburn. Potts is a resident of the city, and Spoonful James was founded in Auburn in 1996.
The Guitar Shoppe sponsored the event and orchestrated the sound equipment for the night.
The Guitar Shoppe owner and English instructor Tom O’Shea enjoyed the night’s events.
“This is the first time I’ve been involved with the Art Walk,” O’Shea said.
O’Shea has owned The Guitar Shoppe for five months, though the business has been in Auburn for more than 25 years and has previously been involved with the SummerNight Downtown Art Walk.
In addition to pie and music, there were activities for children such as sidewalk chalk and pie-themed projects. Aubie also made an appearance.
Downtown businesses were open later than normal business hours, but Custer encouraged citizens to arrive early and take advantage of the shopping and restaurants.
The City of Auburn, the Auburn Arts Association and the Auburn Downtown Merchant association hosted the event. Local businesses helped sponsor the event.
“Planning the event is not difficult due to the great collaboration between the City of Auburn, Auburn Arts Association and the Auburn Downtown Merchant Association,” Custer said.
She expected 3,000-5,000 people to attend.
“Our goal this year is to encourage the community to take advantage of the arts in a creative downtown atmosphere,” Custer said.
College Street from Thach Avenue to Tichenor Avenue and Magnolia Avenue from Wright Street to Gay Street were closed to traffic from 5:30-9:45 p.m. Friday.
Those driving to the event could park for free on the first floor of the Auburn Municipal Parking Deck or at Auburn Bank, Regions Bank, BBVA Compass Bank, First Baptist Church of Auburn, Auburn United Methodist Church, Four Seasons Cleaners, Auburn Wesley Foundation and Tiger Rags. A parking map was available at AuburnAlabama.org/parks.
Additional information can be found at AuburnArtsAssociation.org, the City of Auburn’s Facebook page, or by calling the Jan Dempsey Community Arts Center at 334-501-2963.