The Ventura Art & Street Painting Festival returns for its 15th year Saturday and Sunday at the Ventura Harbor Village.
Admission and parking for the festival, with 20 chalk artists and 30 vendors, is free. The event runs from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. each day at 1583 Spinnaker Drive in Ventura.
When the art festival began 15 years ago, there was no street painting. The festival moved in 2011 from a park to the Ventura Harbor, where street painting was added, said Barbara Hinton, founder and executive director of the event.
“Being at the harbor, there was all this cement out there,” Hinton said. “I knew a couple of artists who were into that and I thought: ‘I’ll add that in.'”
Chalk artists will be located along the harbor promenade. Vendors will sell jewelry, paintings, photography and pottery near Brophy Bros. Restaurant & Clam Bar, On the Alley and Andria’s Seafood Restaurant & Market.
Street painting continues to be popular because people are fascinated watching artists work on their hands and knees with chalk outside of a personal studio, Hinton said.
“Here, you get to see something happen before your very eyes,” she said. “You might not see the whole thing all at once, but you could keep checking back on it and then you definitely get to see the final product.”
Musician Preston Smith will perform from noon-3 p.m. Saturday and reggae act Tony Lee and Forbidden Fruit will take the stage from noon-3 p.m. Sunday.
The festival benefits Food Share of Ventura County and has raised approximately $60,000 for the nonprofit over the years, said festival spokesperson Susan Bejeckian.
More information is available at venturaartfestival.com