Tens of thousands of art enthusiasts and revelers are expected to turn out for the 35th annual Palo Alto Festival of the Arts this weekend, transforming University Avenue into an open-air gallery.
More than 300 artists and crafters from across the country will show off their work at the annual showcase on Saturday, Aug. 27, and Sunday, Aug. 28. The festival will take place from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free.
Palo Alto police are warning of "significant traffic delays," advising commuters to "budget extra time if you need to travel around the area" of University between Webster and High streets.
University will be closed between Webster and High on Saturday and will remain closed until about 11 p.m. on Sunday, according to police.
Streets running north and south between Hamilton and Lytton avenues will also be closed to traffic during the same time period. However, Cowper and Emerson streets will be open during the overnight hours on Saturday to allow north-south traffic to pass, police said.
Some artisans will bring their furniture and home goods to the arts festival, including Sandy Kreyer, a ceramics artist from Long Beach, and Cathi Borthwick, a blacksmith from Arizona.
The arts festival will also feature local food vendors, live music, fine art purveyors, food and wine booths, kids' activities and the poplar Italian Street Painting Expo, a showcase of 60 artists creating chalk art on asphalt canvases on Tasso Street. Funds raised by the expo benefit the Palo Alto's nonprofit Youth Community Service.
The event is sponsored by the Palo Alto Chamber of Commerce. The Chamber recommends that festivalgoers bring tote bags for easy transportation of purchases. Festivalgoers are also encouraged to use public transit or ride a bike. However, free parking is also available within a block or two of the festival site, with parking for disabled patrons in all city lots.
The city will provide free Crosstown Shuttle rides to the event. The Palo Alto Shuttle service will run every half hour from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. during the festival.
The Palo Alto Weekly is a sponsor of the festival. For more information, go to mlaproductions.com.
• To see a social media collection of photos from last year's festival, go to the Weekly's Storify page.