10/4/2011 8:03:00 AM Jerome Art Walk celebrates 5th anniversary ‘Jerome has become an art destination’
Jerome artist Cody DeLong said people count on Kudos to know where to take visiting friends. “It’s become a staple for locals and tourists alike.” He said the online edition of Kudos is especially important.
Jerome's Donna Chesler said the Art Walk has been very good for the businesses in town as well as for the artists, gallery owners and studio owners. “We’ve had great support from our sponsors right from the start.”
JEROME - The Jerome Art Walk, held the first Saturday of every month, celebrated its fifth anniversary in September. The event has grown and evolved and become very successful.
"We started out with 25 members (participating galleries and studios)," said Donna Chesler, owner of Gallery 527 at 527 Main St, "and we've still got about 25 members. At the high school, we've always had about 10 members because they are also studios and it's very interesting to people to see the art in process."
Chesler said the Art Walk also has about 25 sponsors, local businesses that show up in the event's brochure.
"We draw a lot of people to town," said Michael Gamble, one of the owners of Pura Vida Gallery at 501 School St. "Every restaurant in town is packed, as well as the hotel and bed and breakfast rooms."
Cody DeLong, oil painter and owner of Cody DeLong Studio at 300 Hull Ave, said it is busy in Jerome all day on the Art Walk days.
"Everybody has heard about it, all over Arizona," said Kim Hoshal, fine art landscape photographer and owner of Purple Sky Photography in the Old Jerome High School, Room 300 in Building A.
Chesler said the Art Walk has been very good for the businesses in town as well as for the artists, gallery owners and studio owners. "We've had great support from our sponsors right from the start."
Vlad Costa, owner and chef of 15. Quince Grill & Cantina at 363 Main St. agrees that the Art Walk is good for business. "It's all about the art," he said.
"The Art Walk provides a lot of business in this town," Costa said. "Saturday nights of the Art Walk are packed. It's one of the busiest nights of the month."
Costa said his restaurant might have a two to three hour wait on Art Walk nights.
The members of the Art Walk decided some time ago to run the event the first Saturday night of every month, all year long, regardless of weather.
"The reality of the event is the staying power," Chesler said. "Which is why we've kept it every month of the year."
"The Art Walk has created a camaraderie between artists and galleries," said Gamble. "It's not just about that one night."
DeLong said, "The word has spread out from the first couple of years,"
Hoshal agrees. "We see a lot more people coming up from the Phoenix area."
Chesler said a national magazine picked Jerome as an Eden for artists to live in. "Jerome has become an art destination."
All four of these gallery owners believe that much of the Art Walk's success is because Kudos started covering - from the very beginning - the galleries, studios and artists of the Art Walk with features.
"You have people coming in who've seen it in Kudos," said Hoshal.
DeLong said people count on Kudos to know where to take visiting friends. "It's become a staple for locals and tourists alike."
He said the online edition of Kudos is especially important.
"Kudos has been part of our evolution," Chesler said. "People look at it, and share it."
Gamble said Kudos is important to the event because, "The Art Walk is the marketing arm of the town."